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Thursday, September 17, 2009

Yamaha EMX5016CF Portable Powered Mixer


One of the obstacles facing many engineers working small live sound events is having to drag the P.A. from venue to venue and constantly changing the setup. The Yamaha EMX5016CF portable mixer is designed to alleviate those P.A. woes for portable and installed applications where versatility and simplicity are paramount. Priced at $1,249 (MSRP) and combining a 16-channel mixer with a stereo power amp, built-in effects, digital EQ and a feedback eliminator, the EMX5016CF is a workhorse that provides intuitive operation.

The EMX5016CF has eight mono input channels (XLR mic or TRS line), each with 3-band EQ, insert, two aux sends, two effects sends to internal DSPs and 48-volt phantom power. Four stereo channels accept mono XLR mic or stereo ¼-inch or RCA inputs. The effects section's two DSP engines are based on Yamaha's ubiquitous SPX algorithms. The master output bus is available on ¼-inch stereo outs, RCA “record outs” and two stereo sub outs, in addition to the speaker outs.

All channels and the two effects returns route PFL to a headphone jack with level control. The eight mono channels include a one-knob compressor, which simultaneously raises the compression ratio and adjusts the makeup gain. In some applications (e.g., snare drum), I heard too much makeup gain, but I found the compressor to be effective for smoothing bass and vocals.
Both stereo effects processors have 16 presets, including reverb, delay, tremolo, chorus, phaser and other effects. These are returned on “mini-channels” with PFL, on/off, and aux 1 and aux 2 send controls, so routing effects into the monitors was an easy task. A knob for each effect modifies a single parameter, so adjustment is limited. Some of my faves were early reflections on snare and chorus on clean electric guitar.

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Freelance Live Audio Engineer/Systems/Faculty/ +918143455561