Hot on the heels of Noise Engineering’s Eurorack mixer dream, we get a different approach. 1010music announces today at Knobcon that they’re bringing their bluebox mixer to Eurorack format, with quite a few extras. That means if this was closer to what you wanted in modular mixing, now you have a Eurorack-native device. CDM has both to test – but first, here’s a look at Bluebox.
It’s Barbenheimer for Eurorack mixers – two very different blockbusters arriving at the very same time.
Noise Engineering are giving you analog mixing and loads of physical controls (including faders), plus the ability to treat channels like VCAs. Oddly, I saw when that happened, someone had already pointed to the bluebox as an alternative. The mixing is digital, the interface is a touchscreen, but in return you get effects and integrated recording and playback. Now, obviously, which approach you prefer is really down to how you work.
The good news is, the bluebox in its transition to Eurorack hasn’t increased much in price and has picked up some new features:
New in modular edition:
- 1x USB-C port for external MIDI controllers and MIDI clock
- 1x USB-C port for 2-channel audio connection to your computer
- 6 CV inputs for modulation and control
- Fits in just 30HP
And the price is US$699 (vs $549 for the desktop edition) – I think that’s reasonable for the extras you get.
Plus the ability to attach a USB MIDI controller means you get around the limitations of using the touchscreen, especially trying to mix in a modular rig that’s fully patched.
But for adding mixing and effects and recording in 30HP space, this looks really appealing. And this still does everything the bluebox does.
bluebox features, now in module form:
- 12 mono or 6 stereo tracks of sound mixing – including prerecorded sounds (meaning you can load this into a skiff and have it for playing backing stems, etc.)
- Route each track independently to 4 mono – 2 stereo outputs or stereo headphone out
- 1 analog clock out
- TRS MIDI in and out
- microSD for recording and playing stereo or multitrack (with simultaneous playback and recording)
- Global compressor
- 4-band EQ
- Reverb and delay with independent per-track sends
- Project save and recall
I love that 1010music and Noise Engineering had these simultaneous launches, as there’s really very limited overlap here. Stay tuned for our double-header review of these two summer modular mixing blockbusters. I think it makes it even clearer what the Noise Engineering piece is about, too, in musical applications, as I can easily see a case for both. We will absolutely dig into all the details.
And yes, you’ll notice they did rather leave out patching in their demo video, so you can bet we will patch this and the Noise Engineering piece into some real-world musical situations.
Watch this space.
Questions? Let us know here.
Our detailed bluebox review by Andreas:
And that other mixer for Eurorack: