With the announcement and introduction of new products, the demise of analog became apparent toward the end of 2012, and confirmation came just last month at the Winter NAMM show in Anaheim, CA.
Before I go much further, let me state that I realize that the analog console remains a viable option if you need a very small mixer, and that analog is also very viable in a studio setting for recording. The thrust of Geartechs is technology for worship, and in the worship setting, in sizes of 16 channels or larger, the analog console is most often not your best choice.
Virtually every mixer manufacturer had something new to show at NAMM. Presonus, Soundcraft, Line 6, Behringer, Roland, Allen & Heath, Midas, Digico and others showed us all the reasons that you should buy a digital console.
Back in December of 2009, when the Presonus StudioLive 16.4.2 was released, I wrote an article about the fact that buying a digital console was like getting the mixer itself free. That statement is even more true today.
Factor out the advantages of the consoles themselves (settings recall, per-channel parametric equalization, iPad control, virtual soundcheck, multi-track recording, and more), and you'll find that just the 22 compressors in the StudioLive are worth $112.38 each (1/8 the cost of the Presonus ACP-88). That's nearly $2500 in compressors against a mixer that costs $1999 normally.
The story is similar for all digital console manufacturers. The benefits of owning a digital mixing system far outweigh the costs, no matter whose mixer you select. Mike Sessler from Church Tech Arts recently published a 4-part series comparing three of the leading small-to-mid-sized digital mixers from Roland, Presonus and Behringer.
We offer a variety of digital consoles. If you'd like to discuss the application of digital mixing in your setting, please call us.