Harrison Consoles: Mixbus32C

Rediscover the Art of Mixing

Mixing – as a discipline and as an art - has come of age, but is by no means remaining static. Its continued growth and refinement require the support of equally mature technical products that can keep pace with (or stay ahead of) the demands of the business. At the heart of every successful studio is a mixing environment capable of meeting the tough production requirements of producers and engineers, and capable of adapting to the uniqueness of every artist and every work of art.

Why Harrison? The Record Speaks for Itself.

Over the last 40 years, Harrison consoles have earned, throughout the world, an enviable reputation for excellence. This is no accident. Such a level of acceptance can only be gained as a product proves its maturity through performance in the field. This real-time reputation is, without a doubt, the best measure of a product’s true worth. For example, the world renowned Harrison 32C analog console was used on records by Michael Jackson “Thriller", Paul Simon “Graceland", Janet Jackson, AC/DC, ABBA, Queen, Led Zeppelin, ELO, Genesis, Blondie, and Supertramp, to name a few, and was instrumental in establishing the sound of those amazing records. Many of those consoles are still in operation throughout the world.


Dynamic Maturity + Contemporary Mixing
Harrison Mixbus32C is as relevant today as the first Harrison 32 series consoles were 40 years ago. Harrison consoles are dynamically mature products – products that retain the benefits of long, successful experience while incorporating the best of all the new technology. Mixbus32C is designed in the most operationally ergonomic manner possible. Mixbus was hailed by the industry as a breakthrough for “in the box” mixing by incorporating decades of console building experience into a cost effective mixing platform for today. Mixbus32C takes that concept to the natural next step by using the full resources of today’s technological advancements to precisely emulate not only the operational advantages, but to faithfully emulate the analog performance of the traditional analog console.



Operational Advantages
Because of the way the Mixbus32C mixer page is laid out, the most commonly used controls are displayed and are accessible at all times using a rich, high contrast, GUI design that gracefully and accurately emulates the original hardware version of the Harrison 32C console. This traditional layout not only looks good but allows the engineer to approach the console as if it were a musical instrument, directly affecting the art of mixing and contributing greatly to the success of any given mix.

Analog Performance
Harrison has pioneered the use of high performance computer technology over the last 20 years to provide unmatched processing power in the world’s largest mixing environments. By keeping up with these incremental technological steps through the decades, Harrison can now faithfully emulate the beautifully designed analog signal processing designs of the past and incorporate them into a full function “True Analog” mixing console within the digital audio workstation environment.

More Equalization
Each Mixbus32C channel strip incorporates an exact emulation of the original Harrison 32C parametric four-band sweepable EQ with a separately switchable filter section including second order high-pass and low-pass filters. Every resistor, capacitor, and transistor was modeled. To run this complex DSP on every channel strip was impossible just 5 years ago.

More Buses
Mixbus32C provides 12 stereo mix buses, each with individual level control, latency compensation, and associated master channel incorporating the highly successful Harrison tape saturation, bus compression, and tone control functionality.


Some Mixbus32C Features

  • Straightforward “knob per function” mixer layout based on Harrison's renowned 32-series music consoles
  • Precise emulation based on Harrison's famous 32 series analog console circuit designs
  • Precision algorithms for EQ, Filter, Compression, Analog Tape Saturation, and Summing
  • Fourth-generation Harrison "True Analog Mixing™" processing engine with enhanced compressor/limiter algorithms; built-in sidechain busing, and increased plugin flexibility
  • The Mixbus32C engine is internally dithered, ramped, and gain staged so that sound quality is preserved as close to analog as possible
  • Unlimited stereo or mono input channels, each with unlimited plugins, sends, and hardware inserts. (limited only by CPU and disc speed)
  • Unlimited MIDI tracks, each with virtual instrument support, unlimited plugins, sends and inserts
  • Polarity, Input trim, Sweepable 4-band EQ with second order HP and LP filters, Compression, and 12 mix bus sends on every track
  • Mixbus32C has an optimized signal flow with 12 stereo mix buses and a master bus, all featuring Tone controls, Compression, Sidechaining, and Analog Tape Saturation simulation
  • Stereo Master bus that features Tone controls, Analog Tape Saturation, K-meter, Stereo Correlation Meter, and Limiter
  • Automatic plugin delay compensation to support effects such as parallel compression without time misalignment
  • Comprehensive "at-a-glance" metering with peak, peak hold, and compressor gain reduction visible on every track and bus
  • Extensive DAW editing features including “Smart Tool”, Ripple Edit, and configurable keybindings for nearly every operation
  • Industry standard plug-in support: Mixbus32C loads VST plugins on Windows, AudioUnit (AU) plugins on OSX, and LV2 plugins on all platforms
  • Industry standard audio I/O support: Mixbus32C uses ASIO/Directsound on Windows, CoreAudio on OSX, and ALSA/JACK on Linux
  • Mixbus32C provides professional features such as Loudness Analysis (dBTP+LUFS+LU Range), LTC (SMPTE) generation and sync; video pullup/pulldown
  • Persistent undo (undo remains possible after closing and reopening a session)
  • Multi-core and 64-bit optimizations provide increased track counts across all OS platforms
  • Over 25 ‘MIDI filter’ plug-ins including functions such as transposing, velocity scaling, etc
  • Support for video timeline, video window, and audio+video exports
  • Includes a brand-new virtual instrument: “SetBfree”, a lovingly modeled Tonewheel Organ by Robin Gareus plus Harrison's Dyno-Mite envelope-designer plug-in for drums
  • Recording operates like a tape machine: punch-in on the fly, and use per-track input monitoring just like a multitrack tape machine
  • Extensive export features including multitrack stem export, simultaneous multi-format exports, multiple export ranges, CD track markers, silence trimming, normalization, and command-line arguments to trigger third-party encoders or file-management scripts
  • Audio regions are stacked in “layers”, and every region fadein/out is a crossfade to the region(s) beneath it
  • Plugin “pin connection management” provides rich editing of signal-flow through each channel's path, including full support for dual mono, mono-to-stereo, sidechaining, and other advanced flows
  • The user interface scales to fit your monitor; larger monitors will get bigger knobs and sharper text
  • Refined workflow and graphics, including scaling and support for HiDPI (Retina) displays
  • Incredibly cost effective because of our world-wide open source collaborators
  • Generic MIDI devices can use “MIDI Learn” to assign MIDI controls directly to on-screen knobs or use MIDI profiles to select many pre-configured device layouts from a pull-down menu
  • Mackie control protocol is provided for motorized fader controllers, and the Mackie protocols have been extended to ergonomically control the Mixbus channelstrip EQ, compressor, and 12 mix bus sends. Dedicated support is provided for popular devices like the Presonus Faderport & Faderport8, Mackie MCU, and Behringer X-Touch controllers
  • OSC (Open Source Control) protocol supports ethernet-based wireless tablet controllers such as TouchOSC and Lemur for iOS and Android to remote-control Mixbus32C
  • Lua Scripting (new in v4!): Use the Lua scripting language to automate tasks such as track creation, renaming tracks, adding plugins, or creating "macro" operations
  • VCA Faders (new in v4!): Use VCA faders to control multiple channel faders at once. A fader can be assigned to multiple remote VCA faders, adding another powerful dimension of control and organization to your mixes
  • Tempo Ramps and Tempo Maps (new in v4!): Use advanced features to map your live recording's tempo and structure (no need to record to a click!) - or import a tempo map from MIDI
  • General-MIDI synthesizer and 2 multi-output sampled drum instruments help you arrange a song immediately, without any other plugin instruments

Analog Console Feel

Engineers have been mixing on hardware consoles for more than 80 years because that’s what works. Need to make a change? grab a knob and change it. We believe that mixing inside a DAW should be no different and as easy to use as a hardware console. So we make the mixer portion of Mixbus32C work just like a hardware console, applying precision & proprietary algorithms to provide Harrison’s great sounding 32C analog conole EQ, HP and LP Filters, and Dynamics on every channel… without the need for additional plug-ins. Mixbus32C also provides 12 stereo aux mix busses, a stereo master bus with analog tape saturation simulation, a monitor section, and precision summing, all based on Harrison’s world-renowned large format analog and digital consoles. You can work with the fluidity of a traditional analog recording studio while retaining the convenience of a DAW.

For example, the fader area contains the input trim, fader level, compressor threshold (with meter), and compressor makeup gain. This provides the most-used gain functions within a very small "mouse travel" distance. Compare this to other DAWs which require juggling multiple windows, popups, and menus simply to navigate these most fundamental mixing features!

Metering is another aspect of DAW design that can make mixing more fluid. In the mix window, Mixbus32C provides the channel meter, compressor gain reduction meter, tape saturation meters, peak limiting meter, K-14 average level meter, stereo correlation meter, and a final peak limiting meter simultaneously. Compare this to other designs which require plug-ins from several manufacturers and several windows to find this important information. Mixbus32C provides everything you need to mix without distractions in an easy-to-use, one-window interface! Finally, mixing “inside the box” is a very sound philosophy.

Already using another DAW?

No problem. It’s a simple and quick process to export your audio files from your current DAW to Mixbus32C and use the exceptional Mixbus32C “True Analog Style™ Mixing” engine for your final mix.  No need to change your current workflow, just add convenience, ease, and sound quality by doing all your final mixing in Mixbus32C.



Powerful Editing Features in Mixbus

The editing model in Mixbus32C has been highly refined based on our user's feedback, as well as industry standard "best practices" and includes one of the most powerful and versatile editing suites of any DAW available. "Smart" mode combines the features of timeline-based editing and object-based editing depending on the location of the mouse within the track. Mixbus32C allows the user to quickly "swipe" across the waveform and drag the gain level up or down. By reducing this very common task to a minimum of operations, editing in Mixbus32C becomes a real joy for beginners as well as professionals who have to work quickly. The timeline view provides detailed waveform and MIDI data, as well as automation points and crossfades. Editor views can be resized and re-arranged to fit your needs; and there are dozens of key commands and mouse shortcuts to speed up this process.

Many other DAWs use a hide-and-seek approach when it comes to revealing editing features. Mixbus32C makes the learning process much easier by providing a right-click context menu on many of the edit window elements. Want to know how you can manipulate a region? Simply right-click on it to view the contextual help.

Incredible Value

Harrison is all about providing real value to our users. While other products are bloated with buttons and features that you never use, we focus on doing all the important things right. Giving you the tools that you need to get your work done creatively and efficiently while maintaining that great “analog sound”. We consider Mixbus32C to be the next member of the Mixbus DAW family, serving as an introduction to the famous Harrison 32C Equalizer and analog mixing quality found in all Harrison consoles, while also providing features that are normally reserved for the top tiers of competing products (such as unlimited tracks/instruments/plug-ins, 3rd­ party plug-in loading, controller support, timecode sync, video window, etc)

Our roadmap for Mixbus and associated products is long and marked with exciting new Harrison technology, software, and hardware along the way. We want our users to take this journey with us. In the future, we will be talking more about where Mixbus32C is headed such as:

  • More software versions targeted for specific workflows
  • A Mixbus32C hardware control surface incorporating many Harrison console innovations
  • Many more famous sounding Harrison plug-ins
  • Film surround panning (including Atmos and Auro3D)
  • Console style automation, bussing, and monitoring features including expanded mixer features
  • Specialized DSP from our film consoles (noise reduction, etc.) all the way up to full Mixbus32C integration into our large format consoles

We welcome you to the Harrison Mixbus family and trust your experience will be creative, rewarding, fun, and effective.


 

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