PA Equipment review - Soundcraft M8 Mixer 

Bose MB4 PA Speaker This must be one of the finest small analogue mixers around. Not perhaps as feature packed as some mixers it still has everything you need. It's layout is spacious, easy to navigate & very elegant.  

At first I wasn't sure if the 3 band (with swept mid) EQ would be adequate since I'd been used to using a 4 band EQ. This hasn't been a problem though.   It's hard for me to understand why but the pre-amp/EQ section just gives such a nice sound that it doesn't need a lot of EQ adjustment. Soundcraft describe the M8 as having the "classic British EQ section".    I don't know what that means but I do know it sounds amazing!

The M8 is aimed at both the live sound & recording market.   It has pre-amp out sockets on each XLR channel which is handy for recording live events.  There are 2 pre-fader auxilliaries & 2 post-fade.

The M8 is in the same league as other fine mixers like the Allen & Heath Mix Wizard, PA12 & the Mackie CFX12.

When you consider that you can buy budget mixers with the same number of channels for around $350, The $AUD1300 street price is quite a premium but worth every penny if you're looking for something special.    It's also worth noting that the M8 has 8 fully featured XLR channels then another 4 stereo channels effectively making it a 12 channel mixer.   This is very handy in a live sound setting as you can use the extra stereo channels for iPods, CD players or line level instruments like keyboards or effects returns.

The M8 can be rack mounted but that doesn't mean it has ugly, sharp exposed rack ears.   The ears are hidden behind a brushed alluminium cover making it perfect for non-rack use too.

Overall the M8 is an exceptional mixer.  I use mine in my small hire business & it's never dissapointed me & it's always a pleasure to use.  If there were any down sides it would be that due to it's 19 inch rack mount format, it is a quite large.   The power supply is built in which in my opinion is better than an external power supply (no chance of forgetting it) & it's very solidly built.   This does combine to make it a bit heavy but not exccesively so.   The headphone volume could be a bit louder for live music but is OK.
 
Specs: 8 XLR channels, 4 x stereo Jack. 
 
The Good:
-Amazingly clean, quiet sound.
-Superb EQ section.
-Elegant look.
-Rack mountable
.
-Made in England.
-Pre-amp out sockets.
 
The Bad:
-Not as compact as other mixers.
-Bit heavy.
-Headphone volume could be louder.
 
My Rating: 9/10 

In Action Photos: