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Behringer X32: Our Thoughts And Review

Photograph of the blog post author, Jodie Francis

Jodie Francis

18.9.2020

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The company Behringer are well-known for creating professional audio equipment for musicians and producers. Their Behringer X32 is seriously high quality! The company was founded back in 1989 and they have seen great success with their previous products. They are popular with producers for their ease of use and high-quality results. 

In this article, we are going to review the Behringer X32 and discover if it’s worth making the purchase. So make sure that you keep reading to discover everything that you need to know about the Behringer X32.

behringer 32 sound desk

What Is The Behringer X32?

So what actually is the Behringer X32, and what does it do? The X32 is a 32-channel and 16-bus digital mixing device that has numerous built-in effects and features. Its main use is live sound, however, Behringer has ensured that it’s ideal for studio use as well. 

So what are the main features of the device? There’s a 0-input, 25-total-bus digital mixer with 16 mix buses, 6 matrix buses and one main LCR. There’s also a 6-band parametric EQ, dynamics processing and scene management for the more complicated productions. The Behringer X32 is a highly configurable device as it has a total of 40 processing channels. Plus up to 25 motorized faders. 

You can connect your USB to this device and it allows for uncompressed recordings. It can store show presets and allow for system updates to ensure that it’s working at its maximum capacity. There’s the option to utilise the Behringer P16-M Personal Monitoring System. An interface card (X-USB) is included with your purchase and gain-programmable microphone preamps have the ability to deliver a high-quality and dynamic range and CMRR. 

Finally, and these are sold separately, there are 48-channels ready for digital snakes by way of AES50 ports. There’s really not a big difference between the Behringer X32 and the Behringer X32 Compact. The main differences are the numbers of features, for example, the 40 channels are the same, but there are 32 mic inputs for the X32 and 16 for the X32 Compact. The main outputs for the X32 stand at 16 while the X32 Compact has 8. The X32 has 25 faders and the X32 Compact has 17. Otherwise, the device is the same, it just differs in size. 

Where Can The X32 Be Used? 

music studio

We believe that this product is extremely versatile. It’s already popular with places of worship, indoor and outdoor theatres and is used for gigs and performances. It also works well for live-sound installations, as well as in the studio. Some producers have become very reliant on this product for professional audio. The desk is so versatile, well-built and compact that we challenge you not to find a use for it!

The Pros Of The Behringer X32

In this section of our review, we are going to examine the positives of the Behringer X32 product. 

The Look And Feel 

We recognise that the look of the product isn’t important to all producers, however to others it matters a great deal so it’s worth commenting on. The actual product weighs 20kg and this means that it weighs less than most other analogue 32 channel mixers.

Behringer has ensured that it comes with a fabric covering which is ideal for keeping any surfaces debris-free and clean. Another thing that you’ll notice is that the scribble scripts change colour. This is really handy for separating the different channels from each other. After all, the last thing you want to happen is to confuse them and waste your time. The device takes just sixteen seconds to load up. This is decreased even more if you have a USB device connected, as it will take just eleven seconds. Overall, the look is brilliant and it feels robust and safe. 

Ease Of Use And Flexibility 

Everybody likes to make the most of their time, right? In particular music producers who are juggling numerous different projects at one time. More than one person can use it at once to tackle different tasks. 

The layout of the device is a huge positive as it promotes a natural workflow. The board is divided into five main sections for mixing: channel strip, input channels, display and monitoring, bus/ group/ /main channels and scenes/assign/mute groups. The great thing about the mute options is that you can split them over two channels, for example, you could have one channel for the group mute and the other with whatever effects you would like to use. Plus you can add delays or reverb blooms no matter what page your faders are on. 

The Price 

woman with money

The street value of the X32 is £2,000. This is considered a good price for all that it offers. A music engineer has said of the product: it has “75 per cent as much quality and functionality as the Midas Pro2”. This product costs £18,000, making it a significant rise in price in comparison to the X32. This means that the X32 provides you with high-quality audio at a low price.

Hi-Fi Sound 

woman with headphones listening to music

Another plus to using the X32 is that your computer actually fades into the background while you use it, and by this, we mean that you can create with only a few clicks of the mouse. This reinforces the ease of use of the product. 

A group of producers said this about the X32: “We did a series of projects with the reggae band, ‘One Shot’. We recorded their whole set in the studio, mixed it down, stored the mix and then recalled it at a live gig. This preset mix/mic configuration meant the sound-check took just seven minutes – it took longer to plug in all our mics!” This demonstrates that the headphone mixes have fantastic monitoring qualities. What’s more, there is a range of sound effects available and the reverbs are especially good. 

Cons Of The Behringer X32 

Now it’s time to examine some of the challenges that this product comes with because it’s not free from them. 

The Screen 

The screen of the X32 isn’t a touch screen, and we know that this will disappoint some people. Another issue in terms of the screen is that it’s not adjustable and depending on your work area this could prove a problem. For example, if you had a glare on the screen you couldn’t change its position and it might not be possible for you to alter its location and this could negatively impact your work time. 

No Clock 

The X32 has no external clock and this will disappoint some of you. Although you can utilise the AES outputs to make a master clock you can’t add it to another source and this can be frustrating. 

The App Can Lag 

phone plugged into laptop

The X32 comes with an app that means engineers and producers can make additions to their work while walking around. You just have to be connected to a Wi-Fi network to use it. It’s worth noting that the Behringer X32 needs to be connected to the same external network as your iPhone or iPad and you can also connect it to your Mac and PC. However, there have been numerous complaints from users that the app can lag and jump, particularly when you are using the faders and this can be time-wasting for you. 

No Traditional Digital Input Options 

There seems to be an oversight in that there’s actually no option for traditional digital inputs like S/PDIF which would allow you to connect a CD player to the device. What’s more, the USB replay option fails to recognise iPhones, iPads and MP3 files. The only thing that will be linearly played back is a WAV file and this has to be already saved and stored in the folders of the root directory. 

This means that you can’t play your MP3s over a PA system, which is the way some people prefer to work. The desk needs to be aligned to the same sample rate as your files, and even though you could perform a sample-rate conversion in a v2.0 firmware, there will be people out there that consider this to be an extra hassle. 

Final Thoughts On Behringer X32

behringer x32 sound desk

So there we have it – our complete review of the Behringer X32! Overall, we would definitely recommend this product to music producers and sound engineers for numerous reasons. The product is visually pleasing and it’s a great size and weight. So if you value studio space then this is a viable option for you! It’s an extremely functional product and its ease of use has been noted by numerous users, as the desk is set out logically and this allows for a smooth workflow. What more could you ask for? In addition to this, the price is extremely fair and workable for those of you with the budget for it. 

Overall, the main thing that we would emphasise about the Behringer X32 is that it produces professional-quality audio for a brilliant price. Now you have learned about Behringer X32, you will hopefully be utilising your new skills when performing live and producing music! Allow us to help you amplify your music, collaborate with others, help with music marketing and even get your music in TV, film and more. Why not try Music Gateway for free?



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