Best Tablet Controlled Mixer: Mini Wireless Mixers Up To 12 Channels

Behringer XR12 Tablet Controlled Mixer

What is a Tablet Controlled Mixer?

A tablet controlled mixer is typically a knobless, faderless mixing board that uses a tablet to control it’s parameters via a Wifi (or other) network connection. The beauty of this type of mixer is that you can take a tablet into the crowd and mix from front of house, without needing long wires or a multichannel audio snake! Another benefit of this type of mixer is that it’s possible to let band members each have their own personal monitor mix. They can control their own mix via a tablet or a cell phone. This option is of course limited to the number of independent outputs that the mixer has. Another benefit of a tablet controlled mixer is that they typically give you more control over the mix! The manufacturers of these mixers aren’t limited to the number of knobs, buttons and faders on a physical board. The control surface is a tablet or computer screen with limitless options. Multi-Band Parametric EQs, 31 band EQ with RTA, independent compressors and limiters on each channel, and multiple independent effects processors are just a few of the goodies these mixers offer. There are actually small versions of this type of mixer that have just a few inputs and outputs. These wireless mini mixers are perfect for smaller acts simply wanting easy access and flexibility. Now let’s compare the Behringer XR12, the Midas MR12, the Soundcraft Ui12, and the Mackie ProDX8 and find out which is the best tablet controlled mixer for your needs and budget!

Behringer XR12 Tablet Controlled Mixer

The Behringer XR12 Tablet Controlled Mixer is the baby of Behringer’s XAir mixer lineup. It has four Midas designed microphone preamps, six 1/4″ balanced inputs and two 1/4″ instrument inputs. The XR12 also has ample monitoring capabilities for a wireless mixer at this price point. Two balanced XLR main outs (Left and Right), two 1/4″ balanced auxiliary outputs, and a 1/4″ headphone monitor output on an independent bus are also included! Digital i/o is limited to a USB input that can host a USB thumb drive for 2-channel recording or playback. The Behringer XR12 also comes with numerous options for mixer control. A Wifi router is built in, an ethernet port is also onboard as well as Midi i/o for full digital control by physical controllers, Macs, PCs, Linux, iPad, iPhone and Android! Under the hood the XR12 doesn’t disappoint either. Four effects engines, full dynamics on each channel, a 31 band EQ with RTA or a 6 band parametric EQ on the main bus are all at your fingertips. The software inside the XR12 is the very same software used in the larger XAir mixers. The XR12 also comes with rack ears for those who want to rack mount their investment. At $249.00, it’s hard to go wrong with this compact wireless dynamo!
Comparison Chart | Read Amazon Reviews

Midas MR12 Tablet Controlled Mixer

Midas is a legendary name is pro audio mixers. The MR12 looks almost identical to the Behringer XR12 and in many ways they are the same; however, the Midas MR12 has a few things up it’s sleeve that warrant the larger price tag! Perhaps the biggest upgrade is the four Midas Pro preamps housed in the MR12. These are the very same low noise, high resolution preamps that are found in the Midas Pro Series mixers as well as the M32. If you’ve ever priced nice preamps for recording purposes, you know that you can spends thousands on just one awesome preamp. In the Midas M12, you get four awesome preamps! Another difference is the software. The effects engines are the very same effects engines used in the M32 digital console! The Midas MR12 has the same input and output channel count, USB 2-channel recording or playback, onboard Wifi, ethernet, midi and rack mount as the Behringer XR12. But if you need Pro quality preamps and effects for a truly professional sound, the MR12 is your best option.
Comparison Chart | View On Amazon

Soundcraft Ui12 Tablet Controlled Mixer

The Soundraft Ui12 is similar to the previous wireless mixers because it has advanced software and effects capabilities.  The minimalist format of the mixer is also similar.  Reminiscent of the stage end of an audio snake.  The number of inputs is slightly different because the Ui12 provides four XLR combo inputs and four XLR standard inputs as opposed to the four XLR combo inputs and eight TRS inputs of the XR12 and MR12.  The last of the Ui12’s channels are dedicated to a pair of RCA inputs and stereo USB playback.  The Ui12 has an on board Wifi router and an ethernet jack for connection to a separate network switch or router.  The Soundcraft Ui12 has two software capabilities that the XR12 and MR12 do not have: dedicated Digitech amp modeling and DBX feedback suppression.  The amp modeling is nice for direct plugging any electric guitar or bass to dial in that perfect sound!  Built-in feedback suppression on the main outputs is also a nice feature for any live performance.  Another feature that sets this mixer apart is that it can be controlled by any phone, tablet or computer that is HTML5 compatible.  I actually owned the Soundcraft Ui16 and found all of it’s capabilities impressive and easy to use.  I did return the unit because I thought it was too noisy.  I’m not sure if it’s an issue with the preamps or outputs, but I tried numerous combinations of inputs and outputs and all were plagued with too much background hiss for my liking.
Comparison Chart | Read Amazon Reviews

Mackie ProDX4 Cell Phone Controlled Mixer

The Mackie ProDX4 is a completely different take on the mini wireless tablet controlled mixer.  In fact, it’s designed to be controlled by either an iPhone or an Android phone instead of a tablet!  There is also a Larger version of the ProDX4, the Mackie ProDX8.  The ProDX4 provides two XLR combo inputs with a 1/8″ stereo input for tablets, phones or media players.  Bluetooth is utilized for both mixer control and music streaming via either an iPhone or Android app.  When it comes to the software, the ProDX4 was built with simplicity and ease of use in mind.  All of the bells and whistles of the previously reviewed mixers aren’t included, but the basics for dynamics and mixing certainly are.  Each channel has a three band EQ, low pass filter and compression.  16 effects including reverbs, delays and chorus are also available for each channel.  The outputs also have a graphic EQ for added control over the mix.  All mixer settings can be controlled from a single knob on the front of the mixer.  Now how’s that for wireless simplicity. The Mackie ProDX8 has all the same features as the ProDX4, but with four more XLR combo inputs!

I purchased a Mackie ProDX4 for use with my Bose L1 Compact and I’m extremely impressed! It adds all of the missing options I needed for use with my L1 Compact in one tiny package. If you’re a singer songwriter looking for great sounding effects, wireless control and bluetooth audio for your performances, this is the mini mixer for you!! The sound is pristine. Wireless control is easier than I imagined it would be and the bluetooth audio can either be from the same phone or a different device. Pick this little unit up for a wonderful wireless mini mixing solution. You won’t be disappointed!
Comparison Chart | Read Amazon Reviews

The Best Tablet Controlled Mixer Up To 12 Channels

Based on my experience and study of these wireless mixers, I believe the Behringer XR12 is the best tablet controlled mixer with up to 12 channels for the money.  I also really like the Midas MR12 because of it’s higher quality preamps and effects, but believe that for most live music performance, the XR12 will more than do the job.  At it’s price point it’s an absolute bargain!  Based on my personal experience with the Soundcraft Ui Series wireless mixers, I was impressed with the it’s capabilities and ease of use, but disappointed by the noise introduced by the mixer.  With regard to the Mackie mini mixers, I’m actually more intrigued with the Mackie ProDX4 because of it’s size and price. This tiny wireless mixer may be the perfect solution to breathe new life into my Bose L1 compacts!  Stay tuned for more wireless tablet controlled mixer reviews and be sure to check out my other comparisons at BestProAudio.com! | Check Out the Behringer XR12 on Amazon!

Tablet Controlled Mixer Feature Comparison


Behringer XR12
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Midas MR12
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Soundcraft Ui12
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Mackie ProDX8
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Input Channels14
4 XLR / TRS
6 TRS
2 Hi Z
2 USB Playback
14
4 XLR / TRS
6 TRS
2 Hi Z
2 USB Playback
12
4 XLR / TRS
4 XLR
2 RCA
2 USB Playback
2
6 XLR / TRS
2 - 1/8" Stereo /
Bluetooth
Output Channels6
(2 XLR / TRS
2 TRS
2 Headphones)
6
(2 XLR / TRS
2 TRS
2 Headphones)
6
(4 XLR
2 TRS)
4
(4 TRS)
Network ConnectionsWifi / Ethernet / MidiWifi / Ethernet / MidiWifi / EthernetBluetooth
Mixer Control
and Streaming
USB Capabilities2 Channel Playback /
Recording
2 Channel Playback /
Recording
2 Channel Playback /
Recording
N/A
Multi-Effects Engines4441
Amp ModelingNoNoYesNo
Feedback SuppressionNoNoYesNo
Rack MountableYes
(Rack Ears Included)
Yes
(Rack Ears Included)
NoNo

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