- Serato DJ
- Smooth Fader
- Overall feel is solid and well built
- Great pads
- Awesome price
At this point in time, June 2017, The Mixars Duo is old news. Mixars, an Italian dj and studio gear company, made a big splash at NAMM 2016 with their early line of mixers and turntables. Since then they have modified that first line and have announced newer pieces of gear. So why a Mixers Duo post now? Well, for starters, the Duo isn’t on every block yet. Not too many DJs and Tablist have had the chance to take a test drive. I personally cut on it at NAMM 2016 and then again May 2017. That’s a pretty big gap in between test rides. Also, all the videos I’ve seen of the Duo don’t really answer every question I have for it. They all say the same things. They all mention Serato DJ, the fader, the buttons, blah-blah-blah. I’m a full time working DJ. I want to know “Can I trust it as a daily driver?” Meaning, can I gig with it on a nightly basis? Can I perform with it and trust that it won’t fail me during a routine? Is this something that can replace the current 2 industry titans - The Rane 62 and Pioneer S9? Well, let’s discuss all of this.
Firstly, the Mixars Duo is well built. The metal posts under those fat rubber (and very grippy) knobs feel awesome and solid. Those big pads on the Duo are as dope and as soft as the S9 pads. There is zero delay and no latency in beating those pads either. Very trust worthy faders. I used the Duo at a recent TSL scratch session at Art & Vinyl in Austin, plenty of hands cut on that fader. It performed like a champ. The sound quality (in my opinion) is close to the Rane 62’s sound quality. Very warm and real - opposed to the S9’s digital to analog crunchy sound. Serato DJ (Today) works well with the Duo. If you’re not familiar with Serato DJ, it has had it’s ups and down in the past, creating a small revolt to bring back Scratch Live. So having Serato DJ respond without failure on the Duo is a huge deal to me. The outputs (XLR, Quarter inch and RCA) although industry standard at this point, are very convenient. It also offers two USB 2.0 INPUTS for added external hard drives and/or thumb drives, and midi controllers. That’s a cool feature. I didn’t use them, but it’s nice to know that I have them on there.
Now, can I use it for weekly gigs? The durability of the Duo makes me think I can. The sound quality makes me want to try it. The faders make me want to flex in front of a crowd. Serato DJ (on this mixer) gives me the confidence that I won’t embarrass myself with audio drop outs or miss assigned songs. So yes, I feel like I could gig with it. But do I want to? Well, I don’t know. I’m a big “good work flow” type of DJ. Meaning that I want to concentrate on the party, on the crowd and the dancing - and I want to concentrate on all of that with out having to remember to re-engage certain buttons and knobs. The Duo reminds me of the first series Rane 57. The Duo has several functions that involve midi mapping, engaging and disengaging buttons. What makes the Rane 62 and Pioneer S9 so wonderful for daily gigs is that the face plate functions are well streamlined. You can look up at the crowd and not at your mixer every time you cross over a song. Also the Duo comes with only one USB output, versus the 62 and S9’s double USB output ports. If you use the Duo at a gig, understand that you might be the only DJ that whole gig. I have a lot of homies that come through Austin for guest sets. The 62 and S9 offer seamless transitions in between DJ sets. Another bummer about the Duo is that, although the faders are smooth and dope, the fader knobs are way light in weight. It feels like I’m twiddling cotton candy when I move the fader knob. At the time of this post I could’t find a replacement fader knob that fit the Duo.
SO to tie it all up nice and neatly, The Duo (In my opinion) is a super dope mixer. Especially at it’s current price of around $699 (BUY NOW). I want to own one. But I want to own one for my studio. I don’t think it would leave my studio - ever. I couldn’t use it at a gig the way that I DJ. I would love scratching on it more if the fader knob was heavier. But I do like scratching with it. I enjoy the pads. I want to beat the crap out of them the way I do my Akai MPC2000. I want to produce my mixes with the Duo. I want to do all of this in the comfort of my studio space. If I sound like the way you feel, DJ and produce then the Duo might be the one for you. (Learn More)