I’ve been a big fan of PreSonus and their line of StudioLive mixers since we purchased one of the early models for our church. It has been easy to use, and the multi-track recording features have worked great for us. We have an first generation StudioLive 16.4.2 board, so we are at the limits of the board with the number of channels we use. So when I saw the new third generation StudioLive that has just been announced, I wanted to learn a little more about it.
When PreSonus first introduced the StudioLive boards, they were an industry changing product. By incorporating easy to use studio quality multi-track recording in a digital board for live mixing, they were able to capture a large part of the market. Their products were also inexpensive, so that really helped them with smaller touring bands and churches. However, to keep the price down, they eliminated motorized faders which are popular on higher end digital boards. For the last couple of years, the Behringer X32 board has become very popular because it took some of the best features of the StudioLive product and added motorized faders, personal mixers, and more, all while keeping the price down. Now it looks like PreSonus has their answer.
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The new StudioLive 32 would be one of my first recommendations for most mid-sized churches. They have finally added motorized faders, a touchscreen control surface, and built-in multi-track recording to SD cards. Sweetwater has it listed currently at $2699, and I’ve seen it even cheaper at some of the wholesale distributors that sell to churches. The best way to check it out is to watch a few of the overview videos. I’m definitely adding this to our wish list for church. We could use the additional channels and the new features would help simplify what we are doing.