Behringer Xenyx X1204USB Vs. Soundcraft Signature 22MTK: Head To Head Comparison – READ BEFORE YOU BUY!!

Choosing the right mixer when there are so many on the market these days isn't easy.
Especially when many of them are built for one specific need but being marketed as an all-rounder 🙄
But not to worry, I've got ya!
I have taken a deep dive into two beasts in the audio-mixing game and gone head to head with them: Behringer Xenyx X1204USB vs. Soundcraft Signature 22MTK.

We're looking at things like:
  • Sound Quality: This is the heart of the matter, right? How each mixer holds up in delivering crisp, clear audio. Are we talking about a mixer that makes your tracks sound like they're live from the garage, or are we hitting studio-quality sound?
  • Ease of Use: Nobody wants to spend hours figuring out which button does what. I’ll break down the user interface of both Behringer Xenyx X1204USB and Soundcraft Signature 22MTK. Are they plug-and-play easy, or will you need a PhD in mixology to use them?
  • Features and Functions: Ie. What's under the hood? Let's find out what sets them apart.
  • Durability: No matter your reason for buying, you want something that's gonna last, not fall apart after a few light sessions.
  • Price Point: Yep, money talks. When it comes to prices, we need to see which mixer gives us more bang for our buck. Is the higher price of one justified by its features, or is the other a hidden gem at a bargain price?
  • Customer Reviews and Feedback: What's the word on the street? Sometimes real-world use tells a different story than what the sales page says.

Behringer Xenyx X1204USB

I want to focus on the things the sales page doesn't tell you. And that's the good, bad, and the ugly.

I test and play around with mixer's all day, and the Xenyx is one of those ones you keep around. It's a good price for pretty much anybody to get their hands on, and if you're grabbing one second hand, you're all set.

So, I've know this mixer for seven years, and on some personal projects, I'm still using it almost 24/7. Some faders crackle, and a few buttons need a nudge now and then, but that's expected without regular maintenance.

Honestly, it's been a flawless experience for my needs, mainly as an XLR to USB interface.

The USB Interface

Good, But With Limitations

The USB input's a bit tricky; it lacks volume control and EQ adjustments. And if you're using the USB out, you're stuck with just 44.1K or 48K output, based on the main bus. This can be a bit limiting if you need to use both the main mix out and the USB output simultaneously.

Board Features: Hits and Misses

Quality Preamps with a Warm Touch ✅🔥

The preamps are surprisingly good, though they add a warm coloration to the audio. So that's either a positive or negative depending on your preference.

The built-in compressors and EQ are decent for the price.

The AUX channel's integration with the master mix, however, can be a bit limiting.

The FX channel, with its variety of sound effects, is a nice touch.

Final Verdict: Great Value, But Not Without Flaws

For its price, this board is a fantastic deal. No doubt about it!

It's not perfect, though – the USB interface could be more versatile, and the preamps, while good, have their quirks.

But considering the price, it's a solid choice for a range of audio needs, from small-scale live events to home studios.

Soundcraft Signature 22MTK

Everything The Product Sales Page Doesn't Tell You About The Soundcraft Signature 22MKT

I tested the Soundcraft Signature 22MKT for a couple of weeks. I know, not that long, but it's been a revelation every day.

I work with a local piece band and they've been able to lay down live recordings in one take, capturing everything onto separate tracks in the DAW.

The ability to record up to 22 tracks simultaneously has been a game-changer in this respect.

Sound Quality and Support

Warm, Analog Sound

The sound quality is exactly what we were looking for. The mixer provides a broad, balanced frequency range, delivering that warm, analog sound.

Plus, the onboard effects buses allow for creative mixing. Not to mention, the support from Soundcraft has been exceptional, both before and after purchase.

Who Is The 22MKT For? Not Beginners

Difficult Setup and Poor Documentation

I always have to give the good, bad and the ugly… so here it is:

It's not all smooth sailing. Setting up the mixer with Windows was a nightmare, with no useful online resources.

The manual was no help either. It's a great board for those who know what they're doing and know their way around boards, but I can definitely see how for a beginner, it would be a steep and frustrating learning curve.

Early Impressions ✅

Impressive Functionality

In the early days of testing out the 22MTK, I was impressed with its routing capabilities, especially to outboard gear.

The onboard Lexicon effects are a bonus, and the ability to use DAW plugins during live play is a huge plus. However, the lack of an on/off switch and inserts is a bit puzzling.

Channel Issues and Sturdiness

Some Quality Concerns

Unfortunately, I soon ran into issues with channel one having low gain and a hum. This was unexpected, especially considering the mixer hadn't seen much use.

While the mixer is generally sturdy, these issues do raise some concerns about its long-term reliability.

Perfect for Specific Needs

Ideal for Unique Applications

This mixer was perfect for running a mic through guitar pedals. Its small footprint and built-in effects make it versatile for creating unique sounds. It's a solid choice for those needing a compact mixer with good functionality.

Soundcraft 12MTK: A Better Choice For Beginners

I know I have kind of shifted between the 12 and the 22 and thats because they are pretty much the same thing, you either need the extra channels (22MTK) or oyu don't (12MTK).

But the like its big bro, the Soundcraft 12MTK offers good sound quality and is fairly lightweight. The preamps are notable, as is the mid-range EQ. However, there are significant design flaws, like the problematic gain ratio and the lack of an on/off switch, which can be frustrating. It's a good mixer overall but be prepared for some quirks.

Head 2 Head: Behringer Xenyx X1204USB or Soundcraft Signature 22MTK

Reliability Champion: Behringer Xenyx X1204USB

Sturdy and Dependable

Ever had a piece of studio equipment that's like your trusty old dog? That's exactly how the Behringer Xenyx X1204USB mixer evolves into over time. A seven-year journey with this audio interface has proven it to be a reliable workhorse, despite some faders crackling and buttons needing coaxing occasionally. But hey, we all have quirks right?

A Word (or Two) About Behringer Drivers

A Potential Nightmare for Windows 7 Users

Alright, let's talk drivers. If you're still rocking Windows 7 (no judgment), gird your loins before attempting to install Behringer drivers. It's as enjoyable as a root canal, causing drastic reductions in recording modes and destabilizing your system faster than a toddler on a sugar rush. My advice? Stick with the default drivers – they're like your favorite pair of jeans: reliable, comfortable and won't give you blue screens.

Decoding the USB Interface

Limited but Functional

The USB interface on this digital mixer is like that one cousin who's good at heart but can be a pain in the ass at family gatherings. It lacks volume control and EQ adjustments, which is kind of like making pancakes without syrup or butter. Also, you're locked into just 44.1K or 48K output if you're using the USB output based on the main bus which can be limiting if you want to use both simultaneously.

The Hits and Misses of the Board Features

Warm Preamps and a Few Limitations

The preamps are surprisingly good, adding a warm coloration to your audio like a sprinkle of paprika on your deviled eggs. The built-in compressors and EQ are decent for the price. However, AUX channel's integration with the master mix can be a bit like trying to juggle flaming swords – it can be done, but it's not easy.

Soundcraft Signature 22MTK: A Creative Beast

Packs Punch in Creativity

Imagine having 22 arms and being able to play all instruments in your band at once. That's what it feels like using the Soundcraft Signature 22MTK. This recording console offers outstanding creative capabilities with the ability to record up to 22 tracks simultaneously, changing the game for live recordings.

Is There Such Thing as Too Much Warmth?

Analog Sound Galore

The sound quality from this analog mixer is like being wrapped in a super soft plush blanket – warm and comforting. It delivers a balanced frequency range that makes your audio feel like it just had a spa day. Plus, Soundcraft support deserves some love – they've been more helpful than an espresso shot on a Monday morning.

No Beginner's Luck Here

A Steep Learning Curve

This sound mixing console isn't for rookies; setting it up with Windows is comparable to solving Rubik's cube blindfolded. The manual is about as helpful as sunglasses at night, making the initial experience less “plug-and-play” and more “plug-and-pray”.

Impressive Functionality with Some Quality Concerns

A Few Hits and Misses

The routing capabilities of the 22MTK are more impressive than a magician pulling a rabbit out of a hat. But, it's not all rainbows and unicorns. Channel one already has low gain and a mysterious hum, which is worrisome for a piece of studio equipment that hasn't seen much use. It's like buying a new car and finding out it has an oil leak.

Conclusion: The Victor Emerges

The Winner Takes it All

Alright, drumroll, please! After careful consideration, the clear winner here is the Behringer Xenyx X1204USB. This USB mixer offers great value for money with reliable performance despite its limitations. It's like the underdog that gives you more bang for your buck. Meanwhile, the Soundcraft Signature 22MTK, while excellent in its creative capabilities, can be a head-scratcher for beginners and has raised some concerns about long-term reliability. So there you have it folks – in the battle of Behringer vs Soundcraft, Behringer takes home the trophy!