Behringer XR18 Vs. Tascam DP 32SD : 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 XR18 vs. Tascam DP 32SD.

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 XR18 and Tascam DP 32SD. 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 XR18

This is another mixer I got hold of just to review. It has a semi-hefty price-tag but what I will say is this: the Behringer XR18 is a unit that delivers far more than its price suggests. After several months of continuous use, I've faced zero reliability issues, making it a standout in its category.

Unbeatable Feature Set for the Price

The XR18's feature set is its biggest selling point. There's a wealth of options here that you'd struggle to find in other mixers within this price range. The audio quality is top-notch, and the control options are extensive. It's particularly great for those who need comprehensive control in a live setting or a studio environment.

Minor Downsides

Despite its strengths, there are a few areas where the XR18 could improve. One noticeable absence is the ability to do time-alignment, a feature available in the higher-class X32. There's also the matter of the built-in Wi-Fi, which can be a bit unreliable in live situations. I always ensure a hard-wired connection during critical events to avoid any potential connectivity issues. Lastly, there's a bit of a learning curve when switching between the software interfaces on different platforms, like iPad and computer.

Robust Software and Solid Hardware

The software is robust, offering comprehensive control over the unit, albeit with some platform-specific quirks. Hardware-wise, the unit feels solid and well-built, suitable for regular gigging.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, if you need a feature-rich mixer and the XR18 ticks all your boxes, go for it. It's an excellent investment, especially considering its price point. Sure, it has a couple of minor drawbacks, but these are easily outweighed by its overall performance and reliability. Whether for live use, studio work, or even podcasting, the XR18 is a versatile choice that won't disappoint.

Tascam DP-32SD Digital Portastudio

Now the Tascam DP-32SD, let me draw some comparisons to its cousin, the DP-24SD, and delve into what makes it stand out. The DP-32SD steps up the game with its enhanced preamps and 32-track recording capability, minus the hard drive noise, since it runs on an SDHC card.

Key Features:

First off, think of the DP-32SD as a 20-track recorder with 8 mono tracks and 12 additional stereo or mono tracks. The absence of MIDI and S/PDIF inputs (found in its predecessor, the Tascam 2488Neo) might limit some, but it's not a deal-breaker for those focused on analog inputs. Its punch-in and out functions are tight, and the layout of the menu and LED buttons has been thoughtfully improved from the Neo model.

Tascam DP 32SD Review

Recording Quality

The recording quality is a massive win for the DP-32SD. Users rave about the stellar job it does, especially in multi-musician setups. With its ability to record at 24bit 48kHz without clicks, pops, or stutters, it’s a reliable choice for those seeking to avoid the complexities of a DAW.

Usability and Workflow

In terms of workflow, this machine is a powerhouse. For those who prefer to record up to 8 tracks simultaneously without a PC or MAC and don’t need MIDI sync, the DP-32SD is your go-to. It’s great for live band recordings too, being easily portable and capable of handling numerous simultaneous inputs.

Learning Curve

There’s a learning curve, especially if you're transitioning from a simpler recorder or a different brand. However, with resources like YouTube tutorials, you can get up to speed relatively quickly.

Build Quality

The build quality of the DP-32SD is impressive. It feels heavy and sturdy, indicative of a machine built to last. Though some knobs might feel a bit flimsy, this doesn’t detract from the overall solid construction of the unit.

Integration with DAW

While it's primarily a standalone recorder, the ease of transferring files to a DAW for further editing and mixing is a major plus. It's an excellent solution for those looking to blend analog recording with digital editing.

Head 2 Head: Behringer XR18 or Tascam DP 32SD

Alright, let's dive into the deep tech waters of audio interfaces and digital mixers. First off, we're going to examine the Behringer XR18. This versatile piece of studio equipment has caused quite a stir among sound engineering enthusiasts, and for good reason.

Behringer XR18: The Jack of All Trades

This is not just your run-of-the-mill digital mixer. The Behringer XR18 is a multitrack recorder that offers an unbeatable feature set for its price range. With high-quality audio, extensive control options, and robust software, it’s a reliable companion for live sound mixing or home studio recording. Got Some Quirks Though

Okay, so it's not perfect. There's no ability to do time-alignment (found in the big brother X32), and the built-in Wi-Fi is somewhat like that flaky friend who shows up when they feel like it. As such, a hard-wired connection during critical events is advised to avoid any “Uh-oh” moments. Despite these quirks, this USB interface is solidly built and provides outstanding performance considering its price point. However, be prepared for a bit of digital gymnastics when switching between the software interfaces on different platforms.

Next up in our ring of recording equipment is the Tascam DP-32SD. This portable recorder might come off as an intimidating piece of music production gear at first glance but stick with me here.

Tascam DP-32SD: The Analog Aficionado’s Dream

This 32-track digital Portastudio takes analog inputs seriously. It lacks MIDI and S/PDIF inputs, which could be a bummer for some, but the punch-in and out functions are tight, and the menu layout has been improved significantly from previous models.

Recording Quality

The recording quality of this mixing console is superb. It records at 24bit 48kHz without clicks, pops, or stutters. It’s like having an extra band member who never misses a beat.

Usability and Workflow

In terms of workflow, this machine is a rockstar. If you're the kind of person who prefers to record up to 8 tracks simultaneously without a PC or MAC, then the Tascam DP-32SD will be your new best friend. Plus it's perfect for live band recordings too – just grab it and go!

The Learning Curve is Real

Fair warning – there's a learning curve if you're transitioning from a simpler recorder or different brand. But hey, with YouTube tutorials aplenty, you'll be up to speed in no time.

Build Quality

This machine feels heavy-duty and built to last. Some knobs might feel slightly flimsy but don't let that fool you; the overall construction is solid as a rock.

Integration with DAW

Even though it's primarily a standalone recorder, the ease of transferring files to a DAW for further editing and mixing is like icing on the cake. Alright folks, we've broken down both contenders in our audio mixing showdown. After some tough considerations (and maybe an espresso shot or two), I'm ready to declare our champion: The Behringer XR18! While both these pieces of recording equipment offer great value, the Behringer XR18's superior versatility and comprehensive control options make it the winner. Yes, it's got a few minor downsides, but they're overshadowed by its overall performance and reliability. Whether you're a live sound engineer, a podcast host, or a home studio enthusiast, the Behringer XR18 is your go-to audio interface. It's truly an all-rounder that refuses to disappoint!