Allen & Heath ZED-14 14 Channel Mixer with EQs and USB This is a mixer for anyone, from entry-level to professionals, who appreciates fantastic sound, rugged build quality and imaginative feature sets. It'll be equally happy running your gig on stage, recording live or mixing down in your studio at home.
The feature-set is incredibly advanced for a mixer at this level - it has 13 independent sources to the mix, 10 independent outputs, 4 aux sends, a USB send & return for PC or Mac recording, playback and effects, a unique dual stereo input capability and some very advanced monitoring facilities. In fact, ZED-14 is so packed full of great features that you'd think it would cost much, much more!
It can be used for many different tasks, whether in live performance, utilizing plug-in effects via USB, live recording via USB and Cakewalk, studio recording or mixing down to produce your own 2-track recordings.
What about the sound quality? Aleen and Heath's chief designer, Mike Griffin, has been at the forefront of audio innovation for many years and has developed the designs for our spectacularly successful MixWizard and GL series professional live mixers. Mike is always striving to produce the best possible sound for our mixers, and for ZED has produced the 'DuoPre™', a mic preamplifier which sounds as sweet as a nut, as pure as the driven snow. The DuoPre™ combines an optimised line input circuit together with the microphone preamp circuit so that it will not colour or distort your sound, will give you lots of headroom and give you a truly professional feel.
One of the great things about the ZED series is the number and variety of things you can plug in. In addition to the six mono channels there are four stereo channels, each with a main stereo input on jack sockets, and with the ability to take additional stereo inputs from phono sockets or from the USB audio input, flexibility gives you control. In all, ZED-14 boasts 99 different controls on its front panel - way more than any of the competition! 6 mic/line channels are provided on ZED-14 - plenty for mics or DI boxes for a small band, duo or solo performer 4 stereo line inputs - dual inputs, both with gain and 2-band EQ
Based on the proven pre-amps from the hugely successful PA series, the ZED series has new DuoPreTM pre-amps, which use a two stage design, with carefully controlled amounts of gain in each stage. When amplifying the signal from the XLR input, the gain range is huge - 69dB of range to be exact - and is very evenly distributed around the gain control, meaning better control of signal level. Most of the gain comes from the first stage, so unwanted noise is kept to a minimum. Line level signals are simply plugged into the second stage of the pre-amp by using the line input jack socket, which has the great advantage of less noise when using the line input.
ZED-14 features a responsive 3-band, swept mid frequency design with MusiQ - optimised slope (or Q factor) for equalising individual instruments. HF and LF also boast Xtra Boost, to make these frequencies more responsive.
4 aux sends are provided, of which 1&2 are prefade for foldback monitoring, and 3 & 4 post-fade for effects sends. A stereo signal can be sent from auxes via USB to computer to create 2 separate record feeds independent of the main LR mix (1&2) and or used as FX sends (3&4).
USB audio flexibility
Getting audio to and from a computer easily is now a common requirement for live sound and music production. The way we have implemented this on ZED is super-flexible and super-easy! No longer do you need to fiddle around the back of your PC to get to the soundcard inputs, only to find that the levels are all wrong and noisy. Just plug in a USB lead to your ZED, select the USB routing on the mixer and the device on your computer and that's it! Quality audio to and from your PC or Mac. Three switches provide different send/return configurations for recording, playback and utilising external FX (reverb, delay,..) with your computer software!
At this level, most mixers are built using a single, flat PCB with all the pots and switches attached at right angles. ZED-14 utilises individual vertically mounted channel circuit boards with each rotary control fixed with a metal nut to the front panel - making a much more robust product that will resist damage and give years of reliable use. ZED also has professional 100mm faders for ultimate control over your levels.
SONAR LE - provided Free!
Allen and Heath have teamed up with Cakewalk to bundle SONAR LE with this ZED mixer. The two team up together in many ways - for example straightforward recording of a stereo mix, recording tracks individually to build up a song, or for inserting a SONAR LE effects plug-in.
- 4 mic/line channels
- 4 Dual Source stereo channels
- 2 Telco channels
- HPF and 3-band, swept mid EQ on mono channels
- 2-band EQ on stereo channels
- Variable high pass / low pass filters on Telco channels
- Smooth-ride 100mm faders
- 2-stage, padless pre-amp design
- Fader-start sensing on mono channels
- Start/cue logic outputs on stereo channels
- External meter socket
- Separate headphones mix for engineer/producer and 2 guests
- Auto mutes on control room outputs
- Remote mute facility on mic channels
- Configurable USB stereo audio in/out
- Audition bus for auditioning and off-air recording
- Aux and separate stereo busses for processing/recording
- XLR main outputs with inserts
- Input signal and peak metering