If you’ve run upscale live sound anytime in the past 40 years, then you know Midas’s reputation for creating top-quality full-sized consoles. The M32 digital mixing desk brings cutting-edge Midas innovation to the world of medium-format consoles. Loaded with 32 premium Midas preamps, 25 time-aligned and phase-coherent DSP mix buses, brilliant DSP processing and routing, and massive expansion options, the M32 is an ideal foundation for moderate venues and professional touring rigs. Add to that a sense of ergonomics that makes it one of the easiest digital boards to get around, and there’s no wonder the M32 is one of the most popular mixers of its class we’ve ever seen.
Live sound pros have long considered Midas preamps the gold standard in sound reinforcement. There’s a good reason international legends such as Pink Floyd, the Beach Boys, and Billy Joel were among the early adopters of Midas boards. In over 40 years, that reputation hasn’t faded. When you hear the sound of the M32’s preamps at work, you’ll know any mix you create will start off with premium sound. Their high common-mode rejection ratio and low harmonic distortion produce impressive transparency. But Midas’s analog technology isn’t the only thing special about the M32’s sound. All the on-board I/O features the same Cirrus Logic converters found in many respected studio interfaces. What’s more, the DSP at the heart of this board uses a 40-bit floating-point structure for a full 112dB dynamic range.
Anyone who’s worked at a digital console knows that ergonomics play a major role in getting around the board efficiently and creating the best possible mix in the least possible amount of time. In an effort to strike a balance between form and function, Midas enlisted the talent of Rajesh Kutty, an industrial designer known for his outstanding work with Bentley Motors. The result is a sleek and stylish console that’s easy to get around. All the most important controls are front and center and in reach, while access to fader layers and deeper functions are accessible and effortless to use. The design philosophy even extends to the materials in the M32’s structure, where a combination of aluminum, steel, and carbon fiber provide superior stability while minimizing weight.
Taking full advantage of the possibilities digital mixers can provide, Midas makes advanced routing and assignments on the M32 a piece of cake. For instance, setting up a send mix is as easy as hitting the clearly labeled Fader Flip button, which puts your sends on the motorized faders. Likewise, you can assign channels to eight DCA groups for easy volume management and six mute groups, which make scene programming super easy. And thanks to the flexibility of the Assign section, you can set up 36 fully customizable controls on three easy-access layers, all labeled with digital scribble strips. And with AES50 networking and Ultranet onboard, you can integrate P16 personal monitors and expand your I/O to up to 96 channels.
Midas went back to the drawing board to develop the best motorized faders possible. These faders feature ultra-straight, high-grade steel guide rods with smooth, polished surfaces. Although they fluidly glide between fader layers, they feel substantial, providing an ideal balance of tactile response and smooth motorized operation. With their 1-million-cycle rating (three times that of other leading manufacturers), you can bet these faders will never wear out on you.
Midas developed 16 new effects processors for the M32, based on their True Physical Modeling technology. These provide spot-on emulations of classic audio processors like the Urei 1176, Teletronix LA-2A, and Fairchild 670 compressors, Pultec’s EQP-1a and EQ5 equalizers, and more. In all you’ve got more than 50 processors to work with, replacing racks full of expensive and sensitive outboard equipment. And with a total of eight stereo signal processing engines onboard, you can comfortably lay on the effects.
It’s easy to recall specific parameter settings or even entire console layouts with the M32, thanks to the innovative Cue List feature. This lets you create up to 500 Cue entries, which you can use to instantly recall any of 100 Scenes or 100 Snippets. Scenes are complete board layouts, while Snippets are parameter “snapshots” that can be recalled without affecting the rest of the scene. Whether you need to load an entirely new board layout or just recall specific EQ settings for a specific song, the M32’s Cue List makes it fast and easy.
While Midas clearly designed the M32 for professional sound reinforcement, it’s equally at home in full-scale recording studios. The previously mentioned mic pres, converters, motorized faders, routing, and onboard processing are all extremely useful for recording and mixing, but the M32’s capabilities extend even further. For simple recording, there’s a USB slot where you can plug in a flash drive, but there’s also a 32-in/32-out USB 2.0 audio interface built in, so you can connect directly to your DAW. That makes the M32 perfect for full-scale studio and recording live. If you are in the studio, then you’ll love how well the high-resolution faders work for automation via HUI or Mackie Control. Speaking of control, Wi-Fi connectivity and dedicated Midas iOS apps make everything from remote sound checks to monitor control even more convenient.