Estimated reading time for this article: 3 minutes

We have talked about the SSL SiX Channel a few weeks ago. The Company has released the console SSL Big SiX.

While waiting for one of it for an in depth test, let’s talk about the features offered to configure SSL Big SiX.

Big SiX Angle view
The SSL BiG SiX console

The sentence “configure BiG SiX” has to be meant as to explore the possibilities offered by the equipment to easily adapt its configuration to follow the producer’s needs without any patching.

BiG SiX is a mixer with several routings to chose from, is a monitor controller and a 16×16 USB audio interface. Let’s see how to use all those possibilities to make easier the life in a home or project studio. Go to the Milk Store for a list of features and functions. We shall dedicate the required attention to this topic in one of the next posts.

The BiG SiX SSL design

How to Configure BiG SiX: the mono channel strips

The not so hidden secret of this console is that every single function has its own switch.

In the four mono channel strips the Superanalogue preamp has a very clean Mic input and a wideband Line input. One can switch between the two and connect a coloured Mic preamp to the Line input to have both options available.

The preamps (either one) can take advance of the built in Eq and Comp or use the Insert line to connect external outboard to complement the available choices.

The inserted hardware could be, for instance, of the same brand of the connected preamp so to allow two different channel strips to be used. A combination from all those processors is always realizable thanks to the switching capability oh the channels.

Every channel has also a couple of stereo send bus to be used for monitoring or external effects such as delay or reverbs. Moving from tracking to mixing (via the included USB interface) you just need to press the dedicated button. Every channel is also connected to a USB input so it can be used also as an hardware plugin.

The SSL BiG SiX Control Panel
The SSL BiG SiX Control Panel

How to Configure BiG SiX: the stereo channels

Stereo channels don’t have neither insert nor compressors. The equalizer can be activated with its own switch.

They are four and can be used (other than for normal mixing) to mix stems coming from the DAW taking advantage of the analog summing and master bus processing.

Here one switch allows for going from tracking to mixing and the Line input can be configured as Dual Mono to connect even more preamps.

The stereo channels 11/12 and 13/14 can be “sacrified” to have the two send channels directed to the DAW to use the available Delays and Reverbs.

How to Configure BiG SiX: the Master Bus

Also the Master Bus can be used to configure SSL BiG SiX in several ways. Two more inputs can be added to the analog sum (Ext1 ed Ext2).

The G Bus Compressor can be activated or routed to feed the first of the stereo sends.

The compressor’s output, with this option, gets routed in parallel to the summing amp in order to allow parallel compression.

Parallel compression is also achieavable via an external compressor connected to the Bus B.

Signals are routed (and summed) to the Bus B if the channels are muted. Simple and effective.

Last but not least, the stereo insert complements the master bus options to include esternal hardware to the processing. If you are thinking to SSL Fusion you are right!

Conclusion

Well, not so bad for a console thought for the home and project studios. Give us the time to test it out and we shall also let you know about its sound!

Sono un ingegnere elettronico con la passione per la musica ed il suono. Mi sono avvicinato alla musica da autodidatta (salvo una breve parentesi alla University of the Blues di Dallas) e ho suonato nei peggiori locali italiani (con casuali puntate all'estero). Ho costruito la mia prima radio FM appena finita la terza media. Ho continuato con amplificatori a valvole e transistor fino ad arrivare alla produzione di circuiti integrati. Collaboro da anni con varie riviste (cartacee e web) di musica nelle quali mi occupo di recensioni di strumenti musicali e sistemi per l'elaborazione del suono. Trovate le mie pubblicazioni su Accordo (accordo.it), la rivista Chitarre (dal 2010 al 2015) e su Audio Central Magazine (audiocentralmagazine.com). Produco musica da un po' nello NTFC Studio che serve sostanzialmente per le produzioni di NTFC Band.