Device Reviewed With: new iPad, iPhone 4
Integration with iPad/iPhone Rating:
Hardware Design Rating:
Re-Use Value Rating:
The iRig Mix is a multichannel DJ hardware device that lets users connect up to two iOS devices at once. It also features an extra guitar or microphone input, allowing musicians to use it with other IK Multimedia apps like Amplitube or VocaLive. As with any iOS hardware peripheral, the quality of a device like this comes down to two main areas: the hardware build and the software that it can be used with.
Hardware-wise, the DJ Mix box is fairly solid feeling, and works well to split the audio signal from one or two different iOS sources, as well as an alternate music source like an MP3 or CD player. The top face of the device, where all the action happens, has what you’d expect from a small, two channel mixer, with a master volume control, channel gain knobs, bass and treble knobs for each channel, vertical volume sliders and a horizontal channel selection slider. It also includes a Cue button to listen only to one specific track, as well as signal amplitude lights, and a power light. The iRig Mix is powered via micro-USB, and comes with a wall charger, which must always be plugged in as there are no batteries.
The options are controlled via hardware buttons as well, including whether the input is one device or two, and whether users need X-Sync, a way to synchronize the audio tempo from a second iOS device or alternate audio source. There are two 1/8 inch ports for iOS devices, and two 1/4 inch ports for mic/guitar and headphones. It’s surprising that the headphone jack is the larger size, as most users will have headphones with a smaller 1/8 inch connector.
The sound quality of the box seems a bit on the low side, though that could be affected by the type and quality of audio connector and/or software used with the box. I found the same lower quality sound, however, via the headphone jack as well as the RCA audio out port; I wouldn’t use this in a professional setting, but it’s good enough for parties.
The software I tested the device with, DJ Rig, is a great app to try out dual-audio mixing with. The app recognizes the setting on the iRigMix for single or dual devices, and splits the audio output to the Mix box as specified. There’s a portrait and landscap interface, allowing users to mix, scratch, and add effects easily as they prefer. It allows for the importing of audio tracks, synchronization of tempo, and the like – all standard for the turntable style DJing. I was surprised to find that the app is iPhone only – seems like a Universal app would make more sense.
All in all, the iRig Mix is a decent prosumer-level two channel mixer that can be used with several music apps from IK Multimedia and others. The hardware quality is good enough for amateur use, and the downloadable apps work well with it.