M-Audio – ProjectMix I/O Control Surface2019-01-02T21:39:00+00:00

Project Description

ProjectMix I/O Control Surface


Industrial Design, Mechanical Engineering, User Experience, Consumer

Background and Challenges

Musicians and producers increasingly record more professional music at home. M-Audio wanted to take advantage of this opportunity. So, the leading music electronics manufacturer retained Nectar to develop the ProjectMix I/O Control Surface, a streamlined, easy-to-use digital studio mixer.

Streamlining Studio Production

Development of the digital ProjectMix I/O Control Surface presented Nectar with several challenges. The mixer needed to deliver studio recording quality in a computer-based environment, seamlessly integrate with and record to all major digital audio workstation (DAW) software, provide a tactical mixing experience similar to studio controls, and create on-board displays of critical recording parameters to support intuitive operation. Because many competing units have a dizzying number of controls that are daunting to users, Nectar had to streamline ProjectMix operation to take digital recording to the next level.

Motorized Faders, the Keyboard, and the Mouse

Nectar met the challenge by fully evaluating requirements for the ProjectMix I/O control surface and delivering intelligent solutions. The design team carefully considered what features would provide the most value in an affordable package and chose the best control configuration for executing different functions.

For example, they utilized high-resolution 10-bit touch-sensitive motorized faders so that producers can feel the mix with their fingertips and a jog/scrub wheel-based dedicated transport controls for seamless session flow, while streamlining other functions that are better suited to control by a keyboard or mouse.

Concept Sketches

An Easy-to-Use Breakthrough in Digital Mixing Technology

The ProjectMix I/O Control Surface provides eight analog input channels with individual mic/line switches and phantom power for up to eight condenser microphones. The mixer also serves as a MIDI interface; includes an information-rich LCD display; supports connections to monitors, processors, and mixdown devices; and connects to a computer via FireWire. With the ProjectMix I/O Control Surface, Nectar delivered a streamlined computer-based studio production mixer that represents a real breakthrough in digital mixing technology. The controller has a shorter learning curve, is much more intuitive to use, and comes at an unbeatable price when compared to other units on the market.