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If there is a company whose products are synonymous with rock-solid reliability, ease of use and amazing sound quality that can be acquired for the educational space, it is Mackie. I have used Mackie mixers, monitors and equipment to teach the students in my multimedia classes. Mackie products are legendary for their durability and can be found everywhere in the world of professional audio— in music recording, live performance and in the new world of content creation. 


Which products from Mackie that were used by the great engineers and recording studio facilities of the past would be a great fit for the educational space?


During my stint in the professional music recording industry as an assistant engineer, I was first introduced to Mackie products. My boss, who produced such acts as LeAnn Rimes, Hank Williams Jr. John Berry, Rodney Atkins and Trick Pony, had a Mackie mixer as the console in his personal recording studio space where we practically recorded each of the overdubs on his projects. In fact, the Mackie 1604VLZ4 mixer is a small footprint version of the same console that he had in his studio. As a media teacher, we purchased a console that was an older version of the 1604VLZ and it has performed well for more than a decade in its position as the main mixer for school programs and functions. I have a friend who is a Grammy-Award winning engineer who used a Mackie Big Knob for a time as his monitor controller in his home studio. Plus, I have used Mackie monitors for each of my projects— from content creation for my classroom to rough studio mixes during my stint in the professional music recording industry. 

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Image: The Big Knob Studio

Image courtesy-- Mackie

Mackie-- Big Knob

The Mackie Big Knob is an amazing device that would be perfect for the educational space. It functions as both an interface with excellent microphone preamps that can allow you to record pristine audio into your digital audio workstation software program in your computer and as a monitor controller for which you can even create a headphone mix to send to the musicians or performers that you may be recording. The Big Knob is truly an all-in-one desktop recording solution that has a small footprint, sounds amazing and is incredibly versatile.

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Mackie— 1604VLZ4


The Mackie 1604VLZ4 is a 16-channel, 4-bus mixing console. There are three major components of this console that make it excellent for the educational space— its great preamps, sweet-sounding equalization section and its wonderful routing flexability. Plus, this console is easy to use, built like a tank and sounds great in any setting. It is flexible enough that it could be used as a mixer for live events or programs and that it could be used in a recording space, as well. 

Image: The 1604VLZ4 console

Image courtesy-- Mackie

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Image: HR624mk2 Monitor

Image courtesy-- Mackie

Mackie— HR624mk2


The Mackie HR624mk2 is a chip off of the old block. It reminds me of the Mackie monitors that we used in the professional recording space on a number of projects. These monitors translate well from one control room to the next, and to any space in-between, as they are incredibly accurate. But, they are also portable, easy to set-up and a joy to use. Students will appreciate the simple fact that they can be placed either on their sides or upright and the logos rotate— even though this is simply cosmetic, it means that the company gets it— these amazing studio monitors are going to be used by a variety of engineers in a variety of spaces and as such, they would be perfect for the educational space. 

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Mackie— HR824mk2


I think that we could consider the slightly larger sibling of the HR624— the HR824 as a flagship monitor from Mackie for the recording studio space. As such, these monitors would be excellent for the educational space and possess all of the amazing features of their smaller siblings. Despite the fact that they are slightly larger, these speakers are also incredibly portable and very easy to both set-up and use for long periods of time.

Image: HR824mk2 Monitor

Image courtesy-- Mackie

Why should an educational institution invest in products from Mackie?


It is an easy question to answer. Mackie products have been used in the educational space successfully for a very long time. Their products are durable, easy to use, sound fantastic and are also very easy to teach. It is an added incentive that Mackie— a company which features an excellent team of engineers and designers also has an excellent service department and a global presence. However, I have never seen a Mackie product that had to be serviced and I have used them around kindergarten students! Mackie products tend to be a bargain in the world of professional music recording, but do not let their lower prices fool you. If you purchase a product with the Mackie name on it, it will last you for a lifetime of high-quality use. 


If you would like more information about Mackie and the amazing products that were discussed in this article, please use the following links which are listed below.


Mackie— Big Knob

Mackie— 1604VLZ4

Mackie— HR624

Mackie— HR824


The following link will take you to the Mackie website where you can learn more about this legendary corporation and also, find an authorized dealer for their fabulous products in your area.




Special Note: Each of the images in this article appear through the courtesy and generosity of the wonderful people at Mackie.


Special Thanks— At The Recording Session Vault Educational Website Project, we would like to take a moment to express our thanks and appreciation to Rob Puzzitiello at Mackie for his time and assistance with this article. 

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