Mackie CFX20


Active Member
hey guys I just recently moved to Texas. and the new church i just started going to is running on a aviom monitor system with a mackie cfx20 sound board, with LTO equip(EQU231LED, CLE4.0, X-P324), Crown amps(CE1000, XLS402), Yamaha monitor and sub, with a sennheiser EW100 wireless and a audio technica aewR4100. and EAW UB42 mains.
Not too mention have any of you guys heard of a laptop maker called "lam". My real question is 1 how would u guys rate this and 2 what can be done with the current system to make it better. and any idea on the life expectancy of the mackie
The Avoim is real nice. It's a shame that you have avoim, and a CFX20. I have only used the 12, but I figure it can only get worse than that. Get rid of the Mackie.
The mackie board isn't bad. It's got some nice built in effects if you ever need that. Ours started having some troubles after about four years, but that is because there was no way to lock up our booth and people always messed with it and ate around it. Overall I would say it's a good board. Unfortunately you have to send everything through a sub to get it to the master.
AVGuyAndy said:
It's a shame that you have a CFX20. only used the 12, but I figure it can only get worse than that. Get rid of the Mackie.

Amen to that, dump that thing like a hot potato! They are usable for a while, but after three years or so the faders get really rough like cellophane. I would suggest dumping that and getting a 1604VLZ Pro and an Alesis Midiverb.
Go for a Mackie Onyx. From everything I hear, they're an amazing board and have the features and feel of a board four times as much. We just ordered a 48 channel one for our auditorium.
Well, to answer you question, it sounds like a fine setup. It really depends on the size of the church, but it sounds totally fine for a smaller church. It more how it's setup. You can really do a lot with minimal equipment if you know how it works. The big question is how does it sound to you? Are there any problems?

The cfx is a pretty useless mixer, but it's totally understandable to see it at a church or a school, considering its graphic eq and fx. Non sound people look at it and go "wow, it's got everything!" But it really is just that line, mackie in general is a fine manufacturer, especially for churches and whatnot. A 1604VLZ would probably be more useful, and is definitely of higher quality, but if the CFX is working for you, why change it?

If you are looking around for a new mixer, although you didn't say you were, the o1v sure is nice. I only suggest it though if you have someone knowledgable to operate it, as it is digital. It has the stuff that makes churches and schools happy which is a TON of onboard stuff. So no racks of costly eqs and whatnot. Plus it's quite cheap on ebay.
I think the Aviom system sounds like a really good thing. I would look into replacing the CFX if possible. The internal effects aren't that great IMO and the forced subgroup routing always bugs me when I have to use them. I don't recall how the preamps are off the top of my head but I'm guessing not that great. I haven't ever found the 7-band EQ that useful. Overall that is what I would replace first assuming the mics are okay. If the wireless mics are dropping out and what not that should be a first concern. Getting a better board won't help that problem.

A few questions I think we should know before giving too much advice are how large is this room? Does it seat 400? What instruments are in use? How are these in the system (direct, not in the system etc.). Perhaps micing the drums would help out more than a new board would.

There are a lot of things to consider when looking into getting new gear.
I recommend the Onyx series. I have the 1620, and it sounds great for a Mackie (I've had some bad experiences) I also have a DFX-12, the baby brother of the cfx you have. The onyx are perfect for what you need, at least I think so.
most of the equipment is fine except i agree with you to drop the mackie and i personally would except first im not the main tech or hired by them and ive been going there about a 2wks so my opinion doesnt count for much. but i will work on it. as i said the rest of the equipment isnt bad from what i've seen; LTO comp/limit, twin 31 band dual equ, active crossover; yamaha monitors; EAW foh,sennheiser and audio technica lapels. The only other part that i dont like is that one of their wired mics is a PVM and their lapels are just ol and cheap. but see here is the real prob is that they got a good deal on the aviom and i mean ive read up on them and i love them but i never had the privelege of working with them, and so the music leader is basically the lead of it all and so he doesnt see much of a prob with it if memory serves me right.
i just remembered the other problem is that the space is jusr right for the CFX20 so anything else thats bigger may create a prob unless i bring out a saw and start reconfiguring it
For the lapels microphones, if it's just the mic element that's bad, you can switch them out fairly cheap.
uhh know what im getting alot of flack for my dislike of mackie's. can someone explain why it is such a bad board
excellent idea soundman. the room is set up for about 230, more if they stretch it. one mic for drums set up overhead, mic for the baby grand piano, mic for piano singer, guitar, bass, two backup, one lead
whats really funky is that when i showed up the left foh was stronger than right so i looked at the amp (it was good for levels), looked at the equ's (was good as well) it wasnt until i looked at the mackie that i realized that the the subs had some on to both some off to one and on to the other so i made sure that they only had one pressed in to each and that the subs themselves were only going to one speaker. can anyone explain why i had the balance issue
I've used Mackies since I started this, so I don't find too much wrong with them. Most people I've talked to say they're not the best quality, and that the pre-amps in them are not the greatest, and with my dfx, I agree with that; they add way too much noise into the mix. I'm sure someone here who's done this longer may be able to expand on this.

Users who are viewing this thread