Teenage Engineering, the corporate behind ultra-stylish synthesizers, speakers, and PC cases, has launched a brand new audio gadget: it’s known as the TX-6, and it’s a tiny (in measurement, not value) subject mixer completely festooned with knobs. Along with letting you combine collectively sound from six stereo inputs and output them to a pc, speaker, or each, in true Teenage Engineering style, the TX-6 may also act as a primary synthesizer, drum sequencer, and USB-C audio interface.
We gotta speak about these knobs first although. By default they act as controls for a three-band equalizer, letting you tweak the highs, mids, and lows for every enter. However a peek at Teenage Engineering’s guide reveals the tons of different issues you are able to do with them, from controlling compressor settings to adjusting pan or notice size. No matter you utilize them for, you’ll be doing it in type; the knobs are colourful and knurled on the high, which ought to enable you grip one thing that’s in any other case roughly the dimensions of a giant Q-Tip.
If you happen to can tear your eyes away from the knobs, the remainder of the controls are additionally completely mint. You’ve obtained fader sliders (that are arguably extra essential than the knobs as a result of they really allow you to combine), a bevy of buttons, in addition to a combo button / knob for navigating menus — be nonetheless my coronary heart. There are additionally LED quantity meters, with controllable brightness.
By way of I/O, the TX-6 has these six audio jacks for enter (Apple may by no means), and three output jacks; two are 3.5 mm for aux and cue out, and the primary output is 6.35 mm, or a quarter-inch. It’s additionally obtained a built-in battery, which Teenage Engineering says is sweet for round eight hours of use, and fees through the USB-C port that additionally handles connecting the TX-6 to your system. That may be a pc or an iPhone / iPad, when you’ve obtained an applicable cable or adapter. Once more, all of this, plus these scrumptious knobs, are packed into one thing that has a completely tiny package deal.
By the way in which, sure I can hear everything of the UK snickering that I’m once again talking about my love of knobs. You don’t must remark about it, my sides nonetheless harm from studying all of the jokes on the final article. However come on, simply have a look at them.
After all, I don’t need to sleep on the opposite components of this design — it’s obtained a CNC aluminum body, an lovable little display screen to indicate you menus, and synthetic leather-based backing. To me, it appears to be like somewhat like an old-school Sony system, however taken up a notch.
Hey, truly, Teenage Engineering says the knobs are customizable. I’m certain there’s some parameter you may management with them that goes to 11…
Talking of going previous the higher restrict, let’s speak in regards to the value. The TX-6 prices — deep breath now — $1,199. That’s for the precise unit itself, together with a 3.5 mm adapter for the primary output, and a USB-C cable. Additional cables, like a 3.5 mm to RCA or dual-TS adapter, will price an inexpensive $10 or $15.
Whereas that value is sort of unbelievable, I struggled to think about another gadgets just like the TX-6. The $150 Yamaha MG06X is compact, but it surely’d be laborious to name it small, and it actually doesn’t look as cool, in my view. The $350 Zoom H6 may be configured to have the identical variety of inputs, but it surely’s considerably bulkier and is nowhere close to as feature-rich because the TX-6. Plus, when you may use it as a mixer, it’s undoubtedly extra of a subject recorder. The Mackie MCaster Live is even inexpensive at $230 and appears to be the same measurement, but it surely doesn’t have a battery and solely has 4 inputs (although one in all them is XLR, which may come in useful if you wish to plug in a microphone).
Whereas it being in a league of its personal might or might not justify its value, the TX-6’s value might be going to show away quite a lot of DJ wannabes or music making casuals like me — although it does rely a “DJ mode” amongst its many additional options. But when I’m completely trustworthy with myself, I’d in all probability spend an embarrassing sum of money to play with one for a day, simply so I may really feel these candy, candy knobs (once more, I actually shouldn’t be posting this simply because the UK is waking up).
The TX-6 is obtainable on Teenage Engineering’s website.