Review: Aviom A360 Personal Monitor Mixer
New personal monitor mixer provides channel-level controls like volume, mute, group, solo, plus reverb, tone, pan, and stereo spread.
Before the new Aviom A360 personal mixer, there was the Aviom A16ii. It was my favorite piece of stage gear back when I was a worship musician. I’d put in my in-ears, set my mix, and be ready to play. That was long before the market was filled with personal mixing options. Opening up the box with the new Aviom A360 mixer, I was eager to see how Aviom has advanced its personal mixing unit.SpecificationsThe A360, priced at $799, is the new cornerstone of the Aviom personal monitor mixing system. As a personal mixer, it provides channel-level controls as well as overall mix-level controls. Channel-level controls include volume, mute, group, solo, and tonal controls. Tonal controls include reverb, tone, pan, and stereo spread (for use on stereo channels). Mix-wide controls include bass, treble, master volume, and “Enhance.” Per Aviom, “The EQ curve for Enhance was developed specifically with the frequency response of in-ear monitors and headphones in mind.”The mixer has a 36-channel mix engine that supports 16 mono or stereo mix channels. The 16 channel assignments can be set up on a per-mixer basis, via an easy-to-use program and a USB drive, so musicians pick the input channels they need, from up to 64 inputs, and assign the channels where they want. I would have liked a front-end system so, as a tech, could personally customize all of the A360s and pushed out the configurations to each unit. Based on iOS support, which I’ll cover later, this functionality is coming soon. Optionally, the A360 can receive and route the 16 channels as directly fed from the source.The A360 is designed for driving a pair of in-ears but does offer a mono-mixed output for driving an XLR-connected floor monitor. Stereo mix outs are also present in both ¼-inch and 1/8-inch for connecting to a wireless in-ear system.SetupConfiguring an Aviom system starts by connecting either an analog audio mixer to an AN-16/I v2 input unit or equipping a digital mixer with an Aviom16/o-Y1 card. This process converts the audio output channels into Aviom’s A-Net system. These units are then connected, via Ethernet cable, to a stage-located A-Net distributor that connects to the A360 personal mixers. The distributor can be an A16D Pro or the new D800.The D800 distributor comes in two forms: the standard D800 and the D800/Dante for use in Dante-networked systems. The D800 provides more digital channels for the A360, up to 48, as well as network mix back functionality so an A360’s mix can be sent elsewhere in the system. This means engineers can hear what the musician hears and help with mix problems. Up to eight mix backs can be sent through the D800. In the case of the D800/Dante, the unit connects to a Dante audio network for the audio source, instead of an Aviom input device. Another feature of the D800 is it can be connected to a wireless router for A360 iOS support coming in 2014.