The Yamaha N8 Digital Mixing Studio is a mixing console with an analog-like mixing interface which boasts ease of operation for professional quality recording and mixdown.
Connecting a computer to the mixer's IEEE 1394 port enables you to configure an ideal recording environment with seamless integration into Cubase 4. The mixer can handle up to 8 channel inputs, mixing them to stereo outputs and the 16 in/out FireWire connection to record them in a DAW. Each monaural input jack features an XLR jack with a phantom power supply and a newly developed compressor that adopts Sweet Spot Morphing technology with various compressor presets.
One input supports Hi-Z input for direct connection of an electric guitar or bass. All input channels feature a full 3-band (high/mid/low) equalizer and share a built-in digital reverb. With Cubase AI 4 a special version of Cubase 4 is included in the package so that you are ready to plug in and record.
Ease of operation
Analog-like mixing interface enables you to bring your sonic imagery into reality. The mixer can handle up to 12 channel inputs mixing them to stereo outputs. Each monaural input jack features an phone and XLR jack with a phantom power supply, which enables you to connect a wide range of instruments and devices, from condenser microphones to synthesizers and other line-level instruments. Input channel 4 supports Hi-Z input for direct connection of an electric guitar or bass.
Computer connection via a single IEEE 1394 cable
A single cable can do the trick. Connect a computer with an IEEE 1394 port to the n8 using an IEEE 1394 cable to transfer audio and MIDI signals between the mixer and Cubase or other DAW.
Link with Cubase
Install Cubase 4 (Cubase 4, Cubase Studio 4, or Cubase AI 4) on the computer, and the N8 will link to Cubase and operate together seamlessly. For example, you can record the N8 input signals to Cubase as is, or mix Cubase audio tracks on the n8. You can also turn on and off the monitor for the VST effects or control the transport section and tracks remotely from the n8.
Your sound is your musical identity, and you want it to come through with maximum impact. The gear you use to record and produce your music must not only sound good, but it must keep your musical identity intact while allowing you to enhance and shape the sound without degrading the quality of the initial input in any way.
Sweet spot morphing compressor
Great mixes begin with a great preamp
Almost invariably, your sound - your art - will start out as an analog signal. Whether it's your voice, sax, guitar, piano, or even most electronic keyboards, you'll be feeding an analog signal to the mixer, where it encounters one of the most critical elements in the entire signal chain: the microphone/line preamplifier. The preamplifier amplifies the low-level output from microphones and conditions line-level signals so that they can be converted to digital information via the mixer's analog-to-digital converters, and unless absolute signal purity and integrity is maintained, you will lose some of the quality you've worked so hard to achieve. Yamaha has gone to extremes in the N-series mixer to create preamplifiers that will make the most of the music you feed them. In addition to a specially-tuned class-A discrete configuration that implements an inverted Darlington circuit design for exceptional musicality and low distortion, these outstanding preamplifiers employ custom-manufactured capacitors that contribute to sonic resolution you'll have to hear to believe.
Bass comes through with the punch and authority it needs to support the music, smooth highs deliver a natural sense of openness and air, and outstanding midrange resolution means extraordinary musical detail. These are not average production-line preamplifiers, and you will hear the difference.
Switchable phantom power
If you're serious about your sound - especially for vocals or acoustic instruments - you'll undoubtedly want to use studio-quality phantom-powered condenser microphones for the extended range and natural reproduction they provide. The N8 is fully compatible, with switchable built-in phantom power.
Hi-Z input for direct guitar or bass recording
Direct connect to a wide range of sources
The N-series consoles provide both balanced XLR connectors and balanced TRS phone jacks on all mono input channels for direct connectivity with the widest possible range of input sources. The stereo inputs have both unbalanced RCA pin jack and phone jack pairs. All mono inputs also feature TRS insert jacks that can be used to insert external signal processors into the signal path of the corresponding channel.
Not all guitar and bass recording situations required amps, microphones, and a soundproof studio. You can conveniently connect an electric guitar or bass directly to the B input of channel 4 on the n8 and engage the input Hi-Z switch for optimum matching and sound.
One of the marks of a great engineer is his or her ability to quickly set up compression and EQ that enhance the music, drawing on experience acquired over many years and countless studio sessions. The N8 includes a newly developed compressor that adopts Sweet Spot Morphing technology. The mixer provides various compressor presets that represent the condensation of extensive professional engineering experience. Your sound can be at pro level instantly with an easy operation. Use the Morph control to select from the different compressor settings (or morphed settings between them) and the Drive control to determine the amount of compression.
Effective musical EQ
Like compression, artful EQ can dramatically enhance a mix in many ways. The N-series equalizers have been created through an extensive study of the most musical and desirable consoles used by leading artists and engineers throughout the world. They offer a finely-balanced and dynamic relationship between EQ curve, frequency ranges, and other factors that give you truly musical control. 3-band equalizers with sweepable midrange on each channel deliver totally satisfying, potent EQ control that can take your music to a higher level.
Digital reverb at your service
Yamaha's Rev-X digital reverb algorithm is renowned for its high resolution and extraordinarily natural sound. The N-series consoles offer this leading technology built in. You have a choice of hall, room, and plate reverb simulations with reverb time and level control. This superlative reverb processor can be used for wet monitoring while recording as well as for adding ambience during final mixdown.
Use Aux Send 1 to route the channel's signal to the Aux bus. Use this control when you are sending a mix monitoring signal to the musicians.
The Pan control determines the stereo position of the monaural input channel. Stereo Input channels feature a Balance control which determines the volume balance between the left and right stereo channels. Odd channel signals are fed to the L bus, and even channel signals are fed to the R bus. For example, rotate the Balance control all the way to right to output only the even (right) channel signals.
Soloing and muting
The Solo switch turns the Solo function on and off. Turn this switch on, if you want to listen to certain channels without changing the mix contents or signal path.
Use the On switch to turn each channel on and off (muting). When the switch is turned off, the channel signal will be sent only to the AUX bus.
Each input channel features a 60mm fader volume control, each equipped with a input meter consisting of four LEDs.
Use the REC and the ST switches to route the channels signal either to the recording bus and/or the stereo bus.
With the Wet Switch you can determine if you want to hear the dry input signal from the analog input of the channel or the wet signal coming back from the computer, processed by VST effects or such.
Control Room monitoring function
If you can't hear exactly what you're recording or mixing, it can be difficult if not impossible to achieve the intended results. The N-series consoles feature a remarkably well-equipped monitoring section that gives you broad, flexible monitor selection and control.
Dimmer and mute switches
DAW remote control function
These handy functions are normally only found on large studio consoles, but you'll be glad Yamaha has included them on the N8. As you'd expect, the mute switch mutes or un-mutes the console's output, while the dimmer switch reduces the output to a level that is still audible but allows conversation or phone calls. The advantage of the dimmer switch is that you can simply tap it a second time and be precisely back at optimum monitoring level without having to reset faders or level controls.
This section features switches to remotely control the basic functions of the DAW software connected to the n8. Transport controls, track select controls, controls to engage the recording status, and others.
The N8 supports two different modes of the way it works together with the connected DAW: In the Stereo Mix mode the n8 will monitor the Stereo Output from the DAW. The Hardware Mix mode enables you to mix the audio tracks from the DAW through the hardware of the n8.
Although it can be used as a stand-alone mixing console, the n8 has been specifically designed to deliver maximum creative control and production power with the bundled Cubase AI4 software. In addition to a powerful set of software tools that expand the mixer's recording and production capabilities, Cubase AI4 features a range of MIDI sequencing capabilities, an entire suite of VST effect plug-ins, and a Hation One sample player with a range of samples. The hardware and software components of this extraordinary production system work in seamless harmony to take you from concept to completion with intuitive ease.
Easy installation and setup
A streamlined installer makes installing the CUBASE AI software on your Macintosh or Windows PC quick and easy. Once the software has been installed all you need to do is connect the n8 or n12 mixer to your computer's IEEE 1394 (FireWire) port via a single cable and you're ready to record! When you do sit down to start work, Cubase gives you a selection of predefined project templates for the n8 and n12 from which to choose. The templates make most of the time-consuming initial settings for you, so you can get down to the business of making music while you and your ideas are still fresh.
Tight integration keeps you focused and in control
The N-series consoles and Cubase software are so nicely integrated that most of the control you'll need while recording is available right from the console. You have track selection capability as well as full transport control including record arming, cycling and marker placement/location. A monitor remote switch lets you process the input channel and record bus signals with reverb and VST effects supplied by the software, and WET switches make it simple to set up wet monitoring while recording. There's even a remote on/off switch for the software's click (metronome) function. It's all right at your fingertips.
Dry or wet monitoring control
It depends on the artist, but many would rather monitor themselves with effects such as the excellent VST distortion, phaser and other effects provided with the Cubase software (otherwise known as wet monitoring). It's much easier to play with feeling if you can hear the sound of your voice or instrument pretty much as it will sound when recorded, and this is particularly important for instruments such as guitar or keyboards that are often recorded direct to the console.
Setting up for wet monitoring can be tricky and tedious with standard consoles and software, but the n8 and n12 have dedicated switches that let you monitor dry or wet with the VST effects provided by the DAW software applied to any specified track. Where you'd normally have to interrupt the creative flow to make the required connections and settings, the n-series mixers let you keep the music happening. Just one more N-factor that can contribute to inspired performances.