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New Compact Console Fills Out Dutch Musician’s Mobile Pack

Colin Benders adds SSL BiG SiX analog console to bring more inputs for his modular synthesizer-based live rig.

Utrecht, Netherlands—Colin Benders has added an SSL BiG SiX SuperAnalogue compact mixing console and interface to his live modular synthesizer rig, which packs into just two cases when he jets off on tour.

Benders, a Dutch musician, composer and producer based in Utrecht in the Netherlands, is no stranger to SSL consoles. “I got my first SSL desk about 10 years ago, a 9000 Series,”” he says. “I’d been using SSL desks before that in a couple of mixing rooms, and I fell in love with that sound.” When SSL introduced the SiX, Benders realized it would work for his live shows, but he needed more input channels. Then SSL released the BiG SiX. “It’s a perfect match. I’m so happy with it.

​“I’d been looking for a good portable mixer that I could take with me on the road,” he continues. “I’ve had some experience with bringing mixers with me, but it always felt like there was a tradeoff between either size or sound quality. And I just got sick of everything sounding a little bit thin or tinny. But the BiG SiX is absolutely perfect.

“I have the four mono channels for my kick, snare, hi-hat and main bassline,” he continues, noting that they are generated out of his Eurorack synth system. “Then the four stereo channels are perfect for all the other tracks and effects that I’m sending out of my modular rig.”

Although Benders creates most of his effects in his synth setup, the BiG SiX comes in handy when he needs to interface with outboard processors. “I use the BiG SiX as a bridge. It gives me a lot better gain control, especially since there’s a big level difference between the Eurorack and normal line level. So I need to boost stuff up or bring it down.”

He has occasionally used the console’s inserts to put a processor across the master output bus. “I have a Stimming Instant Mastering Chain box that I take with me every now and then, which has a very nice EQ and drive. But I’ve noticed that I’ve started taking that along with me less and less because the G-Comp Buss Compressor on the BiG SiX is more than enough most of the time. I can just crank that, and it gives me everything I need.”