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ART S8 vs EWI MST412 - Mic Splitters
Old 3rd February 2009
  #1
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Question ART S8 vs EWI MST412 - Mic Splitters

Does anyone have any working experience between these two mic splitters ? Ive seen the odd bit of info on each and both seem good for the money... But id be interested to hear from anyone who has used both..

I dont have the cash to spend on the real pro solution for this but i need something better than direct out from FOH for my live recordings..

The EWI looks good but i heard it doesnt lock XLR cables on its input adaptors ? Is the situation with this as bad as it sounds ? That would serioulsy bug me if a cable came loose..

The S8 has a pad on it which may be useful, but im wondering... If you were fed a high gain line level signal off stage wouldnt it be possible to just pad the level off with the pre amps ? Or would the signal distort being so hot before the splitter ?

Im planning to get some focusrite octopre le pre amps and run optical into my HD24.. As i say im not able to spend the big bucks i just need a step up from the post insert/EQ direct outs that ive currently been taking..
Old 3rd February 2009
  #2
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
I have not used the ART splitters and I don't have my ewi splitters anymore since I stopped recording, but I was very happy with the ewi splitters, no problems at all. One consideration may be that the EWI are four channels per rackspace (3 way splits), the ART are 8 (but 2 way splits). Sound quality wise, although no direct knowledge, I am going to bet the audio performance is just about the same. But as I said, I was happy with the EWI splitters. And audiopile is so fantastic to deal with, so that may also be a consideration.
Old 3rd February 2009 | Show parent
  #3
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
did you have any problems with the connectors not locking onto the XLR properly ? Thats the main reason Im hesitant with the EWI, the extra rack space isnt too much of a problem...

Also did you record anything where the signal was too hot and a PAD would have been useful ? Or could you record anything through it without issue ? The ART offers the PAD but im just wondering if id ever need it....
Old 3rd February 2009 | Show parent
  #4
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
I have an EWI direct 16 ch splitter and I have never had a problem with the plain connectors. In fact I've never had a locking connector on anything except mics.
Some people prefer non locking. The thinking is that if a cable is pulled for some reason it's better to have it come out than pull the rack over or damage something.
I agree with mruffino, audiopile is great to work with, in fact I bet they would put locking connectors on there if you really wanted them.
Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Nut
 
E-Murder's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
ART S8

I have the ART S8's and have done tons of live recordings with them.
I would suggest them especially for the bang for the buck. The Pad and Ground lift can be very useful in situations were you are rushing to setup for whatever reasons outside of your control.

I also use the Presonus Digimax 96k's as preamps as well with the Alesis HD24...so therefore, three S8's, three Digimax 96k's and the HD24 for a contained 24 track live recording setup. Sometimes I also use an external word clock master.

I would like to try and increase my self-esteem by mentioning that in the Dec issue of TapeOp magazine I am interviewed about some of this stuff.
E
Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #6
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by E-Murder ➑️
I have the ART S8's and have done tons of live recordings with them.
I would suggest them especially for the bang for the buck. The Pad and Ground lift can be very useful in situations were you are rushing to setup for whatever reasons outside of your control.

I also use the Presonus Digimax 96k's as preamps as well with the Alesis HD24...so therefore, three S8's, three Digimax 96k's and the HD24 for a contained 24 track live recording setup. Sometimes I also use an external word clock master.

I would like to try and increase my self-esteem by mentioning that in the Dec issue of TapeOp magazine I am interviewed about some of this stuff.
E

Have you noticed much quality loss on the ISO lines ? Do you record the ISO or take the direct out ? Have you noticed anything about the S8 you dont like ?
Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
I never had a problem with any plugs coming out, but as mentioned, if it is really tugged it is probably better that it comes out anyway. They were standard XLR's and felt good from what I remember. I do think though that either way you'll do fine. Neither one is going to be a radial/ jensen splitter but either of these models will work fine.
Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Gear Nut
 
E-Murder's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by ebulb ➑️
Have you noticed much quality loss on the ISO lines ? Do you record the ISO or take the direct out ? Have you noticed anything about the S8 you dont like ?
With my older company, I used the Pro-Co splitters which I liked better sound quality wise, but if I were to buy now with a decent budget, I would go with the Radial OX8.

I have not noticed any problematic sound quality loss on the ISO outs of the S8 (a little db loss), and I record by sending the ISO outs to my recording rig. By using the ISO outs, you are able to tap into the phantom power from the Direct lines (which would goto FOH or the Monitor desk) if Microphones needing phantom are being used.

What I don't like is that the front buttons for the S8's ground and pad can be switched easily by accident, so I would have liked for them to have used switches instead of buttons. For the cost of these things, their sound quality is sufficient.
I have to say that my ears totally hear the difference when I'm in the studio mixing live concerts where the source was split from something like a ART S8 verse something being sent out of the Direct Outs of a Midas Heritage.
Old 4th February 2009 | Show parent
  #9
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Why don't you take the direct out rather than the ISO out from the ART S8, especially since they don't have the best XFMRs in them?

Perhaps you would not hear such a difference when in the studio.

We opt for the direct out every time, but have taken the ISO out from our splitters (or the sound companies splitter) when it was our only option.

It's not bad at all when you're using high quality XFMRs.
Old 5th February 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Would it be terribly noticeable for FOH mix if they got the ISO lines ? The kind of rooms i would be recording in are mainly pubs/clubs.. Its not a big time situation, so id hope the FOH guy wouldnt be overly stressed by it.
Old 5th February 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
It really should not be a problem for the pub FOH person.

You just got to remember to phantom power the mics since FOH will not be able to.

I have found that it's more of an issue when you're doing a "one off' in the middle of a tour or string of dates.

Giving the FOH the split would change their levels since you're loosing about 3 dB going through the XFMR. They may also have an issue with the sound quality if the tranny is not up to their standards.
Old 5th February 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Nut
 
E-Murder's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness ➑️
Why don't you take the direct out rather than the ISO out from the ART S8, especially since they don't have the best XFMRs in them?

Perhaps you would not hear such a difference when in the studio.

We opt for the direct out every time, but have taken the ISO out from our splitters (or the sound companies splitter) when it was our only option.

It's not bad at all when you're using high quality XFMRs.

I wouldn't want to "change" anything happening with the venue, the idea is for me to be invisible. The FOH engineer would get pissed off if he/she can't supply their own phantom to their mic's, I wouldn't want to have that conversation with a bands crew or venue.
Probably a non-issue for a smaller pub or something along those lines. This depends on your situation on whom and where you are recording.

I don't have a problem with the db change from the iso outs, it isn't much and I have my own mic pres anyways. I was just mentioning that I can notice a difference when a really high end splitter is used during the recording process, like the Midas Heritage board or a Klark Teknik which are big bucks so they better sound their weight in gold.
Old 5th February 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Im just wondering..What is the real need for an ISO ? I noticed on audiopile the poormans spliiter, if thats just a straight split without any transformers what would be the outcome if you run one side to FOH and the other to recording ?

Is there interferance issues or something ? Sorry for the ignorance, nobody has ever really explained it to me..
Old 5th February 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Problems may occur when you're plugged into different power sources especially when there is a ground potential between the two systems.

There are some folks on this board that have used non-isolated splits with no problems because they are using the same power source as FOH or MON.

It really depends on your situation and what you may be up against each and every time you're out there recording.

For the most part, having a good quality splitter keeps you safe and sound. Pun intended.
Old 5th February 2009 | Show parent
  #15
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness ➑️
Problems may occur when you're plugged into different power sources especially when there is a ground potential between the two systems.

There are some folks on this board that have used non-isolated splits with no problems because they are using the same power source as FOH or MON.

It really depends on your situation and what you may be up against each and every time you're out there recording.

For the most part, having a good quality splitter keeps you safe and sound. Pun intended.

ok cool i figured as much, but nice to hear it from someone who really knows..
Old 5th February 2009 | Show parent
  #16
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Transformers basically separate the different systems attached to it.
Keeping the recording chassis off the sound system ground is (almost) always a good idea.
Old 5th February 2009 | Show parent
  #17
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
More info:
Whirlwind / Splitter Article
Old 11th October 2009 | Show parent
  #18
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
I have the EWI splitter and have used it many times with good results. I took the ISO out, and was very impressed with the sound quality--noticed no sonic degradation. I have not compared directly to splitters with more expensive transformers (or done an A/B vs, my direct transformerless splitter), but would not hesitate to use it in almost any situation. In fact, I just ordered another one for times when I don't need or want to drag out my heavy and bulky 24 channel direct splitter. The EWI splitter is quite a gear bargain, IMHO, and exceeded my expectations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrufino1 ➑️
I have not used the ART splitters and I don't have my ewi splitters anymore since I stopped recording, but I was very happy with the ewi splitters, no problems at all. One consideration may be that the EWI are four channels per rackspace (3 way splits), the ART are 8 (but 2 way splits). Sound quality wise, although no direct knowledge, I am going to bet the audio performance is just about the same. But as I said, I was happy with the EWI splitters. And audiopile is so fantastic to deal with, so that may also be a consideration.
Old 7th January 2012
  #19
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
i'm trying to decide between s8 and s8-3way for my recording rig. I would like to a third out, but my question is, will i need the ground lift with an isolated splitter? As for the pad, the problem will probably be with line signals, but i can pad them with a di box in the signal path. Any thoughts on these?
Old 8th January 2012
  #20
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
I'm in the same situation, I need a 3 way split and the art s8 3 is the only one in my budget but doesn't have ground lift. Would love some feedback on this. It would be permanently installed and would feed foh, monitors and recording to a separate room.
Old 8th January 2012 | Show parent
  #21
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Well, you have to figure out whether or not the feeds to REC, FOH and MON need to be grounded or lifted...

Clearly the direct is always grounded, especially if you need to phantom power some stuff.

That said, sometimes you may need to only lift some of the channels to some of the feeds; sometimes everything needs to be lifted and other times everything works great without having to do anything.

It all depends; you should consider renting or borrowing a splitter to do that important evaluation before you drop (any amount of) the bread on the box.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Anton65 ➑️
I'm in the same situation, I need a 3 way split and the art s8 3 is the only one in my budget but doesn't have ground lift. Would love some feedback on this. It would be permanently installed and would feed foh, monitors and recording to a separate room.
Old 9th January 2012
  #22
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audibell's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Well-built versus "economy"

I have a Medusa multi-splitter box and various other splitters with Jensen or Lundahl Txfmrs. The older WWind TRSP1 txfmrs were, I believe, designed/made by Jensen and eventually sourced elsewhere. Like the branded Jensen and Lundahl, they are 1:1 (no insertion loss) and to my ears, indistinguishable from the direct outs. There are people who will wince at the difference but they're not paying me. Older 2-way Imps have the same Txfmr but the 3-way has -6dB loss. I opened up an Art splitter a while ago and it didn't even have a txfmr to retrofit - so it went back.

I have two EWI 8ch xlr-xlr snakes for splits, 10 ft & 30ft, and they are both POS - they don't mate smoothly with other xlrs, notably the group outs on the back of a Verona and they require too much force to click home. They don't go near the output panel of a decent preamp. My trs snakes are mogami/neutrik and fit smoothly in new and older switchraft/neutrik sockets but not the EWI - same goes for WWind's "economy" EMC line of cables - be warned! If a splitter is for an installation, obviously inning & outting is a lesser issue but then you have to watch for oxidation at the point of pin contact with cheap metals.

While the hum/buzz is attenuated, the snap, crackle and pop is not defeated by ground lifting the iso and those fluorescent beer signs have got to go! Starquad and GAC are about the only cables with shields that can resist electronic noise - I know the EWI cannot and has not.

Save up & get the best you can afford, used-quality is usually better than new cheap-built, lasts way longer and is repairable.
rgds,
WalterT
Attached Thumbnails
ART S8 vs EWI MST412 - Mic Splitters-sb8t11-open.jpg   ART S8 vs EWI MST412 - Mic Splitters-art-splitter-combiner-2.jpg  
Old 9th January 2012
  #23
Gear Addict
 
🎧 15 years
I talked my bandmate into buying an ART S8 and two 8-channel XLR snakes (2m length) to split our PA vocal mics, take direct feeds from the guitar, mandolin & bass rigs and we place a mic strategically near the drumkit. He's recorded one gig with very pleasant results. He has one of those Zoom R16 units...the iso outs are fine.
Old 10th January 2012
  #24
Deleted 651cf92
Guest
Hi, I have been thinking if getting an ART S8 for a bit so i can start doing remote recording.
I know they are not the highest quality and was wanting to know about the modability? I guess the guts are all on a pcb can anybody conferm that? And also how easy it would be to swap out the xformers over time for Jensons as funds came available

Sorry for the thread hijack
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