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Connecting an effects unit to a Rane MP/XP2016a rotary mixer? Help?

Mankey Mickey 8:22 PM - 20 June, 2006
Hi everyone,

I’m new to your board (this is my first post) so I haven’t had an opportunity to contribute – which makes this request for help a very big request for a favour. I hope that some of you might have the time to assist me

My name’s Mike and I come from Adelaide in South Australia. I’m in a bit of an interesting situation with my dj mixer. I own a Rane MP/XP2016a rotary mixer, which, from what I can tell, is a fairly common club mixer in The US (particularly in New York). I have a technical query and the reason that I’m posting it on your board is that there isn’t really anyone in Australia that I can ask “tricky” questions of- it’s very, very rare mixer here. Apparently I’m the only person in Adelaide with one. The only other ones that I know of are owned by a few companies in Sydney and Melbourne that hire them out to clubs as required. There are probably less than 10 in this country. Not a great situation to be in when you need some assistance!


(please excuse me if any of the terminology I use is a bit “basic” – I’m actually a civil engineer, not a sound engineer!)

I wonder whether any of you know how to effectively configure an external effects unit with this mixer?

The effect loop only sends a “master” signal – I can’t assign all, or part of individual channels to the effect send (which you can do with Pioneer DJM, Ecler NU05 etc.) so the usefulness of that effect loop for “DJ” style effects is limited. Brilliant for attaching a dynamic processor (like a compressor) but, like I said, not so brilliant for DJ use.

I would really like to incorporate an effect unit (i.e. EFX-500/1000 etc… or any other that you may be able to recommend), mainly for incorporation of a delay/echo effect, which will allow me to more flexibility when mixing poorly/non-quantised styles, such as rare groove, jazz and disco/garage… BUT I really need to be able to assign only one channel at a time to be effected.

Rather than sit back and be lazy waiting for anyone to fix this for me, I have actually done some thinking and research and have come up with the following set of possible solutions (again, I’m a civil engineer, so please excuse me any errors):

(1) Locate one effect unit between each source and it’s corresponding phono/line input on the mixer (an inelegant and prohibitively expensive solution).
(2) Incorporate a switchable system of ‘send/receive’ hardware BETWEEN the sources (turntables/laptop) and the phono/line inputs that will allow me to send the signal from one source at a time to an effect unit and return it to the corresponding phono/line input on the mixer. This would require preamps to boost any phono signals to the line signal required by an effects unit.
(3) Somehow utilise a mixer with send/effects bus to send to effects unit and then return to dj mixer effect loop return
(4) Split the cable that runs between the MP2016a mixer and XP2016a eq expander and Somehow utilise a mixer with send/effects bus to send to effects unit and then return to dj mixer effect loop return

I’m interested to know if any of you might know of how to do this, or know of a club that’s achieved it. I’m sure that I’m not trying to reinvent the wheel – I’m sure that at person has had the desire to do this, and achieved it.

Here are a few sketches to illustrate where I am, and what some possible solutions might be (It’s the bits marked with “?” that I don’t know of – maybe there’s an “off the shelf” solution somewhere?). Out of interest – I’ve asked Rane, and they weren’t able to help.

This is the situation that I’m in:


This is a possible solution involving multiple (unknown) hardware units:


This is a possible solution involving one (unknown) hardware unit:


Thankyou very much for reading this far! I hope that you might be able to help.

I really think that I’ve pushed this as far as I can go myself – and my time to go any further is very limited because my son has Cystic Fibrosis and requires daily care. Any help would be great!
deejayfatcat 8:58 PM - 20 June, 2006
I use a Bozak knob (thats what us nyc dj's call them) mixer that is very simiar to yours. There is no easy answer since there are no effect inserts on the individual channels. I have used many different effects processors with my set up. They include Lexicon Jamman, Boss Sp202, Electrix MoFX. I use the send portion of the loop but go back into one of the aux channels so that I can cue my effect. It is really helpful with the sp202 since it is a sampler as well. I know I wasnt of that much help but that is the physical limitation of the unit. Get your soldering iron out and let me know how it goes.
DJ_Mike_Coquilla 1:20 PM - 21 June, 2006
yo Mankey Mickey, Welcome to tha board :)

- dj Mike Coquilla
djtonypsalms 7:13 PM - 21 June, 2006
Greetings and welcome...

I've got a great mixer that was marketed to audiophiles. All you get is a stripped down mixer with KILLER sound quality!

However, it does have it's limitations --- the one you just mentioned.

If the mixer is brand new, return it, and get a Rotary Empath, then you'll have total flexibility, but will lose 1 input channel.

Good luck!
djtonypsalms 7:46 PM - 21 June, 2006
EDIT: You've got a great mixer...
nobspangle 8:08 PM - 21 June, 2006
I think anything you do is going to be comprimising the sound quality of the mixer which is the main reason for owning it.
However using the mixer with a Pioneer effects unit will also comprimise the sound quality.
Mankey Mickey 2:56 PM - 26 April, 2014
Eight years later and I stumbled back onto this one. Thanks for your input guys - I did read it, and apologies for not responding and thanking you back then.

The situation is that I've matured a heap as a dj, and I don't see the need to 'effect' things now - I just look for great quality music these days and let the mixer breathe and do it's thing... play that great music as it was laid down. I was just trying to get too fancy back then. Best to keep it simple and not over-do it.

Thanks for your input!
DJ_X_Trodinaire 6:24 PM - 26 April, 2014
Wow! digging crates here! ;)
Mankey Mickey 11:21 PM - 26 April, 2014
Haha! Yeah, it showed up on my list of discussions.

I'm actually thinking of buying one of these mixers that are made by a mate, so not only no effects, but doing away with 'per channel eq' as well.

No need to sell the Rane knob, just have one of these for the living room (when we extend the house) - or maybe for when it's a nice day outside ;) Time to start saving.
djjohnr 4:10 PM - 2 May, 2014
If anyone else out there has a 2016 and would rather have a rotary empath, I'll trade ;)
Detroitbootybass 4:40 PM - 3 May, 2014
If anyone else out there has a 2016 and would rather have a rotary empath, I'll trade ;)

I can't help you with the trade, but I'd love to see a picture of your rotary Empath!
djjohnr 12:31 AM - 5 May, 2014
djbanno 1:43 AM - 5 May, 2014
^^Dead sexy...nice kit.
Detroitbootybass 8:31 PM - 5 May, 2014

Ahhhhh... that's the money shot.

[drooling like Homer Simpson]