When purchasing an audio mixer, DJs are quite literally spoilt for choice. Visualists are a little constrained though, with only a handful of companies making a couple of vision mixer models each. This situation is improving rapidly though, with companies such as Vixid getting in on the act with their upcoming VJX16-4, and DJ company Numark with their AVM01 and recently updated AVM02.
While I’m very excited about my AVM02, there seems to be some definite resistance from the VJ community as it doesn’t include some features we’ve come to rely on (MIDI, easily accessible effects parameters). However, for DJs wanting to expand their performance to include visuals this may be just the right mix of audio and video.
Unfortunately the lack of MIDI will probably turn off live musicians who are too busy actually playing their instruments to mess with manually selecting video channels and crossfading. Let’s hope Numark release a MIDI capable AVM03 soon.
In the next couple of years I see this product lineup in the video market expanding similarly to DJ mixers, with different layouts, effects and options available for “turntablist” style highly-technical VJing, live looping with onboard sampling and effects, battle-style VJ mixers allowing you to mount your DVD player sideways and tag over your DVD labels like the hiphop kids do… In the meantime the AVM02 is really the only A/V mixer available at anywhere near this price point, and it does a superb job too. If you’re a visualist branching out into the frightening world of audio, a DJ looking to add video to your set, or just someone looking for a solid, competitively priced vision mixer, you should definitely give the AVM02 a try.