Soundtracs PC MIDI 24 Channel Console Restoration

This lovely Soundtracs PC-MIDI 24 track Inline Mixing Console was fully restored, and purchased by a well known Electronic Dance Music producer based in Amsterdam.

Soundtracs PC-MIDI console

At 120 x 90 x 25cm, the Soundtracs PC-MIDI 24 track is a nice size for one person to operate. Inline means that both mic/line input, tape output and tape return are all in each channel strip. There is also MIDI mute automation of mutes, which makes it an excellent partner for recording and mixing from a DAW. Mutes can be recorded in real time or recalled by using patches. The onboard computer can also send commands to control other MIDI devices. There are 24 channel modules, one master and two FX return modules with four channels each, as well as a separate power supply. The console also has 18 channels of LED metering on the overbridge.

Soundtracs PC-MIDI console

Features:

  • 24 Mic inputs with up to 60dB of gain, 20dB pad and +48V phantom power. Line inputs with up to 30dB gain.
  • 24 Four Band Equalisers, with two swept mids, high and low shelving. Equaliser can be split between Channel and Monitor sections.
  • 4 auxillary sends. Aux 1 and 2 can be switched pre/Post fader. 3 and 4 are Post (but can be altered by setting links on the board).
  • 16 subgroups (on the first 16 modules).
  • Direct outputs from last 8 modules.
  • MIDI mute automation on both channel and monitor sections of each module, as well as the 4 aux masters.
  • 8 FX returns (two separate modules) with MIDI muting.
  • LED metering on overbridge for groups, Mix bus and SOLO.
  • External low noise linear PSU.
  • Comprehensive (and very useful) User Manual in PDF form (54 pages).
Testing the console

The PC-MIDI console was fully overhauled. A number of repairs were carried out, and of course it was fully tested. This is what was done:

  • Full rebuild of PSU : new mains transformers (it looked like the original had failed and a horrible attempt at repair carried out), upgraded rectifiers for audio rails (mounted on chassis for better heat dissipation), replaced and upgraded smoothing capacitors, rewired (adding an earth busbar internally and replacing possibly unreliable crimp connections with solder).
  • Inline fuses added in PSU to protect desk wiring in case of a short.
  • PSU load tested at 2 amps (desk requires a little over 1.5A), and checked for stability. Power lead checked and resoldered.
  • Cleaning : buttons and knobs removed and washed, faceplates cleaned.
  • Broken earth terminal on rear of desk replaced.
  • Mechanical damage to overbridge faceplate repaired.
  • Battery on computer board replaced.
  • Pots cleaned with Caig Deoxit. Faders opened, cleaned and lubricated with Caig Fader Lube where necessary. 1/4″ jacks cleaned with Deoxit.
  • Broken potentiometers and missing control knobs replaced.
  • Main audio paths (mic/line in to tape out, tape in, routing to mix, auxs) checked with oscillator, also tests of frequency response and noise carried out.
  • Operation of peak LEDs and test of Maximum Output Level (headroom) carried out from Line In to Insert Out for each channel.
  • Burnt out lamps in overbridge behind logo replaced with white LEDs, which last for decades. (Cosmetic, but that matters too.)
  • Various missing screws in frame replaced.
The Soundtracs PC-MIDI power supply (fully rebuilt)

This is a very capable and well featured piece of vintage pro-audio gear, perfect for a growing project studio or compabt commercial studio that appreciates the benefits of analogue mixdown with mute automation and the classic “British” sound. that proved to be the case, as the desk sold very quickly after restoration.

More pics:

Soundtracs PC-MIDI console – audio connections
Soundtracs PC-MIDI console – EQ section
Soundtracs PC-MIDI console – Routing section
Soundtracs PC-MIDI console – Master section
Soundtracs PC-MIDI console – MIDI and power connections
Soundtracs PC-MIDI console – audio connections
Soundtracs PC-MIDI console – onboard computer

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