Having worked with everything from Avid S1 and Dock to numerous DAW controllers, the journey to finding the proper mix setup was extensive. Lately, I’ve gravitated towards a combination that seems to work great—the Softube Console 1 MK3 paired with the SSL UF1. In this blog post, I’ll share an overview of why I consider this setup to be the ultimate solution for my mixing needs, detailing the integration, features, and benefits of using these controllers together.

Why Console 1 MK3 is Central to My Setup

The Softube Console 1 MK3 has been a cornerstone of my mixing workflow for several reasons. Here’s a detailed look at what makes this piece of gear indispensable:

Intuitive Control Over Mixing Elements

The Console 1 MK3 offers a hands-on approach to mixing that is rarely achieved with mouse clicks. It provides tactile control over essential elements such as EQ, compression, and volume, along with the ability to switch between different channel strips modeled after classic analog consoles. This immediate physical interaction speeds up my mixing process and enhances my connection with the mix.

Minimal CPU Impact

One of the standout features of the Console 1 MK3 is its efficiency. It hosts its own plugins, which means the DAW’s CPU isn’t heavily taxed. This is particularly beneficial in large sessions where CPU load can be a concern. For example, running multiple instances of high-quality plugins like the SSL 9000 Channel strip or the Softube modeled EQs and compressors has a negligible impact on system resources.

Versatility in Plugin Selection

While the Console 1 comes with an excellent SSL 4000 E series model, its ability to load other Softube-developed channel strips as well as third-party plugins like Universal Audio and Waves makes it highly versatile. This flexibility allows me to tailor the sound character and dynamic processing to match the specific needs of each track or project.

Waves Vocal Preset

Workflow Efficiency

The ability to save presets and quickly recall them across projects is a game-changer. Whether I’m starting a rough mix or fine-tuning a track, having my favorite settings a button-push away means I spend less time tweaking and more time creating. The visual feedback provided by the on-screen display also helps me make precise adjustments without second-guessing my moves.

While the Softube Console 1 MK3 provides a solid foundation for handling mixing tasks, integrating the SSL UF1 into my setup has elevated my control and efficiency to new heights. Here’s why the SSL UF1 is an indispensable part of my studio gear.


Where SSL UF1 Helps

Transport and Additional Controls

The SSL UF1 fills gaps left by the Console 1 MK3, particularly in transport control and additional fader operations. Having a dedicated transport section (play, stop, rewind, etc.) directly on the controller allows me to manage session playback without reverting to the computer keyboard or mouse. This integration keeps me focused on the mixing process, reducing distractions and increasing productivity.

Programmable Knobs and Faders

What truly sets the UF1 apart are its programmable knobs and faders. These features give me the flexibility to assign and adjust parameters on the fly, which is crucial during intensive mixing sessions. Whether I’m tweaking reverb sends or adjusting EQ settings, having these controls at my fingertips makes the process smoother and faster.

Integration with Studio Software

A notable advantage of the SSL UF1 is its compatibility with various DAWs, particularly Studio One, which I use. The UF1 can be configured to respond to track selections and control changes within the DAW, making it a seamless extension of the software. This deep integration means that when I select a track in Studio One, the UF1 automatically updates its controls to reflect the settings for that track, ensuring a synchronized workflow.

Final Thoughts

For any audio professional looking to elevate their mixing setup, the Softube Console 1 MK3 and SSL UF1 combination offers a compelling solution. This setup provides not just a series of tools, but a transformative approach to mixing that integrates technology with the tactile feel of traditional analog setups. The immediate and tangible improvements in workflow efficiency, sound quality, and overall job satisfaction justifies the investment in such a system.

I hope this helps you understand the benefits and capabilities of this dynamic duo. If you have any questions feel free to reach out or comment below. Happy mixing!