How To Use Solo on DL32R Mixer

We’ve had our Mackie DL32R Mixer for how long now?  (nearly 2 years!) And I’ve never bothered to figure out why the Solo channel controls weren’t working as I expected. When I solo a channel, its Solo button turns yellow, and the yellow all-caps SOLO indicator shows up in the top right quick access panel button. But, I don’t hear the channel solo in the audio outputs. Why not?

We don’t really need to use Solo during a gig. But at soundcheck, it sure would be nice! We like to record our soundcheck and then stand out front while playing it back to adjust the mix. Being able to solo a channel would be helpful when dialing in EQ setings, etc.

So, this weekend I finally read the relevant parts of the Mackie Master Fader reference guide, and figured out how to make this work! Just in time for our St Patrick’s Day gig on Friday.

DL32R OutputsTurns out, the Solo buttons only affect the Monitor L/R output.  See those 1/4” outputs at the top of the mixer there?

The idea is that the sound guy in the back can use these solo buttons during a performance to check on a particular channel, without affecting the main front of house mix.  Makes sense.  Except my band has no sound guy! 🙂 And we don’t use the Monitor L/R outputs- we just use the Main L/R mix connected to XLR outputs 13 and 14.

DL32R Output Routing For Main LRWell, as with most things on the super-flexible DL32R, there is a way! The answer is in the I/O Patch window on the Output tab.

We just need to disconnect the Main L/R outputs from the XLR 13/14.

They’re still connected to AES 1/2, which is fine.

DL32R Output Routing For MonitorAnd then, connect the Monitor L/R signals to the XLR 13/14 output jacks as shown here.

Now, our front of house is actually listening to the Monitor L/R signal from XLR 13/14.

Just gotta be careful not to bump a Solo button mid-set 🙂

DL32R Solo Location SettingsThe only other thing to do is to configure the Solo Location setting in the Master Fader settings page (under the gear icon).

I set it to AFL (after-fader-listen) so that the fader still works when solo’d.  If you set it to PFL (pre-fader-listen), then when you solo a channel, the audio will be full-volume and probably tear your freakin head off.

Moral of the story:  RTFM!