As musicians and fellow bassists, many of us have home studios working on our own projects and collaborating with others.
The PreSonus FaderPort 8 Production Controller is a welcome addition for the home studio in making the process of recording actually easier, more precise, more productive, not to mention FUN! The FaderPort 8 is best when used with Studio One, however, it does work great with other DAWs as well. I ran the unit though it’s paces in Studio One Professional and Logic Pro X over the past few days. To be quite honest, it worked just as well for me in Logic Pro X as it did in Studio One Professional.
The FaderPort 8 has eight motorized fader controls, solo and mute buttons for each channel and separate solo clear and mute clear buttons, which helps if you have multiple channels on solo or mute. These two buttons clear all those parameters. The Select button will highlight the channel in your DAWs mixer, giving a guide of where you are, or the ability to arm just that track, edit other parameters on that track and so on. Not only can you edit tracks, you can edit plugins, sends, and pan. There is one pan control knob for all channels, or I was able to get the faders to also control pan as well. Editing plugins is easy, for example, I was able to edit EQ parameters in Logic Pro X. It doesn’t stop there; you can choose to set parameters on just Audio tracks, MIDI tracks, Bus output, and effects. Other fader controls that are native in every DAW are the volume control. The FaderPort 8 again gives you everything you need for all the parameters including Latch, Trim, Touch, Write, and Read, and what’s really cool is when you are setting up the faders, for example volume control of each separate track, the motorized faders move along with the adjustments that you set once the are written and set to read.
Other parameters you can change are Zoom, Scroll, Marker, Click track, Section, Marker, and Bank. The last one mentioned, Bank, allows you to scroll through the tracks on your DAWs mixer allowing you to choose which tracks to work on with the FaderPort 8. There are three depending on your DAW. Studio One uses the Native setup, Pro Tools uses the HUI setup, and all other DAWs use the Mackie Control setup. The setup is easy to change. Hold down the first two select buttons while powering the unit on it will boot into a setup screen.
Speaking of set screen, this screen, which appears for each channel, also shows you parameters for pan, effects, and plugins. PreSonus has also added some custom controls for Studio One. For example, you can bypass plugins on a selected channel with the Bypass button, create Macros, and use the Link button to change parameters in Studio One for a control that your mouse is highlighting.
I did try it with Record/Reason too. On this DAW, it did seem a little limited but that may be because I haven’t updated to the latest version of Record/Reason yet and I’m still running version 8. I was able to control a lot of parameters; even in the instruments it gave me more precise control over things. The FaderPort 8 also gives you full control over playback and pause, enabling recording, stop, loop and fast forward and reverse control.
The FaderPort 8 uses the PreSonus Universal Control for keeping the unit up-to-date with the latest firmware.
In closing, The PreSonus FaderPort 8 Production Controller is nothing less than very exceptional and of the highest quality. If you are looking for ease of use with your DAW and wanting to get away with using the mouse and keyboard to control what a production controller should do, then you owe it to yourself to check it out. I have to say, this will give your home studio more of a hands on feel, especially in the traditional sense when most of us are accustomed to having the feel of a studio mixer when working on projects.
Check out the PreSonus FaderPort 8 Production Controller online at MusiciansFriend.com or a music retailer near you!