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Soundcraft UI12 vs Behringer XR12: Case File

Soundcraft UI12 vs. Behringer XR12

The difference between wireless mixers can come down to the smallest of features. It’s like finding a needle in a haystack.

This saying could not be more true for the Soundcraft Ui12 and the Behringer XR12 mixers. 

Both mixers are digital, wireless, ultra-light, all in one, and have built-in wi-fi.

Both have a similar number of inputs and outputs, but their differences reveal themselves in the finer details. 

Don’t worry about the tiring research, because I’ve done it for you.

This comparison guide for Soundcraft Ui12 vs Behringer XR12 includes: 

  • Features and Specs of both mixers
  • Pros and Cons of the Soundcraft Ui12
  • Pros and Cons of the Behringer XR12
  • Important Differences
  • Choosing the right digital mixer that is in line with your needs
  • An alternative gear option

Grab your magnifying glasses and LET THE INSPECTION BEGIN!

Table of Contents

Soundcraft UI12 Overview:

1_Soundcraft UI12 Overview-

The Soundcraft Ui12 is a user-friendly product released in a series of remote-controlled, completely digital, and wireless mixers.

It has 12 input channels, each with a 4-band equalizer, high-pass filter, compressor, de-esser, and a noise-canceling feature.

What Makes the Soundcraft Ui12 Unique?

1_What Makes the Soundcraft Ui12 Unique-

Say goodbye to your heavy guitar & bass amps.

Simply connect your instrument’s cable to the first two Hi-Z inputs powered by DigiTech’s amp modeling software, which is capable of high-end simulations.

I like the Soundcraft Ui12 because it can suppress external sources of potential noise with its advanced feedback suppression algorithm, for a smoother and less distracting mixing experience.

It’s a superb digital mixer that takes convenience to another level with its integrated wi-fi and compatibility with any HTML-5 web browser (Safari, Firefox, Chrome, etc.).

It also comes with an ethernet port that lets you connect and operate it on any monitor, giving you the freedom to mix anytime and anywhere with ANY DEVICE.

List of Features:

  • Compatible with iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, and Linux devices.
  • Can connect up to 10 screens simultaneously, so each band member can control their monitor mix and effects.
  • Feedback suppressors for 2 channels.
  • Real-time frequency analyzer (RTA) for its inputs and outputs.
  • Amp simulation is perfect for guitar and bass. 
  • HDMI output for monitors and a USB port for mouses, recording, and playback.

What Are the Benefits?

Beginners don’t need any previous experience to operate its user interface.

It’s very intuitive, I promise.

It’s compatible with your phone, iPad, and various computers. It’s conveniently PORTABLE and HANDY, so you can slip it all in a single backpack.

It’s great for acoustic gigs and other small-scale performances.

Strong built-in recording capabilities filter out the noise and feedback frequencies while retaining its audio quality.

You can also connect a USB stick for audio-file playbacks.

The 8 XLR inputs provide enough preamps for singers and drummers, plus it’s excellent at simulating amps.

Are There Any Drawbacks?

The Ui 12 is highly dependent on your internet connection, so an unstable connection can cause you to lose control of your mixing.

Another possible issue is the user interface glitching.

I’d say the connection is your biggest issue with this music gear.

List of Tech Specs:

  • Channels: 12
  • Inputs – Mic Preamps: 4 x XLR/TRS, 4 x XLR
  • Phantom Power: Yes
  • Inputs – Other: 1 x Stereo (RCA)
  • Outputs – Main: 2 x XLR, 2 x TRS
  • Outputs – Other: 2 x XLR
  • Data I/O: Ethernet
  • Effects: Yes
  • Multi-Track Recording: No
  • Feedback Control: Yes

Let’s move on to the Behringer XR12…

Behringer XR12 Overview

1_Behringer XR12 Overview

The Behringer XR12 is a digital mixer that prides itself on its mobility. It’s compatible with your iPad and Android tablet through its free mobile app software (X AIR).

It sports 12 channels with 4 MIDAS-programmed mic preamps, a 100-band RTA on each channel, and, like other Behringer mixers, the X32 effects rack.

What Makes the Behringer XR12 Unique?

The Behringer XR12 has 4 true stereo multi-effect processors, which allow you to select from different high-end simulations of classic studio reverbs (PCM70, EMT250, Quantec URS, or Lexicon 480L).

This is paired with MIDAS mic preamplifiers that make for high-quality audio reproduction.

It has 6 line-level inputs that I’ve found are great for keyboards, microphones, etc. It also has MIDI In/Out plugs that let you connect electric instruments to your computer.

When it comes to EQ, this Behringer mixer is the Robin to your Batman.

The RTA helps you surgically manage your frequency content using bus equalizers and visual feedback on the app.

This mixer lets your band control their monitor mix and effects in real-time and anywhere in the venue because it features an integrated router that can be operated from 4 separate devices.

Here’s how the app looks like:
1_What Makes the Behringer XR12 Unique-

List of Features:

  • Hands-on remote control over mixing functions
  • No need to set up and configure an external router
  • Ethernet port for network options
  • Fully gain-programmable, remote-controllable preamplifiers
  • Facilitates offline pre-production
  • Robust FX engine

What Are the Benefits?

Like other wireless mixers, the XR12 is more durable, and it’s also rack-mountable, SAVING you lots of time when setting up on stage.

Its USB port guarantees zero latency when recording your mixes, perfect for gigs and studio sessions.

The XR12 is like a cheat code that gives you access to 4 MIDAS XLR inputs, which are known for their legendary audio quality and zero feedback.

Another cool feature the X AIR app offers is channel presets for vocals, bass, kicks, and snares.

Are There Any Drawbacks?

Like I mentioned earlier, there are only 4 preamps which limit the number of band members you can bring on stage.

It also only has ONE physical knob for the monitor channel.

Lastly, some reviews mentioned that the audio effects quality falls flat.

List of Tech Specs:

  • Channels: 12
  • Inputs – Mic Preamps: 4 x XLR-1/4″ combo
  • Phantom Power: Yes (activated via remote app)
  • Inputs – Line: 6 x 1/4″, 2 x 1/4″ (Hi-Z inputs)
  • Outputs – Main: 2 x XLR
  • Channel Inserts: Internal effects/processing inserts
  • Busses/Groups: 2 x 1/4″ TRS (aux bus out)
  • Data I/O: Ethernet, Built-in wi-fi Module, 2-ch USB-to-device
  • MIDI I/O: In/Out
  • Multi-Track Recording: No
  • Feedback Control: No
  • Rackmountable: Yes

Now that we know what each mixer does, let’s compare them.

The Comparison Guide: Soundcraft UI12 vs Behringer XR12

The section below is dedicated to the key differences between the two mixers.

Headphone Outputs:

  • Ui12: Has 2 X 1/4″ master headphone outputs
  • XR12: Has 1 X 1/4″ master output

Though this difference may seem minuscule, having an extra set of ears goes a long way.

Ever heard of the saying “4 ears are better than 2”?? Just kidding.

Performance

These two wireless mixers are capable of upgrading your live performances to professional quality.

Both brands have high-quality processors that ensure convenient mixing.

The Behringer XR12 is fused with a 40-bit floating-point signal processing that gives you unlimited dynamic range in manipulating your EQs.

On the other hand, the Soundcraft Ui12 incorporates the dbx HARMAN signal processing software, which grants you absolute control of your EQs and loudspeakers.

Choosing between the performance of both these mixers is pretty difficult, so I’m calling it a TIE.

Sound Quality

Both of these mixers guarantee impeccable sound quality for their outputs, but what about their inputs?

The XR12 uses the award-winning MIDAS mic preamplifiers that reproduce legendary sound quality. Four inputs rock this preamp, and it even has an auto-mixing feature.

On the other hand, the Ui12 takes pride in its advanced feedback suppression algorithm (AFS2) for its inputs.

Wouldn’t it be amazing to have sonic insurance while playing live?

However great that may be, it can’t compare to the quality of MIDAS programmed inputs.

So, the XR12 is your best option for audio quality.

Onboard Effects

“Effects maketh mixers.” – Kingsman’s music engineer.

The Ui12 gives you access to 3 Lexicon FXs: delay, reverb, and chorus, creating authentic effect simulation.

Plus the presence of the amp modeling software provides extra amp and pedal effects.

Conversely, the Behringer XR12 provides a greater variety of effects incorporating the X32 effects rack.

As I mentioned earlier, the classic studio reverbs offered by the Behringer XR 12 lack depth and richness.

With this in mind, quality over quantity stands, making the Ui12 the one for you.

NOTE: The Behringer XR 12 doesn’t have any feedback fighting features.

Connection

I believe that all mixers should have a steady connection. These wireless mixers have integrated wi-fi, with the XR12 having an edge due to its tri-mode feature.

  • Ui12 can connect to 10 users SIMULTANEOUSLY without the need for an app
  • XR12 can connect to 4 users with the help of X AIR

The Ui12 removes OS restrictions by making its platform compatible with any browser. I can’t say the same for the XR12 because it still needs an app like many mixers.

However convenient the Ui12 interface is, online reviews mention that the connection of the Soundcraft Ui12 is quite unstable, which has led to HORRIFYING live-band performances.

A solution for this is to connect an ethernet router, but not everyone has this option.

For these reasons, I’d recommend the XR12 if you want to stay in control and connected to your mix.

Pricing

The price difference between both mixers is $44, with the XR12 being the more expensive product.

Its affordable price definitely makes the Soundcraft Ui12 worth it. It’s a great intro to digital mixing and one of the most adaptable wireless mixers on the market.

It’s a handy BUDGET OPTION for digital mixers.

If you want to look for cheaper options, you may want to check out analog mixers.

Alternatives Worth Considering: Soundcraft Ui16

1_Soundcraft Ui16

If you aren’t satisfied with the mixers above, this might be an option for you and your band.

Soundcraft Ui16 is the second product in Soundcraft’s Ui series of wireless mixers. It has all the features present in the Ui12.

YES, Soundcraft Ui16 also has feedback suppression, amp modeling, access to Lexicon effects, dbx signal processing, and even the same number of operable devices

The difference between these mixers is the number of XLR inputs.

The Soundcraft Ui16 has 12 XLR inputs, suitable for bigger band setups. The recording feature is also amazing to have in the studio.

Like the other mixers on this list, just connect it to wi-fi, and you’re ready to rock. I should mention that it’s more expensive than the previous mixers.

NOTE: Both the Ui12 and the Ui16 DO NOT need an app.

Final Verdict: Which Is Better for You?

1_Final Verdict- Which Is Better for You-

Both mixers have their respective qualities.

By now, you’d have a multitude of information in helping you choose which of these mixers suits your needs the most.

To sum it up:

Choose the Soundcraft Ui12 if:

  • You want access to first-class effects that will WOW live audiences.
  • You need a feedback fighting algorithm that enhances the quality of your mic inputs.
  • You fancy having amp emulation capabilities in your mixers.
  • You are on a budget.

Choose the Behringer XR12 if:

  • You want more effects in your mixers.
  • You want to have a rack-mountable mixer.
  • You require MIDI in/outs.

Other Mixers you might want to check out:

Or maybe, you’re looking for an audio interface instead? Check out my comparison guide on the differences between Audio Interfaces vs. Mixers!

I hope to have aided you, and we wish your band the best in those concerts!

Changelog:

December 15, 2022 – minor formatting updates

April 12, 2022 – minor content edits

About the author

cd38730de4e65cc7ce515086e48ba144

After becoming obsessed with the beats that were the soundtrack to his youth, Nick became a student of hip hop, digging for vinyl records, looking for the perfect break. Before he got his hands on an MPC sampler, he would mash these records, beats, and breaks into mixtapes and live DJ sets.