When we covered the release of the Qcon Pro X DAW controller earlier this year, it turned out to be a very popular article. Small DAW controllers are becoming more attractive as we all downsize our project studios. There’s nothing quite like having some real faders and controls in front of you when recording or mixing. But there are several cheaper solutions already out there. How does the Qcon Pro X stack up against this formidable opposition?
Icon Qcon Pro X DAW Controller
Hardly a day goes by when I am not asked about the merits of real hardware faders in a software-based studio. Hardware controls such as faders are becoming replaced by the keyboard and mouse, or a touchscreen, both in studios and live sound environments. Whilst there are benefits to these technologies, there’s nothing like having using real facers. They offer better workflow for tracking sessions and a faster, more musical mixing experience.
The Qcon Pro X received a lot of interest at NAMM 2016. I still haven’t seen one, or know anyone that’s actually got one. There seems to have been production delays, which unfortunately isn’t a surprise considering Icon’s past. But some limited stocks are about to become available; most distributors are taking pre-orders now. If this is what you’ve been waiting for, get in quick before they’re out of stock again.
Being late onto the market, the Qcon Pro X must hold its own against other existing solutions. Like the new PreSonus Faderport 8, for example, which doesn’t have as many controls or look quite as professional, but is cheaper, more compact and from a well-known brand. There’s also the Behringer X-Touch, another 8-fader DAW controller. It might be Behringer and look a bit tacky, but it’s not likely to get too much excessive wear in your average project studio environment.
The Qcon Pro X is the most expensive choice out of the options I’ve just mentioned, but it certainly looks the most professional and has a total of 9 faders. I love the way this thing looks. It offers a good number of programmable controls, a meter bridge and plug-in control. It also has switchable faceplates specific to different DAWs, making it a more tailored solution than other products trying to work in the same way for all the systems out there. Being an Icon product, we can also expect expander units to follow soon. The question here is: how soon?
Pre-orders can be placed at a price of around 703 GBP, with delivery hopefully towards the end of the month. For more information check out the Icon webpage for the Qcon Pro X.
Here’s a video review of the Qcon Pro X by Ask.Audio on their YouTube channel. Slightly sales-like in style, it still provides a nice insight to the mixer which we haven’t really seen yet.