Rodec Scratchbox Review
Overview: The Rodec Scratchbox is a BRAND NEW Professional Grade ULTIMATE Scratch Mixer which many expect to be the greatest scratch tool in the world.
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Since 1954 RODEC is known for it's high quality professional mixers & amplifiers.
Having the reputation of producing the sturdiest mixers in the world, RODEC became the standard in many fixed and mobile music systems in the entertainment industry.
Although RODEC is often considered as the reference club mixer on the market, RODEC never made a specific mixer for the scratch DJ.
In 2003 Rodec got the idea to create the ultimate scratch mixer...
A team of professional Scratch Deejays and our R&D department tested every available scratch mixer on the market. Rodec's goal was to improve every available feature and used component. To live up to the RODEC reputation this mixer needed the RODEC Quality, Sound, Headroom and Equalizer. Rodec's Dj team provided the necessary refreshing new features.
After more than 2 years of development the result is "the RODEC Scratchbox" in our opinion the ultimate scratch mixer without unnecessary bells & whistles. Check it out...
10 inch width - 9 units - mixing panel.
Front- and top-panel in elegant matt silver paint.
Aluminium anodised smooth scratchplate, no obstructions by any paint of text print on the panel.
Front-handles to carry the mixer and to avoid unwanted moving of the buttons during use and during connection of the mixing panel.
Same height as the Technics famous SL-1200/1210 turntables.
4 Input channels
- 2 Phono inputs on gold plated RCA connectors.
- 4 Line inputs CH1 + CH2 + CH3/FX-return + CH4/Session/Backtape-in.
- 1 Microphone input on COMBO (XLR-JACK) connector.
- 2 Master outputs on RCA connectors.
- Symmetrical output with XLR connectors on master 1.
- 1 Aux/FX-send output on RCA connectors.
- 1 Record/aus/session output on RCA connectors.
- 1 Strong head-phones output on JACK (6,35mm - 1/4 inch) and mini-JACK (3,2mm - 1/8 inch).
Control functions channels 1 and 2:
- Phono/line input select switch.
- Channel 1-2 reverse switch.
- Rotative level control per channel.
- Triple tone control with short faders, for very fast manipulation of the audio spectrum (+10dB/-21dB).
- Aux/FX-send push button for routing the signal via external effects-units.
- Wet/dry fader to mix between signal without effect and signal with effect.
- Short balance fader.
- CUT-switches with very low operating force, placeable in 8 directions. Can be used in 3 modes:
Double speed cut
- Easy slide 45mm fader specially designed for high speed operating.
- Channel fader reverse switch with LED indication at the front.
- Channel fader curve control with potentiometer at front.
- Easy slide digital optical long life time crossfader, with friction control screw and cut-in distance control screws, to fade between channel 1 and 2.
- Crossfader reverse switch with LED indication at the front.
- Crossfader curve control with potentiometer at front.
- PFL channel 1 and 2 ON/OFF button
- PFL select fader, to create a mixed signal of channel 1 and 2 in the headphones.
All volume- and curve-controls on channel 1 and 2 are done by a microcontroller controlled VCA.
The channel-faders, cross-fader and cut-switches can easily be replaced via the top-panel after lifting of the scratchplate.
Control functions channel 3:
- Mic/line input select switch.
- Rotative level control.
- 0dB LED to adjust the level.
- Dual band equalizer with rotative potmeters.
- PFL ON/OFF button.
- Routing switch to route the signal to channel 1 or 2 or directly to the mix.
- Short channel fader for fast operation.
- Rotative level control
Soft touch rotative knobs for better grip on all rotative potmeters.
Very smooth, extremely strong, metal plated matt chrome coloured knobs on all channel faders, cross fader and PFL-select fader.
Mode switch to select mono or stereo operation of the mixing panel, ideal for working with records with different left and right tracks.
Two master outputs with rotative volume control (also useable as monitor or booth output)
Two bright VU-meters to show the levels of the inputs or mixed signal.
Normal and upside down text print at the back panel to facilitate connection.
Soft rubber anti-slide buttons at the bottom of the mixer.
Power switch on the back of the panel, to avoid accidentally switching off the panel.
External power supply, to reduce disturbances.
Optical high quality channel- or crossfader
Digital session/aux/backtape input via RCA connector with level control at the back panel
Digital record/aux/session output via RCA connector at the back panel
Input channels 1 and 2
When using input channels 1&2 yo have the choice between phono inputs with a sensitivity of 5.2mV and built-in RIAA correction or line inputs with a sensitivity of 500mV (to connect different equipment such as a CD-player, MP3 player, tuner, tape player, mini disc, video player, etc...)
If you are using the phono inputs and the record player has a ground wire, it can be connected to the ground.
After connecting the music-sources you can select the phono or line input for each channel using the select-switch.
By switching the VU select switch to input (the led will light up), the input signal of channel 1 will appear on the left VU-meter and the signal of channel 2 on the right VU-meter. This is very useful to compare the level of both signals.
Adjust with the level control the input signal so that the yellow indicators of the level meters light up occasionally.
By switching the channel routing switch from the upper position (STRAIGHT) to the lower position (REVERSE) you can direct the signal from channel 1 to channel 2 and vice versa.
3rd input channel
You can connect sound sources to channel 3 through the microphone input with a 8.0mV sensitivity or through the line input which has a sensitivity of 500mV.
After connecting the sound source you must set the input selector to the type of input you're using (MIC or LINE).
You can now set the pre-fade level of the channel using the input level potentiometer. The level should be set so that the 0dB-led only lights up at the peaks in the music.
Use the EQ-knobs to control the treble and bass of the sound.
Using the routing selector you can direct the sound either to the mix and control it with the channel 3 fader or route it to channel 1 or 2 and control it with the respective faders.
The 4th channel on the scratchbox is the Aux/Session input.
This is a line input (with a 500mV sensitivity) of which the level can be controlled with the Aux/Session level potentiometer.
Optional S/P DIF input
To connect a digital input S/P DIF (Sony/Philips digital interface format) coaxial signal, there is an optional digital session/aux/back-tape input unit available. This unit can easily be mounted inside the mixing panel.
With this option a digital signal can be connected to the digital input. The level must be adjusted with the digital input level potentiometer.
This optional digital input unit can be ordered at every authorized RODEC-dealer.
Order code= 94 001 0042
Master outputs 1 and 2
Assymetrical outputs to connect power-amplifiers. The output level can be respectively manipulated with the master potentiometers 1 and 2 from 0 to maximum (775mV).
Symmetrical master output 1
Symmetrical output to connect a power-amplifier. The output level can be manipulated with the master 1 potentiometer from 0 to maximum (1.55V).
Output to connect a recorder to make recordings or to connect the Scratchbox to an input of another mixer or pre-amplifier.
Optional S/P DIF output.
To connect a digital output S/P DIF (Sony/Philips digital interface format) coaxial signal, there is an optional digital session/aux/back-tape output unit available. This unit can easily (with only one screwdriver) be mounted inside the mixing panel
This optional digital output unit can be ordered at every authorized RODEC-dealer.
Order code= 94 001 0043
Fader curve adjustment
The curves for the channel faders and crossfader can be adjusted using the knobs on the frontpanel.
When the channel fader curve adjustment knob is in the leftmost position the fader will fade the signal from maximum to zero in the first fraction of the fader sliding from top to bottom.
When the adjustment knob is in the rightmost position the signal will go from zero to maximum in the first fraction of the fader sliding from bottom to top.
With the knob in the middle position the signal level will slowly rise from zero to maximum when sliding fader knob from bottom to top.
When the cross fader curve potentiometer is turned to the left, the cross fader will work as a normal cross fader. The volume of channel 2 will go from 0 as the shaft of the cross fader is moved from the left to the middle. When moving the fader from the right to the middle, the same counts for the volume of channel 1.
When the curve potentiometer is turned to the right, the cross fader will make the volume of channel 2 rise from 0 to maximum very fast in the first fractions of the fader sliding from left towards the middle. When moving the fader from the right to the middle, the same counts for the volume of channel 1.
Fader reverse switches
Channel fader reverse switch.
In the 'NORMAL' position (indication LED is off) the channel fader will fade the channel signal from 0 to maximum by sliding the fader from bottom to top.
In the 'REVERSE' position (incication LED is on) the same will be achieved by sliding the fader in the opposite direction.
Cross fader reverse switch.
In the 'NORMAL' position (indication LED is off) sliding the fader from left to right will result in fading the signal of channel 1 from maximum to 0 and that from channel 2 from 0 to maximum.
In the 'REVERSE' position (indication LED is on) the same will be achieved by sliding from right to left.
The faders used for the channels and the crossfader can be freely interchanged. They can also be replaced with other faders offered by RODEC such as a digital fader.
In order to change or replace faders the scratchplate must be removed. (switch off and disconnect power first!)
You will then be able to remove the faders and you will see 3 pairs of connection ribbons.
There are 4-pole and 10-pole connection ribbons. The 4-pole ribbons can be connected to the connector on the analog faders whereas the 10-pole ribbons fit the connector on the(optional) digital faders. All connection ribbons have an identification which indicates what channel it is used for so no mistake can be made.
Sturdy high-quality analog fader
This versatile digital fader delivers high precision performance in the scratchbox.
External effects can be connected using the FX-insert connectors. There are 2 connectors, left and right, and each one takes a stereo jack that is used for both sending and returning the signal.
The signal is sent through the tip (usually 'left') of the jack and returns through the ring (usually 'right') of the stereo jack.
The signal of the input channels 1 & 2 can be routed to the external effects unit using the FX-insert switch for each channel.
You can now use the FX-insert mix fader to set the proportion of signal without effect (dry signal) and signal with effect (wet signal). When the fader is at the dry position, there will be no signal routed to the effect output, when the fader is at the wet position all the signal will be routed to the effect output.
Route effects to the 3rd channel
Instead of returning the signal from external effects to the channels 1 and 2, you have the possibility to send it to the 3rd input channel.
In order to do so you must send the signal from the tip of the effect insert jacks to the external effect input. However, instead of connecting the effect output to the ring of the effect insert jacks, you connect them to the line input of channel 3.
Press the FX-insert switch of the channel(s) of which you want to send the signal through the effects and set the FX-insert mix fader to 'WET'.
You can now mix the effected signal by using the channel 3 volume and tone controls.
The cut switches can be used in 3 modes and can be placed in 8 directions.
The lever of the cut switch can be moved in two opposite directions for two different switching modes. In one direction it is a momentary switch and the lever will return to the center automatically when released. In the other direction it will stay until you return it to the center. As long as the lever is not in the center the sound will be cut.
You can easily enable or disable either of these switching modes or enable them both. In order to do so the scratchplate must be removed (disconnect the power!) and the cutswitch cable must be plugged in the appropriate connector. Check the video demo to see how it's done.
When the scratchplate is removed you can also change the direction of the cut switches.
Channel 1 & 2 equalizer
Both channel 1 and 2 have 3-band equalizer controls to modify the tone of the sound signal.
Rodec uses very accurate and warm sounding equalizers for all of their mixers. The most frequently occurring problem with equalizers that offer kill functions is the following: when you remove all of the low range frequencies you will inevitably remove parts of the mid range frequencies as well. This also happens when you remove all of the mid range frequencies, the result is you remove parts of the high range frequencies.
This makes the equalizer very inaccurate and this is undesirable for professional recording artists and dj's.
Mono/stereo mode switch
This switch is used to set the mixing panel in mono or stereo mode.
This feature can be very interesting in combination with the balance fader when used with break-records which have a different left and right track.
Both channels 1&2 have a balance control fader.
This fader adjusts the balance between the amount of sound on the left and on the right.
When it is set to the center position, the gain is the same for the left and the right channel.
There are 3 PFL switches to select the signal you want to monitor in the headphones.
Channel 1&2 have a joint PFL-switch which when activated will route the pre-fade signal to the headphones.
Using the PFL CH1-CH2 select fader you can then choose how much of each channel is sent to the headphones.
Channel 3 has its own PFL switch which will send the signal of that channel to the headphones,
The PFL MIX switch will send the MIX signal to the headphones.
Soft Touch knobs
Our potentiometer knobs are specially designed and constructed in 2 layers.
The inner hard plastic creates a sturdy knob with a perfect position feeling. The outer long-life soft-touch rubber provides a perfect feeling and extra grip.
Due to the different colour of both layers these knobs are very visual in the dark.
The Scratchbox fader-knobs were specially designed by our test-team.
Our knobs have a unique thin metal coating built up in 4 layers (Carbon, Copper, Nickel and Chrome).
Due to the special moulding & metal coating these knobs have a supreme feeling.
Dual heaphones jacks
How often have you lost that small-to-large jack adapter for your headphones?
That's why the scratchbox has both a small and a large headphone jack.
Also the mini jack earplug Dj’s will be very happy with this feature!
The scratchbox frontpanel has 2 handles to protect the reverse switches and channel curve knobs. The handles are also helpful if you want to put the mixer in upright position to connect cables.
The polished aluminium scratchplate is super-smooth and protects the dj’s hands.
To avoid obstructions no paint is used, everything on the scratchplate is anodised.
The anodised high-contrast print doesn’t wear out and is very clear in the dark.
The text on the back panel is also printed upside down so you can easily read it when connecting cables at the rear while leaning over the mixer.
The external power supply is connected to the mixer using a screw-on solid metal connector that prevents the cable from being accidentally pulled out.
- Bass +10dB/-21dB @ 100Hz
- Mid +10dB/-21dB @ 1kHz
- High +10dB/-21dB @ 10kHz
Tone controls on Channel3:
- Bass +/-13dB @ 100Hz
- High +/-13dB @ 10kHz
Subsonic filter: -25dB @ 10Hz
- Standard with an AC-adapter of: 230V / 50Hz-60Hz
- On request: 100V-117V / 50Hz-60Hz
- Front: 254mm x 400mm (10" x 9HE)
- Chassis: 224mm x 398mm x 84mm (same height as Technics SL-1210 MKII)
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