So I've been thinking about this project for some time and I think it's time to do it.
I have an Allen and Heath Xone 43C Mixer. It's got an internal soundcard meaning I can connect four decks into it and use them to control music playing on a PC.
A minor inconvenience of this is needing to have the laptop / tablet floating above the decks and mixer.
My original idea was to mount a tablet (Lenovo Miiix 3 - 10") onto the top of the mixer.
This would be very easy to do but I'd be forever bottle-necked with the not ideal (budget) spec of the tablet.
I could use a high performance / lighweight laptop but they are expensive and again, would float about the place.
Then I saw how much empty space was inside the mixer when I was changing the crossfader.
So the idea is this:
Use the empty space inside the mixer and add a motherboard etc.
Mount a screen at the top of the mixer connected to the PC.
Have all the USB ports and functionality of the PC available cleanly.
Benefits of doing this:
An all in one unit would mean not needing a laptop or tablet floating about the decks.
Very easy to setup and transport to gigs.
Less wires overall cluttering up the place.
Lots of USB ports available on the mixer.
Cheaper than buying a Good spec DJ laptop and upgradable.
Having a power supply for the PC contained within the mixer may cause interfearence with the anolouge parts of the mixer. This needs to be investigated.
Heat and ventalation The mixer runs pretty cool without fans as it is. There are ventalation holes already cut in the mixer.
So, this is how much space I have to play with in the mixer - This takes into account the ardware already inside:
Mixer space - 300mm x 210mm x 70mm - The internal soundcard takes about 140mm of the lenth overall leaving 210mm
The rest is empty space, I'll add some photos very soon of the internals
Hardware modificaitons required to the mixer:
Internal mounts for motherboard and PSU.
Pannels/slots cut into the mixer to enable access to the USB ports / PSU.
Mount for the screen added to the top of the deck.
Holes for ventalation.
Parts at first glance -
Motherboard - Gigabyte GA-H81M-S2H Socket 1150 VGA DVI HDMI Micro ATX Motherboard - Size - 22.6cm x 17.4cm
Processor - Intel i5 4460 Quad Core -
Ram - 8 GB DDR3 1866 MHz CL10 DIMM
Power supply - Unsure as of yet
Small PC case - To butcher for parts/mount.
If anybody has any ideas for parts or general suggestions, please feel free to add them. I'll be working on this over the next few months.
I need to research PSUs - Whether they will cause feedback/interference issues with the mixer itself. Maybe get an external PSU if possible.
I Hope you enjoy this project as it moves along.