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Gemini CS-19/R Club Installation Mixer
David Eserin- DJ Magazine

Gemini never fail to provide pro-spec features for a price that is usually unbeatable. This five-channel club mixer is simple and flexible with a few nice touches to entice. So, what is it capable of?

What makes a club mixer?

The main elements are industry standard connections such as balanced XLR, high quality circuitry, durability and flexible input and output options. There are many other elements to consider according to the application and system's requirements from the mixer, but we were pleasantly surprised with what the CS-19 has to offer.

A well-rounded set of features and connectivity for such a reasonable price makes this mixer an attractive option for smaller clubs and bars that require a large and flexible mixer.

The input selector on every channel enables you to choose any of the four line inputs, phono inputs and front panel Aux channel, making it very useful when mixing multiple sources together and being customisable at the twist of a knob. The front panel Aux and FX loop are great for an install mixer, enabling DJs to plug in a minidisc or effects unit in seconds (using RCA connectors).

There are no less than three microphone inputs (two on the front, one on the back) all with individual gain, level, cue, bass and treble controls. The microphone inputs use Neutrik Combo connectors. XLR and normal jack connection microphones can be used in the same plug, making clumsy converters a thing of the past. The effects loop is also available on the back of the unit using stereo jacks to feed and return with one wire.

Channels one to four have connections for phono with a switch behind the unit for line level inputs on the same connectors. Directly below them are four dedicated line inputs RCA connections.

The outputs on this mixer lend itself well to a bar or club, especially with different listening areas that need individual level control throughout the course of the day. The master output is into either balanced XLR or RCA (phono) with balance control, two zone outputs into ¼ inch jacks with level control, and a booth monitor which reproduces the headphone output.

The master level can be attenuated by six or twelve decibels. A ground lift control and mono switch (affecting master, zone and booth outputs) further allows customisation in complicated configurations.

The build quality is pretty good and gives the impression of a monster mixer using the ever popular and still stylish brushed aluminium faceplate. The unit is quite deep and would best suit rack mounting, but with room for the mixer to hang lower than the level of the turntables, this would be fine. The faceplate metal did seem a little thin and would not stand years of rough handling and gigging without a decent flightcase to protect it.

All the pots and faders are quite rigid and seem like they will hold out, but the rotary knobs gave us the impression that it wouldn't be too long before they loosen up. Install mixers can take a severe beating and only time will tell how these will perform.

In use
There is certainly plenty of space on this mixer for everything to be clearly and logically laid out, which it is. The 'railglide' crossfader with curve control is quite light in operation, and the rotary volume control is smooth and a pleasure to use. However, they are a little too close to the crossfader and can be nudged by the knuckles if you aren't careful.

The EQ pots aren't too close together and give a good cut of bass, mid and treble. The cue buttons feel quite flimsy, but at the same time you could describe them as being smooth.

5 channels (4 phono/4 line/1 aux)
3 microphones
2 FX Loops
Dimensions: 19"w X 10.5"h X 4.75"d
Weight: 1.3kg
Max Output: 20V Peak
S/N Ratio: >80dB

Good points
PFL level meter on each channel
Multiple zones
Versatile connectivity

Bad points
Thin metal casing
Rotary faders seem light

Replacement Parts
The CS-19 and The CS-19/R both come with a three year warranty. All parts are replaceable and if you are still using the unit three years later, parts are very cheap indeed.

Value for money 4
Build quality 3
Functionality 3.5

Five-channel club install mixers under £500 are hard to find with this level of connectivity, and the three year warranty makes this unit a very good buy. The audio quality is acceptable with very low noise levels and good EQ control. There are enough customisable features to appease even the most knit-picking sound engineer.


Review courtesy of DJ Magazine
Copyright 2002 DJ Magazine


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