Jean Poole has posted a practical and personal review of Numark’s AVM02 audio/video mixer (site | on CDM):


There are video mixers, there are audio mixers. Combining them into one unit mostly makes sense if you want to mix both simultaneously. One smooth crossfade that leaves your other hand free for shaking a tambourine / zooming in on the sword swallowers contact microphone / scratching OJ Simpson video / making figure 8 patterns in the air with a wii controller / swirling the mike above your head / sipping your coconut juice or you know, clicking your mouse. And it’s just nice to have the option of that easy A+V sync.

It’s been almost 2 years since I bought and reviewed my AVM02, and in that time it’s become an indispensable part of my rig. The AVM02 is almost the definition of a “workhorse”, steadfastly doing its job without hassle or complexity. I’m surprised that more visualists aren’t using them, considering that it’s cheaper than the V4, has better video input/output options, and does audio as well.

The effects are indeed truly terrible, but I personally think that mixer effects are there to sell units to people who don’t understand the technology. Surely effects are happening at the source these days? Even Pioneer’s Giant Expensive Thing‘s exciting touch screen effects start to look hackneyed after the 3rd time they’re trotted out.

Jean picked up a weakness I hadn’t noticed: Master fade for video (and Audio, I guess). Sure, you can choose a black background colour on one video channel, put all of the audio inputs to one side of the crossfader and mix to black/silent, but a single knob or fader for the whole shebang would be a much better solution, and fitting for the “installation mixer” role.

The lack of MIDI still really shines out. Especially after having spent a year with the everything-controllable-via-numbers Vixid, this should be amongst the first priorities for any hardware developer, as it exponentially amplifies the capabilities of the device.

It has been 2 years though, so I’m sure Numark are readying to explode minds with the AVM03, or perhaps they’ll pull an Edirol, wait 10 years and jump straight to the AVM08.

Test Driving the Numark AVM02 –

  • scrumark

    I only bought one piece of Numark gear ever. The HDX. It was gorgeous, the design seemed brilliant, it quickly became an indispensable part of my rig, and then it broke.

    It took close to 6 months for Numark to repair it under my warranty and throughout that time I was patronized and told several different crazy stories (a/k/a outright lies) by phone support guys. When I finally got it back i didn't even open the box. It went right onto Craigslist and out the door.

    I really want to like Numark, and I used to be interested in the AVM02. But I work too hard for my $$ for them to get any of it ever again.

  • Jaymis

    @scrumark (hah): That's completely unforgivable. Big companies need to understand that its their support staff, just as much as their designers and creators, who make an impression on customers.

    Fortunately, I don't think the lack of quality there extends to their engineers, because the AVM02 has been fantastic for me. Rack-mounted in a road case, it toured thousands of kilometers all around Australia, has been dropped, plugged and unplugged, and generally mistreated, all to no effect.

  • Kyle

    @ Jaymis, Wow you're super lucky. I've had mine for 3 years and enough days to count on 2 hands. It has so far gone down twice (and within a week of my show where the AVM02 was a must have). I've got the full Numark rig, DVD01, AVM02, and the VM03 markII. When this unit works, it's stellar, and eye catcher and I find myself always talking to people because everyone wants to know about it.

    The last time this unit was repaired was in April 2009, I got the unit back in May 2009. I used it for a show at a theater (4 Days), 3 videodances (all just a few hours) and a corporate gig (8 hours). So the average life time of the Numark AVM02 is around 6 days of continuous use. Now that I've got a show on Friday (it's Tuesday) the unit crapped out (it went down last night but nothing I can do till everything opens). The first time the unit crashed I was sitting at rehearsals for a tour.

    The AVM02 seems to know when it's needed and just quits so it doesn't have to work. It's just a shame that such a great product, isn't all that great.

  • Jaymis Loveday

    Wow Kyle. That totally sucks. I actually use mine in my studio as my main audio mixer, so it's on at least 12 hours a day, 365 days a year. Still yet to have a problem. It's definitely a great product.. I'd expect that you have a bad unit.