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The Sound Devices 888 is the third product within the 8-Series, filling the gap between the 833 model and their most advanced 36-track Scorpio mixer-recorder. The 888 sports 20 tracks, 16-channels and eight very low noise 8-Series mic preamplifiers. It ships with several powering options and offers control surface operation by USB connection (via MCU). Let’s take a look!
Sound Devices 888 (Credits: Sound Devices)
One of the features widely used in the industry – the Dugan algorithm for auto-mixing – is also what Sound Devices uses within their product. The idea behind this auto-mixing algorithm is that many microphones cannot be monitored and attenuated at the same time by a single person. Thus, unused channels – when not appropriately adjusted – will bring hiss, reverberation, rumble and other disturbances as noise into the mix. With Dugan’s auto-mixing algorithm or Sound Devices’ own “MixAssist” involved, the 888 can handle auto-mixing for up to 16-channels of audio inputs.
Similar in size to the well-established 788T, the 888 has the following compact dimensions: 5.1 cm x 24.5 cm x 18.5 cm. At 1,83 kg (without batteries attached), this mixer is about 580g heavier than its smaller brother, the 833 (weight: 1,25 kg, without batteries). The 888 is usable in-bag/over the shoulder or within a professional sound cart.
Features well-known from other Sound Devices products, such as Dante support for Ethernet-enabled sound-transmission capabilities, which came with the Scorpio (32 channels Dante I/O) are now coming to the 888, too. The 888 consequently has a notable 16 channels of Dante I/O. With this support, it is amongst the smallest devices featuring this characteristic.
Sound Devices 888 – Right Side – Connectivity Options (Credits: Sounds Devices)
To store all of the recorded data, the 888 comes with 256GB internal storage, just like the 833 and Scorpio, and provides 2 SD card slots. Since this is meant for audio recording – depending on the number of tracks recorded simultaneously, the bit-depth and sample rates chosen – 256 GB possibly store weeks of production recordings onto the device. Since the mixer-recorder can record to those three media simultaneously, SD cards can be turned over to production and for transcription services, while keeping a full backup stored within the device at the same time.
Sound Devices 8-Series (Credits: Sound Devices)
Just like the other 8-Series mixer-recorders, the 888 has an in-built TC generator, AES support (in/out), separate faders and trim controls, dedicated coms, and returns and 2x L-Mount (NP-F series) battery slots with internal charging and device powering capabilities. Of course, other powering options like its TA4 DC input or a smart battery are also available. Additionally, there is another battery included with the TC generator, which will hold the accurate TC for up to 4 hours when power is off, and no other power-source is active.
Sound Devices 888 – Left Side – Audio Inputs, Com Rtn and Headset (Credits: Sounds Devices)
Not available with the MixPre Series by Sound Devices, for example, the 8-Series also has a distinctive and updated architecture and routing functionality. This design allows for every physical input to be fully-routable and sent to any bus, output or track.
The Sound Devices 888 is currently available for pre-order.
What do you think of this portable mixer-recorder? Is this a product you would work with during your productions? Let us know in the comment section beneath.
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Mark Zdunnek, M.A. (BVR) is a German director, producer, and educator at 8 Universities of Applied Sciences. Holding several certificates, he works at fairs, creates articles & reviews, and conducts master classes worldwide. Traveling to 56 countries, he realised many film projects.