Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Presonus Studio Live Reliability

Is this shit worse than Berringer? See what a retailer and sound engineers are saying.

I have a retail music store. I have sold 12 units in the last year and 9 of them have come back for several different reasons. The most common reason was a resistor on the PSU would burn up and the desk would not power up. Solution was to replace the PSU or resistor which I now keep one on hand all the time. The other reasons were dead screens, and dead channels.

I stopped selling them because I don't have the time to service this junk anymore.
Also keep in mind that Presonus is too big for they're britches these days. They created a product that they know almost nothing about and can not support it at all. Dont waste your time or money. Buy a X32 if your looking that price range.

Another dissatisfied customer complains:

I had a SL 16.4.2 that I used about a dozen times. On several occasions, the board had glitches, resulting in an entire muting of the console for several seconds. I did find out that if you use the FireWire interface, and that interface for whatever reason gets disrupted, the board will mute. ie, if your computer crashes, or the cable gets unplugged, or the computer goes to sleep, bam, board mute.

However, I did have one instance where the board muted multiple times without being plugged into the computer. It was suggested that faulty power was to blame for this. I didn't see any significant voltage swings during the event, surely nothing that I would have thought could be the cause. My feeling is that if a board MUST be connected to a UPS to function, it's a poor design.

Sound Engineer Rob Dellwood: I mixed on a 16.4.2 last night that had lost all the channel presets after a firmware update. I was able to save the show scene however, as I will be mixing the same band there again in a month. I heard this is a common problem, but not sure how to fix it.

Sound Engineer  Matt Lillie:
I have a 24ch, got it last spring. No issues so far, and I can plug and unplug my FireWire with no dropouts. Ran it last week on a 70kva construction gennie, no issues. I don't run a UPS. There are certainly a lot of goofy things about the board, but reliability hasn't been an issue for me yet. That said, I brought a band a small analog board Friday to get them through after their 16 ch froze up, all channels muted on it and no sound coming out. The guy reflashed it Saturday, and it worked for an hour or so and then the problem resurfaced, same thing, no output. He's sending it back.

Sound Engineer Jurgen Rieman: I had a really bad incident with my presonus some weeks ago. The board stopped during a show and it was a major disaster as I could not get it back up again.
Check out the forums as lots of people have lots of problems. Firmware, power supplies, faders etc.

Maybe the board is ok for studio use where crashes dont matter, but I wont go on stage anymore with this China made junk. Time to look for something else.

Sorry if I sound negative but my own reputation is on the line and I also didn't get paid for the gig. I am also sure they wont book me again :-( 

Sound Engineer Phil Graham: One more singular datapoint for you. The brand new StudioLive 16.4.2 I purchased for our church has been hopelessly unreliable since the moment I first powered it up. I'm chalking it up to infant mortality. It went back to Presonus today. I'll write a followup after I get it back and let it bake with pink noise for a couple of days straight.

P.S. Their tech support guy Jason has been responsive, candid, and helpful. Its not quite "call Yamaha in the middle of the night" level of support, but I've been pleased with the level of help and response turnaround. Jason is a big reason why this console hasn't yet "magically" morphed into an 01V

P.P.S. The console is simple to use and operate, and iPad control works as advertised. Both are a boon for our inexperienced volunteers. If they would give me the option to narrow up the Q of both semi-parametric Q settings, I'd be pretty happy on it, too.

Who designed the piece of SHIT?!

There are three pages of complaints like the ones above.  Based on real world use, Presonus Studio Live is evtremely unreliable. When you go to the the Sound Forum's Site you'll see the usual Presonus plants blaming the users.


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  2. I should go to presonus and troll the shit out of them.