Behringer X32 vs PreSonus StudioLive Series III 32 Channel

Edit Oct 18 (again) I just want to point out that I am not a professional, and this is definitely a biased article towards PreSonus. I have been asked multiple times what I think about the new PreSonus board compared to other boards, namely the X32. Ive done my best to correct factual errors, but please don’t take this as Gods Golden Truth, this is simply my experiences with the two boards and how I think PreSonus is poised to become the new industry standard with this board (in this price range) unless Behringer can respond accordingly. If you want more detailed information on the boards I would encourage you to check the respective websites. Also I did not go into much depth with the DAW functionality of either board since 1) I have not used it much 2) PreSonus’ DAW integration is not yet available. If you have any other questions feel free to comment below or tweet me @lyndondueck and I’ll do my best to answer your questions and provide insight as to my opinions on both boards. 

When PreSonus announced the PreSonus StudioLive Series III, I was ecstatic. I became a fan of the PreSonus mixers after using their Series I and Series II mixers. The tone and sound processing is what sold me, but the ingenuity and forwarding thinking to make it easy to use a digital board while still trying to stay relevant in the digital age were all factors that made me into a PreSonus fanboy. The only thing that I wished for was a bit more of a digital interface (The Series I and II are more analog focused) and some more modern features that sound boards like the Behringer X32 had made standard, so when the Series III came out I was eager to see if it lived up to the hype and if it matched to other boards that were dubbed “industry standards.” (Spoiler Alert, it did)

I’ve used both the Behringer X32 and the StudioLive SIII so I’m going to go ahead and give my opinion and try not to be biased at all…

For context, I installed a PreSonus SIII in my home church and use a Behringer X32 at Chapel Services at a Bible College and various other events.

First Impressions

Right off the bat the PreSonus gets a win for aesthetics. The Blues and Blacks mesh nicely to create a very visually appealing board, coupled with the fact that everything is laid out in such a way that navigating the board is easy, its an obvious win in my book. The X32 maintains a darker look with dark greys and less focus on colours except for coloured LEDs in some places. This may be of benefit to those who are looking to maintain a dark aesthetic, but to me it actually makes it harder to navigate. The PreSonus has a lighter workspace on the faders, and then a darker workspace where the buttons and LEDs can be found allowing for a clear separation of sections and making it easier for my eyes to quickly and visually understand different areas of the board.

The build quality of the PreSonus is premium with a nice aluminum finish. The buttons are responsive and colourful, the touchscreen is a nice touch (no pun intended) as well. The knobs on the Fat Channel are easy to rotate and feel satisfying. PreSonus also includes a spot to place a tablet making it easy to have additional information displayed at your finger tips (their App is fantastic, more on this later) but its also a great resting place for when you aren’t walking around the venue with the iPad. The faders feel great and are very responsive, they are motorized as well. The channel strip screens are bright and easy to see, though they only contain one colour (white). Each of the buttons on the channel strips are colour customizable as well so you can group sets of instruments into different colour codes.

Edit Oct 18: I think its important to note that the Series III StudioLive has been completely redesigned compared to its predecessors. A lot of people that have had experiences with the previous models may not even look at this model, but its important to treat it as something entirely brand new, because it is. And its worth talking about. I truly believe that its going to become the new industry standard over competitors like the X32.

The X32 also includes a premium build quality. An aluminum finish with plastic sides with a nice grip if you are using this board on the road and are constantly setting it up and tearing it down. It does lack a touch screen, but there is a display for seeing what you are currently working on. The channel strips displays can be customized with various colours making it incredibly easy to distinct different groups of instruments (if you have a colour coded system). It also has a slightly larger input signal LED light strip compared to the PreSonus. The motorized faders feel great, and the buttons are responsive. The knobs for adjusting EQs and settings leave much to be desired with no satisfaction when rotating. I also find my finger slipping off them frequently when I’m trying to do precise adjustments. The X32 also includes a spot to place your phone (Im assuming) but its so small it doesn’t fit my iPhone 7 and likely doesn’t fit many other modern smartphones that are getting bigger and bigger. I guess you could place a DB meter device here if you wanted? But right now it just looks like wasted space and Id rather see something like that iPad holder on the PreSonus.


Board Navigation and User Experience

When the StudioLive Series I came out, PreSonus began working on the “Fat Channel” experience. This was a section of the board that contained all of your adjustments for EQ’s, compression, gates, and more. You would press the select button for the channel/aux/section you wanted to edit and then your fat channel was switched to editing this selection. One of the major things that made PreSonus lag behind on the Series I & II was the heavy emphasis on an Analog experience. The board looked like an analog board, especially the way that everything lined up, this made it confusing when you would try to edit something and not realizing you first had to hit the select button to get the whole strip to become your workspace. PreSonus addresses this in the Series III by creating clear definition between the faders and the fat channel. The Fat Channel has been redesigned to be sleeker and easier to use, but also contains more features. When you hit select on a channel, the Fat Channel AND the touchscreen both switch to the selected channel. Say you want to edit EQ’s for example, you can choose to use the tactile knobs on the Fat Channel to adjust, while simultaneously getting a live look at your EQ waveforms on the touch screen. You can also choose to exclusively use the touch screen controls if you want.

In contrast, the X32 relies solely on knobs to edit EQ’s and other settings. There is a dedicated Equalizer section that can be accessed by hitting select and then turning the EQ knobs. While this gives a more familiar Analog experience, I found it cumbersome compared to the StudioLive. The lack of touchscreen was also frustrating. I found myself time after time touching the X32’s screen and getting frustrated with the lack of response. Instead there are knobs below the screen that correspond to different settings currently visible on the touch screen. The X32 does however provide quick access to different settings pages with buttons to the right of the screen, compared to the “home” screen on the PreSonus.

One thing that I was most surprised about on the X32 was the lack of user functions. On the PreSonus, you can set up a customizable layout for your faders. Because its rare that I would use all 32 channels of inputs on the PreSonus on any given Sunday, I would move all my vocals/instruments to the left hand side, and then use the 8 channels to the right of the main fader as special faders for FX, Subwoofer Master, DCA groups and more. This made it easy to not have to switch back and forth between different pages and views, something that I find myself doing CONSTANTLY on the X32. On the X32 because I have drums on 1-16 and some guitars on 17-32, I have to constantly switch back and forth when I want to boost or reduce volume of any given instrument. There is a dedicated area for BUS masters which is handy for our FX’s that we run, but I find that this is mostly wasted space due to the way we run monitors on the X32 (using the power play system). The X32 does have 4 user assign knobs on the right hand side along with 8 buttons, but I find that these pale in comparison to the full user programability of the StudioLive.

Because of the layout of the X32 I find myself tripping over areas and getting confused as to where I am. Am I editing a bus? an FX? Or am I on the main FOH? I can’t tell you how many times Ive accidentally started editing a monitor mix because I thought I was in the FOH. I think the biggest shortcoming here is the fact that the selection buttons are scattered throughout various places on the board whereas on the PreSonus, any fader edit selections are on the left, so I can always quickly glance to the left and know right away what I am editing.

The solo, select and mute buttons on the PreSonus are a little close together so if you aren’t paying attention sometimes it can be easy to accidentally mute something you meant to solo. These buttons are much more spaced out on the X32.

All in all, for board navigation, the StudioLive gets a win from me here.

Mix Buses

Both boards feature 16 buses. The PreSonus has 12 XLR and 4 TRS outputs and the X32 has 16 XLR outs.

The X32 requires you to use a bus if you want to mix in FX which causes you to lose potential monitor mixes where as the PreSonus has 4 dedicated FX busses on top of the 16 mix outputs. This is huge especially when working with larger mixes.

Another win for PreSonus.

Built In FX

Both boards come with a modest selection of built in FX. The FX that come prepackaged with the X32 I have had more success with in terms of quality and sound. Both companies offer additional sound downloads and you can use a laptop to run more FX. Right out of the box, I would be tempted to give X32 the win, however, because they force you to use one of your busses here, they get the L from me. The fact that I have 4 separate FX busses on top of the 16 in the StudioLive is enough to grant them a win…just use the FX from their website or your own via a computer…

Sound Processing and Tone

Ive always been a fan of how the sound processing in the PreSonus is. The X32 I struggle to get a sound I truly enjoy, even after spending a great deal of time EQing. The EQ system is pretty basic on the X32 whereas on the PreSonus you can choose from different signal processing presets including Vintage and Passive EQ, tube and FET compressor and more. Its really flexible.

Rear Connections

The PreSonus features 32 XLR inputs (16 of which double as TRS inputs). It also includes various Aux and Tape inputs. I had no shortage of inputs while using this board. It also comes loaded with a USB port and 2 ethernet ports. 1 for controlling the board, and 1 for running a digital snake (which until this month was not available). Being able to plug a laptop in via USB and get full control of the board and full 40 track recording is awesome. Something that the X32 lacks. You can buy an X32 with an USB expansion card, but I could never get the darn USB port to work, apparently it was never enabled according to some reddit posts I saw.

Both boards feature networking for running iPads and other mobile devices to control the sound board and monitor mixes. A mainstay in modern sound.

Behringer has had a digital snake solution out for a while, PreSonus only recently came out with their digital snake that supports the Series III (which uses AV/B networking, the only soundboard to currently use the protocol).

iPad/Mobile/Desktop Apps

I’ll be frank, the UC Surface App for the PreSonus StudioLive Series III is the best mobile app for a soundboard that I have used, and I’ve used a lot of them. It looks beautiful, it works very well, and its easy to navigate, which is the biggest thing. With the X32 app I find it hard to navigate, while it has most of the same features, its just hard to use.

One of the great things about the PreSonus app is that it allows you to setup different views. I can setup a meter view to see all incoming and outgoing signals and place my iPad on the convenient iPad holder, and then setup my MacBook as a dedicated Fat Channel editor/viewer. If you run multiple tablets you could have mounts around your board to give various views and overviews so you know whats going on with various sections of your board at all times. The X32 app is merely a control app, which is great if you want to simply gain control while walking around the venue, but it doesn’t provide anything meaningful like the UC Surface App.

Edit Oct 18: I’ve been told that PC apps are quite in-depth and offer a lot of features, but again I found them hard to look at and navigate. Maybe I’m living in the millennial era of “make it look pretty” but to me its a huge plus if it looks great and provides the same functions.


The StudioLive Series III has a dedicated section for recording, which is nice if you are using this board as a studio board or just like to record everything. You stick an SD card in, hit record and away you go, take the SD card out after and put it into a laptop with Studio One (included with the board!!!) to edit your recording and export it for the masses. The PreSonus features full 40 track recording to the SD card.

The X32 does allow you to record to USB but there aren’t any recording buttons that are front and centre so it requires a few extra steps. The X32 does also allow 2 track recording to a USB stick.


Scenes work mostly the same between the two boards. You can save everything (including Mic Pre-amps now!!!). You are required to save scenes to a USB stick on the X32 which means if you just bought this board and don’t have a USB stick, you’ll be heading back to the store to grab one. A bit of a bummer, however the benefit of this is the ability to save your scenes and take them with you so you know no one will mess up your stuff, great if you have multiple people using the board.

The StudioLive does not have a USB port so you can’t save scenes to a USB stick. It saves them internally to the board. You do have the option to copy scenes to a computer if you have a computer plugged in, so this could be a way to back up your scenes to prevent them from being messed up by nosy people.

Edit Oct 18: It was pointed out to me in a reddit post that the X32 does indeed have scene saving to the system itself. I personally never got this to work as intended, it saves scene names but not scene settings, so I am not sure if there is an issue with the board or the configuration we have.


At the end of the day, both of these boards complete the same objective and have very similar feature sets. What sets the StudioLive apart from the X32 is the attention to detail PreSonus has taken in everything from the aesthetic of the unit, to the placement of features on the board, navigation and more. I find myself enjoying using the Presonus way more then the X32. Using the X32 has become a bit of a chore, and just isn’t fun to use. If you already own an X32 should you jump over to the PreSonus? If you have a disposable income, sure, but you aren’t going to gain much other then a more pleasant user experience.

If you are looking to buy a new board and dont already own digital, I would definitely recommend the StudioLive Series III. Now that they have their digital snake option coming out, its truly a game changer and is going to give the rest of the boards in its class a run for their money.

If I missed anything, let me know down below and I’ll be sure to add it in! Please note, I am not a trained audio professional, my views are my own.

Edit Oct 18:

Apparently PreSonus liked what I had to say, thanks guys! You guys are killing it and I won’t be surprised if the StudioLive Series III becomes the industry standard. Other companies should be wary.


Edit 2 Oct 18: Please note that this is a comparison of the Series III, not the 32 AI or earlier versions of the PreSonus, which I will agree, leave much to be desired. The Series III is a major step up compared to previous PreSonus boards and those who actually take a look at them will be surprised how different they are from their predecessors.

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  • Steve Davis

    Good article, but as you said your bias does show through, I will want to get my hands on one before making a purchase, but you definitely need to spend some more time with learning the X32 as the USB recording or use of waves plugins is awesome, and yes you can use the computer program “X32 Edit” and record over the same USB connection. You should also check out the 3rd party Android app “MixingStation” it has many of the features that you said made the PreSonus app stand out, and has the bonus of working on $150.00 or less tablets instead of $600+ iPads.

    • Lyndon Dueck

      I dont know if I mentioned it but I had no luck getting USB connectivity to work and many posts I researched online stated that the USB port didnt work properly for them either. Not sure what the deal is here.

      My biggest thing is the overall user experience on the PreSonus is way more pleasant and its just a chore to find and use things on the X32. I already had iPads before so buying an Android App specifically for mixing isnt economical for me.

      • Steve Davis

        Thanks for responding, it may be that you have a defective USB card as I had no (after installing the correct drivers) issues connecting either an old windows laptop (could run edit and record multichannel but not enough power to run effects) or either of my Mackbooks. Have you made sure that you have the correct drivers installed (Windows only) since there are 2 different cards? I have used the series 1 PreSonus and do appreciate them but the X32 is FAR superior in sound quality (the venues that I have been in work much better with the “warm” preamps vers the “cold” (some would say more accurate ) ones) and features as well as (to me) ease of use. I definitely want to try one of the series 3 boards before I recommend a purchase. I also want to try the Yamaha TF series but have been using a QU16 and do NOT like it.

        • Lyndon Dueck

          I personally find the tone on the series 3 to be far better then the previous presonus and the x32

          • Steve Davis

            Awesome, like I said I do want to touch and hear one.

      • Tele' O'neil

        Your Comment regarding
        Edit Oct 18: It was pointed out to me in a reddit post that the X32 does indeed have scene saving to the system itself. I personally never got this to work as intended, it saves scene names but not scene settings, so I am not sure if there is an issue with the board or the configuration we have.
        My response here is that you must be part of the group of individuals who are smarter than the printed manuals. Had you read the X32 / M32 manuals you would have found the following.
        Regarding scene saves, there are check boxes to the right of the SCENE SAVE function that need to be checked off so the software knows what items will be included in the SCENE SAVE you are performing.
        Regarding the USB recording that you can’t seem to initiate, again there is a setup page devoted to each of the expansion cards that are currently installed in the mixer. The card needs to be setup depending on what you want to include in the recording. Each channel strip, pre/post EQ & Comp settings, FX settings etc. can be selected depending upon the users settings prior to any recording taking place.
        The external USB / DANTE / MADI / ADAT optional ports allow each mixer to be setup to work in it’s specific environment with very little interaction other than the initial setup so the routing is established prior to the usage. At that point the mixer becomes integrated with your recording needs & requires no further tweaking.
        Along with a few responders here you’ve mentioned your EQ was so much more musical than the X32 / M32 mixers but after using my StudioLive 24.4.2 for two years I struggled with EQ feedback with only two mics plugged in. My wife & I perform as a Duo in Calgary, Alberta, Canada in some of the local Pubs & had some of the worst case of feedback I have ever experienced in all the years of my playing. This mixer cost me $3,895 (Canadian) @ Long & McQuade & the display became unreadable after 3 years of usage so I replaced the LCD screen & a year later my Power Supply started spitting & screaming nasty sounds that needed to be repaired. I called Presonus for a schematic so I could repair it myself & they simply refused claiming they had a repair network in place to deal with faulty issues. Upon checking with the repair center that was located in Toronto the shipping was over $400 both ways & the repair was a standard fixed fee of $480. Are you kidding me? $880 to repair this mixer! Wow, no way I’m going to spend that kind of money!
        I used to run a repair depot for Fender, Peavey, & few other brands back in the 90’s so I thought they would forward me a schematic so I could personally repair the mixer but they wouldn’t go for it. I took the mixer to a local shop & had the repair performed for $265 so after spending roughly $365 on repairs & $3,895 on the initial purchase I took it to Long & McQuade & they gave me $700 on trade (it was in pristine condition & brought back in the original boxes with manuals) & I proceeded to trade it in for a Behringer X32 Producer. The X32 Producer is a rackmount mixer & using the same Audix OMx3B mics we have never had any issues with feedback. The high end EQ point is softer & more musical sounding than the Presonus 24.4.2 mixer. The FX on the X32 / M32 are an absolute joy to use & listen to whereas the Presonus EQ was annoying & effects were absolutely unbearable to listen to. The difference was night & day not only in sound quality but in hans on usage.
        I’m not in the mood of criticizing something I’ve never used nor get on the bandwagon & post things about something that isn’t true. I don’t sell the stuff & I don’t work for these companies but I do have ears & I also work with these products for 10 to 16 hours daily in my studio where I use a M32 Midas.
        I won’t endorse any of these mixers because they all seem to have a shortfall in one department or another but I will tell it like it is regardless of the hype or someone else’s opinion that they present. I’m sure that Presonus has learned many lessons from their previous products they have manufactured but they are going to have to work hard to get my respect & confidence back before I spend another dime purchasing their products.
        Presonus needs to provide an optional slot other than the AVB that seems to only have MOTU as the only other builder heavily committed to the AVB protocol. DANTE, MADI, THUNDERBOLT 3+ & even Firewire 800+ should all be considered as options because everyone is involved in investing in what they initially started with & don’t want to re-invest into a new protocol.
        On another note the touch screen on the new StudioLive Series 111 mixer needs to be larger & tiltable. After demoing the StudioLive Series 111 mixer in the store, I by far prefer the M32 Midas LCD screen because it is at a position where I can see it sitting down while with the StudioLive Series 111 I have to stand up to get a better view of the contents & controls.
        I also wish that the mixers came with 2 or more HDMI ports so we could plug in a 27″ parallel touchscreen LCD & a second screen for plugin control.
        All this stuff is coming in the very near future so I think it’s time they started building a complete solution rather than bits & pieces.
        Cheers, another Canadians perspective.

        • Lyndon Dueck

          Thanks for the comment, sorry it took me a while to respond.

          I actually have read through the manual, and have worked with a professional (has the piece of paper) sound engineer who has a lot more hours on this board than I do and we both run into a lot of the same issues.

          I am aware of the scene safes and since writing this article am having more luck getting consistent saves to the machine (with a firmware update), though sometimes a USB stick needs to be present for it to work, even if you aren’t saving/recalling the scenes from the stick. Its super finicky, so if you are saying otherwise I imagine its a problem with our unit.

          USB recording works, but its limited to 2-channel recording as stated. VS the PreSonus which has full 40 track recording to SD Card. I haven’t gotten around to using the 32 in/out USB card but imagine that “solves” a lot of these problems. However its just cumbersome. Though Behringer has announced a new expansion card with SD card slot which should address some of this.

          Also as I mentioned (many times), this is a comparison of the StudioLive Series III which is a complete overhaul of previous units like the StudioLive 24.4.2 you mentioned. I have a 24.4.2 as well and the tone is VASTLY different then the Series III. Many people assume that the Series III is a minor update, or the same as the older PreSonus boards, which is definitely not the case.

          I think the reason why they haven’t adopted thunderbolt has more to do with the expensive licensing and peripheral costs rather then usability. You can accomplish very similar with USB, which they have added on this board. You can use the USB port for recording, mixing, control, audio playback, etc. Firewire is dead, USB 3 transfers way faster then FireWire, there is no need to have it, especially when most new computers don’t have this port.

          While I can see your argument for the tillable LCD screen, I personally stand when I’m mixing so I don’t find it to be a problem. But you can also add multiple tablet + computer screens to show you the same or different layouts. For example, often I had my tablet for mixing so I could grab and go around the room and then just quickly glance at EQ settings I was adjusting when I was at the board, and then I would have my laptop there showing my different In/out meters. You can customize the screens how you like so you could have multiple tablets or computers showing you different information. I also don’t see the need for the HDMI ports with this functionality here.

          Now the PreSonus has finish releasing their other AVB products (the monitor control station, the stage boxes, the rack mounted mixers, the AVB switches, etc), its easy to get a full package that works. I think the AVB protocol will be more widely used compared to older Dante and AES protocols simply because of the amount of information you can send through a single line.

          I appreciate your input, but I would suggest giving the Series III a shot before you throw it away. People are too quick to judge it based on what PreSonus has done in the past. I don’t think thats fair. But at the same time, the X32 is very old as well, so its hard to compare something that old that is missing features and “modernization” that the PreSonus Series III offers.

        • Ryan

          I had to pay $456 shipping to have my X32 repaired [anger level 1]. I suspect that’s pretty standard practice, though, so we can’t really vilify PreSonus on that point. The best part of my story? The X32 came back a couple of weeks later [anger level 2] with the supposedly defective part replaced, and the problem was still there [anger level 3]! Turns out the problem wasn’t with the board, but with the stage box [anger level 4]. So I got to ship that in, too [anger level 5]!! That repair made 2 weeks seem like a red-eye flight… I believe that one took about 2 months [anger level 6]. By that point, we’d already decided to put our board “on stage” and just use the iPad to control it, so I haven’t actually tested the stage box since it came back. I *assume* it works now.

          All of that aside, I have found the X32 to be very feature-loaded for it’s price point. There is way more configuration than I, a confessed non-sound engineer, would ever consider using. It sure can do a lot. It’s really impressive. That said, apart from fairly basic setup and operation, digging in and making the X32 work the way we wanted was one of the most time-consuming, maddening, and ultimately fruitless efforts in my career. I found the configuration process incredibly confusing, anything but intuitive, and in many cases backwards! There has been very little fun in my experience with actually using the X32. It has added way more frustration than awesome moments, and I have doubted my decision to leave the PS Series I board I have. But I do need some of the features found on the X32 that the old PreSonus didn’t have, so I’m researching the StudioLive Series III stuff. To that end, Lyndon, your article has been immensely helpful. Thank you, sir. I’m sold, and will be rejoining the PreSonus clan as soon as possible.

          To anyone else in the market for a cheap digital board, I’ve got a great X32 I’m selling. Let me know!

          • Lyndon Dueck

            Glad I could be of service! Good luck with the new board and let me know if you need any help/guidance/direction on getting it set up. I’d love to chat and help you get it working to your needs!

  • Tim Miller

    Helpful comparison. I’m a bit biased myself, too, and have had 4 PreSonus boards for different venues. But it’s been a while and your article helped me get up to speed on the current offerings of both systems.

    • Lyndon Dueck

      Glad to help!

  • Tim

    I agree with most of your comments about the x32, it just feels clunky to me. Maybe it’s the lack of touch screen, maybe it’s the lack of well laid out knobs for channel settings, or it could be how many button presses it takes to get anywhere. I have only been on the Presonus Series III at a training session over at Full Compass. I also have extensive use of QU series from Allen and Heath. The Presonus I only heard over headphones. But the effects, like the plate reverb seemed to me be leaps ahead of two things, first the old 24.4.2 (duh) and second yes even better than the x32, maybe not leaps and bounds, but to my ears the presonus is simply better sounding in the effects department. Again short time with it… As far as how the qu fits in, too few outs IMHO. We often have 9-10 people, I need 10 mono outs. We are a smaller Church, and have a x32 now, and are going to be moving to something with a more simple interface next year, which by my thoughts the Series III wins in so many categories it’s not even funny. Just my humble and hopefully informed enough opinions.

    • Lyndon Dueck

      I installed a PreSonus Series III in my church and absolutely loved it, it’s been great. Highly recommend it to any church with a small budget but looking to modernize their sound.

  • Marinel Gheorghilaș

    I am from Romania. I used Presonus SL series I (16.4.2). Now I would like to buy from a digital mixer (I use Midas Venice F16). But I am not determined; Midas M32 or Presonus SL 24 series III. Please, I would like to help with some of your opinions.

    • Lyndon Dueck

      Hey Marinel,

      Midas actually makes the Behringer X32, the Midas M32 is very similar. You could see my thoughts on the X32 and most of those would probably apply to the M32. If given the choice, I would personally go for the PreSonus StudioLive 32.

      Hope this helps.

  • Marinel Gheorghilaș

    I’m glad to read opinions (even if they are contradictory) from the users and connoisseurs of the two mixers (Midas M32 and Studiolive series III). I was in the instrument store where I found M32 and I saw it, I tested it. The SL III series I still do not find in the stores near me (about two weeks later I will be able to test this series too.) Personally I liked Presonus from the first series, but I had a lot of disappointments (I had 16.4.2). And I gave up on the idea of ​​having a digital mixer. I use an analogue mixer (Midas Venice F16) that has great sound, thanks to this mixer I’m thinking of buying M32 from Midas But the SL series III from Presonus offers the possibility of multitrack recording without you need a computer (thanks to the Capture software) If Presonus improved the sound then the SL series III would be the mixer I would buy, you have everything you want me to think about and the fact that the M32 is a slightly older mixer I refer to technology); SL ​​III is much newer and I hope the Presonus have improved the sound.
    At this point I would like to know your opinions if I think well the year that was designed and realized (sound quality and technological progress due to the year of the two mixers).
    On SL Series III I like and IMPUT channels (XLR or TRS); I’m not conditioned to have only XLR cables. SL III series I saw only on the Presonus site and watched the videos posted on the Media section of this site.
         With your feedback I hope to make the best decision and take the best mixer in terms of quality / price ratio.
        I await your advice and thank you in advance for them.
          They will help me.

    • Lyndon Dueck

      The tone of the Studio Live Series III outperforms the M32/X32 in my opinion. You have to remember that the X32/M32 are coming up on 10 years old without significant updates so buying them at this stage is not advised (in my opinion).

      The tone and sound of the PreSonus SIII is far better/different then its previous consoles so if you are looking for a fresh take, this might be it. To me at least, its way better then the X32/M32.

      It also has a built in SD card slot so you can record 40 multi track recordings right to the SD card and then edit later with the included StudioOne. If $4000 is your budget and you are on the fence between the X32/M32 and a SIII, go with the SIII, you won’t be disappointed. Of course there are better, more expensive boards out there, but I really like what PreSonus has done with this board.

      • Dan Hamstra

        We are looking at options for replacing the mixer in our church (first gen PreSonus 24.4.2) and I came across your comparison of 2 of the boards we’re considering. I agree with much of what you’re saying of the pros/cons of each device in the relatively limited areas where I have enough experience to actually form an opinion. But, your obvious bias towards PreSonus (which you readily acknowledge) has led you to “stretch” your criticism of X32/M322 on at least one point that is readily verified as incorrect and overlook some areas where Behringer/Midas products (in my opinion) have a significant advantage.

        The X32 was released in July 2012, less than 6 years before your “coming up on 10 years” comment above. The M32 was announced in January 2014, about 4 years before this comment. When you consider that PreSonus shipped the first StudioLive mixers in 2009 without motorized faders and scribble strips (probably to meet a price point) and it took them almost 10 years (wait, 2017-2009=8 years) to develop a truly viable competitor to the X32 & M32 (which were 5 & 3 years old when the SL series III started shipping) highlights one of the biggest problem areas PreSonus will have even if their newer product has better sound and superior workflow. They still have to catch up on the number of people who know how to run the X32 family of products. They also have to play catch up on the amount of 3rd party software and hardware that is compatible.

        If Behringer/Midas introduce an X32/M32 “version 2” with sound similar to or better than the current StudioLive, PreSonus would probably have to cut their price by 20-30% (depending on the new X32 price), even if the PreSonus still has a better workflow for most users.

        The main AV person at our church would prefer to stay PreSonus if possible and I’m leaning that way also. But we also know that when it comes to allowing musicians to personalize their mix (not a big thing for us today but, maybe in the future?), stage box/expansion options, finding “kids” to run sound (there seem to be X32’s and XAir’s everywhere), and maybe automix etc kind of things, the Behringer market share gives us lots of options and the only “plus” we see to StudioLive is workflow familiarity.

        I don’t mix “tough stuff” but I do mix live stuff regularly in a handful of venues and get asked to mix randomly or at least lend a hand in many other. I’m not a recording guy, other than an archive recording of the house feed. I can’t comment very well on the pros/cons of each of the following boards in terms of features, I’m just pointing out what I see installed as an insight into market share. The analog mixers I bump into are mostly Mackies. When it comes to digital, the only PreSonus board I’ve seen used is at our church. I’ve used Yamaha LS9s at 2 or 3 places, an 01v at 1 venue, and a TF in 1 location. I’ve used X32s in at least 5 locations and have also run an XAir with an iPad at a few places. I’ve also run a couple of Allen Heath’s (iLive and a QU). Except for the TF, the Yamaha’s tend to be at places that went digital before the X32 came out. I’m most familiar with the Yamaha QL-5 but that’s a whole different price/application and my level of usage at that venue doesn’t even scratch the surface of what that board can do.

        My point? Workflow is important. Sound is important. Expand-ability is important. Recording is important. Product support/reliability is important. Price is important. In my “church application” (fixed install, variety of volunteer operators, minimal recording needs) almost anything “current” will be reliable enough and sound good enough so operator ease of use/training is probably the most important “feature” and that’s why my bias is towards PreSonus.

        In situations where there’s one or more experienced operators who are going to be familiar with the board (home studio, mobile rig, school auditorium with a consistent “paid” operator), other features/needs might be more important than the UI or lack of a specific feature. What I see most people putting in (can’t speak to recording, I do live) is X32/M32. Side note, a friend of mine who does a lot of studio work loves his M32 and got rid of a bunch of MOTU stuff after he got it. Maybe Behringer will lose market share to PreSonus but Yamaha, Allen Heath, and many others have had viable boards for a few years and Behringer still seems to ship way more than anyone else in this price range.

  • Ronnie

    Out of all these comments price was never mentioned, PreSonus series lll will cost you $1000 more than the X32, that’s a big deal compared to a mixer that costs 3 grand and there are pros and cons to both mixers. Just my 2 cents.

    • Lyndon Dueck

      X32 has been reduced in price due to its age.

  • Jonathan Fegel

    I am a user of BOTH the X32 and presonus studiolive 24(series ii). I much prefer the x32. This new presonus caught my eye with the daw control though….

    I really appreciate you writing this review.
    It’s helpful!
    I must say as others have, a number of the negative comments in the comparrison, about the X32, were either malfunctions or user error.

    I’d also like to point out you can run 8 effects engines on the x32, instead of 4. I’ve never had an issue with the EQ section knobs, but I don’t care for the ones under the screen. I’ve mixed over 800 shows on the x32, only had a bad fader and a stiky mute button. Both are pretty easy fixes.

    With mixing station on my phone and a computer, I can get quickly to places with out changing layers.

    Also if anyone is a WAVES Soundgrid user, their integration is the cheapest into the platform.

    Do you really use 16 channels to mic drums? I usually end up with 8 or 10… but for 16, if you use the DCA’s you can avoid flipping layers (depending…)

    But again, thanks for the info.

    • Lyndon Dueck

      I’m always learning and have learnt a lot about this board since I originally wrote this review, I still don’t like it compared to the PreSonus.

      Not sure what you mean by 16 channels to mic drums? Maybe you mis-read or I mis-described something. I can see how you can use DCA’s to create “custom user layouts” but its not a true user layout like other boards. I just wish Behringer would release an user functionality update to allow custom layouts, but since there is a lack of user button on the board I don’t see this happening.

      • Jonathan Fegel

        You mentioned that you had drums on 1-16 and some guitars on 17-32.

        “On the X32 because I have drums on 1-16 and some guitars on 17-32, I have to constantly switch back and forth when I want to boost or reduce volume of any given instrument. ”

        If you aren’t using 16 mics for drums, you can change the channel source on unused channels in that fader bank to get your guitars on that same page.

        You can assign any input to any channel on the X32. I frequently will have a show that only has 12-14 inputs, and then I assign a talkback mic and a stereo aux input on the remaining channels in that fader bank, allowing me to not switch layers.

        There are 3 banks of user buttons and knobs on the board.

        When you say custom layouts, do you mean mixing DCA’s, Mix buses, and Inputs on a fader bank like an you can on an Allen and Heath?

  • Davinder

    Which Mixer i buy Midas M32 or Presouns Serise 3 ?
    Which is best for live concert??

    • Lyndon Dueck

      PreSonus Series 3 by far.

  • Peter Kamau

    Is there a maximum number of AVB network inputs that can be sent from studioLive24 Mixer to StudioLive 24R? At the moment am only able to send channels 1-8 from the Mixer to the rack…..

    • Lyndon Dueck

      Your routing must be wrong. You have to make sure to properly assign the routing in the network settings.

  • peter

    Hey am only getting Channel 1-8 on Monitor Mixer & Stand Alone Mode on my STUDIOLIVE32R through AVB/Network from STUDIOLIVE24 III Mixer…. i cant go past channel 9…i have tried everything to no avail. Is there anything am doing wrong, am controlling the StudioLiveIII Rack through UC….. i have checked on the patching and all seems okay. what might be the issue?

  • Meindert van belle

    What about SMAART ???It seems nobody knows or uses this feature of presonus. I didnt used it either, but when i got the special mic fot the job, i did. The impovement was huge! And we didnt had a crappy foh. This feature is soooo important to me now: there is literally no point in using any eq if you dont get the room out of the Eqeation. Even for untrained ears, the difference shockingly big. So wont buy a new mixer without this funtion or similar. What does behringer/midas/a&h/etc have as an alternative?

  • Meindert van Belle

    What about SMAaRt?
    This is imo one of the most underestimated tool! Does other digital mixers have this or similar tools?To me, that would be a deal Breaker. When I started to work with smaart, the sound became way better. When I enter en new venue, or change the setup, I insist on having some time to get this done. Like presonus said: get the room out of the eqeation.

    • Lyndon Dueck

      PreSonus’ UC Surface App has SMAART built in. You use the App in conjunction with the sound board to accomplish the SMAART capabilities.

  • Cristian Andrei

    Hello! @Lyndon Dueck do you know what are the main differences between the model Presonus StudioLive 16 Series III and the new model Presonus StudioLive 32SC? The only downgrade I noticed are the small displays above the potentiometers, the upper ones on the left side, which are missing from the new model. Do you know of any other major firewall differences?thank you in advance!

    • Lyndon Dueck

      Hey Cristian, sorry for the late reply, I must admit I’ve been too busy to check comments here.

      I haven’t had a huge change to take a look but from what I hear they made significant updates to the sound processor and some other QOL improvements.

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