As some of you know, for the last 6 months or so I’ve been playing with the Presonus StudioLive 16.0.2 mixer in my home studio. Being a long-time fan and user of Presonus gear, I was thrilled to get to put this thing through its paces.

I’ve done everything from recording a live concert, to mobile tracking sessions, to recording podcasts, videos, and live streaming video/audio online.

So yes…I’ve put it through its paces. I absolutely love this thing. Having a physical mixer with all the benefits of a firewire audio interface is the bomb.

Check out this quick video where I share with you three of my favorite things about the StudioLive, and why it’s a great option for us home studio folks.

  • Rena-Marie Villano

    Hi Joe,

    Would you mind explaining how you used your 16.0.2 in a live-streaming capacity? I have the Livestream Studio 3 software on a PC.

  • sam

    Hey I am getting this board in the mail soon. I have TONS of outboard gear and nice mics, is it necessary to get a separate dedicated interface or will the built in components of the board work?

    • Absolutely use it as an interface. That’s the whole point!

  • Mark Boucher

    Hi Kali, thanks for the info…sounds fun. I use the Mackie MCU Prom system and love it…I added the extension and now have 16 tracks on the board. Kee p on recording….Mark

  • can the 16.0.2 be linked with another to create a 24ch console

    • Don’t think so. check the manual though

    • Daniel

      Yes, via daisy chaining with the 2nd firewire connection.

  • Jeryzkyd

    Thanks, I just picked one up and have been having second thoughts, you’ve convinced me..

  • Ken Florence

    Also I know your a busy man but a more thorough review as far as studio use with this board would be very well appreciated. Thanks and God Bless!

  • Ken Florence

    How is the studiolive 16.0.2 as an audio interface? Is there an fairly wide stereo image you get from it? And, how are the convertors?

    • Converters, etc. are great. It’s as good as any other interface you’ll get.

  • Joseph CH

    Do you use a patchbay or a snake for recording a small band rehearsal or live event with the 16.0.2.? I have my POD taking channels 13/14 direct but would like to plug in a bass player, 2nd guitar, vocal mic and a small drum kit. I think I can use just a patchbay to accomplish this. I am tired of having to turn my 16.0.2 around to plug someone in direct. Thanks in advance for taking the time to answer!

    • I just plug right into the mixer. But yeah if you don’t want to plug into the back a patchbay is what you need.

  • troy

    thinking about getting Propellerhead Reason (aka Record). Is it easy to use Studio Live as a mixer/hardware interface for Reason??

    • I would assume so, but I don’t use Reason.

  • Michal

    This will probably sound like a stupid question, but… having ProTool 9 or 10, can I use this mixer as my only interface or do I still need to have some other IO interface to run this mixer through? I am not quite clear how this mixer integrates with ProTools. I am currently using MBox2 and I was thinking about getting Command8 (so I don’t have to do everything with my mouse). I’d love to upgrade my gear, but looking for the best option now. I’d appreciate your advise, Joe. Thanks!

    • Hey Michal,

      As long as you have PT 9 or later, you can ditch the Mbox and use the Studio Live (or any other interface) as your main audio interface for PT. You’ll still need to have an iLok connected for PT to run, but you won’t need the Mbox.

      • Michal

        Awesome – thanks Joe!

  • Hi Joe. Nice review. I’m considering to trade my soundcraft mfx (live) and my tc studio konnekt 48 for this little studiolive. It seems to be the ideal piece of gear to use both live and in the studio..
    About the monitoring I suppose you do need a headphone amp? (rack or individual) or the aux are “amplified”?
    Just one more think. I love your website but it’s great to actually SEE you talking to us 🙂
    Don’t misunderstand me, I love your writing but having the visual is a real “plus”.
    Thank you for sharing

    Bruno from belgium

  • Matt Howard

    so, for a live-recording through this board, would you use this board for your main mixer? cause doesn’t it NOT have monitor/aux outputs? i feel that would be kind of a big setback.. am i wrong?

    • Rick Naqvi

      There are 4 aux outputs on the 1602. If you need more than that, the bigger brother 1642 has 6 auxes and the super big brother, 2442 has 10 auxes.

  • Eli Schweyer

    Thanks this is awesome. I just have one question: Our church would like to get this soundboard and use it for recording services. How much RAM/”computer power” would I need to be able to even record 10-15 simultaneous tracks smoothly? I have only 3gb now and thats fine with my firewire 410 (2 simultaneous) but…..

    • I would imagine that’s fine, but the only way to find out is to try it.

  • Rodrigo Gimeno

    Hey Joe!

    Have you thought about making “home studio tour III”? maybe I’m wrong, but seems like you’ve changed some things a bit since last time. Greetings from Spain buddy, you’re awesome!

    • New tour is definitely coming. Just finishing up a few things…. 🙂

  • Marcus

    And it also has a dedicated talkback input AND talk button. GOD how I LOVE that.

    I can’t believe my 003 doesn’t have this.

    • Bobby Simons

      I think the most recent version of Pro Tools is the last to offer support for the Digi 002/003 line. The future of the 003 is questionable

  • Robin McGillveray

    How would you compare this to the Onyx 1640i (or maybe the 1620i)? That’s what I have been looking at while thinking about putting a home studio together. Other than the fact that the Presonus has some built-in effects, I am not that clear on what the differences are. (I don’t know much about recording yet.) I would be most interested to hear your thoughts.

  • Romulo Petarli

    Hi, Joe. What about the 003? You’re not using it for anything anymore? Is there anything in which the 003 beats the StudioLive? I’m thinking about upgrading my interface, so this would be valuable information. Thanks.

    • Bobby Simons

      I think the most recent version of Pro Tools is the last to offer support for the Digi 002/003 line. I’m quite happy with my 003, but i too am curious about how the 003 compares to the 1602. The future of the 003 is questionable

      • There’s really not much to compare between the two. The 003 is a control surface with 4 preamps and no built-in effects. The StudioLive is actually a digital mixer with 12 mic inputs and onboard effects. Can’t really compare them apples to apples. I like the preamps on the Presonus better than the 003, if that helps.

  • MF

    So how are these PreSonus boards, I am looking for something to record live, as I have an automated Tascam DM4800 for the studio, it is heavy so I need something small and compact and still get a quality sound for recording live gigs. Any other recommendations besides the PreSonus?

  • ray

    Vey nice Joe.Check also Focusrite Control 2802 .

  • Joe, thanks so much for this! We’re lucky to have you in our corner. Best to you.

  • Bobby Simons

    So Joe, why exactly did u dump your Digi 003? Curious how this compares…. Maybe its portability for live gigs is a bit more in Presonus favor? Other reasons?

  • Joe,
    I was looking at this mixer a few months ago as well. One thing that I wasn’t crazy about was the length of the faders. I have a Mackie Control and it has a nice long throw, the faders on this unit almost feel like “my first fader” faders:) The whole unit, although incredible technology, sort of felt like a toy from a build quality standpoint. I know you are enjoying the unit, but do you know where I am coming from?

    • FYI… Joe, you are the man! I truly enjoy the podcasts, the videos and your heart. I grow through every lesson!
      Thanks for all you do,

  • We have a 16 and a 24, and getting ready to buy another 24. They are INCREDIBLE….We record on a weekly basis with Presonus’ Capture software, and then dump the tracks into Pro Tools 9.

    Oh yeah…and mixing your own in ear personal mix from an iPad is something I used to only dream of….now it’s made me a spoiled little brat.

  • Dude…totally agree with your assessment of the Studiolive mixers.

    I’m running the Studiolive as well, though I mainly use Studio One (version 2 really…REALLY made this a phenomenal DAW).

    The Studiolive is a truly flexible and extremely useful tool for any home recording/home studio setup at a better than excellent price.

    I love the thing. And I’m loving Studio One the more I use it.

  • Koen

    Are you still using protools ’cause I guess it isn’t compatible with the mixer or is it?

    • Pro Tools 9 and 10 are compatible with any audio interface. I’m also using Studio One from Presonus, which is pretty awesome.

  • Xan

    Sounds like a great mixer Joe.

    So for recording you essentially use it as a 12 channel sound card but with direct monitoring so you don’t have the latency, correct?

    But how do you make use ov it when you are mixing down?

    • Correct. When mixing down I just run my stereo mix through it, but you CAN run 16 channels out of your DAW into the 16 channels on the board if you want to.

  • Eli Schweyer

    I’m so glad you made this video! I’ve been drooling over the Studio Live’s for a while now (for use at home and church) and I was hoping they lived up to my expectations. Now I really want one! I’m still curious to hear a live recording that was done with one of these…

  • hopefully I’ll upgrade to something like this eventually. thanks for the review (: