The LEGENDARY Gemini PS-626-X mixer is finally back by popular demand with a better Fader and more Goodies!!!
Gemini PS-626X Review
Review by: DJ BLAZE (firstname.lastname@example.org)
First of all, I would like to thank the good people over at Gemini for lending me this review unit in superman like speeds! The Gemini PS-626-X is a three channel mixer for the budget minded DJ who wants decent performance at a great price. When I first heard that Gemini was bringing back the classic PS-626 with a few improvements I was very excited to say the least. The original 626 is a mixer that I actually grew up with and kept in perfect working and physical condition for a 5 year period! Sure I had to buy about 10 Gemini Scratch faders and send it back to Gemini (all Gemini gear has a 3yr defect warranty) two times throughout this 5 year time period; but when it worked, it definitely got the job done…
On to the new Gemini PS-626-X. When I first opened the box and looked at the build quality of the new mixer I was very satisfied with the build quality and sturdiness of the unit. It definitely feels like this one can last another 5 years easily. Then about one minute after examining the mixer; my satisfaction slowly faded into sorrow. The first insufficiency I noticed that the mixer only has RCA inputs and outputs. This tells me that Gemini didn’t put the ¼” outputs on the unit either just to save money or they simply totally overlooked those of us who like using superior sound cables (like myself). The second problem I saw upon further inspection was that even though this is a three-channel mixer; you can’t use three analog turntables at the same time!!! This is another huge surprise for me since many people would think that a three channel mixer would definitely have the ability to allow a DJ to use three analog decks at a time. The final nail in the coffin for my initial inspection has to do with the Heart of the entire mixer; the Faders. The fader knobs are the biggest and blockiest I have ever used; making it much harder to do any fancy scratching finger-work without getting used to it first; and then again it is still really awkward. The line faders and crossfader also share a single panel which means if you have to change a fader (as you probably will at least once or twice if you actually use the thing); you will have to take all three faders off at once.
Moving on to the very front of the mixer there is the ¼” headphone input. On the top face of the mixer, there is the three Line faders and the Crossfader. The three line faders are extremely stiff and the knobs are just way too bulky as stated above. There is no way that you would be able to pull off any type of skilled scratching with the line faders, as there is no curve adjustment or reverse function for these faders and they are just too stiff for quick movements. The Crossfader is a little better than the line faders because it is definitely smoother but it still has the the dreadful knob. The Crossfader has a curve adjustment switch that can either be set to full fade or to sharper fade. The Sharpest setting on the Crossfader Curve control switch still has a significant amount of fade; making the adjustment pretty much useless for true scratch fanatics. You absolutely won’t be able to pull off any crabs or accurate sharp cuts at all with this mixer. So if you are a serious scratch artist…this mixer definitely isn’t for you. Right next to the Crossfader adjustment switch; there is the Crossfader Reverse switch which does its job.
Above the faders you have the Line respective Three-Band EQ (Low, Mid, and High) adjustments. There is also a Gain control knob for each line. The quality of the knobs is average but by no means cheap. On the top right of the mixer; you have the cue (headphone/monitoring) section with Cue volume adjustment, a Cue/PGM knob (so you can play what you hear in the headphones mixed with what is playing out loud), and Master Volume knob as well. Above this section, there is an LED VU display which shows Right and Left audio levels which actually has a cool feature in which it can display either CUE or MASTER audio levels selected with a switch under the LED’s.
On the Left side of the face of the mixer; there is MIC Volume and a two-band EQ (Low and High) for the microphone input which is located in the back of the mixer.
The one thing that makes this mixer pretty useful is the fact that you can have up to eight different units plugged into this mixer at a time. There are two Phono inputs and six Line inputs in total for this unit. I am extremely disappointed that there is not three Phono inputs on a three channel mixer. You should definitely be able to play three analog decks at one time on a three channel mixer. You can, however, play three sound sources at one time. The fader will fade Line one and Line two. Line three will be the source that is always on or playing. The rear of the mixer also has a Master Output (RCA only), Record Output (RCA only), Microphone Input (1/4”), and a grounding post for your analog Phono decks.
In Conclusion, there isn’t much more I can say about this mixer. It does some things OK, but most things aren't up to par with what most DJ's come to expect. I was so excited when I first heard that they were doing a re-make of my old PS-626 Gemini mixer, but I didn’t know they would just re-manufacture the same exact mixer from the 90’s. This mixer clearly shows its old age. When the original PS-626 mixer came out, it wasn’t the best, but it was definitely very useful back then and held its own for the price. If you are in the market to purchase a mixer for exactly $99 or below; then this is probably a top choice for you. I regret that I cannot recommend this mixer to anyone else besides a true beginner with only $99 to spend on a mixer. There are just so many other options that would blow this mixer out of the water (American Audio QD5…just to name one), for about $50-100 more. If Gemini would go back to producing high-quality mixers like the UMX series (the greatest Gemini Mixers ever made) then they would be a serious contender in the mixer/scratch mixer market; but until they do; the review scores will be low...