The BEACN Mix Sound Controller — a basic hardware mixer which provides convenient control over up to four audio inputs/outputs on a connected PC — showed up in August 2021 to critical streamer and podcaster acclaim alongside its slightly bigger, yet far more advanced sibling, the BEACN Mix Create. MMORPG’s Joseph Bradford noted its ease of use and great-feeling controls, though it’s broadly disagreed upon whether or not the baseline BEACN Mix controller is worth its $149 MSRP when placed so close to the Mix Create (which has a $199 MSRP). Meanwhile, both controllers compete against the Elgato Stream Deck ($199.99) in both functionality and price, albeit with a few key design differences; potentially making the BEACN Mix the better choice for regular use.
And now, for those who’ve remained on the fence about buying one or the other, the tables are turning. Drop is currently offering the BEACN Mix Sound Controller at a 33.5% markdown ($99, down from $149). Of course, there’s also the far more comprehensive Razer Stream Controller, but its $269.99 MSRP pushes it outside of the same ballpark while its $149.99 macro-only counterpart, the Razer Stream Controller X, is in a category of its own. For the limited time this offer is active, the BEACN Mix is one of the best — if not the best — dedicated streaming audio mixers you can buy, and its major design advantages over the premium-priced Elgato Stream Deck are significant where accessibility is concerned.
BEACN’s design features two colorways: Dark Blue and White, and they’re both attractive yet functional thanks to the mixer’s four large (and evidently, quite comfortable) knobs and 5-inch full-color display. These are a departure from the Elgato Stream Deck’s much tinier display, function buttons, and knobs, and that’s all possible due to its larger dimensions. Comparing the two side-by-side, the BEACN Mix Sound Controller measures in at 7.4 x 14.3 x 14.2 inches, whereas the Stream Deck is 4.6 x 3.3 x 0.8 inches. Despite the BEACN’s added comfort making it a shoo-in for someone who needs a bigger display and bigger controls, that size difference may be worth considering when determining whether your desk has enough space to fit it.
Still, it’s a plug-and-play mixer with plenty of portability, using USB-C to connect to the streaming PC via a single connection. Once that’s set up, the software seems equally easy to get rolling. Critics are less in love with the mixer’s lack of sophisticated features, however. For example, it lacks the ability to create and control submixes of similar audio signals. That’s not too important when you need something simple in a pinch, and the BEACN Mix is just that — a simple, yet durable and easy-to-configure solution for podcasting and streaming with limited space resources. If that’s you, you’ll want to grab it at its current price before the deal ends, though it’s unclear when that’ll be. Drop’s estimated ship date is December 29, 2023.