SM26S Splitter Mixer

SM 26S Front

SM 26S Rear


  • 6 Balanced Mono Inputs, 6 Balanced Mono Outputs
  • 2 Main Balanced Inputs, 2 Main Balanced Outputs
  • 6 Input Level Controls and 6 Mix/Pan Controls
  • Master Input and Output Level Controls
  • 10 dBV to +4 dBu Shifter
  • +4 dBu to –10 dBV Shifter
  • Internal Universal Power Supply (100-230 VAC)


  • 6 Mono Inputs, Stereo Output Line Mixer
  • 4 Stereo Inputs, Stereo Output Line Mixer
  • Stereo Input, 6 Mono Output Line Splitter
  • 1 Stereo Input, 4 Stereo Output Splitter
  • 6-In, 6-Out Booster Amplifier
  • Configurable to 8 Outputs

SM26S Splitter Mixer


The Rane Model SM26S Splitter Mixer is one of the most useful, yet unusual audio products available.

In its most basic configuration, it is a six-to-two line level mixer. It will accept six balanced or unbalanced line level inputs which are applied to six Level and Pan controls. An additional stereo Master Input allows a total of eight inputs. The result of the mix is sent to an overall Master Output Level control and appears at the Left and Right Outputs on the rear.

In its splitter mode, the SM26S can take one or two line level inputs and split these to any of the six Mono Outputs on the rear. The Mix/Pan controls in this mode control the level from each of the two input buses to be applied to each Output. Internal header blocks allow the Mix Outputs to become an independent stereo out, allowing a total of eight outputs.

The SM26S may also be used as a six input, six output buffer amplifier in which case signal applied to Input 1 is delivered to Output 1, and so on.

The SM26S may also be used in a combination of modes at once. For instance, Inputs 1 through 3 may be mixed to the left and/or right output buses while at the same time Outputs 4 and 5 are delivering signal originally applied to the Left and Right Master Inputs while at the same time Output 6 is being driven from Input 6 in the straight through mode.

The front of the SM26S comprises a Master Input Level control, six Channel Level controls, six Mix/Pan controls and a Master Output Level control. The rear of the SM26S provides two Master Left and Right Inputs, six Mono Inputs, six Mono Outputs and two Master Left and Right Mix Outputs. All Inputs and Outputs on the SM26S are 1/4" TRS active balanced.

The SM26S replaced the SM 26B with a new internal universal power supply, eliminating the external supply requirement. All other features remain the same.


Block Diagram (click to enlarge)

SM 26S Block Diagram

SM26S Applications

SM26S Swiss Army Mixer

Aptly nicknamed the “Swiss Army Mixer”, the SM26S is an extremely versatile single rack-space tool providing a number of different functions to solve a broad spectrum of line-level signal routing problems. Whether the need is for line mixing, line distribution or line matching/amplification, the SM26S easily performs these tasks, along with additional features for even more flexibility.

One of the most popular uses is line-level mixing for keyboards, drum machines, and effects. Expanding existing console limitations is simple. Whenever a mono or stereo sub-mix is desired, the SM26S comes to the rescue. Up to three stereo, or six mono sources easily mix together, with panning ability on every input. Many musical instrument performers find the SM26S indispensable for combining various effects and expanding the available loops on their signal processors. Here's an example of a 576-channel music mixing system using daisy-chained SM26 and SM82 Mixers.

The SM26S capabilities also include a wide variety of functions such as live recording splitting, -10 dBV to +4 dBm level matching, intercom splitting, line boosting, hotel and club zone management, restaurant paging systems, adding additional monitor buses for studio or stage use, and many more custom applications.

The SM26S provides full expansion capabilities for all applications. Simple 1/4" TRS connectors allow expansion using patch cords. Using these provisions, an unlimited number of lines may be mixed or split upon demand. For example, three units create either an 18 input mixer or an 18 output splitter, or a combination of both.

The question arises regarding mic levels. Since the SM26S operates only at line levels, microphone applications require separate boosting before connection. Rane offers a mic stage model MS 1S ideally suited to this application. The MS 1S is a single channel mic preamplifier with a true differential input and balanced output. This provides the ability to locate the mic preamp close to the mic’s location and run a line signal to the SM26S. For installations requiring rack-mounting, the ML 1 provides two mic preamplifiers.

SM26S Specifications

Parameter Specification Limit Conditions/Comments
Inputs: Type     Active Balanced
.....Connectors 1/4 TRS   Tip=(+), Ring=(), Sleeve=GND
.....Impedance 20k Ω 1%  
.....Max. Level 22 dBu 1  
Outputs: Type 1/4" TRS   Active Balanced
.....Impedance 125 Ω typ 1 kHz
.....Max. Level 26 dBu 1 10 kΩ or greater
Gain Range Off to +12 dB   -0/+6 dB, any Input to any Output
RFI Filters Yes 5%  
Freq. Response 10-40 kHz   +0/-3 dB
THD+Noise 0.008% .002 +4 dBu, 20-20 kHz unity gain
IM Distortion (SMPTE) 0.009% .002 60 Hz /7 kHz, 4:1, +4 dBu unity gain
S / N Ratio     re +4 dBu, 20 kHz noise bandwidth
  120 dB 2 Mono Outputs, unity gain
  98 dB 2 Mix Outputs, unity gain
.....L to R Panning 60 (1 kHz) dB 2 Any Input to Mix Outs
.....Channel to Channel 75 (1 kHz) dB 2 Any Input to Mix Outs
Mean Time Between Failure 35,500 hours   Mil-Hdbk-217D, Section V
Unit: Power 7 W max  
.....Line Voltage 100-240 VAC 10% 50/60 Hz
.....Agency UL/cUL/CE    
.....Construction All Steel   19" 1U rackmount
.....Size 1.75" H x 19" W x 5.3" D (4.4 cm x 48.3 cm x 13.5 cm)
.....Weight 5 lb   (2.3 kg)
Shipping: Size 4.25" x 20.3" x 13.75" (11 cm x 52 cm x 35 cm)
.....Weight 9 lb   (4.1 kg)

Note: Unity Gain = Master Levels set to ~ "7" position

Note: 0 dBu=0.775 Vrms

SM26S Literature

Each unit is shipped with a booklet containing the manual with Safety and Compliance, Data Sheet, Schematic, Declaration of Conformity, and Rane's 2+ Year Warranty information.

SM26S Support

I read that the SM26S can be a 2 x 4 distribution ampliifer, but the Mix Ouputs are summing all the inputs. What is wrong?

If an SM26S needs to have an additional set of independent outputs, as in a 2x4 stereo distribution amplifier (see Swiss Army Mixer, Figure 10), the LEFT and RIGHT MIX OUTPUTS can be used in addition to the 6 MONO OUTS. Normally, the LEFT and RIGHT MIX OUTPUTS produce the sum mix of all 6 LEVEL and PAN controls. To break any channel away from the Mix Output bus, internal jumpers have been provided. These are located behind the MIX/PAN controls for each channel. J3 connects MONO OUT 1 to the mix bus. J6 connects MONO OUT 2, J9 connects MONO OUT 3, and so on — see the board layout in the manual. WARNING: Remove the top cover only after the power is off! Don't attempt this If you aren't qualified to service the unit.

Are the inputs and outputs balanced?

On both the SM 26, 26B and the current 26S all inputs are fully balanced. The first model SM 26 has only balanced inputs, the outputs are single-ended (some say quasi-balanced) with an ungrounded "floating" sleeve connection. For typical applications this is not a limitation, just a consideration for wiring and RF rejection. The SM 26B has been in continuous production since 1994, replacing the SM 26. The "S" version has a new internal universal power supply, operating from 100-240 VAC (true for all Rane "S" models).

When I split and mix simultaneously there is phase cancellation at the MIX OUTPUTS, what's wrong?

Due to the summing node being inverting there is a combination of hookups which will produce phase cancellation due to signal inversion. Remove the internal jumpers (six total) to rectify this situation. Only SM 26B and SM26S units have these jumpers, they were not part of the original SM 26 design.

If the above options don't answer your question, or it's urgent...
Phone 425-355-6000, 8:30 AM to 5 PM PST, Monday through Friday.
If it's less urgent, you can email the factory.
For local service within the USA, find a service center.

Rack Mixers

AM1 Automixer, 4 Mic / Line In, 2 Aux In, USB Audio I/O, Headphone Amp, Cascadable, RAD Port 1 XLR XLR, USB,
RCA RCA, 3.5 mm, RJ-45
AM2 Automixer, 8 Mic / Line In, Cascadable, RAD Port 1 XLR XLR, RJ-45
MLM42S Mixer, 4 Mic / Line In, EQ, Effects Loop, 2 Out 1 XLR XLR,
1/4" 1/4" TRS,
1/4" 1/4" TS
MLM 65 Mixer, 6 Mic / Line In, 6 Stereo Line In, USB Audio I/O 3 XLR XLR,
MLM82S Mixer, 4 Mic / Line In, 4 Mono / Stereo In, 2 Out 1 XLR XLR,
1/4" 1/4" TRS
MLM103 Mixer, 6 Mic / Line In, 2 Stereo In, 3 Out 3 euro Euro
SM82S Mixer, 8 Stereo Line Inputs With Aux Sends 1 1/4" 1/4" TRS,
1/4" 1/4" TS

The MS1S adds a small and simple mic preamp to the SM26S.

The ML 1 adds a pair of mic preamps or digital outputs to the SM26S in a rackmount unit.