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Mackie Designs, Inc. was founded in Woodinville, Washington by Greg Mackie, an ex-Boeing worker who began making pro audio gear and guitar amps in his spare time. After founding the small line mixer manufacturer TAPCO, and later the home audio processor manufacturer AudioControl, he founded Mackie Designs, Inc., designing and manufacturing affordable and versatile compact pro audio mixers.

The mixers were a tremendous success, forcing them to relocate and expand manufacturing every year in its early years to eventually occupy a 30,000 square-foot factory in 1994 and further expanding to a 90,000 square-foot (2,787 square meter) factory the following year. The company took advantage of the Seattle area’s plentiful electronic and engineering subcontractors and utilised automated assembly machines to achieve high productivity and quality with lower overall production costs. They were the originator of the Ultra-mix Universal Automation System for 8-bus consoles.

By 1996, Mackie was diversifying, adding veteran industry designer Cal Perkins to the team and diversifying into power amps, powered mixers, and active studio monitors