starting my 1st rack. Tight budget so starting small. One question I do have though is whether I need a dedicated output straight away? I like the idea of the Rosie for the send and return feature which I guess would work well with the pico dsp or other fx. or could I get away with using the Alm Hpo?
any advice welcome.

Neither. If budget is a concern and you want maximum function, AUX send/returns, and an output, check out Ladik's M-175 mixer and M-053 AUX Mixer. With these, you get it all in 20 hp, for $147-ish + shipping. This gives you three mono AUX sends, four pannable mono mixer channels, plus two more stereo mixer channels suitable for AUX returns. And the mixer has dual 1/4" TRS outputs with a master level control. For this sort of thing on a budget, it doesn't get much better.

Great. thanks for the comment.
Wow really cool. mixer and outs for 1/2 the price of the rosie!

check this


mixer with sends and mutes, cheap and just 6hp