Recommend me an interface!

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austin
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Recommend me an interface!

Post by austin » Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:17 pm

Hey folks — been a while. Things look a little different around here!

So I'm finally upgrading the ancient system on which I'd been running PT6 (yep) for years and years, in my little project studio. Brand new Macbook Pro coming, on which I'm making the switch to Logic. Can you recommend a new interface that will:
  • take advantage of my new Thunderbolt connection
  • have decent enough built-in pres, but also the ability to bypass them when I want
  • have 4 channels, probably
  • cost not much more than $500?
It's been such a long time since I've been in the market for audio gear that it feels like an entirely new world. Help me, TOMB!

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calaverasgrandes
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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by calaverasgrandes » Fri Mar 23, 2018 6:20 am

I did a similar thing recently.
For me it came down to the Universal Audio Apollo 8 vs the Antelope Orion Studio Rev 2017.
They both come with some hardware based effects.
They both have very, very good audio performance and AD/DA converters.
The Antelope stuff seems to be more cutting edge in terms of clocking and digital conversion.
I however went with Universal Audio based on the drivers, software and the plugins I already owned for a DSP unit of theirs.
The Antelope stuff has better features, just a look at the back panel is all you need to know that!
But I do not like the stories I read on various message boards about the firmware updates and such.

I would caveat emptor the Apollo 16. Those Dante jacks on the back are a joke. They do not allow you to connect to anything else. They are vestigial from the previous iteration of that model, when they would have been used to create a virtual stack of 2 or more Apollo 16 units.
I almost fell for that one, thinking I'd add on a Focusrite or SSL Dante AD box later!

I will say that I am pretty much head over heels in love with the sound of the Apollo 8. The noisefloor is amazing. The sound is smooth, clean and clear.
??????? wrote: "everything sounds best right before it blows up."

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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by vvv » Sat Mar 24, 2018 12:24 pm

Seeing this and the other thread, have you compared the Apollo desktop to the 8?

Do they sound the same, or close?
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calaverasgrandes
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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by calaverasgrandes » Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:09 pm

I have not had a chance to test the Apollo Desktop and the Apollo 8.
Honestly I was tempted to just get the little desktop guy and use an ADAT optical cable to add 8 more inputs. But in the end I decided to do a 'play as you pay thing' with Sweetwater and get the rackmount sucker.
Now that I have had it for a while I wish that I'd spent a little more for the Quad or Octo version. The unison preamps are very addictive. They also use up all of your onboard DSP, and the external DSP boxes can't do anything to help a unison preamp. You are set with whatever amount of DSP you bought in the store. (Kind of like ram on Macs!).
Still, I am very happy with this setup. So much so I have mostly just been rocking out through the UAD virtual console. Playing guitar, bass or keys into virtual amps with drum machines and stuff.
??????? wrote: "everything sounds best right before it blows up."

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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by Recycled_Brains » Mon Apr 02, 2018 8:38 am

The Apollo is cool. I use an older (silver) Apollo 16 and a Twin.

I like them. Def. go octo if you go that route. I assumed quad would be plenty. It's not.

I really hate the Console app that you have to use with it, but it's not a deal breaker.
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mrc
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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by mrc » Tue Apr 03, 2018 11:57 am

I use an original Twin Duo desktop unit, and love it! I have other UAD cards for mix processing. For live, or bands, I use a Rme Raydat card and 3 x 8 channel boxes.

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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by austin » Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:45 pm

Thanks for the replies, everyone. Anyone have experience with less-expensive options? The only thing I'm finding that checks all my boxes (Thunderbolt, 4 channels, $500-700 range) is the Focusrite Clarett 4pre — any experiences for/against?

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Nick Sevilla
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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by Nick Sevilla » Thu Apr 12, 2018 5:18 pm

austin wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:45 pm
Thanks for the replies, everyone. Anyone have experience with less-expensive options? The only thing I'm finding that checks all my boxes (Thunderbolt, 4 channels, $500-700 range) is the Focusrite Clarett 4pre — any experiences for/against?
I have always had a good experience with any Focusrite units I have owned and used.
I recommend you try this one. Let me know how it goes.
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comfortstarr
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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by comfortstarr » Fri Apr 13, 2018 2:18 pm

If I were buying one today I'd take a long hard look at the Audient stuff:

https://audient.com/products/

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A.David.MacKinnon
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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by A.David.MacKinnon » Sat Apr 14, 2018 7:02 pm

Hey all. Not wanting to hijack this thread but I'm in the same boat. I'm doing more and more location/live recording and my ancient laptop-digi002 rig is close to death. The laptop can't even run on battery anymore. Every time I'm on a gig I find myself mumbling "please don't die, please don't die". I really, really need a new mobile set-up.
The new laptop will be a mac. Beyond that I'm a bit out of touch with my options. USB? Thunderbolt? What's my best bet? What's my best bet if I want this system to still be viable 6-10 years down the road (even if I'm muttering "please don't die")?
It needs to be decent and reliable (and by that I mean rock solid because you don't get do-overs on live gigs). 16 channels preferred. Pre-amps not necessary but will be considered. The live/mobile thing is still a sideline so I'm not looking to break the bank but happy to invest in something solid.

Recommend me an interface!!!!

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Nick Sevilla
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Re: Recommend me an interface!

Post by Nick Sevilla » Sun Apr 15, 2018 8:02 am

A.David.MacKinnon wrote:
Sat Apr 14, 2018 7:02 pm
Recommend me an interface!!!!
Focusrite RedNet. They have a lot of different options, including a 16 channel line input one (RedNet2, which I have).

So far they have been rock solid in the months I have had these units. You can use ethernet into your laptop, so no need for their PCIe card.

Not cheap, but hey, you get what you pay for.

Cheers
Realizing vibratory excursions from a paper widget.

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