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Lynx Aurora 16 vs Apogee Symphony Digital Converters
Old 1st January 2011
  #1
Lynx Aurora 16 vs Apogee Symphony

How do they compare? I have the Lynx Aurora 16 , and I am Looking for a new 16 DA .... for my summing.

also would be nice to know how the AD and DA compare between the Lynx and Apogee.
Old 1st January 2011
  #2
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sventvkg's Avatar
 

The D/A in the Lynx isn't good enough?
Old 1st January 2011
  #3
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BradLyons's Avatar
 

I can't say that one is better over the other as they are quite different. With the Lynx you're getting more clarity, little to no coloration. With the Apogee, you're getting some analog coloration via their analog-sounding filters....again, different animals.
Old 2nd January 2011
  #4
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Can you be more specific about this coloration? What frequencies to you feel the Apogee's are pushing that you find them not faithful to the source, or at least less faithful than the Lynx?

And if the Lynx analog filters sound less analog than the Apogee what would you say they sound more like?
Old 2nd January 2011
  #5
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If I had the Lynx, I wouldn't bother upgrading. I'd spend money on something else.

That's just me though.
Old 2nd January 2011
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by sventvkg View Post
The D/A in the Lynx isn't good enough?
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayvo86 View Post
If I had the Lynx, I wouldn't bother upgrading. I'd spend money on something else.

That's just me though.
I am not gonna upgrade...I am happy with Lynx but

I just need another 16 Ch of DA for summing so then I can use the Lynx to Insert my HW gear.
So I am think ..another Aurora 16 or a Symphony with a card of 16 Ch of DA.
Old 2nd January 2011
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kats View Post
Can you be more specific about this coloration? What frequencies to you feel the Apogee's are pushing that you find them not faithful to the source, or at least less faithful than the Lynx?

And if the Lynx analog filters sound less analog than the Apogee what would you say they sound more like?
It's not a frequency thing really---it's a "sound". If you think back to the digital Sony Dash recorders, they weren't really that appealing sonically---that was until Apogee provided their own filters. This isn't the kind of coloration that you'd expect out of say out of a Neve pre, it's not that drastic. But what you have is a slightly warmer bottom end, you actually get some punch----highs that are more rounded, smoother, etc. It's not for everyone, I personally love it---I like that kind of sound. This is the direction AVID chose to follow with their new HD interfaces as well. Converters like Lynx are amazing in their own way, with no change in sound. What goes in is what goes in and what comes out is what comes out. There are many that want this kind of sound, that exactly what they are feeding or hearing is exactly what they are going to get.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AMIEL View Post
I am not gonna upgrade...I am happy with Lynx but

I just need another 16 Ch of DA for summing so then I can use the Lynx to Insert my HW gear.
So I am think ..another Aurora 16 or a Symphony with a card of 16 Ch of DA.
As much as I like Apogee, I would recommend to consider another Aurora16 so that you have the same similar sound throughout all of your channels. By having different sets of converters, you start to lose consistency.
Old 2nd January 2011
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BradLyons View Post
It's not a frequency thing really---it's a "sound". If you think back to the digital Sony Dash recorders, they weren't really that appealing sonically---that was until Apogee provided their own filters. This isn't the kind of coloration that you'd expect out of say out of a Neve pre, it's not that drastic. But what you have is a slightly warmer bottom end, you actually get some punch----highs that are more rounded, smoother, etc.
I still don't understand. It's not a frequency thing, it's a sound thing? Also, if you say the top end is slightly rounder, doesn't that mean some high frequencies are being tamed? And how do you know it isn't the Lynx adding some frequencies in the top end that makes it sound less "round".

You really got me on the bottom end though. How is that it can be warmer than the Lynx, yet punchier at the same time? Usually a punchier bottom end means tighter, prominent attack etc, and warmer is more pillowy - yet you say the Apogee is both? This is confusing for me.

Quote:
It's not for everyone, I personally love it---I like that kind of sound. This is the direction AVID chose to follow with their new HD interfaces as well.
By this do you mean that the Lynx IS for everyone, or at least in general people would be happier with the Lynx and that the Apogee (and now Avid) are more of a niche market thing? Would you go as far as to say that the Apogee adds something magical, even though it is less realistic?

Quote:
Converters like Lynx are amazing in their own way, with no change in sound. What goes in is what goes in and what comes out is what comes out.
Well that is something I totally understand. I can't imagine it any other way.



Quote:
There are many that want this kind of sound, that exactly what they are feeding or hearing is exactly what they are going to get.
You mean the Lynx does this, it's exact? How come it is half the price of Apogee, yet way more perfect?

Quote:
As much as I like Apogee, I would recommend to consider another Aurora16 so that you have the same similar sound throughout all of your channels. By having different sets of converters, you start to lose consistency.
What about using different preamps, do you recommend against this as well?
Old 2nd January 2011
  #9
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roostert's Avatar
 

If I were you, I'd audition a few more converters before you just went with either the Apogee or Lynx. Sounds like you're wanting something a little different than what you got possibly. Don't rule out the new Avid HD I/O. I've been in the middle of some comparisons over the holidays....let's just say I was surprised....a lot. I'm gonna write up a review soon and post it. But, for now, audition, use your ears, go with what feels and sounds best to you. Everyone feels and hears a little different.
Old 2nd January 2011
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kats View Post
I still don't understand. It's not a frequency thing, it's a sound thing? Also, if you say the top end is slightly rounder, doesn't that mean some high frequencies are being tamed? And how do you know it isn't the Lynx adding some frequencies in the top end that makes it sound less "round".

You really got me on the bottom end though. How is that it can be warmer than the Lynx, yet punchier at the same time? Usually a punchier bottom end means tighter, prominent attack etc, and warmer is more pillowy - yet you say the Apogee is both? This is confusing for me.



By this do you mean that the Lynx IS for everyone, or at least in general people would be happier with the Lynx and that the Apogee (and now Avid) are more of a niche market thing? Would you go as far as to say that the Apogee adds something magical, even though it is less realistic?



Well that is something I totally understand. I can't imagine it any other way.





You mean the Lynx does this, it's exact? How come it is half the price of Apogee, yet way more perfect?



What about using different preamps, do you recommend against this as well?
To sum it up---it's all a personal taste. The Apogee has a sound, a character----the Lynx does not have a sound, it's just there.
Old 2nd January 2011
  #11
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s.d.finley's Avatar
Lynx Aurora 16 vs Apogee Symphony

I agree with Brad. Get another Lynx Aurora 16. I wouldn't like to insert on the apogee and have my mix hit the lynx to summing. You color the sound going thru the apogee, for better or worse. Also sending tracks to sum the convertors delay may be different between the two Which could cause phase issues on a multiple mic source, ie drum kit.
Old 3rd January 2011
  #12
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Running an Aurora 16 here. I chose the Aurora over Apogee for transparency. I'll get all the coloration I need with 2-bus compression, pres, mikes... For conversion, I really just want that, analog to digital conversion. Coloration for me at least, should be found else where in the chain.

But hey, if I had the money, I'd love to have both, and maybe a third, but realistically, I'm working on a variety of genres. Classical, folk, metal, rock, blues, funk, house... not sure entirely but I would imagine a Lynx would suit classical music better than an Apogee might. Just guessing here though, maybe someone else could chime in.
Old 3rd January 2011
  #13
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thermos's Avatar
I would think you would want all the same converters so that inherent converter latency would always be the same.
Old 3rd January 2011
  #14
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mixerguy's Avatar
lots of differing opinions - i'll add mine.

I have both Symphony IO and Lynx Aurora 16 at my studio

i have compared them.

the Symphony IO sounds SIGNIFICANTLY better. It also costs quite a bit more.

and... about this whole urban legend "all apogees are colored" .... well.... if any of the above posters are mentioning this concept - have any of you done a direct comparison between the Symphony IO and Lynx Aurora 16? Or are you just repeating some crap that you heard from someone, or read somewhere?



To the original poster: get both converters in your studio. Compare them. Then you decide.
Old 3rd January 2011
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mixerguy View Post
lots of differing opinions - i'll add mine.

I have both Symphony IO and Lynx Aurora 16 at my studio

i have compared them.

the Symphony IO sounds SIGNIFICANTLY better. It also costs quite a bit more.
Can you describe how they sound better? What qualities are different? I'll admit that I've never heard an Apogee and my assumptions are based on numerous people who have heard them saying they are more colored than Auroras.
Old 3rd January 2011
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BradLyons View Post
..... Converters like Lynx are amazing in their own way, with no change in sound. What goes in is what goes in and what comes out is what comes out. There are many that want this kind of sound, that exactly what they are feeding or hearing is exactly what they are going to get. ......
Ummmm..... this statement is 100% false.

You're saying that the Lynx is "perfect".... and no converter is perfect.

Old 3rd January 2011
  #17
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BradLyons's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mixerguy View Post
Ummmm..... this statement is 100% false.

You're saying that the Lynx is "perfect".... and no converter is perfect.

That's not what I'm saying at all....there is NO such thing as a perfect converter or a perfect product for that matter. What I'm saying is that the Lynx, when compared to Apogee, is a fairly CLEAN sounding converter---that what goes in is what comes out. With the Apogee, that's not the case---it does have some added warmth to it.
Old 3rd January 2011
  #18
Gear Head
 

hi there!

Need some advice here please, How do you think about this chain.. good preamps and mics, i have a rosetta ad 96...

Apogee Symphony I/O Chassis + Apogee Symphony I/O 16 Analog Out + 16 Optical In Module + Apogee Symphony PCI-Express + mac pro + pro tools le 9.. outs to an ssl X-rack 16 ch summing...


is this possible.. i mean to buy all this apogee stuff and get a decent sound? only have around 6k to invest.. on converters..

thank you very much!!
Old 4th January 2011
  #19
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BradLyons's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SCHROEDER View Post
Need some advice here please, How do you think about this chain.. good preamps and mics, i have a rosetta ad 96...

Apogee Symphony I/O Chassis + Apogee Symphony I/O 16 Analog Out + 16 Optical In Module + Apogee Symphony PCI-Express + mac pro + pro tools le 9.. outs to an ssl X-rack 16 ch summing...


is this possible.. i mean to buy all this apogee stuff and get a decent sound? only have around 6k to invest.. on converters..

thank you very much!!
What's to advise, that's some good stuff!
Old 4th January 2011
  #20
Gear Head
 

Thankzz

Thank you Mr. Brad.. I have been torturing myself wondering and reading and searching.... pt hd 2 rig or.. the best converters my budget can buy and le.. for summing.. i hope to make a good investment on this new apogee stuff.. i can´t even sleep with the excitement of reading all the reviews and comments about gear.. hehe it´s a lot of money for me... so... cheers!
Old 4th January 2011
  #21
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The Ad/DA used prices are dropping BIG time.
Old 4th January 2011
  #22
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SCHROEDER View Post
Need some advice here please, How do you think about this chain.. good preamps and mics, i have a rosetta ad 96...

Apogee Symphony I/O Chassis + Apogee Symphony I/O 16 Analog Out + 16 Optical In Module + Apogee Symphony PCI-Express + mac pro + pro tools le 9.. outs to an ssl X-rack 16 ch summing...


is this possible.. i mean to buy all this apogee stuff and get a decent sound? only have around 6k to invest.. on converters..

thank you very much!!


I think you'll have a great chain here.
Other great AD converters you'll find from Metric Halo LIO-8 or Prism for example.

My two favorite ones are Apogee and Metric Halo stuff.

You cannot go wrong with any of them, just a question of taste and your initial set-up on which you should build upon.

Absolutely, with the Apogee converters you'll have an amazing sound.
However, do not forget that there is no point investing in good converters if your mic / preamp are not topnotch as well. Even though by just getting a good pre-amp may make a difference, I believe that the whole recording chain has to be a pro chain to give you great results.

A Design stuff is amazing, Daking, and many others, but they're in the 2K - 3K range per piece.

I recently upgraded this exact chain that you're discussing here, my set up now is:

mic: bock 151
pre/amp: A Design Pacifica
tube DI: A Design REDDI
compressor/limiter: Daking Fet III
EQ: A Design Hammer
Converters: Apogee Symphony I/O + 8 Analog / 8 optical + 64 PCIe card.
Daw: Logic Pro / Pro Tools
Old 4th January 2011
  #23
Gear Head
 

Mr lulgje

thank you Mr lulgje.

My studio is really small but i think i´ve got a couple of decent instruments guit., amps, keys, pres and mics.. just 4 channels input high end.. not recording drums here... i can do that in other studio (with the right tools) and bring the session back for mixing.. i mean, i m thinking about converters and then at least a 2bus compressor on my xlogic 16 channel summing mixer.. of course using plugins too.. the thing.. to make my investment really shine on my budget hehe.. i was thinking about.. aurora + vac rac or just apogee or just shadow hills mastering compressor hahaha i want that one soon... ok i have a healthy kidney here!! thanks for the help! btw i heard only good things about the reddi congrats for your gear!

Quote:
Originally Posted by barryjohns View Post
The Ad/DA used prices are dropping BIG time.
Mr BarryJohns

So you think is better to invest on those pieces of gear? what would you do in my place sir? thank you!
Old 4th January 2011
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCHROEDER View Post
Thank you Mr. Brad.. I have been torturing myself wondering and reading and searching.... pt hd 2 rig or.. the best converters my budget can buy and le.. for summing.. i hope to make a good investment on this new apogee stuff.. i can´t even sleep with the excitement of reading all the reviews and comments about gear.. hehe it´s a lot of money for me... so... cheers!
Pro Tools HD doesn't change the game and immediately make everything sound better directly, however it does provide the tools for a hassle free mix environment and incredible sound quality when you get into digital summing and dithering. BUT, your real benefit will come from your analog front-end and back-end, which means having great converters, monitors, and of course the gear to get the best sounding recordings or mixes---such as maybe some nice analog EQ's, compressors, etc. Converters, by themselves don't make all the difference in the world, they only allow the rest of the gear to function to the level they were designed to do.
Old 4th January 2011
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BradLyons View Post
That's not what I'm saying at all....there is NO such thing as a perfect converter or a perfect product for that matter. What I'm saying is that the Lynx, when compared to Apogee, is a fairly CLEAN sounding converter---that what goes in is what comes out. With the Apogee, that's not the case---it does have some added warmth to it.
But that is EXACTLY what you said:


"Converters like Lynx are amazing in their own way, with no change in sound. What goes in is what goes in and what comes out is what comes out. There are many that want this kind of sound, that exactly what they are feeding or hearing is exactly what they are going to get."
Old 4th January 2011
  #26
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MIKEHARRIS's Avatar
Reuven...my demo Symphony is at Crescent Moon with Eric Schilling ...

When he is done with it i will loan it to you and you tell us....


Enquiring Ears wanna know
Old 4th January 2011
  #27
Ivo
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mixerguy View Post
lots of differing opinions - i'll add mine.

I have both Symphony IO and Lynx Aurora 16 at my studio

i have compared them.

the Symphony IO sounds SIGNIFICANTLY better. It also costs quite a bit more.

and... about this whole urban legend "all apogees are colored" .... well.... if any of the above posters are mentioning this concept - have any of you done a direct comparison between the Symphony IO and Lynx Aurora 16? Or are you just repeating some crap that you heard from someone, or read somewhere?

To the original poster: get both converters in your studio. Compare them. Then you decide.
+1!

Currently I'm evaluating the Symphony I/O vs. the Apogee Rosettas w. Big Ben in my studio. The Symphony I/O sounds better. Not night-and-day: high-end converter differences are generally subtle and the Rosettas sound very good - but Symphony I/O sounds better. Also, Symphony I/O does not sound colored. I'd describe the sound as fuller, cleaner, with better imaging and a very reponsive and more detailed low end.

The whole 'Apogee sounds warmer / has low midrange coloration' thing might be true for the Rosetta series. I have compared the Rosetta's with a Lynx Aurora some time ago and found indeed that the Lynx sounded cleaner, but in the same ballpark quality-wise. The Symphony I/O really is a step up from both the earlier Apogee models and the Lynx Aurora.

hth,

Ivo W.
Old 4th January 2011
  #28
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mixerguy's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by kats View Post
But that is EXACTLY what you said:


"Converters like Lynx are amazing in their own way, with no change in sound. What goes in is what goes in and what comes out is what comes out. There are many that want this kind of sound, that exactly what they are feeding or hearing is exactly what they are going to get."
Kats

thank you heh for noticing what is so obvious to me it is laughable.



Old 4th January 2011
  #29
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I have 2 DA-16x and an AD-16x. When I first got them, I did some testing....daisy chaining 16 channels of i/o together to see how bad "converter buildup" would get. I thought, because many were saying that the 16x series colored the sound, that I would here a huge difference after 16 generations. I did not. There was certainly a minor difference, but it wasn't the huge frequency buildup I expected. This is using a Tonelux console, and Focal monitoring.

I have my console set up so I can monitor before I hit the converter, or hit an insert switch on the channel and monitor after the DAW and converter. The difference is negligible.

The Apogee 16x is EXTREMELY subtle as far as coloration. Don't think using this unit is going to give you huge gains in "analogizing(???)" your sound. I find it to be a pretty straight shooter. The output is close enough to the input that I don't even think about it, and this is all I ask of a converter.

To the OP, I would suggest sticking with the same type of converter for the simple fact that the minor processing delay of the converters will be consistent, which will avoid possible phase issues when spanning groups of tracks, such as a full mic'd drum kit, or live band situation, across units.
Old 4th January 2011
  #30
Gear Head
 

Apogge + nothing or aurora + something..

Quote:
Originally Posted by BradLyons View Post
Pro Tools HD doesn't change the game and immediately make everything sound better directly, however it does provide the tools for a hassle free mix environment and incredible sound quality when you get into digital summing and dithering. BUT, your real benefit will come from your analog front-end and back-end, which means having great converters, monitors, and of course the gear to get the best sounding recordings or mixes---such as maybe some nice analog EQ's, compressors, etc. Converters, by themselves don't make all the difference in the world, they only allow the rest of the gear to function to the level they were designed to do.

Thanks Mr Brad. I agree and i want to get there with the outboard step by step.. I´ve just got the ssl xlogic 16 ch summing and 4 eq with e and g mode.. i was thinking about a cheaper summing mixer like dangerous or something... but this friend of mine sold me the rack like 2k under actual prize.. (he bought a ssl 80ch board) I really had to expend like 3k more of my inicial budget for summing, and eq. (love those 22k in the eq..btw) so i´ve got in trouble.. hehe and now i´m in the thing with converters to make really worth it... aurora or apogee .. is it worth to save the extra bucks i mean... ITS APOGEE OR AURORA + BUS COMPRESSOR.. and then work like an ant to get e.e. or.. wait a lit bit less and sell my organs in order to please my ears or my client's hehe... I´m not from or in the states btw so i can´t test the gear.. already got a rosetta ad 96.. and love it. i know you already said that you like that chain but i didn't make my investment yet.. i mean.. AURORA 16+PCI E CARD.. around $3500 APOGEE 16 analog i/o and card $6500


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