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How bad is MOTU 828 mkII audio conversion? (Let's find out) Audio Interfaces
Old 24th October 2012
  #61
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IkennaFuNkEn's Avatar
 

I Pmed you nms

Dxavier... that sounds promising, I would love to hear her work!
Old 24th October 2012
  #62
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Ian_Dowling's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by prontold View Post
The MOTU 828 mk II gets a bad rap for its converters, internal clock, and preamp. Since I have been considering using some analog gear for mixing, I had been wondering exactly how much a signal sent out of the 828's D-A converters and back in for another round of A-D might suffer. In order to qualify the suckiness of the MOTU, I put together a little midi sequence of drums and synths in my trial version of ableton live and sent the resulting wav file in and out of the interface for five passes of conversion at 44.1 khz and 88.2 khz sampling rates (24 bit). The results are posted below.


So what do the rest of you slutz think? Are there noticeable differences? What do you see if you compare the original wav file to the converted files on a spectrogram?
I don't understand what you tried to do but the 44.1 files sound bigger, brighter , and have more definition and energy , when compared to the 88.2 which sound gloomy, smaller, darker, less defined and boring.
Old 24th October 2012
  #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nms View Post

Honestly, most of these are really interchangeable including the MR816 if you're not doing commercial recordings working on nice monitors & outboard gear. Deadmau5 used a Motu Ultralite mk3 as his tour interface for a while. If you think your interface is holding you back chances are good you've been spending too much time on gearslutz!
Absolutely! Although I'd take it even further and say that pretty much any interface on the current market is interchangeable even if you are doing commercial recordings. It all just comes down to how many channels you want, what kind of driver stability/performance you require and then how much are you prepared to spend to get incremental gains. (And the higher up the money tree you go, the more incremental it gets.)

One thing's for sure - you'll get much better recordings and mixes if you just get on and use the gear you've got rather than obsessing over a few dB here or there on a spec sheet and wondering whether XYZ will be better than ABC.

But this is GearSlutz, so it's all about the numbers and hardly ever about the music, right? :(
Old 24th October 2012
  #64
nms
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Make no mistake, there are differences and there are some which sound better to most who listen. I've witnessed several people all consciously noticing and picking units in blind tests and the sound I get using the Hilo to feed my Focal Twins is a perfect example of where nice conversion makes sense. Your monitors should be up to par first for it to make sense.
Old 24th October 2012
  #65
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Yes, I know there are differences. All I'm saying is that it is perfectly possible to produce professional/commercial recordings with pretty much any interface on the market nowadays. I honestly don't think there's anything out there that is so hideously, godawfully, unusably bad that you couldn't do good work on it, so long as you have at least some idea what you're doing and know your way around. There are umpteen things in the signal chain that will make as much (or more) difference to the end result as the interface/converter. First and foremost, the music itself. If you haven't got that right, it doesn't matter what gear you use.

I know that you've been on a long quest to get the best setup you can in terms of clarity, transparency, etc. That's cool, that's your path and I think you've nailed it down well. But it doesn't mean that the other paths don't work. For instance, there's no way I'd spend that much money (or time) on things like interfaces, converters, etc. For me, they're just a convenient nut and bolt - necessary, but not really important. If I was going to drop silly amounts of money, it would be on instruments, not the gear to record them. But that's my path - I can do what I want to do with the gear I've got and it's good enough.

And I'm going to shut up now 'cos I've derailed things far enough already. Hell, maybe I'm just in a curmudgeonly mood today. It's been a long year - just ignore me folks, I'm rambling...

(Hey! Who said "as usual" back there?)

Old 24th October 2012
  #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Pederson View Post
I really appreciate this info because I am seriously looking at the motu mk3 hybrid (usb/firewire) or the Apogee Ensemble for example (which costs alot more)
studio b has a motu mk3 896 and it is just fine.. sounds as good as the BL modded hd 192 that is in A
Old 24th October 2012
  #67
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mattjew24's Avatar
 

Comparing the converters to itself is not going to explain why the conversion sucks.

Apogee, lynx, Avid converters just sound bigger and better and wider.
Old 24th October 2012
  #68
nms
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Visit my thread in the mastering forum comparing the 828mk2 converters to $3k worth of Mytek/Lavry and tell me the 828mk2 conversion sucks. Pure nonsense. 9 out of 9 votes for the 828mk2 so far when used to feed both ends of an analog chain and this is among pros with nice monitoring (the reason the results are consistent and actually useful unlike many listening tests). Mind you, the fact the unit's DAC & ADC run simultaneously on the same clock when feeding an analog chain allows better results than when the unit runs its own clock and is just tracking or just monitoring.

The 828mk2 can be improved by a good external clock. I've proven and measured this. Clocked off a Lavry AD10, Hilo, Symphony etc it works best. That said, I know people touring & recording great sounding albums with thousands worth of analog synths using the unit on its own.
Old 17th November 2012
  #69
Gear Addict
 

I'm curious if anyone knows whether the 828 mkii D/A converters used for the main pair of analog outs are the same as those used for the 8 individual analog outs. The manual says that all 10 are 24 bit/128x oversampling converters, but there would be no reason they'd put in different ones for the mains would there?

Also, would a manufacturer use the same converters for a headphone out as for the other outs?
Old 3rd November 2013
  #70
Here for the gear
motu 828 mk2 conversion

Okay I a lot of problems with my 828 mk2 audio dropouts, click and pops no audio,in and out all the time!!!! it was a nightmare
____just clocked it externally using a bnc cable and optical to my persons d8 ...............Huge difference in stability (it actually works now) and sound quality sounds much cleaner and im very happy as it was on its way to the trash!!!!!!

There are some weird display things going on but I'm sure a master reset will solve them so the clocks and audio in the moth 828mk2 is crap!!!!!!but the machine is awesome great analog inputs and outputs bnc optical ,and spdif
the main thing is the sound use a external converter !!!!!
im not going to add a converter via spdif like planned
just add a apogee one as a aggregate device!!!!!!!!for a great preamp and apogee conversion for mix monitoring!!
not a amazing pro setup but a good start .
used a lynx one card which is still the best thing i have ever heard ever!!!!!!!!!
Old 3rd November 2013
  #71
Gear Nut
 

You may want to check the condition of a voltage regulator, which folks have said is prone to breaking free of it's solder joints in consequence of the heat it generates.

See thread:
https://www.gearslutz.com/board/low-e...nightmare.html
Old 9th April 2014
  #72
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828 mkii compared to what.

Thanks for doing this, but I'm not convinced yet. If the point here is that the 828 mkii is worse than anything else out there, I don't see how this demonstrates that. Has the same test been done on other units?

My thought is that the effect of passing through the hardware in this test is exponentially multiplied in each pass, if I understand what was done. Remember the old lesson of starting with a penny and doubling each day, having over a million dollars in less than a month? I imagine theoretical inaudible differences can quickly become audible when you compound the effect pass after pass. This compounded effect could be the converters in either direction, or possibly something else?

Is there anything else to suggest this is unique to the 828 mkii?

Thanks

Last edited by Deanster; 9th April 2014 at 09:07 PM.. Reason: Submitted too soon
Old 9th April 2014
  #73
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I put this up a pretty long time ago, but all I was trying to do at the time was figure out if I should be concerned at all about routing audio out of my 828 through external processing and back. To me it didn't seem like there was much to worry about.
Old 11th April 2014
  #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deanster View Post
Thanks for doing this, but I'm not convinced yet. If the point here is that the 828 mkii is worse than anything else out there, I don't see how this demonstrates that. Has the same test been done on other units?

My thought is that the effect of passing through the hardware in this test is exponentially multiplied in each pass, if I understand what was done. Remember the old lesson of starting with a penny and doubling each day, having over a million dollars in less than a month? I imagine theoretical inaudible differences can quickly become audible when you compound the effect pass after pass. This compounded effect could be the converters in either direction, or possibly something else?

Is there anything else to suggest this is unique to the 828 mkii?

Thanks
My last CD was mostly recorded on an 828mki.
Ended up being a multi-year collaboration near the end of the project I moved to an Apollo Duo.

There was nothing wrong with the audio from the 828.

Nobody knows or can tell what songs were done on 828 vs the Apollo except me.

Never heard the comment," Your music sucks because you use an 828."

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