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MOTU 828x Thunderbolt question Audio Interfaces
Old 11th July 2018
Gear Nut

MOTU 828x Thunderbolt question


I'm really considering a MOTU 828x as the mobile interface for my HP Zbook. My question is about Thunderbolt:

The 828x is a "Thunderbolt 2" interface with the mini-displayport style port, but both ports on my laptop are "Thunderbolt 3" USB-C ports. Unfortunately the manual seems to be under the impression there's only one version of TB port, so there's no distinction between the Displayport and USB-C, so I need a TB3 to TB2 adapter. Unfortunately the Apple adapter has gotten some really bad reviews so I'm looking at this:

Cable Matters Thunderbolt Adapter

Has anyone used a MOTU interface over Thunderbolt3 under Windows 10?
Old 11th July 2018
I use TB2 to FW adapters from apple and they work fine. The things I'm reading suggest that TB does not convert from c down well and that its common among all adapters. No idea why. There is however a new product from Apollo that has a USB C card.
Old 11th July 2018
Lives for gear

First of all, 828x is an old MOTU interface. I'd definitely won't purchase it nowadays.. it was kind of transitional model, which was based on their previous Hybrid (FW/USB) hardware, but for the first time with TB bus. That's likely also the reason, why you didn't find any mention about compatibility with newer version of TB in the manual (it predates them).
Newer AVB lineup is improved in almost every aspect.. better low latency performance, improved conversion, full featured mixer with more DSP effects, expandability via AVB, cross-platform remote control via HTML5 UI.

With regards to TB3->TB2 adapters, it's unfortunately similar to lottery sometimes..
It's not possible to say, Apple is worse or better than Startech (and its OEM versions like you linked - it's likely the same device). It's always matter of compatibility with particular computer and peripheral devices. Generally (not MOTU specific) I've seen some setups, where Apple adapter won't work, because it wasn't compatible with used PD (Power delivery) chip at the motherboard. But on the other hand, I've heard reports, where those Startechs won't work and Apple was fine there.
So pick your poison.. Unless someone is using the exact same setup as you (means computer, adapter, interface.. all the drivers/firmware), there's always some chance, you'd need to test the other variant.
IIRC MOTU somewhere noted that Startech adapter during the launch of TB Windows drivers. Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter – Macbook and Windows Compatible: Computers & Accessories
(however it doesn't mean, the Apple adapter won't be working at all.)

Old 26th January 2019
Here for the gear
Im having an issue using thunder with my motto 828x, pops and clicks but if I use usb everything works great, any suggestions. Im using a iMac not windows
Old 27th January 2019
Lives for gear


Last edited by samsam; 5th February 2019 at 08:19 AM..
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