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Metric Halo ULN-8 3d vs. Apollo x8p
Old 20th October 2019
  #31
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swafford's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dimosz View Post
What about recording vocals? should i choose the uln2?
or should i go to a higher? like lio 8
i want this interface cause it has really nice latency and amazing converters to make covers on youtube
You'd have to have a external preamp or add the +4 preamp option to an LIO8.

This is pretty subjective and it's hard to tell what one person will be happy with and another will be "meh." But here goes.

I started out with a ULN2 15 years ago. Still have it, upgraded to 3D. It's an amazing box - besides the preamps, it has an separate monitor and HP section as well as sends and returns for each channel. Plus knobs. I like knobs. I eventually added 2 x 2882, but mostly used the ULN2 for vocals. When the ULN8 came out (essentially an LIO8 with 8 preamps) MH had an awesome customer only deal, so I sold the 2x2882 and bought the ULN8 10 years ago, now upgraded to 3D. A fantastic backbone to any studio.

First, to avoid confusion, understand the difference between an LIO8 and a ULN8 is the LIO8 does not have any preamps. You can add them - 4 at a time - though. The ULN8 is an LIO8 with 8 preamps. OK? So same preamps with the ULN8/LIO+preamps and those preamps are slightly better sounding then the ULN2 - a bit more gain and little bit more HiFi. You can pull great vocals from either the ULN2 or the ULN8 pres. They are clean and neutral, but not sterile and have plenty of gain. Again, the feature set between the ULN2 and LIO/ULN8 is different, so we're just talking about preamps here.

All that said, after 10 years of using the ULN2 and ULN8, I now track most of my vocals through an external preamp (Coil Audio CA-70) as I love the heavy tube/retro sound I get.

But for you, I think either ULN2/LIO+ pres will work great for vocals. Take a look at each boxes feature set and decide what is going to work for you.
Old 20th October 2019
  #32
Gear Head
 

so..

So in order to understand uln-2 is like all these audio interfaces out there ..like focusrite apogee element ..you just connect it with usb and you can record with logic? or you have to add something?..i want the simpler setup to record my vocals and maybe make some mixing but to sound really nice..i think prism lyra 1 would be more simple solution but i like more the metric halo sound.
Old 21st October 2019
  #33
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swafford's Avatar
 

Yes. Metric Halo makes audio interfaces. You can connect via USB-C or an ethernet cable. Lowest latency is via an ethernet cable, which is what I use. I also use Logic.
Old 21st October 2019
  #34
Gear Head
 

but if i connect through usb -c i will have latency like focusrite scarlett 2nd gen?
Old 21st October 2019
  #35
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swafford's Avatar
 

don't know.
Old 22nd October 2019
  #36
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imusic's Avatar
Hi,

I have an Apollo X6 and a ULN8-3d here and I have to say both units are doing their job very well ...

my favorite is the ULN8 and I love the UAD plug ins ...

hope this helps, imusic
Old 22nd October 2019
  #37
Gear Nut
 

I'll throw my two cents in here and say that I had a Twin MkII and eventually wanted more ins and outs and after a ton of research ended up going with an LIO-8 3D. It felt like a pretty big step up to me. I haven't used the new X series but for my money it was kind of night and day. However, I did end up getting a Satellite so I could use the UAD reverb plugins and Townsend Labs Sphere models, so I have the best of both worlds now.
Old 24th October 2019
  #38
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Resonate-audio View Post
I currently own 2 ULN8 interfaces and did the 3d upgrade last year. I have owned an Apollo8 and currently have about 16 cores of UAD that are useless to me (as well as many $k worth of their plugins).

As interfaces, they cannot be compared. The ULN is leaps and bounds better than the UAD system I had. I was unable to trust the UAD Apollo or any of their systems. No matter which Mac I used them on (MacPro, various Macbooks, iMac) I would always get Error -38 messages. Such a hugely unreliable system if stability is what you seek. Even now I've had to bomb an Octo system that will not stay stable on a new MBP or trashcan Mac. After so many emails, so much money spent trying fixes etc, I gave up on UAD and cut my losses. I don't see the value anymore in having an oversized, unreliable 'dongle' chained to my workflow anymore.

Metric Halo on the other hand has been rock solid (with a few teething issues going over to 3D). The quality of the preamps is excellent. The Apollo preamps had so little headroom, noisy, and even their line ins went through these prosumer sounding pre's. It was all sales hype, smoke and mirrors to me, and when A/B the ULN against it, it was a no-brainer. If running realtime plugins is your thing, get an arrow (for your autotune vocalists in studio), but I'd never move back to UAD for interfaces.

I use the ULN's stacked for classical recordings, I use one often for multi-channel field recording (powered via NP-1) and the routing and flexibility is second to none.
Is the ULN not capable of running real time plugins? First i've heard of this interface and not sure if I misinterpreting your comments (have been looking at the x8p). I record instruments, vocals etc but also use real-time software synths and VST's for various stuff. How is the latency performance of the ULN? I cant seem to find much info on it online.
Old 26th October 2019
  #39
Here for the gear
Hi guys! Since Metric Halo is such an underground subject I guess this is my best shot. I bought my first ULN-8 3D in late August this year, it's almost November now. I bought them for Thomann (not saying falsely) because of all the hype relative to this hardware (they are also NAMM TEC nominees). The first one that arrived had a buzzing/crackling impossible to record grounding loop sound on the D.I. channel. After talking for many weeks with Jon from MH, and testing it in different housings with different instruments and all kinds off possibilities, he still insisted that I was experiencing an environmental issue and that returning it would do nothing and I should buy a external DI box while they "fixed" the problem... if it was to ever be fixed. Eventually, and for what is worth, I should have bought the DI box, because the next ULN-8 Thomann sent me would not even turn on. I know, maybe bad luck, but people from EUROPE. Is there some kind of issues you've heard about it??? I don't know if I should ask for a 3rd one, since Jon really insisted it was an environmental problem I had. It's insane... Is metric halo really that kind of a safe buy? Isn't much of this ramble made by people who are biased and also some fake accounts? I believe they sound awesome, just didn't know you had to order them 3 times in order to get them to work. What the actual f*ck... please someone with more insight can share my history. Sorry for the English
Old 26th October 2019
  #40
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b0se's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by andre. View Post
Hi guys! Since Metric Halo is such an underground subject I guess this is my best shot. I bought my first ULN-8 3D in late August this year, it's almost November now. I bought them for Thomann (not saying falsely) because of all the hype relative to this hardware (they are also NAMM TEC nominees). The first one that arrived had a buzzing/crackling impossible to record grounding loop sound on the D.I. channel. After talking for many weeks with Jon from MH, and testing it in different housings with different instruments and all kinds off possibilities, he still insisted that I was experiencing an environmental issue and that returning it would do nothing and I should buy a external DI box while they "fixed" the problem... if it was to ever be fixed. Eventually, and for what is worth, I should have bought the DI box, because the next ULN-8 Thomann sent me would not even turn on. I know, maybe bad luck, but people from EUROPE. Is there some kind of issues you've heard about it??? I don't know if I should ask for a 3rd one, since Jon really insisted it was an environmental problem I had. It's insane... Is metric halo really that kind of a safe buy? Isn't much of this ramble made by people who are biased and also some fake accounts? I believe they sound awesome, just didn't know you had to order them 3 times in order to get them to work. What the actual f*ck... please someone with more insight can share my history. Sorry for the English
That sucks! I bought mine direct and the support was fantastic, even as far as using TeamViewer to remote control my Mac and set everything up how I wanted (!) and give me an overview of how the new MIO Console worked.
Old 26th October 2019
  #41
Here for the gear
Yes, b0se. I mean, their support was professional. More than the reseller Thomann, which is a big company always grabbing on their costumer service, those arseholes ghosted me and now don't even return me my money lol. There are few resellers in Europe and very few units arriving at a fair price and now I've been waiting to know if, in Germany, where the first unit I received is now, it still happens. Because I doubt it was an environmental problem and someone already complained about the PCUs being noisy and it's not really my area, but the power supplies have been stated to be the problem before, although Metric Halo says it isn't. When my second one arrived it didn't turn on and I couldn't check it for myself. Now I have to wait a month to have another one coming or decide if I want one. ANY PERSON HERE EXPERIENCED THE SAME PROBLEM? MAINLY IN EUROPE. And is there a direct comparison between the ULN-8 3D and other updated audio interfaces? We really need some dry audio comparison. There's only one DIY guy playing drums on Youtube. C'mon Metric Halo and/or audio equipment vloggers, how do you expect the world to know this interfaces? Personally, I was never able to record a clean signal so I can't speak against my prior experience. Look at this thread pls if you are having problems. I had some similarities: Metric Halo Lio and ULN-8 3d worst buy ever
Old 26th October 2019
  #42
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by andre. View Post
Yes, b0se. I mean, their support was professional. More than the reseller Thomann, which is a big company always grabbing on their costumer service, those arseholes ghosted me and now don't even return me my money lol. There are few resellers in Europe and very few units arriving at a fair price and now I've been waiting to know if, in Germany, where the first unit I received is now, it still happens. Because I doubt it was an environmental problem and someone already complained about the PCUs being noisy and it's not really my area, but the power supplies have been stated to be the problem before, although Metric Halo says it isn't. When my second one arrived it didn't turn on and I couldn't check it for myself. Now I have to wait a month to have another one coming or decide if I want one. ANY PERSON HERE EXPERIENCED THE SAME PROBLEM? MAINLY IN EUROPE. And is there a direct comparison between the ULN-8 3D and other updated audio interfaces? We really need some dry audio comparison. There's only one DIY guy playing drums on Youtube. C'mon Metric Halo and/or audio equipment vloggers, how do you expect the world to know this interfaces? Personally, I was never able to record a clean signal so I can't speak against my prior experience. Look at this thread pls if you are having problems. I had some similarities: Metric Halo Lio and ULN-8 3d worst buy ever


I bought my first LIO-8(have 3 of them now) from Thomann,and had a problem on one of DI inputs.Reported that to customer service,and got replacement within 24hrs.Even before I returned the defective one!
So,I don’t quite understand it,but did Thomann refused to replace non functioning units?
In Germany,after 2 consecutive Reklamations,you are allowed to request complete refund.Or,demanding a unit that works as advertised.

I’m very much satisfied with MH and Thomann.

Hope that help a bit

Cheers
Old 26th October 2019
  #43
Here for the gear
Thomann did the same with me. They only asked for the returning receipt and sent me another one. They said it was an exclusive treatment, due to my situation, and that's very nice of them... or was. Then, they said I had to wait for the 2 audio interfaces to arrive, which takes about month... from Portugal to Germany (the orders arrive in 3 days, different delivery processes) and stopped answering me. Then, they said they would test my audio interface when it got there, just a "favor I asked" to check if the issue was due to my environment or if the unit was defected and I should order another one. This test would take 5 minutes top. Turn on the audio interface (no need for a connection to any device since the issue itself was shown in the output level meters - it was that high of a noise floor, in both DI inputs) and inform me. So, they send me a mail weeks later saying they actually sent it to the Metric Halo in Germany and it would take a month to get there and then they would test it and get back on me. I don't know, I don't want to seem a bastard but c'mon, disappointment to the highest level. They assured me they would test it. the sub25 cables didn't come in time to test the 8 analog preamps , and I really wanted a perfectly functioning audio interface, and as I said before, I tested it in every way possible, which almost made me loose my mind eheheheh, everyday I would exchange mails and do different tests, and now, for nothing. That's why I'm here. I don't want to spend months on this. Making my first thread on gearslutz. Thanks for your testemony, it makes me wonder. Thomann never failed me before, for so many years, I hope this is a misunderstanding but they must keep ther word on this matters and be organized! Maybe this there is a dfference between countries power supply even though it's Europe which may result in a malfunctioning incompatibility of some kind? This sounds stupid as f*ck but makes me think. Nice no meet you btw !! Hope. Can this be a power supply d to get a mail from Thomann soon, they really ditched me ahaahahahhah, not what I was expecting
Old 26th October 2019
  #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andre. View Post
Isn't much of this ramble made by people who are biased and also some fake accounts?
All I can say is:

Do you have any proof of this?!? I could turn it around and say you are a fake account designed to trash MH products as you have no posting history on Gearslutz - but I'm not going to do that as I'm not into paranoid conspiracy theories.

Now to the more serious part of your questions. My wife and I are owners of MH products for over 14 years as well as convertors by Apogee, Crane Song, Dangerous and the now discontinued but amazing UA2192.

We currently own 2 x 2882s, & 2 x LIOs and a close friend has 2 x 2882s (in addition to other convertors listed). We are based in Paris and have never had issues with power supplies for any of our interfaces nor has our friend with the 2 x 2882s.

In regards to the ground loop sound on the DI channel, I would kind of have to agree with Jon on this because it's super easy to have ground loop type problems when recording especially in home studios and that's one of the most important reasons to have/use DI boxes. This is an established fact in pro audio & live sound. We own multiple Radial DI boxes for this reason.

You could have instantly established if this was the problem by just renting or buying a DI box and doing a simple test with your ULN-8.

MH is a solid and super reliable company. There are certain pro audio companies that do VERY little advertising and marketing letting their customers word of mouth build their user base. Some of these companies which are at the top of the game for convertors are Crane Song, Metric Halo, JFC, Prism, & Forssell.

I totally sympathise with your situation as It's massively frustrating when you encounter problems and it seems like it takes forever to get them fixed. This is one reason I avoid big retailers with critical gear purchases and try to work directly with the manufacturers as much as possible.

My advice to you would be to cancel your order with THOMANN and request a full refund. Then call Stefan at Metric Halo Germany and order a new unit directly from him as you can explain to him your concerns and issues and he can make sure that your experience is super smooth.

Good luck and I hope it works out for you.

Last edited by siddhu; 26th October 2019 at 08:08 PM.. Reason: syntax errors
Old 26th October 2019
  #45
Here for the gear
I do. If you can tell me the right way to upload the same video I sent to Thomann and Metric Halo here in Gearslutz I'd be happy to do that. That's not a crazy conspiracy theory since it happens with almost all tech forums and companies. I assume the interfaces are awesome, otherwise, I'd not be spending my time on this. But yeah, I could also be a costumer with bad luck but hey, you have to admit there is little information on the units, even being a small business. Not even a video from their account. Can you or someone please make a raw comparison with other competing hardware and publish it? Thank you for the advice on the German Metric Halo, will ask for the refund definitely
Old 26th October 2019
  #46
Here for the gear
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1th3...ew?usp=sharing

got it. i think the link works. Basically you can see the Input 1 noise floor and the outputs with nothing even turned on. Will also send a file with the sound.
Old 26th October 2019
  #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andre. View Post
I do. If you can tell me the right way to upload the same video I sent to Thomann and Metric Halo here in Gearslutz I'd be happy to do that. That's not a crazy conspiracy theory since it happens with almost all tech forums and companies. I assume the interfaces are awesome, otherwise, I'd not be spending my time on this. But yeah, I could also be a costumer with bad luck but hey, you have to admit there is little information on the units, even being a small business. Not even a video from their account. Can you or someone please make a raw comparison with other competing hardware and publish it? Thank you for the advice on the German Metric Halo, will ask for the refund definitely
Proof? I'm not saying that no brands/companies do that, however, some companies are so solid, ethical, and don't have a "marketing is everything" culture that I would be very, very surprised to see those companies resort to bots and fake accounts. They barely have the bandwidth to do their legitimate accounts let alone fake accounts.

Have you been to Metric Halo's Youtube?!?

On another note, try to understand the difference in corporate culture between the more (dare I say) popular/prosumer brands/companies and the ones I listed in my prior post. For better or worse they just don't feel the need to market and promote the same way that the more popular/prosumer brands do.

For example Forssell Technologies, Crane Song, and JCF don't even have any social media accounts (that I know of) yet are regarded as some of the best converters around. Don't judge quality by popularity or marketing outreach.
Old 26th October 2019
  #48
Lives for gear
 

Just a quick personal anecdote to illustrate what I meant about the word of mouth.

We were turned on to the Metric Halo brand in the early 2000s (maybe around 2003 to 2005) by several super well known and respected audio engineers and producers in LA for whom they were the favoured converters.

So already that far back, they had a pretty solid client base in the pro audio community at a pretty high level.
Old 27th October 2019
  #49
Here for the gear
siddhu, I truly believe Metric Halo is one of those examples of honesty and good ethic. Didn't mean to sound paranoid or even to be moronic... I also heard magical things about MH, and it was mouth-to-mouth, even here in Portugal.

I will order a new one, and forget what happened, but this time directly from the German vendor. Neither spain or portugal have units available.

One thing must be stated though. The videos in their channel are many years old and there are not showcases of new hardware. I believe it would be helpful just to make some A/B comparison or just a semi-professional MH 3D series showcase, like a recording session. I'm already interested in their products but it couldn't hurt, right? There may be other potential buyers that will only ever know about the UA, Apogee, Focusrite, Antelope stuff
I believe the German distributor is the same one Thomann sent my ULN with the DI problem. Just trying to get some closure on this Environmental problem, I truly believe it had nothing to do with it, since everything works perfectly on my ensemble.
- out of topic, for your lazy sunday: Brittany Howard's Jaime is a kickass masterpiece, just a suggestion for anyone reading (just heard it now)
Old 27th October 2019
  #50
Lives for gear
 

Hi Andre, glad to hear my posts helped you move forward productively!

Stefan should be able to help you out - he's a great guy (he's the designer of the incredible legendary Q-Faktor EQ).

I would think that the reason that there are no updated videos yet is because technically, the 3D Mio Console is still in beta.

Logically, as soon as it's out of beta and the first official version is launched, they will put up comparable videos as all the videos they have for the 2D Mio Console software.

Last edited by siddhu; 27th October 2019 at 05:45 PM.. Reason: spelling
Old 4 weeks ago
  #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loji View Post
Never heard the Apollo,

but if you like clean : think Grace, Millennia, DAV ... the ULN8 is excellent. The depth in the low-end in particular (very very clean, but extended) is very good.
Have you heard the Halo 3D converters next to a Burl ADC?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michenal View Post
I have both an Apollo X6 and a Lio 8 and I believe that although the Apollo is very close in terms of sound quality the Metric Halo is still better. I am comparing line inputs AD conversion obviously.

Except for the Burl AD converters (I also have a Burl Bomber B2 adc), I have not heard better conversion than the Metric Halo after all those years. I have the 3D card ready to be installed for an upgrade but still run it on Firewire on my upgraded gratecheese MacPro.. It is quite incredible that such a piece of tech has held up so well after all those years and I am grateful that MH keeps upgrading their existing line of products. They also have excellent tech support and service.

My Apollo X6 is very nice sounding and can be useful once you have their UA plugins. I guess you would not be disappointed by a X8p, but if you want the best conversion you should get the Metric Halo or even better a Burl Mothership.
Have you heard a bomber ADC next to the 3D converters? I’m struggling with getting a second MH unit at the discounted price, or a used Bomber for overdubs and mix down. I can’t afford both ....
Old 4 weeks ago
  #53
Here for the gear
 

Hi! I need a new audio interface to record guitar, synth, voice, drum machine... I have a only thunderbolt connection on my MacBook Pro. I'm thinking about Prism Lyra 2, Metric Halo uln-2 3d, or Apollo twin X Quad. What are your thoughts about these ? Thank you!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #54
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by drockfresh View Post
Have you heard a bomber ADC next to the 3D converters? I’m struggling with getting a second MH unit at the discounted price, or a used Bomber for overdubs and mix down. I can’t afford both ....
I have a MH LIO-8 and Burl B80 with BDA8. I’ve always loved MH conversion and regarded it as a personal benchmark, being better than any interface or converter I’ve ever had before it. The Burl has become the new standard, for me.

On the DA side the Burl sounds like it has more life. It’s “taller” and more clear up top without sounding harsh or bright; unveiled and natural, I would say.

Haven’t heard Burl AD yet, but planning to buy a BAD4M at the end of the month. If Burl AD is anywhere near what their DA sounds like, you’d be in for a real treat getting a Bomber.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #55
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterLarkin View Post
I have a MH LIO-8 and Burl B80 with BDA8. I’ve always loved MH conversion and regarded it as a personal benchmark, being better than any interface or converter I’ve ever had before it. The Burl has become the new standard, for me.

On the DA side the Burl sounds like it has more life. It’s “taller” and more clear up top without sounding harsh or bright; unveiled and natural, I would say.

Haven’t heard Burl AD yet, but planning to buy a BAD4M at the end of the month. If Burl AD is anywhere near what their DA sounds like, you’d be in for a real treat getting a Bomber.
Is your LIO-8 3D?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #56
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by maldenfilms View Post
Is your LIO-8 3D?
Yes, 3D with the MADI x2 optical edge card, that’s how I’m getting the B80 MADI into the daw.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #57
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drockfresh's Avatar
The 3D pre-launch price on the ULN-8 (about 50% off MSRP) was too good so I got a second MH instead of the Burl Bomber. Now I'll just have to wonder how much better it would have been to have the two channels of Burl
Old 4 weeks ago
  #58
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by drockfresh View Post
The 3D pre-launch price on the ULN-8 (about 50% off MSRP) was too good so I got a second MH instead of the Burl Bomber. Now I'll just have to wonder how much better it would have been to have the two channels of Burl
Haha who can argue with that!
Old 4 weeks ago
  #59
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drockfresh's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterLarkin View Post
Haha who can argue with that!
Me. In my head.

Two channels of ultimate mojo conversion on dubs and mixdown....

mmmmmm
Old 4 weeks ago
  #60
Gear Head
 

Burl should be doing a 10% off sale for BF if you’re still interested! Either way, I love the sound of my LIO-8. And B80. Can’t lose either way IMHO
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