Universal Audio Announces New Apollo X Thunderbolt 3 Interfaces for Mac and Windows - Page 54 - Gearslutz
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Universal Audio Announces New Apollo X Thunderbolt 3 Interfaces for Mac and Windows
Old 31st August 2020 | Show parent
  #1591
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalGrease View Post
Posting on Gearslutz is much like swimming in the ocean with bucket of chum in one hand, but here we go....

My particular x16, when clocked externally by the Grimm CC2, is the finest sound I have ever had at my disposal. I am comparing this with the Cranesong Solaris, and that is an extremely good unit.

The Solaris, at less than half the cost of the x16 plus Grimm combination, still competes closely in sound quality, when fed via AES and using the Solaris fixed outputs. (The fixed outputs do sound better than the variable outputs on the Solaris.) I tested this at 44.1, 96, and 192K.

Interestingly, the sound quality of the Solaris improved noticeably when fed from the AES output of the x16. I attribute this to the Thunderbolt 3 data flow, which must be of more stable stuff than standard USB, even with my USB re-clocking efforts. This is also a tribute to the engineering on the x16 that it passes a very high quality digital stream.

What am I listening on:
Amphion Two18
Optoma/NuForce class AB amplifier (also tested with Amphion AMP500)
Grimm TPR audio cables and AES cable

What did I listen to?
HD tracks mastered at high sample rates.
SoundCloud, Netflix etc. at 44.1
Some tracks I recorded on the Dangerous AD+ at 192K in previous testing. (Those tests will need to be re-done in view of the new setup)

I won't bore you with too many more details, except to emphasize that the external Grimm CC2 clock (with my particular x16) is a necessity. To put this in perspective: Without the CC2, the Solaris would be the champion in this test by a good margin. (To my spoiled ears at least.) Yes.

Ear fatigue is at an all time low. More clarity throughout the range. Fab Dupont stated that the x16 had an extra octave of clean tight bass. I was skeptical, but to my ears it sounds like he is correct. Even compared to the Solaris.

Before passing judgement on the x16, you owe it to yourself to audition a Grimm CC2.
Beautiful review! Thanks! Dos this apply also to the AD (for example after summing). I’m interested in the Convert AD+ but maybe the CC2 can also improve my print? Thanks!
Old 31st August 2020 | Show parent
  #1592
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pizzaia View Post
Beautiful review! Thanks! Dos this apply also to the AD (for example after summing). I’m interested in the Convert AD+ but maybe the CC2 can also improve my print? Thanks!
I have an AD+ and in my original testing, I liked the Grimm clocking over the onboard Dangerous clock. I know of two other Slutz members who have chosen the Grimm for clocking and prefer it over the onboard clocking of the AD+.

There is a response buried in some thread where a Dangerous rep stated that their clock is specified to be "under 10 picosecond jitter". The Grimm and Cranesong clocks are spec'd at under 1 picosecond jitter.

Ultimately you will need to test for yourself of course.
Old 31st August 2020 | Show parent
  #1593
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitalGrease View Post
I have an AD+ and in my original testing, I liked the Grimm clocking over the onboard Dangerous clock. I know of two other Slutz members who have chosen the Grimm for clocking and prefer it over the onboard clocking of the AD+.

There is a response buried in some thread where a Dangerous rep stated that their clock is specified to be "under 10 picosecond jitter". The Grimm and Cranesong clocks are spec'd at under 1 picosecond jitter.

Ultimately you will need to test for yourself of course.
Great, thanks for sharing. I'll test the CC2 with my setup soon.
Old 31st August 2020 | Show parent
  #1594
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pizzaia View Post
Great, thanks for sharing. I'll test the CC2 with my setup soon.
I look forward to your results. (I did not do detailed testing on the A/D side of the x16)
Old 1st September 2020 | Show parent
  #1595
.. can of worms .. I find it hard to believe that this box sounds better with an external clock..
Old 1st September 2020 | Show parent
  #1596
Quote:
Originally Posted by RightOnRome View Post
.. can of worms .. I find it hard to believe that this box sounds better with an external clock..
I’ve just tested the line i/o on an X6 with an out the box sum, so that is using the DA/AD and it definitely sounds slightly better when clocked to the Grimm CC2 over word-clock.

I did 2 real-time bounces of the same mix (over at the Grimm thread: Grimm CC2 - fantastic !) and there is a subtle difference. I think it sounds better.

BUT.....

For simple audio playback from my Mac I don’t hear an improvement when clocked to the Grimm and in fact for the monitor out DA I think it sounds worse. But as I like to use analog summing for what I do, I just felt that the DA/AD trip could sound better, hence me trying the Grimm. I’ll be doing some more mixes over the next few days and weeks, I’ll update if the position changes.

Also of course this is the X6 and not the X16, which has a better DA, but the same AD. So that might be different.
Old 27th September 2020
  #1597
Curious about adding additional ADAT to two apollos. I have a Twin mk2 and an APollo X8. Can I add a 16 channel ADAT interface to this combo? So the X8 would be syncing 8 channels IO and the Adat would just handle 8 ins through ADAT? One wordclock to the ADAT interface from the X8 would handle clocking. Is this possible?

Thanks
Old 27th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1598
Manufacturer
 
Universal Audio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by szyam View Post
Curious about adding additional ADAT to two apollos. I have a Twin mk2 and an APollo X8. Can I add a 16 channel ADAT interface to this combo? So the X8 would be syncing 8 channels IO and the Adat would just handle 8 ins through ADAT? One wordclock to the ADAT interface from the X8 would handle clocking. Is this possible?

Thanks
Sure, this should work no problem.
Old 27th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1599
Quote:
Originally Posted by Universal Audio View Post
Sure, this should work no problem.
Sorry I meant to say that the TWIN would handle another 8 in. I thought I read in the manual that onlt one adat expander can be added to an Apollo system. So just double checking.
Old 27th September 2020
  #1600
Here for the gear
 

I just hope that they don't have the old "Waves" mentality with trying to squeeze us for every last dime before they realize that they should have given us UAD3 or more DSP sooner before its too late.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1601
Manufacturer
 
Universal Audio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by szyam View Post
Sorry I meant to say that the TWIN would handle another 8 in. I thought I read in the manual that onlt one adat expander can be added to an Apollo system. So just double checking.
Yes, it's 8 channels per unit.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1602
JGM
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Universal Audio View Post
Yes, it's 8 channels per unit.
So to be clear per @ szyam ‘s question if I had a Twin mk2 and an Apollo x8 I can connect an 8 channel ADAT extender to each of the Apollos simultaneously and have access to all 16 additional channels at the same time?
Is that what was meant by “it’s 8 channels per unit.”
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1603
Manufacturer
 
Universal Audio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JGM View Post
So to be clear per @ szyam ‘s question if I had a Twin mk2 and an Apollo x8 I can connect an 8 channel ADAT extender to each of the Apollos simultaneously and have access to all 16 additional channels at the same time?
Is that what was meant by “it’s 8 channels per unit.”
Correct.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1604
Quote:
Originally Posted by Universal Audio View Post
Correct.
Hi Drew (if that's still you?)

In the above scenario, would it be the case that the latency would be the same or different for the two ADAT devices, in terms of the audio returned back to Console or the DAW? I think I'm right in saying that, the latency at least would be different to audio at the line ins on the x8 for instance?
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1605
Manufacturer
 
Universal Audio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by blayz2002 View Post
Hi Drew (if that's still you?)

In the above scenario, would it be the case that the latency would be the same or different for the two ADAT devices, in terms of the audio returned back to Console or the DAW? I think I'm right in saying that, the latency at least would be different to audio at the line ins on the x8 for instance?
Yup, still Drew.

All converters/devices have their own unique timings, so yes they could be different. But if it's a 16 channel device, they'd all be the same.
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1606
Quote:
Originally Posted by Universal Audio View Post
Yup, still Drew.

All converters/devices have their own unique timings, so yes they could be different. But if it's a 16 channel device, they'd all be the same.
Cheers Drew Glad to see you're still around.

I see, you mean one 16 i/o ADAT interface and split connection to the Apollos between the two? Never thought of that!
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1607
Quote:
Originally Posted by blayz2002 View Post
Cheers Drew Glad to see you're still around.

I see, you mean one 16 i/o ADAT interface and split connection to the Apollos between the two? Never thought of that!
Yea I was considering picking up the Ferrofish as it was on sale over the weekend, 20% off. However I really don't like dealing with ADAT and am just considering moving to a X16 from my X8 so I didn't pick it up. I think it could be a good addition though...

I'm pretty sure I read that only one Apollo in a multi-Apollo system could be expanded via ADAT, so that's why I was asking. But, not finding that statement now...
Old 28th September 2020 | Show parent
  #1608
JGM
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by szyam View Post
Yea I was considering picking up the Ferrofish as it was on sale over the weekend, 20% off. However I really don't like dealing with ADAT and am just considering moving to a X16 from my X8 so I didn't pick it up. I think it could be a good addition though...

I'm pretty sure I read that only one Apollo in a multi-Apollo system could be expanded via ADAT, so that's why I was asking. But, not finding that statement now...
I think that one Apollo statement might have been referring only to an Apollo system connected to the computer via FireWire.
Old 5th October 2020
  #1609
Does UA release their Apollo Q4 promos in Oct or November? I thought it was Oct in the past but not sure. I saw the last promo ended Sep 30 but haven't seen anything new mentioned yet...
Old 5th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1610
Manufacturer
 
Universal Audio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by szyam View Post
Does UA release their Apollo Q4 promos in Oct or November? I thought it was Oct in the past but not sure. I saw the last promo ended Sep 30 but haven't seen anything new mentioned yet...
Sometimes we mix it up.
Old 5th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1611
Quote:
Originally Posted by Universal Audio View Post
Sometimes we mix it up.
Mix up something tastey!
Old 6th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1612
Picking up my 3rd Apollo interface. The x16. Current have 2 x6 which i need to swap for 2 x8’s.

So far it’s been SUPER ROCK SOLID.
Old 6th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1613
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick_ View Post
Picking up my 3rd Apollo interface. The x16. Current have 2 x6 which i need to swap for 2 x8’s.

So far it’s been SUPER ROCK SOLID.
Nice! My X8 has been super solid too.

Ale
Old 7th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1614
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djrustycans's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Universal Audio View Post
Hi djrustycans,
Happy to help.

1. yes, will work perfectly.

2. you'd need another adaptor, but the Twin will work hanging off the x6 no problem.

3. You'd probably add that to a second port with a FW to TB adaptor.

4. Can't really speak to the subjective converter situation, sorry. I certainly wouldn't consider it a step down in any way shape or form. In fact, much of our listening testes would conclude the opposite.

Hope this helps and let me know if you have any follow up questions.
Hi!

Still looking in to buying more UAD horsepower with either an Octo or the X6 with the added benefits.

Someone mentioned earlier in this thread that in order to use the Apollo Twin as a monitor controller for the X6, it needed to be a Mk2 or above? Is this correct? I have the Mk1..

As an aside, I did some extensive testing of UAD saturation from preamps and compressors recently and pitted them against my Silver Bullet API & Neve circuits and also LOTS of native plugin preamps and saturators.

I was quite taken aback by how the UAD preamp saturation stays dynamic - almost as good as the Silver Bullet in some ways. For example, even the PA Lindell 80 series at full oversampling is quite simply flat compared to UAD 1073. It’s the same story for nearly all other native plugins I’ve tested, ranging from Fuse, to PA, SKnote, Soundtoys, Kush.....

Very happy with UAD right now!
Old 7th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1615
Manufacturer
 
Universal Audio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by djrustycans View Post
Hi!

Still looking in to buying more UAD horsepower with either an Octo or the X6 with the added benefits.

Someone mentioned earlier in this thread that in order to use the Apollo Twin as a monitor controller for the X6, it needed to be a Mk2 or above? Is this correct? I have the Mk1..

As an aside, I did some extensive testing of UAD saturation from preamps and compressors recently and pitted them against my Silver Bullet API & Neve circuits and also LOTS of native plugin preamps and saturators.

I was quite taken aback by how the UAD preamp saturation stays dynamic - almost as good as the Silver Bullet in some ways. For example, even the PA Lindell 80 series at full oversampling is quite simply flat compared to UAD 1073. It’s the same story for nearly all other native plugins I’ve tested, ranging from Fuse, to PA, SKnote, Soundtoys, Kush.....

Very happy with UAD right now!
MKI will do it, but volume only. It lacks the buttons for the rest of the functionality.

re: plugin quality. Thanks for taking the time to test and post your results. We work REALLY hard and take a LONG time with our plugin development (to achieve the results you've found) and are happy to hear that it's noticed!
Old 7th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1616
Lives for gear
 
djrustycans's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Universal Audio View Post
MKI will do it, but volume only. It lacks the buttons for the rest of the functionality.

re: plugin quality. Thanks for taking the time to test and post your results. We work REALLY hard and take a LONG time with our plugin development (to achieve the results you've found) and are happy to hear that it's noticed!
Thanks Drew. My current Mac only has 2 TB1 ports - one of which I plan to use with possibly the X6 and the Twin coming off that.

The other port will be using an OWC SSD enclosure, I plan to daisy chain that with my old Satellite QUAD FW with the Apple TB 3to2 adapter. Do you see that being ok?

I currently use the QUAD on its own TB1 port and it works fine.

I NEED to spread the word re UAD plugins and saturation - not something people talk about much...
Old 7th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1617
Manufacturer
 
Universal Audio's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by djrustycans View Post
The other port will be using an OWC SSD enclosure, I plan to daisy chain that with my old Satellite QUAD FW with the Apple TB 3to2 adapter. Do you see that being ok?

I currently use the QUAD on its own TB1 port and it works fine.
I think that will work just fine. Technically the only supported config is for all devices to be connected serially off the same port. We've had to go to this due to TB chipset changes in recent years.

Since Apollos are "realtime" in nature and Sats are not, they do play by slightly different rules.

Hope this helps.
Old 7th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1618
Lives for gear
 
djrustycans's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Universal Audio View Post
I think that will work just fine. Technically the only supported config is for all devices to be connected serially off the same port. We've had to go to this due to TB chipset changes in recent years.

Since Apollos are "realtime" in nature and Sats are not, they do play by slightly different rules.

Hope this helps.
Great, ta! I see I've just missed the Unison promotion - is there anything else??
Old 7th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1619
Quote:
Originally Posted by djrustycans View Post
Thanks Drew. My current Mac only has 2 TB1 ports - one of which I plan to use with possibly the X6 and the Twin coming off that.

The other port will be using an OWC SSD enclosure, I plan to daisy chain that with my old Satellite QUAD FW with the Apple TB 3to2 adapter. Do you see that being ok.
I have an X8 plugged into my Mac and a twin plugged into an OWC hub, no problems.
Old 7th October 2020 | Show parent
  #1620
Manufacturer
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djrustycans View Post
- is there anything else??
Promos?
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