“Apollo is the culmination of 10 years of analog and digital audio development here at UA,” said Bill Putnam Jr., Universal Audio founder. “In many ways, it’s brought the analog and digital sides of our company together. With Apollo, we’re delivering the sound, feel, and flow of analog recording with all the conveniences of modern digital equipment, including next-generation Thunderbolt technology.”
Apollo is, first and foremost, a well-built, high-resolution audio interface, featuring premium mic preamps and top-end converters to deliver the lowest THD and highest dynamic range in its class. Its Core Audio and ASIO* drivers ensure compatibility with all major DAWs, including Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, Live, and more. Moreover, Apollo’s Console application and companion Console Recall plug-in (VST/AU/RTAS) provide control and recall of all interface and UAD plug-in settings within individual DAW sessions, even months and years later.
Apollo differentiates itself from all other audio interfaces, however, via its onboard UAD-2 DSP Acceleration. This onboard processing allows for recording through UAD-2 Powered Plug-Ins — with nearly instant sub-2ms latency — so that music producers can quickly monitor, audition, and “print” audio using a wide range of popular analog emulation plug-ins from Ampex, Lexicon, Manley, Neve, Roland, SSL, Studer, and more.** In this way, Apollo’s sonic character and tonal options are virtually limitless. The onboard UAD-2 processors are also available for mixing and mastering, offloading processing from the host computer.
Notably, Apollo offers compatibility with Intel’s new Thunderbolt technology, as found on the newest iMacs, MacBook Pros, and MacBook Airs. Available via a user-installable Thunderbolt Option Card (sold separately), Thunderbolt provides lower latency, reduced audio buffer size, improved performance at high sample rates, and greater UAD plug-in instances versus FireWire.
“Thunderbolt technology makes possible a whole new class of products to enhance music production workflows and creativity,” says Jason Ziller, Director of Marketing and Planning for Thunderbolt technology at Intel® Corporation. “Products like Universal Audio’s Apollo are using Thunderbolt to rock music producers’ worlds.”
Apollo incorporates numerous design hallmarks from classic UA analog gear, including its fast, easy workflow. Dedicated front-panel controls are present for all the most common features, including preamp gain, channel selection, mic pad, +48V phantom power, low cut, monitor level, and dual headphone controls.
Apollo’s connectivity includes 4 digitally controlled analog mic preamps, 8 balanced line inputs and outputs, dual front-panel JFET DIs, digitally-controlled analog monitor outputs, 8 channels of ADAT, 2 channels of S/PDIF, word clock I/O, FireWire 800 (standard), and a Thunderbolt expansion bay — making it a well-equipped centerpiece for the modern project studio.
And UA continous their ridiculus overpricing for the UAD2 DSPs. $500 extra for $50 extra of chips. Must cost them more to do two versions than what they gain from this. If they had made a 4 DSP and a 8 DSP version I could understand it.
Appart from this, it looks like an interesting products. I'd like to know how much they plan to charge for the Thunderbolt card.
Ok so the RME UFX looked interesting, now it doesn't. This is quite phenomenal...
This does look great. Especially being able to track thru Studer and other plugs. UA going to need rock solid drivers like RME and their version of "total mix" for near zero latency monitoring. Looks like a competitor not only for UFX but for Metric Halo too. UA's history with converters is great so that should not be an issue.
Hm, should be extremely interesting for most people - but using a 32-channel interface for live recording already, I was also hoping for a turbo satellite with more dsp AND thunderbolt.
I hope the unit is also usable as pure DSP accelerator (without the audio interface) because that way, I could get rid of my 2bus processing delay due to a minimum of 3 or 4 UAD plugs on the 2bus (UAD2 Satellite QUAD).
Ooops, the links don´t work - neigther the presskit nor the product page!
Enables Realtime UAD Powered Plug-Ins processing DSP mixer for realtime monitoring and tracking
Remote control of all Apollo features and functionality
Console Recall plug-in:
Saves Apollo configurations inside DAW sessions for easy recall
Enables control of all front panel parameters from within the DAW
VST, RTAS, and Audio Units plug-in format
The Console app can be used simultaneously with all major DAWs, including Pro Tools, Logic, Cubase, Live, Performer and more, giving you very flexible signal routing and processing options. And complete Console setups can be saved as presets — or even saved “within” your sessions using the VST/AU/RTAS-compatible Console Recall plug-in — for full recall, even months and years after you last opened your session.
Very interesting announcement! Great set of features, assuming the conversion is on par with the 2192. Definitely gonna give it some serious consideration when it's time to ditch the 002.
Between an on-board Duo and my Quad satellite, I'd be stoked. I've been considering adding an extra Duo for some time now, so from my perspective (when I subtract the price of the Duo), I'd be getting the interface for $1100. Not bad.
Yes, it's for a niche market, and might not be for everyone, but it fits my needs.
The Apollo 'Console' and 'Console Recall' applications are quite intriguing, anxious to see how it all works. Could this be laying the foundation for future analog summing emulations?