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Antelope Announces Zen Studio (complete interface solution) now shipping Audio Interfaces
Old 14th September 2014
  #391
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Clybourne View Post
Those were prototype samples. After consulting with customers and dealers, we opted for one color, red.

Kind Regards,
Marcel
You didn't consult with me because I would have told you that Black was the best .

When will all the software issues be sorted out? I had to buy an SPL Crimson to do a small project and it is actually quite incredible for £350. I'm still interested in a Zen Studio, but the Crimson is going to be permanently connected to my songwriting and critical listening station next to my bed!
Old 14th September 2014
  #392
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Man View Post
You didn't consult with me because I would have told you that Black was the best .

When will all the software issues be sorted out? I had to buy an SPL Crimson to do a small project and it is actually quite incredible for £350. I'm still interested in a Zen Studio, but the Crimson is going to be permanently connected to my songwriting and critical listening station next to my bed!
I use the Zen everyday. It has no software issues for me. Only, some things that can be further refined. There's one update with some refinements that should show up very soon and another a few weeks after that. These are cosmetic can minor workflow improvements, but the unit works fine and would be my desert island interface beyond the shadow of a doubt.

Kind Regards,
Marcel
Old 14th September 2014
  #393
Lives for gear
 
Solar's Avatar
 

@Clybourne

I don't want to play the bad advocate here as I purchased the Zen Unit (by the I'm on Win 7 x64) but I believe that when @Blueman is talking about Software issues, he is mostly meaning about Drivers stabilities and enhancements or maybe i'm wrong. And it's true, if we're talking about Software = Control Panel. There's no issues. The ContrlP software works great but indeed need refinements, enhanced features and of course add-ons such us the famous Reverb etc.. etc..
As for the Drivers, well there's issues and I can confirm it for a Win user about: Asio buffer size and USB Streaming MODE. And since I bought the Unit, been in touch with Antelope Team department sharing with them all issues I've been and still experiencing (almost been spending my last 2 weeks troubleshooting because I always get into something that pop ups) and I hope that this coming UDPATEwill fix most major issues i'm living.
So when i'm reading that it's ONLY MINOR refinement Mr Marcel, on my end I don't call the issues i'm having MINORbecause I can not (since I bought) just fire up the UNit enjoy and make music. In order for me to work and have a great session without FUZZ, I need switch to my OLD RME Hammerfall and get a session rolling... you can ask Andrey @antelope who's been of a good support so far and I think he's the one so far who've hold me not to switch to the RME FF802 . And I just ditched 3$K by the way and it's not about the money but still when you pay something in that price range & up, you're expectations are in that price range too right?

And also I can understand, that some are not having any issues at all because thats how technology works, sometimes two people can buy the same unit and everything works like a charm or the two person do experience the same issue or one do and one don't.

And a second reason I still do have the unit at my place is because it SOUND GREEEEAAAT and yes me too The ZEN would be my desert island interface beyond the shadow of a doubt WHEN I'll see the issues Fixed soon and enhancement happens soon too ;-)

Still staying positive here and I believe Antelope Team need to hurry, be pro-active with this UNIT because this Unit is the one that can go and is dedicated to a wide range of users otherwise if taking too long, the first believers of this unit like me, will look away ;-) Hope won't have to get there

Best ;-)
Old 19th September 2014
  #394
Recording Magazine Zen Review

An excellent Zen Studio review in the new October issue of Recording Magazine!

A couple quotes from the review by Paul Vnuk Jr.

In use: setup and converters
"I tested the Zen Studio on both my 2.5 Ghz quad-core i 7 late 2011 17" MacBook Pro and my 3.5 Ghz quad-core i7 iMac, both running OCX 10.9 and setup was fast and simple with nary a hiccup. Originally with the Orion32 I had some issues with Cubase 7, but I'm pleased to say that the Zen Studio has been running flawlessly for the past few months in Cubase 7.5 with zero issues. I am even able to track at a buffer setting of 32 samples (!) on my iMac."

In use: preamps
"There have been a lot of claims made about the Zen Studio's mic pres online-- some saying that they sound "API-ish", others saying Neve-ish, and overall besting microphone preamps that on their own cost as much per channel as the entire Zen Studio. I so wanted to be be the person to debunk their quality and cry foul, but I'll be damned if these preamps didn't impress the heck out of me!"

Old 3rd October 2014
  #395
Zen Rack Kit

This is the new Zen Rack Kit option. It will ship in about one month and will list for $79. It holds the Zen Studio in place w/o the need for removing screws. It includes a vented panel for sufficiently ventilating the unit, which was engineered to be optimized for mobile use. So you can simply remove the unit from the rack kit when you need to take the Zen out on a gig.

Old 3rd October 2014
  #396
Here for the gear
 

[QUOTE=Clybourne;10453154]This is the new Zen Rack Kit option. It will ship in about one month and will list for $79. It holds the Zen Studio in place w/o the need for removing screws. It includes a vented panel for sufficiently ventilating the unit, which was engineered to be optimized for mobile use. So you can simply remove the unit from the rack kit when you need to take the Zen out on a gig.

Now you can all stop complaining about the lack of rackmount options. They (Antelope) seem pretty awesome about listening to their customers! This is on my list and WILL be purchased in the near future. An apparently great product, and a great team willing to help. Thats awesome!
Old 3rd October 2014
  #397
I'll tell you what, the fact that y'all listened and made a rack kit for the Zen has completely sold me on Antelope and the Zen. I am currently rack mounted and I really didn't want to have to change my set up so I was looking at getting a UFX instead even though I really wanted the Zen.

Just wanted to post that it's really encouraging to see a company that listens to what its customers ask for and you've sold me on your unit because of it. I'll be ordering one before the year is out.
Old 4th October 2014
  #398
Here for the gear
 

Smile

This was on my list just for the sound of it...now i'm completely sold. Going to get one asap.
Old 8th October 2014
  #399
We just posted a video of the upcoming Zen Protective Bag, which we will also show at AES this weekend.

Old 8th October 2014
  #400
I'm assuming the new rack kit option still allows the use of the ADAT ports? Or is it too tight at that point?
Old 8th October 2014
  #401
Gear Addict
 
mauvehead's Avatar
 

After seeing the new (Thunderbolt2) Apogee Ensemble debut, I must say that I'm very glad that I decided to pull the trigger on the Zen when I did. I was coming from the Apogee Quartet and liked it well enough, but when I started to need more I/O the Quartet just couldn't do what I needed anymore. I had been drooling over a Symphony 8x8+8MP set-up but $4500 (plus eventually another $500 for the ThunderBridge) was daunting for me, especially as I have been wanting to grab more outboard pres (mainly for color). So I followed my gut and held off on the Symphony rig, at least until it made more sense financially for what I needed. And the other assumption I made about the Symphony was that I could use the Apogee mic pres as main pres when color wasn't needed for a particular track.

So here's where I'm extra glad that I bought the Zen earlier this summer. Had the new Apogee Ensemble been available at the time when I bought the Zen, I probably would've bought the Ensemble instead. For what I was needing as far as I/O goes, the Ensemble would've been a step in the right direction, plus it is half the cost of my (then) dream Symphony rig, plus I was already familiar and comfortable with the Apogee 'sound' and the Apogee mic pres because of the Quartet. And the new Ensemble is the same price as the Zen. At the time it would've been a no-brainer for me to stick with Apogee...

But here's the deal...The Zen sounds significantly better than the Apogee. Here I was worried that the Zen's pres might be slightly sub-par with the Apogee pres but it has actually proven to be the opposite case. Once I bought the Zen and did some serious listening, the Apogee pres definitely sounded more 'digital' when compared to the Zen's pres. I'm not saying that the Apogee's pres sound bad...they don't actually. But when up against the Zen, the Apogee pres fall short.

Then there's the glaring issue of how the Apogee AD/DA convertors sound in comparison to the Zen. The Zen 'sound' kills the Apogee 'sound' in every way IMHO and I when I first fired up the Zen and started listening to stuff, I had a ton of those cliché moments where I heard things in familiar recordings that I had 'never heard before'. That happened a bunch (and still does)...

So in a sense, the Zen came along at just the right time where my need for more I/O outweighed the risk (in my mind) of stepping down in quality from the Apogee's pres to the Antelope's pres. Fortunately, I took the plunge for the Zen when I did and ended up with what I feel is the better solution on all counts. This isn't a knock against Apogee so much as it is an ongoing comparison of Antelope and Apogee from my own experiences. Back when I was weighing out the pros and cons of ditching the Quartet and grabbing a Zen, I had a hard time finding any direct comparisons from real users as the Zen was simply too new for anyone to have an opinion about yet. That has changed now and I must say that I am very glad to have made the Apogee-to-Antelope switch. The Antelope Zen really is 'all that' that people are saying. Money very well spent...
Old 11th October 2014
  #402
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scorpix74's Avatar
I've been interested since the announce but I just have no idea how good are these pre.
Old 16th October 2014
  #403
I found this video interesting, as he's using the Zen Studio in this demo AND monitoring live through Pro Tools, with no noticeable latency.

Old 22nd October 2014
  #404
In the current Control Panel version the Phase Invert has been added and now functions as it was meant to (icon below 48V phantom). You don't have to do anything but run the Zen Control Panel Launcher and it automatically updates.

You will need to update firmware, which the Control Panel will prompt you to do. When you plug the unit back in after updating firmware, hold the up and down arrows when plugging in the unit and the Factory Reset will be applied. Or you can hold the power button and select Factory Reset with the up/down arrows, hold down arrow to apply Reset and press the up arrow to escape.

This is all easier than it may sound. I'm just trying to look out for those of you who may pop by this thread for guidance.

Old 22nd October 2014
  #405
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Solar's Avatar
 

Grear from you @Clybourne to share these infos :-) Keep those updates and features coming :-) Awaiting impatiently for that Reverb DSP. Loving the Zen Studio here ;-)
Old 22nd October 2014
  #406
Gear Addict
 
mauvehead's Avatar
 

Ditto to what Solar said...

Also anxiously awaiting (hoping to see) resizable Control Panel Screen...and those sexy virtual VU Meters that the MP32 and Pure2 got with their GUI's.

And v1.31 seems to be solid from my end on...
Old 23rd October 2014
  #407
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Solar's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mauvehead View Post
Ditto to what Solar said...

Also anxiously awaiting (hoping to see) resizable Control Panel Screen...and those sexy virtual VU Meters that the MP32 and Pure2 got with their GUI's.

And v1.31 seems to be solid from my end on...
Same here 1.31 seems so far rock solid on my side too. I'll be giving it more test drive tomorrow but so far, I'm loving how Antelope are coming up with their udpates.

Also agree with resizable CTRLP and those Vu meter GUIs and also a better diagram showing up where things are connected in the Routing section :-)
Old 6th November 2014
  #408
The latest all Zen Studio live recording.

On drums, Chris Johnson (Stevie Wonder, Seal, Rihanna), Guitar, Michael "Fish" Herring (Prince, Nas, Mariah Carey), Bass, Courtney Leonard (Ariana Grande, SoMo, Chris Brown), Keyboards, Tim Carmon (Eric Clapton, Beyoncé, Boney James).

Old 7th November 2014
  #409
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mauvehead View Post
But here's the deal...The Zen sounds significantly better than the Apogee.

Then there's the glaring issue of how the Apogee AD/DA convertors sound in comparison to the Zen. The Zen 'sound' kills the Apogee 'sound' in every way
I'm fascinated that you had a chance to compare the Zen Studio and Ensemble Thunderbolt considering that the Ensemble just started to ship like two days ago.



"I'm not going to buy a Mustang because I had a Taurus and it was just OK."


Sound logic!
Old 7th November 2014
  #410
Gear Addict
 
Night Stalker's Avatar
 

latency stats

Are there any published stats for latency on a mac with low buffer settings. I'd like to compare them with the new ensemble 2.
Old 10th November 2014
  #411
Zen Rack Kit

Old 10th November 2014
  #412
Gear Addict
 
Grasshopper11's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgiL View Post
Nice, Are these now available?
I definitely want one for my Zen
Old 10th November 2014
  #413
Quote:
Originally Posted by M.Brew View Post
Nice, Are these now available?
I definitely want one for my Zen
Last I was told they would start shipping this week. Sweetwater is the first dealer I'm aware of to order some, but I'm sure others will follow.
Old 13th November 2014
  #414
10db pad added to Zen

You can now get an extra 10db on the mic pre's by turning the gain down from 10 to 0. This update happens automatically when you launch the Control Panel.

Old 13th November 2014
  #415
Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Diamond View Post
I'm fascinated that you had a chance to compare the Zen Studio and Ensemble Thunderbolt considering that the Ensemble just started to ship like two days ago.
I received mine on Nov 6. Sounds great, but the talkback mic has some weird noise issues. Not really a problem because I won't use that, will use the one in my monitor controller instead.

I don't have a Zen to compare it to though.
Old 13th November 2014
  #416
Deleted User
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jweisbin View Post
Sounds great
My point exactly. "Sounds great" applies to both interfaces in question as well as a slew of others.
Old 18th November 2014
  #417
Battery Powered Mobile Recording Rig

Here's a way to have a 24-Channel Recording Rig using battery power (Zen runs for nearly 6 hours).

Items required.

Zen Studio
•*iPhone 5 (or higher)
Lightning to USB Camera Connection Kit
Goal Zero Sherpa 100 (mobile battery power, includes cable to connect to Zen)
• Up to 12 microphones (4 DI's) can all be powered easily

Old 18th November 2014
  #418
Gear Addict
 
mauvehead's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Diamond View Post
I'm fascinated that you had a chance to compare the Zen Studio and Ensemble Thunderbolt considering that the Ensemble just started to ship like two days ago.



"I'm not going to buy a Mustang because I had a Taurus and it was just OK."


Sound logic!
Wow...Tough crowd.

My comments were comparing the Zen to the typical Apogee 'sound'. And Apogee's do have a certain common 'sound'....especially the newer units: Duet2, Quartet, and Symphony units...all of which the new *Thunderbolt Ensemble derives its sonic lineage, yes? Anybody who has worked with various makes and models of convertors will confirm that each 'brand' brings its own unique personality to the table. Apogee's have a tendency to be borderline harsh/digital/clinical on the top-end and they also have a little extra push in the upper-lows/lower-mids. That being said, Apogees are easy to mix with so long as those 'personality traits' are taken into account. YMMV

The Zen on the other hand is smooth across the spectrum. The lows are very tight/solid/'there' but un-hyped and the top-end is stunningly detailed and yet smooth and non-tiring. In comparison to the 'Apogee sound', the Zen just seems more accurate as well as less fatiguing when working long hours on mixdowns and critical listening sessions. And thus far I have not heard anything coming from the Zen that needed to be compensated for or worked around in order to ensure mixes will translate accordingly on other systems, listening environments, etc.

And I guess since I've logged in more hours than I can count on both the newer Apogee stuff and the Zen I figure my comparisons between the two are informed, fair, objective and accurate. If the 'Apogee sound' was better for me then I'd say as much. But that's just my logic.

So just to recap, my original comments were saying that I'm glad I moved away from the 'Apogee sound' and that I made to jump over to the Antelope camp. Had the new Ensemble debuted prior to the Zen then I would've likely stuck with what I was already accustomed to (i.e. the 'Apogee sound'). But as it so happened, the Zen came out at just the right time where I was willing to take a gamble and try out something new and unfamiliar to me. No regrets.

*Admittedly I have not heard or worked with the new Ensemble. But I guess that makes us even as you have most likely not worked with the Zen...

BTW, I thought you might enjoy a cool snapshot of my Mustang taken from a few months ago. I'd take a pic of me driving a Taurus but I've never actually owned one. YMMV

Old 20th November 2014
  #419
Here for the gear
 

Before I pull the plug on a 2500 unit I'd love to hear some more real world tests/songs. The current videos Antelope has posted do not in anyway impress me...yet.
I understand its still very early for most engineers to have finished a full band song/any song for that matter. But I'd still love to see and hear some more videos/audio of the unit being used!
Old 20th November 2014
  #420
Quote:
Originally Posted by Davidiliyn View Post
Before I pull the plug on a 2500 unit I'd love to hear some more real world tests/songs. The current videos Antelope has posted do not in anyway impress me...yet.
I understand its still very early for most engineers to have finished a full band song/any song for that matter. But I'd still love to see and hear some more videos/audio of the unit being used!
We've certainly been sharing some good stuff. I'm sorry you have been impressed with them. Frankly, this one's been getting some great comments from people I look up to and the engineer who worked on it has 4 Grammy's and was floored with the results!

Regards,
Marcel

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