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Worlds First - Multi channel bus powered THUNDERBOLT! Audio Interfaces
Old 28th July 2014
  #1
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Jason@SynthaxUK's Avatar
 

Worlds First - 4 Channel bus powered THUNDERBOLT!

The worlds first bus powered multichannel THUNDERBOLT interface has landed in the UK!

Overview — Resident Audio

It sounds great and is built like a tank too!

Costs around £400 inc VAT

Available from stockists now!

Synthax UK Dealer list | Synthax Audio

Last edited by [email protected]; 28th July 2014 at 05:16 PM.. Reason: Hit Enter far too early
Old 28th July 2014
  #2
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Isn't the audient ID22 bus powered as well unless you need phantom power?
Aren't the apollo's bus powered as well unless you need phantom as well?
Also how about the symphony io and the lynx hilo?

Don't mean to disrepect anyone, I'm just drunk and I remember bits of stuff here and there.
Old 29th July 2014
  #3
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I think you are missing the point.

This is the first interface to offer 4 (and phantom power) in and 4 out, bus powered via Thunderbolt.
Old 29th July 2014
  #4
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Alright, I checked.

The "Worlds First - Multi channel bus powered THUNDERBOLT!" interface is the Zoom TAC-2.

This here is the first one with more than two input channels.

Again, I don't want to disrespect anyone and anything, just to clarify for people who, like me, are skeptical about that kinda merketing policies.
Old 29th July 2014
  #5
Registered User
Is this a good thing? Is there enough power from the bus to do a good job of the audio? I'm guessing this rules out any Class A stuff that tends to need a lot of current ...

So apart from this feature - does it sound ok?
Old 29th July 2014
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi View Post
Is this a good thing? Is there enough power from the bus to do a good job of the audio??
It depends on the bus.
If it's USB, not really.
If it's thunderbolt, depending on the controller you can get more than 100w @ 18v.
Old 29th July 2014
  #7
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It lists 48v phantom power in it's specs but how does it acheive this via Thunderbolt buss power only? The other Thunderbolt options that work under buss power only have at best 18v for phantom power (within the 12v to 48v range to technically be called phantom) which can be a problem.
Old 30th July 2014
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bassmankr View Post
It lists 48v phantom power in it's specs but how does it acheive this via Thunderbolt buss power only?
The current used in phantom power is low as hell, almost negligible.
It's just a matter of bringing the tension up to 48v, which is easily doable with pretty cheap and pretty small trannies if the current's that low.
Old 30th July 2014
  #9
Registered User
It's more the current requirements of the preamps I was thinking about ... a huge part of the cost and expense of good preamps is the power supply, especially if Class A circuits are used to remove crossover distortion. Cheap IC preamps don't need as much current.

Looks like Thunderbolt has enough power to go around. But my point is, i'm more interested in how it sounds and how noisy it is. Zoom can make some nasty cheap dodgy stuff, but sometimes they makes some truly excellent products ... time will tell.
Old 30th July 2014
  #10
Registered User
oops - it's not a Zoom product. Who said Zoom and why?

I should have clicked on the link - Overview — Resident Audio They even mention that the 10W of power (who said 100W?) and that this allowed them to use decent preamp circuits ...

This has got my attention ... I'll be needing a Thunderbolt interface soon ...
Old 30th July 2014
  #11
TZk
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Old 31st July 2014
  #12
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Jason@SynthaxUK's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bassmankr View Post
It lists 48v phantom power in it's specs but how does it acheive this via Thunderbolt buss power only? The other Thunderbolt options that work under buss power only have at best 18v for phantom power (within the 12v to 48v range to technically be called phantom) which can be a problem.
I emailed the designer about your question. He has conformed that the T4 does provide 48v phantom power across all 4 mic preamps, many others do provide a lower voltage, just not this particular unit
Old 31st July 2014
  #13
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what is the minimum latency at each sample rate?
Old 31st July 2014
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi View Post
oops - it's not a Zoom product. Who said Zoom and why?
I mentioned zoom, 'cause it was them to make the first bus powered thunderbolt audio interface, even though this thread's title suggests otherwise...
Old 31st July 2014
  #15
Kind of some bad info on the web site. For one, Thunderbolt is not "faster" than USB2/3 unless we are talking latency. It can move more information at once, but that is not really an issue with only a handful of channels. USB2 can handle 10 times as many channels as this interface has with no problems.

The only benefit I can see to Thunderbolt is buss power. USB2 is rather under-powered for audio purposes. USB3 and Thunderbolt can achieve much better results in this department resulting in quieter, higher performing preamps and analog circuits. But really, all other things being equal, USB2 plus a plug could theoretically outperform it in terms of audio quality.
Old 2nd August 2014
  #16
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Really impressive latency specs. In Mainstage 3 on a 2013 Macbook Pro I'm getting:

96 Khz sampling rate
32 buffer - 0.8ms round trip
64 buffer - 1.7ms
128 buffer - 3.0ms

44.1 Khz sampling rate
32 buffer - 1.8ms round trip
64 buffer - 3.6ms
128 buffer - 6.5ms

It's the first time I've felt that playing an instrument through a laptop (with native effects) was responsive enough for live performance.
Old 3rd August 2014
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rumleymusic View Post
But really, all other things being equal, USB2 plus a plug could theoretically outperform it in terms of audio quality.
Now what do you exactly mean by this?
Would the 1s and 0s passing through USB cables be warmer or more accurate than the 1s and 0s passing through thunderbolt cables?
Old 3rd August 2014
  #18
Is there any way this could work with an iPad? 4 channels would certainly tempt me away from the Babyface option.
Old 4th August 2014
  #19
Quote:
Would the 1s and 0s passing through USB cables be warmer or more accurate than the 1s and 0s passing through thunderbolt cables?
No, I'm saying the analog components would perform better with a standard power supply rather than with buss power. The data cable is irrelevant.
Old 6th August 2014
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rpmartino View Post
Really impressive latency specs. In Mainstage 3 on a 2013 Macbook Pro I'm getting:

96 Khz sampling rate
32 buffer - 0.8ms round trip
64 buffer - 1.7ms
128 buffer - 3.0ms

44.1 Khz sampling rate
32 buffer - 1.8ms round trip
64 buffer - 3.6ms
128 buffer - 6.5ms

It's the first time I've felt that playing an instrument through a laptop (with native effects) was responsive enough for live performance.
RME have these specs for decade by now...too bad you did not tried it before.
Old 10th August 2014
  #21
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^ I was thinking the same thing...
Old 11th August 2014
  #22
GnS
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bassmankr View Post
It lists 48v phantom power in it's specs but how does it acheive this via Thunderbolt buss power only?
DC-to-DC converter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Old 14th August 2014
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpod View Post
RME have these specs for decade by now...too bad you did not tried it before.
I know RME has a great reputation for low latency and quality but the price was somewhat prohibitive... I searched quite a bit for latency specs and never saw anything quite this low before. If anyone is getting under 2 - 3ms roundtrip latency on something like an RME Babyface or Fireface UC without pops/clicks I'd be interested to know if it's possible.
Old 3rd September 2014
  #24
Here for the gear
 

This Resident Audio T4 looks appealing, and I'm not surprised the round-trip latency values are low.

I just got a Zoom TAC-2 and have done multiple round-trip audio tests, by routing a recorded click to an output, and re-recording it on another track, and comparing the time offset. I've used both Reaper and Logic for this, but Reaper is handier.

Anyway, here are the round-trip audio latencies I've measured with the TAC-2:

32 sample buffer: 3.3 ms, at 44.1kHz.
64 sample buffer: 4.4 ms at 44.1 kHz.

It would be lower with higher sample rates.

This is outstanding performance compared to USB boxes. From what I can gauge, it's better than RME's USB or Firewire offerings.

On my Macbook Air 2012 i5 1.7 GHz, I was able to use 15 instances of Amplitube 3 (set to a simple Fenderish-amp, no extra pedals or racks enabled) before I got any pops or crackles, with a buffer setting of 32 samples.

Most importantly, the feel while monitoring through software was akin to monitoring directly - like playing through a mic'd up amp. No noticeable latency at all, and I'm extremely finicky about lag.

I'm very impressed with this Zoom interface and was ready to write off Thunderbolt. Of course Thunderbolt may yet go the way of Firewire. Peripherals are expensive, and the cables are expensive ($40 for a 6 foot cable??). But at least for the time being, Thunderbolt audio interfaces seem to be offer great benefits. Aside from low latency, there is ample power for phantom just from bus-powering, and plenty of headphone output.
Old 5th September 2014
  #25
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I just got one (first-ish in the US, maybe?, as mine came from Juno in UK, fast!)

It's The Total Freakin' BOMB.

FASTER than my MOTU 828x, re latency: barely noticeable with a 512 buffer (running through The Brilliant BitWig Studio!)

Sounds GREAT (preamp wise)...

The perfect Animal for me, a mobile fellow, bus-powered, 4 ins allows me to run my iPad in to a pair, and mic and guitar in the others.

Totally works.

I was rather nervous it wouldn't, but....! Yay!
Old 5th September 2014
  #26
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I was right on thunderbolt at first but now its a tota why bother. With Metric Halo and what theyve been able to do with USB2 is astounding.
THe only good thing about thunderbolt is that it can be whatever bus you want it to be. Ive used it for video, firewire and Ive run out of USB ports so Im going to get a Thunderbolt to USB2 adaptor and a big hub. Kinda nifty
Old 9th December 2014
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanceHer View Post
I just got one (first-ish in the US, maybe?, as mine came from Juno in UK, fast!)

It's The Total Freakin' BOMB.

FASTER than my MOTU 828x, re latency: barely noticeable with a 512 buffer (running through The Brilliant BitWig Studio!)

Sounds GREAT (preamp wise)...

The perfect Animal for me, a mobile fellow, bus-powered, 4 ins allows me to run my iPad in to a pair, and mic and guitar in the others.

Totally works.

I was rather nervous it wouldn't, but....! Yay!
Hey Danceher (or anyone else in the know)... can you clear up some conflicting reports i've been reading about this box. Apparently the output routing options are very limited. I'd need to be sending out a stereo mix from outputs 1 & 2, a hi hat track on 3 and a vocal on output four... all from ableton (but I guess the daw isn't entirely relevant). so basically, the main question is can I send out separate mono outputs on 3 and 4?

Cheers in advance for the info.
Old 21st March 2015
  #28
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rpmartino View Post
I know RME has a great reputation for low latency and quality but the price was somewhat prohibitive... I searched quite a bit for latency specs and never saw anything quite this low before. If anyone is getting under 2 - 3ms roundtrip latency on something like an RME Babyface or Fireface UC without pops/clicks I'd be interested to know if it's possible.
The Babyface, sadly, is not nearly as fast as this or the Zoom TAC-2R seem to be. I get 4,60 / 6,05ms at 32 / 64 samples buffer in Ableton, which is my software for live shows. Looking for a replacement actually, the Zoom seems to fit the bill (don't need the additional channels of the Resident T4 and prefer something smaller).
Old 21st March 2015
  #29
Gear Head
 

... btw, I strongly suspect that "Resident Audio" is just a sub-brand of Zoom for the western markets. There's a smaller version of the T4 called T2, which has exactly the same features as the Zoom TAC-2R and a suspiciously similar info text.

Other than that - I don't like their advertising style, all that hyperbole. And some dead driver links on their homepage aren't too assuring either. Anybody found audio quality measurements yet? I'm curious if it shows exactly the same frequency response that some reviews complained about with the TAC. I posted this in the Zoom thread already: supposedly there's a 500Hz bump and a drop in bass below 100Hz.
Old 22nd March 2015
  #30
Gear Maniac
 

Yup, I believe they are related to Zoom and clicking the windows link gives you a dead page.
Having messaged a supplier of their stuff the T10 which interestingly has 2 thunderbolt ports will be available this summer.
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