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SSL Alphalink MADI AX

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX

4.1 4.1 out of 5, based on 5 Reviews

High quality 24-channel analog-madi-adat converter

30th January 2012

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX by fragletrollet

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 4
SSL Alphalink MADI AX

SSL is a well known brand in higher end studio audio products. The Alphalink series of converters bring high-count audio conversion in high quality at a lower price than most contenders.

This review is of the MADI AX version of the converter that comes with ADAT.

You can interface it through MADI (I use a SSL MX4 card, SSL have other MADI cards in the MADIXTREME series) or ADAT, and it has 24 channels of AD/DA conversion.

Samplerate is from 44,1 - 96,000kHz, 24 bit.

The converters front panel routing system is very easy to use, you will have it up and running in no time.

This was my first step into high-end conversion.
The audio quality is top notch. I could hear a definitive sense of clarity compared to the audio interfaces I worked with earlier (M-Audio Delta 1010LT, Focusrite Saffire, EMU 1616, Steinberg MR816, RME Fireface).
There is more transient detail in this converter compared to what I have worked with. The stereospread seemed somewhat wider.

I have not worked extensively with other high-end converters (I have auditioned some briefly), so I cannot compare with other products like Lynx, PT HD or Apogee.
Coupled with my Focal Twins, they give a scaringly realistic picture of what you are working with. Easy to get hung up in details while eq`ing or compessing etc

Only thing I could ask for, is that they would make the separate ADAT (Alphalink AX)/AES (Alphalink SX) versions as expansion cards rather than separate converters, so I wouldnt have to buy another set of converters to interface AES gear with the AX. Oh, and the midi port is of no use as of yet, and doesnt seems like is ever going to be supported by the drivers.

So all in all, I love it.

28th February 2012

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX by steveloree

SSL Alphalink MADI AX

In my project studio I recently installed a 48 channel D&R Merlin and was looking for a way to interface my DAW with the console. After much research and experimenting I settled on the SSl Alpha Link I/O AX version. The Ax version incorporates 24 channels of ADAT optical as well as the primary MADI format.
As a stand alone unit the Alpha Link is simple and easy to configure. I had it plugged into my old RME card via the ADAT optical and up and running in no time. The sound was big and I immediately noticed a tighter bottom end in the mix I had been working on.
Where the alpha link really shines is when it is used with the SSL MX4 card. The MX4 opens up routing possibilities that I had dreamed of for years. The MX4 mixer allows you to create your own mixer with custom routing to fit your studio set up. Latency while tracking becomes a thing of the past routing the input directly back to the console for monitoring. I was able to create individual headphone mixes by adding stereo sends to the input channels. I could monitor through SSL EQ and compression with or without tracking the effect.
On one extreme metal project I used ssl compression and eq to track with great punchy results. On a traditional roots recording I used the buss compressor during mix down and brought out some quiet notes without any complaints from the fussy mandolin player.
The Alpha Link M4X combination has allowed me to integrate my analog console completely with my DAW.
The learning curve on the routing was a bit steep but after a few minutes conversation with tech support I had it sorted out and it made perfect sense.
So, I installed another one.

  • 1
30th March 2012

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX by monoman76

SSL Alphalink MADI AX

In my studio i am running a motu sytem(2408 mk3,2408 mk2,1224, pci-e 424). I am still on the motu because i like the dsp card to make latenz free headphone mixes. But the motu converters are not that good to run outboard with it. So i needed better ones. I checked a lot like presonus, rme ....They were all ok but not wow ;-) Then i had the chance to test the SSL alpha link. For me i found the missing link between my outboard and my daw. The converters sound absolute great, a lot of channels and easy to use. The menu is a little bit tricky but its ok. I think for the money the best converters you can get. I think about buying a second one sometimes ;-)

13th April 2012

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX by Fredco1

SSL Alphalink MADI AX

I demo'd the SSL in my studio for 2 weeks. Kept going back and forth between SSL and another super high end set of converters. Had a few mixers come over and did some critical listening. SSL was very transparent and my mixes have been the best I've ever done. I was afraid that the SSL wouldn't be very good given the low price. I was wrong. It is amazing. Highly recommended. The perfect combo would be RME raydat or RME Madi + SSL Alpha Link.

19th April 2012

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX by MaartenT

SSL Alphalink MADI AX

When I upgraded my converters from a digi002+focusrite saffire 26i/o the differences were huge. Despite it's relatively low price it's right up there with apogee and lynx in terms of conversion quality. 24i/o of AD/DA and 24 i/o of ADAT is more than enough for me. Well maybe another alpha link will be showing up for some more channels on the console. It's addictive!
The build quality is solid and the metering is pretty useful. The only thing that's less straight forward is the way you select the routing of the analog+digital inputs to the outputs using the output knob. This is explained pretty well in the manual so the saying rtfm is in it's place here

14th September 2013

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX by CJordan

  • Sound Quality 5 out of 5
  • Ease of use 5 out of 5
  • Features 5 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 5
SSL Alphalink MADI AX

Throughout the years I have invested a lot of time and money into my home studio set up. A lot of purchases I have made have been good but I've either had to replace, upgrade or modify them for my set up to improve.

In order to bypass this I bought the SSL Alphalink Madi AX converter after doing a fair bit of research. Finally after I got round to hooking it up to my set up I really knew how pleased I was. My previous conversion was done via an M-Audio Profire 2626 which 'did the job'.

You can customise certain features to adapt to your workflow via the front panel which is easy to use when referring to the manual. Sample rate can be adjusted up to 96kHz which sounds even better!

Everything sounds so much clearer and open! It's like walking into Narnia and discovering a whole new world. I am currently using an RME Madi card to interface it with my MacBook Pro which also allows me to hook up my 24 channel mixing desk, DA converters/monitor controllers and integrate all of my hardware into a digital system which is great.

This unit allows you to expand up to 20x the amount any other interface can manage.

If you were in a position like I was and wanted a taste of professional then this is the product for you without paying the price for a ProTools HD setup.

Overall, this converter is a life changer and allows to just focus on the music.

  • 1
10th October 2013

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX by Filibeyer

  • Sound Quality 5 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 5 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 5 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.75
SSL Alphalink MADI AX

24 analog ins (db25)
24 analog outs (db25)
3 ports ADAT
Perfect to use with SSL MX4 card.

Sonic performance!

It is very dificult to configure the IO when we are using the ADAT optical ports. It's hard to change the analog IO ins to optical IO ins. But it is only the problem. The Alphalink convert is versatile !

18th April 2015

Solid State Logic XLogic Alpha-Link MADI AX by Alexfrbc2

  • Sound Quality 4 out of 5
  • Ease of use 2 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 1 out of 5
  • Overall: 2.75
SSL Alphalink MADI AX

There is a factory issue with these units, and SSL pretends like the problem doesn't exist. My unit i have to turn on and off between 1-100 times to make it make normal sound. Either i get distortion or white noise, and if i'm lucky - normal sound.

Search the forum, stay far away, it feels like SSL is trying to make money on the users misfortune with all the faulty units.

But WHEN it works, it's great. If there is a problem - have the big wallet ready.

  • 1
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