The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Converter test: 96io vs. MOTU 8pre
Old 2nd March 2011
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
metrognome's Avatar
 

Converter test: 96io vs. MOTU 8pre

I run a Pro Tools HD system at my studio with a 96io as the main interface, and a MOTU 8pre connected through lightpipe for channels 9-16. Before looking into upgrading from the 8pre to a unit with better A/D converters, I decided to do quick test to see how much worse the MOTU A/D converters really are compared to the 96io.

Included are WAV samples of the kick, snare, bass, and guitar from a session I did awhile back. There are 3 versions of each sample: one run through 96io conversion, one run through 8pre conversion, and one bussed internally to an audio track with no added conversion. All samples where sent out the D/A of the 96io.

This was definitely eye opening. Before I divulge my conclusion, I want to know what you guys think.

Listen away!
Attached Files

TEST96_Kick.wav (1.00 MB, 1478 views)

TEST8pre_Kick.wav (1.00 MB, 1430 views)

TESTNoConv_Kick.wav (1.00 MB, 1393 views)

TEST96_Snare.wav (2.36 MB, 1486 views)

TEST8pre_Snare.wav (2.36 MB, 1483 views)

TESTNoConv_Snare.wav (2.36 MB, 1412 views)

TEST96_Bass.wav (1.17 MB, 1405 views)

TEST8pre_Bass.wav (1.17 MB, 1451 views)

TESTNoConv_Bass.wav (1.17 MB, 1455 views)

Old 2nd March 2011
  #2
Gear Maniac
 
metrognome's Avatar
 

And the guitar...
Attached Files

TEST96_Gtr.wav (1.19 MB, 507 views)

TEST8pre_Gtr.wav (1.19 MB, 480 views)

TESTNoConv_Gtr.wav (1.19 MB, 475 views)

Old 3rd March 2011
  #3
Gear Maniac
 
metrognome's Avatar
 

So, what does everyone think?
Old 4th March 2011
  #4
Lives for gear
 
basmartin's Avatar
Well, I didn´t hear a lot of difference, other than on the bass, were it seems that the 96io doesn´t have the same amount of low end as the Motu and the non-converted file. The guitar sounded a tiny bit more nasal on the 96io. I would guess that the differences a heard between the bass files, also exist in the kick and snare files, but I couldn´t really hear it at the moment. Listened through AKG K271 mk II and having a cold...
Old 4th March 2011
  #5
+1 MOTU

I actually thought the top end on the MOTU sounded marginally better.

Surprising.

A.
Old 4th March 2011
  #6
Gear Maniac
 
metrognome's Avatar
 

Interesting observations! I definitely noticed the nasal effect of the 96io. The 96io does beat the MOTU on the low end response and clarity. The strangest thing I found was that the MOTU conversion seemed to increase the overall pitch of the source material ever so slightly. Am I crazy? I thought I was, but I took a break, came back, and STILL noticed this effect.

On a side note, if I post mp3s, will they show up in the post with a player that can be played from the browser instead of downloading the files?
Old 4th March 2011
  #7
Lives for gear
 
basmartin's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by metrognome View Post
Interesting observations! I definitely noticed the nasal effect of the 96io. The 96io does beat the MOTU on the low end response and clarity. The strangest thing I found was that the MOTU conversion seemed to increase the overall pitch of the source material ever so slightly. Am I crazy? I thought I was, but I took a break, came back, and STILL noticed this effect.

On a side note, if I post mp3s, will they show up in the post with a player that can be played from the browser instead of downloading the files?
Took another shot at the bass files today after a good nights rest, and I changed my mind, the 96io has as you say, more bottom and clarity. However, the guitar sounds the same. No difference in pitch though. If it is, it´s less then 0,2 hz at 500 hz, because that´s what this test tell me what I can hear: Adaptive Pitch: Measure your pitch perception abilities
Attached Thumbnails
Converter test: 96io vs. MOTU 8pre-bild-2.png  
Old 4th March 2011
  #8
Gear Maniac
 

Ok i've listened only to the guitar tracks.

Both are good enough to put on records BUT to me the 96I/O has more realism to it and it's not subtle.

Shows you that cheap MOTU gear when can have a use in pro studio for some things. In the Montreal region......they're everywhere.
Old 4th March 2011
  #9
Gear Maniac
 
metrognome's Avatar
 

Thanks for all the responses. Overall, the MOTU conversion isn't nearly as bad as I expected it to be. My hope was that it would be good enough to use as strictly a converter for my other outboard pres, with the gain turned way down. I think it more or less passed the test. Any thoughts on this? Anyone using an 8pre for just conversion? Instead of new converters, I may just get a master clock, like the BLA Microclock II, and see how (if) that improves the overall sound of both the 96 and MOTU.

By the way, if anyone wants to hear the final version of the song that these files are from, you can check it out here: http://www.robotenvy.net/listen

The song is "The Art Gallery" by The Rec Set
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Similar Threads
Thread
Thread Starter / Forum
Replies
OliverV / Gearslutz Secondhand Gear Classifieds
5
metrognome / Gearslutz Secondhand Gear Classifieds
16
Booda / So Much Gear, So Little Time
3
tigershark126 / So Much Gear, So Little Time
1
tnjazz / Gearslutz Secondhand Gear Classifieds
5

Forum Jump
Forum Jump