Audio Interface advice please.....

For topics specifically about audio interfaces (USB, MFi, Camera Connection Kit)

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silent climb
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Audio Interface advice please.....

Post by silent climb » Sat Jun 29, 2013 4:18 am

Hi there,

I bought Auria a few days ago & have been playing with it ever since & i Wow!.........What a truly amazing DAW!

Thank you very, very much for creating Auria. As someone who only work's within mobile recording environments this DAW is a God send to me. It is truly mind boggling what has been achieved by the Auria development team. Respect!

I have an iPad 4 & have just been using the internal microphone whilst I've been experimenting with Auria so far, but it's become obvious very quickly that this is a seriously professional program that i can solely rely on for all my recording, mixing & mastering needs. I've already bought a load of additional plugins such as the FabFilter Pro Q & Pro C & the PSP Micro Warmer & Audiobus, Waldorf Nave & Sunrizer to name but a few................Now it's time to get serious & buy myself a decent audio interface that will do this fantastic program justice.

Having done my research based on the features that i need in an audio interface i have whittled it down to 3 contenders. I will list my contenders, the pros & cons of each & questions that i have in regards to each interface.........& this is where i would really appreciate your feedback, advice & opinions please........

Roland Capture Duo EX:-

Pro's:- Small, great connections / inputs & outputs, L & R stereo outs for studio monitor mixing, cable-less recording possible through battery power for a truly portable rig. Great price - Seems like a bargain for the features.

Con's:- The midi in & out is the 5 pin which doesn't match my Midi controller's USB midi out - This seems like it could prove to be a little bit of a hassle over time as i would have to unplug the audio interface & connect a lightning to USB adapter to the ipad whenever i need to record with the MIDI controller - Plugging/Unplugging stuff when ideally i'd like it all in within 1 unit. If my Midi Controller had the 5 pin Midi out then this interface would already have been purchased because it seems like such a good deal. Is there such a thing as a Midi USB out (the square style, not flat), to a MIDI 5 Pin in adapter? I know you can get an adapter for the other way round & with the flat USB style.

Apogee ONE:-

Pro's:- Apogee sound quality & construction, charges the iPad when plugged in - Brilliant feature. Can also take batteries for truly portable recording, the built in condenser mic is an awesome feature for me too, a real selling point - the option of quick & easy, cable-less, streamlined work flow on the go is a feature that really attracts me as it is one that enables creativity to be captured as soon as it arrives, allowing to strike whilst the iron is hot so to speak without hardly any setup preparations other than plugging the device in. The Maestro app is great too.

Con's:- No Midi connectivity at all & again, this for me would cause the same issue as the Roland - Plugging/Unplugging the interface & then connecting the Midi controller direct through an adapter - Not quite the seamless workflow that I'm aiming for. No L & R stereo out for connecting up to studio monitors - This to me seems like it could be quite a big deal but please tell me if I'm worrying needlessly, i mean, is there any way that the 1/8" headphone out can be connected up to a pair of studio monitors via the use of a Y lead that will retain the sound quality & not degrade it in any way? To me, the thought of going from a 1/8" headphone socket to a pair of studio monitors just paints an image of sound quality compromises along the signal path. Am i right in thinking this? I don't want to be restricted headphone mixes only.

Apogee Duet:-

Pro's:- Apogee sound quality & construction, charges the iPad when plugged in, has all of the connections I need within the one unit - L & R stereo out's for monitor mixing, Maestro software app.

Con's:- Doesn't take batteries for truly portable recording, Expensive, No inbuilt microphone.

So, to condense & clarify i guess my main questions are:-

(1) Whether there is a way of connecting my M-Audio Oxygen 25's Square USB out to the 5 pin MIDI in of the Roland Capture Duo EX?

(2) Whether a studio monitor mix is achievable via the 1/8" headphone output of the Apogee ONE that still retains all of the sonic integrity & quality that would be present in a headphone mix?

& I'll just throw this one in there.......(3) What would seem like the best interface for gigging purposes, using Auria projects as backing tracks played out via the interface output, over which guitar & singing & performed live?

Sorry for the rather long cry for help & if you've got this far then thank you very much for seeing this post through, i appreciate it. I would be very grateful for any personal experiences, advice &/or recommendations in regards to any of these listed interfaces from fellow Auria users. Thanks.

I'm chuffed to be a part of this amazing movement in pro audio. The future is Auria :D

Rampan
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Re: Audio Interface advice please.....

Post by Rampan » Sat Jun 29, 2013 10:09 pm

Hi there,
I was almost in the same situation and wanted the One, but since it was delayed I ended getting the Duet and I love it. I will try to convince you to get the duet as well, but I hope its price does not cause a problem.
Since you already know all the cons and pros I will give you my Duet biased opinion :-)

For the portability issue, unless you want to record short periods of times in remote areas or record birds in the jungle you'll always have a power source at hand, mind you not as practical, you can always get a portable usb power source for those lonely birds :-)

Yes the One has a great handy Mic but you can always get similar and much better quality if you connect external high quality condenser mics to the duet, could be matched stereo too, something you can't do with the one. If you just want to capture an idea then you can just use the ipad internal mic or even an iphone.

MIDI of course is a big plus for the Duet, that alone tipped it for me to go with the duet. You will have to connect your USB MIDI keyboard using a camera Kit and then you lose the ipad charging (big problem) and you need to monitor the sounds through the ipad earphone plug. not a pretty solution.

Recording a stereo line in source, is easily achieved with the Duet, Not too sure but could be tricky with the one, since you need to match a Mic gain with an instrument gain inputs.

If you are still not convinced... do you really want to listen to every thing through an 1/8" plug? the Y adapter idea is no go since on the One you actually need to select headphone out or studio out using Maestro, so its either you use headphones or studio monitors, on the Duet they are separate each with its own volume control and a robust 1/4" headphone plug.
For your live performance you can connect the studio out to the mixer, and use the headphones to check you have the good track.
I hope that helped, I know the Duet is expensive but I just justified its price for you, its worth it.
Good Luck

IPadArtist
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Re: Audio Interface advice please.....

Post by IPadArtist » Wed Jul 03, 2013 9:20 am

You can connect a USB midi keyboard to any of these units by using a usb hub. Simply plug the main CCK kit to the hub and any usb connected keyboard will trigger and the sound will be through the audio interface.

silent climb
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Re: Audio Interface advice please.....

Post by silent climb » Thu Jul 04, 2013 2:40 pm

Thanks for the replies guys & thank you Rampan for sharing your user experience & personal opinions. After much deliberation i have just purchased an Apogee Duet. It was the top end of the interfaces listed but it fits all of my needs & is no doubt fantastic, so you get what you pay for. I should be getting it delivered next week. Can't wait. Thanks :)

Phil999
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Re: Audio Interface advice please.....

Post by Phil999 » Fri Jul 05, 2013 4:34 am

surely a good purchase. I was in the same situation, thinking about a good solution (the Tascam iU2 I have was not reliable enough), and finally 'gave up' and bought the Apogee duet. For the first time I have 'good' or 'professional' converters now, and technically my recordings with the iPad will be better quality than with my DAW.

The duet is also well designed compared to other interfaces. When I was playing the flute (live monitored through Auria or Audulus, using their effects), I was able to operate the device with my toes while keeping my hands on the flute. I didn't think of that when I bought it, and I can imagine many other situations where I want to adjust a level, or switch the headphone out using only one finger (or toe).

So it's not only sound quality that makes the duet a good interface, it's also its design. And with a 'driver GUI' on the iPad which is quite unique (Maestro app). I think Mackie has something similar, and hopefully there will be more to come.

69strat
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Re: Audio Interface advice please.....

Post by 69strat » Sat Jul 06, 2013 9:24 am

Extremely satisfied Duet 2 user here, can't recommend it enough. Pricey but top notch. Just a note, to my knowledge, the apogee one does not have the Same converters as the duet.
From my research:
Duet 2 has the same electronics, mic pre amps and a/d/a converters as the Ensemble.
Also confirmed this when I bought the duet, it won't say it on their website but from what I could gather and in talking with the sales guy (trust his opinion) they are different. Depending on your application, you may not notice much of a difference. I trust Apogees stuff!
Good luck!

Erik dP
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Re: Audio Interface advice please.....

Post by Erik dP » Mon Jul 08, 2013 1:15 pm

I have Apogee One, the old model. Works without any problems. Usb-hub needed though. But I use a portable battery to run it. Garage Band is needed for input switching as Maestro doesn't support it.
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69strat
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Re: Audio Interface advice please.....

Post by 69strat » Sat Jul 13, 2013 1:44 pm

Erik dP wrote:I have Apogee One, the old model. Works without any problems. Usb-hub needed though. But I use a portable battery to run it. Garage Band is needed for input switching as Maestro doesn't support it.
Having some issues connecting a duet, mpk25 & FaderPort into a Belkin powered USB hub, then USB to lightening adapter to ipad 4. The duet cuts in and out. Is it possible that the input switching in GB could resolve this? Couldn't get maestro help, thanks,
Pete

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