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Universal Audio External Audio Interfaces

Universal Audio
( 16 user reviews on products )

Subcategories of External Audio Interfaces Universal Audio products

Series Universal Audio

39 products23 news items3 reviews55 classified ads16 user reviews3 discussions

Reviews External Audio Interfaces Universal Audio


Universal Audio Apollo Twin MKII Review

Yet another step forward Three years ago Universal Audio introduced the Apollo Twin, a more friendly priced desktop version of their Apollo flagship audio interface. read more…

Universal Audio Apollo Twin Review

Twin Sound "It would be ideal if UAD offered a less expensive Apollo with only two mic preamps," we wrote in our review of the first Apollo almost two years ago, and also, "Given the choice of transparent-sounding preamps, it would be no surprise to find vintage preamp emulations in the future. Just wait and see." The time has come now to welcome the Apollo Twin read more…

Universal Audio Apollo Review

One Small Step for Men... Universal Audio is a brand like no other in the pro audio world. The company has been competing in the hardware market for over 50 years with preamps, compressors and channel strips. But it has also been present in the plug-in market for about a decade with the famous UAD DSP platform. We have always wondered what would happen if Universal Audio were to combine their analog and digital technologies. Introduced at the NAMM 2012, the Apollo is the first answer. Focus on the Universal Audio interface! read more…

User reviews on External Audio Interfaces Universal Audio products

a really great interface (Apollo 8 Duo)

By BernardRoland, 29/06/2016
I bought this interface 3 months ago after I had the opportunity to try many different audio interface models in several stores (mainly in Europe).

As the shope rarely had high-end monitors available, I compared all interfaces using mid-range, 2-way monitors.

Caution : I did not try the Appolo 8 but the previous model, since the Appolo 8 was only released later in May 2015.

Every try I gave it, the Appolo 8 provided superior sound quality and dynamics compared with other models.

I also compared it with much pricier interfaces, and either the difference was almost unnoticeable or the Appolo sounded better…

That’s how I initially made up my mind towards buying an “old” Appolo.

I then heard it through Eve Audio sc 408 monitors, and it sounded just sublime – clear, clean, noiseless, in a word: great.

On the day I was set to buy it, I’m mentioned the availability of the new Appolo 8.

So, I decided to buy it based on sound amelioration, added functionalities, the unison system available on several inputs and the better software.

I did not have an opportunity to compare both (old and new) models side by side.

The sound the Appolo 8 delivers is breathtaking, I believe it to be even clearer than earlier models but the difference seems rather small.

The interface is well-built, sturdy – very sturdy – , the controls are pleasant to use and the functionalities easy to read on the front.

It features an external power supply, which is a large block to be hidden under the table.

The possibility to use two different headphones for monitoring at the same time is a very good point.

Almost all functions can be set up directly from the software, which is awesome.

The unison feature is also very useful, no mic or instrument is perfect and corrections can be applied using this feature which is available on all inputs.

It doesn’t look like much but it’s possible from the input to set everything up so as to get a clean recording with a good basis, hence one that will need less tweaking later on.

Latency is minimal, impossible to perceive to me at least.

Noise level is also extremely low, much lower than any other interface.

It’s very important when recording solo instruments or classical music that features important volume variations.

Another huge asset is the possibility to use high-quality plug-ins within the interface.

Unfortunately they’re not free or cheap, but it just takes watching for special offers to get important discounts.

Considering the general price of interfaces and that of this model in particular, the price is not excessive. Don’t forget the (very useful) additional features that come with it such as the unison functionality and the possibility to work directly with plug-ins, which relieves your CPU.

A real gem! (Apollo Twin Duo USB)

By shiningdust, 22/04/2018
I use this sound interface to complement (not to say replace) my old ESI ESP 1010e. I went up in terms of range and it’s a real investment but believe me – it was worth it. Latency is ridiculously low, especially in direct monitoring. Using the Unison technology, which implies replacing the clear-sounding and modern (yet high-quality) interface pre by a Unison-compatible plugin (eg a Neve strip, vintage preamp, some guitar amps too), monitoring is still direct.

Unison allows to change the physical preamp’s behavioe using a plugin, which is an amazing technology.

The installing process was seamless, and the same goes for the plugins (the included bundle + a special offer which consisted in $749 worth of plugins + a $79 off coupon on an Helios EQ + those I purchased to take advantage of other special offers – seems like I bought it right on time :-) ).

Yet, there were audio problems with the sound dropping but it got resolved with changes within Windows and the use of a special PCI-e USB 3.0 card instead of the motherboard’s chipset (it seemed to work with a mere update, but you never know).
Thanks again to the UA tech support, they really know their job.

I work on an 17 5820K with 32GB of RAM. This leads me to a problem I’ve encountered: the plugins work on an internal DSP on the card, with a total only 2 DSPs as it’s a Twin model. Its capacity soon gets exceeded, which implies freezing the tracks, saving the settings and make clear decisions then to reset to the default mixer screen so as to empty the DSPs.

In native mode, I can use many mort plugins without saturating my Computer, so it’s a real pity that you can’t mix the DSP and PC’s power, as I could use many more UA plugins than I currently can (I sometimes have to use SE versions of the plugs on secondary tracks).

Lat alone that point, quality of the converters and preamps is incredibly good! Used with a nice microphone (a Neumann TLM 102 in my case), the result is exceptionally good, especially considering that the Unison allows to tweak the sound using channel strips, vintage preamps emulations and so on. But even then, the original preamp stands its case and is more than usable!

The mixer is both easy to use and very practical. A real asset!
Most parameters can be controlled both using the mouse or the interface’s controls.

I like:
+ the preamps’ overall quality
+ the Unison technology
+ the quality of the converters
+ the mixer
+ the possibility to record or not the effects in Cubase Pro 8.5 (or any other DAW)
+ the exceptional quality of the plug-ins (even superior to Waves in a way)

I like less:
- the DSP technology which causes more problems than it helps. It once was very practical (in the days of the UAD-1), but nowadays the processors are so powerful that the UAD-2 is surpassed and it’s a pity. It still can be useful for someone with a small setup, but it’s not my case.
- only two channels, making it impossible to record a guitar amp using three microphones
- a single headphone out, which is not practical to tweak the vocals while making it heard by both the singer and engineer
However, this interface is more aimed at home studio owners who work alone, and for that purpose it’s still a very fine interface.

I’d make the same choice a million times if necessary. I hesitated between this and an REM Fireface, well I’m glad to have entered Universal Audio’s universe!

When I can, I intend to buy a UAD-2 Octo (Satellite USB 3.0 or PCIe, depending on the better compatibility, I’ll see when I have the budget) in order to use more DSP power and take full advantage of all these wonderful plug-ins.

With such a high-quality interface, I’ll also have to invest in good microphones as the only really good mic that I have is the Neumann TLM 102 (I also own a lower quality condenser T-Bone, a ribbon T-Bone, an SM57 and an SM58).
But as I have already invested a lot, that will be for later…

If you can afford an interface in that price range, don’t hesitate and go ahead, you won’t be disappointed!

It’s also a pity that it is the only Apollo available for Windows system computers, i would have preferred an Apollo with more inputs and two headphone outs, and most important more included DSPs… But for 899€, you already have access to an exceptional quality! So let’s not demand too much, a 600€ interface with a lot of ins/out will never reach this one in terms of quality.

CAUTION: if you work on a laptop PC, there is a risk that it will not be compatible with the USB 3.0 chipset. Look up for yourself beforehand.

Edit: the interface is now even cheaper with the release of the Twin MKII, but you won’t get as many plug-ins as I got :-D

Since then, I’ve bought 2 UAD-2 Octo cards – one USB 3.0 Satellite and one internal PCI-e. I can tell you that I no longer have any problem to run as many plug-ins as I like now :bravo: (of course, there’s a world between 2 DSPs and 18...)

For the internal mixer, only the interface’s two DSPs can be used, but it seems well enough with only two inputs, unless you really have to use several plug-ins which is something I rarely – if ever – do. The Twin MKII and its Quad version are almost unnecessary, unless of course you want to use it for mixing (I speak for those who do not own additional UAD-2 cards).

Months later, i still consider it a great product!!! (and the problem with the audio signal which was dropping has almost vanished, except in very rare circumstances which are not even that much of a problem when it happens).
PS: I went to Cubase Pro 9 in the meantime (taking advantage of the grace preriod), and the software is even more stable than before, with crashes becoming rarer… I actually still have to face any, if I remember correctly.

News External Audio Interfaces Universal Audio

A USB 3.0 Apollo Twin Duo for Windows

Published on 09/15/15
Universal Audio announces the release in October of a new Apollo Twin Duo desktop audio interface with USB 3.0 connection, but for Windows only.

Forums External Audio Interfaces Universal Audio