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Author Topic: Good quality converters for MBOX?  (Read 3944 times)

antti

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Good quality converters for MBOX?
« on: January 04, 2005, 10:28:23 am »

Hello & greetings from London, UK.

Btw. this is my first message to this forum so be patient, thanks. Ok..
I have an Apple Ibook (G4/933Mhz) running ProTools Le with MBOX as
my audio interface. I am happy with Le as 32 tracks is fine for most what
I do and 2 in/out is fine too as I mostly do overdubs through the MBOX anyway
(gtrs/keys/vox mainly). My only problem is the ad and da converters of the
MBOX as they sound very thinny. So many times I've done a rough mix with my
system and then afterwards run the same mix or stems through Apogee ad8000 or Digi 192 with a massive difference. More depth, much fuller sound in terms of frequencies and more dynamic too. Money talks... for sure.

Can't afford a 'big' tools rig so.. I wonder whether it would make to sense to buy an Apogee 2 channel ada converter and connect it to my MBOX via spdif ports (also use Apogee as digital clock master)? Or maybe use something like Eventide Eclipse's converters or anything else that sounds better than the MBOX? The only downside might be a problem with latency? Someone must have done or at least tried this? Please, let me know what do you think. Thanks
a lot,


Antti  
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James Duncan

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2005, 09:08:39 am »

If you go out of a converter through your Mbox via S/PDIF, you will not notice any increase in latency.

There are so many converters at all different price ranges. Help us out here with a budget.

Also, if you go with stand-alone conveters, you will still need some mic pres, which you don't mention in your original post. What will you be using as pres?

good luck!
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James Duncan

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Napoleon Bonaparte

Neeko

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2005, 01:21:29 am »

I think the poster meant that he would be getting the Apogee Mini Me which already has two preamps. I'm interested to know if anyone has tried this or something similar because I am thinking about doing the same. Any info would be appreciated.

Thanks
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James Duncan

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2005, 09:02:26 am »

Neeko wrote on Thu, 27 January 2005 01:21

I think the poster meant that he would be getting the Apogee Mini Me which already has two preamps. I'm interested to know if anyone has tried this or something similar because I am thinking about doing the same. Any info would be appreciated.

Thanks


Well, he did't say anything about the Mini Me, and Apogee makes several different 2-channel A/D's, so I made no assumtions.

If he was going to use the Mini-Me, then he would be all set with mic pres and converters. It is certainly going to be an improvement over the stock MBox stuff.

Should work just fine!
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James Duncan

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antti

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2005, 11:16:18 am »

Thanks for your replies guys!

I'm still searching for the best
solution for my needs. Mini Me would be ok though
it's only a to d. Then again it might a good pair with
Benchmark DAC1. Rosetta 200 might be a good
choice, or Universal Audio or Lavry. Interested in Benchmark
A to D too.. whenever it'll be available.

Also, I'm not sure about
Mini Me's pres. I would like to get Sytek 4ch Pre as it seems
quite versatile and very good value for money. I use
ribbon mics a lot and I need a pre that has lots of gain without
too much noise. Would be nice to have 4 'quality' pres as
sometimes I like to buss several sources to stereo (or mono).
I have a mixer(Soundcraft FX16) to do the 'bussing' and a couple of tube
compressors too (ADL & custom Sta-Level) to 'colour' my chain.

I use my portable set up for mixing ITB, doing overdubs, programming,
location recording & doing some minimal drum recording (yes, 2
channels is enough).

Any other converter/pre combinations guys? I work 24bit/44.1kHz. In an ideal world I would get Prism converters & Gml 8304. Unfortunately my budget won't reach that far.
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hargerst

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2005, 02:36:23 pm »

Fletcher turned me on to the Lucid AD2496, which seems to be very good, and a step up from a lot of others, at a reasonable price.
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Harvey "Is that the right note?" Gerst
Indian Trail Recording Studio

antti

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2005, 01:53:29 pm »

Thanks for your replies!

Ok, I'll wait for the Benchmark ADC-1 and see
what people will think about it. Seems like
a very good unit in terms of specs and versatility.
The Mini-Me looks good as well but it hasn't got
inserts after pre-amps which makes it a little limited
for me (I want to be able to insert my comps after
pres) and the converters (spec-wise at least) are not
as good as Benchmark's. Also, the inserts
in the ADC-1 will give me opportunity to route
post pre-amp signals to my console where I can
buss them with other mics (let's say I record 2
gtrs together with 2mics on each cab) or at least
have a choice to use other mic-pres if desired and
not have to di all line level stuff through the Mini-Me
pres.  I'm sure I could customise' Mini-Me to have post pre-amp inserts
but then again if I'm going to spend that much on a unit..

So, waiting to hear your views on the ADC-1.

Cheers,

Antti
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Neeko

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2005, 01:48:29 pm »

I'd like to add that I picked up the Mini Me and am testing it through my mbox. I think it sounds good, but I am noticing an increase in latency. This may be a result of my noobiness, but I am finding that I can only monitor with the "mix" knob set to playback rather than input on the mbox. I suppose this is a result of using the spdif in? Anyhow, thought I might add this.
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Albert

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2005, 12:33:51 pm »

The first version of the Benchmark ADC-1 will not be the preamp version, it will be the line level version. So no preamps or inserts on the initial release of the ADC-1. This comes from a very good source at Benchmark.

So your wait for the preamp version of the ADC-1 might be a long one, since the preamp version will come later. You might want to look at the Grace Design Lunatec version 3, which has their excellent preamps in a box along with converters that go up to 192k.

I personally would suggest going with preamps separate from converters though. More flexibility and you are not tied to one of the few manufacturers that make all in one units. So in this scenario you could get your Sytek preamps (or any preamp) and then couple them with whatever converters you want.
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antti

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2005, 05:22:36 pm »

Thanks for the info Albert. I'll check out the Grace.
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Ken

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #10 on: February 20, 2005, 10:57:16 am »

The Apogee Rosetta 200 should sound really good.  I am using the Rosetta 800, which definitely sounds really good, and I think they use the same converters.  

The Rosetta 200/800 is a significant improvement from the original Rosetta, and is also better sounding than the AD16, an older Apogee model.

I do not know how it sounds compared to the Lucid, although several very knowledgeable people have told me that they prefer the Rosetta 800 to the Lucid AD2496, but that they felt that the Lucid was good as well.  Not that this is a fair comparison, but the converters on the Rosetta 800 completely smoke the Digi001 converters - the difference is not subtle.
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Stan Barrington

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Re: Good quality converters for MBOX?
« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2005, 03:05:30 am »

As a Grace V3 Lunatec owner,I am disapointed with the internal AD conversion in direct comparison with a T.C. Finalizer 96k.But then...noticed that the Finalizer will accept a 96k sample which the Grace will produce,then downsize to output at 44.1 which my Roland VS1824 will accept.MUCH better now thank you.But ultimately the LUCID GEN X6/96 will output wordclock to both the Grace and Finalizer for drum tracking.    
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