Apogee Quartet Announced

Apogee have been busy expanding their super premium product range into new, more accessible waters over the past few years. Which way will the Quartet fall?

Back when we reviewed the Apogee ONE, I was about as impressed as I’ve ever been with the sublime quality of the Apogee sound. Transparency be damned for a second, the Duet 2 is on my personal shopping list. The Quartet appears in many ways to be two Duet 2s with the connectivity breakouts attached in a (somewhat gorgeous) box, along with a dedicated wordclock and USB port for a controller to pass through. It does cost roughly the same as buying two Duets though, so the use case is pretty clear; If you need four inputs simultaneously along with six (plus discrete headphone) outputs but don’t need any more, the Quartet sits snugly between the Duet 2 and the ageing Ensemble in both price and portability stakes.

Apogee Quartet

Apogee Quartet

Here are the main specs:

  • Price: $1295
  • System: Mac only
  • Inputs: 4x combi with 75dB of mic gain, 2x 4 channel optical
  • Outputs: 6x TRS, stereo headphone
  • Word clock
  • USB thru
  • OLED surface with touch controls
  • Aggregation with Duet 2 possible for combined I/O

 

We’re interested in where you guys stand on the Quartet. Is it just too far outside the realms of what you do to be able to justify its purchase, or are there those of you out there that regularly record more than two channels simultaneously and wish there was a middle ground between crazy expensive pro-studio and pro-sumer gear? The more we know, the more we’ll be able to tailor to you…

Oh, here’s a nice little intro video:

  • VHS

    This looks awesome from both an aesthetic and utilitarian point of view. If I didn’t already have an interface that I bought recently, I’d be eyeing this baby.

    • http://www.ohdratdigital.com Chris

      Interesting VHS! Do you regularly record more than two inputs or is having the convenience of not worrying about cabling a big draw for you?

      • VHS

        I rarely record more than two inputs at once, four tops, these days. It’s mostly about the convenience of cabling. I also wanted the outputs for potentially using them for external summing duties. Room to grow but in all honesty I haven’t used the outputs as much as I’d anticipated, yet.

        • http://www.ohdratdigital.com Chris

          Ah the eternal question. Does OD sell kidney, lung, and possibly a limb for a SSL AWS desk for out of the box mixing, or do we go for a more boutique multi output audio interface and summing box and mix in software?!

          • VHS

            Yep! That’s the type of question that haunts the humble audio producer’s short, budgeted, Technicolor dreams! :)

  • John

    I have a duet 1 and it is fantastic. I upgraded from an mbox mini 2 and the stability and integration of the duet was such a breath of fresh air, not to mention the overall sound and build quality. My only issue is the lack of inputs, and only for convenience. I was eyeing an ensemble but figured apogee would be developing a thunderbolt interface.

    • http://www.ohdratdigital.com Chris

      From what we know Apogee and Thunderbolt is definitely on the cards, but it appears that bandwidth and latency are well within Apogee’s QC rules when it comes to a 4/8 interface… perhaps the question is will Ensemble be updated to USB Duet 1 style or will Thunderbolt be left to the top flight?

      • John

        I’d say that they would be eyeing the Apollo which has a Thunderbolt upgrade available for the next incarnation of the Ensemble. Also I have seen comments about the fact that a portable interface that uses USB takes up valuable USB real estate when paired with a macbook pro, which only has 2 USB ports. One of the things I love about the Duet 1 is that it is firewire which leaves my 2 USB ports free for my Virus Ti and Maschine.

  • guitardoh

    I bought one this afternoon and just got it working – it is really cool. I had a problem with Cubase. Cubase recognized the interface but wouldn’t play sound. After hours of fiddling around I created an aggregate an selected the Apogee as the only device and it finally worked for me. I don’t understand why I needed to create an aggregate, I didn’t have to do that with my PesSonus interface. Another unusual thing, I didn’t have this problem with GarageBand, ITunes nor Audacity. So there is something weird with Cubase but in the end I got it to work so it is OK. This unit sounds really great and looks pretty cool next to my Macbook Air mounted on a Rain laptop stand. It looks like it was created by apple specifically for Mac’s. Tomorrow I will try some serious recording, today was wasted getting it working with Cubase, but now that that is done I am ready to record. The unit is pricey but I guess worth it from an aesthetic standpoint. Plus I really need 4 inputs for our group which is all acoustic instruments. I will also do some MIDI stuff with electric guitars so I am happy it has a decent guitar preamp as well as the mic inputs. I am converting from PC to MAC and have used Sonar for years so I don’t know where I will end up with Mac recording software but for now the free version of Cubase is all I need and I am happy I got it to finally play some music in Cubase.

  • Andrea Glaser

    I’d get it for $1000… At $1300 you may as well just get a used ensemble. We have a duet 1 and usually run about 4-6 things simaltaneously- everything ‘beat’ into one channel, and everything melody through a mixer into the other channel. It works alright but it would be great to be able to use more of our live sessions for final recordings. We’d been eyeing ensembles for a while now until this came out and are now trying to decide if there’s anything in it that puts it above a used ensemble.

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