Universal Audio Apollo 16 Interface Review | Studio Quality Converter

The All in One Quick High Quality ADDA

APOLLO-16ADDA audio interfaces are gems that are quite pricey, but worth what you pay for.

For most audio engineers and audiophiles, it’s about finding the right conversion of analog to digital that makes things sound lots better.

The Universal Audio Apollo 16 promises to provide the next generation of ADDA processing units.

With a thunderbolt option for lightning fast data transfers, will this unit defeat others in the same arena?

Read More about: The top high end Audio interfaces on the market


Features of this Machine

audio interface AU apolloThe Apollo 16 has 16in/out analog channels that use DB-25 connectors, which are perfect when you pair them with mixing consoles and other preamps that you might have in your studio.

UA used its UAD-2 Quad Core processor that allows you to run the UAD powered Plug-Ins in real time.

The unit also has adjustable phantom power for all analog I/O. Maximum control over inputs and outputs is achieved using the front panel pre-fader.

The Universal Audio Apollo 16’s Thunderbolt connection isn’t just a single port. It can be part of a system as you could hook it up with your other Thunderbolt devices.

The hardware comes with some very effective software. Award-winning UAD plugins have made it into this roster. You also have an analog-style control interface that allows you to monitor and track your levels.

Realtime UAD powered-plugins processing give you a heads-up whether the system is heating up quite a bit.
The only downside is that it’s for Mac. But then again, Windows USB ports have always been very high on latency.


More On The Software

apollo with macThe UAD plugins gained positive notoriety throughout the entire audio engineering industry because of its powerful emulations of vintage hardware, which used really powerful tube amplification (which is also very expensive, about thrice the price of this little unit).

The best thing about it is that these plugins are also latency-free. However, the plugins are simply designed.

There’s no useful phase meter, spectrum analyzer and other monitoring devices.

While downloading other plugins for this purpose is a good bet, it’s a little troublesome because that’s some added cost (but there’s some good suite of free plugins that could do this too).

But then again, if you’ve got the power to store your console settings using the Console Recall plugin, I’m pretty sold and I find the last paragraph a miniature trouble.


The Purest Sound Of Sounds

4 apollosThe notable trouble with most plugins, free or not, is that they sound too harsh.

They could color some things wrong and some things right. While if you’re more on the creative side and not much a perfectionist, it’s still noticeable.

That’s why the Universal Audio Apollo 16 is quite a high seller despite its pretty steep price.

The plugins function as if you were working on a tube-based interface. It has very good dynamic range and power.

While you still have the option to improve the sound by stringing up some other audio interfaces, it would get troublesome and time-consuming to achieve that. Remember, session times are usually limited and it may take an hour to hook up just three interfaces.


Final Words on the UA apollo

If you’ve got the wallet to pay for UA’s latest offering, then you get your money’s worth. By using just a single plugin, you can find the sound that you’re immediately looking for. Believe me, the only downside here is the price.

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