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  #1  
Old 09-04-2012, 10:46 PM
aftermid aftermid is offline
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Default Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

Has anyone been able to compare the avid interfaces/preamps with other interfaces such as the Omni and others? It seems that the 3rd party interfaces and preamps are cheaper, but do they sound as good?
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  #2  
Old 09-04-2012, 11:05 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

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Originally Posted by aftermid View Post
Has anyone been able to compare the avid interfaces/preamps with other interfaces such as the Omni and others? It seems that the 3rd party interfaces and preamps are cheaper, but do they sound as good?
Ah the Omni *is* an Avid interface.

Why don't you explain what you are want to record/how many Mic pres/line ins you need in an interface, what type of interface you want (Firewire, USB, HD/TDM etc.), whether tracking with fx and no-latentcy mixer is important etc. etc. many things to consider here.

And yes many 3rd party interfaces have very nice quality converters and pre-amps (Geez its easy to think of many mid to high-end priced preamps that are much more highly regarded than anything from Avid.).

What's your budget? We've not got a clue if you are considering $10k/channel preamp+interface or a used $50 mbox 2.


Darryl
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  #3  
Old 09-05-2012, 08:55 PM
aftermid aftermid is offline
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

yes, I know that the omni is from Avid. But it is cheaper than avid's other interfaces. Assuming that we would need 8 or 16 in/outs. How does the omni's sound compare side by side with digi's other interfaces? or would the sound of a 3rd party interface with, say, another preamp like an Avalon sound better? Just trying to see if anyone has done some A/B testing with digi's interfaces and preamps with 3rd party interfaces and preamps.
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  #4  
Old 09-05-2012, 09:42 PM
bacchus40 bacchus40 is offline
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

i've got the HD OMNI... the word around the water tank is all HD interfaces sound the same, i can attest to them sounding extremely musical and very smooth, nicely rounded
A/D conversion...

at the end of the day all units, 3rd party or from AVID benefit the most when clocked from a proper dedicated external source... the line between all the top manufacturers has gotten blurred as of the last 2 years.... black lion audio makes their own clock source now and is a good bang for the buck...

i've asked the question here before as well and it seems motu, apogee, focusrite, & even some of the $10k units are all up there in par with HD AVID units...
i would say the biggest draw for AVID gear is true compatibility and air-tight integration with PRO TOOLS HD..

it just comes down to how many I/Os you need for your setup.. i'm happy with 8 in at this point... but am considering purchasing a MOTU 24I/O in the future for the odd full live band off the floor recording...

you should not let the lower price-tag of the omni deter you from purchasing.. i'm extremely satisfied with mine and so is everybody else i've spoken to.. its got a full feature set thats tough to beat....
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Old 09-06-2012, 10:09 AM
nst7 nst7 is offline
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

The conversion quality of the Omni is the same as the HD IO.

The reason it's cheaper is because it has less inputs and outputs than the HD IO. In spite of all the I/O you see on the unit, it is only 8 in, 8 out, and 4 of the ins must be digital. Whereas the HD IO 8x8 has 8 in, 8 out analog, plus another 8 in, 8 out digital, or it can accept analog expansion cards, bringing it up to 16x16 analog. Or you could get the HD IO 16x16 which already comes with the expansion cards, at a slight discount.
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Old 10-22-2012, 08:22 PM
aftermid aftermid is offline
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

Quote:
at the end of the day all units, 3rd party or from AVID benefit the most when clocked from a proper dedicated external source... the line between all the top manufacturers has gotten blurred as of the last 2 years.... black lion audio makes their own clock source now and is a good bang for the buck...
Can tell me a little bit more what you mean by the external clock source and how it plays a part in the interfaces quality
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Old 10-22-2012, 10:02 PM
bacchus40 bacchus40 is offline
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

word clock... a proper clock source like apogees big ben or black lion's new offering used as master
clock source for your converters increases the fidelity of recordings, and most all the time will have a positive effect in the material recorded..

there have been several tests in the subject..

it has been confirmed that even HD OMNI & AVID HD interfaces see improvements when slaved to an external clock source.

by default, lesser quality converters see improvements when using an AVID HD interface as external master clock source..
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Old 10-23-2012, 05:08 AM
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panamajack panamajack is offline
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

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Originally Posted by bacchus40 View Post
...it has been confirmed that even HD OMNI & AVID HD interfaces see improvements when slaved to an external clock source...
I am surprised no one has questioned this comment. Although my limited understanding is the Apogee converters were supposed to be an upgrade from the 192s, I have not heard a blind test. Avid's current marketing certainly implies the newest Avid interfaces represent a noticeable improvement over the blue (192) interfaces. And even that previous generation had "loop-sync" (sort of a token-ring network) -- which I thought was supposed to be tight. Sounds pretty good to me.

In addition to a few PT HD rigs, I have a Logic setup using a MOTU 424 card, and all those interfaces (and multiple computers, too) are running under an Aardvark Aardsync II driving a Sync DA. Articles were written back when Aardvark was a going concern saying that "blind tests" indicated an improvement (i.e., when used externally with a 192). But I do not believe the claims Avid has made relative to the latest converters suggest a need for a Black Lion or Apogee (or Antelope or SyncroGenius HD-Pro) master clock to reach full potential. I am thinking a top notch pre-amp in front of the Avid converters would be money better spent than on an external clock.

But even with the hardware available to me, the experimenting would be too time consuming. Maybe someone else can state recent blind tests to confirm your claim. And see if Avid breaks in to dispute any of it.

I use the external clock because I have two separate computers (one running OSX, the other running Windows). The sequencer runs on one, the samples on the other, which get fed back via ADAT. A little old-fashioned and more cables than newer ways like Ethernet. And I do believe the Aardvark setup is superior to the MOTU clock.
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  #9  
Old 10-23-2012, 09:51 AM
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29CountsNY 29CountsNY is offline
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

I don't have Avid I/O's but I can speak for adding an external clock and the improvement's it 'CAN' make.
I have a Tascam DM3200 and the clock inside the unit is pretty good.
Per recommendation from a gent at the local mastering facility, he recommended a new clock to tie everything together when I asked about getting new converters.
Purchased an Antelope Isochrone OCX to test out.
Hands down the sound was clean, clear, more 3D, generally more pleasing to the ears. I could hear things that before I could not.
Did an A|B|C shoot out with the Tascam as master, then the Antelope as master, then tried a Lucid GenX192 as master. Every time, no matter what was played, the group picked the Antelope. Same response from all those in the room also, more clarity, better imaging.
Personally I believe that a clock can alter the sound of converters, whether it is the sound you are looking for, that is a different story.

You gotta try it for yourself, in your own room to determine if it makes a difference for you.
But I can tell you if I was going to move to Avid interfaces, I would still use my Isochrone as the master clock.
But that's my personal opinion.
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  #10  
Old 10-24-2012, 01:12 PM
bacchus40 bacchus40 is offline
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Default Re: Traditional Avid interfaces vs 3rd party interfaces

panamajack, yeah man.. if you'd rather some one else do the testing for yah and then describe what they're hearing back.. go for it.. hahahha...

to be perfectly honest this is old news by now.. it was a hot topic when i was going through my training, like ten years ago... back then i got lucky n' we had a couple different clock sources in the studio.. every time we ran a proper master, be it TDM or Digi001 or whatnot... they all showed improvements in clarity... much like has been posted.. a somewhat 3d effect, better stereo width, even low end gets a nice boost in punch and tone... its pretty damn obvious actually... i suspect most discerning listeners will be hard pressed not to hear a difference.

if you do a little research, and understand what we are doing when we slave a unit to a proper clock source, principles of syncing and simple 0s & 1s understanding you'll realize why it makes a difference.!...

I agree as well 29counts, i already have great pre-amps, amazing converters, next up is a proper clock source... i know it makes a difference

Quote:
Originally Posted by panamajack View Post

But even with the hardware available to me, the experimenting would be too time consuming. Maybe someone else can state recent blind tests to confirm your claim. And see if Avid breaks in to dispute any of it.
Avid could care less about any of this.. they already know it makes a difference mate... they are in pro audio after all.. there's no questioning it... but they did build excellent HD UNITS and the new clock chips are
a great improvement... again... do some research... now we have an option to improve other legacy converters just by running an AVID HD unit as master clock!.. this is what i'm doing with my HD omni & UA 4-710D {not that its a legacy
unit, nor a cheap one at that}...

& i can guarantee yah... it sounds damn nice.!! very pristine imaging.. deep, solid tones... its a beautiful thing
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