Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

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starving student
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Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by starving student » Sat Dec 10, 2011 11:58 pm

I'll be testing one out early next month, on a macbook running lion and possibly on the same macbook running win 7 under bootcamp but most importantly on osx how has your experience been, what do you like and dislike about the card and why did you choose it in the first place as well as what were you comparing it to?

much thanks in advance.

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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by muthafunka » Mon Dec 12, 2011 12:56 am

Was very interested but 2 of the '4' outs being a headfone jack killed it for me. That and the lack of midi tipped it the wrong way gig-wise. NI Audio Komplete 6 for gigs and Metric Halo uln2 at home now. The NI box is ~$199 until the end of December which is a steal.

starving student
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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by starving student » Mon Dec 12, 2011 3:11 am

sup mf, what made the ni card a steal was it the quality or the price, I picked up a reason balance card to test out for a couple of days but while I was at the guitar center I just nearly beat these two cats outta a duet 2 for $399 that had been returned buy someone who had purchased more than they needed. it's in perfect condition, thing is that I didn't have enough money so i just put half down on it for them to hold it for me so I'm researching it now. people seem to speak highly of it and the model before but like you the fact that it doesn't have midi bothers me but it's not a deal breaker, my
current soundcard for comparisons sake is a first gen motu ultralite.

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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by bicarbone » Mon Dec 12, 2011 3:47 am

I switched from first gen motu ultralite to a duet mk1, it was just night and day regarding preamp quality and converters.

I have a uln-2 as well which I bought later, magnificient sound, well designed and super stable but it's $1700...

One thing about the duet is that it doesn't have optical I/O, so you're really stuck with a selfish little box. It doesn't aggregate too well either. Lack of midi is not an issue. You can get one of those cheap m-audio midi to usb device and you'll be all good. For $399, you can't go wrong IMHO.
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starving student
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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by starving student » Mon Dec 12, 2011 4:10 am

i think at the regular price It might be hard for me to go for it, coming from the ultralite I'm feelin the loss of convenience for my hardware with all those missing ins/outs, but I'm really intrigued as I've never used an audio card that was suppose to have such quality.

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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by glitchrock-buddha » Mon Dec 12, 2011 6:51 am

Just bought one today!

I have an RME fireface 400 but I don't really need all the ins and outs. Just need a couple for guitar and bass, with the option of a mic sometimes. I know a guy who'd like to use the RME for an album as he loves the sound quality and I can make a few bucks selling it so I thought I could trim down a little. I also don't like how the fireface behaves, sometimes the sound doesn't engage when I turn the computer on (would have to unplug and plug back in often) and I didn't like having to turn things on in a specific order to have it work properly. Thought I'd try something different.

Just picked up the Duet 2 today and did some testing. At first I installed the driver and it worked but when I restarted it wouldn't recognize it unless I unplugged and plugged back in. I was worried as I'd heard about this problem. However I reinstalled the software (includes firmware), restarted and now it's fine. It also thankfully doesn't pop the speakers if they're already on. The latency is amazing. Even lower than the fireface and its' usb! Like 12 or 13 seconds round trip at 256 samples in Live. Nice. Even crazy lower in Logic too, like 6 ms at 128 samples. I haven't done tests about preamp quality, I'm not even that worried about that. I htink most things are fine, but hey nobody really disagrees on that. I'll probably notice when I'm using it on a loud PA, jamming. It's also nice and portable, easy to toss in backpack when heading out to play. I also did some testing as an aggregate device with my Rig Kontrol and it seems to work great! I don't know what people are talking about it not aggregating well. Maybe that was the old one or old drivers, not sure.

I'm thinking I'll probably buy the breakout box. That way I can have a guitar and bass plugged at the same time as a mic, and switch between them as I need. Also, having the controls separate from the connections is nice. Currently its the way it is with the breakout cables but will also be so with the breakout box. And when I want to take the unit to play outside my home, I wouldn't have to detach a whole bunch of cables, just remove the duet itself from one cable.

So yeah it's only 2 in at a time, but at least it can have a separate headphone outs, meaning in a live situation I could audition sounds in headphones before playing. So it's a perfect little portable unit. I'm liking it.

May not be perfect for everyone, but it happens to fit my situation quite well.
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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by Monchai » Mon Dec 12, 2011 8:13 am

Own Duet I, love it. Saving to get mkII.

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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by kanuck » Mon Dec 12, 2011 8:29 am

also consider the rme babyface. Over all the threads I've read almost everybody says that the 2 sound identical in terms of quality. where the babyface excels though is in features. for example, want to expand your i/o for the one time you'd like to record acoustic drums. impossible with the duet but possible with adat with the babyface. want to use the fcb1010 for a live gig? all you need is a midi cable with the babyface while you'd need an midi interface (cheap) with the duet.

also, i've heard (can't confirm) that the babyface's drivers are better so slightly better latency.

side note observation: on the gearslutz forum there's lenghty threads about people complaining about their duet 2's (mostly about drivers) while I've yet to come across a bad babyface thread. Maybe this might have to do with popularity though (more users = more frequent errors). just a side note.

I always wanted the duet 2 but once I saw how it compared to the babyface I think the extra $200ish is worth it. especially for its ADAT expansion

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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by muthafunka » Mon Dec 12, 2011 2:11 pm

More than the lack of midi, it's the fact that outs 3/4 are on the headfone out so if I want to route out to some hardware in the studio/out and about then it's some kind of hacky headfone adaptor story. For live stuff a separate midi cable thing is another thing to lose or forget and I'm a bit nervous of the whole dangly bunch of cables thing out the back. No doubt the sound is stellar, so being a sound nerd I did look at it seriously but just couldn't go there for that money in the end. I had the NI AK1 box for years and loved it...sturdy as hell, superbly compact and full-featured, never a single twinge of trouble and sounded pretty damn decent. Then the Komplete Audio 6 box came out...slightly beefier, even better build parts and sounds damn good too. If I was doing much mic/recording with it then I'd maybe be fussier about the pres/conversion etc but for my mobile box that's not the issue, flexibility, usability and reliability are. As for the current $199 offer, I think they're usually at least half as much again.
That said...I did contact Apogee again to ask them to make a true 4-out with dedicated switchable headfone monitor, if they did that I'd probably be at the front of the queue.

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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by jbone1313 » Mon Dec 12, 2011 2:16 pm

You guys with the Duet 2s, please let us know if you run into the issues discussed here:

http://www.gearslutz.com/board/music-co ... d-bad.html

I am also considering purchasing a Duet 2, but after reading that GearSlutz thread, I am hesitant.

Thanks

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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by glitchrock-buddha » Mon Dec 12, 2011 4:31 pm

jbone1313 wrote:You guys with the Duet 2s, please let us know if you run into the issues discussed here:

http://www.gearslutz.com/board/music-co ... d-bad.html

I am also considering purchasing a Duet 2, but after reading that GearSlutz thread, I am hesitant.

Thanks
I can comment on that. I had the exact same issue when I first installed the software. Every time I powered down or restarted, it would not recognize the duet until I unplugged and plugged back in. The solution was quite simple. I reinstalled the software a second time. Now it works perfectly. I have a suspicion that it's new owners who have only installed the software once that this is happening to. It probably works fine for all Apogee testers because they installed it as an update. Not sure why but it seems to take on the second install (as an update rather than a first install).

I'd be interested in the babyface, but it is another 200 dollars for things I don't need and having an instrument input and phones on the side would drive me crazy. Bad design there.
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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by starving student » Mon Dec 12, 2011 6:18 pm

I've got to wait until the 12th of jan to pick it up but I'll def report back how I like it.

@glitch so when you installed it a second time you didn't un-install it first, just over the top right?
I'd like to try out the breakout box but it's out of my budget reach at this point, ...so what about your hardware besides your axes don't you have some samplers and stuff or did you get rid of all of that stuff?

@muthufunka I'm the same way about the cable adapter, it looks fugly I never trusted those things I used to have a vx-pocket that was always having trouble in that way but at $399 I felt like I had to take the plunge and at least put it on hold while I'm researching it more.

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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by glitchrock-buddha » Mon Dec 12, 2011 7:30 pm

starving student wrote:I've got to wait until the 12th of jan to pick it up but I'll def report back how I like it.

@glitch so when you installed it a second time you didn't un-install it first, just over the top right?
I'd like to try out the breakout box but it's out of my budget reach at this point, ...so what about your hardware besides your axes don't you have some samplers and stuff or did you get rid of all of that stuff?
Yeah no uninstall. Just installed again like an update.

Haven't had a hardware synth or sampler since 2001. I did have turntables but I don't set up my one technics anymore. If I needed to I could just go line in, just not at the same time as my guitars/mic. There's always the possibility I'll want more outs at some point but I don't think I'll beat the duet for portability and quality together.
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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by o0o » Mon Dec 12, 2011 11:08 pm

what does aggregate mean in this context with the duet 2?
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Re: Apogee Duet 2 Owners/users your insights and experiences plz

Post by glitchrock-buddha » Tue Dec 13, 2011 12:49 am

You can combine devices is OSX to make programs see it as one device. For example I can go into my audio setup in OSX and make an aggregate device of my apogee duet and my NI Rig Kontrol with all the ins and outs of each. I call it Duet/RK or something and assign it as my input device in Live, then I get 4 ins rather than only 2 from either one.
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