Review on Apogee Symphony Desktop
- 10th Generation Intel Core i5-10400 6-Core Processor (Up to 4.3GHz)
- 12GB 2666MHz DDR4 Memory; 512GB NVMe M.2 SSD; 8X DVD-Writer Double-Layer Drive (DVD-RW)
- Intel Wireless Wi-Fi 6 AX200 802.11ax Dual-Band 2.4GHz and 5GHz featuring 2x2 MU-MIMO technology; Bluetooth 5.1; 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet LAN
|Price history for Acer Aspire TC-895-UA92 Desktop, 10th Gen Intel Core i5-10400 6-Core Processor, 12GB 2666MHz DDR4, 512GB NVMe M.2 SSD, 8X DVD, 802.11ax Wi-Fi 6, USB 3.2 Type C, Windows 10 Home|
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The Review on Apogee Symphony Desktop
as the home recording boom Continuing its rise into the stratosphere, the tendency for small, single or dual channel interfaces has reached critical mass, which is great for anyone working track by track or relying on samples and drum machines for their groove requirements.
For those working in the context of a full band or with live drums, the small desktop interface is seen as more of an overdub machine, ideal for placing toplines on pre-tracked audio or for recording final sing in the comfort of your own home, but as a primary interface is probably better suited for people who don’t play well with others.
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After all, modern drum recording usually requires at least eight inputs alone. Overheads, that’s two, close mics on each piece of a five piece kit (often with multiples on the kick), then we add our stereo pair for the room plus any other character or ambient mics we have in mind. Things can get out of hand pretty quickly.
Fortunately, gear manufacturers are finally starting to understand the plight and have found a solution where you’d least expect it – in the oft-overlooked world of ADAT expansion. If you’re looking for an ADAT-equipped desktop interface, few are as scalable and sweet-sounding as the new Symphony from revered studio stalwarts, Apogee.
For anyone with even a passing interest in professional studio equipment, the name Apogee is one steeped in prestige, especially when it comes to high-end, analog to digital conversion. Since the company was founded in 1985, they have brought cutting edge technology to the audio world. After starting to produce revolutionary anti-aliasing filters, Apogee released their first outboard A/DD/A converters, the AD500 and DA1000, in 1991. Since then, Apogee has maintained an excellent reputation for their converters, choosing up dozens of awards at NAMM shows along the way.
Needless to say, Apogee’s reputation in the field is unmatched, having been the insiders’ choice since the earliest days of digital studio workflow, they have forever had their place at the table of the and now with the new Symphony desktop, they may have landed on the perfect crossover interface, suitable for both professional and home recording workflows with exceptional audio quality to boot.
Apogee’s Symphony line represents the company’s very best in conversion technology, with the Symphony Desktop being part of Apogee’s mission to empower anyone to create studio-quality recordings in a home environment. The Symphony Desktop features the same AD/DA converters as the Symphony I/O Mk II, Apogee’s flagship model, packed into a small brushed aluminum unit that fits into even the most compact recording setups.
About the size of a sci-fi novel (or quite a large book of your choice), the device’s face appears to be made of Apple-style anodized aluminum, with a touchscreen display and a slide/click control button for controls. The front of the interface has a quarter-inch headphone jack and a DI input, with the two hybrid XLR/TRS inputs on the back of the unit, along with monitor outputs, optical expansion ports and a 3.5mm headphone output for driving headphones with low impedance for consumers – a nice touch for those who like to reference audio with their old iPod earbuds, especially considering that 3.5mm to quarter-inch jacks have a habit of growing legs and falling off the face of the earth walk.
The Symphony Desktop’s touchscreen provides a visual indication of the input and monitor levels, which can be easily adjusted by pressing the desired input/output and turning the control knob to the desired level. The click function of the control button can be assigned to a function of your choice, whether it be to mute the monitors, select different inputs/outputs or even do nothing at all.
The Symphony Desktop gives you a choice of three different built-in preamp settings, the default setting is an ultra-clean setting with 75 dB of clean gain, but by clicking the input icon on the touchscreen you can choose between faithful emulations of a rich and full-featured Neve 1066 preamp and a lush, tube-saturated Ampex 601 preamp.
Bundled with the Symphony Desktop is Apogee’s ECS channel strip plugin, which offers DSP-powered EQ, compression and saturation tuned by none other than Bob Clearmountain. Apogee has recognized the need for real-time monitoring while recording, and as a result, the Symphony Desktop has been designed to meet a variety of workflow needs, with a Direct Monitoring option that uses the Desktop’s built-in DSP to monitor the recording in real-time. to guard.
Direct Monitoring also allows you to shape your recordings to your liking using the Print FX feature, which you can use up up to 6 Apogee FX plugins directly on incoming recorded sounds, all powered by the built-in DSP.
Condense so powerful features in such a small unit has the added effect of challenging traditional ideas of what a recording studio looks like. Although an obvious option for home recording and mastering setups, 8 additional I/O slots via ADAT expansion make the Symphony Desktop suitable for recording anything but a symphony orchestra; a strong contender for space-conscious studios and mobile drum recording settings.
With a listed 10 x 14 I/O (once you pair the Symphony with some ADAT-friendly rack press) you’re well on your way to great drum recordings and the fact that this is fully scalable from the desktop unit (not to mention the modest physical footprint of the Symphonies) makes the Apogee unit almost like the interface equivalent of a Mac Mini – an exceptionally powerful, exceptionally flexible solution that you can fit in your backpack and take out when needed.
What’s really amazing is that all this workflow flexibility doesn’t come at the expense of audio quality for a second: something very few desktop interfaces can lay claim to. Top marks all around.
Wrap up Review on Apogee Symphony Desktop
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