Entries in thunderbolt (9)
For those looking for a Thunderbolt option for Pro Tools HDX or Native cards, then the Sonnet Echo Express may just fit the bill, it’s not cheap at around £1000 UK, but it looks very cool. In their words…
3-Slot Thunderbolt Expansion Chassis for PCIe Cards
Sonnet’s Echo Express III enables you to connect three compatible full-size professional video capture, audio interface, and other special-purpose cards to your iMac, Mac mini, MacBook Air, or MacBook Pro with a Thunderbolt port. The Echo Express III integrates a universal 300W power supply and includes a 75W auxiliary power connector for cards that require supplementary power. Even with all that power, the III is enviro-friendly; it automatically powers on/off when the connected computer powers on/off or sleeps. The use of larger, slower-spinning fans in the Echo Express III makes it the quietest Echo chassis yet. Two Thunderbolt ports support daisy chaining of up to six devices to a single port on your computer.
Neil and the guys over at Pro Tools PC have updated their site with more info on the Pro Tools PC project.
I have to say that I’m impressed with the features cited… enough to wonder what I’ll do if Apple fail to deliver me a new Mac Pro sometime in the next decade. Bearing in mind that these machines are ‘Hackintosh’ compatible it does make me consider my options. Now if only I could blag a free one…
As if Thunderbolt wasn’t fast enough already, Intel have announced a speed bump of their technology up to 20Gbps.
More and more peripherals and interfaces are arriving on the scene for audio and creative professionals, such as the highly acclaimed Apollo series and Avid Thunderbolt HD Native, but as yet many users are yet to invest in it.
Apple insider write;
“The high-speed tech, code-named Falcon Ridge, allows for simultaneous 4K video file transfer and display over two I/O channels.
Driving the tech will be a new Thunderbolt controller, currently designated by the codename Redwood Ridge, which is expected to be integrated with Intel’s fourth-generation Core processor lineup this year. Improvements over the previous Cactus Ridge controller are DisplayPort 1.2 capability when connecting to native DP displays, improved power management and a supposed decrease in material cost. “
Anything that increases data throughput for media professionals is welcome news. Watch this space.
Last week, we were invited by Universal Audio to meet with them and see the new Apollo 16 audio interface and talk about it with UA’s Jed Allen. Of course we jumped at the chance.
We’ve been very excited since seeing this - an Apollo 16 and Pro Tools 11 may well be a killer system.
Apollo 16 is targeted at professional studio installations and pro-sumer home recordists looking for a no-compromise recording interface. It will also appeal to adjacent audio markets like Post-production, Broadcast, and Live Sound.
- UA’s flagship audio interface with 16 x 16 analog I/O and best-in-class conversion
- Onboard UAD-2 QUAD DSP Processing runs the full library of 60+ UAD Powered plug-ins — both in real time, for sub-2ms tracking/monitoring, and during DAW mixing
- Twice the analog connectivity of the original Apollo — ideal for professional facilities with mixing console, outboard analog hardware, cue/headphone systems, etc.
- Connects to compatible Mac or Win 7 machines via FireWire 800* or Thunderbolt Option card (Mac only - sold separately)
- Plug-Ins from the biggest names in the business
- Additional UAD DSP Accelerator horsepower available during mixing
- UA’s flagship FireWire/Thunderbolt-ready audio interface for Mac and Windows 7*
- 16 x 16 analog I/O via DB-25 connectors — ideal for professional mixing consoles, outboard preamps, etc
- Realtime UAD-2 QUAD processing for low-latency (sub-2ms) tracking and mixing w/ UAD Powered Plug-Ins
- Thunderbolt Option Card for next-generation connectivity to compatible Macs
- Multi-unit cascading merges two Apollo 16 units for 32 x 32 analog I/O
- Four stereo Cue mixes with fully assignable outputs
- PT Mode allows easy insertion of outboard analog hardware in Pro Tools**
- New Virtual I/O feature for Realtime UAD Processing of virtual instruments and DAW tracks
- Includes “Analog Classics” plug-ins: LA-2A Classic Audio Leveler, 1176LN Limiting Amplifier, and Pultec EQP-1A EQ
- Full recall of interface and plug-in settings in DAW sessions via Console Recall plug-in (VST/RTAS/AU)
- Includes dedicated XLR monitor outs; 2 x 2 channels of AES-EBU digital I/O
- Basic stand-alone mode for persistent mixing without a computer
- Full compatibility with UAD-2 DSP Accelerator systems
- VST, AU, RTAS, and 64-bit plug-in support
Blackmagic have added the Mini Monitor and Mini Recorder to the Express to broaden the range of the UltraStudio range of Thunderbolt video interfaces. Blackmagic are stating these are supported in Pro Tools but Avid’s compatibility charts don’t yet reflect this. They say…
When you need tiny sized portable video capture and playback for your Thunderbolt laptop or desktop computer then UltraStudio Express and UltraStudio Mini are the perfect solution. You get an extremely affordable solution with high quality SD and HD video all powered from the Thunderbolt connection so you just plug in and go! UltraStudio Express includes capture and playback of SD/HD-SDI, HDMI and analog video and analog audio all in the one beautifully designed model. UltraStudio Mini Recorder is the pocket sized SDI and HDMI recorder and UltraStudio Mini Monitor features SDI and HDMI playback, perfect for simple low cost NLE monitoring.
The pricing is pretty good too.
The one downside of the new MacBook range is their limited I/O, settling for a few powerful ports rather than every port you might need.
Now Belkin are about to ship their Thunderbolt Express Dock, which offers;
- Gigabit Ethernet
- 2 x Thunderbolt
- 1 x Firewire 800
- 3 x USB 3.0 ports
- Mic In
This is a great addition to a Thunderbolt based solution and should be selling for around $300 USD.
Community member Shane, takes a look to see if the Pro Tools HD Thunderbolt Native will play nice with a Hackintosh.
The team have been considering what gets our Pro Tools Expert Product of the Year Award 2012.
Without consulting one another we made recommendations for those products we wanted to win. We all threw in our own favourites and here is the shortlist…
- Universal Audio UA Apollo
- Moog Minitaur
- iZotope Alloy 2
- Nugen Audio ISL True Peak Limiter
- Neyrinck V-Control Pro for iPad
- Pro Tools HD | Native Thunderbolt
- Sugar Bytes AAX Wrapper
- PPG WaveGenerator iPad Synth
- Arturia Mini Brute
It may come as no surprise to many of you that the product that was unanimously voted as the winner with the most votes from our team is the Universal Audio UA Apollo. For many of us it sets a new benchmark for combining great features, sound and at a great price. All those short listed are worth consideration, so check them all out!