Product Description for the Apogee Quartet
Apogee Quartet is a professional USB audio interface designed to deliver the ultimate desktop recording experience to the Mac-based studio. Featuring 4 inputs and 8 outputs of Apogee’s industry-leading AD/DA conversion technology as well as 4 world-class mic preamps, Quartet bridges the gap between the 2-channel Apogee Duet and the 8-channel Apogee Ensemble.
Connect up to 4 microphones, instruments, keyboards or line inputs. Plug in your MIDI controller or keyboard. Expand with up to 8 digital inputs. Monitor and mix it all in stereo, through up to 3 sets of speakers or in 5.1 surround. Quartet is the center of the modern studio and will help you take the performance and sound quality of your projects to the next level.
An instrument of creation, inspiration and control
With its ergonomic, angular design and intuitive user interface, Quartet is simple, enjoyable and in perfect harmony with your workspace. Dual full-color screens for critical input and output details, QuickTouch pads for easy I/O selection, and a single controller knob to conduct it all make Quartet the perfect studio control center for your Mac.
Sound Amazing with any Application
Quartet connects via high-speed USB 2.0 to any Mac, delivering unbelievably low latency for Pro Tools, Logic, Ableton Live or any core audio application.
Apogee sounds better
From the mic preamps to the AD/DA converters and the clocking, Quartet is best-in-class and cutting-edge Apogee technology. With components carefully selected in critical listening tests and highly efficient circuit design, Quartet was built by Apogee engineers to make a difference you can hear.
Smooth, detailed world-class mic preamps
Quartet’s mic preamps feature the latest components and offer seamless click-free transitions as the gain increases and decreases throughout the incredible range of 0-75dB. This unprecedented feature allows you to dial in the perfect level, either with the controller knob or from within software, while delivering ultra-low noise and smooth, crisp detail. Quartet’s mic pres are suitable for all dynamic, condenser or ribbon microphones, allowing you to capture any sound without compromise.
Pristine, next generation AD/DA converters
Much like the mic preamps, Quartet’s AD/DA converters are designed to deliver the purest recordings and best listening experience possible. Quartet’s efficient circuitry and state-of-the-art components provide a simplified signal path resulting in incredibly transparent recordings.
Looks as good as it sounds
Built with die-cast aluminum, steel and a scratch-resistant display panel hardened by UV processing, Quartet is solid, compact and perfectly integrated into the desktop studio environment. You’ll love how it looks and feels in your studio and next to your Mac.
See your I/O in detail
Dual, high-resolution displays show all input and output details. Quartet features twice the display you came to love with Duet 2. Two high resolution OLEDs deliver all the visual feedback critical for recording and monitoring. Without looking at your computer, Quartet lets you see metering, levels, grouping and phase, muting, phantom power and Soft Limit for all inputs and outputs.
Quick select for I/O control
Quartet makes it easy to access all-important recording and monitoring functions. Simply tap a QuickTouch pad on Quartet’s top panel to select an input or output and easily adjust your level with the controller knob. All input and output touchpads feature an LED highlight ring. The highlight ring of the active touchpad is brighter so you can see at a glance which input or output is selected.
Three additional configurable touchpads (labeled A, B, C) allow you to quickly access output functions such as “Mute Outputs”, “Dim Outputs”, “Sum to Mono”, “Clear Meters” or “Engage Speaker Set” selection. Each function can be assigned to a touchpad using a drop-down menu within Apogee’s Maestro 2 application.
Speaker set selection
The A, B, C, selectors above the controller knob can be configured to switch between up to 3 pairs of speakers allowing you to use Quartet just like a standard monitor controller. Simply connect 1, 2 or 3 pairs of studio monitors and tap to select which pair you would like to listen to.
Dial it in
Quickly adjust input gain and output level with Quartet’s control knob. Apogee’s Duet started an audio interface revolution with its single controller knob design. Quartet continues this tradition. A single machined aluminum knob completes Quartet’s control center. With a tap to the touchpad you can select the desired input or output and precisely dial in your level.
INPUTS and OUTPUTS
Quartet is equipped with 4 combination input connectors (XLR and 1/4”) for connecting microphones, guitars and keyboards or your favorite external mic preamps, compressors and EQs.
Quartet also includes 8 channels of digital input via 2 optical connections (ADAT/SMUX) for connecting an additional analog-to-digital converter such as Apogee’s Ensemble.
Quartet’s 6 balanced 1/4” TRS outputs offer an impressive range of possibilities. Listen and compare stereo mixes on up to three sets of speakers. Mix your audio or Final Cut video project in 5.1 surround. You can also take Quartet on the road and use all three stereo sets on stage, sending signal to the performer, monitor mixer and front-of-house. Quartet also features a studio-quality 1/4” headphone output allowing you to independently adjust your headphone level separate from the main outputs.
Quartet provides Word Clock OUT for synching an external A/D converter to Apogee’s superior clocking technology.
Quartet provides a single USB MIDI connection for your CoreMIDI compatible keyboard, synth, or DJ controller. This leaves an extra USB port available on your Mac for external hard-drives and other devices, eliminating the need for an external MIDI interface.
USB 2.0 High-speed
Faster than FireWire and as fast as USB 3.0
Quartet features Core Audio compliant, high-speed, USB 2.0 connectivity. Recent advances in the Mac’s Core Audio driver have made USB faster than FireWire with incredible latency performance. USB 2.0 is as fast as USB 3.0. The advantage of USB 3.0 is additional bandwidth not speed.
Maestro 2 control software
Access Quartet’s advanced settings with Maestro 2, Apogee’s comprehensive software control application. Maestro 2 features a single window interface with quick access to all device and system settings. Select your input type, enable Soft Limit on mic and instrument inputs, use the mixer for low latency monitoring and assign speaker sets to touchpads. Maestro 2 lets you easily configure Quartet to fit your workflow.
Soft Limit for protection from input clipping
An Apogee technology first introduced in 1992 on Apogee’s AD-500 converter, Soft Limit can be heard on countless platinum selling records around the world. Once a technology exclusively reserved for Apogee’s most advanced audio converters, Soft Limit is included in Quartet and can be enabled in Apogee Maestro software.
This superior analog design prevents the digital clipping that causes distortion by instantaneously rounding off transient peaks before they hit the analog-to-digital converter. Soft Limit allows several more decibels of apparent level to be recorded while subtly providing analog-like warmth to the sound.