MOTU 896mk3 Hybrid Audio Interface
Hybrid FireWire / USB2 connectivity
As a hybrid audio interface, the 896mk3 provides flexible connectivity to any Mac or PC via FireWire or high-speed USB 2.0, with eight channels of pristine 24-bit 192 kHz analog recording and playback, combined with sixteen channels of optical digital I/O, stereo AES/EBU, S/PDIF and separate analog main outs. Expand your system by connecting the 8pre mic input expander or other MOTU audio interfaces.
- Hybrid FireWire/USB2 connectivity — connect to your computer via plug-and-play FireWire or hi-speed USB2.
- CueMix FX™ — flexible 28 input/16 bus mixer with on-board DSP effects, including reverb with sends/returns, plus EQ and compression on every input and output.
- 28 inputs / 32 outputs (at 44.1/48 kHz) — there's no channel sharing in the 896mk3; the mic inputs, AES/EBU I/O, S/PDIF I/O, headphone out and main outs are all handled as separate channels.
- Front-panel control — access any setting in your entire 896mk3 mix directly from the front panel.
- Stand-alone operation — program your mixes at the studio and then bring the 896mk3 to your gig — no computer needed. Need to tweak the mix? Do it on site using the back-lit LCD and front-panel controls.
- Multiple CueMix FX mixes — for example, create different monitor mixes for the main outs and headphones. Or add send/return loops for outboard gear — with no latency.
- Eight rear panel combo jacks provide 1/4” or XLR mic input with phantom power, pad and plenty of gain.
- Clip protection — input limiter prevents digital clipping and distortion from overloaded signal levels up to +12 dB over zero.
- Eight 24-bit 192kHz analog inputs and outputs on XLR jacks
- Precision Digital Trim™ — Digitally controlled analog trim on all analog inputs provides accurate adjustements in 1 dB increments. Fine-tune the balance of your analog inputs and then save/recall trim configurations.
- Flexible optical I/O — 16 channels of ADAT lightpipe, 8 channels of SMUX (96 kHz) or two pairs of stereo TOSLink. Mix and match formats between the two banks.
- Expandable — add additional interfaces for more I/O as your needs grow.
- Separate XLR main outs and front-panel headphone jacks, each with independent volume control.
- Stereo 24-bit 96kHz AES/EBU in/out
- Stereo 24-bit 96kHz S/PDIF in/out
- Word clock in and out
- Foot switch input — conveniently located on the front panel...connect a standard foot pedal switch (sold separately) for hands-free punch-in and punch-out while recording. Or map the pedal to any keystroke function in your host software.
- Includes native 32- and 64-bit drivers for Mac OS X and Windows 7/Vista, including ASIO, WDM, Wave, Core Audio, and Core MIDI. Supports all popular Mac and Windows audio software.
- 100% compatible with all host-based effects processing in today's popular audio programs.
- Plug-and-play operation with your Mac or PC via FireWire or high-speed USB 2.0.
- Front panel volume control for monitoring. Stereo, Quad, 6.1, 7.1 and user-defined surround monitoring setups available.
- Two front panel headphone jacks with independent volume controls.
- Comprehensive front panel metering for all analog and digital audio I/O.
- Dedicated front panel clock status LEDs.
- Chassis dimensions, excluding rack ears and front and back panel knobs and connectors: 19 x 7 x 3.5 inches (48.26 x 17.78 x 8.89 cm). Knobs and connectors extend up to 0.5 inch (1.27 cm) from front and back panels, adding 1 inch (2.54 cm) to depth. With rack ears attached, fits standard 19 inch (48.26 cm) rack at 2U high.
The 896mk3 is equally well-suited for studio and stage, with or without a computer. As an interface or standalone mixer, the 896mk3 provides 28 separate inputs and 32 separate outputs, including dedicated main outs on XLRs and two front panel headphone outs.
On-board digital mixer with effects for monitoring and live mixing
Connect all of your studio gear, including microphones, guitars, synths, keyboards, drum machines and even effects processors. Record, monitor, route and process all of these live inputs using the professional on-board CueMix FX digital mixer – with no latency and no processor strain on your computer. Apply hardware DSP-driven effects processing to inputs, outputs, and busses independent of your host computer. Add Classic Reverb™ with lengths up to 60 seconds. Further sculpt your sound with 7-band parametric EQ featuring filter types carefully modeled after British analog console EQs. Choose between two forms of compression: a conventional compressor and the Leveler™, an accurate model of the legendary LA-2A™ optical compressor that provides vintage, musical automatic gain control.
Advanced audio analysis tools
Analyze and scope your audio with advanced diagnostic tools, including a full-screen real-time FFT display, spectrogram "waterfall" display, full-featured oscilloscope, X-Y plot, and linear/polar phase analysis graphs.
The 896mk3 provides cross-platform compatibility with Mac and Windows and all of your favorite audio software and host-based effects via WDM/ASIO/Core Audio drivers. Or you can use the included AudioDesk workstation software for Mac, with 24-bit recording/editing and 32-bit mixing/processing/mastering.
The 896mk3 is the flagship for MOTU's unique "hybrid" audio interface line, which delivers universal FireWire and high-speed USB 2.0 connectivity.
FireWire has long been recognized as a reliable, high-performance connectivity standard for professional audio interfaces like the 896mk3. Meanwhile, high-speed USB 2.0 has also developed into a widely adopted standard for connecting peripheral devices to personal computers.
To fully support both formats, the 896mk3 hybrid audio interface is equipped with FireWire jacks and a high-speed USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec) connector, and you can use either port to connect the 896mk3 to your computer. This gives you maximum flexibility and compatibility with today’s ever-expanding universe of Mac and Windows computers.
If your computer does not have a FireWire port, then obviously you will need to connect the 896mk3 to one of its high-speed USB 2.0 ports.
If your computer has both FireWire and USB2, then it is your choice, and your decision will depend mostly on other peripherals you may also have.
Adding more I/O to your 896mk3 system
As with other MOTU FireWire interfaces, the 896mk3 supplies two FireWire jacks so it can be daisy-chained with additional MOTU FireWire audio interfaces or other devices.
The 896mk3 is also fully compatible with the 8pre, a single rack MOTU interface that adds 8 mic preamp inputs to the 896mk3. Because the 8pre connects to the 896mk3 via ADAT optical, its mic inputs are fully integrated into the 896mk3's on-board CueMix FX digital mixer.