As one of the biggest names in pro audio, Apogee Electronics has been innovating and designing high-quality interfaces, converters, and more for over 30 years. Known for their brilliant, top of the line sound, Apogee’s conversion technology has won countless awards and can be found on many hit records.

How do you know what Apogee interface is right for your studio? What's the difference between the brand's microphone offerings? How can the brand's plug-ins help you utilize the sound of a mix master? All will be answered in the Buyer's Guide below. First, let's talk a little about the legacy of Apogee.

The History of Apogee


The Apogee story starts in 1985 when company co-founders Betty Bennett, Bruce Jackson, and Christof Heidelberger decide to tackle the issue of digital audio quality. Even back then, many were complaining that digital audio was lacking the warmth and soul of analog recordings. Apogee would make its public debut at the 1986 AES show where the trio would offer demos of the new 944 Series lowpass filter. This filter fit into several channels of a Sony PCM3324 24-track digital machine.

While the brand's first offering wasn't an immediate success (it did win a TEC Award), Apogee would quickly become known for its impactful converter technology and streamlined interfaces. In 1991, Apogee's first standalone converters, the AD-500 and DA-1000, became available to the public, and in 1997, the Apogee Innovation audio interface made its debut.

Apogee is still led by Betty Bennett and under her watch, the brand is continuously evolving its product offerings and tailoring gear towards creators of all backgrounds. From the brilliant Symphony I/O MkII and Symphony Desktop interfaces to plug-ins like Clearmountain’s Domain, Apogee continues to be synonymous with great-sounding recordings and mixes.


Apogee Audio Interfaces

Apogee Symphony I/O MkII Interface

As the flagship of Apogee’s interface offerings, the Symphony I/O Mk II is viewed by many as one of the highest-end options for studios. Offering detailed, crystal clear AD/DA conversion, the Symphony captures the depth and tone of your recordings in a way that sounds incredibly lifelike. With its ultra low latency, touch screen display, and robust chassis, users will find the Symphony I/O MkII to be incredibly high performing.

The true beauty of the Apogee Symphony I/O Mk II is its ability to conform to your environment. Its stunning range of connectivity options includes Thunderbolt, Pro Tools HD, Dante + Pro Tools HD, and Waves SoundGrid network, so no matter your workflow the interface will fit. In addition, the I/O is completely customizable with four base I/O configurations (8x8, 16x16, 24x24, and 32x32) that can be expanded via two module slots as you grow your studio.

Spec Check

Basics
- Up to 32 channels of modular analog I/O with optional mic preamps. Additional cards for I/O include 2×6, 8×8, 16×16, or 8×8 with 8 mic preamps.
- Choice of Thunderbolt (Mac), Pro Tools HD (Mac/PC), Dante + Pro Tools HD (Mac/PC, or Waves SoundGrid (Mac/PC) connectivity.
- Ultra-low latency performance – 1.35 ms with Thunderbolt and Logic Pro X
- Highly customizable Symphony Control software provides easy access to all I/O parameters
- Intuitive touchscreen display and front panel control

Apogee Ensemble Interface

With the Ensemble interface, Apogee delivers ultra-high performance and eight fantastic mic preamps in a robust, compact 1U chassis. Using Apogee’s legendary AD/DA conversion, the Ensemble preserves the integrity of your recordings down to the finest detail. The included eight microphone preamps each offer 75 dB of gain, ensuring that even the lowest output mic’s will function to their full potential. The interface offers guitar inputs on the front, two PurePower headphone outputs, and ultra-low latency via Thunderbolt connectivity. The Ensemble brings great value to users needing flexibility without sacrificing excellent sound.

Spec Check

Basics
- 30 X 34 I/O
- Thunderbolt 2 Mac audio interface
- Legendary Apogee AD/DA conversion
- 8 Mic preamps with up to 75 dB of gain and Advanced Stepped Gain circuit

Analog Inputs
- 4 mic/line/instrument combination inputs
- 2 1/4″ balanced analog inserts
- 4 XLR mic/line inputs
- 2 1/4″ hi-z guitar/instrument inputs with Class-A JFET input stage

Digital Inputs
- Optical IN: Supports ADAT, SMUX & S/PDIF
- ADAT: 16 channels 44.1-48 kHz on 2 Toslink connectors
- SMUX: 8 channels 88.2-96 kHz on 2 Toslink connectors
- S/PDIF: 4 channels, up to 96 kHz on 2 Toslink connectors
- Coax IN: 2 channels of S/PDIF, up to 192 kHz on 1 RCA connector
- Word clock input on BNC connector

Analog Outputs
- 2 1/4″ balanced monitor outputs
- 8 balanced outputs on 1 DSUB 25-pin connector
- 2 independent 1/4″ stereo headphone outputs
- 2 1/4″ dual-mode guitar/instrument outputs

Digital Outputs
- Optical OUT: Supports ADAT, SMUX & S/PDIF
- ADAT: 16 channels 44.1-48 kHz on 2 Toslink connectors
- SMUX: 8 channels 88.2-96 kHz on 2 Toslink connectors
- S/PDIF: 4 channels, up to 96 kHz on 2 Toslink connectors
- Coax OUT: 2 channels of S/PDIF, up to 192 kHz on 1 RCA connector
- Word clock output on BNC connector

Apogee Element 88 Interface

Those looking for a great sounding interface for their project studio will find the Apogee Element 88 to be a top choice with a budget-friendly price. Featuring eight mic preamps, AD/DA conversion up to 24 bit/ 192 kHZ, and Thunderbolt connectivity, the Element brings you a lot of features for the price. Using the Element Control Software, you can control all of the interface’s parameters through your computer. All coming in a convenient 1U form, the Element will powerfully serve bands, project studios, and more.

Spec Check

Basics
- 16 X 16 I/O
- Single port Thunderbolt connectivity to Mac for ultra-low latency performance
- AD/DA conversion for recording up to 192kHz/24-bit
- 8 analog inputs with world-class mic preamps and selectable 48v phantom power

Analog Inputs
- 4 mic/line/instrument combination inputs and 4 XLR inputs

Digital Inputs
- Optical IN: Supports ADAT, SMUX & S/PDIF
- ADAT: 8 channels 44.1-48 kHz on 1 Toslink connector
- SMUX: 8 channels 88.2-96 kHz on 2 Toslink connectors
- S/PDIF: 2 channels, up to 96 kHz on 1 Toslink connector

Analog Outputs
- 2 balanced L/R XLR outputs
- 2 balanced 1/4” outputs
- 2 1/4” stereo headphone outputs

Digital Outputs
- Optical OUT: Supports ADAT, SMUX & S/PDIF
- ADAT: 8 channels 44.1-48 kHz on 1 Toslink connector
- SMUX: 8 channels 88.2-96 kHz on 2 Toslink connectors
- S/PDIF: 2 channels, up to 192 kHz on 1 Toslink connector

Apogee Symphony Desktop

With a conveniently small footprint, the Symphony Desktop is perfect for users needing the convenience of a home studio interface while still demanding excellent sound quality. The Symphony Desktop brings you two high-end mic preamps, fantastic Apogee AD/DA conversion, and onboard DSP.  Using Apogee’s Alloy Mic Preamp emulation technology, the Symphony Desktop brings you accurate, precise sounding emulations of the Neve 1066 and Ampex 601. Offering USB connectivity and 24-bit/192 kHz resolution, this interface is perfect for Mac and PC users in both on-the-go settings as well as at home.

Spec Check

Basics
- 10 IN x 14 OUT simultaneous channels of audio
- USB connectivity over type C Connector
- A/D & D/A Resolution up to 24bit/192kHz
- 2 Advanced Stepped Gain mic preamps, up to 75dB of gain, variable impedance
- Built-in hardware DSP processing of Apogee FX Rack plugins

Analog Inputs
-2 mic/line/instrument combination inputs
- 1 1/4″ balanced analog inserts

Analog Outputs
- 2 balanced 1/4” outputs
- 2 assignable headphone outputs: 1 x 1/4", 1 x 1/8”

Digital I/O
- 2 Optical Toslink (ADAT,S/PDIF)


Apogee Microphones & On-The-Go Accessories

MiC Plus USB Condenser Microphone

Apogee’s MiC Plus is a studio-quality condenser that plugs right into USB ports, making it great for podcasting or recording music in unique locations. The microphone easily connects to your iPhone, iPad, Mac and PC, and allows you to record immediately without need for a separate interface. With 46 dB of gain, a headphone output, and 24 bit/96 kHz sound quality, the MiC Plus streamlines your recording process with ease.

Spec Check

Basics
- PureDIGITAL connection for pristine sound quality up to 24-bit/96kHz
- Cardioid condenser microphone capsule
- Headphone output with Blend feature offers zero-latency recording
- Compatible with iOS, macOS, and Windows 10
- All cables included

HypeMiC USB Condenser Microphone

With the same feature set as the MiC Plus, the HypeMiC brings great sounding recording via USB with one major upgrade: studio-quality onboard compression. With three analog compression settings built right into the mic, you’re able to get vocals, acoustic guitars, and more sounding great in a matter of seconds. Plug the mic into your device, choose the amount of compression, and record with detailed, clear sound.

Spec Check

Basics
- Built-in analog compressor
- PureDIGITAL connection for pristine sound quality up to 24-bit/96kHz
- Cardioid condenser microphone capsule
- Headphone output with Blend feature offers zero latency recording
- Compatible with iOS, macOS, and Windows 10
- All cables included

Apogee Jam+

The Jam+ is a micro-sized unit that enables you to connect and use instruments on the go. With the Jam+, you’ll be able to connect right to your iOS device or computer and use electric guitar, bass, keyboards, and more. With pristine, high-quality sound, users can record their takes while on the move.

Spec Check

Basics
- Apogee’s PureDIGITAL connection for pristine sound quality
- Works with guitar, bass, keyboards, synths, or any acoustic instrument with pick-up
- Dual mode option for Clean or Overdrive signal
- Drive mode makes virtual amps and effects sound more realistic
- Stereo output connects to headphones or powered speakers
- 24-bit/96kHz high resolution audio
- Works with iOS, Mac and Windows PC
- Includes Lightning, USB and USB Type-C cables
- Includes BIAS FX Jam desktop software with premium amplifiers and pedal effects

Groove USB DAC

Apogee’s Groove is a portable USB connected DAC and headphone amp, allowing you to listen to music from your Mac or PC with brilliant sound quality. Plug it into your USB port and plug your headphones into the Groove, and you’re set. Listening to your favorite music, you’ll notice a vast enhancement of sound, including improved dynamics, stereo image, and better low end.

Spec Check

Basics
- Up to 24 bit / 192kHz audio
- USB 2.0 connection to Mac and PC
- Powered by USB
- Top panel buttons for adjusting volume level
- Constant Current Drive™ provides smooth frequency response with any headphones
Quad Sum DAC™, 4 DACs per channel for highest dynamic range and lowest distortion


Apogee Plugins

Apogee Clearmountain’s Domain

Developed with the world-famous mix engineer himself, Clearmountain’s Domain recreates many of the iconic sounds that Bob Clearmountain uses in his mixes. Bob has put his signature stamp on recordings for The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, and David Bowie and now you can access the same tools. With Apogee’s new plugin, the spaces, delays, and more can be integrated into your sessions. With tabs like Reverb, Stereo Delay, Delay Blur, Pitch Shifting and more, the sounds of Bob’s iconic workflow are at your fingertips.

Apogee Clearmountain's Spaces

Offering the sounds from a portion of the Clearmountain’s Domain plug-in, Clearmountain’s Spaces is a reverb that offers access to the same echo chambers that Bob’s used on countless hit albums. With a 3-band EQ, De-esser, and Real Time Space Visualizer, the Clearmountain’s Spaces plugin offers supreme control over reverb sounds.

Apogee FX Rack Pultec Bundle

Giving you both the EQP-1A and the MEQ-5, the Apogee FX Rack Pultec Bundle brings the sound of the timeless tube EQs to your favorite DAW. Developed in conjunction with Pulse Techniques, the Apogee Pultec plug-ins recreate the magic of these classic units. Broad, smooth EQ curves allow you to boost and cut crucial frequencies while maintaining a natural sound. Give both of the Pultecs a try, and you’ll see why the hardware is so renowned.

Apogee FX Rack ModEQ 6 + ModComp Bundle

The ModEQ 6 and ModComp bundle offer visual audio sculpting tools in a modern user interface that allows users to tweak, modify, and dig in deep on each of the plug-in’s parameters. The ModEQ 6 offers useful Band Solo controls. In order to hear each of the EQ bands as they’re tweaked, a built-in spectrum analyzer makes narrowing in on certain frequencies a breeze. ModComp offers brilliant options like a Dry/FX blend for parallel processing and auto makeup gain. With three styles of compression, you’ll find the right tone seamlessly.

Apogee FX Rack Opto-3A

A digital recreation of a classic solid-state opto-style compressor, the Apogee Opto-3A offers original controls like one knob Peak Reduction and Output Gain, while adding in useful new amenities like a sidechain HP filter, wet/dry blend knob, and more. Using the same looks and sound as the modeled hardware, the Opto-3A sounds great on guitars, vocals, and more.

Josh FrostIf you have any questions about Apogee or would like to purchase the brand's gear for your studio, we can help. Please contact a Vintage King Audio Consultant via email or by phone at 866.644.0160.