Duet 2 (USB): How To's

Duet, Quartet, and Ensemble Thunderbolt’s 1/4″ and XLR inputs explained

When using Duet2, Duet for iPad & Mac, Quartet, and Ensemble Thunderbolt, it is important to remember that any of the dual XLR-1/4″ combo jacks are set up so when the input is set to ‘Mic’ or ‘Line’ (+4dBu or -10dBV), only the XLR part of the jack will receive signal. This means that you will need to use an XLR cable or a cable with an XLR adapter connected to it.

The same is true in reverse- when the input is set for ‘Instrument’, only the 1/4″ part of the jack will receive signal.  This means that you will need to use a 1/4″ cable.

 

Here are some examples for setting up different types of input sources on Duet, Quartet, and Ensemble Thunderbolt:

 

Mics

Connect your Mic using only an XLR cable (no 1/4″ adapters or cables) to the XLR input jacks on your Apogee device.

Launch ‘Apogee Maestro’ from your Applications folder, go to the ‘Input’ tab and ‘Analog Level’ drop-down menu for whichever input you’re using to ‘Mic’.

If you’re using a condenser mic that requires phantom power, engage the ’48′ button on the input you’re using.

Gradually bring the input level in Maestro up until you get a good level from your input source. Make sure the meter isn’t going into the red.

 

 

Guitars, Basses, Keyboards, Hi-Z Mics that have 1/4″ cables, such as harmonica mics:

Connect your Instrument using only a 1/4″ instrument cable to the 1/4″  input jacks. (be sure that you’re connecting to the 1/4″ inputs on the combo XLR-1/4″ jacks and not the 1/4″ output jacks)

Launch ‘Apogee Maestro’ from your Applications folder, go to the ‘Input’ tab and ‘Analog Level’ drop-down menu for whichever input you’re using to ‘Instrument’.

Gradually bring the input level in Maestro up until you get a good level from your input source. Make sure the meter isn’t going into the red.

 

Sending Line-Level audio to your Apogee device and bypassing it’s mic-pres

Connect the output from your line-level piece of gear (such as a compressor or external mic-pre) to the XLR input jacks. If your Line-Level device only has 1/4″ outputs, you will need to use balanced 1/4″ to male XLR cables. You can’t use the 1/4″ input jacks on your Apogee device, as they are only used for guitars/basses/keyboards.

Launch ‘Apogee Maestro’ from your Applications folder, go to the ‘Input’ tab and ‘Analog Level’ drop-down menu for whichever input you’re using to ‘+4dBu’ (for use with professional audio gear) or ‘-10dBv’ (for use with consumer audio gear).

 

How do I record audio from the internet or other app using my Duet?

Using Duet to record audio from the internet or other apps
To set up your Apogee Duet for iPad & Mac or Duet 2 to record audio from your internet browser (or other app) into your DAW, follow the instructions below.

 

 

– Connect Duet to Mac.

 

– Launch ‘Apogee Maestro 2’ from your Applications folder.

 

– Go to the Input tab in Maestro. Click on the ‘Analog Level‘ drop-down menus and set each input for ‘+4dBu‘.

 

– Go to the Output tab in Maestro. Make sure both output channels are set for ‘+4dBu‘ and not ‘-10dBv’. On the right side of the output tab, make sure the speaker output is set for ‘Out 1-2‘ and not ‘Mixer’. Turn the speaker output up all the way. Make sure the speaker output is not muted or set for Dim.

 

– In the Output tab in Maestro, set the Headphone output for ‘Out 3-4‘. Turn headphones up to around -30 or -20.

 

– Connect a balanced 1/4″ TRS to Male XLR cable from ‘Out L‘ on the breakout cable to ‘Input 1‘. Connect the other balanced 1/4″ TRS to Male XLR cable from ‘Out R‘ on the breakout cable to ‘Input 2‘.

 

– Launch ‘Audio MIDI Setup’ (Applications> Utilities> ‘Audio MIDI Setup’) and select ‘Duet USB’ in the left-side device column and make sure that it’s set for the default input and output of the Mac by clicking on the drop-down menu on the bottom of the device column with the gear and arrow icons and selecting ‘Use this device for sound input’ and ‘Use this device for sound output’. Quit Audio MIDI Setup.

 

– Launch your DAW and create a new session with one stereo audio track. Go to the DAW’s Audio Preferences and make sure Duet is set for the Output and Input device and that the buffer is set for 128 or higher. Set the sample-rate to 44.1k.

 

– Set the input for your stereo track to ‘Input 1/2‘ or ‘Line 1/2‘. Set the output of the track for ‘Out 3-4‘.

 

– Record-enable the track and then launch your internet browser (or whichever app you’re trying to record from). As soon as you’re ready to start playing audio from your internet browser, get ready to record in your DAW.

 

– Hit record in Logic and start playing audio from your internet browser (or whichever app you’re trying to record from). Monitor the audio from your headphones.

Why do I only hear the left output channel when recording with ONE or Duet in Garageband?

Note- if you are experiencing audio in one output channel only when using the CAMERA APP, please click here. The article below is for GARAGEBAND.

If you’re only hearing sound from the left output channel when recording with ONE for iPad & Mac or Duet for iPad & Mac in Garageband (or other apps), this is most likely because you’re using a stereo track when you need to be using a mono track.

 

If you create a MONO track in Garagband, it will send your input out both Left & Right output channels. When you create a stereo track in Garageband, it will hard-pan both inputs, so input 1 goes out only the left and input 2 goes out only the right. This is why you’re only hearing sound in 1 channel. Stereo tracks are typically used for stereo mic situations or if a keyboard has a stereo output.

 

Here are some videos on how to set up ONE with Garageband (you can also apply these videos to Duet):

 

 

For Mac:

 

 

 

 

 

For iPad/iPhone:

 

How to reset the Duet 2 or Duet for iPad & Mac

A hardware reset can be a useful way of calibrating your unit to its factory default settings.

  • A reset can be accomplished by disconnecting the USB cable from the unit and then reconnecting it while pressing and holding down the encoder knob. Do not let go of the knob until the Apogee logo clears and shows the level-meter screen.

Keyboard Volume Control: Selecting Speaker or Headphone

Use the following procedure to select whether the Mac keyboard volume buttons control the level of your Apogee interface’s headphone level, or speaker level:

  1.  Launch Maestro 2 and go to the System Setup tab.
  2. Under Keyboard Volume Control, select your desired output in the drop-down menu- Speaker, Headphone
Symphony I/O
Duet iOS, Duet II, Quartet

Gain Staging – How to set proper levels with your Apogee product and recording software

Use the following steps to set input and output levels on your Apogee interface. 

Before launching your recording software:

1. Turn down the speaker/headphone output level of your Apogee interface.

2. Connect your audio source to your Apogee interface. Make sure to use the proper inputs.

• If you’re using a microphone, plug the microphone into the XLR input.

• If you’re using a guitar, bass, or other high impedance instruments, plug them into the 1/4″ instrument input.

• If you’re using an external mic-pre or another piece of line-level gear, use the XLR inputs.

Quick Tip: Some keyboards and synths can be plugged into either the Instrument or XLR inputs. You might have to experiment with what sounds better.
 

3. Launch Apogee Maestro and go to the input tab. Make the appropriate selection in the Analog Level drop-down menu for the input channel you are using.

• Microphone (Mic) – depending on the Apogee interface you are using, you would choose Ext Mic/Ext Mic 48v (ONE) or Mic (Duet, Quartet, Ensemble, SymphonyI/O with MicPre module). You will need to engage the 48v button for if you’re using a mic that requires phantom power.

• Instrument (Inst) – Guitar/Bass/some keyboards

• Line Level (+4dBu/-10dBV for balanced/unbalanced connections) – This setting is used when connecting external microphone preamps and other line-level gear.

NOTE: If you have the ONE, a line-input is accommodated by choosing Ext Mic and turning the input gain all the way down.
 

4. Set the input gain of your Apogee interface.

There are two ways you can adjust your input gain:

• By adjusting the input software encoder in Maestro

• By turning the physical knob (encoder) on your Apogee interface (make sure you’ve set the knob to control the input channel and not the output level. See your User’s Guide for more information on setting this).

Quick Tip: Ideally, the level in the input meter should be as high as you can get it without hitting an “over”. If you see red in the meter, you know you need to turn the input gain down. In some cases you may need to adjust the output of the audio source you are using. You may need to move your microphone closer to the sound source or further away. You may need to turn the level of your guitar or keyboard up or down.
 

Launch your recording software, create an audio track, and put the track into input or record mode. It is a good idea to leave the fader of the track you are recording and any Master Fader for the mix set at their default setting.

5. Adjust the output level of your Apogee interface.

• Gradually increase the output level of your Apogee interface so you can hear what your input source sounds like in the speakers or headphones.

• After you get the output set to a comfortable listening level, listen for any distortion in the input audio.

• If the audio sounds bad, you may have something set wrong. Go through steps 2, 3, and 4 to trouble-shoot the problem.

Note: Two common issues are that the sound is too quiet or that it’s distorted. It may be a simple case of needing to turn the input gain up and the output level down or the input gain down and the output level up.