Maestro 2

Ensemble Thunderbolt acting weird when connected to Mac- audio not showing up, Maestro slow

There is a known issue where having the Symphony I/O MkII software and the Ensemble Thunderbolt software installed on the same partition will result in multiple issues, such as audio not showing up on any inputs or outputs, Maestro performing sluggish, or one or both of the devices not being recognized in Maestro and/or the firmware updater app. This will be addressed in a software update. Until then, you would need to run each installer on a separate partition for both devices to be recognized properly. If you have already ran both software installers on the same partition and you’re currently experiencing this issue, follow the instructions below:

 

  • Disconnect both devices from your Mac.
  • Run the Ensemble Thunderbolt Uninstaller and restart the Mac.
  • Run the Symphony I/O MkII Uninstaller and restart the Mac.
  • If you have only one partition and you can’t create another one, you will need to choose which device you want to use and run it’s software installer. Restart the Mac.
  • If you have a separate partition available, restart the Mac on this partition and run the installer for the other device on it. Restart the Mac.
  • Reconnect device(s).

 

What is ‘VBus’ and how do you use it?

Apogee’s VBus creates virtual hardware buses to allow expanded routing of audio within one application or between different audio applications. For example, it’s possible in Logic Pro to record a submix of multiple audio tracks onto a new audio track as described below. It’s also possible to route between two audio applications by selecting a VBus output in the source application and a VBus input in the destination application.

VBus is only available in the Symphony system. You must have either a Symphony 64 PCIe or Thunderbridge and at least one Symphony I/O, AD16x, DA16x, Rosetta 800, or Rosetta 200 to use it.

 

To use VBus:

If you have a Symphony system and everything is connected and configured properly, launch ‘Apogee Maestro 2’ from your Applications folder and go to the ‘System Setup’ tab.  Go to the right-side of the window and click the drop-down menu under ‘VBus’ to select how many channels of VBus i/o you would like to use.  As soon as you engage VBus, quit all open applications and restart your Mac.

In order for VBus I/O to appear in your audio application’s I/O list as VBus In 1-2, 3-4, etc, it’s necessary to specify the use of the Symphony driver’s names in the application’s I/O list. For example in Logic Pro X, open Mix>I/O Labels and option-click on all the I/O found under the Driver’s I/O Label column.

As an example of how to use VBus, let’s record a submix of drums onto a new stereo audio track in Logic.  In Logic’s Track Mixer, set the outputs of the individual drum audio tracks to VBout 1/2.  Create two audio tracks (or one stereo track) and set their inputs to VBin 1 and VBin 2. Record-enable the new track and commence recording. The new track will record the mix of the individual drum tracks.

What is the ‘A button’ (device ID) in Maestro for?

Most Apogee products that use the Apogee Maestro 2 control application will include a ‘Device ID’ button that can be found in multiple Maestro tabs under a graphical icon for the connected Apogee device. You will usually see this button as an ‘A’.

Here is an example of what it looks like when you have a Symphony I/O connected:

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The purpose of this button is to quickly identify which Apogee device you’re adjusting parameters in Maestro for. When you click on the button, it will light up the front-panel of the corresponding Apogee device so you can see which device you are adjusting parameters in Maestro for. Click the button again and the device will no longer be identified.

Since multiple Apogee devices can be connected and appear in Maestro at the same time, it can sometimes be confusing to know which device you’re adjusting parameters for. Having more than one Duet or Quartet connected to a Mac may not be as common as having multiple Symphony I/Os or Ensembles connected, but the ‘Device ID’ buttons are there for each product, just in case.

 

A typical use-case:

You have 2 Symphony I/Os connected to one Mac and both are showing up in Apogee Maestro. You can go to the ‘Device Settings’ tab in Maestro and change the peripheral prefix of the 2nd Symphony I/O to ‘B’ (or any other letter you want). Now, when you click the ‘B’ button (Device ID) in Maestro, the 2nd Symphony I/O will become identified.  If you click the ‘A’ button, the 1st Symphony I/O will become identified.

 

Why are the input and output level/volume popup indicators not showing up?

Several Apogee products have pop-up level indicator graphics that will appear on the desktop of your Mac when the input and output levels are adjusted from the device or from the Mac’s keyboard volume buttons.

 

If the pop-ups aren’t appearing, there are a few things to check:

Launch ‘Apogee Maestro 2’ from your Applications folder, click on the ‘Apogee Maestro 2’ drop-down desktop menu and select ‘Preferences’. Confirm that the ‘Display pop-ups’ checkbox is checked. If you don’t see this option, then pop-ups aren’t available for the product you’re using.

 

If you’ve confirmed that the ‘Display pop-ups’ checkbox is checked and you’re still not getting the pop-ups, try the following:

 

– Unplug/replug your Apogee device

– Restart your Mac

– Launch ‘Activity Monitor’ (Applications> Utilities> ‘Activity Monitor’), click the ‘View’ drop-down desktop menu and select ‘All Processes’. Type ‘apogeepopup’ in the searchbar in the upper right-side corner of Activity Monitor. Once you see ‘ApogeePopup’ displayed in the list, highlight it and force-quit the process by clicking the ‘X’ button in the upper left-side corner of Activity Monitor. Wait a few seconds and you should see the popups again after adjusting input/output level.

 

*Note for Duet Firewire and Ensemble Firewire customers*

There was a known issue with pop-ups not working for Duet Firewire and Ensemble Firewire when using any version of Mac OS 10.8. It is recommended that you use either a version of Mac OS earlier than 10.8 or later than 10.9.

 

 

Apogee Maestro crashes when I launch it

If Apogee Maestro 2 is crashing every time you try to launch it, follow the steps below:

 

 

– Quit Apogee Maestro.

– Go to your Applications folder and locate the ‘Apogee Maestro 2’ icon.

– Click once on the icon and then hold down the Command key and press ‘i’ for ‘Get Info’.

– In the ‘Get Info’ window, check the ‘Open in 32-bit mode’ checkbox.

– Close the Get Info window and relaunch Apogee Maestro.

Symphony I/O: No loop sync option in Maestro

The Loop Sync option in the Apogee Maestro 2 software’s System Setup tab will disappear under certain conditions.

 

1) Loop Sync is not available when Symphony I/O is in Standalone or USB AIM.

2) When in Symphony AIM, if a legacy converter is connected to the other port on the Symphony64PCI or Thunderbridge card, Loop Sync will disappear.

  • The legacy converters affected are AD-16x, DA-16x, Rosetta-200, and Rosetta-800 with the x-symphony option card installed.

If you need to change this setting, you will need to quit the Maestro software, then change your setup to avoid one of the conditions listed above. Reopen Maestro and the loop sync option will reappear.

 

How do I find the Maestro software on your website?

The Apogee Maestro 2 software is not on the Apogee website as a separate file. Instead, it is installed with the software package for your Apogee interface.

For example, if you download and install the Duet for iPad & Mac software, Maestro 2 will automatically be installed and placed in your Applications folder.

This is true for any Apogee interface software. You can find the appropriate software for your Apogee interface by going to the support section of our website:

http://www.apogeedigital.com/support

 

What is the Group function in Apogee Maestro 2?

Apogee’s Maestro applications comes with the ability to “group” your input(s) together to accurately make adjustments to your input level across many channels at once.

Whether using a stereo microphone pattern (XY, spaced pair, MS, ORTF) with a pair of microphones, or stereo microphone (RODE NT4, AT4050ST) adjusting the input levels for multiple inputs can be a tedious process.

Simply click the group box on the input tab in Maestro, and assign the intended channel(s) to any of the available groups. Both Instrument, and Mic channels can have group assignments.

 

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Mic Pre Module Frequently Asked Questions

The Mic Pre module provides your Symphony I/O with up to 8 mic preamps to your system. Here are answers to some common questions our customers have about the Mic Pre module:

 

Q. Does it add 8 additional channels to my system?

A. No. It only provides the option of selecting a mic pre to your existing card in slot 1.

For example: If you have an 8×8 module in slot 1 of your Symphony I/O, this provides you with 8 channels of analog line-level input. If this is the only card you have installed, you’d have to use external mic preamps to connect microphones to this system.

By adding a Mic Pre module in slot 2, this provides those 8 channels with high-quality mic preamps internally instead. Whether to use your 8 analog inputs as line-level or mic preamps is selectable in the Maestro 2 software’s Input screen.

 

Q. Do I plug my mic into one of the four ¼” inputs on the Mic Pre module? What are they for?

A. These ¼” inputs are for connecting high impedance sources such as an electric guitar, bass guitar, or keyboards to the Mic Pre card. It makes it convenient to connect these ¼” sources to the Symphony instead of using an adapter to plug into the XLR input of the card in Slot 1. Enable these in the Maestro 2 software’s Input screen by selecting “Instrument” as the channel’s Analog Source.

 

Q. What are the Inserts Send/Return for? How do you use them? Where is the insert point?

A. This is a hardware insert for the Microphone Preamps. They are used to insert additional equipment such as Compressors and Equalizers to your input path. You turn Inserts On/Off via the Maestro 2 software’s Input screen, and the insert option is only visible on channels that have the source set to “Mic” or “Instrument”. The insert point is after the preamp and high-pass filter but before the A/D conversion stage.

 

Q. Can I use the Mic Pre module with the 2×6 analog card or the 16 Digital In + 16 Analog Out card (sometimes called the 16ch D/A card)?

A. No. The Mic Pre module cannot be used with the 2×6 analog card or the 16 digital in + 16 analog out card because they do not have at least 8 channels of analog input available.

 

Q. Can I use the Mic Pre module with the 16×16 analog I/O card or 16 Analog In + 16 Digital Out card?

A. Yes. The first 8 channels of the 16 input channels can be set as “Mic” via the Maestro 2 software’s Input screen, and the channels 9-16 are limited to line-level.

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.