Apple Asteroid?

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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AppleInsider claims to have knowledge of a new audio interface for GarageBand users in the coming months. An audio 'breakout box' of sorts, Asteroid will include two XLR/ TRS audio input connectors, two RCA analog output jacks, and a standard headphone jack. The device reportedly will draw power through a single FireWire 400 port and include a phantom on/off power switch. Developed by portions of the crew originally responsible for Emagic and recently spun into Apple's iPod division, the device is expected to be debuted during the MWSF show in January 2005, along with a revision to the iLife suite of applications, including a new version of GarageBand.

Asteroid will require Mac OS X v10.2.8 or later, iLife ‘04 or later, and a computer with a built-in FireWire port. A forthcoming revision to the Mac OS X Sound Preference Pane will reportedly allow Asteroid to interface with Apple's Soundtrack, Logic, DVD Player, and other third party applications. Meanwhile, revised FireWire Audio sound drivers have already appeared in early versions of the company's Mac OS X 10.3.7 Update.

The device will retail for approximately $129 - $149 and will aggressively target similar products such as M-Aduio's Mobile Pre and Edirol's UA-5 USB Digital Audio Capture device. But even at $149, Asteroid will represent one of the lowest priced FireWire breakout boxes on the market, selling for $250 less than M-Audio's more sophisticated FireWire 410 audio interface.
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,551
1,186
BTW "Asteroid" is just a code name AFAWK



Cool to see more stuff coming from the new "iPod Division." AI has a good track record lately--this sounds true to me.

This is outside my area for sure... what are examples of how a breakout box like this would make GarageBand more useful? What does this do more easily than other methods? Just OS integration? (Not to sneeze at that. Or maybe a massively lower price would be enough :D )

And I know the rumored specs are prelimary... but wouldn't more inputs (like optical) be important? Are those big plugs common for consumers? (But maybe this is "prosumer," not consumer.)
 

Trowaman

macrumors 6502a
Nov 3, 2003
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CD: TX-14
so, is this thing just basically a hub for all your different music cords and feeds them all into your Mac . . . or PC via Firewire?
 

coolfactor

macrumors 601
Jul 29, 2002
4,277
3,786
Vancouver, BC
Trowaman said:
so, is this thing just basically a hub for all your different music cords and feeds them all into your Mac . . . or PC via Firewire?
I think this will be an intro product for a whole line of products, with some getting more advanced features.

I'm confident there will be the "Apple touch" added that the competition hasn't considered yet.
 

orion123

macrumors regular
Jul 19, 2003
100
0
Boston
Is it me or is AppleInsider pulling a MOSR and running an old rumor as their own? Didn't PowerPage run this exact item once last week and again yesterday with more info?

I mean, I totally side with AppleInsider on this, they are trustworthy. I just wish they'd given a nod to O'Grady.
 

fatbarstard

macrumors member
Dec 2, 2003
87
0
New Zealand
Next Thing You Know....

This is very minor news.... unless you are 17 and madly writing your opus to take over the world on a synthesiser (s******).... :D
 

KC9AIC

macrumors 6502
Jan 31, 2004
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Tokyo, Japan or Longview, Texas
This device would absolutely rock. I've wanted a way to connect Shure SM-58 mics with XLR connectors into my iBook for recording vocals. An Apple firewire device would skirt the issue of not having sound inputs and having a crappy built-in mic.
 

Mac-Xpert

macrumors 6502
Dec 18, 2003
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The Netherlands
Macrumors said:
The device reportedly will draw power through a single FireWire 400 port and include a phantom on/off power switch
I wonder if that's possible. Most microphones that use phantom power, require a 48v power-supply. Is it possible to get that kind of power from a firewire connection?
 

Mike Teezie

macrumors 68020
Nov 20, 2002
2,205
1
Trowaman said:
so, is this thing just basically a hub for all your different music cords and feeds them all into your Mac . . . or PC via Firewire?
Grossly over simplified explanation: A microphone's signal is too weak, and needs a preamp to boost its signal to line level.

Same for guitar or bass.

This would let you use two mics/guitars/basses whatever.

I would buy one of these the instant they were announced, even though I'm a Digidesign/Pro Tools guy.
 

tacomancini

macrumors newbie
May 22, 2002
15
0
Pittsburgh
Perfect for Podcasters

Wow, this sounds perfect for podcasts. The latency in usb is just not good if you need to monitor your mixes. I would also like to see a firewire mic made similar to the Micflex.
 

asif786

macrumors 65816
Jun 17, 2004
1,027
0
London, UK.
Does anyone know...

...I'm trying to hide all my wires from my iMac. So far, I've only got one wire (apart fom power) coming out of it - it's an apple thin firewire cable that leads to a firewire hub behind my bed.

the firewire hub is plugged into my ipod, lacie drive. so, could i think plug this device (asteroid) into my hub, and then plug my speakers into the asteroid?

I know it's abit of a high price point just to get rid of one speaker cable tho.. :S
 

cb911

macrumors 601
Mar 12, 2002
4,119
3
BrisVegas, Australia
i'm not a musicy type person at all... but i was going to say that Asteroid is a really cool name for a piece of hardware!! (or software for that matter.) :D

but it seems that it's just a codename... :(

well Doctor Q might like the fact that the other codename was Q97... ;)
 

backspinner

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2002
547
0
Eindhoven
Mac-Xpert said:
I wonder if that's possible. Most microphones that use phantom power, require a 48v power-supply. Is it possible to get that kind of power from a firewire connection?
Yes, it's called a switched mode power supply (with very good filtering) that will transform a low voltage to a higher one. My guess is that the firewire power supply is about 12V on laptops.
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,551
1,186
asif786 said:
Does anyone know...

...I'm trying to hide all my wires from my iMac. ... I know it's abit of a high price point just to get rid of one speaker cable tho.. :S
I'm not clear on this device, but it does sound like it could be a way to (among other things) get audio to speakers via Firewire.

But there's also AirPort Express with AirTunes. That's wireless audio to your speakers--ONLY for music. But other sound still comes out of your iMac's own internal speakers (or speaker--if it's a G4), and depending on your needs, that might be just fine for non-music stuff.
 

cluthz

macrumors 68040
Jun 15, 2004
3,118
3
Norway
Thought that apple wasn't allowed to produce audio production hardware, due to the apple corp agreement.
Anyway, this one looks nice, I hope it also gets a midi in/out too!

Especially the phantom power is nice!