Motu or PreSonus ?

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by K.G, Jun 6, 2007.

  1. K.G macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2007

    I am decideing on a new soundcard for my MacBook and have come down to selection Motu or Presonus. is anyone of you useing one of their products.
    (I am between FirePod/Firestudio or Motu 8pre )
    any word on their drivers. comment on comvinient of use. anything?

  2. scottlinux macrumors 6502a


    Sep 21, 2005
    MOTU is a rock solid industry standard sort of brand. And they love Mac.
  3. K.G thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2007
  4. e-clipse macrumors 6502


    Jan 28, 2006
    Audio quality through AD to DA conversion and mic pres are identical in overall quality between the 2 companies.

    MOTU works closely with Apple to make sure their equipment and software works well on Macs, both old and new. Their gear is pettier IMHO.

    PreSonus works great! It also has a cheaper price of 499 per 8 channel Firepods, which can be daisy chained for 16 tracks or more.

    This is my opinion along with the opinion of Nashville Producer/Engineer and friend, Vaughn Skow, who can be found reviewing PreSonus gear on the PreSonus website.
  5. K.G thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2007
    is there any difference for computer,when converters are daysi chained via firewire or adat?
  6. scottlinux macrumors 6502a


    Sep 21, 2005
    MOTU has been around a long time. The 828mkII is perhaps their most popular box. There are interviews out there with lots of big name folks who use MOTU. Search google...
  7. K.G thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 6, 2007

    Is somene working with Reaper on Macbook? I just dowloaded a free version and gonna test it out.
    peopel ar saying good things about it on other forums,tough mac version seems to be bit left behind...compered to the PC one.

    and there is still a question about difference in daysi chaining vie firewire or adat.
    help me out
  8. longofest Editor emeritus


    Jul 10, 2003
    Falls Church, VA
    I have an 828 mk1, working with DP (began with DP 3, upgraded to 4, and now use 5).

    I used to do more with digital audio, and I really liked my 828. Their newer stuff really shows promise as well, although I haven't had personal experience.

    If I get back into recording more at some point (which I hope to do someday), assuming there isn't the next best thing, I'll probably go with an 8pre.
  9. gvdv macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2007
    I'm having this dilemma, too.

    Specifically, I'm down to trying to decide between the Motu 828 MKII or the Presonus Firestudio. I was going to buy the RME Fireface 800, but have decided that I cannot afford this at the moment.

    It seems to me that there are advantages and disadvantages to each of these two units.

    For example,
    The Motu has 2 mic. preamps/instrument inputs (XLR/TRS combo), and 8 balanced/unbalanced TRS

    The Presonus has 2 instrument inputs, 8 line inputs ,and EIGHT microphone preamps. On the other hand, the Presonus appears to have one, dedicated input/output that shares S/PDIF and MIDI duties, while the Motu handles these with separate sets of inputs and outputs.

    Another issue which is relevant, and which I was reading about on the forums on Presonus's homepage, is that Presonus hasn't apparently updated its drivers for many, many months. And now they even have a new product out, called the Studio Tube.

    See this here

    There has been much consternation over Presonus's lack of responsiveness in producing a new driver. I even saw a Beta driver on one site (possibly the one at the above link).

    Motu's drivers are supposed to be rock solid with Mac and very good with PC's.

    Is my understanding accurate of the differences and relative advantages/disadvantages of the flexibility of hardware options of the Firestudio and 828 MKII?

  10. netcastle macrumors member

    Aug 6, 2007
    Echo Audio makes better products than both of these companies (and I have experience with all three). I think the Presonous firepod and firebox have better sound than the MOTU's, which sound like crap IMHO. The MOTU's have excellent integration with the Mac, but the MOTU mixing isn't as intuitive as the Echo products. Presonous doesn't have very good software either. Still if you are using something like Logic, the included software doesn't matter much. However, if you are doing any sort of routing with your audio interface, the Echo has the best included mixing capabilities. Overall, the sound of the Echo is superior to the other two brands, it is in the same price range and it has better included software. Expand your horizons and give Echo products a look. Definitely a better value for your money. You can find in dept reviews on all of these products in Sound on Sound online.

    This is not a Echo plug. I just love my Echo (AudioFire 12)
  11. gvdv macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2007
    Thanks for this, I'll definitely take a look.
  12. gotzero macrumors 68040

    Jan 6, 2007
    Mid-Atlantic, US
    I am a big Apogee/MOTU fan, and then my production partner got a Firepod... is a killer box for like $300, and I honestly cannot find a reason not to recommend it. Do I think the others are nicer, yes? Worth the difference? Absolutely not if it is will keep you from recording! Get a Firepod and get out there!
  13. 3rdpath macrumors 68000


    Jan 7, 2002
    2nd star on the right and straight till morning
    i think either product will do quite well for macbook recording.

    i do have extensive experience with MOTU products( though i don't use their I/O's now) and know their drivers are rock solid and their products are generally well-built and reliable.

    the differences between the converters are subjective at best( you'll notice in every audio forum that pretty much everyone thinks their gear is the best) and the differences are marginal at most price points.

    there's been many huge selling or critically acclaimed releases recorded with low-priced consumer grade just get the box that has the I/O's you need and set the world on fire.
  14. gvdv macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2007
    I think your advice to get the box that has the I/O's one needs, when all other factors are equal, is very sage.

    So, I went out and bought the Firestudio, read the instructions twice and followed them carefully to install the drivers, and then plugged in the unit. But I can't get any sound in Garage Band, so I'm posting a separate thread about this if anyone can help me out with computer set up.

  15. paul.b.davis macrumors 6502


    Oct 24, 2007
    Over the hills and far away...
    Yeah I love Echo too, I used to have the Idigio IO (PCMCIA Card) for my Powerbook. Sadly, there are no recording interfaces for the ExpressCard/34 yet...

    Looking at the AudioFire 4 for my MBP
  16. Bobbi Flekman macrumors regular

    Jan 14, 2008
    I myself am deciding on an external MIDI/Audio device ,so this interests me. Currently my choices are down to a MOTU 828 MkII or an RME Fireface 400.

    I've read about Presonus as well, but from what I noticed on Google people aren't really jumping for you on it.

    Macbook (not a Pro), so you don't have Firewire 800. As far as I know MOTU doesn't do FW800, so RME mgith also be a good choice. They are about the same in price (some € 700 - € 800). The MOTU 8Pre is a little cheaper, € 550.

    Anyway, going for the MOTU won't hurt.
  17. gvdv macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2007
    If it hadn't been for the expense, I would have gone for the RME Fireface 400;then I noticed that recently the Fireface 800 had gone down in price significantly, putting it within a couple of hundred dollars of the 400. So, if I were you, I'd consider the Fireface 800 if you can afford it because it has more I/O's than the 400.

    The Presonus Firestudio isn't a bad unit; it isn't 192Khz, like the RME's and some other units, but I'm fairly impressed with the quality of the pre's and the deciding factor for me was the fact that it has 8 mic. pre's.

    The Firestudio Project isn't getting great reviews, though.
  18. quixotic macrumors regular

    Aug 4, 2003
    San Francisco, CA
    When I finally get a MBP (waiting on the refresh), I really want an ExpressCard audio interface as well. As I understand it, an ExpressCard will give you the absolute lowest latencies. I dream of being able to play sequences off my MBP while running effects on my bass live, something I've had mixed results with using firewire interfaces (albeit on a PowerBook).

    For my personal needs, I would probably go for the RME. I'm not sure if they are shipping yet, but they do have an expresscard option.

    Otherwise, I used to have a PreSonus, I returned it for the Motu. I liked the Motu much better, I think it's a solid performer all the way around.
  19. Bobbi Flekman macrumors regular

    Jan 14, 2008
    Maybe in the near future. The site that I looked at to make the earlier price comparisons show a € 420,00 difference between the two of them.

    I am not sure whether I need all the inputs though as I only use it for my synthesizers. One of two master controllers talking on different MIDI channels through the MIDI/Audio thing with the laptop to drive the virtual synthesizers. Maybe I will need one mic input to drive a vocoder, but that is it.

    Music recording is done in my home studio for demos and the real stuff in real studios.

    In short, I am looking for purely live/stage equipment.

    But I do admit that I had looked at the Fireface 800 ;)
  20. gvdv macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2007
    There seem to be quite a few two input units with good pre's - at 96KHZ - that are getting very good reviews, so you should have a great deal of choice at affordable prices.

    Have you chosen anything yet?

    Good luck.
  21. Bobbi Flekman macrumors regular

    Jan 14, 2008
    Dood! Are you psychic? :D

    Last saturday I noticed on a Dutch website that they dropped an amazing 50% on the 828 MkII (USB version). From some 950 down to just under 500 Euros. So I ordered it, along with some guitar goodies (Tube Screamer 808 and an E-bow).

    Now only the waiting before my new toys are delivered...
  22. gvdv macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2007
    If only I were psychic :)

    Good luck with your 828 MKII, and let us know how you get on with it.

    (BTW, for all others out there, now that the Firestudio is taking off, there seem to be quite a few Firepods going cheaper on places like ebay. The Firepod itself can now be had new as the FP-10, I believe, and comes bundled with several sets of software. I personally think that the Firestudio is a much better choice).
  23. Bobbi Flekman macrumors regular

    Jan 14, 2008
    The damn thing finally got shipped yesterday thanks to a defiency in the stock of TubeScreamers. Now all is in the hands of the hardly trustworthy postal delivery personnel. Will it be here today? Tomorrow? In the weekends when I am not at work? Who knows... I'm waiting.
  24. Bobbi Flekman macrumors regular

    Jan 14, 2008
    Yay!!!!!! The delivery man is fast today. Got my toys, and unpacked them.

    Hooked it all up and inserted the DVD. Ran the MOTU installer on the disc, rebooted and started the MIDI/Audio Setup in Utilities... Grrrrrrrrr!!!!!!!!!!!!! Not found in the MIDI section! Ok... Go online, register at MOTU, download the new installer, run it, reboot, goto MIDI/Audio Setup.Yay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

    Test 1: Garageband. Does it work? Started and banged a chord on a piano. Tada!!!!!! Noise. Works. But wait! The sound came from the home hifi, not the keyboard amp I hooked up to the MOTU. MIDI/Audio Setup again... Audio tab. Ah! Change the output... Restart GarageBand, bang a chord. Scare the bejeebus outta me... Turn the volume down on the amp. Guess it all works :)

    Test 2: Logic Studio. start up, bang a chord. I see MIDI coming in, I hear sounds from the hifi...Huh? Didn't I just tell Apple to use the MOTU as Audio Interface? Logic Pro->Preferences->Audio... You sneaky devil! Another sound preference thing. Changed that to the MOTU. Restarted Logic. Bang! Yay!!!!!!!! Sound :)

    Test 3: Guitar. Grab the Pod, grab the guitar and hook 'em up. Priiing... Priing... No sound but it is entering the MOTU as I see a meter lighting up on the right. Ah! Stupid, stupid, stupid... Click a track and the red R to make it ready for recording... Priiing...... Priiing... Yay! Noise, again!!!

    Happy :)

    Now some more books to peruse, as the MOTU 828 MkII comes with a big book. The cat will be happy as she can fall asleep on my lap while studying.
  25. DJJONES macrumors 6502

    Mar 9, 2008
    Newengland usa!
    i would go with motu! i currently dont own a mac but i own a motu traveler running on a pc with vista and its been amazing handdown and i havent had any issues with it what so ever not even once. i have also heard that motu interfaces are better for mac ive read this on a few audio forums. also sound quality on my traveler is as flat and unaltered as can be. the preamps are very nice.

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