Apogee released the February 2022 update (Release 1.2, part II according to the internal chronology) for the Symphony Desktop audio interface. The major highlights in this release are the included Apogee Control 2 software and Symphony Desktop firmware updates which deliver the Opto-3A, ModEQ 6 & ModComp to Hardware DSP, the Apogee Channel FX plugin and all Optical Inputs (8 when using ADAT, 4 when using SMUX, 2 when using S/PDIF).
In simpler terms, Apogee brought its entire DSP FX suite to the Symphony Desktop and its touch screen! Consequently, the complete DualPath workflow with Hardware DSP and Native versions of all Apogee FX plugins has been enabled. The update includes said 6 plug-ins in hardware DSP format free of charge. When you purchase Symphony Desktop, you can also get the entire suite of Apogee FX DualPath Native plugins at a 50% discount. This way, you can access the complete hybrid DSP / Native plugin workflow. Additionally, customers who already own the Apogee FX bundle can have 50% off the Clearmountain Series plug-ins instead. For the time being, Clearmountain plugins are Native only.
Apogee Symphony Desktop 1.2 update
So far, the Apogee Symphony Desktop is the only audio interface that lets you record, monitor, mix and master using the Apogee plugin DSP on your interface and the same native plugins in your DAW. This has several advantages, such as low-latency recording and monitoring with effects, freeing up CPU for third-party effects and instruments during mixing, and the ability to use the same effects without the audio interface at hand. Universal Audio also has that going for its Apollos, but hybrid mixing is exclusive to the UAD LUNA DAW. Likewise, AVID offers hybrid mixing for Pro Tools. Democratically, Apogee opened up hybrid mixing to all DAWs.
At the moment, the DualPath workflow includes 6 Apogee plug-ins, accessible on the Symphony Desktop touchscreen and in your DAW:
- Symphony ECS Channel Strip – EQ, Compression and Saturation
- Pultec EQP-1A – Program Equalizer
- Pultec MEQ-5 – Mid-range Equalizer
- Opto-3A – Vintage Compressor/Limiter
- ModEQ 6 – Modern 6 Band Visual Equalizer
- ModComp – Modern Visual Compressor/Limiter
While Hardware DSP versions of Apogee FX plugins are included for free in this upgrade, Native versions of Apogee FX plugins (except Symphony ECS Channel Strip native, which comes with Symphony Desktop) are sold separately. It’s all a little difficult to comprehend, but a bit of reading gets you the gist of it. I think Apogee is providing good value and has a solid business model in place with plenty of development potential.
If you are interested in the Apogee Symphony Desktop and related 50% off discount for Native plug-ins, you can purchase the interface from the affiliate widget below:
Apogee Symphony Desktop – More information
- Apogee Symphony Desktop February 2022 update
- Apogee 50% off discount for Native plug-ins
- More Apogee news