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Customer Reviews 68 Reviews

4.59 out of 5 stars

by T. J (3/31/2015):

You can't use the built in output option in ProTools playback engine with the Apollo… Read more

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Apollo 16. The New Standard in Professional High-Resolution Audio Recording.

Apollo 16 is Universal Audio’s flagship 24-bit/192 kHz audio interface, delivering world-class conversion with 16 x 16 analog I/O — twice the analog connectivity of the original Apollo model. This uncompromising FireWire/Thunderbolt-ready interface combines superior sound and flexible routing with powerful onboard UAD-2 QUAD processing. So you can track audio in real time through the full range of classic UAD analog emulation plug-ins — from Neve, Studer, Manley, Lexicon and more** — on both Mac and Windows 7.*

Key Features
  • UA’s flagship FireWire/Thunderbolt-ready audio interface for Mac and Windows 7*
  • Includes “Realtime Analog Classics Plus” plug-in bundle.
  • Realtime UAD-2 QUAD processing for low-latency (sub-2ms) tracking and mixing w/ UAD Powered Plug-Ins**
  • Thunderbolt Option Card for next-generation connectivity to compatible Macs (sold separately)
  • Four stereo Cue mixes with fully assignable outputs
  • Cascade up to four Thunderbolt-equipped Apollos and six total UAD-2 devices — adding I/O and DSP as needed
  • Virtual I/O feature for Realtime UAD Processing of virtual instruments and DAW tracks
  • Includes dedicated XLR monitor outs and stereo AES-EBU digital I/O
  • 16 x 16 analog I/O via DB-25 connectors — ideal for mixing consoles, outboard preamps, etc.
  • Full recall of interface settings in DAW sessions via Console Recall plug-in (VST, RTAS, AU, AAX 64)
  • Full compatibility with UAD-2 DSP Accelerator systems
  • Flex Routing offers assignable headphone outputs, selectable pre/post Aux sends, headphone bus routing.
  • PT Mode allows easy insertion of outboard analog hardware in Pro Tools**

World-Class 24-bit/192 kHz Conversion
Apollo 16 brings a true “no compromise” approach to every aspect of its audio signal path. Building upon decades of UA hardware expertise, it features meticulous analog circuit design, top-end converters, and DC-coupled outputs — providing the lowest THD and highest dynamic range of any converter in its class. Specifically, the Apollo 16’s deep, wide soundstage, and its exceptionally open and transparent sound, makes it the ideal centerpiece for professional recording studios.

Realtime UAD Plug-In Processing for
Tracking, Mixing, and Mastering
With its standard UAD-2 QUAD processing onboard, Apollo 16 allows recording in real time through UAD Powered Plug-Ins — with as low as sub-2ms latency — so you can monitor, audition, and “print” audio through stunning analog emulations from Ampex, Lexicon, Manley, Neve, Roland, SSL, Studer, and more.** Better still, Apollo 16's Realtime UAD Processing is also available during mixing and mastering, so that music producers can employ UAD plug-ins (VST, RTAS, AU, AAX 64) throughout the creative process.

High-speed Thunderbolt
Connection to your Mac

Apollo 16 offers compatibility with Thunderbolt technology on Macs via a user-installable dual-port Thunderbolt Option Card (sold separately). Thunderbolt provides greater UAD plug-in instances, improved performance at high sample rates, and reduced UAD plug-in latency. Because Thunderbolt offers many times the bandwidth of FireWire, it allows studios to connect numerous devices in series with the Apollo interface — including hard drives, processors, and additional computer monitors — all with fast, flawless performance.

Hardware Design and Workflow

Apollo 16 boasts straightforward 16 x 16 analog I/O via convenient DB-25 connections — perfect for pairing with mixing consoles, outboard processors, cue/headphone systems, and more. Two Apollo 16 units can be cascaded over MADI for an expanded system with eight UAD processors and 32 x 32 simultaneous analog I/O, capable of handling large professional mixes. The Apollo 16’s enhanced routing capabilities includes four stereo Cue mixes with individually assignable outputs, and a “Virtual I/O” feature that allows Realtime UAD Processing of DAW tracks and virtual instruments.

Apollo 16 boasts numerous design details that give you a fast, natural workflow. Its Monitor outputs are digitally controlled analog, so you don't lose audio resolution when you adjust gain. More than 195 high-visibility LEDs provide full input and output metering, and with zero “hot spots” or light bleed. Finally, standalone operation means that you can use Apollo’s audio connections, and last-used DSP mixer settings, even without a computer connected.

Console Application and Console Recall Plug-In
The Console application is Apollo’s software control interface. Its intuitive, analog console-style design provides “realtime” tracking and monitoring with UAD Powered Plug-Ins — a feature not found in any other interface. Complete Apollo Console setups can be saved as presets, or even saved within your sessions using the Console Recall plug-in (VST, AU, RTAS, AAX 64). This enables hardware recall of all Apollo settings, even months and years after you last opened your session.

Deeper Integration with Pro Tools,
Logic, Cubase and More
Apollo 16’s Core Audio and ASIO drivers ensure compatibility with all major DAWs, including Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Cubase, and more. The included Console application and companion Console Recall plug-in (VST, AU, RTAS, AAX 64) provide control and recall of all interface and Realtime UAD plug-in settings within your DAW sessions, even months and years later. A new “PT Mode” ensures that Pro Tools can take advantage of all 16 analog inputs/outputs for hardware inserts — and maximizes analog I/O in a multi-unit setup.


Apollo 16. Front & Rear Panels.

The Apollo 16 interface places all the most commonly used recording and monitoring features right on the front panel, for fast, direct access. Similarly, its rear panel provides all the dedicated, high-quality I/O needed for a typical production studio.



Basic Setup

This diagram illustrates a basic Apollo 16 system. In this example, only analog devices are connected; digital I/O is not used.


Key points for this example:

  • Either FireWire port can be used for the host computer connection
  • The Monitor outputs are connected to powered monitors (or an amp+speaker system)
  • DB25 audio snakes are used for connections to line-level audio gear
  • Although this example uses XLR connectors, DB25 snakes that terminate to XLR, TRS, or other DB25 connectors can be used


Thunderbolt Setup

This diagram illustrates how Apollo 16 can be connected to a host computer with the Thunderbolt Option Card.


Key points for this example:

  • The Thunderbolt Option Card (not included) must be installed in Apollo 16 to connect via Thunderbolt
  • Either Thunderbolt port can be used for the host computer connection
  • A UAD-2 PCIe card in an external Thunderbolt expansion chassis is daisy-chained to second port in Thunderbolt Option Card
  • Monitors with AES/EBU input are connected to AES/EBU output
  • The “AES/EBU Mirrors Monitor 1-2” option is enabled in Console Settings so Apollo 16’s front panel MONITOR knob can control the volume level of the speakers with AES/EBU input
  • An external FireWire 800 device is connected to Apollo 16 (the Thunderbolt Option Card enables Apollo 16 to behave as a FireWire 800 hub)
  • Either FireWire port can be used for the external FireWire hard drive connection


Multi-Unit Setup – FireWire Host Connection

This diagram illustrates how two Apollo 16 units are connected together into an aggregated interface for 32 simultaneous analog inputs and 32 simultaneous analog outputs using FireWire to connect to the host computer.


Key points for this example:

  • One unit is designated as the “Monitor” (the master unit – where monitor connections are made)
  • One unit is the “Expander” (the slave unit – with higher numbered I/O)
  • The Monitor unit is connected to the host computer via FireWire 800(either FW port can be used for this connection)
  • One FireWire 800 cable must be connected between the Expander and Monitor units(either FireWire port can be used for this connection)
  • One MADI cable must be connected from the MADI OUT of Expander unit to the MADI IN of Monitor unit



Multi-Unit Setup – Thunderbolt Host Connection

This diagram illustrates how two Apollo 16 units are connected together into an aggregated interface for 32 simultaneous analog inputs and 32 simultaneous analog outputs.


Key points for this example:

  • Both units require the Thunderbolt Option Card to be installed
  • One unit is designated as the “Monitor” (the master unit – where monitor connections are made)
  • One unit is the “Expander” (the slave unit – with higher numbered I/O)
  • The Monitor unit must be connected to the host computer via the Thunderbolt Option Card(either Thunderbolt port can be used)
  • One Thunderbolt cable must be connected between the Expander and Monitor units(either Thunderbolt port can be used)
  • One MADI cable must be connected from the MADI OUT of Expander unit to the MADI IN of Monitor unit

Realtime Analog Classics Plus Bundle


With the Realtime Analog Classics Plus plug-in bundle, you not only get legendary compressors such as the Fairchild 670 Legacy and EQs like the Pultec EQP-1A Legacy, but also stunning guitar and bass amp emulations from Softube, as well as UA’s landmark 610-B Tube Preamp and EQ plug-in.
UA 610-B Tube Preamp and EQ
The 610-B Tube Preamp and EQ plug-in will impart your tracks with the same legendary warmth and character of the classic hardware unit used to track everyone from Duke Ellington to Coldplay. By emulating the entire signal path, including tube amplifiers, transformers, and circuit nonlinearities, the 610-B Tube Preamp and EQ plug-in injects glowing detail and saturation to any signal — whether you’re re-amping or tracking through the 610-B via Universal Audio’s breakthrough Unison™ technology — the first and only way to truly emulate classic analog mic preamp gain stage “sweet spots,” and component-level behaviors at the input stage.

Raw Distortion Plug-In
Modeled from a vintage early-’80s Pro Co Rat, the Raw Distortion plug-in delivers all the gritty dynamic raunch of the legendary stompbox. And with Unison™ technology, you can plug in to Apollo Twin, DUO, or QUAD and experience the same circuit interaction, gain range, and clip points for the true tone, feel, and response of the original hardware.

Softube Amp Room Essentials
Featuring two plug-ins — the Amp Room Half-Stack and the Bass Amp Room 8x10 — Amp Room Essentials gives you guitar and bass tones that can deliver the goods in any genre. Based on a Marshall JCM800, Amp Room Half-Stack yields legendary slabs of molten distortion while Bass Amp Room 8x10 offers powerful tones and features like a blend-able DI. Both plug-ins tout adjustable mic placement for fine-tuning your tones whether you’re recording in real-time or re-amping.
Fairchild 670 (Legacy)
The world’s most coveted compressor, the classic Fairchild 670 tube limiter will give your tracks and mixes unmistakable tube warmth and character. Whether you’re looking for subtle compression on a lead vocal, or grittier textures that can work on guitars, bass, or a drum bus, the Fairchild 670 plug-in will add a classic “glow” to anything you run through it.
UA Precision Enhancer Hz
Expertly dial-in your music’s low-end frequencies with the Precision Enhancer Hz plug-in. Able to yield exacting results with minimal adjustment, the Precision Enhancer Hz can add weight to kick drum samples, fatten up a synth bass, or simply make the low-end of your tracks more audible on smaller speakers.

1176SE/LN Classic Limiting Amplifiers (Legacy)
Get classic, ultra-fast FET compression from the world’s most recognized compressor. The 1176 will impart punch, presence, and character as well as its signature distortion overtones on drums, vocals, guitars, and bass. The 1176SE and its later LN version have graced countless recordings, from Led Zeppelin, the White Stripes, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Pultec Pro Equalizers (Legacy)
Universal Audio’s Pultec Pro Legacy plug-in combines the Pultec MEQ-5 Midrange Equalizer and the Pultec EQP-1A Program Equalizer, two of the most sought-after hardware EQs, into a single plug-in. The MEQ-5 EQ section allows you to boost and cut midrange bands with the same silky smoothness and personality of the original hardware while the EQP-1A imparts warm analog character to a single track or an entire mix — even when bypassed.
Teletronix LA-2A Classic Leveling Amplifier (Legacy)
With its gentle, program dependent optical compression and meticulously designed tube amplifier, the LA-2A is the go-to compressor for professional mixers around the world — especially for vocals. Incredibly easy-to-use Peak Reduction and Gain controls gives you the ideal optical compression sound for vocals, bass, drums and more.
CS-1 Precision Channel
Featuring the EX-1 EQ/Compressor, the DM-1 and DL-1L Delay Modulators, and the RS-1 Reflection Engine, the CS-1 Channel Strip provides all the tools you need for recording and mixing in one simple plug-in. With a unique smoothing algorithm for all controls and DSP conserving bypass switches built-in, the CS-1 packs a whopping punch into a small package.
RealVerb Pro
RealVerb Pro is a flexible, natural sounding reverb that is based on our own unique set of algorithms. Allowing you to design the room just as you hear it, the RealVerb Pro goes beyond the barriers of simply big/small or dark/bright, giving you our trademark, distortion-free, smoothing diffusion control and ultra-long reverb tail.



What is Apollo 16?

Apollo 16 is UA’s flagship audio interface, with 16 channels of analog inputs/outputs and Realtime UAD Processing. Apollo 16’s onboard UAD-2 QUAD processor allows it to run the full library of UAD-2 plug-ins — both in real time and in standard UAD-2 mode (inside your DAW). Apollo 16 connects to modern Macs and Windows 7 PCs via FireWire 800. A Thunderbolt Option Card (sold separately) allows Apollo 16 to connect to the latest generation of Macs via Thunderbolt.

How does Apollo 16 compare to the original Apollo?

The original Apollo was hailed as a breakthrough for its exceedingly open, natural sound quality. Apollo 16 uses the same A/D and D/A converters as the original Apollo, but offers 2X the analog connectivity via professional DB-25 connectors. The Apollo 16 also features slightly revised analog circuitry, including DC-coupled outputs. And the Apollo 16 is available with UAD-2 QUAD processing only, whereas the original Apollo is available with either UAD-2 DUO or UAD-2 QUAD processing onboard.

Does Apollo 16 work on Windows 7?

Yes, Apollo 16 is Mac and Windows 7 compatible, 64-bit compatible, and works with many different DAW applications. Windows 8 is not currently qualified, but initial reports are that UAD/Apollo software does work.

Which interface makes the most sense for me, the original Apollo or Apollo 16?

It really comes down to the kind of work you are doing, the gear you have, and the connectivity you want. Both products offer class-leading sound quality, sub-2ms tracking with UAD Powered Plug-Ins, and multiple connectivity options (FireWire 800 and/or Thunderbolt).

You can think of the original Apollo like a “swiss army knife,” with four clean, ultra-transparent mic preamps, two instrument inputs, two headphone outputs with individual control, and rear-panel connections including ADAT S/MUX & S/PDIF — so it’s got everything most songwriters/producers/remixers need to record great music, all in a single box.

Apollo 16 features 16 x 16 analog inputs/outputs via DB-25 connections, but doesn’t have mic preamps, headphone outputs, or direct instrument (Hi-Z) inputs — so it’s ideal for project and professional studios that already have an investment in outboard equipment like mic pres, cue/headphone amps, summing mixers, and/or a mixing console.

What are UAD Powered Plug-Ins?

UAD Powered Plug-Ins offer warm sonic qualities and character not found in other audio plug-ins. Our software engineering group includes some of the world’s leading DSP authorities, who undertake thorough physical modeling of classic audio hardware. This process means that we essentially “rebuild” classic analog gear in the digital world. So UAD plug-ins not only sound like the original vintage hardware; they behave like the original devices, at even the most extreme settings.

How many plug-ins can I run on Apollo 16?

The number varies depending on your system and how it’s configured. For a complete breakdown of UAD Powered Plug-Ins instance counts, check out the UAD Instance Chart.

What plug-ins ship with the Apollo and how do I add more plug-ins?

Apollo 16 ships with the Analog Classics bundle, which includes Legacy versions of the 1176LN, 1176SE, Teletronix LA-2A, Pultec EQP-1A & UA RealVerb (a $400 value). The UA online store has a growing library of plug-ins from brands including Studer, Lexicon, Manley, dbx, SSL, Neve, Roland and many more. So you can audition and purchase plug-ins as you go.

How does recording UAD Powered Plug-Ins on input differ from mixing with UAD plug-ins in the DAW?

Apollo’s included Console application is a virtual mixing console that enables you to insert UAD plug-ins as you record into your DAW (this is what we call "Realtime UAD Processing"). The Console application also has many powerful routing and monitoring capabilities that make collaborative recording sessions more seamless. Mixing and mastering with UAD plug-ins is the same as with any other UAD DSP Accelerator system. Simply pull up a plug-in in your DAW on the track you need, and you’re good to go.

Will multi-tracking with UAD Powered Plug-Ins cause the inputs to lose phase coherency?

Apollo has input delay compensation to ensure that all inputs are phase-aligned. You can initiate input delay compensation from the Settings menu of the Console application. This feature ensures that all of your inputs are phase-aligned when recording multi-channel material like drums, or when using multi-micing techniques. If you are not recording multi-channel material, turn input delay compensation off.

I already own a UAD-2 PCIe card and/or UAD-2 Satellite FireWire unit. Can I add Apollo 16 to that system?

Yes, Apollo 16 works just like any other UAD-2 device, whereby you can add Apollo 16 to a “group,” and the plug-ins will be authorized for all UAD devices in the group (including Apollo 16). Groups can contain up to four devices.

Can I combine two Apollo 16 interfaces together in the same computer?

Yes, you can cascade two Apollo 16 interfaces on a qualified Mac or Windows 7 computer, giving you a professional system with 32 x 32 channels of analog I/O, plus dedicated XLR monitor outs. One of the cool features of Apollo 16 is that two units can work together via MADI as a single system — integrating a single Monitor section, four Cue mixes, and two Aux buses of both units via the Console application.

I notice Apollo 16 has MADI I/O. Can I connect Apollo 16 to other MADI devices?

No, Apollo 16 cannot be used as a converter or processor with other MADI devices. Apollo 16's MADI I/O is used exclusively for routing audio between multiple Apollo 16 units when they are cascaded in a multi-unit configuration (see above).

Can I use an original Apollo and an Apollo 16 together in the same computer?

No, combining the original Apollo and the Apollo 16 in a single system is not supported. It is therefore better to build a system with two Apollo 16s, or two original Apollo units. You should not “mix and match” Apollo and Apollo 16 devices.

Can I get low-latency UAD plug-in performance with virtual instruments?

As of UAD software v7.0, both Apollo and Apollo 16 have a feature called Virtual I/O. This feature allows you to route the output of a virtual (software) instrument, or any other DAW track, directly into Apollo’s Console application — adding Realtime UAD plug-ins to these sources. Virtual I/O reduces the inherent latency associated with UAD plug-ins inserted on a virtual instrument or other track in the DAW.

How many UAD plug-ins can I use on Virtual I/O channels?

Each Virtual I/O channel in Console has four insert slots for UAD plug-ins, just like the analog and digital inputs. Virtual I/O channels are subject to the same UAD DSP constraints as other inputs in the Apollo Console software. There are other details on this feature, which you can read about in the owner’s manual.

Is Pro Tools 11 AAX support available?

Yes. Read more here

What are the advantages of using Thunderbolt as opposed to FireWire?

Thunderbolt provides greater UAD plug-in instances, improved performance at higher sample rates, and reduced UAD plug-in latency in the DAW versus Apollo 16's standard FireWire connection.

How do I add Thunderbolt to Apollo 16?

Apollo or Apollo 16 can be upgraded with the Thunderbolt Option Card for $499 MAP USD. The update is very simple; just remove two screws on the back of Apollo unit, remove the blank plate, insert the card, and replace the two screws.

What if I want/need to add UAD plug-in processing power to an Apollo 16 that has the Thunderbolt Option Card installed?

In this scenario, we recommend adding a UAD-2 PCIe card to the system via a Sonnet or Magma PCIe-to-Thunderbolt chassis. This will give you the lowest possible latencies and maximum performance.

Got questions? Contact us by Submitting a Help Request.



1 of 19
  • Dave Gale

    Absolute Music Solutions

    "I just can’t recommend Universal Audio Apollo series highly enough. Their staggeringly good quality conversion, coupled with build quality to put other companies to shame, is refreshing. And the plug-ins! Oh, the plug-ins!"

    Mick Guzauski

    (Daft Punk, Mariah Carey, Eric Clapton)

    "[The Apollo] has probably some of the better preamps I've ever heard -- a lot of headroom and very quiet at high-gains. Also the converters; they're really just sweet sounding."

    Hugh Robjohns

    (Sound on Sound)

    “…The Apollo is a very attractive proposition with no direct competition. It was well worth the wait…”

    The Glitch Mob

    "The Apollo is arguably the best I/O we've ever used, and we've tried them all. It has an incredibly clean, transparent and accurate sound."

    Fab Dupont

    (Jennifer Lopez, Santigold, Mark Ronson)

    "I knew about the ingredients of Apollo, but this is truly a special dish. The Apollo just set a new standard of excellence for audio interfaces, in terms of both its sound and its feature set."

  • Justin Niebank

    (Taylor Swift, Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts)

    "The build on [the Apollo] construction-wise is unbelievable. It's head and shoulders above all the other interfaces that I've used in the price range, or even more expensive."

    Ariel Rechtshaid

    (Vampire Weekend, Usher, Plain White T's)

    "[The Apollo] allows me to record anywhere and get the funky analog sound that I love from traditional studios, in far less traditional locations."

    Michael Romanowski

    (Jacqui Naylor, Third Eye Blind, Pat Monohan)

    "I know that all the hardware, the mic pres, and the converters that back [the Apollo] up are top quality and I can count on the sound. I know what I'm getting and I can appreciate that a lot."

    Buddy Miller

    (Robert Plant, Emmylou Harris, ABC's "Nashville")

    "[The Apollo] sounds great and the low latency is a big deal. I like being able to record through the UA plug-ins because they sound like the hardware.”

    Eli Janney

    (Jet, Ryan Adams, Wilco)

    "[The Apollo] is one of my favorite pieces of gear that's come out in the past few years really. Now you have, in this one unit, so many features that people normally would have to buy multiple units for."

  • Joey Waronker

    (Atoms for Peace, Beck, Other Lives)

    "The Apollo's ability to do low latency; I mean that's the whole ballgame right there."

    Neal Cappelino

    (Alison Krauss, Brad Paisley, Joan Osborne)

    "The idea that I can bring [the Apollo] with me and always have reliable mix platform is important to me."

    Pro Audio Review

    “Apollo is, by all accounts, elite analog hardware wrapped around UA’s beloved UAD Powered Plug-ins.”

    Darwin Grosse

    (Recording Magazine)

    “I can’t imagine anyone not finding the Apollo a great upgrade to an existing system. It’s solid, flexible, and sounds great regardless of the source material….Universal Audio gets an “A” grade in my book, and the Apollo is an easy recommendation.”

    Jim James

    My Morning Jacket

    "The UAD Powered Plug-ins collection is such a great tool kit. So many tools under one roof and all at your fingertips in a fraction of a second."

  • DJ Richard Devine

    “I am totally blown away by the Apollo. Its stunning sound quality and the way you can use the UAD plug-ins in real-time is pure genius. It’s going to be the centerpiece of my new studio.”

    Ronnie Vanucci

    The Killers

    "The UAD plug-ins allow us [The Killers] to get into the wheelhouse of the sounds of yesteryear. It's another instrument in the band these days."

    Craig Anderton

    Electronic Musician

    "…With seriously excellent build quality and sound quality, and it’s no wonder that Apollo has gotten so much attention from the cognoscenti.”

    Gareth Jones

    (Depeche Mode, Erasure, Grizzly Bear)

    "Along with the Apollo Interface, the Sonnox Oxford EQ allows me to do valuable sound sculpting when tracking. Thanks for another great tool."

    Greg Walker

    Audio Technology Magazine

    “The Apollo is a great standalone recording solution that gets high marks for its preamps, converters and groundbreaking combination of input Console and UAD-2 plug-in software."

  • Mark Cousins

    (Music Tech UK)

    “…The Apollo is easily the most inspiring audio interface we’ve ever used…”

    Ivan Barias

    (Musiq Soulchild, Faith Evans)

    “The UAD-2 is the 21st century musician's best friend."

    Darrell Thorp

    (Beck, Radiohead, Charlotte Gainsbourg)

    "Knowing the abilities of the DSP and the incredible quality and tonality of the plug-ins, the UAD-2 has become such a first response tool in my everyday recording and mixing."

    Peter Kirn

    Create Digital Music

    "It’s difficult to describe UA’s plug-ins until you’ve tried them. It’s a bit like having chocolate sauce at your disposal, sonically speaking."

    Garrett Haines

    (Tape Op Magazine)

    "Universal Audio’s achievements in capturing the sonics of equalization, transformers, and control interaction need to be recognized. This goes beyond software models; they’re getting to the heart of the gear."

  • Matt Knobel

    (Lenny Kravitz)

    "The family of effects that I have with my UAD-2 is incomparable with any other when it comes to working in the box yet having an 'out of boxy experience'."

    Paul Moak

    (Third Day, Matthew Mayfield)

    "The flexibility is priceless and has won me over on UAD for life. Thanks for making a great product!"

    Jose Cancela & Amy Marie Beauchamp

    (HBO Sports, NFL, NBA)

    “The UAD-2 has time and time again given sterile samples warmth, depth and brilliance."

    Garrett "Jacknife" Lee

    (R.E.M., The Cars)

    "I @#$%ing love my UAD-2 card! Doing my first proper mix [The Cars] with it. Wow! How did i do without it?"

    Greg Parkin

    (Capitol Studios & Mastering)

    “It is fitting that UA continues to provide a platform for our engineers to innovate."

  • Jono Buchanan

    Future Music (UK)

    "The accuracy & quality of [UA's] recent additions [shows] their recreations of classic hardware are only improving."

    Hank Shocklee

    (Public Enemy)

    “I like to use the UAD plug-ins to their extremes and push them to get the crazy sound I use to set my productions apart."

    Ivan Barias

    (Musiq Soulchild)

    "UAD is my new secret weapon in the studio. I get everything to sound the way I always wanted, way before the mixing."

    Ivan Barias

    (Keyshia Cole, 2Pac)

    "Before UAD life in the studio was like television before HD. Everything sounds incredibly detailed now."

    John Paterno

    (Los Lobos, Bonnie Raitt)

    "This [UAD-2] is a 'game changer' for me ... The sound, responsiveness, and detail [of the plug-ins] are great!"

  • Nathaniel Kunkel

    (Lyle Lovett, Nirvana)

    "With the UAD-2, UA has provided something that I have been missing from my plugs for a long time: inspiration."

    J.J. Blair

    (Rod Stewart, George Benson)

    "I was never into mixing completely in the box until I started using UAD cards ... I'm loving it more and more."

    Jim Dalrymple

    (The Loop)

    "[I use] the Fairchild Compressor, Neve 1081, Neve 1073, LA-2A and the 1176 Compressor. They all give you something different."

    Jim Dalrymple


    "While there are a lot of plug-in choices [on the market], I have found none better than Universal Audio."

    Eli Janney

    (Wilco, Wheat)

    "I’m heavily into the [UAD-2] cards. They just sound really, really good ... the new cards give you a lot of horsepower."

  • Vance Powell

    (The Raconteurs, Jars of Clay)

    "The UAD-2 is the first plug-in set that replaces gear I own, hardware-wise, and that's a big deal."

    John Baccigaluppi

    (TapeOp Magazine)

    "[With the UAD-2] ... everything worked perfectly with the sonic quality we’ve come to expect from the UAD series."

    Frank Filipetti

    (James Taylor, Rod Stewart)

    “I wish more companies paid attention to what you guys are doing at UA ... it's right on the money."

    Charlie Clouser

    (NIN, "Saw" Soundtracks)

    "The UAD-2 provides so much DSP that I can really lay the plug-ins on thick without giving it a second thought"

    Nathaniel Kunkel


    "I use my UAD cards every time I mix ... the quality of the plug-ins make mixing 'in the box' not only easier, but really fun."

  • Hank Shocklee

    (Public Enemy)

    "I can surely say that working with the UAD family of plug-ins has greatly increased the sound of my projects"

    David Grissom

    (Mellencamp, Buddy Guy)

    "The UAD-2 plug-ins have become the backbone of my mixes ... I've been able to eliminate my console altogether."

    Stuart Price

    (The Killers)

    "You judge [the UAD-2] by how many people you recommend it to, and everyone I have worked with has now gone and got one."

    Gavin Monaghan

    (The Twang)

    "I'd never even think of tackling a session without UAD plug-ins."

    Rik Simpson


    "The sound of the UAD software is the closest thing in analog modeling ... it actually sounds like the real gear."

  • Frank Filipetti

    (Carly Simon)

    "I go to my UAD plug-ins just as naturally as I do any hardware ... UAD is now an essential part of my mixing arsenal"

    Ryan West

    (Kanye West, T.I., T-Pain)

    "I'm not sure what mathematical voodoo they do over there [at UA], but I like it and I won't mix without it."

    Nathaniel Kunkel

    (James Taylor, Lyle Lovett)

    "The thing that I feel no one's really talking about is that this [the UAD-2] is a paradigm shift."

    Elliot Mazer

    (Neil Young)

    "I can mix anyplace with my UAD-2 SOLO/Laptop. I get to use the same UAD plug-ins on my portable that I use on my big MacPro."

    Ulrich Wild


    "The new UAD-2 cards are extremely powerful ... I completely abandoned analog gear for mixing and I rely heavily on this system"

  • Frank Filipetti

    (Carly Simon, Korn)

    "I don't need anything else to mix with, other than the UAD plug-ins. Everything else I use is hardware."

    Mark Cousins

    (Music Tech UK)

    …A completely integrated solution for recording and mixing powered by some of the best plug-ins money can buy.”

    Paul Moak

    (Third Day, Matthew Mayfield)

    "As an analog junkie and an audiofile, this [UAD-2] is the best of both worlds for me."

    Ryan Hewitt

    (Red Hot Chili Peppers)

    "So now I have my UAD on everything, and I'm using the EMT 140 and the EMT 250 as effects. It's so much easier."

    Neil Mclellan


    "I've recommended the UAD platform to all of my friends, and once they heard it, there was no looking back."

  • John Paterno

    (Los Lobos, Bonnie Raitt)

    "The sound of these [UAD Powered Plug-Ins] will definitely change the way I approach mixing in the computer."

    D. James Goodwin

    (The Bravery)

    "When I finally decided to try the UAD platform, I was immediately floored by the realism. These things sounded amazing."

    Paul White

    (Sound On Sound)

    "UA has given their UAD-2 platform extra appeal with yet more accurate recreations of classic studio hardware ..."

    J.J. Blair

    (Rod Stewart, George Benson)

    "Way to go, Universal Audio! Thanks for helping me achieve the sounds in the box that I really want to hear."

    D. James Goodwin

    (The Bravery)

    "I decided to sell my hardware SPL TD4, and my vintage dbx 160 rack, because the UAD became my go-to choice. Bravo to UA"

  • Ed MacFarlane

    (Friendly Fires)

    "[I use] the 6176 as my preamp & compressor, and I've been using the UAD plug-ins once the track's in the computer."

    Paul White

    (Sound On Sound)

    "[Cooper Time Cube, EMT 250, or FATSO] ... for the real vintage character, I don't think UA have any rivals at the moment."

    D. James Goodwin

    (The Bravery)

    "UAD plug-ins are my new benchmark for how processors should sound, look, and function.”

    Jim Dalrymple

    (The Loop)

    "I find that the UA plug-ins allow me to control that [dynamic] range of frequencies better than anything else."

    JR Hutson

    (Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild)

    "[Once] I got the UAD Powered Plug-Ins, I can get things so much closer to what they're supposed to sound like."

  • Justin Niebank

    (Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts)

    “[W]hen you came out with the UAD-2, I jumped on that, even before the software came out. I adore it.”

    Frederick Norén

    (Sound on Sound)

    "[For DSP-based systems]...the UAD2 platform is a good alternative, with great-sounding, humanely priced plug-ins."

    Roy Davis Jr.

    "A mix is not complete without UAD Powered Plug-Ins on it!!!"

    Eli Crews

    (Electronic Musician)

    "With the UAD-2, Universal Audio has made one of the most attractive plug-in families even harder to live without."

    Cian Ciaran

    (Super Furry Animals)

    "[With the UAD-2] It's like having the right tools to do the right job ... Because you know all the gear's quality."

  • Jason Blum

    (Remix Magazine)

    "The only thing better than UAD plug-ins is more of them."

    Paul Vnuk, Jr.

    (Recording Magazine)

    "The UAD-2 ... is a huge improvement over everything that made the UAD-1 the leader in its class."

    Mike Senior

    (Sound On Sound)

    "UAD-2 is an enormous leap forward from the UAD-1"

    Craig Anderton

    (EQ Magazine)

    "The UAD concept [is] the 21st century equivalent of a rack of special-purpose processors ... maybe even an entire mixer."

    Mike Senior

    (Sound on Sound)

    "Universal Audio are a force to be reckoned with in terms of the quality of their audio processing"

  • Craig Anderton


    "The UAD-2 is much more powerful than the original ... the UAD concept is no longer to just replace a few cool pieces of gear"

    Craig Anderton

    (EQ Magazine)

    "It's the strikingly realistic, and musical, emulations of vintage (and not so vintage) gear [that hooks people on the UAD-2]."

    Barry Rudolph

    (Mix Magazine)

    "The UAD-2 breaks all the UAD-1's limitations ... it's a dream come true for all DAW users.”

    Rob James

    (Resolution Magazine)

    "[UAD Powered Plug-Ins] have more character than many native or TDM plug-ins, while being a great deal more affordable."

    Future Publishing


    "Offering several times the power of the UAD-1, this powered plug-in system is very impressive."

  • Andy Hong


    "I'd have to say that the UAD plug-ins blow similar TDM plug-ins out of the water"

    Jono Buchanan

    (Future Music UK)

    "It's now possible to turn your DAW into a full Neve console, for a fraction of the cost of a real desk."

    David Riggs

    "There is a God and he uses the UAD plugins. The best set of plug-ins anywhere. Period."

    Mike Senior

    (Sound on Sound)

    "The UAD-2 gives access to some of the best-sounding analogue emulation plug-ins available ... a mouth-watering prospect."

    Matt Boudreau

    (Keith Urban)

    "The bottom line is, it's got so much more power ... it allowed me to use whatever plug-in I wanted, whenever I wanted"

  • Carmen Rizzo

    "I make a living with the UA plug-ins, because I use them every single day on every session."

    Geoff Sanoff

    (Pro Sound News)

    "I keep saying to people that plug-ins are only going to get better, and UAD keeps proving me right."

    Matt Knobel

    (Lenny Kravitz)

    "With the UAD-2 , you put it on and it sounds like a Fairchild. It makes it so much easier to get what you're looking for."

User Ratings

  • 1 Star
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  • 4 Star
  • 5 Star
Average Rating (68 Reviews)
    • 1 Star
    • 2 Star
    • 3 Star
    • 4 Star
    • 5 Star
    Sounds great but impractical at times
    by T. J(Tuesday 31 March, 2015)

    You can't use the built in output option in ProTools playback engine with the Apollo 16. This is limiting if you are wanting to record some quick ideas, without the hastle of setting up your whole monitoring system ie: Presonus monitor station etc. The sound is great but not always handy… Read More

    • 1 Star
    • 2 Star
    • 3 Star
    • 4 Star
    • 5 Star
    Sounds great but impractical at times
    by T. J(Tuesday 31 March, 2015)

    You can't use the built in output option in ProTools playback engine with the Apollo 16. This is limiting if you are wanting to record some quick ideas, without the hastle of setting up your whole monitoring system ie: Presonus monitor station etc. The sound is great but not always handy… Read More

    • 1 Star
    • 2 Star
    • 3 Star
    • 4 Star
    • 5 Star
    My best audio interface
    by T. You(Tuesday 31 March, 2015)

    My best audio interface. I like the quality of the plug-in too minds. Easy Operation Read More

    • 1 Star
    • 2 Star
    • 3 Star
    • 4 Star
    • 5 Star
    great plugin
    by y. kim(Tuesday 24 March, 2015)

    great plugin, great sound, great promotion. Read More

    • 1 Star
    • 2 Star
    • 3 Star
    • 4 Star
    • 5 Star
    Great clarity, impressive sound and some of the best PlugIns I've used
    by T. Frazier(Monday 23 March, 2015)

    I recently bought the Apollo 16 and couldn't be more satisfied with the results I've gotten so far. I was using a Saffire Pro 40 and DIGI 002 light piped together to increase channel count and had thought those units sounded good, but when I put my new Apollo 16 into the chain and connected… Read More

Features & Specs
Apollo 16. Features.
Key Features
  • UA’s flagship FireWire/Thunderbolt-ready audio interface for Mac and Windows 7*
  • 16 x 16 analog I/O via DB-25 connectors — ideal for mixing consoles, outboard preamps, etc.
  • Realtime UAD-2 QUAD processing for low-latency (sub-2ms) tracking and mixing w/ UAD Powered Plug-Ins**
  • Thunderbolt Option Card for next-generation connectivity to compatible Macs (sold separately)
  • Four stereo Cue mixes with fully assignable outputs
  • Multi-unit cascading over MADI merges two Apollo 16 units for 32 x 32 analog I/O
  • PT Mode allows easy insertion of outboard analog hardware in Pro Tools**
  • Virtual I/O feature for Realtime UAD Processing of virtual instruments and DAW tracks
  • Includes dedicated XLR monitor outs and stereo AES-EBU digital I/O
  • Includes “Analog Classics” plug-ins, featuring Legacy versions of the LA-2A Classic Audio Leveler, 1176LN Limiting Amplifier, and Pultec EQP-1A EQ
  • Full recall of interface settings in DAW sessions via Console Recall plug-in (VST/RTAS/AU)
  • Full compatibility with UAD-2 DSP Accelerator systems

*Thunderbolt option is Mac-only.
**All trademarks are recognized as property of their respective owners. Individual UAD Powered Plug-Ins sold separately.


System Requirements

FireWire Systems

UAD Powered Plug-Ins version 8

  • (Win) Windows 7 64-Bit Edition w/SP1
  • (Mac) OS X 10.8.5 Mountain Lion, 10.9.x Mavericks, or 10.10.x Yosemite
  • Available FireWire 800 port*
  • 4 gigabytes available disk space
  • Internet connection to download software and authorize UAD plug-ins
  • Compatible VST, Audio Units, RTAS, or AAX 64 plug-in host DAW software

*On Windows systems, a qualified PCIe-to-FireWire adapter card is required.
Visit the product support page for details: Apollo | UAD-2 Satellite


Thunderbolt Systems

UAD Powered Plug-Ins version 8

  • Apple Mac computer with available Thunderbolt or Thunderbolt 2 port
  • Mac OS X 10.8.5 Mountain Lion, 10.9.x Mavericks, or 10.10.x Yosemite
  • 4 gigabytes available disk space
  • Internet connection to download software and authorize UAD plug-ins
  • Compatible VST, Audio Units, RTAS, or AAX 64 plug-in host DAW software
  • Thunderbolt cable (sold separately)



Note: See the Apollo 16 Hardware Manual for complete hardware information.


  • I/O Complement
    • Analog Line Inputs  16
    • Analog Line Outputs  16
    • Analog Monitor Outputs  Two (one stereo pair)
    • AES/EBU  One stereo input, one stereo output
    • FireWire 800 (IEEE 1394b)  Dual ports
    • Thunderbolt (via Thunderbolt Option Card)  Dual ports
    • Word Clock  One input, one output
    • MADI Optical Ports  One input, one output
  • A/D – D/A Conversion
    • Supported Sample Rates (kHz)  44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4, 192
    • A/D Bits Per Sample  24
    • Simultaneous A/D conversion  16 channels
    • Simultaneous D/A conversion  18 channels
    • Analog Round-Trip Latency  1.1 milliseconds @ 96 kHz sample rate
    • Analog Round-Trip Latency with up to four serial UAD Powered Plug-Ins via Console application  1.1 milliseconds @ 96 kHz sample rate

Analog I/O

  • Analog Inputs 1 – 16
    • Dynamic Range  119.25 dB (A–weighting)
    • Signal-to-Noise Ratio  119.25 dB (A–weighting)
    • Total Harmonic Distortion + Noise  -112 dB @ -1 dBFS
    • Common-Mode Rejection Ratio  -75 dB
    • Frequency Response  20 Hz – 20 kHz, ±0.05 dB
    • Channel Separation (Crosstalk)  -138 dB
    • Input Impedance  10 Kilohms
    • Gain Settings  +4 dBu or -10 dBV (reference level is selectable in pairs)
    • Max Input Voltage (Reference Level @ +4 dBu, Balanced)  20.22 dBu
      (18 dBV, 7.94 VRMS, 0 dBFS)
    • Max Input Voltage (Reference Level @ -10 dBV, Balanced)  14.22 dBu
      (12 dBV, 3.98 VRMS, 0 dBFS)
    • Max Input Voltage (Reference Level @ -10 dBV, Single-Ended)  8.22 dBu
      (6 dBV, 2 VRMS, 0 dBFS)
    • Stereo Level Balance  ±0.01 dB
    • Connector Type  Two Female DB25, Tascam wiring
  • Analog Outputs 1 – 16
    • Dynamic Range  118.5 dB (A–weighting)
    • Signal-to-Noise Ratio  118.2 dB (A–weighting)
    • Total Harmonic Distortion + Noise  -107.5 dB @ -1 dBFS
    • Connector Type  Two Female DB25, Tascam wiring
  • Monitor Outputs 1 – 2
    • Dynamic Range  115 dB (A–weighting)
    • Signal-to-Noise Ratio  115 dB (A–weighting)
    • Total Harmonic Distortion + Noise  -105.5 dB @ -1 dBFS
    • Gain Range (Monitor Knob)  -INF to 0 dBFS
    • Connector Type  Two Male Balanced XLR (pin 2 hot)
  • All Analog Outputs
    • Frequency Response 20 Hz – 20 kHz, ±0.05 dB
    • Channel Separation (Crosstalk) -120 dB
    • Output Impedance 600 Ohms
    • Stereo Level Balance ±0.01 dB
    • Gain Settings +4 dBu or -10 dBV (reference level is selectable in pairs)
    • Max Output Voltage (Reference Level @ +4 dBu, Balanced) 20.22 dBu
      (18 dBV, 7.94 VRMS, 0 dBFS)
    • Max Output Voltage (Reference Level @ -10 dBV, Balanced) 14.22 dBu
      (12 dBV, 3.98 VRMS, 0 dBFS)
    • Max Output Voltage (Reference Level @ -10 dBV, Single-Ended) 8.22 dBu
      (6 dBV, 2 VRMS, 0 dBFS)

Digital I/O

    • Connector Type  XLR
    • Format  IEC 60958 Type I
  • MADI
    • Connector Type  Dual Optical SC-Plug (ISO/IEC 9314-3)
    • Format  AES10
    • Supported Modes @ Sample Rates of 88.2 kHz and Higher  Standard, Legacy
  • Word Clock
    • Connector Type  BNC
    • Lock Range  ±0.5% of any supported sample rate
    • Word Clock Input Termination  75 Ohms, switchable
  • Synchronization Sources
    • Internal, Word Clock, AES/EBU


  • Power Supplies  External AC to DC Power Supply Brick (Internal DC to DC Power Supply) 
  • AC Connector Type  IEC Male
  • AC Requirements  100V – 240V AC, 50 – 60 Hz
  • DC Connector Type  XLR 4-Pin Locking Male (Neutrik P/N NC4MDM3-H)
  • DC Requirements  12 VDC, ±5%
  • Maximum Power Consumption  40 Watts (55 Watts when bus powering external Thunderbolt peripheral)


  • Dimensions
    • Width  19”
    • Height  1.75” (1U rack space)
    • Depth, Chassis Only  12.125”
    • Depth, Including Knob & Jack Protrusions  13.75”
    • Shipping Box (Width x Depth x Height)  24” x 17” x 8”
  • Weight
    • Shipping Weight (with box & accessories)  18 pounds
    • Weight (bare unit)  8.7 pounds
  • Package Contents
    • Apollo 16 Audio Interface
    • External Power Supply
    • Apollo 16 Hardware Manual
    • 15’ FireWire 800 cable
    • (2) IEC AC Power Cables (USA & Europe)
    • Set of (4) Rack-Mount Screws
    • Universal Audio Product Catalog


Apollo 16 Hardware Manual

Apollo Software Manual (Thunderbolt)

Apollo Software Manual (FireWire)

UAD Plug-Ins Manual

UAD System Manual

UA Product Catalog