Apollo x8

Apollo x8

  • Overview
  • Included Plug-Ins
  • Features
  • Customer Reviews
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Elite Audio Conversion with Four Unison Mic Preamps, HEXA Core Processing, and Surround Sound.

Apollo x8 allows music producers, project, and post-production studios to track, overdub, and mix with new world-beating A/D and D/A conversion, HEXA Core UAD plug-in processing, Dual-Crystal clocking, and 7.1 surround sound monitoring — all in a sleek rackmount Thunderbolt 3 audio interface for Mac or PC.

Built upon UA’s 60-year heritage of audio craftsmanship, this 18 x 24 interface distinguishes itself with four Unison™-enabled mic preamps, providing authentic emulations of preamps from Neve, API, Manley, SSL, and more, plus all-new HEXA Core processing — yielding 50% more DSP for running UAD Powered Plug-Ins in real time.

Record with elite-class A/D and D/A conversion — nearing the widest dynamic range and lowest noise available, at any price

Mix with powerful HEXA Core processing, featuring 6 UAD DSP chips for running more UAD Powered Plug-Ins in real time

Track with near-zero latency through Unison™ preamp emulations from Neve, API, Manley, Helios, Fender, and more

Integrate with high-end commercial systems, via 7.1 surround sound monitoring and selectable +24 dBu headroom

Elite-Class A/D and D/A Conversion

With thousands of chart-topping songs and hundreds of Grammy-winning albums under their belt, Apollo interfaces are no strangers to tracking stellar-sounding records. To improve on the previous generation Apollo interface’s class-leading audio conversion, UA engineers obsessively auditioned the latest A/D and D/A converters — ultimately pairing elite-class 24-bit/192 kHz converters with all-new analog circuitry for an ultra-pristine signal path.

The Apollo X series also introduces new Dual-Crystal clocking — featuring dedicated crystals for 44.1/88.2/176.4k and 48/96/192k sample rates — resulting in stunningly low jitter, measured at less than 10 picoseconds. This translates into pure, artifact-free recordings and solid stereo imaging you can trust.

With 129 dB dynamic range and -119 dB THD+N, Apollo x8’s open, natural sound quality rivals any dedicated high-end converter on the market — regardless of price — and is the perfect starting point for applying UAD processing.

Realtime UAD HEXA Core Processing

Apollo x8 features new HEXA Core processing, with six DSP chips and 50% more UAD plug-in processing power than previous Apollos. This lets you run more UAD plug-ins, whether you’re tracking in real time with channel strips from Neve, Manley, or API, or running high UAD plug-in counts when mixing in your DAW.

From the tube warmth of Pultec EQs on guitars to the musical tube limiting of the LA-2A on vocals, or the pump of a genuine 1176 or Fairchild 670 tube compressor on drums, your recordings will take a giant leap forward with a rich, three-dimensional analog sound that UAD plug‑ins provide.

Unison Technology: The Genuine Sound of Neve, API & Manley Preamps

Perfect for musicians, engineers, producers, and sound designers, Apollo x8 features four Unison-enabled mic preamps, letting you track through exacting mic preamp emulations from Neve, API, Manley, Helios, SSL, and Universal Audio. A Universal Audio exclusive, Unison technology nails the tone of these sought-after tube and solid state mic pres — including their input impedance, gain stage “sweet spots,” and the component-level circuit behaviors of the original hardware.

The secret to Unison is its hardware-software integration between Apollo’s mic preamps and its onboard HEXA Core DSP Acceleration. Simply place a Unison preamp plug-in on your mic input in Apollo Console software, and it physically reconfigures the Apollo interface's impedance — so you can tap into the classic sounds of the world’s most recorded mic preamps.

Watch the Unison Shoot Out
Watch the Unison Shoot Out

Watch the Unison Shoot Out


What happens when you put Apollo’s Unison preamp models up against their vintage analog counterparts? Producer Jacquire King (Tom Waits, Kings of Leon) finds out at the legendary Blackbird Studios in Nashville.

A Full Suite of Classic<br>Analog Processing Onboard

A Full Suite of Classic
Analog Processing Onboard

Of course, a hallmark feature of Apollo is its Realtime UAD Processing, letting you run the full library of UAD plug-ins with near-zero latency. Apollo x8 includes the Realtime Analog Classics Plus plug-in bundle, so you can record and mix with the world’s only authentic Teletronix LA-2A, 1176LN, and Fairchild compressors, the Unison-enabled UA 610-B Tube Preamp & EQ, and iconic guitar and bass amps from Marshall and Ampeg.

See Included Plug-Ins   |   Watch the live tracking video

Access the World of UAD Powered Plug-Ins

Going beyond the included Realtime Analog Classics Plus plug-ins, Apollo x8 lets you tap into the full UAD Powered Plug-In library of legendary vintage EQs, compressors, reverbs, tape machines, channel strips, and more — at near-zero latency, regardless of your audio software’s buffer size and without taxing your computer’s CPU.

With exclusive emulations from SSL, Neve, Studer, Manley, Helios, API, Ampex, Lexicon, Fender, and more, it’s like having a studio full of iconic analog gear, in a single rack space. And unlike competing interfaces, these award-winning DSP-powered plug-ins are also available in your DAW for mixing.



†Apollo x8 includes the “Realtime Analog Classics Plus” UAD plug-in bundle. Other UAD plug-ins sold separately at www.uaudio.com.
Surround Sound, Talkback, and More

Surround Sound, Talkback, and More

The Apollo x8 features built-in front-panel monitoring functions including a Talkback mic, Alt Speakers, and assignable Dim or Mono control. Plus, with its comprehensive 7.1 surround monitoring support, Apollo x8 is a boon for engineers and producers working on audio and music for video games, television, and the web. In addition, Apollo x8 offers selectable +24 dBu operation for out-of-the-box compatibility with professional mixing consoles and other high-end pro audio equipment.

Build an Expanded Studio System Over Thunderbolt

Build an Expanded Studio System Over Thunderbolt

Apollo x8 offers 18 x 24 simultaneous inputs/outputs (8 x 8 analog I/O) and two built-in Thunderbolt 3 ports. This allows users of any Thunderbolt-equipped Apollo Twin or Apollo rackmount audio interfaces to easily combine up to four Apollos and six total UAD-2 devices — adding fast, high-bandwidth I/O and DSP as your studio grows.

Apollo X Tech Talk
Apollo X Tech Talk

Apollo X Tech Talk

Universal Audio’s Senior Product Manager, Gannon Kashiwa dives deep into the key features, specs, and development behind the latest generation of Apollo audio interfaces.

Apollo: The Choice of New-School Professionals

Apollo is the confirmed choice of hit-making professionals, used to record landmark albums by Kendrick Lamar (DAMN.), Chris Stapleton (From A Room: Volume 1), Arcade Fire (Everything Now), Post Malone (Beerbongs & Bentleys), and many more. The Apollo range of interfaces has earned numerous industry awards from Sound on Sound, Future Music, and Electronic Musician — as well as the prestigious TEC Award for computer audio hardware five years running.

Apollo Artist Sessions
Apollo Artist Sessions

Apollo Artist Sessions

Watch producer/engineer Fab Dupont (Jennifer Lopez, David Crosby) record Latin superstars Monsieur Periné live in Colombia with Apollo X audio interfaces.

View All Apollo Artist Sessions

Owner's Manual

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 and EQs like the Pultec® EQP-1A, but also stunning guitar and bass amp emulations from Softube, and UA’s landmark 610-B Tube Preamp and EQ plug-in.

  • UA 610‐B
  • Marshall Plexi Classic Amplifier
  • Fairchild 670 Legacy
  • Teletronix LA‐2A Legacy
  • UA 1176LN Legacy
  • UA 1176SE Legacy
  • Pultec EQP‐1A Legacy
  • Pultec Pro Legacy
  • Ampeg® SVT-VR Classic Bass Amp
  • Precision Channel Strip
  • Precision Reflection Engine
  • Precision Delay Modulation
  • Precision Delay Modulation L
  • UA Precision Enhancer Hz
  • Raw Distortion
  • RealVerb‐Pro

UA 610-B Tube Preamp and EQ

UA 610-B Tube Preamp and EQ

Impart your tracks with the iconic warmth and character of the classic hardware 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 organic detail and saturation to any signal — whether you’re re-amping or tracking through the 610-B via Universal Audio’s Unison™ technology.

Marshall<sup>®</sup> Plexi Classic Amplifier

Marshall® Plexi Classic Amplifier

The undisputed alpha dog of rock and roll guitar amps, the Marshall “plexi” amplifier is as legendary as the music it helped create. From Jimi Hendrix to Jimmy Page, Duane Allman to Eric Clapton, the Plexi’s punishing melange of snarl, sustain, smoothness, and raunch defined the sound of rock. Developed by Softube, the Marshall Plexi Classic Amp plug-in gives you the sound of this iconic amp with a perfectly placed microphone from engineer Tony Platt who recorded AC/DC’s Back in Black and Highway to Hell.

Fairchild<sup>®</sup> 670 (Legacy)

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 adds a classic “glow” to anything you run through it.

Teletronix<sup>®</sup> LA-2A Classic Leveling Amplifier (Legacy)

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 guitar, bass, drums, and more.

1176SE/LN<sup>®</sup> Classic Limiting Amplifiers (Legacy)

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 1176LN has graced countless recordings, from Led Zeppelin, to the White Stripes and Michael Jackson.

Pultec<sup>®</sup> Pro Equalizers (Legacy)

Pultec® Pro Equalizers (Legacy)

Mix with two of the most sought-after hardware EQs ever made — the MEQ-5 Midrange Equalizer and the EQP-1A Program Equalizer. Both of these tube-based icons deliver smooth and silky EQ curves with an abundance of warm analog character.

Ampeg<sup>®</sup> SVT-VR Classic Bass Amp

Ampeg® SVT-VR Classic Bass Amp

Introduced in 1969, the Ampeg SVT bass amp is still the reigning king of high-powered tube bass tone. Developed by Brainworx, the Ampeg SVT-VR Classic Bass Amp plug-in perfectly captures the raw power and punch that has made this the go-to amp for rock, funk, and soul players. Track in real time using Unison™ preamp technology for the tone, touch, and feel of a real SVT bass amp, or transform bland DI tracks with the thunderous roar of a stone cold classic.

Precision Mix Rack Collection

Precision Mix Rack Collection

Featuring the Precision Channel Strip, Precision Reflection Engine, and Precision Delay Modulation plug-ins, the Precision Mix Rack Collection offers four modern, high-fidelity plug-ins for recording and mixing. Powerful and intuitive, Precision Mix Rack Collection gives you an impressive tool set — perfect for beginners and seasoned professionals alike.

UA Precision Enhancer Hz

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.

Raw Distortion

Raw Distortion

Modeled from a vintage early-’80s Pro Co Rat, Raw Distortion delivers all the gritty dynamic raunch of the legendary stompbox. And with Unison™ technology, you can plug in to Apollo Twin, 8, or 8p’s front-panel Hi-Z instrument jack and experience the same circuit interaction, gain range, and clip points for the true tone, feel, and response of the original hardware.

RealVerb Pro

RealVerb Pro

RealVerb Pro is a flexible, natural sounding reverb based on UA’s own unique set of algorithms. Allowing you to design the room just as you hear it, the RealVerb Pro goes beyond simply big/small or dark/bright, giving your sources distortion-free, smoothing diffusion control and ultra-long reverb tail.

Apollo x8 Features & Specs


  • 18 x 24 Thunderbolt 3 audio interface with class-leading 24-bit/192 KHz conversion (backwards compatible with Thunderbolt 1 & 2 on Mac)

  • Realtime UAD HEXA Core Processing for tracking through UAD plug-ins at near-zero latency, regardless of audio buffer size

  • Record through 4 Unison-enabled mic/line preamps — giving you fully authentic preamp emulations from Neve, API, Manley, SSL, and more†

  • Surround monitor controller up to 7.1 format

  • Includes the "Realtime Analog Classics Plus" UAD plug-in bundle. Other UAD plug-ins sold separately.

  • UAD HEXA Core processing onboard for additional mixing horsepower for Pro Tools, Logic, Cubase, Ableton, and other major DAWs

  • Combine up to 4 Thunderbolt-equipped Apollos and 6 total UAD devices

  • Selectable +24 dBu operation for easy compatibility with professional mixing consoles and tape machines

  • Convenient front panel monitoring functions including Alt Speakers, Talkback mic, and assignable Dim or Mono

  • Free, industry-leading technical support — on the phone and online — from knowledgeable audio engineers

Interface Specifications

Inputs
Line Inputs 8 Balanced ¼" TRS
Microphone Inputs 4 Balanced XLR
Instrument (Hi-Z) Inputs 2 Unbalanced ¼" TS
Digital Inputs (Optical TOSLINK) ADAT: 8 channels @ 44.1 – 96 kHz
ADAT: 4 channels @ 176.4 – 192 kHz
Digital Inputs (RCA) S/PDIF: 2 channels @ 44.1 – 192 kHz
A to D Conversion
Mic Preamps Dynamic Range: 122 dB (A-weighted)
THD+N: -115 dB (0.00019%)
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz, ±0.05 dB
Line Inputs Dynamic Range: 123 dB (A-weighted)
THD+N: -113 dB (0.00022%)
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz, ±0.04 dB
Outputs
Line Outputs 8 Balanced ¼" TRS
Monitor Outputs 2 Balanced ¼" TRS
Headphone Outputs 2 Stereo ¼" TRS
Digital Outputs (Optical TOSLINK) ADAT: 8 channels @ 44.1 – 96 kHz
ADAT: 4 channels @ 176.4 – 192 kHz
Digital Outputs (RCA) S/PDIF: 2 channels @ 44.1 to 192 kHz
D to A Conversion
Line Outputs Dynamic Range: 127 dB (A-weighted)
THD+N: -118 dB (0.00011%)
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz, ±0.07 dB
Monitor Outputs Dynamic Range: 129 dB (A-weighted)
THD+N: -118 dB (0.00012%)
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz, ±0.06 dB
Headphone Outputs Dynamic Range: 125 dB (A-weighted)
THD+N: -102 dB (0.00080%)
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz, ±0.05 dB

Apollo X Series System Requirements

ALL:


  • Thunderbolt 3 cable (not included)
  • Internet connection to download software and authorize UAD plug-ins
  • 6 gigabytes available storage
  • Quad Core i7 or better processor recommended
  • For additional compatibility information, visit help.uaudio.com


MAC:


  • Available Thunderbolt 1, 2, or 3 port
  • Thunderbolt 1 and 2 connections require an Apple Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter (not included)
  • macOS 10.12 Sierra, 10.13 High Sierra, or 10.14 Mojave


PC:


  • Available Thunderbolt 3 port
  • Windows 10 (64-Bit Edition)

Customer Reviews

Apollo x8

Overall Rating

B. Lena

January 27, 2020

Creativity in the equipment

All the UA system, interface and satellites, is great. We all love creativity. There is a lot of creativity in having conceived this system. The x8 sounds great but also the previous generation was great in therms of sound quality. The "Cherry on the cake" is the on/off button on the front panel. The Console app is also cool and don't forget the "Console recall plugin" for sync Console and DAW and the "SampleRate Convert" function on the SPDIF. I wanted an AES I/O actually only on the x16.

C. Lee

January 24, 2020

Amazing Interface

Love it still waiting on my satellite tho...

T. Oludare

January 23, 2020

Great

I love the sound card and the pre amp are so awesome

T. Oludare

January 23, 2020

Great

I love the sound card and the pre amp are so awesome

J. Vest

January 17, 2020

JUST GREAT ! ! !

Sounds amazing - Great software - it even smells good 8-)

K. Nelson

January 14, 2020

Apollo x8

Well..it's exactly like everybody says..EXCELLENT...coming from apollo 8 silver face...it's more open or clear..3D sounding for sure..totally different sound from my silverface..remixing songs is approached totally different because of the upgraded converters..and whatever other improvements made..High end for sure..And a BIG THANKS to Jonathan Casarow at Sweetwater for your knowledge, guidance, and patience..LOL..But I needed to make sure this purchase counted..As far as I'm concerned, I purchased the best interface for what I do...Thank you Sweetwater for doing business in a more than timely manner..

D. Conti

January 12, 2020

Unique Quality

The Sound from the Apollo is incredible...
DSP Plugins work perfect...

T. Penn

January 9, 2020

Sonic Perfection

This is my 3rd UA interface and I continue to be amazed at how each generation sounds better than the previous generation. Same easy to use format, great plug-ins and fantastic support if you ever need it. The perfect tools for any studio!

V. Territo

January 9, 2020

When you want the best.......

The Apollo x8 and its family is without a doubt the best gear upgrade I've made in many years. Once you get past the upgraded converters, its dual clocks, the unison pre's and about a million other industry leading specs the thing that keeps jumping out at you is just how good it sounds. It just sounds better then everything else I've tried, period. Theres a reason you will find this gear in the biggest and smallest studios around the world.........It Works!!!!!!

J. Gellis

January 8, 2020

Not my first Apollo - my family just got bigger

I added the x8 to my system which includes an 8P and a satellite. More Pre's more outputs, more processing and.... on the way is another satellite. If you don't already know, these units combine into one ecosystem as if they are all one unit. Love, love, love this interface!

F. Colmán von Lücken

January 8, 2020

Muy satisfecho con el producto, espero mejoras en la interfaz.

Enamorado de:
1. La calidad de los componentes electrónicos.
2. La utilidad de los circuitos (Signal flow, especialmente en los DSP).
3. La capacidad de conversión del sistema AD/DA, fantástico.
4. Unison es genial.
5. El aspecto exterior es bellísimo y fácil de interpretar.

Para mejorar:
1. Podrían integrar un sistema de Re-Amp.
2. Agregar herramientas virtuales como parte del kit, como un afinador, un espectrómetro, entre otros que puedan ayudar en la labor inicial con el producto.
3. Mejorar la interfaz virtual con respecto al OSX en la capacidad de expandir la consola a la pantalla completa (verde en el "ícono semáforo").
4. El diseño del transformador exterior me ha generado problemas con la instalación del mismo en mi rack, al menos agreguen algún accesorio para su instalación.

T. Ameloot

January 7, 2020

Beyond my wildest expectations

I really love this interface. Top specs, amazing sound quality, and above all: the Unison preamps are nothing short of amazing. Good stuff!

S. Alcala

January 5, 2020

Beyond amazed

Best interface I’ve ever owned. I am definitely sticking with universal audio for life.

UAD User

January 4, 2020

Superb audio quality

Major upgrade from my previous audio interface.thank you uad

m. leblanc

January 3, 2020

Carte parfaite

Uad est synonyme de qualité. Carte de son Apollo 8x. Parfait

S. Ra

December 31, 2019

Nice appearance and perfect specs

It's an audio interface with the best specs and a nice appearance.
It has some scratches on its appearance and it's a pity that Windows WDM doesn't support multichannel surround, but it's still very nice and efficient audio interface.

C. Chrysogelos

December 27, 2019

Quality

I've paired my Apollo Twin (Silver) with an Apollo x8 and i'm more than happy i did that. At first i thought it was a placebo of the new gear but the truth is that the sound is has more depth and it's tighter on the low end. The converters and mic pre's are amazing and super clear. Amazing work UA!

D. Chapman

December 25, 2019

Not quite as I'd hoped for!

Console 2.0 is so far behind the likes of RME that it makes the routing side quite difficult for live use! Only 4 stereo busses in Console is less than most analogue desks from the 70s, and the converter clarity (to my ears, at least) wasn't an improvement on my current RME UFX. Indeed, I've gone back to RME for this purpose.

C. ortiz

December 25, 2019

best upgrade

huge upgrade from my previous interface day and night

a. wedeen

December 24, 2019

Awesome

Greatunit. Love it