Last week, we noted that Apogee was apparently preparing to launch a new desktop audio interface for Mac known as "Quartet", expanding upon its popular Duet 2 portable device for professional audio recording. The report included an image of the Quartet that had been prematurely posted by Apogee, but further details on the device remained unknown.

apogee quartet imac
Apogee has now officially introduced the Quartet, which arrives carrying four inputs and eight outputs for a significant boost in channel capacity. The Quartet can also be paired with Apogee's Duet 2 or Ensemble product to expand the number of channels even further.


Apogee's Quartet continues to use USB 2.0 connectivity, but the company lays out its case that USB 2.0 is "more than adequate" for the Quartet's requirements in explaining why the device does not use USB 3.0 or Thunderbolt. A total of nine touchpads, three of which are configurable, offer fast access to all recording and monitoring functions of the Quartet, while the trademark aluminum controller knob carried over from the Duet offers precise level control.

apogee quartet rear
The Apogee Quartet carries a list price of $1295.

Top Rated Comments

wutang61 Avatar
116 months ago
But can it run crysis?
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
striker33 Avatar
116 months ago
At such a great price I think I'll pick up a couple for my Grandma.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MagnusVonMagnum Avatar
116 months ago
And nowhere near the quality of ANYTHING Apogee makes.

Great. Another person I can sell swamp land to. How much would you like to buy? :)

Seriously, when it comes to "high end" audio, the sky is the limit for the amount of BS snake-oil "properties" companies can sell to people that don't know any better. Apogee is quality equipment, but it's way overpriced for what you get IMO in the areas that matter these days. Sadly, no quality of op-amp is going to save you from either USB 2.0 latency issues (unforgivable here given the price) or Apple earbuds being the playback medium of consumer choice these days OR the fact that a typical pop album has about 10dB of dynamic range on average (since the record labels believe louder = better even if it's clipping). So what is the point in buying the "best" recording gear if the end product could have been reproduced on the worst dreck out there?

Even so, typical "low end" (price-wise) amplifiers and receivers on the consumer end have improved drastically over the past decade as have speakers from companies like PSB that can make +/- 1dB frequency response a reality in speakers that cost under $1k a pair (unheard of 20+ years ago anywhere near that price). But it still takes at least a modicum of thought to find these good speakers since places like Best Buy are not the place to shop for such things and at this stage, the idea that the typical consumer is EVER going to have the kind of system on the playback chain that warrants ever increasing diminishing returns high-end equipment on the recording chain is about exactly ZERO.

There are, of course, classical labels that cater to high-end audio for recording (seeing they don't need to pay rock stars), but if classical and jazz isn't your thing you're sadly limited to a handful of pop or rock recordings that are worthy of more expensive gear (some Tori Amos and Pink Floyd recordings come to mind).

In any case, I'm afraid far more damage is done via editing and mastering on most albums than any op-amp on a cheaper input device would ever provide to a typical recording. Apogee is about the brand name reputation in "high-end" circles (snake-oil or not) more than the products, IMO. The fact they made a consumer EQ "palette" device for high-end speakers ought to tell you something about the nature of typical recordings out there. An accurate speaker should NEVER need any kind of EQ what-so-ever, but sadly the recording end is where most music gets screwed up (whether by incompetence or being ordered to by music execs that don't give a flying crap about sound quality, only perception based studies on loudness = higher sales data).
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
fiveainone Avatar
116 months ago
Apogee is still around? :confused::D
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MagnusVonMagnum Avatar
116 months ago
Let me guess. You're one of those that think if the buy a UAD plugin the got the real thing and sounds exactly the same?

Why would I buy plugins that attempt to mar the sound with discolorations when I already have tons of built-in options to alter the sound with EQ, phase and other effects? :confused:


Audio gear shouldn't sound at all? Are you serious?

It depends on what you're looking for and where it is in the chain. It should NEVER change the sound in the playback chain in a system that claims any kind of accuracy to the signal as you are then modifying what is in the recording by altering it. On the recording side, it should be accurate as possible in the standard studio chain and only modified by the artist before being input into the system if they're looking for a certain sound.

In other words, if your goal is to record a live orchestra and have it sound as real as possible, the LAST thing you'd want is a stack of tube pre-amps between the microphones and the recording gear. If you have a rock band that wants that "tube amp sound" on their guitars, it's an artistic choice, not a question of fidelity. In short, I would not want this Apogee device imparting its own colorations to the signal. That is not its job.



Should I tell my clients to dump all their tube gear etc. because it doesn't sound transparent and therefor not real pro audio gear. :D

There's a difference between using something because you want to create a certain sound (e.g. tube amps create even-order distortion which sounds pleasant to the ear) and having equipment that colors the sound regardless of whether you want it or not (i.e. amplifiers in the recording chain that have nothing to do with artistic input or on the playback side where instead of recreating what the artist intended you to hear distort it by adding their own color). One example is the turn-table on the playback side. The reason some cartridges sound "warmer" than others is that they're changing the sound. Hey, if that's what you want, fine, but don't pretend it's accurate playback. It's no different fundamentally than adding a graphic equalizer on the playback side. If you want to crank up the bass or mid-range for a given album, go ahead but it's not what's on the album. Choosing speakers for a "warm" sound is the same difference.

The bottom line is that if you want to hear what's on the recording, be it the playback chain or the monitor speakers in the studio, you need ACCURATE equipment. Otherwise, you're making adjustments to adjustments and the end result on true high fidelity (as in accurate playback) equipment will be an unknown.

So no, I don't agree with studios that use cheap playback speakers because it's an "industry standard" or it gives a certain sound. That's a crock to any real engineer that wants accuracy, not marred sound. "Pro" unfortunately doesn't mean accurate and that's why there's a LOT of bad sounding albums out there (and I don't mean the artists' performance).

You might as well use plugins to alter the sound if that's what you're after since all you're really doing is changing the frequency response, harmonics, phase, etc. anyway. By all means, make it sound like you want it to for a given project, but don't tell me it's a good idea to use colored gear in the studio in general since you'll never have an accurate base point to start out with.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MagnusVonMagnum Avatar
116 months ago
There are so many audio interfaces which cost way more then this quartet.
Apogee is expensive but you get what you pay for. Apple isn't cheap either but clearly people see it as the best choice.

You buy pro audio gear based on how it sounds. ******* money. :cool:

Audio gear shouldn't "sound" at all. It's supposed to be transparent. After a certain point, it is and people are fooling themselves with golden ear crap.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

REC ASA CODE2016 20160601 205816 2745

Elon Musk Reportedly Demanded to Become Apple CEO as Part of Potential Tesla Acquisition [Update: Musk Denies]

Friday July 30, 2021 9:04 am PDT by
Tesla CEO Elon Musk reportedly once demanded that he be made Apple CEO in a brief discussion of a potential acquisition with Apple's current CEO, Tim Cook. The claim comes in a new book titled "Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk and the Bet of the Century," as reviewed by The Los Angeles Times. According to the book, during a 2016 phone call between Musk and Cook that touched on the possibility of ...
General Apps Messages

Android iMessage Competitor Puts Pressure on Apple

Friday July 30, 2021 3:15 am PDT by
Google and the three major U.S. carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, will all support a new communications protocol on Android smartphones starting in 2022, a move that puts pressure on Apple to adopt a new cross-platform messaging standard and may present a challenge to iMessage. Verizon recently announced that it is planning to adopt Messages by Google as its default messaging...
iPhone 13 Always On Feature

iPhone 13 to Bring Over a Major Feature From the Apple Watch

Wednesday July 28, 2021 2:21 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming iPhone 13 lineup will feature an always-on display akin to the Apple Watch Series 5 and Series 6, according to recent reports. In his weekly Power On newsletter, Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman, who often reveals accurate insights into Apple's plans, said that the iPhone 13 may feature an Apple Watch-inspired always-on mode. The Apple Watch Series 5 and Apple Watch...
duracell battery bitter coating

Apple Says Don't Buy AirTag Replacement Batteries With Bitter Coating

Wednesday July 28, 2021 11:08 am PDT by
Since AirTags were just released earlier this year and are expected to have a year-long battery life, it may be some time yet before AirTag users need a replacement battery, but when the time comes for a refresh, Apple is warning customers not to buy batteries with a bitter coating. AirTags use coin-shaped CR2032 batteries, which happen to be a size that's easy to swallow. Some battery...
a15 chip

iPhone 13 and Redesigned MacBook Pro Chip Production Hit With Gas Contamination

Friday July 30, 2021 5:44 am PDT by
The most important TSMC factory that manufactures Apple's chips destined for next-generation iPhone and Mac models has been hit by a gas contamination, according to Nikkei Asia. The factory, known as "Fab 18," is TSMC's most advanced chipmaking facility. TSMC is Apple's sole chip supplier, making all of the processors used in every Apple device with a custom silicon chip. Industry...
apple rtp land

Apple Preparing to Occupy 200,000 Square Feet of Temporary Space Ahead of New $1 Billion North Carolina Campus

Thursday July 29, 2021 9:14 am PDT by
Back in April, Apple announced a $430 billion investment over the next five years to create more than 20,000 new jobs as the company continues to expand. One significant piece of that plan is a new engineering and research center in North Carolina where Apple will be investing over $1 billion and hiring at least 3,000 employees. Assemblage of seven properties in Research Triangle Park owned by ...
Apple Leak Feature

Apple Demands Leaker Reveals Sources Under Threat of Being Reported to Police

Wednesday July 28, 2021 6:53 am PDT by
Apple has sent a cease and desist letter to a leaker based in China as part of its continuing attempts to curtail leaks of unreleased products, according to Vice. A Chinese citizen who shared images of stolen Apple prototypes on social media was sent a warning letter from Fangda Partners, Apple's law firm in China, on June 18, 2021. An extract from the letter read:You have disclosed without ...
macos monterey tidbits feature copy

Apple Releases New macOS 12 Monterey Public Beta

Wednesday July 28, 2021 10:19 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the third public beta of the macOS 12 Monterey beta to public beta testers, allowing non-developers to test the new macOS Monterey software ahead of its public release. The third beta comes two weeks after Apple released the second macOS Monterey public beta. Public beta testers can download the macOS 12 Monterey update from the Software Update section of the System...
iOS 15 General Feature Purple

Apple Releases New Public Betas of iOS 15, iPadOS 15, watchOS 8, and tvOS 15

Wednesday July 28, 2021 10:16 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the third betas of iOS and iPadOS 15 to public beta testers, allowing non-developers to download and test the new updates ahead of their fall release. The third public betas come two weeks after Apple released the second public betas. Public beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program can download the iOS and iPadOS 15 updates over the air after...
nothing ear 1 buds 1

Nothing 'Ear (1)' True Wireless Earbuds Launch to Take on AirPods Pro With ANC and Unusual Design for $99

Tuesday July 27, 2021 7:57 am PDT by
Nothing, a new brand from OnePlus founder Carl Pei, has today officially launched the "Ear (1)" true wireless earbuds after months of anticipation around the company's AirPods Pro rival. The Ear (1) features an in-ear design, Active Noise Cancelation, Bluetooth 5.2, IPX4 water resistance, and a charging case with Qi-compatible wireless charging and a USB-C port. Fast pairing is supported on...