Pro Sound News reviewer and noted TV music composer Rich Tozzoli recently held his annual private St. John Recording Retreat with friends and colleagues, and used the opportunity to review gear in paradise—like this:

The Universal Audio Apollo Twin MKII was the central “brain” of the mobile operation at our St. John Recording Retreat, and it did a great job—as I expected it to.

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Since the gang on this trip had previously done a direct A/B comparison between the updated UAD converters in the mkII ‘blackface’ and the previous generations mkI silver interfaces, we knew it would sound better. What I like about this small box is that there’s nothing fancy—it just sits there and gets the job done. We used it as a two-channel XLR mic preamp, a single-channel DI input for instruments, a headphone box (with those nasty plastic headphone splitter cables that barely work), a DSP processing center for the UAD plug-ins and a speaker volume controller.

The companion UAD Console software was important, too. I used it for software guitar amps and effects, as well as using the Unison slots to drive the connected microphones quite hard. The main software guitar amp on this recording trip was the Fuchs Overdrive Supreme 50 (mostly clean), along with some classic effects in line, such as the EP-34 Tape Echo, Roland RE-201 Space Echo, Dimension D chorus, MXR Flanger/Doubler and, of course, the EMT 140 plate and AKG BX 20 spring.

I like also that you can take the Twin MKII out of the box, plug it in, connect a single Thunderbolt cable to the laptop, and you’re up and running. Like most everything else on this trip, it’s quick and easy to set up, it’s compact, and it’s really powerful. And boy, does it sound good.

Universal Audio