When I upgraded my studio from my old Fostex 24-track system to my Digidesign Pro Tools setup I lost some critical functionality. My Digidesign Digi-002 Rack system only had 8 total inputs which was a major downgrade from my 24-track. To be able to do live studio recordings with the whole band I needed a minimum of 12 channels for our 4-piece band.
Luckily my Digidesign Digi-002 Rack has a built-in ADAT interface. So my search began for an A/D Converter with Mic preamps built in.
I looked at units by Alesis and Presonus and they were nice units but really pricey. Finally, I found the:
Behringer ADA8000 Ultragain Pro-8 A/D/A Converter
It’s amazingly low priced for what it does. The Behringer ADA800 is an 8-channel A/D/A converter with inputs for either standard 1\4″ instrument cables or low-impedance microphone cables. The rack has switchable phantom-power for your high end studio and condenser microphones. Each input has an input gain adjustment knob that has a really good range. I am able to hook the Behringer ADA8000 up to my Digidesign Digi-002 rack with it’s built-in ADAT interface. The ADAT interface has selectable signal conversion rates of 44.1kHz or 48kHz. A huge feature is that it will run in full 24-bit resolution so you get pristine sounds associated with 24-bit resolution.
My primary usage has been to add an additional 8 inputs to my Digidesign Pro Tools setup and it functions perfectly with it. I now have the ability to record 16 inputs simultaneously and it all works flawlessly. The only thing you have to watch out for is making sure the conversion rates and ADAT clock sync is setup properly in Pro Tools. If you don’t have everything set right you will get digital noise artifacts. Once everything is set the ADA8000 is completely transparent. It’s amazing how quiet the Mic preamps are. There is no hiss at all and they don’t color the signal at all either. That’s fantastic when you’re mixing down and you have these perfect input signals to work with.
My only word of caution, as always, is that Behringer makes budget equipment so you need to make sure you register the product with Behringer as soon as you have it. Behringer is fine to work with on exchanges and service as long as you have registered your products. I had my first one of these units fail but Behringer replaced if for free and I had the replacement within a week. I’ve noticed throughout my career that electronics of this variety (no moving parts) will either fail within the first month or they will run forever. So you should be good to go as long as you register for your warranty.
So I’m giving the Behringer ADA8000 my highest recommendation simply because it does exactly what it says it will, it does it perfectly and it won’t break your budget!
I’m giving you 3 buying sources for the Behringer ADA8000 and I’m highly suggesting that you buy new and not used simply for warranty reasons:
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