Slate Digital VRS8 Thunderbolt Audio Interface
10 x 8 Thunderbolt Audio Interface, with 8 Ultra Linear VMS Mic Preamps, 1-year license to Slate Digital “Everything Bundle”, Perpetual License to VPC “Virtual Preamp Collection”
Eight Ultra Linear Preamps
The start of any signal chain is extremely important, which is why the VRS8 features EIGHT high bandwidth Ultra Linear microphone preamps. These are the same ‘blank canvas’ design as the VMS-One preamp from Slate’s award-winning Virtual Microphone System, enabling you to use Slate’s modeling software to recreate the authentic sound of famous microphones and preamps. Each preamp has its own high-quality metal knob, so you can easily set levels like a regular analog preamp – instead of using single logic controller knobs and menus, as some of the competitors have chosen to do.
Industry Best Converters
The next step in the signal chain is the converter itself. Instead of using budget components, the VRS8 offers mastering-quality conversion by incorporating the newest AKM AK5578 converter chips – offering a whopping industry-best 124db of dynamic range on all 8 inputs!
High Quality Components
The sound of an audio interface relies on much more than the converter chip itself – all of the components in the audio circuit have a direct result on the audio quality. Keeping to our “no compromise” design aesthetic, the VRS8 utilizes high-quality WIMA capacitors for the entire audio path.
Low Latency Native
Part of the goal behind creating the Virtual Recording Studio was to provide a near-realtime experience when using our analog modeled plugins while tracking. In order to achieve that goal, we created a new technology called LLN, which stands for “Low Latency Native”. LLN utilizes a custom hard-wired converter chipset, which reduces managed components in the audio path and allows an incredible .7 milliseconds of latency at 96K (with a 32 sample buffer). This latency spec allows you to monitor through mic and preamp emulations while tracking, giving you the ability to hear your audio in context while still allowing you to change your mind later.
XTC Audio Clock
The audio clock is the heart of any recording interface, which is why it was important that the VRS8 had a killer clocking system onboard. Slate uses satellite-grade XTC clocking technology, utilizing four temperature-compensated crystal oscillators for ultra-stable audio performance, keeping your audio jitter and distortion free.
Discrete Headphone Amplifiers
Most engineers listen to music on headphones when working in the studio, but headphone amplifiers are the first place that manufacturers usually look to cut costs when building an interface. Instead of using typical designs that cost mere pennies, Slate uses discrete amplifiers to ensure that your headphones sound robust and clear for all of your monitoring tasks. Not only that, Slate also added in two separate monitor mixes and the ability to use the VRS8 as a speaker switcher.
Cross Platform Low Latency Performance
The world of audio interfaces is rarely cross-platform when it comes to performance, meaning that Mac devices (using Thunderbolt) usually far outperform PC interfaces (using USB). While USB can be effective for two-channel designs, it requires more CPU overhead to manage, resulting in higher CPU usage and latency versus Thunderbolt – and the problem just gets worse as you add more channels. Unlike any other interface on the market, the VRS8 offers both Thunderbolt and PCIe connectivity for maximum cross-platform compatibility. The PCIe performance is the same as Thunderbolt, so you can decide for yourself which connection to use. You can also link up to 6 VRS8’s via Thunderbolt to achieve 48 inputs and outputs.
Native MIDI IO
Slate’s “no compromise” design goal extended well into areas that other manufacturers simply ignore, which is evidenced by the VRS8’s native MIDI IO. Unlike USB MIDI interfaces (where MIDI information has to fight with your mouse, keyboard, and other USB traffic) MIDI IO on the VRS8 never touches the USB bus. You can count on hyper-accurate MIDI timing, and stuck sustain pedals when tracking keyboards and synths should become a thing of the past.