lse 11/26/2013

Apogee Jam : lse's user review

«  Expensive, limited but amazing »
4

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Value For Money : Poor
I use my iMac with an M-Audio Fast Track II which is a great little audio interface.
It happens that I have from time to time when I'm at my other half use an iPad and so I equipped with a Apogee Jam
I started by talking about my Fast Track because Jam is the same price, or if the Fast Track has two entrances, one of which has phantom power, the Jam has a single entrance.
Fast Track uses a standard USB cable to power on the Mac, the Jam uses proprietary cables, it comes with a cable to connect to USB on a Mac or a 30-pin flat plug for iPad (I just read a version with ligthening cord would also be available).
If you lose the USB cord from the FastTrack you'll spin a few kopecks for a Chinese standard cord, if you lose the cords Jam it will cost for a eye is the owner and therefore it must pass through Apogee.

Since they are the same price, the Jam is expensive given to its rather limited benefits.

Jam plugs by taking 30-pin iPad, concretely this means that the digital signal is sent, the Jam, which digitizes the analog out of the guitar signal (unlike systems using the audio input of the iPad entrusting this conversion to iPad). As precisely Apogee is pretty good side A / D converters, the sound is nickel, no perceptible breath.

So much for the great marketing bagpipes. In real life the Jam converted only in one direction, there is no audio output.
The basic principle is that a guitar provided an analog signal, a speaker is provided for receiving an analog signal same for an amp.
When using a computing device (in a Mac or iPad case) the analog signal to be digitized for computer use and then converted into an analog signal to continue towards speakers or an amplifier.

With fastTrack: the signal (analog) guitar is converted to digital by the interface, and then stranded on my Mac by various soft.
To remove the resulting noise (digital) to external HP or an analog amp, I can ask the FastTrack convert the signal (digital) out of the Mac into an analog signal. I then connected the HP (or amplifier) ​​to the RCA FastTrack.
If I do not want to convert the digital signal into analog by the FastTrack and I prefer to let the Mac do the job, I just connect my speakers to the audio output of the Mac.

With the Jam signal (analog) guitar is converted to digital by the Jam and then treated in the iPad. If I want to highlight what signal to send it to HP or an external amp, I can not go through the Jam, which is one-way, I have no other choice but to use the audio output from the iPad in this case this is not the iPad Jam that will provide digital / analog conversion.

Basically it is not a problem for personal use at home (which is still the main destination of the Jam) but if fuller use whether to output the sound from the iPad, I'm not that everything goes like clockwork. More specifically, to save as a file is recovered (digital) there is no problem, but live they are forced to use the audio output of the iPad (or specify the Ipad is criticized for its conversions averages, which are the difference between Jam and eg Irig)

For the rest it is a perfect little gadget, the sound is good it's total plug and play, with both the Mac with an iPad (iPad 2 in my case). Garageband recognizes the right (but also other apps on the iPad I use GarageBand).
it is small cables (so owners) are good, all held without any problems in a pocket of the cover of the guitar. Simple hand operation it is hard, there is a single command, a gain knob and an LED has three colors indicating connected (blue) in (green) too high (red).

In short, the Jam is a great thing, but too expensive, but great. Basically it's just a natural extension musician iPad.
I put it 8/10 because of the price. At almost 100 euros with proprietary cables overpriced frieze on the crime, if we disregard the price, it is a 10/10 it deserves.