MOTU 896mk3 Hybrid
MOTU 896mk3 Hybrid

896mk3 Hybrid, USB audio interface from MOTU in the 896 series.

Prices starting at $995 average price: $1,421
Greg L Pro Tools 03/26/2012

MOTU 896mk3 Hybrid : Greg L Pro Tools's user review


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Audience: Beginners
I was looking for a REAL soundcard techno sound, that is to say, with buttons and flashing lights in all directions! And full connectivity!

Seriously, I recerchais card 8 combo inputs XLR / mic jacks / Line / Instrument, which can adjust the gain for each channel with-20dB pad and phantom power per channel, and an indicator of peak dBFS and Therefore clips per channel in front ... and for my budget at less than 1000 €:
MOTU has done!

Hybrid name is that you can work via USB or FireWire. Besides, it even has two FW 800 ports to be able to cascade the MOTU (3 maximum per FireWire port).

Yes, an indication via LEDs per channel many of which enters or leaves in terms of dBFS level, it is not on all maps found that, even in 2012!

In back, certainly not MIDI, but it's his only flaw for a user musician, not a techno sound. The MIDI that is added when you want (not until noon ...).
For rezte, the connection is complete:
8 XLR Line Output,
A main output XLR & T,
A main output in stereo jack 6.35 (bring a Y),
1 input + 1 output AES / EBU XLR ST,
1 input + 1 output S / PDIF RCA,
1 input + 1 output S / PDIF TOSLINK optical,
2 inputs + 2 outputs ADAT optical (2x 8 channels),
1 input + 1 output Word Clock,
1 headphone ST.


All this of 44.1 kilohertz to 192 kHz! And 16 to 24 bits.

BUT THE TOP is this: Routing at will!

We can separate out 8 stereo mix:
- ST mix 4 on 8 separate XLR Line Out.,
- 2x and the main out mix (2 XLR line out, 1 line out jack 6.35 ST)
- A mix ST separate from the headphone output jack Line Out ST 6.35
- And two other mix ST (AES / EBU, S / PDIF, ADAT).

Of internal DSP effects to calculate EQ, Comp / Lim, and Reverb.

That is what give the facade FOH, monitors return to, and uptake, more radio, TV ... our nice stereo mix.

A virtual console controls the MOTU 896 mk3 Hybrid, via software.
You can save / recall of presets and configurations.

And all this is possible since the BE virtual console software, IE since the buttons on the front of the MOTU, MOTU making autonomous stand alone: ​​no need for computer on stage!


Very stable drivers.
CueMix console starts in 3 seconds or less.
Sometimes I had to restart the virtual console software "CueMix", but this happens VERY rarely, finally approaching zero.

I use the MOTU 896 mk3 Hybrid Pro Tools 10, and it's ultra stable, no problem.
The buffer can be set with Pro Tools in increments of 64 samples. At 128 or 256 samples, playable yet musically it's not too much latency.

USB recording 32 tracks simultaneous playback mode, Pro Tools and MOTU 896 mk3 10 Hybrid not budge. The test was done with a Sony Vaio PCV series, based on Intel Core i5.

Latency is good, as in 128 in 256 samples: it starts as dry the finger and the eye, and it's still playable for live musicians.


First install the drivers for the MOTU, then restart.
Then install Pro Tools 10, and restart.
And now: it runs like a brand new truck engine.

The setting characteristics of the MOTU can be done in Pro Tools as audio out soft. It is simple and straightforward, almost no need doc, even for beginners.

No incompatibilities encountered.
The French manual is only for the MOTU 896 mk3, not Hybrid version, but that does not change much.


I use the MOTU 896 mk3 for 3 months.

I used to use
- A 888/24 for Pro Tools TDM
- A Mbox2 Pro
- An MBox first version: it's saying!

The connector is pro, robust, nothing cheap.

I like the simple ergonomics of the Motu, the ability to set all parameters via the computer or from the front, its connectivity ultra rich, its LEDs for each channel incoming and outgoing audio quality of course, its robustness, reliability from A to Z.
The screen of the front could have been bigger than these two lines of characters, but you would do it without problem.
Above all, the virtual console CueMix could have been greater, and resizable: it is the only defect of this MOTU.

Finally, the MOTU card is used in many pro studios in Paris, a guarantee of reliability and quality, in my opinion.

RESULTS: In a word, go for it, eyes closed, and objectivity: the price / quality ratio is unbeatable.