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MOTU 896mk3 Firewire Audio Interface

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Turn your computer into a professional digital audio workstation with integrated DSP-driven mixing, EQ, compression, and reverb with the MOTU 896mk3 FireWire Interface.It provides 8 channels of pristi... Click To Read More About This Product

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Turn your computer into a professional digital audio workstation with integrated DSP-driven mixing, EQ, compression, and reverb with the MOTU 896mk3 FireWire Interface.

It provides 8 channels of pristine 24-bit, 192kHz analog recording and playback, combined with 16 channels of optical digital I/O, stereo AES/EBU, S/PDIF, and separate analog main outs. Expand your system by connecting the 8pre mic input expander or other MOTU audio interfaces.

The 896mk3 is equally well-suited for studio and stage, with or without a computer. As an audio interface or standalone mixer, the 896mk3 provides 28 separate inputs and 32 separate outputs, including dedicated main outs on XLRs and two front panel headphone outs.

Connect all of your studio gear, including microphones, guitars, synths, keyboards, drum machines, and even effects processors. Record, monitor, route, and process all of these live inputs using the professional onboard CueMix FX digital mixer—with no latency and no processor strain on your computer. Apply hardware DSP-driven effects processing to inputs, outputs, and buses independent of your host computer. Add "Classic Reverb" with lengths up to 60 seconds. Further sculpt your sound with 7-band parametric EQ featuring filter types carefully modeled after British analog console EQs. Choose between two forms of compression: a conventional compressor and the Leveler, an accurate model of the legendary LA-2A optical compressor that provides vintage musical automatic gain control.

When recording from the mic/guitar inputs, the 896mk3 FireWire interface has signal overload protection that gives you an extra 12dB of headroom above zero with no clipping or harsh artifacts.

After programming the onboard mixing in the studio, unplug the MOTU 896mk3 from the computer and take it on the road for operation as a standalone mixer with effects. All mixing and effects parameters are adjustable using the front panel backlit LCD.

The 896mk3 provides cross-platform compatibility with Mac and Windows and all of your favorite audio software and host-based effects via WDM/ASIO/Core Audio drivers. Or you can use the included AudioDesk workstation software for Mac, with 24-bit recording and editing and 32-bit mixing, processing, and mastering.


  • CueMix FX - flexible 28 input/16 bus mixer with onboard DSP effects, including reverb with sends/returns, plus EQ and compression on every input and output
  • 28 inputs/32 outputs (at 44.1/48kHz)—all mic inputs, AES/EBU I/O, S/PDIF I/O, headphone out, and main outs are handled as separate channels
  • Front-panel control - access any setting in your entire 896mk3 mix directly from the front panel
  • Standalone operation - program your mixes at the studio and then bring the 896mk3 to your gig—no computer needed
  • Backlit LCD and front-panel controls
  • Multiple CueMix FX mixes
  • Eight rear-panel combo jacks provide 1/4" or XLR mic input with phantom power, pad, and plenty of gain
  • Clip protection - input limiter prevents digital clipping and distortion from overloaded signal levels up to +12dB over zero
  • Eight 24-bit 192kHz analog inputs and outputs on XLR jacks
  • Flexible optical I/O - 16 channels of ADAT lightpipe, 8 channels of SMUX (96kHz), or two pairs of stereo TOSLink; mix and match formats between the two banks
  • Expandable - add additional interfaces for more I/O as necessary
  • Separate XLR main outs and front-panel headphone jacks, each with independent volume control
  • Stereo 24-bit 96kHz AES/EBU in/out
  • Stereo 24-bit 96kHz S/PDIF in/out
  • Word clock in and out
  • Includes drivers for Mac and PC, including ASIO, WDM, Wave, GSIF, Core Audio, and Core MIDI. Supports all popular Macintosh and Windows audio software
  • 100% compatible with all host-based effects processing in today's popular audio programs
  • Includes AudioDesk full-featured sample-accurate workstation software for Macintosh with recording, editing, mixing, real-time 32-bit effects processing, and sample-accurate sync
  • Plug-and-play operation with Mac or PC via FireWire
  • Front-panel volume control for monitoring—Stereo, Quad, 6.1, 7.1 and user-defined surround monitoring setups available
  • Two front-panel headphone jacks with independent volume controls
  • Comprehensive front-panel metering for all analog and digital audio I/O
  • Dedicated front-panel clock status LEDs
  • International 100-240V, 50-60 Hz autoswitching power supply
Pro Coverage
Warranty terms vary. Check with manufacturer for specific product warranty.

  • Customer Reviews

Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews

(based on 3 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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Reviewed by 3 customers

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(23 of 24 customers found this review helpful)


Best bang for your buck!!!

By Nathan

from Minneapolis MN

This just works well on so many levels. You have 8 killer mic preamps. You also have great Compression and limiter, Plus reverb that you can record with or just use it for monitoring, Plus a great EQ. All in only 2 rack spaces!!! Do the math. Just for the great compression and limiter alone is worth the extra 300 bucks from the other firewire interfaces. If you want to be one step above the rest in your studio then MOTU all the way.

(15 of 15 customers found this review helpful)


Great Interface!

By Taylor

from Glendale, AZ

I had previous experience on the 896HD, so I am pretty familiar with how this unit works. I love how the 896mk3 has 8 separate mic pre's with individual phantom power. That gives me flexible options for recording. The 8 analog outputs are certainly nice, as I use them to connect my monitors for surround mixing. The universal installer disc worked seamlessly with my Intel iMac and I have not had any issues with AudioDesk or CueMix or with Logic (what I use primarily). All in all it's a great device, certainly for what you are spending. I definitely recommend the 896mk3.

(8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)


MOTU 896mk3 FireWire

By tcot

from Abilene, TX

I have several Mac's older and newer at different locations all running Logic Pro 8 and 9. I tried the Presonus Tube but it wouldn't work with my older PowerMac IBM G5 with Leopard despite mutiple calls to and fixes from support. The Motu software is impeccable and works as advertised across the board.

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