MOTU Track16

USB and Firewire hybrid audio interface

  • 24 bits 192 kHz
  • 8 analog inputs and outputs
  • Inputs for microphones (including phantom power)
  • Guitars and line signals
  • 1x ADAT / S / PDIF input and output
  • Sym. and unsym. Input / Output
  • 2 headphone outputs (3.5mm and 6.3mm)
  • Standalone function - operating as a 16 channel digital mixer without computer
  • MIDI input and output
  • DSP mixer with EQ and compressor for each input / output channel
  • 4 x 14 LED display
  • 10 backlit buttons
  • Extensive software for real-time analysis and more
  • SMPTE timecode
  • Computer connection: 1x Firewire 400 (Type B - Bus powered) and 1x USB 2.0 (without bus power)
  • Including power supply
  • Windows and Mac drivers with 32 and 64 bit (requires Windows as of Vist SP2 Mac 10.5.8 - PPC G5 and Intel)

Further information

Recording / Playback Channels 16x14
Number of Mic Inputs 2
Number of Instrument Inputs 2
Headphone Outs 1
Phantom power Yes
Number of S/PDIF Connectors 0
Number of ADAT Connectors 1
Numer of AES/EBU Connectors 0
Number of MADI Connectors 0
Ethernet 0
Other Connectors No
MIDI interface Yes
Word Clock No
Max. sample rate (kHz) 192
Max. resolution in bit 24 bit
USB Bus-Powered No
Incl. power supply Yes
USB Version 2.0
Width in mm 127 mm
Depth in mm 213 mm
Height in mm 29 mm

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21 customer ratings:
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
4.1 / 5.0
  • handling
  • features
  • sound
  • quality
12 written ratings Read all reviews
Total
quality
features
handling
sound

Not worth 500+?

08.12.2014
The Track 16 is an OK interface, but MOTU could have done a lot better, or could sell it a lot cheaper, at least half its actual price.

To start with an for me one of the most important things, is that the Track16 struggles with clocking. If you don't have your clock sorted, then the rest doesn't really matters. This happens either with FW or USB connection.

Then the connections. That breakout cable seems to have been built by an amateur. Extremely poor quality. It only turns one way (in my case to the left, so it you would want it to turn to the right you would have to twist it against its will probably reducing its life expectancy. It's also huge, so it makes this less of a portable device. And the connectors are rubbish. Would be fine if the interface was on the ?200 range, but not for a ?500+ interface. For this to be worth ?500 plus they should have integrated the Track16 with the breakout box that they sell seperately for another ?120+ into one unit.

Audio quality in my opinion is pretty poor. I've done some measurements and it's less than desirable response for this price range. Also, the inputs and outputs levels are not matched. I've tried sending pink noise out of the balanced outputs straight into the balaced inputs with a 0dB gain structure all over and the balanced inputs gave me a reduction of about -4dB. Again, not acceptable for this price range.

Then software wise, you don't have any control whatsoever over the return from software input, you can only route it to an output without any level control. Or at least I couldn't find how to do it.

Latency is good tho, only giving you 0.51ms for a round trip at 96KHz. And the built quality is good too (apart from the b/out cable). This are the only 2 positive points I can consider on this device.

In conclusion, is an ok interface if you are not very demanding, but it's definitely not worth ?500+. The Track 16 should be in the ?200-?300 price range max as it is.

As a Live Sound Engineer i've been using a Lexicon Omega for the last 8 years for my acoustical measurements and some plugin processing and show recording and it seemed to me a much better product than this, with a much better audio quality and preamps, and a much more straight forward usability, specially considering the price tag.

My opinion, don't waste you money on this. find something cheaper, or better. Maybe spending a little more will give you better results and a better return for your bucks in the long term. I'm returning it and getting and RME interface, which should have done from the beginning.
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Total
quality
features
handling
sound

Good for the price!

Alexis, 20.02.2014
The Motu Track 16 is a big competitive to the Apogee Duet Version One and Version two as the same as the RME Babyface.

The Track 16 is a little bigger than the Duet and Babyface, the big advantage is that it is featuring a more detailed LED Meter for more parameters and the shortcut buttons for accessing the two Mic Inputs, the Guitar Inputs and the Phone Outs with just a single push.

The biggest advantage for me is the Standalone Mode because I want to listen to Music even without my Macbook. So i can connect a Mp3 Player and my Axe Fx Guitar Processor to it and mix those signals for my studio speakers.

I prefer the Firewire Port because I need my USB ports for other devices so the Duet was a no-go for me.

The Value knob is good but doesn't feel so nice like the one of the Duet.

Sound-wise the Track 16 is doing a really good job, it sounds really natural and open and the short latency is perfect for my needs.

The Breakoutbox is too expensive for me but it would really clean up my desk but Motu,100 bucks?
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  • Numer of AES/EBU Connectors: 0
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MusicRadar.com MOTU Track 16 Interface
MOTU Track 16 Interface
MusicRadar.com (12/2012)
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