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Focusrite Liquid Saffire 56 Firewire Interface

Thunderbolt compatible with Apple Firewire Adapter Cable (not included)

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Description

Reviews

Liquid Saffire 56 is Focusrite's new flagship 2U multi-channel firewire audio interface. Liquid technology combines with Saffire PRO firewire interfacing to deliver a host of authentic pre-amp flavours, seamless software integration, excellent routing flexibility and future-proof, rock-solid driver stability.

In addition to six of Focusrite's legendary mic-pre's, two of Liquid Saffire 56's pre-amps utilises the third generation of Focusrite's Liquid Pre-amp, providing the choice of ten different pre-amp emulations. These include emulations based on the Neve 1073, the Pultec MB-1, Telefunken V72 and seven more. A harmonics dial on each Liquid pre-amp lets you account for variance in vintage originals of the same model, or use levels of 2nd, 3rd and 5th Harmonic distortion creatively to shape your sound.

Liquid Saffire 56 doesn't just offer pre-amp variety; sonic integrity is also guaranteed throughout. Both the Liquid and Saffire pre-amps ensure low noise and distortion, whilst quality digital conversion and JetPLLTM jitter elimination technology ensure pristine audio quality as your audio flows between the analogue and digital domains.


Features

Two Liquid Pre-amps
The marriage of a hugely flexible analogue front end with cutting-edge dynamic convolution DSP, each Liquid Pre-amp lets you choose from ten different classic pre-amp emulations, with an eleventh 'flat' option.
Six High Quality Award-winning Focusrite Pre-amps
Six award-winning Saffire pre-amps complement two Liquid pre-amps. All eight pre-amps demonstrate the same wide bandwidth philosophy behind the early vintage Focusrite units.
High Quality 24-bit/192kHz Firewire Interface
Professional digital conversion and JetPLLTM jitter elimination technology; pristine audio quality and reliable synchronisation are guaranteed.
Total I/O Count of 28 Inputs and 28 Outputs
A host of i/o options are provided*, including a unique loop-back facility for routing audio between software applications via Saffire Mix Control.
Suite of Focusrite VST/AU plug-ins
Upgrade your standard sequencer effects and bring a touch of class to your session with Focusrite Compression, Reverb, Gating and EQ VST/AU plug-ins.
Two separate headphone buses
Two artists can receive independent and fully customised monitor mixes. Each output has an independent level control available on the front panel.
Saffire Mix Control Zero-latency DSP Mixer/Router
Routing flexibility and intuitive one-click set-up solutions; Saffire Mix Control provides an 18 x 16 DSP mixer with excellent output routing and monitoring capabilities.
Front panel 5-LED metering
LED metering for each of the analogue, ADAT1, ADAT2 or S/PDIF inputs offers accurate viewing of levels direct from the front fascia.


Specifications

  •  SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS WINDOWS
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP and Windows Vista
  • CPU/Clock: Athlon 900MHz or higher (1.5 GHz or higher recommended)
  • Memory (RAM): 512 MB (more recommended)

APPLE MAC

  • Operating System: Mac OS X 10.4.x or later
  • CPU/Clock: PowerPC G4/Dual 1 GHZ or faster or any Intel-based Mac
  • Memory (RAM): 512 MB (more recommended)


PERFORMANCE SPECIFICATIONS

Microphone Inputs

  • Frequency Response: 20Hz - 20kHz +/- 0.1 dB
  • THD+N: 0.001% (measured at 1kHz with a 20Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)
  • Noise: EIN > 125dB (128dB analogue to digital) (measured at 60dB of gain with 150 Ohm termination (20Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)

Line Inputs

  • Frequency Response: 20Hz - 20kHz +/- 0.1dB
  • THD+N: < 0.001% (measured with 0dBFS input and 22Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)
  • Noise: -90dBu (22Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)

Instrument Inputs

  • Frequency Response: 20Hz - 20kHz +/- 0.1dB
  • THD+N: 0.004% (measured with 0dBu input and 20Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)
  • Noise: -87dBu (20Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)

Conversion performance

  • Dynamic Range = 110dB (A-weighted)
  • Clock jitter < 250 picoseconds
  • THD+N AMPL = -109dBFS 'A' weighted

Front and Rear Connectivity

  • Analogue Channel Inputs (Inputs 1-8)
  • Mic inputs 1-8 on rear XLR's.
  • Line inputs 1-8 on rear 1/4" TRS.
  • Instrument inputs on channels 3 and 4 (separate front panel 1/4" TRS).

Notes

  • Individual switchable High Pass Filter on all inputs.
  • Phase switch on inputs 3, 5 and 7.
  • Input Pad on inputs 3 and 4 = -10dB.

Analogue Outputs

  • Line level 10 x 1/4" TRS Jack.

Notes

  • Outputs Monitor 1 and 2 have anti-thump protection circuitry.

Digital I/O

  • SPDIF input and output (RCA phono) on rear panel, (24-bit, 44.1 - 192kHz), output transformer isolated.
  • Optional AES output mode with professional channel status and voltage levels on SPDIF output (isolated and balanced). [Currently not implemented, a future update will include this feature].
  • 2 x ADAT In / Out 16 channels (44.1 / 48kHz), 8 channels S-MUX (88.2 / 96kHz),
  • 4 channels S-MUXII (176.4 / 192kHz).
  • ADAT Input and Output 2 can be re-configured to be optical SPDIF input /
    output via control panel.
  • BNC Word clock input and output (75 ohms).

MIDI I/O

  • 1 in / 1 out (16 channels) on rear panel.

HEADPHONE MONITORING

  • 2 x 1/4" TRS Jack on front panel (mirrors outputs 7-8 and 9-10).
    NOTE: These are high power headphone drivers.

Other I/O

  • 2 6-pin Firewire sockets
  • 2 Standard 5-pin DIN MIDI connectors: In and Out
  • IEC mains power input connector

Weight and Dimensions

  • 5kg / 11 Ibs
  • 350mm / 13.8" (W) x 90mm / 3.6" (H) x 235mm /9.3" (D) 

    Callum | Purchase date: 30 March 2013
    Rating

    Excellent interface, 8 high quality pres (two liquid). Saffire mix control may look daunting but is very straightforward with a good UI. Very good connectivity for the price, well built and great value for money.

    Overall: for most home studio users this does everything you could need

    Ryan | Purchase date: 15 January 2013
    Rating

    The focusrite liquid saffire 56 is a high quality, great sounding and flexible audio interface. I use a macbook pro and a Pro Tools 10 system and this interface integrated seamlessly with my system. The preamps are high quality, with low noise and a clean sound. The liquid preamps sound amazing, with a variety of different preamp emulations to choose from. My favourite is the new age which has a warm and aggressive sound. It has two DI instrument inputs which can record at the same time, but be warned that if you use active guitars or basses especially, their DI signal will be very hot, even with use of the pad. There are two headphone channels (with individual level controls), two main outs for your monitors and 8 addition line outputs. All these outputs are controlled by the single monitor control which features dim and mute. This interface comes with it's own mixer program which can be used to assign monitor mixes, assign the liquid preamp emulations, switching channels between mic, line and instrument, and assigning signal paths from inputs and outputs. This is a very versatile interface and with my setup I have a headphone amp, studio monitors, reamp box and microphones, all running from the liquid saffire. With this interface you also receive the Focusrite Scarlett Plugin Suite which features a high quality compressor, eq, reverb and gate.

    Laing | Purchase date: 29 November 2012
    Rating

    I allready had the focusrite pro 40 and couldnt really see how they could better an allready great product. But once i installed the focusrite mixer software and saw the new layout i realised they put a lot of thought into this to make it much easier to use. As for the two extra pre amp inputs that really puts the cat amongst the pigeons. The first thing i noticed was the individual controls for phantom power on each track. Where as on the pro 40 1-4 and 5-8was activated when phantom was used, here it was optional on any track at any time. You can set up 16 different mixes so that each member of the band can have there individual mix set to there particular instrument and then record them all live. Pure brilliant and without the use of a large cumbersome mixing desk . Set the focusrite on low latency evryone in the band has there own track from 1-8 and if your using eg. Cubase set 8 tracks to line in 1-8 and press record turn up the single dial on eachbtrack on the Focusrite till it becomes loud and clear . If you record the drums in stereo on eg. Track 7 8 go into the focusrite and change 7-8 into stereo. Remember to change the track in cubase for the drums from mono to a stereo track. Thats it you off now all you have to do is practice till you get it right . The quality of sound is astonishing and its free standing or fits in to a rack. Now i can add the Pro 40 plugged into the back of the saffire 56 and increase mt track input to16. Tracks1-8 line in assingned to saffire 56 and 9-16 through an adat lead for the pro40. All going through the same focusrite saffire56 mixer and into cubase tracks1-16. Perfect.

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