Would this work for adding external preamps?

Don't take my word as The Whole Truth And Nothing But The Truth, but I think 2408 can send it's analog inputs to TDIF, in which case this setup should work just fine. But as you have DM-4800 the better option (just my opinion) would buy analog cards for your DM ... unless you already own a 2408.
Second That.
The 2408 WILL take an analog preamp's line level signal and convert it to digital, sending it into the DM via either ADAT or TDIF. It has 8 analog inputs/outputs, but will connect 24 channels of TDIF or ADAT into your DM. it's a pretty useful device, but, if you don't already have a 2408, an add-in analog card is probably a better use of funds for 8 channels of A/D and D/A conversion.
I think Jarno's thought about the advantage of using an analog card (IF-AN/DM) stems from the recurrent opinion here that the digital to analog conversiion seems to be at it's best when using the originating device's clocking. Ie., when using the 2408, it's sampling clock will need to act either as a slave clock (from your DM) or master clock (to your DM) when converting the preamp's analog signal to digital. By using the add-on analog card, the DM uses it's own internal clock for all inputs, (M/Ls, assn returns, etc.) even those within the add-on card, resulting in (possibly, and very arguably) a better sounding analog to digital conversion.
Makes sense, i didn't think about the clock, i was thinking how inexpensive an older 2408 is compared to the if-an/dm.

For now i am using he AUX returns that is 8 in
I'm curious about why you want to do this in the first place. Are you finding the 24 m/l inputs not enough? Is it a preamp quality issue? I've toyed with the idea of getting a Focusrite Octopre mkII connected to the adat inputs on the dm to gain 8 additional analog inputs?
I was in a pro studio a few weeks ago, they used Neve preamps on my drums and they sound amazing.

To me the preamps in the DM sound transparent, they reproduce what they are given, i like them very much but those Neves sound really great, warm and big.

I am considdering a Neve clone DIY project down the road and i am gathering info.
I've never even used the analog channel inputs on my DM3200. I use an external AD converter that feeds a combination of digital inputs on the board to get signal into it. I wish they made an AES16 card so I could bring all my inputs into one slot but currently I use SMUX and TDIF for the other 8 channels (at 88 or 96) to bring in 16 channels of external mic pres. It works fantastically. I would love to have a DM4800 simply for the extra slot that would allow a second AES card.

I started my setup with a DM24/2408mk3 but had the pre's connected by splitting them at a patchbay to feed both the mixer line inputs and an AD converter. I'll spare the details but this setup worked and sounded fine for years. When I finally upgraded to the DM3200 and connected all digitally from the external AD with an IF-FW/DM as my interface my world shifted. I don't know what the real difference was coming from but the sound quality of what is coming out of the monitors now is absolutely stunning both during tracking and playback. I've had many long term clients that have spoken up unprompted about the same thing after the upgrade. These are people who wouldn't know a digital mixer from a stand mixer in the kitchen.

I cannot encourage you enough to pursue integrating some external mic pres into your setup. I'm sure the board preamps are fine but my neve's, api's and other boutique preamps finally sound like the money I spent so long ago. When I run the board out to the studio mains for a rehearsal the vocals just sound stunning. Strong, clear, full and powerful. It's ridiculous how great it sounds to rehearse in the main room. So yeah, do it!
Hi folks, my first post on this forum. So glad I found you. I resolved two head scratchers the first night I joined by reading other posts.

And this thread has me wondering, since I have an unused 2408: would it I/O with my 3200's TDIF, without installing the PCI card in a computer? I don't need it to get audio in and out of my PC, but it would be a huge boost in connectivity for my Tascam. I'm guessing 'no' but does anybody have a solid yes or no?

Thanks for your big brains!
As stated earlier in this thread...YES, the 2408 will work with the 3200's TDIF. All 24 channles of it! (12 channles in smux mode) I had mine setup that way for a while. Just make sure you get TDIF cables, not standard DB25 analog or aes cables. I think the pinout is different and they are not compatable.
Hi Tascman, thanks for the reply. My question though, had one specific variable: Will it work without installing the MOTU PCI card, and just using the 2408 front end as an interface? I think that was not specifically mentioned anywhere. Thanks!!
The 2408 will stand alone as a format converter without a 424 card and connect via TDIF or ADAT. I am currently using it as a format converter in my studio to go from ADAT SMUX to TDIF. In that application it will echo the SMUX to all three TDIF connections. I can see no reason why you couldn't use the analog inputs to convert to TDIF.
How cool is that? Very cool. Thanks!
Same here. I got mine on ebay a few years ago, and never had the card. You lose the GUI for their mixer, but you can do all the input and clock settings on the frount. Bring your glasses thought, the writing is very small.
I would just use the DM press which are quite good for uncolored work. For character pres, which IMO a 2408 is not, I use and suggest a Lunchbox setup, which can serve up gobs of flavored pre, EQ and comp work. Sell your unused 2408 to help fund it. Having said all this I have used/tested a Digi 003 via ADAT, a Digi 192 digital via TDIF and now an Avid HD 8x8x8 mic pres again using TDIF and they all worked, but the DM 4800 in my case sounded just as good for transparent recording.
Just to be clear, the MOTU 2408 does not have any preamps in it. It only converts 8 channels of line input/output audio to/from a Digital signal (via ADAT or TDIF) or Stereo S/PDif as well and can send back out 8 chans of analog, 24 channels of ADAT and 24 Chans of TDIF. You would patch your seperate analog preamp into it.

The lunch box suggestion is a good one though. Lots of new cool stuff out there for that.
I am goingto be tracking some drums this week, think I am Igoing to use my Black Lion Autuer for overheads, my wa12 for snare top and my Art Pro Channel with NOS tubes for kick and run the toms and snare bottom through the stock preamps. I think this will yield some nice drum sounds.

The external preamps are going in to the DM via the assignable returns
TascMan said:
Just to be clear, the MOTU 2408 does not have any preamps in it. It only converts 8 channels of line input/output audio to/from a Digital signal (via ADAT or TDIF) or Stereo S/PDif as well and can send back out 8 chans of analog, 24 channels of ADAT and 24 Chans of TDIF. You would patch your seperate analog preamp into it.

The lunch box suggestion is a good one though. Lots of new cool stuff out there for that.

wow I thought it had em otherwise I'm truly missing the point then, since the DM 3200/4800 give you so much I/O and is newer tech.. Without a master clock which I do recommend and use in my rig adding another idgital device is asking for potential jitter. Although one other device slaved to the DM clock which is very good would be safe. OP are you needing extra line level I/O for synths or ???
OK, so I am a little confused and have an on / off topic question based on all this.

If I plug the output of an external preamp into the Line In / Balanced 1/4 am I going through 2 preamps?

Or am I essentially doing a preamp to a line amp and simply using an external pre.

I may be way off on what I am asking so please excuse the uneducated ask if I am way off base.

Yes, you going through two preamps. But, only because the line in on the channel input uses the same gain function as the Mic preamp of the same channel. This is useful if you have -10 equipment that you want to match with +4 equipment.
If you set your preamp out signal to a normal level, under 0db at all times, and adjust the channel gain knob to keep the same level, you will be fine. Only the return portion of the channel inserts or the assign returns are preamp free. Not to mention the outputs of a motu 2408 or the 8 channel add in analog card.
The problem there I see is a lot of the time to get the color out of a preamp you need to drive it.

So would there be a problem keeping the gain all the way down on the DM and driving the levels with the external pre going into the line in?

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