The Zoom TAC-8 Thunderbolt Audio Interface takes full advantage of today's latest Thunderbolt technology, allowing you to record large, multi-channel 24-bit/192k sessions at near-zero latency. It's been designed to be the central hub of your recording setup. With 8 analogue inputs and 10 analogue outputs, as well as 10 digital inputs and ouputs (both ADAT and S/PDIF Optical formats), plus Word Clock and MIDI I/O this is one serious piece of kit.
Thunderbolt gives you a whole lot more power and speed to play with. It's allows signals to be transferred at an increasable 10 Gbps (gigabites-per-second). This is more than twice as fast than USB 3.0, twenty times faster than USB 2.0 and twelve times faster than Firewire 800. Co-developed by Apple and Intel Labs, Thunderbolt is the interconnection technology of the future and allows for near-zero latency. The Tac-8 is also unaffected by computer jitter.
With 8 analogue inputs, you can record guitar, bass, vocals and drums all at once. Or you could fully mic up a drum kit and use all 8 inputs, or anything in between. But the TAC -8 can also be used outside the confines of a studio. It allows you to use your laptop onstage with high quality sound. Simply connect the TAC-8 to your laptop over Thunderbolt, then connect the rear TRS inputs to your mixing board or PA system, and not you have an onstage rig which you can monitor and adjust in real time. You can also now take advantage of virtual effects and instruments, with 10 analogue outs you can customize your rig to your needs.
The TAC-8 offers a wide variety of both analogue and digital connects. Eight combo XLR/TRS inputs accept anything from mic to line level signals. Inputs 1 and 2 also feature Hi-Z technology, accepting instrument level signals from guitars and basses. Each input has its own dedicated gain controls and clip LED's, making it easy to set optimum input levels. The selectable multi-channel Phantom Power feature allows for the use of condenser microphones.
The rear of the TAC-8 features two balanced analogue TRS output jacks. These allow you to output the device to amplifiers you self-powered (active) speakers. 8 Balanced TRS analogue line outputs allow for multichannel monitoring, or to connect external effects. The main output level is controlled by a large front panel knob. Two 1/4" headphone jacks which are independent from all this and have their own dedicated volume controls.
The TAC-8 also works as a digital I/O with ADAT and S/PDIF digital inputs/outputs, allowing for the use of up to 10 inputs from external interfaces as well as 10 outputs. This totals to 18 inputs and 20 outputs for the whole of the TAC-8. MIDI In/Out means you can use electronic keyboards, sequencers, and drum machines and a World Clock input allows for syncing between devices. The use of Thunderbolt ensures precise audio and MIDI.
A Standalone mode turns the TAC-8 into a standalone 8-channel mic preamp and an analogue-to-digital or digital-to-analogue converter without needing to be connected to a computer. It can perform 4x upsampling during both digital-to-analogue and analogue-to-digital conversions. When the sampling frequency is set to 44.1kHz or 48kHz, the TAC-8 processes the signal at high resolution 176.4kHz or 192kHz respectively. This makes for more clarity and fidelity during A/D conversion.
The main features of the Zoom TAC-8 Thunderbolt Audio Interface include:
- 18-in/20-out high speed Thunderbolt audio interface
- Record and play back 8 tracks simultaneously
- Support for up to 24-bit/192kHz high-definition audio
- Ultra-low latency audio streaming
- 8 combo balanced XLR/TRS analog input connectors accept both mic and line-level signal
- High-performance mic preamps with up to +60dB of amplification
- Hi-Z switches allow direct connection of electric guitar or bass (input 1, input 2)
- Independent gain controls and clip LEDs for each input
- Switchable +48V phantom power (INPUTS 1-4, INPUTS 5-8)
- 10 balanced TRS output jacks for connection to mixers, amplifiers, self-powered speakers, or effects devices
- Dual front-panel 1/4" headphone outputs with dedicated volume controls
- Large knob output volume control
- 4x upsampling during A/D and D/A conversion for reduced noise and enhanced fidelity
- Asynchronous transfer system unaffected by computer jitter
- Robust metal housing ensures roadworthiness
- S/PDIF IN/OUT: 2IN / 2OUT, up to 24-bit/192kHz audio resolution
- ADAT Optical IN/OUT: 2 IN / 2 OUT at 192/176.4kHz (S/MUX4 compatible), 4 IN/4 OUT at 96/88.2kHz (S/MUX compatible), 8 IN / 8 OUT at 48/44.1kHz
- Word Clock in/out
- Clock source indicator
- MIDI in/out
- Rack-mountable (1U space)
- Works with all Thunderbolt-equipped Macintosh computers running OS X 10.8.5 or later
- Steinberg Cubase LE software download