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Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

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Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby Phil Foster » Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:08 pm

Apogee Ensemble and Duet FireWire will not be compatible with OSX El Capitan. Very disappointing from Apogee. I think if you pay a premium price for a product such as an interface from a quality brand like Apogee you could reasonably expect them to support it for a decent amount of time. The Ensemble was only discontinued in 2013. Not impressed at all Apogee!
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby niallharp » Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:52 pm

I have a metric halo 2882, and uln2, both real eased over 10 years ago, both current.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby tomas » Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:58 pm

Indeed... I'm not happy that my Duet FW is soon to be recycled as a doorstop. However, they did support this unit for several years past ending production. This day had to come eventually, and they have already extended its useful life far beyond what many other manufacturers do. (Did you ever own any M-Audio gear?)

I just chatted with Apogee, because their email to registered owners suggested I have upgrade options. These are still being defined, and I was advised to check back on Monday.

Again, this would be more than what can be expected from most other manufacturers.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby Kwackman » Wed Sep 30, 2015 9:27 pm

tomas wrote:Indeed... I'm not happy that my Duet FW is soon to be recycled as a doorstop.

It will only become a doorstep if you upgrade your OS.
If you've no reason to upgrade (maybe you have), and the Duet is an important part of your set-up, why bother?

My FW Duet is registered, but as yet I haven't seen an email about upgrades.
Perhaps you bought yours more recently than I did, hope that works out for you.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby ken long » Wed Sep 30, 2015 9:41 pm

tomas wrote:their email to registered owners suggested I have upgrade options. These are still being defined, and I was advised to check back on Monday.

This will probably be... "buy a new Ensemble!"

I'm a little miffed too but tbh, I'm still on 10.6.8 OS. But if my current mac dies, my only solution will be to purchase another mac with similar specs... ie - not new.

Not good enough.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby Phil Foster » Wed Sep 30, 2015 10:01 pm

If we were talking about a cheaper brand I would agree - you couldn't really expect much support once the product is discontinued, even though I do think all should supply a good few years support whatever the cost of the product. However this is a premium brand with a premium price - over £1500 for the Ensemble. If I had bought one in Jan 2013 I would expect it to be supported for 5 years or more not 2! Even Apple supports it's discontinued hardware for longer. It's shoddy in my view and has definitely put me off buying from Apogee again.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby littleJ » Wed Sep 30, 2015 11:58 pm

hello,

i have an Apogee Ensemble on a 2008 Mac Pro.
today i received an email from Apogee saying:

This product will not be supported beyond Mac OS X Yosemite (10.10). Contact us to learn about upgrade options.

i've chatted with Don from Apogee on their website and he told me:

- they don't say it doesn't work..they only haven't tested it...and will not test it...
- the problem is Apple stopped developing the Firewire Core Audio driver. (which i find VERY strange but they are partners...so..they should know this better)
- since i don't have thunderbolt my options are Quartet or Symphony I/O.
- they won't encourage the update with discounts or take back programs.
- he suggested that i should stick to Yosemite and that all current Protools/Logic support 10.10.

then i showed some other music hardware companies on the news saying people should not upgrade to Él Capitan but the compatible "drivers" should arrive a couple of months later. i also saw some news saying core audio on Él Capitan was buggy even on the most recent betas. here, he changed is speech and said something like "if Apple give us the tools we need, we might do something", but i believe this was just a little diplomacy...

This Firewire Driver problem smells funny. i don't know but Apple as the main evangelist regarding Firewire, now, a huge part of firewire devices will have problems or will need major development to be 100%CORE AUDIO Compatible Again?? i just can't understand it. the Ensemble installation since 10.6 was just about installing the Maestro software and connect the interface...and the Maestro applications was updated but it was never up to date with the latest version used by the new products...why cut this tiny support out? who does this?

So, a company with a big connection to Apple, with premium products, in a group of 20 devices, drops only 2 regarding some problems with the (good old) connections? but in the mail i've received they don't say they will see or try to get it fixed. they just say...forget it...and buy us some new hardware. why do they talk about a driver issue if they say they didn't tested it and will not do it? :frown:

As a software developer myself i wouldn't mind trying to make the Maestro Software compatible with Él Capitan for my Ensemble.
This was very sad news for me.

Thanks,

J.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby ConcertinaChap » Thu Oct 01, 2015 5:28 pm

Phil Foster wrote:It's shoddy in my view and has definitely put me off buying from Apogee again.

I agree. Were it to be supported I would anticipate using my Ensemble for a good few years to come, it's a fine piece of kit. Maybe the current drivers will work with 10.11, maybe they won't, but sooner or later they'll fail. Either way the resale value of my Ensemble has just dropped dramatically.

There's lots not to like about Avid, but this is good. They have a rule that products will be de-supported 5 years after the last unit is made. This means that the end of support date is shown on their website years in advance and you know where you stand. It's a good system. What a shame Apogee haven't copied it.

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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby Phil Foster » Thu Oct 01, 2015 7:27 pm

The 5 year rule should be industry standard especially for premium products. Apogee thinking this is acceptable says a lot about it's principles as a business and what it thinks of it's customers. Speaks volumes really.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby tomas » Thu Oct 01, 2015 8:58 pm

All above are good points. I bought my Duet FW years ago on eBay for about €250 as I recall. I've had good use of it. It's a great interface and I was astonished by the difference it made to my M-Audio ProjectMix (that I still own, by the way, now it's only collecting dust).

Obsolescence is built into any hardware that relies on software. That's a fact we need to learn to live with. We also need to live with Apple's insistant urge to change connectors on their computers. One day it's AppleTalk, then it's SCSI, UBS, FW, ThunderBolt, and who knows what's next?

Of course old hardware can't keep up with being current in this mess. I don't like it, but I do understand the hard decisions Apogee had to make in order to meet their business objectives.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby johnny h » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:15 pm

tomas wrote:I don't like it, but I do understand the hard decisions Apogee had to make in order to meet their business objectives.
Except that other high end companies don't make these decisions. RME even recently released "Totalmix" for their long discontinued Fireface 400/800 series.

Apogee make very expensive products and are therefore expected to provide a high level of support. There is absolute no reason to trust Apogee again, and I'd advise anyone to go with a company that have consistently earned their reputation for excellent quality and support, like RME or Metric Halo.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby ken long » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:22 pm

just got this from then... slightly different to first email

Due to the fact that Apple is no longer developing their FireWire Core Audio Driver, Apogee’s Duet FireWire and Ensemble FireWire will not be officially supported on OS X 10.11 El Capitan or any future Mac OS X release. While these products may work normally for some users, Apogee will not be able to provide technical support, troubleshooting or bug fixes for any software related issues you experience on OS X 10.11 El Capitan or higher. Please note, Apogee will continue to fully support our FireWire users who remain on Mac OS X 10.10 or below, just as we have done since the products were first introduce in 2006. In addition, we will continue to provide repair services for the hardware components as long as parts continue to be available.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby littleJ » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:27 pm

Received this mail from Apogee:

"Dear Apogee User,

In 2003, Apogee released Mini-Me & Mini-DAC, which were the first interfaces to utilize Apple’s FireWire Core Audio driver, included in Apple’s Mac OS X. Duet FireWire, Ensemble FireWire along with several audio interfaces from other manufacturers’ also take advantage of this driver, meaning that the audio driver needed for your Duet FireWire or Ensemble FireWire comes with your Mac and is supported by Apple. Relying on Apple’s Core Audio driver offers many benefits - low latency performance, outstanding OS integration and the resources of Apple’s superior engineering team. Apple began to phase out FireWire connectivity in 2012 on all Mac computers. With significant improvements to USB audio and the introduction of Thunderbolt, the performance and stability offered with FireWire audio interfaces has been surpassed. As a result, Apple has discontinued development and maintenance of their FireWire Core Audio driver for the new Mac OS X El Capitan. For this reason, we simply cannot ensure a stable/reliable experience for users of our FireWire audio interfaces who choose to upgrade to this new Mac OS release.

Due to the fact that Apple is no longer developing their FireWire Core Audio Driver, Apogee’s Duet FireWire and Ensemble FireWire will not be officially supported on OS X 10.11 El Capitan or any future Mac OS X release. While these products may work normally for some users, Apogee will not be able to provide technical support, troubleshooting or bug fixes for any software related issues you experience on OS X 10.11 El Capitan or higher. Please note, Apogee will continue to fully support our FireWire users who remain on Mac OS X 10.10 or below, just as we have done since the products were first introduce in 2006. In addition, we will continue to provide repair services for the hardware components as long as parts continue to be available.

We sincerely apologize for this inconvenience and thank you for your understanding.


Exclusive Offers for Apogee's Registered FireWire Users
Receive FREE Apogee Groove with Purchase of New Duet, Quartet or Ensemble
Receive FREE Apogee ONE for iPad/Mac with Purchase of New Ensemble

For a limited time, if you purchase a new Duet or Quartet and send us your Apogee FireWire interface, we will send you a FREE Apogee Groove. Alternatively, purchase a new Ensemble Thunderbolt and send us your Apogee FireWire interface to receive a FREE Apogee ONE for iPad & Mac or Apogee Groove."



It's easy for me to understand the removal of floppy disks or cd/dvd drives or ethernet ports or even firewire ports...hardware.
It's easy for me to understand some software like the Dashboard that stopped being developed.
It's not easy for me to understand the removal of some low lever software that makes Pro Hardware (last sold two years ago) stop working...that's really sad.
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby littleJ » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:43 pm

"Due to the fact that Apple is no longer developing their FireWire Core Audio Driver, Apogee’s Duet FireWire and Ensemble FireWire will not be officially supported on OS X 10.11 El Capitan or any future Mac OS X release."

People are still able to buy firewire interfaces -> http://www.sweetwater.com/store/search.php?s=firewire&sb=score&params=eyJmYWNldCI6eyJDYXRlZ29yeSI6WyI2NzZcLzY4MiJdfX0

What can we assume if Universal Audio or some other manufacter is able to give their customers Él Capitan Firewire support in a near future?
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Re: Ensemble & Duet FireWire no longer supported by Apogee.

Postby ConcertinaChap » Thu Oct 01, 2015 10:30 pm

Well I have a little more sympathy for their position, though the One/Groove offer is downright pointless. I'm intending to stay on Mavericks as long as possible, glad I downloaded a copy of Yosemite last week, though.

Still feeling very grumpy, not that I suppose that bothers Apple/Apogee too much ...

littleJ wrote:People are still able to buy firewire interfaces


And there are PCs that have Firewire that can, presumably use them, except, oh gosh, the Ensemble is Mac only.

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