Metric Halo ULN-8 Digital Audio Processor

Metric Halo ULN-8 Digital Audio Processor Building upon the experience gained with the Mobile I/O 2882 and ULN-2, we set out to design an integrated product to literally provide the best performance in each of its component sections while still providing all of the benefits of tight integration in a single field-capable package. The ULN-8 is the result of that development program.

The ULN-8 incorporates a number of new Metric Halo Audio technologies including:

  • 192k sample rate support for both Analog and AES Inputs and Outputs
  • New DC-coupled, zero phase distortion, servo balanced Line Inputs and Outputs
  • ULN-R next generation remote controlled preamp technology. The Mic Pres in the ULN-8 build upon the audio performance pioneered by the ULN-2 preamp design with the additional benefit and technological innovation of full clickless remote control of the ULN Mic pre. This is accomplished with a sophisticated gain switching mechanism which incorporates Metric Halo “zero-cross” technology.
  • Fully clickless remote controlled Monitor outputs. All ULN-8 analog outputs incorporate Metric Halo clickless remote technology allowing for flexible monitoring applications from stereo to 7.1 surround.



Integration for the Win

By implementing all the functions of a complete audio front end in a single package, the ULN-8 is able to provide unprecedented power and quality in a lightweight, low-power consumption, single RU hardware unit. This integration provides significant benefits to the owner in the form of reduced cabling (lower cost, weight and less opportunity for failure), weight, power consumption, and cost, while at the same time providing unprecedented performance.

What does integration mean to you? Rather than pay for duplicate case work, duplicate power supplies and redundant interconnects, you get a product where all the components are engineered to work together and everything you pay for is dedicated to providing functionality towards the execution of your task. But the benefits don’t stop there. By tuning all the functional blocks of the system and removing external interconnects, the ULN-8 provides enhanced performance and reduced chance of failure from external influences. Connectors and cables are all potential sources of failure and interference. By eliminating preamp to converter and converter to interface cabling, these sources of cost and potential failure and interference are also eliminated. Internal operating levels within the box are tuned for optimal performance.

The ULN-8’s integrated design provides maximal performance with a minimum use of material and power.


ULN-8 Key Benefits at a Glance

  • Exceptional, Best–In–World, Archival Grade Converter Quality
  • Exceptional, Boutique–Quality Mic Preamps
  • Flexible, Integrated Analog-Domain Monitor Controller
  • Universal Sample Rate Support
  • Analog, AES and Firewire Interfacing
  • Rock Solid Stability: Mature, Real-World-Tested Firmware, Software and Drivers
  • Instant Access to Tactile Controls
  • Fully digital control for total recall, remote control and control surface support
  • Comprehensive Precision Metering — so you always know what is going on
  • Works with or without a Computer
  • Metric Halo’s Exclusive Per-channel selectable Character — from ultra clean to nice and gooey
  • Integrated ultra-low-latency instantiable processing with plenty of DSP power to run it
  • Most Compact, Lowest Weight, Lowest Power and Lowest Price in its Class


Suite Solution

With everything you need to record, mix, process, and master audio (just add your DAW of choice and transducers), the ULN-8 is your one-stop solution for recording, edit, mix and mastering suites. Even if you are using a DAW or recording system that does not support the ULN-8 Firewire interface, the unit’s standalone operation and standard AES and analog interface allow you to use it as the Audio Front End and Monitor Controller for Pro Tools, standalone and PC based recording systems.

The ULN-8 Starts Where Other Interfaces End

All these features make for an impressive package, but we’re just beginning. The ULN-8 is built around Metric Halo’s 2d DSP platform, giving you the power to run multiple mixers and plug-ins inside the box. It also includes a full +DSP license, giving you the ability to create powerful mixing, sound design and master plug-ins. Beauty and brains, in 1RU.

ULN-8 Features in Depth

  • 8 Channels of Archival Grade 192k A/D converters
    • Exceptionally flat, low-distortion A/D conversion
    • DC-coupled for ultra-low phase distortion
  • 8 Channels of Archival Grade 192k D/A converters
    • Exceptionally flat, low-distortion D/A conversion
    • DC-coupled for ultra-low phase distortion
  • 2 Channels of Archival Grade 192k D/A converters with integrated headphone amp
    • Same high-quality DC-coupled conversion
    • Dedicated, digitally controlled high-power headphone amplifier
  • 8 Channels of Exceptional Remote Controllable Ultra-Low-Noise Clickless Preamps
    • Custom designed Digitally Controlled analog preamps
    • Metric Halo Zero-Cross switching technology for clickless operation
    • Discreet gain and trim stages for ultra-high headroom operation (supports +20 dBu input)
  • Analog Send/Return architecture for analog access to preamps (pre A/D)
    • Analog domain sends from preamps (mult’ed pre-A/D)
    • Analog only preamp operation capable (with fine trim)
    • Integrated switcher to allow insert of external analog processing pre-A/D
  • 2 Channels of Exceptional DI inputs suitable for instrument or turntable inputs
    • Ultra-High-Z for no instrument loading
    • Balanced or unbalanced operation
    • Jumper configurable pre-trim gain
  • Integrated Surround Monitor Controller
    • Provides switching between any set of user specified sources (FW, AES, Analog, Mix)
    • Analog domain gain control for monitor output from Front Panel or computer
    • Supports input and monitor paths from Mono to 7.1
  • 8 Channels of 192k capable AES Inputs and Outputs
    • Available as computer I/O or direct routed I/O for converters
    • Support full channel count at all sample rates
    • Professional interfacing
  • Comprehensive Front Panel Controls
    • Full support for standalone converter and preamp operation
      • Sample Rate selection
      • Clock source selection
      • Input source selection
      • Phantom power control
    • Tactile Control of Input and Output gains
      • Gain level indication with MH Digital Dual Vernier Technology
      • Numeric gain level indication while changing gains
    • Tactile Control Cans level
    • Tactile Control Monitor Controller gain (mono – 7.1)
    • Preset recall
    • Multichannel gain linking control
    • Monitor Controller control surface
    • User-controllable brightness
    • User-controllable knob sensitivity
  • Comprehensive, High Resolution 15 Segment Precision Front Panel Metering
    • Real, functional metering for analog inputs and outputs
    • Unique ‘Meter on knob’ functionality
    • Multi-color signal level/presence metering for AES inputs and outputs
  • Comprehensive Clocking (Internal, Word Clock, AES)
  • Dedicated internal clock sources for all rates
  • Dedicated MIDI I/O for Control Surface interfacing
    • MIDI Input and Output on standard DIN connectors
    • MIDI transported to computer via FireWire for use in connecting Mackie Control protocol Control Surfaces
  • Dedicated SMPTE LTC I/O for Timecode without sacrificing any audio channels
    • Properly conditioned and band-limited SMPTE I/O on TRS balanced connections
    • Available to any CoreAudio application as audio streams
    • Directly routable to Record Panel SMPTE decoder
  • Rock-solid, time-tested fifth-generation software and drivers
    • Integrated Mixing and Deep Instantiable DSP Processing (Includes Full +DSP License)
      • Fully configurable multibus mixer with surround support (up to 7.1)
      • Full Send/Return architecture
      • Ultra-low latency, on-the-metal monitoring
      • Insert model for inserting zero-latency plugins
      • Insertable +DSP plugin graphs for configurable processing
      • Insertable graph macros for complex, pre-configured processing
      • Includes over 100 high-quality processing plugins, including:
        • MIOStrip — channel strip processing
        • Dynamics (Compressor and Limiter)
        • Transient Controller
        • EQ (6 band and 12 band)
        • Signal Processing primitives
        • Crossovers
        • and much more…
      • Per-channel and Per-bus Insertable Character™
    • FireWire Interfacing with ultra-stable, ultra low-latency drivers (FW400 & FW800 supported)
      • Supports Mac OS X v. 10.4 and newer (PPC and Intel)
      • Supports 32-bit and 64-bit kernels
    • Bidirectional Control Surface Support
      • Integrated Front Panel Tactile Controls
      • Eucon Control Surfaces
      • Mackie Control Protocol Control Surfaces
    • Integrated Multichannel Recorder (Record Panel)
      • Multichannel, multi-box tape-style high-performance recorder
      • Exceptional Stability and Sound Quality
      • Realtime waveform display
      • Extensive File Format support (BWF, WAVE, CAF, AIFF, SD2)
      • BWF timestamping from TOD or LTC (any input channel or dedicated SMPTE input)
      • Support for basic BWF metadata
      • Support for limiting record file size and seamless file breaking
      • Seamless manual file breaking (with timestamping)
      • Support for mirrored recording (recording to two drives at once)
      • Multichannel take playback
  • DC-Powerable
  • High quality, custom designed formed powder-coated aluminum case
    • Strong
    • Light weight
    • Scratch and fingerprint resistant
    • Smooth contours for snag-free transportation in a gig-bag
    • Rack-mountable with included rack-ear kit
  • Exceptional Power Performance (only 32 Watts)
  • Low mass (9 lbs / 4.1 kg)
  • Extremely Compact (everything in 1 RU)
  • Future Proof, Expandable, and software-enhanceable


At Home in Any Situation

ULN-8 is the perfect tool for capturing audio wherever inspiration hits, in the studio or on the road. Well suited to any recording situation, you can record and edit on the road, in the hotel, on the airplane, or wherever inspiration hits. Use 3 ULN-8 chained together for 24 tracks of live concert recording with processing on all channels in 3 rack spaces. Location sound engineers can now capture the moment — anywhere, anytime.

When you’re done recording, use the ULN-8 in the studio as an extremely high quality audio interface to transfer your tracks into a DAW. You’ll be amazed at the sound of this box! And weighing only 9 pounds, and a little larger than a laptop, you can be the first one out of the gig, with no hassle.

The ULN-8’s archival grade inputs and outputs, coupled with Metric Halo’s exclusive Character processing, provide flexibility and sound quality unavailable on any other interface. You can transition from a wire-with-gain to a gooey tube pre with one click of the mouse, and every input can have the right character for the material you are recording.

The ULN-8 is the only unit in its class with an on-board processing engine that supports fully instantiable processing, allowing you to use Metric Halo’s world-renowned signal processing effects without sacrificing your computer’s processing power or introducing any additional latency in your monitor path. From MIOStrip to HaloVerb, the ULN-8 comes with a full +DSP license that provides all the basic production processing you need — and more. And remember, this one rack space audio interface has the ability to run entirely from any DC power source (16V-30V), making it truly and completely mobile.


Organically Scalable

A unique feature of the Mobile I/O system is that MIO’s work well individually or as a group. Mix and match ULN-8 with 2882 and ULN-2 units to create a system that meets your needs for track count and preamp power. Adding a unit to the system organically increases the DSP power of the system, so that your DSP always scales with your I/O. Break your system up for small gigs when playing out or add the units of your mates to build a huge system when required. By standardizing on the Mobile I/O platform, each member of the band can have ultimate quality while working alone, and the band can have huge track counts when playing together. You can’t lose!

Stand-alone Operation

Flexible signal routing and sophisticated patch and preset management systems as well as a comprehensive set of front panel controls are also featured in the ULN-8. The ULN-8’s front-panel controls allow the unit to function equally as well as a stand-alone Mic Pre/Converter system. In standalone mode, the ULN-8 operates with the converters directly routed to and from the AES I/O, and the analog domain sends allow purely analog operation of the preamps.

As a standalone converter, the ULN-8 provides a 24bit/192kHz eight channel front-end with 8 world-class boutique-quality ULN mic pres for any recording system. It also functions seamlessly as a analog monitor controller, making it ideal as digital headphone amp and studio monitor controller.


The ULN-8 supports a variety of applications. For studio recording, it provides a very high quality interface to a DAW, offering sound processing or simple file transfer between workstations. Its exceptional sound quality makes it perfect as any studio’s primary analog to digital conversion and monitoring chain. Songwriters and engineers can use the ULN-8 to record and edit on the road, in the hotel, while traveling, or anywhere that inspiration strikes.

The ULN-8 is suitable for broadcast applications, too. It offers instant playback of 8 individual stereo sends for music cues or sound effects, or smaller numbers of surround stems. The compact package and portable power features mean that the unit can go anywhere users need to work, and make on-site fixes or edit location recordings without the need to send files back to the studio, saving valuable time before air.

In the live performance arena, in addition to operating as a remote recorder for archiving performances or to play out backing tracks and musical cues, the ULN-8 can operate as a soft-synth mixer and I/O interface.

ULN-8: Built upon the 2d DSP Processing Platform and MIO Console 5

The ULN-8 is built upon the 2d Card — a massive DSP processing engine that forms the nerve center of the ULN-8. The 2d Card provides a substantial amount of DSP power to drive the zero-latency mixing and processing environment that is integrated in the ULN-8 and also provides 8 channels of 192k AES I/O.

Future Proof

In 2001 we introduced the 2882 and called it “Future Proof”. Eight years later, while the competition has obsoleted multiple generations of products, the 2882 was still arguably the best FireWire interface available on the market… until the introduction of the ULN-8. In 2003, we released the ULN-2, with the finest preamps available in any interface — until now. With the release of the 2d Card and v.5, we delivered yet again on our commitment to making “Future Proof” products that stand the test of time. The ULN-8 the next entry in our line-up of Future Proof products.

While other manufacturers churn you with the special of the day, we build products that preserve your investment and deliver for you year after year and project after project. It is our philosophy and we take it seriously.

Includes the Integrated v.5 Mixer

Included with every ULN-8, the v.5 Mixer is a completely customizable mixing engine. You can create custom mixers either from scratch or start with any of the templates we’ve included to get you started quickly. With the v.5 Mixer, your ULN-8 can be a mastering console in the morning, a tracking console in the afternoon, and a live sound mixer/recorder in the evening. Whatever the application, you can configure an elegant custom setup.

Not a mere computer interface cue mixer, the v.5 Mixer is a sophisticated Digital Console built into the the ULN-8. With support for mono to 7.1 mixing, multiple busses, arbitrary sends, insertable zero-latency plug-in processing, completely customizable mults, and Metric Halo’s exclusive Character, the v.5 Mixer is limited only by your imagination. And, it is completely phase compensated, no matter how complicated the routing is.

“I have the ULN-8 wired into my rack and I use it every single day. The Metric Halo v.5 software/hardware is like having an analog console in a 1-U box. The combination of hardware and software is unmatched in it’s routing flexibility. With processing available on every track, I can mix anywhere!”

Latency-Free, Time-Aligned Mixing Architecture

The v.5 Mixer is based upon the +DSP graph technology originally designed for +DSP. Since the +DSP graph provides infinite routing and multing capabilities with integrated latency compensation, the addition of full access to all I/O resources means that everything can go everywhere in the ULN-8, with the unique benefit that all signal paths are automatically time-aligned. This has incredible implications — you can route anything anywhere and never have to worry about routing delays. All sends and busses are automatically realigned with the primary bus, bringing back analog simplicity to parallel routing, with digital simplicity in set up and recall.

The v.5 Mixer manages all of the plug-ins and connections within the DSP for you. So, even though you may be creating an incredibly complex network of plug-ins with many mults and bus to bus routes, the user interaction required for you to control the system is simple and direct.

The v.5 Mixer works as complex routing manager, adding plug-ins (including mixer plug-ins) to the DSP based upon your configuration commands. Because the +DSP engine automatically configures the runtime environment to compensate for routing latency in the configured DSP graph, you can rely on the fact that bus to bus routes all arrive with no routing latency. This allows you to configure sub-mixes and stems, including sub-bus processing, without having to worry about phase-cancellation problems or other latency related issues.

“The MIO v.5 Console and 2d Card’s routing capabilities are unmatched, its DSP processing unrivaled, and its familiar mixer interface ensures that this power and flexibility is easily accessible…” — Orren Merton
Author of Logic Pro 8 Power
Read More…

Direct Insert of Plug-ins

With the v.5 Mixer, you can now take advantage of a sophisticated direct insert model. Just insert the plug where you want to process the signal. Done!

v.5 Mixer Direct Plug-in Insert (in the inserts!)


Of course, with the included +DSP license, you are not limited to simply putting plugs in inserts and simple linear routing of Plug-ins. You can always insert a +DSP graph in any insert in the mixer to add a routing playground, allowing you to split, mult, parallel and feedback signals to your heart’s content. And then you can save the graphs as your own “Secret Weapons” – instantly instantiable with two mouse clicks.

“…I find myself ‘mixing into’ the ULN-8 as if it were a high-end console with a quality channel strip and limiter on each channel.  The Character processing on each channel does a great job of adding the vibe of various tube and transformer inputs to the mix and as always, the huge assortment of Metric Halo plug-ins sound great and are really easy to use…” — Jerry Schroeder
Read More…

Multi-Bus Mixing

The v.5 Mixer allows you to create an arbitrary number of busses (limited only by the capabilities of your hardware) — each of which can be used as a master bus (routed to an output) or an aux bus (routed to other busses). Each bus is dynamically adjustable from mono to 7.1 surround. The busses can be mapped directly onto the main control UI or driven by sends. Basically, make the mixer what you need it to be. And multiple busses of multiple types are supported at all sample rates. Unlike some other products on the market, all inputs can be routed to all busses (even mults of any input), so you won’t be limited in what you can mix.

v.5 Multiple Busses, Multiple Types, and Sends

“…With the ULN-8 and the v.5 Mixer it’s like the MIO Console’s gone from black and white to Technicolor. First of all, the routing is simple because — just like in a hardware console — all the functionality of the mixer is incorporated into the channels themselves. Input assignments, trims, EQ, effects, pans, output assignments: all in one place. Sends and sub-mixes pop up as floating auxiliary mixers. And the console is completely customizable – from the numbers of inputs and outputs down to the colors of the strips themselves…” — Lolly Lewis
Transparent Recordings
Read More…


As mentioned above, any input can be sent to any bus. Sends are simply inserted in any insert slot, which means that you can send pre or post processing. Each send can be pre or post fader, so it can track the mix of the main UI or it can be used as a completely independent send. Every bus in the system can be returned to any other bus in the system, so you can use the busses as internal auxes, mix-minus feeds, PFL busses, etc. Anything you can think of, you can accomplish with the flexible routing engine in the v.5 Mixer. The v.5 Mixer provides an innovative send window that gives you a consolidated view of all the sends for the selected bus with a full sized fader for the send level, per-bus solos and channel mutes, and support for any width send bus (that’s right — you can send to a surround bus!).

Ultra-Low Latency

One of the primary advantages that dedicated DSP-based systems have traditionally had over native DAWs is their latency performance. Round-trip Latency is how long it takes for a signal sent into the DAW to come back out, and it is a primary consideration for musicians when monitoring their performances. With the ULN-8 and v.5, you get the best of both worlds — ultra-low latency native performance and even lower dedicated DSP latency performance when you want it!

“…Now, with the 2d upgrades and v.5 Console, with its super efficient, super low latency drivers and drastically reduced internal latency I can do software monitoring from my DAW at latencies that are imperceptible to even the pickiest of my clients.   And in the unlikely case that an even pickier customer than I have met so far turns up I am completely confident I can still satisfy his monitoring needs with the new zero-latency internal effects, because, in addition to the already excellent compressors and EQs MIO users have been enjoying for years, the new effects include reverbs and amp simulations that are  so spot-on that they hang with any of the dozens of high quality native effects in my arsenal…”

— Dennis Gunn
Independent Musician/Producer, Tokyo Japan
Read More…

With roundtrips through the computer to utilize native Plug-ins, the combination of the hardware and driver allows the use of extremely small buffers (32 samples) on modern computer hardware. Coupled with the best-in-industry safety buffers of the MIO Driver, you can achieve less than 5ms (4.53ms) Round-Trip latency at 32 samples @ 44.1k, and you can go below 3ms (2.6ms) Round-Trip latency at 32 samples @ 96k, again rivaling the performance of PCI-based solutions, yet with the convenience and portability of FireWire.

And if that performance is not sufficient for your monitoring needs, the ULN-8 allows you to monitor through +DSP Plug-ins with an incredible 1.5 ms of latency @ 44.1kHz and less that 0.7 ms of latency at 96k. This gives you dedicated processing at latencies that correspond to less than 2 ft of sound propagation through the air. As good or better than dedicated digital mixers!

Integrated Surround Monitor Controller/Switcher

An exciting new feature included with ULN-8 is the Monitor Controller with Digitally-Controlled analog gains. This is a consolidated, configurable routing engine that allows you to easily route and control the output gain of any set of sources to any set of outputs, from mono to 7.1 surround. The monitor controller lets you switch between inputs and busses with a single click. You can also select between outputs (like big and small monitors, or stereo and surround monitors, or monitors and cans), with a single click. The ULN-8’s front panel controls are linked to the Monitor controller allowing you to select sources and destinations from the tactile controls, and also to control the monitoring gain for the selected output path via the dedicated monitor control knobs.
v.5 Monitor Controller

The Monitor Controller is smart enough to automatically route sources to the proper output channels, even mapping between different sized sources and outputs (mono -> stereo, stereo -> 5.1, etc.). All output gains are applied across all the channels of the output path automatically. The Monitor Controller also supports both per-channel and per-path calibration, so you can calibrate your output path to standard monitoring levels (for example, the K-Standard).

“…The Monitor Controller completely negates the need for my existing ‘large knob’ monitor controller (and removes its inferior signal path from between my MIO and speakers)…”

— Brian Monroney
Guitarist/Musical Director for Tom Jones
Read More…

“…Another real innovation is how the Console links up with the Monitor Controller. It’s so easy to route any of my various mix outputs to the monitor selector, and configure all the available outputs: when I’m recording on location I have to switch frequently between sources and between speakers and headphones and now it happens seamlessly with one click, right in the software…”

— Lolly Lewis
Transparent Recordings
Read More…

Routing of Inputs to Computer

In the ULN-8, all inputs to the computer are routable within the box; this gives you an incredible amount of flexibility and power in how you can use your MIO. The combination of mixer strip direct outs and FireWire routing allow you to choose the inputs to your computer dynamically:

  • Record Pre or Post Processing… or both
  • Record full mixes or individual stems
  • Use the MIO as an outboard processing rack
  • Use the MIO to route signals between any set of CoreAudio applications
  • and much more…
“…The choice of using either or both pre and post direct outs on each channel is so utterly useful and practical, and raises the question “why has nobody thought of this up until now?” The sheer simplicity of integrating the superb DSP tools in v.5 into other DAWs makes them as convenient as native AUs, but you may find yourself relying less and less on your DAWs mixer, once you start understanding just what v.5 is actually capable of…” — Mark Cahill
Owner, Logic Users Group
Co – Administrator,
Read More…

Full Surround Support

Any bus in the v.5 Mixer is adjustable between Mono and 7.1 surround. The mixer dynamically adjusts with context-sensitive panners and allows you to adjust to the needs of your current project. You can even mix in different formats simultaneously. The mixer will even automatically adjust the width of inserted Plug-ins as you adjust the widths of the busses. Coupled with the integrated Surround Monitor Controller/Switcher, the is the most powerful integrated surround interface on the market. You won’t believe what you can do

Full and Flexible Metering

The v.5 Mixer supports user-selectable pre- or post- fader metering on all strips (including sends) as well as hardware metering for hardware I/O. Plug-ins have detailed metering where appropriate. All Metric Halo hardware has real, usable Front Panel meters. We don’t skimp on metering. Not that you would expect anything less from the creators of SpectraFoo!

User configuration of strip colors, size and position

Your gear is as personal as the music you make and record. You spend a huge amount of time looking at the mix surface of your system; it should reflect your preferences and tastes. So every strip in the v.5 Mixer can be adjusted in size and color to reflect your mood. You can also use this configurability to organize the mixer in a way that makes sense to you. Color and position can be used to segregate channels by type, source, and function — all in the way that makes the most sense to you. The mixer defaults to a nice, readable, neutral color and size, but you are free to make it as garish as you like.

Incredible Sound

The ULN-8 was designed as a no-compromise audio front end. With Archival grade converters, exceptional preamps, and the analog-domain monitor controller the ULN-8 builds upon the Mobile I/O’s deserved reputation in the industry as the best sounding interfaces around — and kicks it up a notch or ten. +DSP also enjoys a reputation for incredible sound. The v.5 Mixer provides sound and ergonomics that competitors can’t touch — all while providing direct access to +DSP Plug-ins, Character and highlighting the exceptional transparency of the ULN-8 converters and preamps.

“I’ve been using MIOs for several years now, because the hardware and software have provided not only the cleanest sound I could find but elegance in the execution and  simplicity in use.

MIO Console v.5 takes it to a whole ‘nother level.  If you can imagine a recording, mixing or processing setup, you can achieve it in minutes.  And on top of that, you don’t have to trade sound quality to get the convenience.  You get both, big time…” — Barry Diament
Legendary Recording and Mastering Engineer
Soundkeeper Recordings
Read More…

2d Plug-In Bundle

Every ULN-8 includes a full +DSP license — providing access to a wide variety of essential signal processing Plug-ins. All +DSP Plug-ins operate with zero additional latency, providing professional quality, best-in-industry latency performance for processing with native systems (meeting or beating the latency performance of dedicated hardware Digital Audio Workstations).

The +DSP license includes a variety of Plug-ins including Multi-band EQs, Compressor, Limiter, Distortion Processors, and many more. With the +DSP license, you also have access to insertable graphs which allow you to build your own “Secret Weapon” processors — wrapped up, phase compensated graphs of Plug-ins that may be re-inserted on demand.

“…Being able to use my own custom-built DSP environments, as an insert or send, anywhere in my signal chain, is beyond ridiculous.”

— John McCaig
Mastering Engineer
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“…In the studio, the new architecture connects my +DSP patches to any and all applications and hardware in new ways…”

— Dave Davis
Media Designer & Mastering Engineer
Sound Images
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Finally, the +DSP includes many bonus Plug-in Macros — insertable, pre-configured processors, including Guitar Amp Models, Guitar Processors, Parallel Compressors and Limiters, Mid/Side Mastering processors, Vintage-style reverbs and many more…

“There are numerous new features that I’m excited about… Did I mention HaloVerb? Or the amp simulations? I have now switched almost entirely to summing my DP 5 projects in the MIO’s DSP mixer (it just sounds so damn good, combined with the great MIO EQ and dynamics Plug-ins)…”

— Brian Monroney
Guitarist/Musical Director for Tom Jones
Read More…

Use the following table to see the differences between the plugins included with the 2d Card and the additional plugins and macros that you get with the +DSP bundle:


Feature +DSP License
Character (22 types) v
Multibus Mixer v
Surround Support v
Monitor Controller v
Transient Controller v
MIOStrip v
M/S Decoder v
Short Delay v
Dither v
HaloVerb v
MIO EQ 6 v
MIO EQ 12 v
MIO State Variable Filter v
MIO Comp v
MIO Limit v
Delays Family(15 plugins) v
MIO Simple Pitch Shifter v
Allpass filters (2 plugins) v
MIO Soft Clip Family (3 plugins) v
MIO Nonlinear Map Family (4 plugins) v
MIO Volume Control Family (16 plugins) v
MIO A/B Switch Family (16 plugins) v
MIO M/S Processor v
Static Matrix Family (5 plugins) v
Channel op Family (5 plugins) v
Oscillator Family (6 plugins) v
MIO Mod Delay v
Insertable Graphs (infinite possibilities) v
2d Amps +DSP License
Bass Head v
Bass Head Shape 1 v
Bass Head Shape 2 v
British Mil Spec v
British Mil Spec Bright Cab v
British Mil Spec Grind v
British Mil Spec Light Grind v
British Mil Spec Rhythm v
British Mil Spec+Vibrato+Trem v
MH Clean v
MH Clean Tweed v
MH Hi-Gain v
Small Dark v
Small Dark No Cab v
Small Tweed Crunch v
Small Tweed Touch O’ Dirt v
2d Effects +DSP License
Autoflanger v
Autoflanger 2 v
Autoflanger 3 v
Cool Mono Echo v
LoFi Mod Echo v
Mono Rotary v
Slap Delay v
Vibrato+Tremolo v
Stereo Rotary Speaker v
2d Reverbs +DSP License
Diffuse Prime v
Diffuse Room v
Early Diffuse Room (no tail) v
Hall 1 v
LongVerb v
Med Diffuse Room v
ModVerb v
Small Diffuse Room v
2d Mastering +DSP License
Parallel Compressor v
Parallel Limiter v
Mid-Side Compressor v
Mid-Side EQ v
Mid-Side Limit v
Stereo Parallel Limiter v
2d Pedals 2d Card +DSP
Nezumi v
Nezumi Less Gain v
Screamer v
Cabinets 2d Card +DSP
Closed 2×12 v
Closed 2×12 with Air v
4×12 Cab v

System-wide +DSP Licensing

MIO Console v.5 automatically extends your ULN-8’s +DSP license to all the boxes attached to your system (for boxes that are 2d Expanded) while the boxes are attached. What this means is that you can use any +DSP Plug-in or macro on any box in your system, as long as at least one +DSP licensed box is attached. If you need to store +DSP Plug-ins in persistent states or tend to split your boxes into multiple systems, you will need to license each box that needs to use the +DSP license independently — but every ULN-8 is already licensed from the factory!

“The best thing, for me, about MIO Console v.5 with my 2d Expanded ULN-2 is the superior sounding HaloVerb for my flute and EWI performance. Before v.5, I had to send input signal to Plogue Bidule for reverb processing, but of course that increased the latency. Now with v.5 I am latency free with my performance reverb!


The new v.5 Mixer window offers very flexible routing with ease of use. I can add send/return to +DSP very quickly, and the new Send window gives full feedback and control over dry/wet signal. This is like a dream come true…” — Hiroaki Honshuku
Musician, Flute & EWI
A-NO-NE Music, Boston
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Metric Halo’s Exclusive Character Signal Processing

Every channel in the v.5 Mixer, including Bus Masters, has our exclusive Character signal processing available. We took a hard look at the characteristics of the euphonic distortion found in “classic” analog devices and components (like tubes, fets, and transformers) and built a process to integrate that euphonic distortion directly in the hardware.

Character allows you to turn the pristine ultra-low distortion preamp inputs in the HW into classic “character” pres. By adding Character to your summing bus, the v.5 Mixer instantly acquires the characteristics of classic (and modern) analog summing busses.

The best part is that you can choose the Character that suits your Mic, Source or mix — because v.5 ships with more than 15 different types of Character — and one is sure to suit your needs.

It is hard to describe the effect of Character in words, but our beta testers have been moved to try. This is what they have to say:

“…The new Character analog hardware emulation Plug-in on each mixer strip is totally addictive. Pure audio crack!…”

— Brian Monroney
Guitarist/Musical Director for Tom Jones
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“…There was a moment when I was tracking some guitar, I switched on some Character Plug-ins on the input and I couldn’t believe what I was  hearing — it’s gorgeous… the Character Plug-ins are so cool they have made me stop using some of my outboard gear altogether; yes they are that good…”

— Rico Sergeant
Singer Songwriter
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“…The new console is absolutely amazing and Character is worth the price of admission alone. It’s not an upgrade, it’s a rebirth.”

— Marc Schonbrun
Guitarist – Author – Music Technology Educator
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“…Character in particular has brought new life to the already exemplary MH preamps by giving them the personalities of my favorite boutique and vintage pres.”

— Don Gunn
Recording/mixing engineer
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“…My favourite features? Well, the one that jumps out has to be the astonishing sonic choices available through the Character settings. Honestly, most other software companies would launch substantial marketing campaigns around this single feature, it would more than fulfill the needs of many companies to show as a major new product in itself  and cause software engineers to deservedly sit back and savour a job well done, and, most significantly, would most certainly come with  a very substantial price tag…”

— Mark Cahill
Owner, Logic Users Group
Co – Administrator,
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“…Character emulation adds a full microphone cabinet to features already contained in an easily transportable 1U package…”

— Christopher Jones
Live Audio Archivist
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“…In a mixing environment, I have found no better mixer than the new v.5 Console to take my DAW outputs to new levels of clarity and life. With the Character processing added to the extremely flexible routing and the new macro inserts, mixes have now moved way beyond the sonic possibilities of the standard DAWs output. The v.5 Mixer bus summing far exceeds that of any DAW available…”

— Michael Romanowski
Mastering and Recording Engineer
Michael Romanowski Mastering
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“…The Character emulations of preamp characteristics sounds great, and gives me the sound of my vintage studio gear when I am traveling to do location recordings…”

— Erlend Myrstad
Engineer / Producer
Atlantis Audio
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“…Best of all, Character options can subtly and magically color sounds, selectively adding the desirable qualities of tubes, transformers or transistors without their negative characteristics (noise, circuit design variables, part variance, etc.)…”

— Dave Davis
Media Designer & Mastering Engineer
Sound Images
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“…The plug-ins provide everything I need in the mastering room.  Character lets you add color as desired and for those jobs where only a pristine path will do, I’ll take v.5 over any other option on the market…” — Barry Diament
Legendary Recording and Mastering Engineer
Soundkeeper Recordings
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Many templates included to get you started quickly

It is said that a picture is worth 1,000 words. Well, a template is worth 10,000 words. MIO Console v.5 ships with a collection of pre-configured templates to get you started quickly. The templates also supply a great starting point to see how to approach a problem, and also to just see what is possible.

You can access these templates with a single click in MIO Console:
“…I am totally amazed by the new capabilities this brings, it’s so flexible it makes my  head spin just thinking about all the possibilities, but even with all this depth it’s so easy to just start working  with it, the templates are really fantastic — Metric Halo you have done it again; You have set the new standard — there is nothing that even comes close…”

— Rico Sergeant
Singer Songwriter
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Updated Record Panel

Originally designed to record the Soulive Winter 2002 tour for their live album release “Soulive” on Blue Note records, the Record Panel is an industrial strength, massively multichannel, ultra-reliable recording engine. Supporting multi-box, multichannel recording, the coupled with the Record Panel is the only computer-based system that can record up to 108 channels on a laptop.

The Record Panel is an Integrated Part of the ULN-8.

In constant use by thousands of engineers world-wide, the Record Panel is a time-tested, rock-solid recording tool for when you just have to get the take. The prime choice of many A-list FOH/Recording engineers for capturing once-in-a-lifetime live recordings on tour, the RP has proven to be a reliable tool for the capture of multitrack recordings in challenging conditions with no chance for a second take. The Record Panel has also found a home in the Classical recording world — again, where failing to get a take is not an option!

“…An added bonus is I can record my performance by just clicking on the rec button on the Mix Channel Strip, which is directly connected to my beloved Record Panel!…”

— Hiroaki Honshuku
Musician, Flute & EWI
A-NO-NE Music, Boston
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“…I now rely exclusively on my Metric Halo interfaces for all aspects of my recording and mixing needs. When I’m recording sound effects in surround on location, I have a beautifully transparent set of pre-amps and a superb multi-track recorder and with the new v.5 software and 2d Card upgrade, I can produce stunning-sounding mixes wherever my work takes me…”

— John Leonard
Theatre Sound & Show Control
Sound & Show Control
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The Record Panel supports recording at all sample rates and supports many different record-file formats (including SD2, AIFF, Wave, Broadcast Wave, and CAF), including basic recording metadata. The RP even supports recording at 16-bit for reduced disk space requirements (for recordings that don’t require ultimate fidelity).

“I never go on tour without my Metric Halo MIO 2882+DSP.  It has been my secret weapon when it comes to recording (using the Record Panel), playback and sound system analysis for the better part of 8 years…”

— Philip J Harvey
PilotLight Audio Inc.
FOH The White Stripes, The Raconteurs
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“…In combination with my MIO, the v.5 Console’s Record Panel is my favorite way to capture audio.

The Mixer, the Monitor Controller, the DSP, the Record Panel, oh my.  The folks at Metric Halo have achievements they can be quite proud of…” — Barry Diament
Legendary Recording and Mastering Engineer
Soundkeeper Recordings
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The v.5 Console enhances the rock-solid performance of the Record Panel with new work-flow features, including configuration of active tracks, ordering of tracks, record-enables directly from the mixer control surface, and enhancements to playback performance.

With the introduction of the ULN-8, the Record Panel has been further enhanced to support seamless breaks during recording, automatically enforced file-size limits for enhanced compatibility with a variety of DAWs and support for Timestamping of BWAV files with TOD or timestamps derived from SMPTE LTC. SMPTE LTC can be decoded from any input (including the ULN-8’s dedicated SMPTE input).

Sophisticated State Management

MIO Console automatically tracks all the system configuration documents that you create and use, so you can switch between configurations with a single click. This is excellent for when you have your MIO connected to your computer, but what if you want to use your MIO without your computer say as a standalone converter, signal processor or mixer?

All hardware has support for setting a Boot State — the configuration the hardware will use when the unit boots up. As of&