So I've been using the Apogee Ensemble Firewire for some time now on my desktop setup and it does everything I need. I switched about a year ago from a Mac Pro tower (2009ish) to a Mac Mini (2013 I think) and had to use a thunderbolt hub to get Firewire, but the Apogee has continued to serve me faithfully. However, with Sierra (OS X 10.12) I've started to have some problems and I just learned that Apogee stopped supporting the card after Yosemite (10.10). So my questions:

(1) Is anyone else using this card, and are you having any OS X related problems? Are there any known issues with compatibility (other than the lack of official support)?

(2) If I have to get a new card, what do you all recommend in the $300-1000 range? I can't afford a new Apogee Ensemble (nor do I want to buy anything else from them after this), but I want to keep at least the features listed below as a minimum. I've poked around looking at units from Presonus (Studio 192), MOTU (828x), and Focuslite (18i20). There are much nicer ones from RME that are out of my budget.

Thoughts on any of these cards, or other suggestions? If I do go with new hardware I want to avoid FireWire and stick to USB or possibly Thunderbolt. Also, all the ones I've seen have 8 Mic Pres but I don't need more than 2.


Min requirements: 4x2 analog in
1x1 TosLink In/Out
5x2 analog Out (TSR or XLR)