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Echo's original Indigo was perfect for those who wanted to add a high-quality audio output to their laptop without taking up more space. The new IO version adds a stereo input and multi-client drivers, increasing its appeal even more.
Echo's Indigo, an extremely compact PCMCIA peripheral that offered 24-bit/96kHz audio support via a pair of 3.5mm headphone sockets. Once the card had been inserted into its Type II Cardbus slot, the only part that remained visible was a grey plastic pod just two inches high by one inch wide, and half an inch thick, with 3.5mm sockets at either end, and a tiny thumb-wheel output level control and blue LED activity indicator on the top. As footprints go, the Indigo is about as small as most people's big toes, and has proved to be extremely popular with musicians who want an easy but high-quality way to monitor audio on their laptops.
Given this success, it's not surprising that Echo have now catered for those of us who want to record on our laptops as well, and for those who want more versatile output options. The Indigo IO under review here has one stereo line input and one stereo headphone/line output instead of the twin headphone outputs of the original Indigo, with an identical thumb-wheel output level control, while the Indigo DJ provides two discrete stereo outputs — outputs 1/2 for phone/line use controlled by the thumb-wheel, and 3/4 at line level unaffected by the thumb-wheel. Both products also include a six-foot-long audio connection cable, which wasn't shipped with the original Indigo, with a stereo 3.5mm jack at one end and twin RCA/phono plugs plus quarter-inch jack adaptors at the other.
- A-D & D-A converters: 128x oversampling.
- Line input: unbalanced 3.5mm jack at -10dBV sensitivity, with 10kΩ impedance.
- Line output: unbalanced 3.5mm jack at -10dBV nominal level and +6.3dBu maximum output level.
- Interface: Cardbus buss master.
- Sample rates: 32, 44.1, 48, 88.2 and 96 kHz.
- Driver formats: WDM-MME, GSIF, ASIO 2.0.
- Frequency response: 10Hz to 20kHz, ±0.5dB.
- THD+Noise: <0.0014 percent A-weighted, using 1kHz sine wave at -3dBFS.
- Dynamic range: >109dBA.
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