MOTU regains my trust.
As a long-time MOTU interface user, I was hesitant about purchasing this. My last MOTU interface, an 828mkII, had numerous issues after I updated my operating system to snow leopard. After the update, it just wouldn't work. It took MOTU over a year to get the new hardware drivers working correctly.
The new 828x thunderbolt works perfectly, with a few snags. The included CD was scratched from the factory, so I had to visit the MOTU site to download the latest installer. I recommend doing this anyway, as the version supplied in my box was outdated to begin with.
After installing the MOTU Cuemix software, I plugged the unit in and turned it on. It works perfectly. No pops or clicks when connected to my three year old MacBook Pro.
There is a ton of connectivity on this unit... I hooked it up to my Dangerous Audio Dbox, Lavry Converters, and Antelope audio clock with no issues.
I daisy-chained a thunderbolt hard drive as well, with no issues.
The built in converters and sound quality are O.K., but not in the same league as the RME interfaces. Much better than the M-Audio and Presonus interfaces tho.
The built in mic pres are O.K. at best. I'd recommend that those who purchase this look into a good preamp for recording microphones, like an API 512c or A Designs Pacifica.
The DSP effects are quite good. Using the DSP with the 828x as a stand-alone mixer worked great for jam sessions. Build quality is also very good.
I give the 828x 4 stars. The build quality, DSP, connectivity, stand alone option, and CueMix make this unit a bargain. As your needs grow, this interface will easily accommodate pro-level converters, clocks, etc.