Used UR824 installation. Afraid it won't go well.

Hi I have a used UR824 coming and I’m afraid it won’t go well. The manual and getting started is understandably for a brand new activation. I am trying to prepare the computer as problem free as possible for my unit.

I’m afraid it won’t go well because I am not getting any discs nor the license card with the unit. The seller says he doesnt have them. I didn’t think this was a big deal when I bought it coming from a RME Babyface but now that I look at the manual it looks like it is. It looks like that license card will be very important. I am coming from a RME land where I just downloaded the latest stuff and it was good to go. No licenses, no eLicenser. I wanted more inputs, better preamps and more ADAT and better Cubase intergration so I sold my Babyface and bought the UR824. I use a full pro version of Cubase 6.5.5 with Windows 10 64 bit.

So do I just download the latest Tools and latest Firmware from the Steinberg site and I’m good to go? Or will I run into problems? Should I set up the Tools first and then plug the unit in or should I install the firmware to the hardware unit. Is there a way to check the firmware first to see if it already has the latest Firmware?

How easy will it be to integrate with Cubase? Does the UR824 automatically integrate with Cubase once it’s plugged in? Or will it hang up when I try to open Cubase because of the lack of license card?

Are the reverb and the channel strip in the DSP of the unit? Will I still be able to use them in Cubase without a license card as long as I dont try to use them as external VST3 effects? Will they just BE on the channels for use inside Cubase?

Thanks, please help calm my fears and help my installation go as smoothly and as least frustrating as possible.


The missing install discs are not a problem, because you can download everything you need and they are probably outdated anyway.

Install the tools and driver before connecting the unit.
Once it’s on and running you can check the firmware version in the dspmix app.

The license is for vst version of the bundled dsp effects. They get installed with the tools and can be used as any other vst plugin. I guess you would be able to use the interface and the onboard dsp effects without the license. There is no license needed for the interface itself.

But I would contact the seller and/or support and try to get the license as well.

But I can use the reverb and channel strip within Cubase and the UR824 without the licenses right? Its just if I want to use them as VST3 plugs it’s a problem? Cubase isn’t going to get hung up looking for these licenses, is it?

And now I get it in the mail this morning and the rack ears are poking outside the side of the box. Especially the left one. What an idiot, what a headache. Oh Ebay.

I already asked the seller for the license card on the weekend and he says he doesnt have them. Or the discs. But I dont care about the discs since the software on them is outdated like you say and I have a full version of Cubase anyways.

I hope it just works tonight so I dont have to go through the headache of returning it.

Its just if I want to use them as VST3 plugs it’s a problem?


Cubase isn’t going to get hung up looking for these licenses, is it?

Don’t know. But if it is a problem, extract the tools and install just the driver and applications.
It’s the Basic FX Suite you need the license for.

No, you can’t use neither vst2 or vst3 within cubase.
You can only use the fx within the dspmixer of the interface, If you don’t have the licences

But if Im using Cubase then those effects are on the channel as they come in right? Because with Cubase the dspmixer is not seperate right? Or you are saying I cant use them on finished tracks or projects. Only when I am tracking? But as long as they are on the track when tracking that they will stay there?

Well it definitely went smoothly and quickly for install.

Already had Cubase and Elicenser so I’m sure that helped. Still bummed out without the license card but whatever, I got a pretty good deal on it.

Now just to test all the hardware functions and ins outs because the guy packed it like an idiot.

But its probably a keeper. Front inputs work alright as do the headphone jacks.

Very nice integration with Cubase though. Very pleased so far.

You can access and set up the FX directly on the input channels of the Cubase MixConsole. How (or whether) they get saved is a function of how you set them up. You have just three options.

  1. You can bypass the fx completely.

  2. You can hear your signal in the phones with fx, but record only the dry signal. If you choose this, the fx you hear when you are tracking will not be recorded, only the clean signal. This is nice when recording a vocalist. You can quickly give them some zero latency reverb in their phones mix to sweeten the sound and let them sing better, and not have to commit to a reverb type and amount decision until later as you mix.

  3. You can hear the fx in the phones AND record the signal as you hear it, including the fx.

So, option 3 is the only way you will hear the fx from the unit after you have finished tracking, and you can no longer hear the clean signal.

The MR816 was the first Steinberg interface to offer the dsp chip. The drivers were written to allow that unit to be used as external hardware fx on a channel insert. That is probably why the software version of the plugins was never offered to owners of the MR816. In the UR units, this functionality was not implemented. Instead, owners were given the software version of the fx to be able to use them after the fact.

As discussed in another post, the fx are not documented in the UR manuals. There is a complete description of all the settings and parameters in the MR816 csx manual, however.