Audio interface suggestions?

Want to talk about music hardware or software that doesn't include Reason?
dezma
Posts: 162
Joined: 02 Jun 2015

Post 04 Nov 2019

Hi,

I'm looking for a new audio interface. I mostly work with synths with very occasional recording. 2x 48v inputs are enough, 4 is plenty.

I like the layout and connectivity of my current audio interface, the fast track C600 but the hardware is getting my system to crash more and more so no more M-audio crap for me with their retarded let's end driver support after a few years policy. I expect this will have something to do with avid selling m-audio, yet it's still an extremely retarded move from inmusic to have such a limited support period for their "inherited" products for windows users.

A dedicated volume and headphone volume knob and rock solid low latency windows 10 asio drivers are a must, midi in/out is welcome but can be solved with a cheap midi to usb cable.
I work with headphones a lot so, I'd like to have a decent headphone output level, without preamp. While I liked the connectivity and dedicated buttons on the C600, I didn't like the cheap plastic look and feel, so something more solid would definately be a plus.

I have 1 pair of speakers (KRK)

Looking for something around a 250€ budget, can be stretched in the case of substantial quality differences.. Not sure if premium brands like Apogee and RME make that much of a difference as far as audio playback and low latency goes?

Studio one is my main DAW since a few months now

Things I've been looking at:

zoom UAC2
focusrite scarlett
Audient iD14 (no midi)
Komplete audio 6 mkII
Presonus interfaces

Please share your experiences.

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diminished
Posts: 1487
Joined: 15 Dec 2018

Post 04 Nov 2019

Behringer UMC202HD, UMC204HD, UMC404HD.
All are way below your budget!
:reason: Most recent track: The Test (feat. MrFigg) || Others: on my YouTube channel •ᴗ•

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miyaru
Posts: 41
Joined: 28 Oct 2019
Location: Zaanstad, The Netherlands

Post 04 Nov 2019

I'd go Focusrite or Presonus, whereby the last is a bit more cleanish/sterile as the Focusrite. I personally would skip Behringer, but he, that's my two cents........
Greetings from Miyaru.
Prodaw i7-7700, 16Gb Ram, Focusrite Saffire Pro40, Reason Suite 11, Live Suit 10, Push2, Presonus Eris E8, Lexicon MPX1,
Korg N1, Korg R3, NI Massive, Rob Papen's Predator 2, Sonarworks Reference 4 and Scaler.

prophecy
Posts: 49
Joined: 18 Oct 2018
Location: Liverpool

Post 04 Nov 2019

diminished wrote:
04 Nov 2019
Behringer UMC202HD, UMC204HD, UMC404HD.
All are way below your budget!
I have the 204 and the 404, I like them both. I got them both second hand on ebay and they cost way less than your budget. In fact both of them combined were still in your budget.
They have dedicated headphones outs, knobs and the stuff you were looking for.
The only issue I've ever had is a little bit of clipping on the 204 occasionally.
Reason 10 Lite | Surface Pro 3 i5 | Akai MPK Mini II | Yamaha Clavinova CVP5 | Fingers | Ears |

xboix
Posts: 97
Joined: 22 Oct 2019

Post 04 Nov 2019

I'm never having another Behringer interface. I've had too many driver oddities.

Focusrite is the baby for me. Rock solid Win10 drivers and a solid build quality.

dezma
Posts: 162
Joined: 02 Jun 2015

Post 04 Nov 2019

Thanks for the suggestions. NI looks cooler but Focusrite seems the best choice for now also with the gen3 2019 update. I don't seem to find any negative review or user experience. It's probably a thing from the past but I still associate Behringer with cheap Chinese copies of the real stuff.

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Boombastix
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Location: Bay Area, CA

Post 08 Nov 2019

The Presonus can send out CV if you need it in the future, also has loop-back, and some nice free software too.
10% off at Waves with link: https://www.waves.com/r/6gh2b0
Disclaimer - I get 10% as well.

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guitfnky
Posts: 1449
Joined: 19 Jan 2015

Post 08 Nov 2019

I can’t speak for their interfaces specifically, but Behringer makes excellent gear. not “for the money”. they just make excellent gear. if you’re worried about the quality, don’t be.

sure, you can pay a lot more for a top brand name that does the same thing, but the question must be asked...why?

like anything, if you educate yourself and read lots of reviews, you’ll get a good idea how well any interface will work for you.

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Faastwalker
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Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 09 Nov 2019

I've been very happy with the Focusrite Scarlett interfaces I've owned. Well priced for all interfaces in the range.

reggie1979
Posts: 1079
Joined: 11 Apr 2019

Post 10 Nov 2019

Budget, smudgent. Get some extra bucks and find a way to an RME babyface pro. Scary money, FANTASTIC unit. Had mine for years now. Why worry about your soundcard? Get those squeegee bucks going and do it!

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BananaSkins
Posts: 256
Joined: 29 Sep 2017

Post 10 Nov 2019

reggie1979 wrote:
10 Nov 2019
Budget, smudgent. Get some extra bucks and find a way to an RME babyface pro. Scary money, FANTASTIC unit. Had mine for years now. Why worry about your soundcard? Get those squeegee bucks going and do it!

Have to agree;

The RME BabyFace Pro is absolutely a great addition to my studio, I can USB hot plug it into any of my studio PC's, (it can also be used as stand-alone)

Class-compliant mode allows the Babyface Pro to be used with an iPad running iOS 5 or later (or an iPhone running at least iOS 7) via Apple’s Lightning to USB Camera Adaptor

The bundled software of TotalMix FX, provides access to the FPGA-powered DSP mixer.

TotalMix takes a bit of learning but this software application provides endless possibilities in regards to saving custom template settings for all sort of scenarios - for instance I can open up any TotalMix template to suit any of my Reason or Cubase templates. (Real time saver - load Reason template - load TotalMix template say for vocals press record and bang the recording is down, great for spur of the moment ideas!)

Also I've created TotalMix templates to suit my recording inputs like one for each of my guitars, one for each of my studio mics one for piano / keyboards different singers etc etc...

Also don't forget RME 'DIGICheck' software , the incredible utility to test, measurement and analysis of the digital audio data stream.

Worth every dime... :thumbs_up:

ps I do not work for RME :puf_bigsmile:

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guitfnky
Posts: 1449
Joined: 19 Jan 2015

Post 10 Nov 2019

all those RME features sound great, but ultimately they’re completely unnecessary. probably worth the investment for “power-users”, but for the majority of home producers, just add unneeded expense.

xboix
Posts: 97
Joined: 22 Oct 2019

Post 10 Nov 2019

I can't imagine ever paying that kind of money for an audio interface but I might be a bit put off by:
BananaSkins wrote:
10 Nov 2019
TotalMix takes a bit of learning but...

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kuhliloach
Posts: 649
Joined: 09 Dec 2015

Post 10 Nov 2019

Loving the Behringer UMC404HD. Preamps sound as good as any basic interface I've used. From what I can tell Behringer is leading the entry-level interface market right now and spending more on another company's entry-level interface just makes no sense.

EdGrip
Posts: 1584
Joined: 03 Jun 2016

Post 10 Nov 2019

I'm still using my Steinberg UR22 MK1, and its drivers are rock solid and pretty low latency. At the time I was buying, Focusrite had a reputation for having higher latency and not being as stable, but it sounds like that's improved now. I've supplemented the UR22 with a little headphone amp that it doesn't really need. I seem to remember reading that the Audient interfaces have good headphone amps - have a Google.

If it broke and I had to replace it, I might be tempted by a used RME interface for the mad low latency.
It turns out I almost never plug a microphone into the interface - but I DO wish it had some additional outputs so that I could reamp sounds via my guitar amp and pedalboard. If you have any pedals etc, put that feature on your list. Don't worry about high 192kHz sample-rates; you will never ever use them. 44.1kHz done well is better.

EdGrip
Posts: 1584
Joined: 03 Jun 2016

Post 10 Nov 2019

The Motu M4, just released, might be worth keeping an eye on...

reggie1979
Posts: 1079
Joined: 11 Apr 2019

Post 11 Nov 2019

Again, it's not about paying "too much" for an audio interface, it's about do you want to worry about it, or make music?

I've had my RME for YEARS! It's just there, doing what I want it to, with lower latency, isn't that worth something?

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aeox
Posts: 2318
Joined: 23 Feb 2017

Post 11 Nov 2019

kuhliloach wrote:
10 Nov 2019
Loving the Behringer UMC404HD. Preamps sound as good as any basic interface I've used. From what I can tell Behringer is leading the entry-level interface market right now and spending more on another company's entry-level interface just makes no sense.
I've had mine for 3 years with no issues
Random songs/ideas go here:
https://soundcloud.com/ae-ox/polar/s-Ocxtj

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ShelLuser
Posts: 207
Joined: 25 Aug 2019

Post 12 Nov 2019

I know the thread is old(er), but oh well...
dezma wrote:
04 Nov 2019
Komplete audio 6 mkII

Please share your experiences.
I recently picked one up, also because I've had very good experiences with their other products (Maschine also has a build-in audio device). Well.. the sound card itself is plain out solid and very easy to use. I've had some very solid results messing with an electric guitar (friend of mine), stereo mic setup (2 mics) and to top things off the output from my Casio keyboard just for fun & giggles. Like I said: solid, and easy to use & control too. Double headphone output also makes it easy to coop together and having the main volume on top is also easy.

However.. for some reason it only works fine with Asio4All, the default N.I. drivers (and the firmware updater) all refuse to recognize the device. Tried with USB 2, 3, powered hub, nothing. And as mentioned: Asio4All (which I'm normally using anyway) has no issues at all.

I'm very happy with my setup so far, but of course it's bizarre that the official ASIO driver doesn't work, especially if you take into consideration that my Maschine had no issues at all.
--- :reason:
Using the 'Power' Trio: Live 10 Suite (+ Push & Max 8 ), Reason 10 and Maschine Mk3 (+ the ultimate Komplete 12).
Blog: SynthFan (under heavy construction!)

dezma
Posts: 162
Joined: 02 Jun 2015

Post 12 Nov 2019

ShelLuser wrote:
12 Nov 2019
I know the thread is old(er), but oh well...
1 week is not THAT old :D

I like the idea of 2 headphones, and I've used it in the past for the (not so professional) singing and monitoring in the same room setup.

I'm a bit torn between the scarlett focusrite 8i6 and the NI komplete audio 6.

Focusrite for
-rock solid drivers
-seems to be a bit better preamps & built quality in general

NI for
-More attractive software package
-Bus powered (instead of focusrite 8i6)
-Better looking

The asio driver thing is worrying though, please let me know if you get a response on the NI forum!

The babyface doesn't seem to offer a lot of extra's in my case (very occasional recording)

zoidkirb
Posts: 185
Joined: 18 Nov 2018

Post 12 Nov 2019

dezma wrote:
12 Nov 2019
ShelLuser wrote:
12 Nov 2019
I know the thread is old(er), but oh well...
1 week is not THAT old :D

I like the idea of 2 headphones, and I've used it in the past for the (not so professional) singing and monitoring in the same room setup.

I'm a bit torn between the scarlett focusrite 8i6 and the NI komplete audio 6.

Focusrite for
-rock solid drivers
-seems to be a bit better preamps & built quality in general

NI for
-More attractive software package
-Bus powered (instead of focusrite 8i6)
-Better looking

The asio driver thing is worrying though, please let me know if you get a response on the NI forum!

The babyface doesn't seem to offer a lot of extra's in my case (very occasional recording)
I own a focusrite 2i4, gen 1. It's been fairly solid for a number of years...bought it 5+ years ago when they were still current. The drivers were pretty iffy for a long time but to focusrites credit they eventually got them right, even for my older model. Focusrite do their own ongoing software bundle that I think rivals the komplete deal, maybe surpasses it with new plugins offered every few months.
Honestly I've always lusted after the babyface pro. Not so much for the total mix stuff but for the rock solid drivers and low latency. Really that's the core element I'm after. Still, that $1000aud price tag has always discouraged me from ditching the perfectly adequate 2i4. As another poster mentioned, perhaps if it dies and I see a great deal on the babyface...
Last edited by zoidkirb on 15 Nov 2019, edited 1 time in total.

shredmiyagi
Posts: 31
Joined: 29 Nov 2015

Post 15 Nov 2019

I personally did a song and dance trying a lot of (consumer-level) interfaces until I finally just bought a used UA Apollo Twin Solo (cheapest one, the first model) for about $350.

UAD includes 14 free legacy plug-ins - pretty good stuff actually, better than lot of my Reason & Logic plugins. The RealVerb, Marshall Plexi, LA2A and Pultec EQ see a lot of use. I don't have an interest in getting into the UAD plugins beyond these, they are quite expensive (although they are very good, I'm just more of a hardware guy).

I honestly think it's worth just trying to shell out for a used older models, used. HUGE upgrade over Presonus, Focusrite, low-end Audient, etc. I send session guitar tracks to some clients, primarily just mic a vintage 1x12 combo with a M160 or SM57. Exact same mics and gear with Apogee Duet, had a UR44 for a while, and the Focusrite Scarlett few years back. I'm no expert on specs or AD/DA gear but without verbalizing too much, the UAD just sounds plain better than anything I've had before. Most the noticeable part for me is the plug-ins really beef up your sound for live monitoring purposes, and they sound good post-processing, but even without it. But beyond it, I can't explain but I just get better results.

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