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Author Topic: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?  (Read 880 times)

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Offline IronFilm

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Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« on: July 07, 2017, 02:46:29 AM »
Wondering about what low cost audio interface to get?
The top uses for it would be for ADR / voice overs / podcasts.
If I can get a hackintosh to work, I'd probably play around with Boom Recorder Lite as well with it (with perhaps looking to in the future, upgrade to a full on cart system based on this): http://www.vosgames.nl/products/BoomRecorder/

Important points for me, in order of priority (but I could potentially be flexible on these):
1) At least 2x XLR inputs
2) 96kHz & 24bits
3) good pre amps
4) good limiters (which doesn't seem to be that common? Though a few like the Roland Rubix24 has them)

These are the few that I've started out considering (all prices in USD, pricing sourced from B&H Photo, seems $150 is a very common price point here):

Zoom U-24 ($150)
Steinberg UR22mkII ($150)
PreSonus AudioBox 96 ($100)
Tascam US-2x2 ($150)
Behringer U-PHORIA UMC404HD (has **four** inputs, and only $100!)
Roland Rubix24 ($200, a new release! Not shipping just yet, so can't find out much info about it. Roland Rubix44 at $300 is becoming just too pricey for my tastes however!)
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 2nd Gen ($150. What is the difference between 1st and 2nd generation? Seems like lower latency and ability to handle hotter inputs is two of the key points, but would buying a sharply priced 1st Gen one be a good idea?)

And one more, just because it is just so crazy cheap:

Behringer U-PHORIA UM2 2x2 (only one XLR input, and the other is 1/4", plus is just 48KHz, but is an insanely low price of $29.99!! And is there a big difference between this and the Behringer U-PHORIA UMC22 2x2 for ten bucks more?? Seems like "MIDAS designed" pre amps is the biggest extra selling feature here)

From my research, it appears Focusrite is in general the popular "default" recommendation.

But I often like to go against the grain ;-)

Steinberg UR22MKII seemed to then be my preferred choice, because I get the feeling from reading reviews it might have a small edge in having better pre amps, but also it has the nifty feature of being able to run from a USB power pack which gives it some extreme portability! (you can hook it up then with a iPad)

Tempted to wait for the reviews of the new Roland Rubix24 to come out, plus tempted still by the Behringer U-PHORIA UMC404HD (because it has four inputs, and is only $100).

Or maybe I should just save over a hundred bucks, and get myself the Behringer U-PHORIA UM2 2x2 or Behringer U-PHORIA UMC22 2x2, to get it immediately and not bother putting so much time/research/thought into all this? :-P ha!

Offline Ronmac

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2017, 07:16:50 AM »
I can recommend either the Steinberg or the Focusrite and highly recommend against the Behringer.

If you can stretch your budget a bit, and live with a single mic pre and DI, the Audient (best preamp of the lot) linked below is highly recommended.

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/ID4

If you can, audition your top choices to see if they fit your needs and "feel" right. Pay particular attention to the quality and output level of the headphone amp. That is one area that is usually weak on most budget interfaces.

Offline rippleish20

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2017, 09:46:34 AM »
I have a Behringer UMC202HD, Zoom U-44 and Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 (I assume Gen One). The Zoom has S/PDIF in which has proven useful for me but otherwise I like the Focusrite the best. If its useful, I will sell my Focusrite for $120 shipped as I don't use it at this point.
MK22's / MK41's / MK41v's / MK4v's / MK4's / AKG C480Bs+ck61, ck63 / Telefunken FET M60 Cards and Hypers / AT853s
KCY 250/5 and Nbob KCY (x2) > naiant PFA or IPA or Nbox  / SP-SPSB-11 Battery Box
Zoom F8 / Sony M-10 / Mixpre-6 / Tascam DR-100mkIII

Offline IronFilm

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2017, 03:37:37 AM »
What do you think of your Behringer UMC202HD vs the other two?

Offline nak700s

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2017, 07:58:19 AM »
Normal: Nakamichi CM-700's >> SD 744T (or) Sony PCM-M10
Stealth: CA-14c >> CA 9200 >> Edirol R-09HR
Ultra stealth: AudioReality >> AudioReality battery box >> Edirol R-09HR
Simple & Sweet!

Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2017, 09:49:07 AM »
I have had the original focusrite 2i2 for a few years.  It has a nice, clean sound.  The dials light if you are going into clipping.  I think its a terrific unit. 

Th

Offline Lynx Rufus

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2017, 12:33:35 PM »
The Roland Rubix24 and an iPad with substantial memory sound like they'd make a portable and flexible setup.
I may have to try that sometime this Summer.          :hmmm:

There's another contender:
Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6

« Last Edit: July 09, 2017, 12:40:08 PM by 108 Ohms »
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Offline rippleish20

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2017, 01:22:57 PM »
What do you think of your Behringer UMC202HD vs the other two?

I prefer the focusrite, it sounds the best to me. The Zoom is ok but somewhat overwhelming except for the S/PDIF port, but I use it to transfer DAT to computer and it actually gets the most use. I would have to admit that I havent used the Focusrite or the Behringer a lot either way. I originally bought the focusrite to use as an A/D converted for streaming (via a laptop). Behringer had a special where the Behringer was $50 shipped so I bought that to try as its much smaller the Focusrite. I stayed with the focusrite in the end, however, as I thought it sounded better. But carrying a laptop to shows and having to power it grew old quickly and I just use an ipad even though the stream quality is lower (with a sonicport a/d)
« Last Edit: July 09, 2017, 01:24:54 PM by rippleish20 »
MK22's / MK41's / MK41v's / MK4v's / MK4's / AKG C480Bs+ck61, ck63 / Telefunken FET M60 Cards and Hypers / AT853s
KCY 250/5 and Nbob KCY (x2) > naiant PFA or IPA or Nbox  / SP-SPSB-11 Battery Box
Zoom F8 / Sony M-10 / Mixpre-6 / Tascam DR-100mkIII

Offline 2manyrocks

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2017, 04:24:29 PM »
Just listening to the audio on many YouTube videos, it seems to me that the main problem is not really the mics or audio interface, but that audio in a box sound from recording in a room with zero acoustic treatment.  Even a heavy blanket tossed over some support is better than no treatment. 

2i2 on sale for $104.99 https://www.adorama.com/frst2i22g.html?sdtid=10313136&emailprice=t&utm_medium=Affiliate&utm_source=rflaid62905
« Last Edit: July 09, 2017, 04:58:39 PM by 2manyrocks »

Offline Nick's Picks

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Re: Low cost USB interfaces to use with Audacity/Audition?
« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2017, 08:07:51 AM »
M-Audio stuff is very decent as well.
LMA recordings and what-not


Live music: hauling around a Marshall stack whose output will get squeezed through a single SM57, then mangled by a Guinness-soaked mixer and shoved through suspicious-smelling power amps into a pair of grungy cabinets whose best days were before they left the factory, all of which are under the control of an engineer who would much rather be at home watching television.

 

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