Usb Audio Interface For 200 - 400€ ?


I’m looking for a new usb audio interface. Most of the time its just used to get a midi port, but sometimes I will record some stuff (not an orchestra). ^_^
Budget is 200-400€. Don’t know if I must pay such price to get a quality one.

I got an Edirol UA-101 for £250 and I fucking love it. I suspect they usually cost a little more; I got mine in a sale.

I’m fairly sure you can get a M-Audio Fast Track Pro for that price in E-Bay. I’m personally going save up so I can spend a bit extra and get a MOTU Ultra-lite MK3 Hybrid, which runs about $550

No Need Egay. Fast Track Pro costs 155€ new. I dont want M-Audio since it is commonly considered as crap by default. Your recommended devices are a bit overloaded. I dont need 10 or more channels. I may need a maximum of 6, 4 or 2 channels will do it too.

Seriously? I’ve heard only good stuff about them… but then I’ve never tried one. Behringer seems to be the brand most often touted as “crap by default” from what I’ve heard.

“but then I’ve never tried one” is the key maxim. It’s not hard to try stuff out; don’t go by what you’ve heard “is commonly considered as crap by default”.

Anyway, it won’t do you much good to generalise so sweepingly - a lot of M-Audio stuff is fairly good quality and they’re good at offering support and answering queries on the forum. I’ve used the Fast Track Pro and I found it to be a wee bit crap, sure, but it fits the price point perfectly when you consider it in the context of its peers. Like with any other audio interface, there are caveats about operating under USB bus power, true channel-count (minus digital channels, which relatively few people have a practical use for), and other stuff.

Byte - I was of a similar mind, intending to go for the MOTU, but I found a load of really damning discussions on various forums. Like I say, this isn’t a good enough basis for a personal judgement, but the frustration and stress people seemed to be having with incomprehensible hardware/OS issues on the MKIII made me think that for 400-odd quid, I don’t need that kind of stress. It has some fancy features, and the standalone mixer capability is cool, but the ADCs are reportedly of mediocre quality and if you were desperate for the supposed quality that a MOTU should give you, you’d be better of saving for a Traveller MKIII. They ARE very good, which I can say having used it and earlier models extensively, and have rock-solid drivers.

Anyway, my Edirol falls neatly between the UltraLite (or, at least, a fully-functioning UltraLite) and the Fast Track Pro, because I needed moderately good quality with the option of being able to go portable - and I was lucky to get a £100 discount. But I’m not kidding myself: if I wanted really high ‘quality’, if I had £1000’s worth of UA preamp and if I was using a £3000 Neumann, then I’d go and get an RME Fireface or something equally capable of doing justice to such high quality input. Short of that, I don’t see the point in quibbling over apocryphal, relative benefits spread out arbitrarily across a +/- £300 differential of non-pro kit which mostly contains the exact same chips, DACs, ADCs and Neutriks but trade on the reputation of a brand name…

Argh. It’ll get you stressed if you let it, but if you take a pragmatic path through the signal/noise jungle of the internet, and take a trip to a music shop with your laptop to try EVERYTHING - even the stuff you can’t afford, you’ll end up with the best for your money. And even if it’s not the ‘best’, but it’s what you’re happy with…no probs.

Every time I see someone complaining about ADCs, I think of a $500 network cable.

Well I don’t complain about the ADCs on my TechnoSound Turbo, but I bet you would ;) Best damn sampling device in its field, though, as long as you keep it away from sources of interference, large bodies of water, cats, etc.

Anyway, my point is that on one hand, that shouldn’t matter if the price is right and the expectations are pragmatic; on the other hand, paying a premium for quality that isn’t there seems a shame.

$500 network cable?

How about some 12 foot speaker wires for over $7.000? Or even a set of silver coated 99.9999% oxygen free copper reference cables for $20.000?

Btw, they also mention a less than a buck coat hanger as a good alternative.

I have cakewalk UA-25 EX and i am very satisfied with it.
(made by roland)

It costs around 210 euro.

I had doubts between the M-audio fast track and this, but finally i got cakewalk´s
Drivers are pretty good (windows 7 x64)

  • Klez

Is there a power supply/cable included? Or you know how much power it needs? I only have a 80W PSU fpr supplying my PC. Fully loading it already takes 60-65W.

No, it does not have that option. Data and power travel by the USB cable. That´s the reason i got it, i got rid of my old mixer and the power and audio cables.

How much power it needs… according to the specifications it draws 480 ma

This is 40W? Too much. <_<

How did you calcuate that?

480mA = o.28A (let’s call it 0.5A)

P = VA = 5 x 0.5 = 2.5W

Even if the thing was only 50% efficient (nothing is 100% but you would probably be talking more like 90%) then you are only talking 5W.

Or am I getting something totally screwy?

Got the same and it just does its work perfecly.