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Arturia Minifuse 2 Review (Audio Interface)

Rate this interface

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 2 1.8%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 67 60.4%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 39 35.1%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 3 2.7%

  • Total voters
    111

amirm

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This is a review and detailed measurements of the Arturia Minifuse 2 DAC, ADC, MIDI and headphone amplifier. It was kindly purchased new by a member for $147 and sent to me for testing.
Arturia Minifuse 2 Review DAC ADC Headphone Audio Interface Balanced.jpg

The form factor is similar to other products in the market in this price range. Controls have rubberized paint on them which they feel good. Hopefully they last and don't get sticky. Back panel shows the usual connections:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Review DAC ADC Back Panel USB Headphone Audio Interface Balanced.jpg


Arturia Minifuse 2 DAC Measurements
I downloaded the control center which updated the firmware quickly and efficiently. It doesn't have any features other than bar graph for input level and a couple of other controls. ASIO driver was included which was a good thing as I ran into an issue using my ASIO emulation in one test. Here is our DAC dashboard:

Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC Audio Interface Balanced.png


I was disappointed that the output was limited to 3.2 volt (matches spec). I like to see 4 volt out especially in a pro device. SINAD lands the unit below average but still OK for the class:
Best audio interface dac review.png


Sweeping the output level (by changing digital values) we see an odd issue at low levels:

Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC  THD vs Level Audio Interface Balanced.png


Seems like a bug to me.

Noise performance is again, "OK:"
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC Dynamic Range  Audio Interface Balanced.png


Multitone is good:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC Multitone Audio Interface Balanced.png


IMD shows high noise level and worse at 44.1 kHz:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC IMD Distortion Audio Interface Balanced.png


Filter is the typical half-lazy one:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC Filter Audio Interface Balanced.png


Linearity is OK:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC Linearity Audio Interface Balanced.png


Jitter lands in the same category:

Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC Jitter Audio Interface Balanced.png


THD+N vs frequency is almost off the chart:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC THD vs frequency Audio Interface Balanced.png


That's because this test uses 90 kHz bandwidth and is capturing the noise shaping in the DAC chip:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements DAC FFT Audio Interface Balanced.png


This essentially means the device provides no value with higher sample rates than 48 kHz or so.

Arturia Minifuse 2 ADC Measurements
I was once again disappointed that the input was limited to just 2 volts with the gain knob at miniumum:

Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements ADC Audio Interface Balanced.png


Best Budget Cheap Audio Interface Review.png


For a pro interface I like to see much better performance.

Dynamic range is OK:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements ADC Dynamic Range Audio Interface Balanced.png


As is frequency response:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements ADC Frequency Response Audio Interface Balanced.png


IMD naturally saturates early but has great noise level:

Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements ADC IMD Audio Interface Balanced.png


I suspect the low noise is due to turning the gain so far down.

THD+N vs frequency is not that great:
Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements ADC THD vs Frequency Audio Interface Balanced.png


Arturia Minifuse 2 Headphone Measurements
Our power sweeps indicate a checklist item headphone amplifier:

Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements Headphone Power 32 ohm Audio Interface Balanced.png


Arturia Minifuse 2 Measurements Headphone Power 300 ohm Audio Interface Balanced.png


But is compounded with whatever ails the DAC at low levels.

Conclusions
The minifuse 2 goes after the market that Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 captures at same price point. Lot of the measurements look similar to that so I suspect the same DAC/ADC is used here. Overall though, the Minifuse 2 underperforms the Scarlett 2i2 by a bit. So the only reason to get it is if there is better access/support for the Minifuse (Arturia is a French company).

Normally I would not recommend this device. But I am going to marginally do so given its cost.

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As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome.

Any donations are much appreciated using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
 

DWPress

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Just good enough that if you haven't ponied up for a Umik and have an old phantom powered measurement mic that it'll do without breaking the bank. Perfect for the amateur musician market it's targeting though.
 

reza

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Often the primary selling point of such an interface is its low latency performance and driver support. RME, for instance, is popular in the pro world becuase of its low latency and hassle free drivers, not the qualities that we care about. I wonder how Arturia performs in that regard. It could still be a competent device, SINAD not withstanding, if it delivers on those fronts.
 

F1308

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$147 deserves a rating relative to "miracle
category".
Coke&corn not included to avoid doubling its offering price !!!!
Thank you, Arturia.

Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité and achievable music for all.

What would you vote when rating a Ford T ?
 
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Blumlein 88

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Its DAC is on par with the Focusrite 2i2 and ADC on par with the Motu M2. It combined the weaknesses of both its competitors, but damn that white color version looks so slick.
I agree. Here is another one that looks sick in white though at more expense. Plus I Iike such devices with the controls on the upper panel.
Crimson_white_top_webTitle.jpg

They also have the simpler less expensive Creon model in white.

HiResCreon-white_side_transbackg-2-2048x1365.png
 
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Vict0r

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A hint of a recommendation, taking into account the price? I like where this is going! Value is king. :D
 

PeteL

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Aside the latency and hassle free driver considerations that other members pointed out (I don’t know how it does in that regard). Looks like this comes bundled with a more complete set of software tools compared to the Motu or the Focusrite.
 

Pauper

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I have the Minifuse 1 and also Audient id14. I bought the the Minifuse for portability and to have a more simple set up. It also comes with a very good free software package. It has welcome features like direct monitoring and low latency.
I paid £79 - show me something better at that price….the white colour is also cool!
 

mightycicadalord

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Often the primary selling point of such an interface is its low latency performance and driver support. RME, for instance, is popular in the pro world becuase of its low latency and hassle free drivers, not the qualities that we care about. I wonder how Arturia performs in that regard. It could still be a competent device, SINAD not withstanding, if it delivers on those fronts.

Almost all budget pro interfaces are using thesycon driver, and latency performance is largely the same between them. You can usually expect the typical 6-7ms rtl at 44.1khz. 4.5-5ms is about as low as you'll find over usb.
 
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Nango

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@amirm .... Regarding the 32 multitone you use to emulate real music, is it possible to add transients with their attack and their vanishing as happens under regular conditions?
 

staticV3

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@Nango here's what the 32-tone signal looks like in the time domain:
Multitone waveform.png
I'm not sure how one would "add transients" to it and how to present that data with the usual FFT.

Are you perhaps interested in square wave and impulse response measurements instead?
 

Nango

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@Nango here's what the 32-tone signal looks like in the time domain:
View attachment 204624
I'm not sure how one would "add transients" to it and how to present that data with the usual FFT.

Are you perhaps interested in square wave and impulse response measurements instead?
No, I think would come closer to what we understand under "music" instead of 32 different tones.
 

Pauper

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What it comes down to in these type of devices is often the layout and if it suits your logic. As I mentioned I also own the Audient id14 and find it overly complicated, i.e.it’s multi purpose control knob and software mixer.
The Minifuse really is pnp. As for sound quality, I can’t differentiate between the two.
Also, as already pointed out, most of these devices use the same or similar circuits so it’s down to personal preferences.
 

Tks

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No, I think would come closer to what we understand under "music" instead of 32 different tones.
You think what would come closer?

I heard when you said "add transients", what we're asking is, how that would actually work? (on top of the "with their attack and vanishing as happens under regular conditions). What would be regular conditional representation of this when using a multitone FFT method?
 

PeteL

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I have the Minifuse 1 and also Audient id14. I bought the the Minifuse for portability and to have a more simple set up. It also comes with a very good free software package. It has welcome features like direct monitoring and low latency.
I paid £79 - show me something better at that price….the white colour is also cool!
I have the ID14, I am not certain why you think it's less portable and more complicated? Trying to understand what you mean it seams to me two products in the very same category, around the same size and pretty simple, no? What's the major difference to you?

Edit, oh I didn't see your second post. Interesting, always tought it was as straight forward as they come. You don't need to use the mixer, having the wheel change from headphone out to line outs is hard to mess up too. The selected button is brightly lit in green. Interestingly, I had a Tascam UH-7000, great performance but what a mess of a UI and driver support. Funny how different people see thing from an other angle. for me ID14 is the Kiss principle at it's best.
 
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