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Audio interface suggestion - Upgrade from Steinberg ur22

dsanket

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Hello ! I was using Steinberg ur22 and AT- 2035 condenser microphone.
I decided to put it back in my home for my father and buy new gear for me (Upgrade from current gear)

I use Logic pro on Macbook pro, mainly record vocals (Ballad style, Indian music) with acoustic Guitar. Never tried recording drums. Mainly songs having unplugged vibe. Thinking of buying AT-4040 as new microphone. Headphones are Shure SRH-440.

Really confused about audio interface.
Certainly looking something better than Steinberg UR22. Vocal recording quality is my main priority. What would you suggest ?

1. Audient id14mkii
2. Motu M4
3. Anything else ?

Thanks in advance! And looking to learn a lot from this wonderful group.
 

Ellie

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For the mic, Rode NT1. That thing is actually flawless.

As for the interface, Arturia Minifuse 1. Costs 100 USD, sounds just as good as anything else when recording, has all the features you'd need.
 

RickSanchez

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You can search here on audio interfaces that have been reviewed: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?pages/Audio_Equipment_Reviews/
  • Use the Type filter --> "ADC (Dedicated)" and "ADC/DAC Interface"
  • Use whatever additional filters you need, such as price
Looking at measurements:
  • The Motu M4 seems like a solid performer from Amir's review.
  • Another good option would be the Focusrite Scarlet 4i4. Amir hasn't reviewed that device, but he did measure the Scarlet 2i2. (There's no guarantee the devices would have similar performance but one would hope so.)
Both devices (again, I'm referring to the Focusrite 2i2 here since that's the one that has been measured) are poor performers as headphone amps, so if you need that capability you should look at buying a dedicated amp.
 

AnalogSteph

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As for the interface, Arturia Minifuse 1. Costs 100 USD, sounds just as good as anything else when recording, has all the features you'd need.
I would go with the Minifuse 2 as the 1 has fewer inputs than the old UR22... maybe even a 4 if even more inputs would be of use. The headphone output isn't perfect but drives low-impedance loads a whole lot better than the gen3 Scarletts at least.

It would no doubt be a nice upgrade over the old UR22 in terms of measured performance... mic-in dynamic range is 11-12 dB greater compared to even the UR22 MkII (and still a hair better than the 2i2 gen3, but really both are getting close to what the CS4272 ADC can do). So you could have 5-6 dB more headroom and still 5-6 dB lower input noise at the same time. The mic input can also take +9 dBu in absolute terms (now standard in this price range) rather than just 0 dBu in the old UR22, so you are correspondingly less likely to clip that - sing as loud as you want. ;) (With AT4040: 134 dB SPL peak, pad off, 144 dB SPL w/pad engaged.)

The choice of mic may be a matter of taste more than anything else... I am under the impression that the responses of AT40xx LDC mics are tuned to give good results with singing vocals out of the box, while the NT1 delivers a flatter response that will sound more natural on spoken word but may not cut through the mix as well without some help in the EQ department. Compare their specified frequency response graphs. (If you're using EQ anyway, not a big deal, it shouldn't take more than a few bands to turn one into a good approximation of the other. Both are great mics otherwise.) The previous AT2035 is closer to the NT1 response save for a slight general tilt towards the highs, it's another nice all-round mic.
 

Ellie

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I would go with the Minifuse 2 as the 1 has fewer inputs than the old UR22... maybe even a 4 if even more inputs would be of use. The headphone output isn't perfect but drives low-impedance loads a whole lot better than the gen3 Scarletts at least.

It would no doubt be a nice upgrade over the old UR22 in terms of measured performance... mic-in dynamic range is 11-12 dB greater compared to even the UR22 MkII (and still a hair better than the 2i2 gen3, but really both are getting close to what the CS4272 ADC can do). So you could have 5-6 dB more headroom and still 5-6 dB lower input noise at the same time. The mic input can also take +9 dBu in absolute terms (now standard in this price range) rather than just 0 dBu in the old UR22, so you are correspondingly less likely to clip that - sing as loud as you want. ;) (With AT4040: 134 dB SPL peak, pad off, 144 dB SPL w/pad engaged.)

The choice of mic may be a matter of taste more than anything else... I am under the impression that the responses of AT40xx LDC mics are tuned to give good results with singing vocals out of the box, while the NT1 delivers a flatter response that will sound more natural on spoken word but may not cut through the mix as well without some help in the EQ department. Compare their specified frequency response graphs. (If you're using EQ anyway, not a big deal, it shouldn't take more than a few bands to turn one into a good approximation of the other. Both are great mics otherwise.) The previous AT2035 is closer to the NT1 response save for a slight general tilt towards the highs, it's another nice all-round mic.

Generally all true. I suggested the Minifuse 1 because it didn't seem like they needed extra inputs, but if they might in the future, Minifuse 2 is the way.

NT1 is my go-to because I do lots of EQ, but honestly, AT2035 is a great mic as well. I don't think they need a new one, I must've misread that they were asking for mic suggestions from the 2035.
 

Tangband

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Hello ! I was using Steinberg ur22 and AT- 2035 condenser microphone.
I decided to put it back in my home for my father and buy new gear for me (Upgrade from current gear)

I use Logic pro on Macbook pro, mainly record vocals (Ballad style, Indian music) with acoustic Guitar. Never tried recording drums. Mainly songs having unplugged vibe. Thinking of buying AT-4040 as new microphone. Headphones are Shure SRH-440.

Really confused about audio interface.
Certainly looking something better than Steinberg UR22. Vocal recording quality is my main priority. What would you suggest ?

1. Audient id14mkii
2. Motu M4
3. Anything else ?

Thanks in advance! And looking to learn a lot from this wonderful group.
Right now I have a Audient id14 MK1. Audients preamps are outstanding, really good . Probably a big step up in soundquality from a Steinberg. I wouldnt rekommend Audient to a PC guy, because of buggy software at Audient. But youre a Mac-user like myself so it should be fine.

Motu M4 seems to be great also.

An interface driving two 48 v phantom condencer mics at the same time, needs more than 5 volt to avoid compromises in sound quality. Audient has a separate 12 v power supply because of this. The preamps quality are more important for soundquality than the A/D and dacs involved.
 
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Cadence

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After much research and many questions on which interface to choose between recent ones, including Focusrite Clarett+ 2 Pre, SSL2+, Motu M4 and Audient ID14 MKII, I decided to purchase the Motu M4, because it seems to be the interface with the best price/quality ratio and without particular weak points. The other interfaces either have notable weaknesses (e.g. headphone amp of the SSL2+) or are in a different price bracket (e.g. Focusrite Clarett+ 2 Pre).

I just wished the M4 had an ADAT input port, like the ID14 MKII for example. Nonetheless, I deemed this missing feature not to be a deal breaker, when considering the quality of the interface. The Motu M2 could also be fine, but for a slightly higher price I believe one should choose the M4.
 

armandjse

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Hi everyone! I'm new to this forum so I've been digging a lot of posts. I'm a music producer from Colombia.
I have a question I hope you guys can help me clear it out.

I own a Macbook Pro M1 which isn't supported by my Focusrite Saffire Pro 40 so I'm planning to buy a new interface (Clarett 2 Pre or Motu M4)
My question is: WIll I be able to slave my Saffire Pro 40 via ADAT to the Clarett 2 Pre to make use of the Pro 40's inputs?

Thanks everyone!
 

AnalogSteph

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My question is: WIll I be able to slave my Saffire Pro 40 via ADAT to the Clarett 2 Pre to make use of the Pro 40's inputs?
Looks like it should basically work:
How do I connect and sync an external preamp unit with an optical ADAT output to my Focusrite interface via ADAT?
How do I set up my Saffire or Scarlett 1st Gen for Standalone Mode?

If memory serves, ADAT supports 8x 48 kHz max. I am not sure how one would do e.g. 4x 96 kHz or 2x 192 kHz if higher sample rates are desired, you may have to experiment.
 
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