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USB audio interfaces interest

What USB audio interfaces do you want measurements made of?

  • Swissonic UA-2x2

    Votes: 15 13.9%
  • Midiplus Studio M

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Presonus AudioBox iOne

    Votes: 4 3.7%
  • Focusrite Scarlett Solo 3rd Gen

    Votes: 67 62.0%
  • Audient iD4

    Votes: 31 28.7%
  • Steinberg UR22 MK2

    Votes: 25 23.1%
  • Roland Rubix22

    Votes: 10 9.3%
  • Presonus Studio 24

    Votes: 11 10.2%
  • Mackie Onyx Artist 1.2

    Votes: 1 0.9%
  • Icon Cube 4nano

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    108

q3cpma

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#41
Cannot second this. I have a pair of Mackie HR824 (old version, inherited, currently used for Webex :eek: in the office 'cause no one in the family wanted to have themo_O) and they are not bad at all. The K&H O300D are better in several aspects (precision, off axis response) but they cost much more, and I could well live with the Mackies if it's necessary. Also me and my brother both own a 1402 mixing console and they are reliable and deliver good sound.
From what I've heard (don't quote me on this), it's only recently that the quality started going down
I'm interested in the Yamahas because they have an ADC. Makes them ideal for measuering room response.
Well, these all have an ADC.
 

somebodyelse

Senior Member
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#44
Are USB audio interfaces suitable for measuring sound as sound and vibration devices? Such as NI PCI-4461
That's rather off topic, so I'd suggest starting a new thread if you want a serious answer. In short: possibly, depending on requirements.
 
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#45
What about the Mackie Producer?

It looks like that Focusrite interfaces are getting cheaper and cheaper in build quality, but the price dont.
I cant support such a company.

have you ever heard about the Icon Cube 4Nano (ProDrive III).
https://iconproaudio.com/product/cube-4nano-prodrive/
The specs are looking great and its cheap. (with spdif and midi in/out)

DAC: THD+N: -100dB; Dynamic Range, S/N: 114dB
ADC: THD+N: -98dB; Dynamic Range, S/N: 112dB

interested in audient, more specifically the id22 which which seemed to measure well in this gearslutz thread, better than the more expensive and newer id44
https://www.gearslutz.com/board/gea...ps-means-audio-diffmaker-57.html#post13615522
great device, but in a different price range.
 
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JohnYang1997

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#46
What about the Mackie Producer?

It looks like that Focusrite interfaces are getting cheaper and cheaper in build quality, but the price dont.
I cant support such a company.

have you ever heard about the Icon Cube 4Nano (ProDrive III).
https://iconproaudio.com/product/cube-4nano-prodrive/
The specs are looking great and its cheap. (with spdif and midi in/out)

DAC: THD+N: -100dB; Dynamic Range, S/N: 114dB
ADC: THD+N: -98dB; Dynamic Range, S/N: 112dB


great device, but in a different price range.
Focusrite is the only "cheap" "professional" brand I can trust. They just have superior real world performance and design sophistication. You won't see any design problem. If you like their old model go ahead nothing wrong with that.
 
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#47
i had ordered a 6i6 2rd to use with my win10 system (i5-8700k, 16gb ram, gtx980) last week and got crackling noise even when playing music via media player or vlc. the system was fresh. same with my other win10 pc. the latency in ableton 10 was higher than with my behringer umc204hd by 2ms (96khz/256 samples). one of the headphone amps distorted at 12 o´clock and the right poti does an aweful job. in the past i had also a clarett usb and the 2i4 2rd and they had both some flaws. but ive heard only good things about their preamps :D

Shootout Preamps from one of the most famous low budget interfaces

Thanks to Julian for his great work.
 
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Joined
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#48
i had ordered a 6i6 to use with my win10 system (i5-8700k, 16gb ram, gtx980) last week and got crackling noise even when playing music via media player or vlc. the system was fresh. same with my other win10 pc. the latency in ableton 10 was higher than with my behringer umc204hd by 2ms (96khz/256 samples). one of the headphone amps distorted at 12 o´clock and the right poti does an aweful job. in the past i had also a clarett usb and the 2i4 2rd and they had both some flaws. but ive heard only good things about their preamps :D
I have a 6i6 and ran into the same crackling issues with it on a high end dedicated machine. I tried an Audient iD22 and that was better, but had so-so latency so I bit the bullet and picked up a Babyface Pro and all my crackling and latency issues went away.
 

JohnYang1997

Major Contributor
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#49
i had ordered a 6i6 2rd to use with my win10 system (i5-8700k, 16gb ram, gtx980) last week and got crackling noise even when playing music via media player or vlc. the system was fresh. same with my other win10 pc. the latency in ableton 10 was higher than with my behringer umc204hd by 2ms (96khz/256 samples). one of the headphone amps distorted at 12 o´clock and the right poti does an aweful job. in the past i had also a clarett usb and the 2i4 2rd and they had both some flaws. but ive heard only good things about their preamps :D

Shootout Preamps from one of the most famous low budget interfaces

Thanks to Julian for his great work.
EIN doesn't really matter. Also the performance given by manufacturers can be deceiving. You should look at real world loop thd+n performance of the devices and frequency spectrum(or even better io individually). In that way, focusrite is very good for the price. And it's part of the reason why it's used as cheap measurement equipment for diyers.
Also this video is the reason why this forum exists. True measurements will show all the flaws of a product design instead of a video basically shows: there's no difference. Sadly we only have one amir here, it's hard to pump out many measurements at once without missing out details.
 

q3cpma

Active Member
Joined
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Location
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#51
What about the Mackie Producer?
Another guy asked for it, but I didn't trust Mackie too much. Added the Artist 1.2, since it shares the same DAC while costing much less.
It looks like that Focusrite interfaces are getting cheaper and cheaper in build quality, but the price dont.
I cant support such a company.
Quality didn't seem to go down for me, but prices are indeed soaring.
have you ever heard about the Icon Cube 4Nano (ProDrive III).
https://iconproaudio.com/product/cube-4nano-prodrive/
The specs are looking great and its cheap. (with spdif and midi in/out)

DAC: THD+N: -100dB; Dynamic Range, S/N: 114dB
ADC: THD+N: -98dB; Dynamic Range, S/N: 112dB
Looks very nice, but this model isn't available in their Europe distributor, sadly. Still found it on some site, so I'll add it.

i had ordered a 6i6 2rd to use with my win10 system (i5-8700k, 16gb ram, gtx980) last week and got crackling noise even when playing music via media player or vlc. the system was fresh. same with my other win10 pc. the latency in ableton 10 was higher than with my behringer umc204hd by 2ms (96khz/256 samples). one of the headphone amps distorted at 12 o´clock and the right poti does an aweful job. in the past i had also a clarett usb and the 2i4 2rd and they had both some flaws. but ive heard only good things about their preamps
Have you tried their support? With prices like these, support is supposed to separate the wheat from the chaff.
With such an unstable OS as Windows 10, problems could come from it; were you using it via ASIO or with the class compliant generic driver?
 
Last edited:
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#52
no i havent tried their support, because my unit has also some hardware problems so i decided to send it back immediately.

according to the russian webpage which has been posted above, the new native instrument interfaces (komplete audio 1/2) look very good. i'll give them a try. i also ordered a macki producer and the icon cube 4nano.

And ask them to send in a sample for review! :)
I´ve mailed Thomann to send me a Swissonic demo unit for measurement. Fingers crossed x :cool:
 
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Kane1972

Active Member
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Dec 11, 2018
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#53
I'd love to get some of the Audient units (I think some have higher grade chips, or dual chips) and the Tascam units such as the UH7000 and the US2x2, iXR and Series 102. Need the AD as well as the DA measuring via mic as well as line inputs if possible? Line input is more important to me.
 
Last edited:
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#54
Thomann has answered. they dont have demounits, but i can use their 30 days money back garanty and order a unit. but the shipping cost to usa is to high (40$).

i ordered 3 interfaces last week and tested them with my jbl 305 and some headphones (sennheiser hd660/dt880 600ohm).
icon and mackie are not that good. poor drivers (icon) and faulty potis (mackie).

my favorit so far is the native instruments audio kontrol 2. the lineouts have more power than the behringer umc204hd, thats a big plus. the headphone out has also an own volumenpoti. the power is equal to the behringer but they are different.
the behringer has distortion above 1 o'clock. the native one dont, but is less powerful.

i like the big volumenpoti on the top. btw. the preamps are less noisy then the behringer ones.
 
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#56
The id4 looks nice, but i need a separate knob for the headphone output.

Amazon send me the new focusrite 2i2 3rd today. I´ve compared the max. preamp gain against my umc204hd and the native instruments komplete audio 2.
behringer has the most gain, 2i2 is next and the kontrol 2 the weakest. But the focusrite is the quietest in terms of preamp noise, except in the new Air Mode, which is useless in my opinion.
 

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L5730

Active Member
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#58
I think a full compliment of testing would be required with interfaces to be really useful.
DAC performance is one thing, but if folks want a fantastic USB>unbalanced DAC there is the Topping D10 in a metal case with a nice display and available and fulfilled by Amazon in most countries. Sure it doesn't have a physical volume knob, but cheap analogue ones are crap anyway, and there is no headphone amp, but again, cheap interfaces don't have amazing headphone amps.

The headphone output and DAC performance and notes on the "balanced" outputs if they actually are or not would be good.
With interfaces, the pre-amps are something people generally want to use at some point - else they buy a DAC /+ Heaphone amp.
I think testing ADC and pre-amps thoroughly (channel bleed, strange behaviour, headroom, pads working before the pre-amp etc.) would be time consuming but valuable.

Finally, a test that would not really be so great and easy to do, would be installing the drivers and trying to use the interface over time on Windows 10, Linux and MacOS systems. Some interfaces are stable under one platform but are just useless under another, despite what the manufacturer states as compatibility.

I was going to buy an interface to replace an old PCI card I had in my previous PC. After all the reading and searching and all the moaning I ran into, the only interface that I would seriously consider is the RME Babyface Pro (or old Babyface) or the HDSPe AIO. Cheapest solid and reliable interface is around £600. Low latency, reliable drivers, high quality low noise ADC/DAC sections.

I ended up grabbing the Topping D10 as a way to get audio to my powered monitors. Sounds fantastic! I don't really do much recording, even less without an interface ;) so a plain DAC does me well for now.

For amusement I was going to buy a Behringer UMC 204HD or 404HD and the cheap XM8500 mic or C1 mic. Just a cheap setup for skype and voice overs etc. Play some guitar straight in DI and use FX 'in the box' (round trip latency might be an issue). But I know I'd end up wanting to measure something and things like channel bleed from Ch2 into Ch1 doesn't seem good. The fact that the outputs aren't properly balanced, and the 1/4" inputs must be balanced, else generate a strong 2nd harmonic(?) don't give me good feelings. It's cheap but it seems a bit like too much got missed.

I know Focusrite put their pads in a funny place on the 6i6 gen.1 - after the pre-amp, but before the ADC. So if the gain control was at minimum and the pad was engaged, you just get a clipped signal 10dB(?) lower than you would normally. A pointless pad. Their 2i2 gen.1 couldn't take much signal into the Hi-Z input.

Seems like a lot of work for Amir to test interfaces thoroughly.
A simple DAC, ADC and headphone test might be too simplistic. I guess ASIO4ALL is what is going to be doing the job too, no driver installs due to effort and faff.
 

rwortman

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#59
I have done some recordings using a 404HD with direct in from an electronic piano and voice with a good microphone. They sound pretty damn good. Unless you have people in separate sound proof booths, really mic bleed is probably going to swamp out whatever was measured crosstalk.
 

L5730

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#60
I have done some recordings using a 404HD with direct in from an electronic piano and voice with a good microphone. They sound pretty damn good. Unless you have people in separate sound proof booths, really mic bleed is probably going to swamp out whatever was measured crosstalk.
Sure, I wholeheartedly agree with what you say. My point about bleed was more in terms of wanting to measure some signal at some point, there it would matter. The noise floor of any ADC is very likely below that of what a mic in a normal room would be (-60 dBFS?). It's just me being picky - and for that I must pay more.
 
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