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Can't Decide Between Two Audio Interfaces

Discussion in 'Converters / Interfaces' started by helloworld, Jun 10, 2009.

  1. helloworld

    helloworld Guest

    For a long time I've been thinking about getting this one
    http://www.guitarcenter.com/Digidesign-Mbox-2-USB-Audio-MIDI-Pro-Tools-LE-Interface-103398913-i1125902.gc

    The Mbox 2. I heard a lot of + things about it and how good the sound quality is and stuff.

    I've been doing a little bit of research on this one too.
    http://www.guitarcenter.com/M-Audio-Fast-Track-Ultra-USB-2-0-Audio-Interface-104806138-i1383564.gc

    Not Sure if this one is better than the Mbox 2 though. This one is a firewire and has 4 built in preamps. (also cheaper)

    I'm still not sure about Pro's and Con's between these two interfaces.
    I need help picking one to buy :(
     
  2. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    The M-Audio Fast Track Ultra USB 2.0 is USB, not FireWire. There's a clue in its name. The pre-amps in it are not great, but they are better than those in the Mbox 2. USB is OK for a couple of channels. For more than that, go with FireWire.

    That said, I would seriously look at interfaces other than these two. For two-channel units, both the Edirol FA-101 and the TC Electronic Konnekt 24D are higher audio quality and are in the same price range. Even the Presonus FP10 would be preferable to the two units you mention, and gives you 8 channels into the bargain.
     
  3. IIRs

    IIRs Well-Known Member

    Unless he wants to run some flavour of pro-tools? In which case Digidesign or M-Audio are the only choices...
     
  4. helloworld

    helloworld Guest

    Well, Personally I don't really know so much about either of em. I'm just doing a solo project kinda thing so all I need are like 2-3 channels max. I'm just looking for the best sound quality giving processor there is with my tight budget.
     
  5. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Konnekt 24D spanks everything in it's bracket.
     
  6. Space

    Space Well-Known Member

    USB is a choice for folks with no choice. If you have ever had an external usb drive and a usb mouse on one box, and had the hard drive dropping chunks of data while the mouse is trying to negotiate the screen you can visually notice the bottleneck problem that usb presents. The mouse will momentarily freeze.

    It is not an option for audio. Even at entry level. It is more of a deterrent, probably designed by a guitar player wannabees Father.

    And just so it doesn't go without saying, when usb was being "thought up" IEEE 1394 / firewire was already a standard.
     
  7. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    This is almost always a USB issue because people buy the cheap ass computers with raw BIOS, slow hard drives and crappy chipset drivers that only meet basic requirements for email and web surfing. Shouldn't be using those computers for audio and expect perfect performance. The root cause is often not having a separate IRQ for each port or at least one IRQ per controller

    I have had both great and poor audio performance with the same USB audio interfaces I use depending on the computers that they are installed on and how they are used. While PCI, PCIe, and ExpressCard are usually better choices for an audio interface, if USB was as bad as you and others claim, it would never work right or ever be reliable and I know first hand that USB is quite capable as a reliable recording tool.

    Bzzt. Wrong. USB audio interfaces can work as well as any other audio interface. You need to start with PC hardware that is capable of your expectations and performance. As it is in all things that invlove audio, the variables have to be understood, configured and managed correctly.
     

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