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cheap audio interface suggestions?

Discussion in 'DAW's, Computers & Software' started by bowdagger, May 28, 2010.

  1. bowdagger

    bowdagger Guest

    Hey everyone, new to this forum so excuse me if I'm in the wrong section. I searched through old posts and didn't find my answer.

    I just bought a lenovo T410 as a sort of mobile workstation for composing. This isn't a main DAW replacement as my PC will still be used for the bulk of my work. I run Cubase 5, Pro Tools LE 8, Reason 4, and several sample libraries through my mbox 2 pro and JBL 2325p monitors.

    although i love my setup for what it is, the mbox 2 pro and monitors aren't that practical in terms of mobility. The mbox 2 pro wouldn't be terrible, except that my laptop has a firewire mini 4-pin connection and not your normal 6-pin. This obviously means it can't power my mbox, so i'd need to bring a power adapter everywhere with it.

    Long story short, I'm looking for a cheap alternative for a mobile audio interface. If it can run into firewire mini and be powered, perfect, if not i'll even take USB. The sound card on the laptop just really can't handle a big intensive project. A headphone port on it is all i would need.

    I'd like to stay within the range of a couple hundred.

    Thanks guys.
  2. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    Aug 28, 2008
    Cincinnati, OH
    Home Page:
    Looks like your mbox allows for 6 channels of audio recording, only 2 of which are mic inputs.

    So unless you have external preamps (doesn't appear that you do), the question is this:
    Do you want to record more than 2 microphone inputs?

    If no, what you have is fine - In this case, it seems to me you have what you need, but are feeling lazy- suck it up and lug around the power supply, a power strip, and an extension cord, for that matter.
    Get a backpack or bag to put it all in.

    If you want more than 2 mic inputs, you need a different interface. One that's twice your budget.

    Finally, if you're using the mbox via firewire, you shouldn't be using your laptop's sound card at all.

    Unless there's something I'm missing?

    Also, this forum may not be the best place for your question. Try the Home Recording or Budget Gear forums.
  3. bowdagger

    bowdagger Guest

    yeah the issue isn't needing more inputs, its mostly a lazy convenience thing. Bassically when i'm not at home all i'll need is some sort of external sound card to handle all the plugs and sample libraries ill be using. The mbox 2 pro can handle that fine, but itd be a pain to take it everywhere.

    I figured maybe some cheap solution could exist, but from what ive seen through research there really isn't any.

    any experience with an mbox 2 micro? something like that would be perfect if it were cheaper...
  4. Shadow_7

    Shadow_7 Active Member

    Mar 22, 2010
    Do you need multi-tracking on this mobile on location rig? You might just get one of those battery geek powering options for it. Duct tape it to the unit. Run on batteries on location, charge it at home. Perhaps the same weight, but it might be a little more convenient. Depending on how often you need to charge up. And how long you need to run on a charge. Batteries are lighter than feet of cable. And less problematic in some venues.

    I run on a battery powered field recorder, but I don't need multi-tracking or more than two tracks (yet). Push a power button, push record, all of ten seconds to start recording. Concert hall or corn field, same rig, no problem.

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