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I am looking into the above (Audio interface eg. good mic preamp's with converters, usb, 2-8 xlr/TRS inputs without midi.

I use midi lots already and have a essentially a midi interface built into my Roland RD 700SX keyboard. The keys plug into my laptop via usb (midi) and the midi sockets in the back of the keyboard (Midi in, thru1,thru2,and out) can act as an interface for additional devices should I require it, which is not likely) therefore I do not need to pay for midi plug-a-bility again in an audio interface which most seem to have.

I want reasonable mic preamp's with converters (without midi).
Is there anything you can recommend? Under $800 AUD


Boswell Mon, 08/01/2011 - 04:49

You presumably mean analog-to-digital rather than digital-to-analog. What I would do is forget about whether interfaces have MIDI capability or not and concentrate on what pre-amp and converter quality you can get for your money.

The problem is that there are very few multi-channel USB interfaces around at your budget level that are worth having. I don't know precisely what things cost down under, but something like the Lexicon IONIX U82S or the MOTU 828 Mk3 may come in your price range.

YawningJaws Mon, 08/01/2011 - 14:57

Sorry analog digital thing was a typo (though technically there are converters for both directions (in (from analog mic Pre's) and back out to hear it)

I have looked at the Motu but it is higher in price here than my budget will allow, though likely a good bit of kit for the price and a contender. I don't know much about Lexicon but I notice this model is a couple of years old now and there are some new interesting things coming on the market that may well be better value than either of these plus I don't like all the inputs being at the back. I like the RME stuff too but hey, us poor people have to make do.

A unit that has caught my attention is the Roland » OCTA-CAPTURE [[url=http://[/URL]="http://www.rolandus…"]Roland U.S. - OCTA-CAPTURE?: Hi-Speed USB Audio Interface[/]="http://www.rolandus…"]Roland U.S. - OCTA-CAPTURE?: Hi-Speed USB Audio Interface[/]
They do a newer smaller version the Quad Capture as well. realistically i only need 2 inputs 99% of the time but was thinking about future proofing a little just in case I need more inputs (though this will always only be a small number anyway.)

The Octa Capture build quality will be there, I know Roland have had a lot of their gear and anyone that has seen the unit says this, very solid build metal case etc..
Not many reviews yet but the ones I have seen were favourable.

I would be interested in any thoughts. Cheers.

BobRogers Tue, 08/02/2011 - 04:06

I'm with Boswell in that $800 seems to be kind of a dead price range for interfaces. Most of the contenders in there seem to be essentially larger versions of interfaces in the $400-600 range. More bells and whistles but no increase in quality of the pres and converters. There is a big jump in quality about $1200-1400. So my initial reaction is to either spend less or (my recommendation) save until you can spend more. (This is my impression of the US market. I understand that prices of many items are different in Australia.)

With that said, if you are a big Roland fan and have confidence in their products that's a rational reason to try their interface (probably a better reason than a review on the internet from someone you never met.) As Boswell said - if you go for it, report back and let us know what you think.