USB or PCI audio interface ?

Discussion in 'Computing' started by DethoticA, Aug 9, 2013.

  1. DethoticA

    DethoticA Active Member

    Mar 25, 2011
    Hi Guys,
    I would like to replace my sound card so I am looking around for a new one. At the present moment I use Creative X-Fi Prowhich is about 7 years old and now causes a few problems here and there due to poorly written 64-bit Windows 7 drivers... Anyway, I need a new card for home recording and I cant make up my mind whether to go with PCI or USB, I must've searched half of the internet and couldn't find the answer - on one site people say that USB cards are fine and on another say that USBs are too slow (high latency). I record 1 guitar at a time, so dont need lots of input ports, but I do need midi In/outfor my Roland drumkit and as low as possible latency (5-7ms max). Any suggestions? Oh yes, my budget is pretty low around £100-£350...

    P.S. If you check links below you would hear what sort of quality I would be quite happy with ;)

    From ashes Thou shall rise - YouTube
    Metamorph - YouTube
  2. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2010
    Boulder, Colorado
    Home Page:
    If you get your guitar tone before going into the recorder (as opposed to using an amp sim live) then there are many USB interfaces offer true zero latency input monitoring with simple front panel control. Even interfaces with DSP input monitoring can be pretty fast.

    If you need to use the computer in place of pedals and an amp then latency will be determined by the computer's ability to process. Similarly with MIDI, it's how fast the computer can play back the samples. The interface itself is not the major source of latency once you force the signal to pass through the CPU.
  3. DethoticA

    DethoticA Active Member

    Mar 25, 2011
    Thanks for you reply, I do rely on realtime Soft amp sims a lot and in the past when I had a slower PC with latency above 7ms it was almost impossible to record something tight&fast with more than 3 guitar tracks,so for me latency is everything... I wondered if any users here have USB sound cards and if they have any issues with Soft sims recording...
  4. Paschalis I.

    Paschalis I. Guest

    If I were you I would choose PCI or Firewire cause they usually have less latency
    BUT one sound card that I really love is the RME Babyface.

    It's USB, has great Analog to Digital Converters and low latency :)
  5. Studio86

    Studio86 Active Member

    Jun 6, 2013
    Cape Girardeau, Mo
    I think that you'd be fine with USB 2.0.
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