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-   -   Time for a new Audio Interface (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=569568)

MikeBmusic 01-17-2020 07:04 AM

Time for a new Audio Interface
 
I've been using a Tascam US800 for about 8 years now. More inputs than I needed, but got a great 'barely used' deal from someone who just got it for demo purposes. I never used more than 3 inputs simultaneously for recording, but it was convenient to have rear line inputs to keep my keyboard plugged in, two headphone jacks. The non-balanced RCA outputs were never an issue, despite adapters to go to balanced inputs on my monitors.

However, one of the output jacks stopped working, and can't be remedied as the jacks are part of an assembly directly mounted to the PC board. I'm using an adapter to split one of the headphone outputs to my monitors, but there is a buzz/hum doing that.

So I've got to replace it. I'm looking at the Tascam 4x4, as it has the features I need, only thing I am concerned about is driver problems (reading reviews, it seems some users did have them). It looks like Tascam may have discontinued this AI, so I need to hop on it if I want to get one as their new line of AIs are much more expensive, and I fear may not be compatible with my old Win 7 OS on my studio PC. The 4x4 is on Amazon for $165, I can't see any other options with at least 4 inputs in that price range except the Behringer 404, and I am not partial to Behr products. Of course if there are problems getting the Tascam working due to the drivers, Amazon returns are easy.

Comments/suggestions welcome.

DCCougar 01-17-2020 07:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MikeBmusic (Post 6267448)
...I never used more than 3 inputs simultaneously for recording, but it was convenient to have rear line inputs to keep my keyboard plugged in...

I've done a lot of multitracking and I've never used more than one input on my Scarlett 2i2. :D I could see dual mic'ing a guitar (but I've only got one mic :rolleyes:), but I'm having trouble seeing how you really need 3 inputs simultaneously....

keith.rogers 01-17-2020 08:23 AM

The reviews for that Tascam look middling. In your price range, the Behringer is really the only new option that has 4 inputs.

Something used probably isn't a huge gamble if there's a good return policy and you check it out thoroughly, and get something recent. I see GC has a bunch of Focusrite Scarlett 6i6s and I saw some 18i8s - didn't get through everything. (You want 2nd gen in the Scarlett line.) They have 4 mic pres and dual headphone outputs - both features I've found useful on my Saffire Pro 26 (earlier FW version of the 18i8 I've assumed).

Rudy4 01-17-2020 08:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DCCougar (Post 6267511)
I've done a lot of multitracking and I've never used more than one input on my Scarlett 2i2. :D I could see dual mic'ing a guitar (but I've only got one mic :rolleyes:), but I'm having trouble seeing how you really need 3 inputs simultaneously....

Even as a solo recording, many folks want to mic their guitar in stereo and add a LDC vocal mic. That would be a very common example of why someone would want 3 inputs.

KevWind 01-17-2020 09:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MikeBmusic (Post 6267448)
I've been using a Tascam US800 for about 8 years now. More inputs than I needed, but got a great 'barely used' deal from someone who just got it for demo purposes. I never used more than 3 inputs simultaneously for recording, but it was convenient to have rear line inputs to keep my keyboard plugged in, two headphone jacks. The non-balanced RCA outputs were never an issue, despite adapters to go to balanced inputs on my monitors.

However, one of the output jacks stopped working, and can't be remedied as the jacks are part of an assembly directly mounted to the PC board. I'm using an adapter to split one of the headphone outputs to my monitors, but there is a buzz/hum doing that.

So I've got to replace it. I'm looking at the Tascam 4x4, as it has the features I need, only thing I am concerned about is driver problems (reading reviews, it seems some users did have them). It looks like Tascam may have discontinued this AI, so I need to hop on it if I want to get one as their new line of AIs are much more expensive, and I fear may not be compatible with my old Win 7 OS on my studio PC. The 4x4 is on Amazon for $165, I can't see any other options with at least 4 inputs in that price range except the Behringer 404, and I am not partial to Behr products. Of course if there are problems getting the Tascam working due to the drivers, Amazon returns are easy.

Comments/suggestions welcome.

Mike so what would say is your actual Budget range, are you talking $200 or less ? Can you go higher ?

MikeBmusic 01-17-2020 09:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KevWind (Post 6267583)
Mike so what would say is your actual Budget range, are you talking $200 or less ? Can you go higher ?

Yes, I can go higher, if its worth it!

As to the inputs - I'd like to be able to keep my keyboard plugged in (2 line-ins, rather than preamp-ed inputs).
Can't remember the last time I used 2 mics + the pickup to record an acoustic.

Chipotle 01-17-2020 10:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MikeBmusic (Post 6267638)
Yes, I can go higher, if its worth it!

As to the inputs - I'd like to be able to keep my keyboard plugged in (2 line-ins, rather than preamp-ed inputs).
Can't remember the last time I used 2 mics + the pickup to record an acoustic.

Scarlett 8i6? Two combi inputs with preamps, 4 line inputs (plus 4 line outs and 2 headphone outputs). Can be had right now for $250.

ljguitar 01-17-2020 12:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MikeBmusic (Post 6267638)
Yes, I can go higher, if its worth it!

As to the inputs - I'd like to be able to keep my keyboard plugged in (2 line-ins, rather than preamp-ed inputs).
Can't remember the last time I used 2 mics + the pickup to record an acoustic.

Hi MBm

The MOTU M4 is a great USB-C (can go from USB-C to USB-2 with supplied cable) and it has 2 Combined (XLR/1/4" with preamp) inputs, plus two balanced " inputs on the back of the unit.

I used MOTU interfaces in the studio (and out) for over 10 years. This is a great and newly designed interface for $220 USD.

Says it supports Windows 7, 8, 10

MOTU preamps are some of the best. This may be a prosumer product, but it works well, and seems above average.

If you only need 2 inputs, then the M2 is basically the same with 2 in/out for $170 USD.




MikeBmusic 01-17-2020 12:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chipotle (Post 6267659)
Scarlett 8i6? Two combi inputs with preamps, 4 line inputs (plus 4 line outs and 2 headphone outputs). Can be had right now for $250.

That is one I've looked at.

MikeBmusic 01-27-2020 07:41 AM

Update: Ordered the Scarlett 8i6, $250 on sale at Amazon and couple of other places. Also looked at the 4i4, but I noticed it is only bus-powered, I prefer something that doesn't tax the USB power on my old recording computer, specially when phantom power is needed.
Arrives this week!

Mr. Paul 01-27-2020 08:08 AM

Mike, one thing to keep in mind ... if you have any trouble with the Scarlett, I have found their support to be accessible and very helpful.

MikeBmusic 01-28-2020 07:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mr. Paul (Post 6277019)
Mike, one thing to keep in mind ... if you have any trouble with the Scarlett, I have found their support to be accessible and very helpful.

I don't anticipate any issues once its set up. And easy return via Amazon if necessary.

dnf777 01-31-2020 05:24 AM

Waiting on the new person us IO FADERPORT INTERFACE. I use studio one, so hopefully no issues with compatibility. Review to follow

BallisticSquid 01-31-2020 06:29 AM

I upgraded my trusty Yamaha Audiogram 6 to this Focusrite 8i6 recently. I really like it, though it was a bit of an adjustment for me and drivers/firmware had some bugs initially.

One thing I have discovered is that the routing program will sometimes stop doing what it's supposed to do. For instance, if you mute an input and it doesn't actually mute it. When things like this start happening, I exit the routing program and go back in and it's fine.

A big problem I found were problems trying to record from the SPDIF input. That has been fixed thankfully.

I only record from one input at a time, but it's nice to be able to leave things connected so when you do record, you just use the appropriate input without having to plug/unplug stuff.

I like that it has 2 headphone outputs so I can monitor when I'm recording somebody else. One disappointment for me was I was hoping to connect my subwoofer to the second output. I can, but I can't combine both outputs together so they are both controlled by the volume knob.

I'd love to hear how you get on with it after you've had time to play with it.

MikeBmusic 01-31-2020 06:53 AM

It arrived the other day, hope to get it set up over the weekend.
Confused over your 'muting an input' comment - maybe you mean with a mic plugged in (that is not being tracked) it still feeds into the headphone monitoring? I always turn my input volume controls down when not in use. The rear line-ins will only be used for my keyboard most of the time, so either not in use (silent) or being used. Won't be using the SPDIF (or MIDI).


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