Originally Posted by JamesN
Would a PCI with XLR-in be better than a stand-alone interface? Help!
'better' in what respect? Sound quality should not make a difference, it's ones and zeroes at that point. But all interfaces are not created equal, nor are all systems set up the same. I use high quality mics and mic pres, and converters; and I use an AES interface. I used to use a firewire interface, and I've used USB and Cardbus interfaces, but almost always with that better front end. The advantage to a PCIe interface is in capability.... it is possible for it to pass more data. The advantage to firewire or USB is ease of installation or the ability to use it with a laptop.
What is important to me: solid company, a quality mature product proven in the field (not the newest release form anyone), good support, great drivers, ease of use, and it is nice when the product in question has been built for the long term and will not be replaced in a few months with a newer, shinier offering. This time I picked a PCIe product because I'm not doing remotes anymore. That was also my choice for my studio machines. For remotes, a laptop is darned handy and the USB/firewire/cardbus answers are handier.