Akai EIE Pro
4 XLR/TRS Inputs
4 TRS Inserts
4 TRS Outputs
2 VU Meters
24-bit, 44.1 kHz/48 kHz/88.2 kHz/96 kHz
48V Phantom Power
Few interfaces in this price range offer as many features as the EIE Pro, not to mention the inclusion of VU meters. LED backlighting turn red when the signal peaks, making it easy to properly stage the gain. Additionally, depending on your needs, the input or output of either channels 1/2 or channels 3/4 may be selected for display.
The build and quality on the EIE Pro is astounding. The unit itself is heavy and sturdy and sits nice on any workstation. Because of the EIE Pro's low latency, EQ, compression, and reverb may be applied for monitoring while tracking. This helps musicians have a better feel of what the final mix will sound like while still recording the signal dry for later post-processing.
The preamps are clean and offer plenty of gain for both condenser and ribbon microphones with the included phantom power. If you wish to add a bit more of color or warmth, you may affectively by-pass the preamps altogether by inputing the signal from your favorite preamps (or any outboard gear for that manner) at line level. One of the best features of the EIE Pro, not often found in this price range, are the inclusion of 4 inserts for outboard gear in addition to the 4 inputs and 4 outputs.
You'd be hard pressed to find another interface in this price range which outperforms the EIE Pro or offers more features. Therefore, I highly recommend the EIE Pro for any studio and easily give it 5 stars.