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Focusrite Scarlett 18i20
Old 8th April 2013
  #1
Focusrite Scarlett 18i20

So I bought one since I flat out love my Saffire 40. I figured it'd be nice to be ahead of the curve (re-sale wise) so I grabbed one.

The good:
  • Looks GREAT
  • Functionally identical to the Pro 40
  • No Manual or Software in the box - all easily downloaded

I'm running mine on a Mac Pro, 10.7.5 with Live 8.

The bad:
  • Midi not working
  • Audio is hit or miss
  • In general drivers don't seem ready at all
  • Slight bit more hiss on the main 1-2 out. (I may be imagining this)

Anyone else have one of these?
What are your findings?
Old 8th April 2013
  #2
Lives for gear
 

I ordered one from Sweetwater but they still don't have them in stock. I hope this is just a bad unit you got. Have you tried contacting MF to return it? You said sound was hit or miss, when you did have it how did it compare to your Saffire 40? I sold my Motu ultralite MK3 hybrid to get this and I hope I didn't make a big mistake giving up sound quality.
Old 8th April 2013
  #3
I just did a return/exchange to rule out the drivers.
I called Focusrite and they (as always) were really helpful. He said they have heard no negative reports on these yet. Granted they're a new product so...

As far as audio quality, by all means it sounded exactly like my Pro 40. Which I must say is a great sound. I think the Focusrite boxes in general are quite a bit nicer in this range.
The Saffire 40 was/is bullet-proof.

I'm really thinking it was a bad unit. Not sure though.
Old 9th April 2013
  #4
Lives for gear
 

That's good you returned it. I hope the next one is working properly for you. I agree the Focusrite has great sound quality for the amount it cost. I have a friend who I turned onto the 2i4 last year and I think it has better sound than the Motu Ultralite I had that cost $600. I hope I don't have any issues with mine when it finally arrives in May. Keep us updated.
Old 9th April 2013 | Show parent
  #5
Focusrite
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by analogcabin View Post
I just did a return/exchange to rule out the drivers.
I called Focusrite and they (as always) were really helpful. He said they have heard no negative reports on these yet. Granted they're a new product so...

As far as audio quality, by all means it sounded exactly like my Pro 40. Which I must say is a great sound. I think the Focusrite boxes in general are quite a bit nicer in this range.
The Saffire 40 was/is bullet-proof.

I'm really thinking it was a bad unit. Not sure though.
Did you manage to get your issues resolved? If not, please get in touch with the support team and we'll gladly assist further.

Chris
Focusrite Support
Old 9th April 2013 | Show parent
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Focusrite View Post
Did you manage to get your issues resolved? If not, please get in touch with the support team and we'll gladly assist further.

Chris
Focusrite Support
We could not resolve it over the phone.
I sent the unit back and I'm thinking I might try again with another 18i20 to see whether it was the box or the drivers.

Thanks!
Old 9th April 2013
  #7
Quote:
Originally Posted by analogcabin View Post
The bad:
  • Audio is hit or miss
  • In general drivers don't seem ready at all
It would be interesting if you could elaborate on the issues you are having.
Old 9th April 2013
  #8
The audio kept switching back to "default" Mac Pro internal speakers or no audio would pass. Not even through headphones.

The reason I originally said drivers might be the culprit is because the midi (using with a Mackie Control Surface) would work and then lose connection.

I plugged my older Saffire 6 (USB) back in and it's rock solid.
I know it'll get figured out.
Old 10th April 2013
  #9
Focusrite
 

Support is something we take very seriously and we'll always persevere with any issues until they're solved.

We'd be more than happy to help you out further if you're still experiencing problems.

Chris
Focusrite Support
Old 10th April 2013
  #10
PM sent Chris.

Thanks!
Old 10th April 2013
  #11
Lives for gear
 
valis's Avatar
Sounds more like a bad cable or possibly bad controller chip for the host connection (FireWire I suppose?)
Old 10th April 2013 | Show parent
  #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by valis View Post
Sounds more like a bad cable or possibly bad controller chip for the host connection (FireWire I suppose?)
Cable is good.
USB in this case (not FW)
Old 11th April 2013
  #13
Lives for gear
 

I was just checking out some videos on this on YouTube. There is a comment up there saying that we can only record 4 channels out of the 8 total channels, is this true? The person said we would have to spend $400 more to buy Protools or something else to use all 8 channels. He is using windows 7 and I am to with Sonar X1 Producer not sure what DAW he is using. I need to know ASAP as I preordered one and don't want it if I can't record all 8 channels at once.
Old 11th April 2013
  #14
Lives for gear
 

I watched some more videos and he further explained that it was only 4 channels with the albeton software that comes with it. He did say it won't work with some other daws as well. Anyone else got one of these yet? What DAW are you using it with? I am on a Windows 7 64 bit system, using Sonar X1 Producer. I'll be going to Sonar X2 Producer over the summer.
Old 12th April 2013
  #15
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Kaoz's Avatar
That guy must be an idiot.

You can use this with any DAW you want, and out of the box you can record 8 channels.

Trust the devs, not random youtube guy.
Old 12th April 2013 | Show parent
  #16
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaoz View Post
That guy must be an idiot.

You can use this with any DAW you want, and out of the box you can record 8 channels.

Trust the devs, not random youtube guy.
I was thinking the samething myself lol.
Old 13th April 2013
  #17
Gear Addict
 
Goddard's Avatar
 

Something I noticed with the 18i20 is that Focusrite seem to have limited the capability of the ADAT I/O (and Mixcontrol) so that it is not possible to also use it for optical S/PDIF as is possible with thrie FW models, and also, no S/PDIF passthrough mode.
Old 13th April 2013 | Show parent
  #18
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goddard View Post
Something I noticed with the 18i20 is that Focusrite seem to have limited the capability of the ADAT I/O (and Mixcontrol) so that it is not possible to also use it for optical S/PDIF as is possible with thrie FW models, and also, no S/PDIF passthrough mode.
I haven't got mine in the mail yet so I can't test it to see what can be done.
Old 13th April 2013
  #19
Lives for gear
We couldn't update the firmware in Win 7 32, it also lost connection from time to time and it's a USB Bus hog. We wen't RME instead and no more problems out of the box.
Old 13th April 2013 | Show parent
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alndln View Post
We couldn't update the firmware in Win 7 32, it also lost connection from time to time and it's a USB Bus hog. We wen't RME instead and no more problems out of the box.
How long did you have it?
Old 16th April 2013 | Show parent
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melodicmusic View Post
How long did you have it?
About 3 months or so.
Old 16th April 2013 | Show parent
  #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alndln View Post
About 3 months or so.
Correct me if I'm wrong but you are talking about the 18i20? reason I asked is because it just started shipping a couple weeks ago.
Old 17th April 2013
  #23
Lives for gear
 

I saw the 18i20 at Namm and also didn't think it was yet shipping. If it is out there, how's it working for win7-8 users so far?

I'm still trying to figure out why there's a wordclock out on the 18i20... but no wordclock in. How are you supposed to sync this as a slave in a multi-interface setup?

My guess is focusrite will say that the only way to slave the unit is with incoming adat sync. But I've heard no info on that yet.
Old 17th April 2013 | Show parent
  #24
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Melodicmusic View Post
Correct me if I'm wrong but you are talking about the 18i20? reason I asked is because it just started shipping a couple weeks ago.
My error, it was the 18i6. We also had the EMU 1820 so I guess I was temporarily confused. Anyway, my opinions on the 18i6 still stand. Sorry for any confusion.
Old 17th April 2013 | Show parent
  #25
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alndln View Post
My error, it was the 18i6. We also had the EMU 1820 so I guess I was temporarily confused. Anyway, my opinions on the 18i6 still stand. Sorry for any confusion.
No prob.
Old 17th April 2013
  #26
Lives for gear
 

FedEx just dropped mine off. Looks really nice and has good weight to it. Ill post a review of my thoughts in a week or so.
Old 17th April 2013 | Show parent
  #27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Melodicmusic View Post
FedEx just dropped mine off. Looks really nice and has good weight to it. Ill post a review of my thoughts in a week or so.
Please tell us what OS you're using and what DAW.

Congrats!
Old 17th April 2013
  #28
Here for the gear
 

Here is my review
Hello everybody. I just got my 18i20 yesterday. Guitar center just recieved it. It came really nicely packaged....It looks and feels quality built. I hooked it up and started using it last night....Its AWESOME....It has a really warm clear sound to it. Im running it on WINDOWS 7 ULTIMATE 32bit. No driver problems or anything except it does not come with a installation disc. You have to download them from there website. I JUST HAD THE SCARLETT 18I6 and returned it to purchase this unit. The SCARLETT 18i6 had a sharp clear sound. Dont get me wrong the 18i6 had a great sound also but there is a clear difference between the two. I am running my KORG TRINITY V3 THROUGH IT AND ALL IS WELL. I also loaded up a couple of sessions in cubase SX3 and VST'S ARE WORKING AND SOUNDING GREAT with my TRINITY as the controller. I have the Focusrite ISA ONE coupled with a bluebird mic but have not yet had a chance to test it yet. The USB cable is really short.... I probably need to get a longer one (ANY RECOMMENDATIONS) it would be much appreciated. The reason I ask is because it is a ferrite cable. Overall it is a great unit.
Attached Thumbnails
Focusrite Scarlett 18i20-img_1217.jpg  
Old 17th April 2013
  #29
Lives for gear
 

Now, the only question is why there's only a wordclock out. At least, that's my question.
Old 18th April 2013 | Show parent
  #30
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by analogcabin View Post
Please tell us what OS you're using and what DAW.

Congrats!
Thanks! I am using it with Windows 7 64 bit, Sonar X1 Producer is my DAW.
I will be upgrading to Windows 8 64 bit once they get it under control, it is horrible right now. Soon will be using Sonar X2 Producer.
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