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M-Audio Fast track c400

M-Audio Fast track c400

3.4 3.4 out of 5, based on 2 Reviews


3 weeks ago

M-Audio Fast track c400 by MusicArch12

  • Sound Quality 2 out of 5
  • Ease of use 1 out of 5
  • Features 3 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 1 out of 5
  • Overall: 1.75
M-Audio Fast track c400

I bought Used FastTrack C400 as my first sound card. As a sound card, it worked pretty well, however it was pain to use due to its drivers.

The sound card required its own drivers.

On Windows 7 and 8, there was ocassionaly not sound at the input, it was fixed with reinstallation of the driver. Also, one had to use "Safely remove device" feature on Windows before disconnecting it (used it with notebook) because otherwise bad things happened (blue screen of death, or immediate restart - even on Windows 8).

On mac, driver stability was better, although I needed to reinstall drivers several times as well. Also, the drivers did not work for newer versions of Mac os and sometimes it took Avid 4 months to release drivers for current macOS version.

The interface had also quite short official support lifespan (till 2015 or something), which made it unusable in newer OSes as it required its specific drivers.

For me, it was lesson learned and I'd only buy interface that is class compliant or from a manufacturer that has good driver support (as RME seems to have).

It is a shame that there were such problems as I quite liked the interface otherwise. It was just so depressing having to spend about 30 minutes figuring out why the sound does not go in just to figure out that reinstallation of the drivers makes it work.

When acquiring later Tascam US-4x4 as replacement, I noticed that the sound of FastTrack C400 was somehow "blurry" in comparison. Tascam IMO makes everything sound a bit bright, but the reaction to sound dynamics on Tascam is way better - even with untrained ears, I could hear compressors working in some recording (attacks got clearly through).

Additionally, C400 did not have great input sound range. With Korg M50, it was necessary to watch out for clipping on the input side. This is something that has never been issue with Tascam US-4x4 where even on full Korg's output volume it is able to handle the signal without any distortion (red light).

Pros:

  • big volume knob
  • big bright LED meters
  • good selection of inputs and outputs

Cons:
  • driver reliability
  • short lifespan due to drivers
  • blurry sound in comparison to Tascam US-4x4
  • low dynamic range for recording

EDIT: Lowered scores, it averaged too high.

 
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