PreSonus Quantum by CanadaSC1
"Latency" and "Stability" are kind of "buzz-words" in the audio world, but genuinely they are buzz-killers in the recording studio. Not literally audible "buzz", but the warm fuzzy feelings (buzz) when you have a mix sounding great in the DAW but you want to record something (or punch in and record something again for a better take). This is when latency rears its ugly head and kills the buzz, or instability causes crashes or drop-outs.
I've used tape and analog consoles, Pro Tools HDX systems, cheap interfaces, etc. and the best performances always seem to come when things feel real and live to the performers. Latency seems to make things feel artificial to the performers and that's what kills the buzz. Round-trip-latency (RTL, or the time it takes for the performers to play a note, get captured by the DAW, and get sent back to the performers headphones) is the critical thing here. If this RTL number (usually calculated in milliseconds, or "ms") is too high, it disconnects the performer from their performance. And that is not good!
When I moved to a PreSonus Quantum / Studio One Pro rig on a decently powerful computer, latency numbers went down significantly from the old cheap audio interfaces. In fact, latency with this approx. $1500 rig was on par with with the aforementioned Pro Tools HDX kit that was well over 10x the price. And HDX is "the best in the industry" for latency in a digital recording system.
And stability of the PreSonus rig is incredible too. Having tracked (recorded) hundreds of songs over the past few years, I have yet to have the PreSonus Quantum crash or interrupt a recording session. And that leads me to my point about stability. If you cannot depend on your recording system to reliably capture the performance, that is not good! Thankfully the PreSonus Quantum is incredibly stable with newer drivers. Be sure to update your drivers!
Lastly, I'd like to comment on audio quality. Most mics require a mic preamp to be recorded properly. And I must say I don't recommend using the preamps on the PreSonus Quantum. Just grab some quality outboard preamps and connect them to the 1/4" TRS line-in connectors on the Quantum and enjoy good sounds. I personally use Manley preamps, but preamps are to taste... I find the Quantum preamps to sound harsh and digital, so that's why I recommend quality outboard preamps.
To summarize my review, I can honestly say that the combo of a PreSonus Quantum and PreSonus Studio One Pro is an excellent way to arrive at a recording system that enables the performers to show up, play their instruments, hear themselves naturally through headphones (minimal latency), and produce epic music, all day long (no stability issues). That's what it is all about. Now go make some music!