Focusrite Scarlett 18i6 by Anthony Duran
I had been searching for an interface for quite some time. I am not "fulltime" in the business yet, and my budget was less than ideal. (as in most cases I'm guessing)
But I knew that in my project studio signal path, the interface was an area that needed attention quickly, so I set out to find reviews, ask friends, and look for anything I hadn't seen yet.
I came across quite a bit in the $500 & under range, & though I really wanted an RME because of good reviews, the $750 entry level was definitely out of my budget for a while. I came across the Focusrite 18i6 from browsing the web, and after reading the specs and comparing them to other interfaces I was eager to try it out.
I have had it for a little over four months now and have definitely put it through the fire. I've used it on everything from location recording, to MIDI control with my DAW, to Direct inputs from guitars in my studio.
It has been a beast. Rugged for travel. Knobs feel great. The price per feature is way beyond interfaces in a similar price range with 8 channels of ADAT lightpipe input, SPDIF in and out, and not to mention I couldn't be happier with the Pre's. (Surprised that even the RME Babyface was only either ADAT OR SPDIF, not both like the 18i6)
Now if you are a firewire person, you should know this runs USB 2.0.
It has handled all my tracks with no dropouts, extremely low latency, and seemless integration with my DAW (it comes with a 18x6 mix software that can be used when the unit is operating standalone as well)
So all in all I am NOT saying this is BETTER then a well spent $1000, however, I don't give 10s to anybody, and can honestly rate this interface a 9 with no hesitations in the overall bang for buck.
And if you're like me and aren't quite to the place of spending around 1k or more, but still need "good" quality in the mean time... then this is the perfect "next step" towards that professional signal path, and a interface for you to Seriously consider.