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Small Interface Recommendations
Old 21st February 2013
  #1
Gear Maniac
 

Small Interface Recommendations

Hey guys, I am looking to upgrade from my grey/blue 2nd generation Mbox 2 to something with better converters/pres. I work at Guitar Center so I can buy gear there on employee discount if I get something made by one of their vendors. Currently I am running a 4 GB 2.53 GHz i5 Macbook Pro with OS 10.6.4 and Pro Tools 8.0.4 LE and. I also own Rode NT1A and SM57 microphones with Yamaha HS80m monitors. I realize that I am going to have to upgrade to at least Pro Tools 9 LE. I really only need two inputs as I record drums at a commercial studio and I record only guitar and vocals with a microphone on my own rig. I do need outs for headphones and my powered monitors on the interface too. What would you guys recommend? Would an Apogee duet be the way to go? Would the RME Fireface interfaces be overkill for what I am doing? Also, is my computer going to have any issues running PT 9 or 10? Will I still be able to use my external drives using my FireWire 800 jack? I ask because I am already using my two USB sockets. Let me know what you guys recommend. Thanks in advance!
Old 21st February 2013
  #2
Gear Maniac
 

Bump.
Old 21st February 2013
  #3
I recommend the duet, great convertors and pre's. Really clear soundstage for mixing.
I find the software mixer a bit sh1tty and the device seems to like to protect itself by muting the outputs when you turn on or off your monitors or input devices power, but I haven't heard better sound quality on a 2 in / 2 out interface for that price.

Dunno anything about Protools sorry.
The Duet doesnt have an extra firewire connection for daisychaining your drives. If you can use usb for the drives get yourself a powered usb hub. Or alternatively the Duet 2 is Usb.
Old 21st February 2013
  #4
Lives for gear
The Focusrite Scarlett series has been rock-solid and clean conversion for me. I have an 18i6 - it works every time. Will you be upgrading to PT 10?
Old 22nd February 2013
  #5
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pidgeo View Post
I recommend the duet, great convertors and pre's. Really clear soundstage for mixing.
I find the software mixer a bit sh1tty and the device seems to like to protect itself by muting the outputs when you turn on or off your monitors or input devices power, but I haven't heard better sound quality on a 2 in / 2 out interface for that price.

Dunno anything about Protools sorry.
The Duet doesnt have an extra firewire connection for daisychaining your drives. If you can use usb for the drives get yourself a powered usb hub. Or alternatively the Duet 2 is Usb.
Very cool. I've heard only good things about this unit. It might be the way to go. Does anyone have any experience with the RME interfaces?
Old 22nd February 2013
  #6
Here for the gear
 
Mtomlins's Avatar
 

Check out the MOTU Track16 - nice converters, great pre's - lots more I/O and stable drivers.
Old 22nd February 2013
  #7
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrysb93065 View Post
The Focusrite Scarlett series has been rock-solid and clean conversion for me. I have an 18i6 - it works every time. Will you be upgrading to PT 10?
I think that I'll have to upgrade to Pro Tools 10. I'm running PT 8 LE right now and with that version I can only use an Avid interface. To use one from another manufacturer I'll have to upgrade. Do you think the Scarlett will be a noticeable improvement from my 2nd generation Mbox 2?
Old 22nd February 2013
  #8
Lives for gear
 

I would also recommend the Duet 2. I'm running ProTools 10 with the Duet 2 and its been running flawless. The Duet 2 is USB only but if your current interface is USB then that shouldn't be a problem. I run my external hard drive through the FireWire port. So your set up would be USB iLok, USB Duet 2, Firewire external hard drive.
Old 22nd February 2013
  #9
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Given To Fly View Post
I would also recommend the Duet 2. I'm running ProTools 10 with the Duet 2 and its been running flawless. The Duet 2 is USB only but if your current interface is USB then that shouldn't be a problem. I run my external hard drive through the FireWire port. So your set up would be USB iLok, USB Duet 2, Firewire external hard drive.
Good stuff. I have enough of a budget to spend more that I would on the Duet 2 if anyone has any suggestions too. I've have heard a lot of good things about that unit though.
Old 22nd February 2013
  #10
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The Sound Devices USBPre 2 is rarely talked about but if you know anything about Sound Devices it should be pretty darn amazing. Sound Devices USBPre 2 | Sweetwater.com
Old 23rd February 2013
  #11
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Given To Fly View Post
The Sound Devices USBPre 2 is rarely talked about but if you know anything about Sound Devices it should be pretty darn amazing. Sound Devices USBPre 2 | Sweetwater.com
Very cool. That's well within my price range so I'm seriously considering that one. I'd even be willing to spend more than that if it's worth it. I want something really top-notch but I don't want to spend extra money on channels that I won't use. I'm really looking to get something really high quality so that I won't feel the need to upgrade anytime soon.
Old 23rd February 2013
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

Does anyone have any experience with one of these: RME Fireface UCX 36-Channel USB 2.0 Audio Interface | GuitarCenter or anything similar? Also, would RME's Total Mix program eat up a lot of CPU power when running alongside Pro Tools? I ask because I'm already having problems overloading the CPU on my Macbook Pro.
Old 23rd February 2013
  #13
Here for the gear
 

RME

pm'd you
Old 23rd February 2013
  #14
Gear Maniac
 

Anyone have experience with this unit too: https://www.google.com/shopping/prod...d=0CH0Q8wIwBQ?
Old 23rd February 2013
  #15
|-|
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|-|'s Avatar
RME and be done with it. Any interface that suits your needs...

The reliability is key here, TotalMix takes no CPU power.

I've gone through 30-40 interfaces, and will use nothing but RME from this point on.
Old 24th February 2013
  #16
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by |-| View Post
RME and be done with it. Any interface that suits your needs...

The reliability is key here, TotalMix takes no CPU power.

I've gone through 30-40 interfaces, and will use nothing but RME from this point on.
Very cool. I'm probably going to be going for that one.
Old 25th February 2013
  #17
Gear Maniac
I absolutely love my Metric Halo ULN2. The onboard summing and DSP is incredible and you'll never outgrow the pres. They're first class. I compared it to an Apogee Ensemble, Apogee Duet, RME Fireface and UA Apollo.

At that level it gets different, not better. I liked the sound and functionality of the ULN2 for my purposes the most. I go into a studio to do drums like you so 2 in is enough.

Last edited by guitar4982; 25th February 2013 at 01:58 AM.. Reason: reword
Old 25th February 2013
  #18
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cbdrummer44 View Post
I absolutely love my Metric Halo ULN2. The onboard summing and DSP is incredible and you'll never outgrow the pres. They're first class. I compared it to an Apogee Ensemble, Apogee Duet, RME Fireface and UA Apollo.

At that level it gets different, not better. I liked the sound and functionality of the ULN2 for my purposes the most. I go into a studio to do drums like you so 2 in is enough.
I can't get that one on employee discount unfortunately. GC doesn't sell Metric Halo gear. You the the RME is of similar quality then huh?
Old 25th February 2013
  #19
Gear Maniac
 

You'd be supprised at what GC can get. I used to work there and just called up manufacturers and asked if they had an account with us. 90% of the ones I didn't think I could get, I could.
Old 25th February 2013
  #20
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackdc100 View Post
I can't get that one on employee discount unfortunately. GC doesn't sell Metric Halo gear. You the the RME is of similar quality then huh?
Similar but it definitely doesn't sound the same. Getting pro results on one means you can get pro results on both.

I could talk for days about why I reckon MH is better cos of the onboard DSP but honestly RME and Apogee will do the job.
Old 26th February 2013
  #21
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cbdrummer44 View Post
Similar but it definitely doesn't sound the same. Getting pro results on one means you can get pro results on both.

I could talk for days about why I reckon MH is better cos of the onboard DSP but honestly RME and Apogee will do the job.
Gotcha.
Old 26th February 2013
  #22
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HKD126 View Post
You'd be supprised at what GC can get. I used to work there and just called up manufacturers and asked if they had an account with us. 90% of the ones I didn't think I could get, I could.
I'll check into that. I was told that we could only purchase equipment on the GC website but maybe I need to look into it myself. Thanks for the info guys.
Old 26th February 2013
  #23
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackdc100 View Post
I can't get that one on employee discount unfortunately. GC doesn't sell Metric Halo gear. You the the RME is of similar quality then huh?
How do the converters/pres in the Apogee duet compare to those in the Ensemble?
Old 27th February 2013
  #24
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackdc100 View Post
How do the converters/pres in the Apogee duet compare to those in the Ensemble?
Ensemble is now obsolete but the converters were a generation older.

Even then though, you're comparing Granny Smith with Red Delicious apples. They're both tasty red apples
Old 27th February 2013
  #25
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cbdrummer44 View Post
Ensemble is now obsolete but the converters were a generation older.

Even then though, you're comparing Granny Smith with Red Delicious apples. They're both tasty red apples
So the converters actually superior in the Duet 2? Sorry if I'm a bit of a noob.....just curious and trying to get an idea of how to get the most for my money considering I only really use 2 mic pres.
Old 27th February 2013
  #26
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackdc100 View Post
I'll check into that. I was told that we could only purchase equipment on the GC website but maybe I need to look into it myself. Thanks for the info guys.
Thats not true one bit. I ordered API, Vintech, Coleman, Aurora, GML, etc etc from GC when I worked there. You can also order anything stocked by Musicians Friend. But honestly, don't listen to your SM or Audio DM's or any of your audio dept. people. They don't know anything. All you have to do is contact the manufacturer you are looking to buy something from, ask if they have an account with GC or will do a sale through them and ask what the price is for GC on the piece of gear. Step 2. Contact your regional manager and ask to approve the employee purchase. Step 3. Go to your store manager and say you've already gone through all the necessary hoops and give them all the info. If they approve it ask them to do the 21 or 22 SPO ticket for you and away you go.
Old 27th February 2013
  #27
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by cbdrummer44 View Post
Even then though, you're comparing Granny Smith with Red Delicious apples. They're both tasty red apples
This is completely false. Granny Smith apples are not red. Geez!

Frank
Old 27th February 2013
  #28
Lives for gear
 
TurboJets's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Given To Fly View Post
The Sound Devices USBPre 2 is rarely talked about but if you know anything about Sound Devices it should be pretty darn amazing. Sound Devices USBPre 2 | Sweetwater.com
The USBPre2 is pretty fantastic. Quality conversion with excellent analog stages that are on par with RME and BLA to my ears.

The preamps on that box are also very nice.

Pretty ruggedly built, small footprint, will hold its resale value if you ever decide to sell it.

Worth every penny you pay for it.
Old 28th February 2013
  #29
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboJets View Post
The USBPre2 is pretty fantastic. Quality conversion with excellent analog stages that are on par with RME and BLA to my ears.

The preamps on that box are also very nice.

Pretty ruggedly built, small footprint, will hold its resale value if you ever decide to sell it.

Worth every penny you pay for it.
No brainer - the USBPre2 rocks.
Old 2nd March 2013
  #30
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HKD126 View Post
Thats not true one bit. I ordered API, Vintech, Coleman, Aurora, GML, etc etc from GC when I worked there. You can also order anything stocked by Musicians Friend. But honestly, don't listen to your SM or Audio DM's or any of your audio dept. people. They don't know anything. All you have to do is contact the manufacturer you are looking to buy something from, ask if they have an account with GC or will do a sale through them and ask what the price is for GC on the piece of gear. Step 2. Contact your regional manager and ask to approve the employee purchase. Step 3. Go to your store manager and say you've already gone through all the necessary hoops and give them all the info. If they approve it ask them to do the 21 or 22 SPO ticket for you and away you go.
Cool Thanks for the advice!
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