Please, tell me about USB soundcards.

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by Porkchop Xpress, Nov 27, 2005.


  1. Porkchop Xpress

    Porkchop Xpress Member

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    I am currently recording on my Sony Vaio laptop. I use the Vox Tonelab SE for a lot of my tracks, sometimes I mic my amps and guitars and sometimes I direct record from my Mesa Boogie Mk IV.
    The problem I have is the fact that I only have one mic line in. There is no actual "line in" so I get a lot of unwanted noise even at lower levels.
    Do any of you know of any outboard soundcards that use USB 2.0 or firewire? I would really like to get a new interface. Thanks.

    Dave
     
  2. JamesNylen

    JamesNylen Member

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    If you have the ability to go firewire...I would definitly go with it.
    But, you can get away with USB and get some pretty good recordings out of it for sure.

    Whats your price range?

    Theres plenty of good options to go with for both
    Firewire:
    M-audio Firewire solo($200)4 inputs,2outs
    M-audio firewire 410($300)4 inputs,8outs
    Focusrite saffire($400)2 xlr inputs, 8 out TRS
    M-audio mbox 2($549 with factory bundle and
    ProtoolsLe) 2 inputs,2 outs

    USB:
    M-audio fasttrack USB($100)2 inputs, 2 outs
    M-audio Mobilepre USB($150)5 inputs,3outs
    Tascam us-122($200)6 inputs,3 outputs
    Alesis 10/2($200)4 inputs,2 outs (24bit/96khz usb)
    Lexicon Omega studio($300)4 inputs,2 outs(24bit/48khz)
    Makie spike($400)2inputs,2 outs (24 bit/96khz usb)
     
  3. Porkchop Xpress

    Porkchop Xpress Member

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    Wow, great reply! Thanks for the info. I have both Firewire and USB 2.0 so that isn't an issue. Are these soundcards or just interface units? I'm just curious about the effect it will have on my RAM because I am currently running at 512Mb. Thanks again.
     
  4. JamesNylen

    JamesNylen Member

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    Interface units.
    I currently run 256mb ram and have no problem with the M-audio fasttrack. On the others I think you should be fine but dont qoute me on that.....

    If worse comes to worse what does it cost to upgrade another 512mb? arnt the cards like really cheap now?I know ive seen them for like $50 or $60 bucks.:)
     
  5. thesedaze

    thesedaze Member

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    Definately go for Firewire if you can. The USB units I've worked with don't seem to be as trusty in those valuable times...

    I'd recommend AGAINST the M-Audio units. The drivers aren't all that reliable.

    the Focusrite saffire is a little inflated in price for what it is...

    Look into the Presonus Firebox and/or Firepod depending on how many simultaneous tracks you plan on doing.
     
  6. marinblues

    marinblues Member

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    I use a Tascam US122 and I've never had any issues with it.
     
  7. 2x6L6

    2x6L6 Supporting Member

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  8. Sofus

    Sofus Member

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    I am using a cheap Novation X-Station, works like charm for my hobbiest uses. The advantage is the small keyboard and the synth and soft-synth that comes with it, that both are of high quality.
     
  9. A440

    A440 Supporting Member

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    just wanted to note that mbox is actually USB, not firewire

    I'll throw another into the mix that I'm considering for my laptop:

    EMU 1616 or 1616M

    it actually plugs into your PCMCIA port on your laptop. this is supposed to be faster than both USB and Firewire. the EMU bundle of software also looks pretty cool, but is a bit more $ than many of the USB or Firewire options :)

    http://www.emu.com/products/product.asp?category=505&subcategory=491&product=13554
     
  10. Norcal_GIT_r

    Norcal_GIT_r Member

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    The Mbox 2 that I use at home is a great unit and has been more reliable than the digi 002r that I have at my studio.
     

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