Which Interface ONLY do I really need? Do I need to upgrade?

lifeson1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,242
I'm recording virtually with a band, as well as trying to create stock content. Pretty much running my Fractal FM3 into a Scarlett 2i2 to record to logic - I don't really need any plugins. I just want the most decent interface into my MacBook Pro that I can get for the money. I also run Synths, Bass, and Vox (not at all the same time).

I was looking at the Apollo Duo X , but am I paying for better sound quality, or better plugins? Or would I be better at looking at another model to just get the best sound?

I know, I sound confused - and I am. Still a novice on the digital recording side. Any clarity appreciated!!!!
 

Fireproof

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
4,372
I don’t know what problem you are trying to solve. Because you already have 2 interfaces…

1) you can use your FM3 as an interface straight into your MBP.
2) you can go FM3 into the 2i2 into your MBP (as it sounds like you are already doing).

So what are you not happy with?
 

lifeson1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,242
I don’t know what problem you are trying to solve. Because you already have 2 interfaces…

1) you can use your FM3 as an interface straight into your MBP.
2) you can go FM3 into the 2i2 into your MBP (as it sounds like you are already doing).

So what are you not happy with?

I'm just trying to improve the overall audio quality of the recording. I have heard the Scarlett is 'ok', but the Apollo may have better pre amps for guitars. But that may just pertain to running direct, instead of my situation.

Again, I could be off. The Scarlett isn't bad, and for my environment it may be fine.

Through the monitors, it sounds pretty good, I wouldn't say it's A+ studio quality, but that could all be on me.

I have never run the FM3 straight in, it's always been using the audio outs on the FM3, so I can also just practice with it though the monitors. Curious, I'll try it direct to see if there's a difference.
 

thomasjg

Member
Messages
300
Which monitors are you using? This is, IMO, where I would spend money (after treating the room). The preamps and the converters in the Scarlett are plenty good enough to get great recordings. If the number of inputs/preamps works with what you are doing, then I think you are OK.
 

lifeson1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,242
Using PreSonus, which are pretty good. But you are right, I should be soundctreating the space better. It is my basement.
 

thomasjg

Member
Messages
300
Persons Eris and Sceptres are really good in my opinion. Sound treatment is the first thing I would do, if I wanted to use the room as a recording/listening space. If you want to save money, Rockwool Safe N Sound is great and goes a long way. Just stay away from foam.
 

SwirlyMaple

Member
Messages
1,396
I'm just trying to improve the overall audio quality of the recording. I have heard the Scarlett is 'ok', but the Apollo may have better pre amps for guitars.
Connecting your FM3 via USB and skipping the Scarlett altogether will give you quality as good as you’re going to get. If something seems off even with that setup, it’s an issue with something else that a new interface won’t fix. FWIW, when you run a modeler into another interface like the Scarlett to get the sound into your computer, you’re adding an extra conversion from digital to analog and then one more from analog back to digital. You also might be raising the noise floor and decreasing dynamic range if the A/D converters in your interface aren’t as good as the FM3’s.

Unless you have a really pressing reason to use a separate interface, keeping it in the digital domain by going direct from your modeler is the best option for preserving audio fidelity.
 

DaveDaveDave

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
712
I really dig my UAD Apollo Twin. Prior to that I had an RME UFX, and I much prefer the preamps in the Apollo - but that has a LOT to do with their plugins that actually run on device.

I'll second the suggestions that you should use the Axe FX III as your interface when recording guitar. This way you can avoid extra ADAC steps and minimize latency. On Mac it's really easy to set up an "Aggregate Audio Device", so you can have the inputs of all your interfaces available at the same time.

Cheers!
 

lifeson1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,242
Thanks, guys! I really appreciate everyone’s input. I do need to sound treat, which is what I think I will be spending some funds in. Thanks so much.
 

fancysalmon

Member
Messages
393
Pretty much running my Fractal FM3 into a Scarlett 2i2 to record to logic - I don't really need any plugins

So... why do you need another interface? You're not going to get any better sound quality, modern audio interfaces are extremely good, even really cheap ones. You should improve the weakest link in the chain. Look into sound treatment, or perhaps better monitors if you don't have any or are using ultra budget ones. You should consider a new interface if you want more channels, and/or more pres, if you want better low latency operation, or if you want certain features like on-board DSP or ADAT input for future expansion.

you’re adding an extra conversion from digital to analog

It's really meaningless though, unless you're running the conversion step dozens and dozens of times, A single conversion is completely transparent (or even a few ones).

You also might be raising the noise floor and decreasing dynamic range if the A/D converters in your interface aren’t as good as the FM3’s.

Also not something to worry about at all, the noise coming from the amp model itself eclipses the noise floor of the converters. Scarlett's line inputs are rated at 110db, that's super super low.
 

JasonE

Member
Messages
715
I'm recording virtually with a band, as well as trying to create stock content. Pretty much running my Fractal FM3 into a Scarlett 2i2 to record to logic - I don't really need any plugins. I just want the most decent interface into my MacBook Pro that I can get for the money. I also run Synths, Bass, and Vox (not at all the same time).

I was looking at the Apollo Duo X , but am I paying for better sound quality, or better plugins? Or would I be better at looking at another model to just get the best sound?

I know, I sound confused - and I am. Still a novice on the digital recording side. Any clarity appreciated!!!!

I am not sure what your budget is but I bought one of these last month and can't say enough good stuff about it.

 




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