Thread: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

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  1. #1
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    Default Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    So, my 18 year old nephew asked me the other day what was an inexpensive starter audio interface for him to experiment with recording. Totally a newb question, but I just don't pay much attention to recording technology right now, and I have no idea what to recommend to him. He's a talented kid, rapidly progressing on guitar and a really great singer, so I'd like to encourage him as much as possible, but he is flat out broke, so it can't be too expensive.

    Any hints?


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  2. #2
    President of local Trekkie club. Ambidextrous Onanist
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    I never had any problems with my Focusrite 2i2. Those can be had used for $75-100 all day. You'll see Musicians Friend and Guitar Center do sales on them new for $99 sometimes.
    Partner that with the personal license of Reaper ($60 I think) and you've got a fully functional DAW and interface for less than $200.

    I haven't used the Presounus equivalent, the AudioBox, but I'm guessing it basically the same. The upside to that one is it might come with some flavor of Studio One. A popular DAW option these days. My guess is it will be a limited version though.

    Those are some cheap consumer things I've seen. Others might be able to give you better options for used, but better quality, interfaces.

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    I never had any problems with my Focusrite 2i2. Those can be had used for $75-100 all day. You'll see Musicians Friend and Guitar Center do sales on them new for $99 sometimes.
    Partner that with the personal license of Reaper ($60 I think) and you've got a fully functional DAW and interface for less than $200.

    I haven't used the Presounus equivalent, the AudioBox, but I'm guessing it basically the same. The upside to that one is it might come with some flavor of Studio One. A popular DAW option these days. My guess is it will be a limited version though.

    Those are some cheap consumer things I've seen. Others might be able to give you better options for used, but better quality, interfaces.

    -r
    A confession - I've been hanging out in the guitar forum at Purpledom a bit recently. The reason I mention this is that several people have been having problems with the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2, ranging from bad RFI off the USB line being picked up by guitars and amps to inadequately designed instrument inputs.

    I would avoid the Focusrite like the plague. There's probably good reason they're getting blown out cheap.

    Dunno about Presonus. I had quite bad experience with a couple of their cheap interfaces a few years ago but have heard nothing recent either way.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    A confession - I've been hanging out in the guitar forum at Purpledom a bit recently. The reason I mention this is that several people have been having problems with the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2, ranging from bad RFI off the USB line being picked up by guitars and amps to inadequately designed instrument inputs.

    I would avoid the Focusrite like the plague. There's probably good reason they're getting blown out cheap.

    Dunno about Presonus. I had quite bad experience with a couple of their cheap interfaces a few years ago but have heard nothing recent either way.
    I've got a 2i2 and it's fine. The instrument input having too much gain problem was the 1st gen models (something to do with cheap combo sockets), and you can easily remedy that by setting the inout at mic level through a pedal on bypass (as long as it's not true bypass - but you know that, Gabriel, you're a guitar guy).

    Never heard about RFI problems with them, and I've never encountered that. I'd be more suspicious of the pickups and PC PSU to be honest.
  5. #5
    President of local Trekkie club. Ambidextrous Onanist
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    I wouldn't be surprised if some(large) percent of them were hot piles of poo. But then again it's a hundred bucks. I can't get Taylor Swift tickets that cheap.

    I started to look around for other options... but honestly, I'd still just find something low end. Buy it new and you can return it if it completely craps out.

    To move up from the Focusrite/Presounus level of 2 channel stuff, you go from $150 new to $600 for a MOTU device, $750 for an RME Babyface and $900 for a UA Apollo Twin. Maybe those become more reasonable options for him in the used market. But really, how much does he gain in his situation? *Granted I don't know anything other than he's broke and 18*

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  6. #6
    Most friends are "on the inside". Skank Muffin
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    Why not just browse a used classified site (craigslist, kijiji, etc)? Just takes a bit of research on his part and a bit of time trolling through ads, but there's lots of good stuff.

    Recently bought a few used items that were in near perfect cosmetic condition, and worked flawlessly. One of which was close to $3500 can brand new, and got it for $400, simply because he just didn't have any use for it.

    Especially if its his first interface, I don't see anything wrong with going with a used piece of gear.
  7. #7
    Little River Band on The Run Internet Meme
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    A second hand Steinberg UR22 with a copy of Cubase AI (included) should be pretty cheap by now.
  8. #8
    Has Many Personal Intergritys Expensive Boat Anchor
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    I'd probably suggest this:

    https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/ID4
  9. #9
    Most friends are "on the inside". Skank Muffin
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    Yeah, the Audient stuff is great! Saw one of these on the used table at a l&m recently for like $100 can. If he can't afford that, maybe one of those tascam portastudios?
  10. #10
    London Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft Space Station pet
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    Thanks everyone. I've been busy, so I haven't been back to check, but those look like some good recommendations.

    Gabriel


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  11. #11
    Large dairy air enthusiast Runs a 4.35 forty...yeah right!
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    Default Re: Sorry, sorry, I know, I'm sorry....

    Yeah those focusrites seem to be everywhere.

    I've heard noncomplaints such as what John Epstein mentioned


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