advice on buying some new hear (interface, preamp etc)
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Old 24-09-2011, 05:46 AM   #1
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advice on buying some new hear (interface, preamp etc)

I am really thinking about making my overall workstation a bit better. I currently have a mac book pro with an akai mpk 49, ikey monitors and a Tascam us122l usb interface. I am really thinking that the interface is resulting in some sort of quality loss. I dont know if its the long usb cable or the interface itself but I can hear a loss in quality when I listen to headphones through the interface when compared to plugging them directly into the computer. Is this possible? do cheaper interfaces = cheaper quality, or is it the cable issue?

What I want is to be able to record into the computer using a condenser mic, my guitar and also be able to sample vinyl from a record table. Is the correct gear for these uses: a better usb interface and a preamp? Can anyone recommend good models and brands I could check out?

Thanks

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Old 24-09-2011, 03:07 PM   #2
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Re: advice on buying some new hear (interface, preamp etc)

By plugging your headphones directly into your computer, you mean using the built-in soundcard of your motherboard? If that is so, and you really think it sounds better in quality then you certainly have a problem with your tascam audio interface.
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Old 24-09-2011, 04:17 PM   #3
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Re: advice on buying some new hear (interface, preamp etc)

Motu.

Edit: And the length of the cable doesn't have anything to do with quality or the loss of.

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Old 25-09-2011, 12:10 AM   #4
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Re: advice on buying some new hear (interface, preamp etc)

I also agree that Motu interfaces not only sound good and have several useful features, but their drivers are rock solid. In addition, they come equipped with both Firewire and USB connectors, which gives you the choice of how you want to connect them to your computer if you have both types. As for other USB interfaces, both Focusrite and PreSonus make excellent audio interfaces with high-quality convertors and preamps. They are also very reasonably priced. Since you're using a Mac, I would encourage you to look at the Apogee Duet 2. But considering it only features 2 in and 4 outs, you wouldn't have enough ins to meet your requirements.(Bummer)
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Old 25-09-2011, 01:49 AM   #5
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Re: advice on buying some new hear (interface, preamp etc)

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Originally Posted by KymaFreq View Post
I also agree that Motu interfaces not only sound good and have several useful features, but their drivers are rock solid. In addition, they come equipped with both Firewire and USB connectors, which gives you the choice of how you want to connect them to your computer if you have both types. As for other USB interfaces, both Focusrite and PreSonus make excellent audio interfaces with high-quality convertors and preamps. They are also very reasonably priced. Since you're using a Mac, I would encourage you to look at the Apogee Duet 2. But considering it only features 2 in and 4 outs, you wouldn't have enough ins to meet your requirements.(Bummer)
Thanks allot, why do you say I wouldnt have enough ins to meet my requirements? To clarify when I said I want to do vinyl sampling, micing and guitar, I meant in separate times, if that makes a difference.
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Old 27-09-2011, 02:33 PM   #6
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Re: advice on buying some new hear (interface, preamp etc)

There are mixed reviews of MOTU interfaces, if ran under Windows. So unless you work solely with macs, I would look at other manufacturers.

Roland (more budget-friendly) and RME (pure quality and stability) are high on my list.

Though TBH, if you think your motherboard's internal sound card has a better sounding output than the Tascam's, then there's something wrong with the Tascam or you are hearing something else than "quality".

Last edited by Blank^; 27-09-2011 at 02:36 PM..
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Old 27-09-2011, 07:49 PM   #7
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Re: advice on buying some new hear (interface, preamp etc)

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Originally Posted by bushofghosts View Post
Thanks allot, why do you say I wouldnt have enough ins to meet my requirements? To clarify when I said I want to do vinyl sampling, micing and guitar, I meant in separate times, if that makes a difference.
My bad, I assumed that you wanted to record multiple tracks at once. If not, then there is nothing out there that can compete with the high quality converters found in the same price range as the Apogee Duet 2. The upgraded preamps and AD/DA converters are the same ones they use in their flagship interface called Symphony I/O. Read the details here: [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
The obvious downside is that it only works with Macs. But because of this, the integration between apogee interfaces and any core audio compatible application such as Logic, GarageBand, Live, etc., is seamless... it just works. Good luck.

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