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Audio Interface Recommendation

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  • Audio Interface Recommendation

    I used to record myself with Audacity on my old laptop by just running a cable from my TD20X module into the mic input on my laptop. Now I have a new laptop (Dell Inspirion 17) that has no mic input. I tried using the headphone jack, as I heard it can sometimes also function as an input, but I cannot get it to work - there is no option in the audio controls that I could find to allow me to use the jack for anything other than headphones, speakers, or a headset (i.e., no "line-in" or "mic" option). I know next to nothing about recording on computers, but the guys at GC say I need an audio interface to go from the module into the USB on my laptop. I only record a handful of times a year, and am not too concerned with recording quality, as it is mostly just a learning tool for myself. I see audio interfaces for a little as $30 (Behringer U-Control UCA202) to several hundreds and up. Can anyone recommend an inexpensive interface for my purposes? Thanks all.

  • #2
    Kraft Music has a nice 'Focusrite Scarlet Bundle'!

    It includes a small USB-Interface, a large-diaphragm condenser microphone, a pair of headphones that are said to be based off the popular AKG K271, and even some other accessoires. Maybe this is something for you!


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    - Dänoh



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    • #3
      It really depends how many input channels you want. The cheaper ones generally have a lower number of channels so if stereo (2 channels) is all you need, then a cheaper model is fine. Obviously the more money you spend the more inputs you'll get in addition to additional features and higher specs (eg. sampling rate options).

      As an example, I just bought a Roland Studio Capture ($1000ish Aussie dollars) which has 16 inputs, allowing me to make full use of all the outputs on my TD30 (8 + 2) plus being able to plug guitars and mics all at the same time. It also allows me to have 4 separate and customisable monitor mixes which works well for our 3 piece band (one monitor mix for each person with one spare (could be used for FOH).


      Roland TD-30KV, Pearl Demon Drive Double Pedal, Pearl H1000 hit hat stand, Shure SE530 IEMs, AKG K171 MKII Headphones, Mackie DLM PA, Yamaha MG102C mixer, Roland Studio Capture

      Natal Walnut kit (US Fusion X), Bosphorus Antique 16" Crash & 22" Ride, Bosphorus Gold Series 14" hats.

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      • perceval
        perceval commented
        Editing a comment
        He did say "inexpensive" and to record only once a while...

      • campster
        campster commented
        Editing a comment
        True, I did say go cheap if the OP only wanted two channels ;-) Mixing/recording drums on only two channels does reduce flexibility to alter the sounds after the recording.

        Another cheap option could be a MIDI interface to get the separate drums into the DAW or similar.

      • hairmetal-81
        hairmetal-81 commented
        Editing a comment
        If it was a given, that OP had a budget of $1000, he could have had a used RME Interface, would have the best converters there are at this pricepoint, digital ADAT I/O expandability, NO proprietary power cord,

        ...and still would have $300 to 400 leftover, to buy all necessary cables or a decent quality studio microphone!

        But then he has NOT that budget! So no point there in recommending a TOTL interface. He is using it "only a handful of times a year", anyway!

    • #4
      I bought one of those little USB pre-amp box, namely the ART USB Dual Pre.

      It is a great little preamp, that will allow you to record 2 channels into your computer via USB.
      The sound quality actually amazes me every time, especially at that affordable price!

      It doesn't need power if you plug it in a USB port, but can also work as a standalone with a power plug or even a 9-volt battery.

      Check it out!
      http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/USBDualPrePS
      DTX700, eDRUMin 4+10, A2E Dixon kit, Yamaha cymbals, FSR HH
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