Pros of a good interface?

Furyof

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A thread I saw made me really question my interface. I've been using a Behringer Guitar Link. It's basically a little box you plug your guitar into. There is no gain or input nobs . You just have a switch for high recording (basically has more gain, or low recording). Cheap little thing, the kind of thing you see your uncle have when he has a "studio". I've been using it for years now without question. It clips on heavy palm mutes and really hard hits sometimes.

I've know this was bad but never took much thought into it. But with my new song mix I've noticed problems. I can hear the clipping palm mutes. I usually try to compress my guitars, where the palm mutes are mostly effected.

How bad is this actually? It was like 35 dollars which is why I got it. I know some of the stuck up users around will probably say why bother if you can't put in the money. I wanted to make music. I still do, and I'm still poor AF. Any thoughts or recommendations for an upgrade? I use a SD Nazgul bridge pickup.

I guess it's worth noting I use amp sims too of course.
 

jerm

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I would personally look into a Native Instruments 6 or a Focusrite 2i4.
 

Steinmetzify

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Dude some good headphones and a $99 interface can take you a long way. Check out some ATH-M50s and a Mackie Blackjack.

It'll make a big difference. The $100-$200 interfaces will at least have pads and you'll notice what happens when using it.

I'm not saying grab a $1,000 interface or anything; $200 can make a huge difference in your recording world.
 

7 Strings of Hate

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Yea, a used M-audio box for like 50 bones on ebay is probably what you want. Used scarlett. Something like that. Would be a big jump
 

Descent

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I think you have a lot of things to consider in an interface nowadays.

For the most part a lot of the budget ones have the same chips/hardware converters so probably first and foremost would be driver support and company reputation. Also an interface is just as good as the software you use it with.

For example, I am running PreSonus FP10 which is something I bought in 2005 for about $550. It is getting long in the tooth and Windows 7 will probably be the last OS that works with it although people have made them run on Win8 and Win10. It was a disaster to run on Digital Performer on Mac and I had to switch to Cubase when I bought it, even though there were reviews that said that it worked fine with Digital Performer. The last 5 years or so I've been using it with Studio One and it has worked flawlessly. It was also for the most part worry free on Cubase before that, and ran with occasional glitch on Sonar. What I am trying to say is that you have to look for the best hardware for the software you plan to use.

If you're running direct, I'd suggest that you look at interfaces that have a leg up in the DI built into them, or get an external preamp/DI box. I'd honestly go for an Audient interface if I don't need too many channels and plan to record direct for the most part. A little more expensive but you get better converters and instrument input for the price. Otherwise anything on the market will do: PreSonus, Focusrite, Roland, Cubase, etc. I am partial to PreSonus and Roland as so far both companies have treated me right, something that can't be said for Cubase.
 

Furyof

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Dude some good headphones and a $99 interface can take you a long way. Check out some ATH-M50s and a Mackie Blackjack.

It'll make a big difference. The $100-$200 interfaces will at least have pads and you'll notice what happens when using it.

I'm not saying grab a $1,000 interface or anything; $200 can make a huge difference in your recording world.
Yeah, Some of the stuff I do would a lot of users laugh I bet. I have a lot of gaming headphones. Mostly cheap ones. I cycle through them when mixing because they all have characteristics. My most expensive gaming ones are really bass heavy, things like that. When I can afford it, I'd just get studio monitors. I'm going to try to get a new interface now.

It'd be awesome if it just destroys my perception on what guitar tone used to be. And what it could be
 

Drew

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Yeah, a better interface would give you a lot more headroom, for one, and likely better transient response. The good news is coming off a $35 DI box with no pad, you can see some pretty big marginal improvements for not much money. :lol:

A 2i4 wouldn't be a bad place to start, for an affordable interface that will give you better conversion, a pad and adjustable input volume, and the ability to start working with mics.
 

KnightBrolaire

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having been in a similar place last year, I bought a 2nd gen 2i4 (since they have 8db more of headroom than the 1st gen) and haven't had a problem with clipping since.
 

bostjan

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It's possible to make do with pretty much anything. It all depends on what sorts of things you want to pull off, though. If Spastic Ink, Guided by Voices, Beck, and Bruce Springsteen could pull off full albums recorded on 4 track cassette recorders, then why can't we expect the same to be possible with a $35 digital interface and an old computer? It'd still be better than the old four track, right?

I think so, but, on the other hand, I think that there would also be a much easier way. I've tried a great deal of studio equipment out, and I think you generally "get what you pay for." Some of the really pricey interfaces are well worth it, just because of all of the extra convenience that you don't get with cheaper stuff. My personal studio is built around a Presonus VSL. I got it cheap. The VSL worked great, but Presonus stopped supporting it and now the whole gimmick of it has been rendered useless by MicroSoft, and Presonus is no longer updating their drivers, so it's just a really basic interface now. I don't have specific complaints, though, as long as I'm using it as a studio interface and not as a live mixer. I have one of the Behringer ADAT expansion interfaces, too, and the preamps in it sound just as good, if not a little better, than the Presonus. I went through quite a few groans and pains with Studio One, but, now that I've figured out most of my issues with it, I'm pretty comfortable with that. Due to all of my prroblems early on, though, I like to recommend Focusrite, since their lower-priced interfaces seem to be simply superior to other equally-priced interfaces.

If you have a decent budget set aside, though, I think you might prefer to spring the extra cash for a Universal Audio Apollo interface.
 

thevisi0nary

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In this order - stability, latency, preamps, conversion. Normally I would say don't upgrade because it won't make the difference you think, but you can certainly get something better than the guitar link in the $100 range.
 

Shask

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I agree that a better interface could help a lot with your frustrations. You dont need something super fancy. I assume there are many options under $200 that would work well that have been mentioned above. I use a Presonus 22VSL and it has worked well. One reason I chose it when I did was because it used to be one of the only small interfaces that had MIDI in/out, which is important if you use keyboards, or guitar processors. It is small and does pretty much everything I need it to do. You will probably find you have a lot cleaner sound, and more options with something similar.
 

Shask

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I think so, but, on the other hand, I think that there would also be a much easier way. I've tried a great deal of studio equipment out, and I think you generally "get what you pay for." Some of the really pricey interfaces are well worth it, just because of all of the extra convenience that you don't get with cheaper stuff. My personal studio is built around a Presonus VSL. I got it cheap. The VSL worked great, but Presonus stopped supporting it and now the whole gimmick of it has been rendered useless by MicroSoft, and Presonus is no longer updating their drivers, so it's just a really basic interface now. I don't have specific complaints, though, as long as I'm using it as a studio interface and not as a live mixer. I have one of the Behringer ADAT expansion interfaces, too, and the preamps in it sound just as good, if not a little better, than the Presonus. I went through quite a few groans and pains with Studio One, but, now that I've figured out most of my issues with it, I'm pretty comfortable with that. Due to all of my prroblems early on, though, I like to recommend Focusrite, since their lower-priced interfaces seem to be simply superior to other equally-priced interfaces.

Presonus stopped support on VSL? I have a 22VSL, but haven't updated in a few years because it just works with no issues. I am sad to hear they wont update it anymore though. I never actually used the VSL stuff, but the main drivers were always very solid.

I know I looked at Focusrite back then, and only Presonus small interfaces had MIDI in/out. It looks like they might have added it to their smaller interfaces now though. I always wondered why it seemed liked Focusrite was more popular on guitar boards.
 

bostjan

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Presonus stopped support on VSL? I have a 22VSL, but haven't updated in a few years because it just works with no issues. I am sad to hear they wont update it anymore though. I never actually used the VSL stuff, but the main drivers were always very solid.

I know I looked at Focusrite back then, and only Presonus small interfaces had MIDI in/out. It looks like they might have added it to their smaller interfaces now though. I always wondered why it seemed liked Focusrite was more popular on guitar boards.

Yeah, it was a major source of frustration for me, personally. I purchased the device with two things in mind. The VSL stuff worked great for live recording until Microsoft did a major Windows update that rendered the VSL end of it completely useless. Presonus responded to the flood of requests for updated drivers by simply giving up on that aspect of the product, so it no longer works. This came about at exactly the same time I had about four other fatal issues with Studio One in the middle of a paid recording session. So I ended up burning two and a half days of rented studio time without a functioning DAW and then had major technical issues with the VSL that were going to preclude me from being able to complete a live session the way I had been prepared to do so... It could have all been mitigated one way or another if Presonus's customer support had not been completely nonexistent over that time period. I got my issues with Studio One resolved, but not really within an acceptable time-frame - as a result, I will not recommend their products, in case any one else has any issues with anything and needs customer or technical support within a reasonable timeframe.
 

isotropy

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For home studio, these days you can't go wrong with a 100-150 dollar interface. I use the Audiobox USB 2.0 from Presonus (it's the older version - they have better stuff now). And this thing has done me no wrong.
 


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