If a friend or group member calls me today and asks a beginner about the USB audio interface to go to a DIY record, I would recommend Tascam US-2 × 2. After 30 hours of researching this category, discussing key features of audio professionals and recording instruments and vocal samples on five models for a well-prepared audience, we chose US-2 × 2 as our favorite. We found that this is the easiest to use model, and in most cases, configure plug and play. It is also one of the most affordable dual-channel USB audio interfaces on the market, which makes it easier to recommend it.
During the comparative evaluation of listeners, our team found that Tascam US-2 × 2 provided the most consistent warm, very detailed record. It is powerful enough and sensitive enough to work with most microphones, so you can use it to record any instrument that you need. Compared to other models that we studied, the robust build quality of US-2×2 makes it an excellent choice for portable recording. iOS supports the benefits of mobile music users who want to leave their laptops behind. US-2 × 2 also has built-in MIDI support, so you can connect an electronic instrument, such as a keyboard or drum machine, without the need for additional equipment.
If you want to record vocals for podcasts or other projects with a clean voice, you can use a simple all-in-one USB microphone, but anyone who wants to record the instrument will appreciate the flexibility of USB, like the US-2 × 2 audio interface,
Audio interface manufacturers usually include software with hardware, and this choice can help determine the solution of one box, not the other. If you do not already have your favorite recording software, PreSonus AudioBox iTwo also offers built-in support for MIDI and iOS devices and excellent sound quality, but adds a full-featured version of its highly valued Studio One Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) software ($ 100 value) . It also includes an iOS app for Capture Duo, but anyone can download it for free in the App Store. We believe that the Tascam device is usually better, because it is more durable and easy to use, and many people can use GarageBand or other free programs, but PreSonus is close behind.
If you record a group rehearsal and find that the pair of microphones is not enough, the Focusrite Scarlett 6i6 is an update that we can easily recommend. We tested the same high-quality mic preamps and 192/24 DACs as the Scarlett 2i2, and relied on Scarlett 6i6 to record quality recordings, but added built-in MIDI and iOS devices to support the lack of dual-channel siblings.
If you are doing a podcast or want to record vocals instead of an electric guitar or keyboard, the basic XLR-USB interface simplifies setup and saves you money. The blue microphone Icicle is a compact interface that allows you to connect a standard microphone of your choice, and then convert the analog signal to digital format for transfer to a computer via a USB connection. Despite its small size, it still provides a 48-volt phantom power needed to connect a condenser microphone. One of the drawbacks: you can not use the Apple Camera Connection connection kit to connect icicles to the iPad, so you still need to use a laptop.