Focusrite scarlett 8i6 or NI Komplete Audio 6??

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
Peevy
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Focusrite scarlett 8i6 or NI Komplete Audio 6??

Post by Peevy » Mon Jun 13, 2011 9:56 am

EDIT: OK so this thread was originally about deciding between the Focusrite Saffire 6 & the MOTU Micorbook. But through some more investigation/googling :) I've narrowed it down to the Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 & NI's Komplete Audio 6 because I think these reasonably new audio interfaces would offer more of a future proof option for me. Ive had some good feedback about the Scarlett 8i6 so far so I'd really appreciate any input you can provide on the Komplete Audio 6 or even more on the Scarlett 8i6 would be nice too.

Thanks :wink:
Last edited by Peevy on Sun Jun 19, 2011 8:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Sepp Ultura
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by Sepp Ultura » Mon Jun 13, 2011 10:08 am

In addition to that, the Saffire will give you the option of using XLR cables. That means recording other stuff using microphones rather than just your guitar using jack connections.

But if that's not what your up to, I'd go for the MOTU, since they're known for their superior drivers. I personally own a Saffire Pro 24 (firewire) and it does the job very nicely. But since you're USB only, I'd go for the MOTU because of the drivers.

About the 64 bit support. If you're running Win7 Pro, that shouldn't be a problem. I'm on a mac, but I've been playing around with my dad's old PC and installed Win7 Pro. Everything worked fine. For the Saffire, just browse the knownledge base. They've added 64 bit support for mac users. So I think it'll work fine on windows.

Why not go to your dealer with your laptop, plug them in there and see if they work?
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Sepp Ultura
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by Sepp Ultura » Mon Jun 13, 2011 10:17 am

Oh, just saw this about the Saffire:

http://www.musik-produktiv.ch/focusrite ... 6-usb.aspx

Sorry, description is in German. But down at the bottom the specs say it's compatible with Win7 64 bit.
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Sepp Ultura
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by Sepp Ultura » Mon Jun 13, 2011 10:19 am

And here's the specs of the MOTU:

http://www.motu.com/techsupport/technot ... quirements

Now it's up to you to choose! :wink:
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Peevy
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by Peevy » Mon Jun 13, 2011 10:37 am

Thanks for the input Sepp I really appreciate it.

Unfortunately I cant demo them because well my local music store is a bit crap really & as far as I know doesn't stock any audio interfaces. So I generally have to go on reviews & whatever else I can find out on the net. For some reason there's very few reviews for the Microbook. Your right the Microbook doesn't have an XLR input but does come with an XLR adapter which is handy. I do like that the Microbook is so tiny & extremely portable but the other thing I forgot to mention about the Saffire 6 is that it has 4 outputs which would be handy for DJing & I do intend to get into a bit of that in the near future (more of a half djing half performing kind of gig)

I was considering the just released Focusrite scarlett 8i6 but its not usb powered & doesn't seem as portable as the Saffire 6 or Microbook.
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subsynth
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by subsynth » Mon Jun 13, 2011 1:58 pm

I just got a Focusrite Scarlett 816. It's basically a new version of the Saffire, it is now USB 2.0 it is compatable with win 7 64 bit and it has more ins/outs available than the microbook.

4 inputs / 4 outputs was real important to me, 2 of those ins are Focusrite Pres and can accept XLR without an adapter.
The description says 8 in 6 out, but I don't use SPDIF and 2 of the ins are "loopback" from within the software

The mix software is nice, I was a little wary about having to use software to adjust the mix settings, but its very intuitive.

Here's how I use my audio interface:

Main Mix Outs (1,2) go to a mixer along with my hardware synths. One of my keyboards goes into the focusrite for looping and manipulation within ableton as well. The little mixer goes to the main PA / Sound system wherever we are performing.

The Headphone jack is set up with a different mix, it has an output from Ableton (Main outs 1&2 at lower volumes) and a click for the drummer (Out 3). This eliminates a lot of extra hardware and cables, I was sending a send from my mixer along with the click to a different mixer for the drummer.

However it does not give the drummer the mix from my other hardware that goes straight into the mixer, I guess I could send that back into the Audio interface for monitoring through the headphone jack, but I haven't gotten that complex with my routing, so far having the click and the main ableton mix is enough for him.

As you can see it's very important that I have more than one pair of outputs so I can have a separate mix for the drummer.

I run at about 6 ms ASIO buffer size and I have no real problems with pops or drop outs or latency, I run a few VSTs and Ableton instruments. I have an intel Core2 Duo T8100 @ 2.1 ghz with 4 gb RAM. Windows 7 64bit. 7200 RPM HD.

My typical live set has 4 MIDI Channels going to my hardware synths, a few audio tracks. (Drums/Percussion, Leads, Pads/Fillers/FX and Bass). And 4 VSTs / Instrument racks / that I play with an MIDI interface. I use looper on a return so I can route any of the VSTs into it for live looping as well as the input of the audio interface. Most of my main melodies that are played on VSTs are bounced to Audio. The tracks that I play live don't have any clips in them typically. I usually run under 10 % CPU Usage, and up to around 25% if a few VSTs are playing.

The MIDI out on the scarlett was a little funny for me, but I just use the MIDI out from my Oxygen MIDI interface so that the focusrite is just focusing on Audio.

Peevy
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by Peevy » Mon Jun 13, 2011 2:59 pm

Thanks for the very detailed description of your setup Sub. I was intending to stick to a usb bus powered interface, the Scarlett 8i6 looks very close to the same size as the Saffire 6. Would you say its much more of a hassle having to plug the Scarlett in to power it, rather than doing it over usb?
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subsynth
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by subsynth » Mon Jun 13, 2011 3:32 pm

I don't think it's more of a hassle, and considering that I am already using a korg nanokontrol, a launchpad and the oxygen on my USB bus I gain a little peace of mind knowing that the focusrite has it's own power source.

aizo
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by aizo » Mon Jun 13, 2011 3:41 pm

I have the microbook and it comes with an adapter for using XLR.

I bring it to work when I need to record teachers for a book we are working on. The sound is great and the damn thing is metal and is light as a feather. The version of cuemix it comes with is badass!!!
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Peevy
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by Peevy » Wed Jun 15, 2011 2:08 am

Ok so I'm torn now between the Microbook & the Scarlett 8i6 :)
aizo wrote:I have the microbook and it comes with an adapter for using XLR.

I bring it to work when I need to record teachers for a book we are working on. The sound is great and the damn thing is metal and is light as a feather. The version of cuemix it comes with is badass!!!
I've heard that the Microbook can be problematic when other usb devices are attached but that using a powered hub can sort the problem. Do you have many other devices connected alongside your Microbook & have you experienced any such problems?
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Anubis
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by Anubis » Wed Jun 15, 2011 3:44 am

I have the Saffire Pro 24 but my new laptop doesn't have firewire or expresscard(for my adapter) so I bought a Saffire 6 USB. The audio fidelity is almost as pristine as the Pro 24. It really is a quality bit of kit, as advertised.
9.0.4 Suite-Samsung Chronos 7 laptop(17")-12GB RAM-Samsung 840 series SSD(250GB)-iPad2-Maschine-TouchAble-SaffirePro24-Saffire6USB-Komplete Audio 6-Axiom25-PCR300-Nocturn-LaunchPad-QuNeo-QuNexus
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subsynth
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Re: Focusrite saffire 6 or Motu Microbook??

Post by subsynth » Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:54 pm

Focusrite has more physical 1/4 inch outputs. That was what sold me, I looked closely at the microbook. Your needs may be different.

They both are great companies with great track records for quality and reliability.

Peevy
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Re: Focusrite scarlett 8i6 0r NI Komplete Audio 6??

Post by Peevy » Sun Jun 19, 2011 8:40 pm

OK so this thread was originally about deciding between the Focusrite Saffire 6 & the MOTU Micorbook. But through some more investigation/googling :) I've narrowed it down to the Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 & NI's Komplete Audio 6 because I think these reasonably new audio interfaces would offer more of a future proof option for me. Ive had some good feedback about the Scarlett 8i6 so far so I'd really appreciate any input you can provide on the Komplete Audio 6 or even more on the Scarlett 8i6 would be nice too.

Thanks :wink:
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subsynth
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Re: Focusrite scarlett 8i6 or NI Komplete Audio 6??

Post by subsynth » Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:42 pm

After a few gigs on stage I can say I'm very happy with the Scarlett. I have an older machine (core 2 duo 4 gigs ram) so I'm sure newer stuff could achieve even lower latency. Still 6.0 ms is perfectly fine for me.


Both units seem to have the same available ins/outs. They come with different software suites.

I like focusrite, and having their preamps in my unit was a selling point for me.

The NI unit is completely USB powered, which you said was factoring somewhat into your decision.

Peevy
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Re: Focusrite scarlett 8i6 or NI Komplete Audio 6??

Post by Peevy » Mon Jun 20, 2011 8:44 pm

subsynth wrote:After a few gigs on stage I can say I'm very happy with the Scarlett. I have an older machine (core 2 duo 4 gigs ram) so I'm sure newer stuff could achieve even lower latency. Still 6.0 ms is perfectly fine for me.


Both units seem to have the same available ins/outs. They come with different software suites.

I like focusrite, and having their preamps in my unit was a selling point for me.

The NI unit is completely USB powered, which you said was factoring somewhat into your decision.
I'm glad the Scarlett is workiing out for you & I was very very close to ordering one today but I ended up going for the Komplete Audio 6, for a number of reasons. Firstly as you say I was looking for something usb powered, the KA 6 seems to be a bit more suited to djing, which is something I do intend to get into soon, plus all the ins & outs I require are there in what seems to be a more compact package than the Scarlett (size is also a factor for portability with my backpack, that hold my Laptop, Launchpad, LPK25, Headphones, maybe a Nanokontrol & Audio Interface)

The only reason I didn't check out the KA 6 before was because it was a bit out of my price range but after reading some very good reviews & opnions about it, I thought I'd increase the budget a bit. Plus I did consider ages ago getting its predecessor, the Audio Kontrol 1.

Fingers crossed its as good as they say it is :)
Thanks again subsynth for your input, it was much appreciated.
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