1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

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stereoguitar
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Joined: Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:23 pm

1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by stereoguitar » Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:13 pm

I'm looking for an audio interface with good preamps to use in a live-setting with Ableton.

Specs needs:

- 2 hi-z inputs w/ preamps (guitar)
- 1 input w/preamp, for a piezo contact mic (does this need to be hi-z, or could I just use a piezo DI box?)
- 4 outputs (minimum)

Budget 1500$

Any advice? Thanks!!
Last edited by stereoguitar on Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Machinesworking
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Location: Seattle

Re: 1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by Machinesworking » Wed Jan 10, 2018 1:33 am

RME
http://www.rme-usa.com/fireface-ucx.html

I own a Fireface 800, had it since about 2005, zero issues.

stereoguitar
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Joined: Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:23 pm

Re: 1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by stereoguitar » Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:48 pm

edit:
I need it to have preamps as well.

Machinesworking
Posts: 11118
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2004 9:30 pm
Location: Seattle

Re: 1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by Machinesworking » Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:10 am

stereoguitar wrote:edit:
I need it to have preamps as well.
The UCX has 2 pres, digitally controlled, but it's not the same without a input volume knob for sure.
The 802 had 4 Pres which is what you'll need wanting essentially three pres, it's above your budget though... MOTU would be my choice for a more reasonably priced card with 3+ pres and 4 outs. The 4 Pre is far less expensive with all your requirements. It probably doesn't have as transparent of pres as the RME.

If you're on a Mac I would go with Metric Halo. The 2882 in particular. The pres are considered better sounding than RME who have great sounding pres.
There's a brand new one at JRR Shop for $1,395 which is what I would buy if I were you. Digitally controlled pres again, but if you always plug the same three guitars in that's an advantage, no bumping or knobs being messed with. A IMO very slight concern about the 2882 is it's Firewire interface, FW to Thunderbolt and USB3 converters are quite reliable and add absolutely zero latency. Plus Metric Halo have confirmed their intent to offer conversion to the next level interface, which at this time is the USB-C interface IMO the next long lasting universal standard.

4 Pre https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail ... gI6avD_BwE

2882 https://www.ebay.com/itm/Metric-Halo-Mo ... OSw409Zz7L~

stereoguitar
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Joined: Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:23 pm

Re: 1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by stereoguitar » Thu Mar 15, 2018 9:40 pm

Thank you so much for your answer!

The MOTU 4pre has 2 hi-z (220k ?). And then I could probably use a DI for my third input?
The 2882 has inputs that are switchable to "Instrument mode" with input impedance of 200k ?.

Is the ? on these interfaces optimal for guitar? Isn't 1M ? like a standard for guitars?

Machinesworking
Posts: 11118
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2004 9:30 pm
Location: Seattle

Re: 1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by Machinesworking » Thu Mar 15, 2018 10:05 pm

stereoguitar wrote:Thank you so much for your answer!

The MOTU 4pre has 2 hi-z (220k ?). And then I could probably use a DI for my third input?
The 2882 has inputs that are switchable to "Instrument mode" with input impedance of 200k ?.

Is the ? on these interfaces optimal for guitar? Isn't 1M ? like a standard for guitars?
Haven't used the 2882 personally so I couldn't tell you.
There is this in the docs though, a section saying flatly you can plug a guitar directly in, and how to make a pseudo balanced cable to get a lower noise level out of the guitar etc.

http://www.metric-halo.com/media/legacy ... 82_HW.html

dcease
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Re: 1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by dcease » Fri Mar 16, 2018 11:34 pm

You could consider a UA Apollo unit as well, could probably find a good deal on a silverface unit if $1500 is a hard number. Definitely meets your requirements.
Link

stereoguitar
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Joined: Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:23 pm

Re: 1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by stereoguitar » Mon May 07, 2018 7:08 pm

What do you think about the Apogee Quartet? Its the same price as the Metric Halo 2882.

Also, I just found the Antelope Zen Tour which look quite nice, with 4 hi-z ins and 2 reamp (!) outs. Used price approx 1000 usd.


Still haven't found out what the optimal input impedance should be on the interface to match the guitar... The Metric Halo and Motu have hi-z ins with about 200k Ohm, while the Apogee has 2M Ohm. :|

patshep
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Re: 1500$ Audio Interface for guitar

Post by patshep » Wed May 09, 2018 2:40 am

I would stay away from apogee based on my history with them, ie... they don't update their drivers, it's a way to force us to buy more hardware
i have an rme babyface, it's portable, works great and robust

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