Akai EIE Pro Review [A professional audio interface]

pic of akai eieIt’s Durability Protects It From The Bang You Get For Your Buck!

When you read “pro” written post-product name, it’s actually a good selling point.

Does its silver color mean anything to any of us?

When they tell you it’s pro, you expect it could help you produce great audio.

We all expect that it can perform at a certain level that it engages our creativity and optimizes our workflow. But can the AKAI EIE Pro really do everything it says itself to be? Well, it’s possible.

Akai’s legacy equipment


Akai has been known for their MPC’s. You know those samplers with the pads and rotary buttons. These devices where heavily used by beat making producers in all types of different genres.

But the hiphop sampled music based creators where really the ones who put akai on the map. Many legends within this music genre made use of this machine like: Jdilla, Madlib, RZA and many more.

It’s not a weird thing that they want to expand towards their music making fans.

If you look at the latest equipment you will find everything an electronic music producer might need. From midi controllers to plugins that run in your DAW. And that’s why they also made this nice looking interface how it is today.

It’s Their First Time

AKAI eie picture

Red EIE, Silver EIE PRO

EIE or Electronic Interface Expander was the first audio interface AKAI has built.

AKAI has always been around with their digital pianos. synthesizers and samplers.

It’s their first time to build something good in terms of interfaces with the EIE.

The success of their first EIE, which many raved for its user-friendly interface and durability, is lived up by the successor EIE Pro.

AKAI continues to listen to its consumer base. And with market research, they found that many wanted to use all inputs simultaneously at better sample rates.

In short, many who were dazzled by the original EIE wanted something that could be used in a professional studio.

Read more about the best budget audio interfaces review

Strength And Durability

AKAI-EIE-PROThe appearance of the AKAI EIE Pro already means business. The silver look and its sturdy casing made from strengthened plastic and metal ensures that even if you drop it, the circuits are still intact.

Sure, it looks big as it’s 8 inches wide and 4 inches big with a thickness of 6 inches. It can also be quite heavy. But the weigh means business in itself. Simply put, it’s built like a tank.

Features & Specs

Akai's professional interface

  • The EIE Pro has all the features of the original EIE complete with its four combi inputs that accept both quarter-inch plugs and XLR inputs. Each of these inputs have their gain controls. Unlike lighter preamp units, these gain knobs don’t wobble.
  • Switches for phantom power are on top of each combi inputs for your condensers.
  • The EIE also has the original VU meters that are quite accurate. It’s quite fun if you plug it in. It glows blue when you’re at an optimal level, and it goes red when you’re quite clipping.
  • It also has a switch for mono-stereo and a blending knob for your direct input and playback. Also, a convenient headphone control.
  • The power button is located behind the unit, has a complete MIDI In/Out, a computer data link. AKAI also thinks of the USB space it occupies on your computer, so it provides three more extra USB 2.0 slots.
    Also, if you have some extra outputs, there’s four slots for you.
  • Then if you’ve got extra audio processors, you could use the four insert slots behind it.

Usage of this audio interface

When I first operated this unit, I was quite amazed. I installed the free Cubase LE 5 that came with the unit. When I was recording, it felt as if I was a professional working with a good outboard unit.

The best thing about it is that it’s so intuitive, I didn’t even have to read the manual (I only read it for troubleshooting. Admit it, most of us do).
AKAI-EIE-PROOne of the things I really love about the interface is the way that it could simultaneously record in high quality with an assortment of microphones.

It’s even quite friendly when it comes to gain.
While many might complain about the substantial latency felt when operating the unit.

I felt quite at home with it.

The VU meters are the most helpful of the lot. No more looking at on-screen meters. All I needed to look at was the VU meters changing their color. It also changes in real time, making them a valuable feature of the device.

Final Words

My verdict for the AKAI EIE Pro is that it’s stellar in many ways. It’s priced at quite a low price of $300, but you get something that feels and actually functions as something more expensive.

This is definitely a must-try if you’re still confused about which audio interface you’d have to get. Please Share Or Comment!!