To get the best results using an audio interface..
You would want to investigate and spend your money wisely.
The truth is…..
How far are you willing to go with your budget?
To get some nice recordings done you can invest in some lower costing product and get some great results to.
You can get at all that for around 250 dollars if you really know what you are looking for.
Quality in your recordings is a must for the serious producer, so here is our list of audio cards on a budget.
So if you are serious in buying an interface you have to be sure that it has all the connections that you need for your projects. Do you need midi, microphone inputs, audio inputs, speaker outputs? Those are some basic questions but it might lower your cost if you find something that is right up your street, without having to pay for extra’s you don’t even use.
All of the following products are compatible with your Apple Mac and also your PC. So here goes the select few of usb sound interfaces if you are on a Low Budget. These products are from 2015 and are within the $250.-range.
This product from Focusrite has two audio inputs and outputs. The name by itself already tells you this distinct feature. This Scarlett is also very nice designed and the interface is even a quality you expect from Focusrite. It also features a Mic Preamp/Instrument input. So you can record any signal you plug in to it.
You have full control over the volume and gain for every audio input, it even comes with in-ear amp for your headphones and a big volume knob for your monitor speakers. On the backside of this unit there is a USB connection (usb 2.0) and stereo audio outputs. This Unit comes packed with a package of effects in the form of plugins to run with your audio software.
It is a very cost effective machine that does what it’s suppose to, it might be your next buy.
2. Presonus Audiobox 22VSL
This product is a simple box unit that provides your with two audio inputs and outputs connecting your pc or mac with USB. It also come packed with Midi ins and outs, using low latency and a audio software for your pc or mac to (Presonus SO artist edition).
As you can expect from the Audiobox is the the two main inputs have their own gain knobs, this goes for the monitor and headphone outputs as well.
This Audiobox has a good range and the Mic-preamps are also almost not noticeably working while you are recording through these inputs. It’s a good box-unit if you like this brand.
3. NATIVE INSTRUMENTS KOMPLETE AUDIO 6
Four distinct inputs and audio outputs a digital in and out and midi connection makes this Audio 6 very good beginners-level and a mid-range unit.
The design of this thing is outstanding with it’s big gain/trim rotary button on the very top side of the unit. The sturdiness of the machine is made from high quality parts and will last if you ever decide to take this thing with you to your gigs.
Being Native Instruments you can always be sure that they pack you with more then only the unit itself. You get a bundle of their Komplete software that packs with some VST’s in the form of effects as well as some nice sampled instruments. It also gives you the Cubase Daw lite version 6 and tracktor Lite 2.0
KA6 is therefor a very nice unit that can get you started if don’t already have any software to go with it. They always make sure you can use their products from the get go.
Read The Full Review: Ni Komplete Audio 6
4. Akai EIE Pro
This unit is something else. It looks like it’s straight out of 1980 with it’s vintage look. The distinct feature of this unit is it’s unique inserts so you can add anything to it’s signal path. You will not find that on many interfaces. Although i don’t know for who those inserts are catered for. It has also got 4 inputs and outputs.
With the extra 3 ubs slots there are endless possibilities and you should check out the review on those. The mic/lin inputs can be phantom powered in sets of two.
Those Meters look so astonishing and beautiful it takes you to an age where they used only analogue equipment. If need more inputs and you really love this unit you can go for the Pro Edition for some extra bucks.
5. Mackie Onyx Blackjack
This Quality product is made from a very sustainable chassis made of metal, so you can use this on the road with no problem. It’sa 2 input and output unit coming from this company that made itself famous within the audio tech industry, so it’s not that big of a surprise for thos audio heads out there.
The two mic preamps are also high quality which allow you to connect microphones as well as instruments. There is a monitor rotary knob on the front which allows you to monitor the line signals without any delay.
The most nice thing about this Mackie Blackjack is that the product is usb powered, so you don’t have to use any power from your electric grid.
From the discussed products this one isn’t the cheapest, but you just can’t go wrong with it either.
Read more: Macki Onyx BlackJack Review
6. Roland Duo Capture EX UA-22
The VS Preamps on this Roland DUO are the exact same ones that are used on their more expensive lines of audio interfaces. As the name suggests it has two ins and two outs. One of those inputs can be used for mics with 48+ volt and one guitar hi-Z control can be used on input one to connect those.
It also has two midi connections one for in and out and balanced jack outputs on the back. It also features an Phones out on the front with it’s own gain knob.
The UA-22 is a usb powered product which can also be powered with batteries or an AC adapter unit. Again you won’t find these features on many units.
7. Focusrite 6i6
This is the big brother of 2i2 with it’s massive options for in and ouputs. So if you like the brand and need something bigger then the little bro this is the one.
Coming with the same design look and feel, it packs with 2 micpreamps in the front, and 2 line level inputs in the back. You can also connect with extra SPDIF ins and outs on the back panel. The mic preamps come with 48+ volt to power mics and the rotary knob controls the gain/level of the out one and two. Also headphone outs which are two have their own gain knobs.
So this peace of equipment is a good bargain for your money, with all it’s ins and out connectivity you will need in a small bedroom studio.
Read the full article: Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 Review
8. Steinberg UR22
This equipment piece is a well versed interface from Steinberg’s lab. This piece has connects with usb to your pc or mac. It comes with two inputs and two outputs. It’s a very sturdy looking unit if you ask me.
The two inputs are a combo unit giving you the possibility to feed it with line level or feeding it with your mic level while activating the 48+ volt. The Hi-Z possibitly also gives you the option to record a bass or electric guitar shredding! Midi and a Headphone out is nothing out of the ordinary. The Headphone out comes with a rotary knob to trim the level you desire.
It’s almost the same as the UR12 but this unit comes with two mic preamps, depending on your needs this could be your first ever sound card/interface you might consider buying. It also comes with Cubase LE.
9. Presonus Audio Box iTwo
Presonus always packs it’s units with their A class mic pre’s. And in this range of the i-serie their are two units they sell.
Compared to the iOne this iTwo audiobox two mic peamplifiers wich can also be used for line levels and instruments levels. This piece has everything of quality you can expect from personus.
An heaphone out can be found on the front coming with it’s own level knob. Their is also a big level knob in the front which gains the main outputs. For those who need midi must know that it also has an in and out connect on the back side of the unit.
A simple but great solution if you don’t need much ins and outs.
Read the Full Articles: Studiobox iTwo Review by Presonus
10. Focusrite iTrack Solo
The great thing about this unit is that you can connect it with your iPad. Yes! You heard it right! But that’s not all, it’s also connectable with a Apple Mac and even your personal computer.
It’s a simple audio interface unit with 2 inputs and 2 outputs. Their is a separate mic input and a separate instrument input on the front. Each of these inputs have their own gain knob as well as an clip monitor light.
As you can expect from Focusrite is that they bring quality stuff, a simple unit that gives you the bear minimum. If you are just starting out then this piece of audio recording equipment interface could be your first buy.
You can also check out the High End Interfaces by clicking on it.
There are many other audio interfaces that also are sold in this price range, do your research as we do ours. We just wanted to help out a little bit with our top 10 low-budget interfaces for your audio needs.
Wow.. Thats a big list isn’t it? You can comment below and share it if you like this list.