Thomann's Cool Online Guides: Audio interfaces

8. Which is Best for Me?

Let’s look at the most important questions you should be asking yourself when considering an audio interface:

What do I want to attach?

This will have a large influence on your choice. If you have microphones then you need an interface with microphone inputs, if you have a guitar then you need instrument inputs and so on. If you want to incorporate a mixer then that changes your requirements, as you won’t need mic preamps on the audio interface. If you have a digital mixer with ADAT outputs, then you’ll need an ADAT input on the interface.

How do I work?

If you work alone, recording one thing at a time, then you won’t need many inputs. However, if you work with bands or multiple signals, then you’ll need lots of inputs for multitrack recording. If you prefer to mix on an analogue mixer, then you’ll need lots of outputs from the computer. If, however, you prefer to automate mixes inside the computer, then a stereo output for monitoring may be all you need.

What do I have already?

Consider your existing gear and how it may be used with the interface. You may already have good quality outboard mic preamps, or perhaps you’ve got gear with digital outputs that you want to integrate. You may also find that an audio interface and a computer will render some of your equipment redundant – such is the march of progress.

How am I going to use the interface?

You should consider whether you need something portable, or whether this is something that is going to be permanently wired into your studio? If you will be doing projects in surround sound, you will need the right amount of outputs for a surround monitoring system? Do you use your computer for other things such as games or home theatre that might affect your choice? If you need to have the connections freely available in front of you, then an external audio interface is essential. However, if you prefer everything neatly connected and out of the way, then a PCI based interface with a ‘loom’ of cables might be better.

PCI-Card with a external connection box

Which bus suits me best?

If you are running a laptop then that restricts you to Firewire/USB and ExpressCard/PCMCIA. With a desktop computer then you are open to all options, provided your computer has the appropriate socket.

Any future changes?

The way your studio might evolve in future should also be considered. Will you have enough inputs, or are you able to add more interfaces to expand at a later date? It’s not a good idea to try to combine two different interfaces – the ASIO driver standard doesn’t support it, and it generally doesn’t work very well. Some audio interfaces allow you to use more than one of the same type simultaneously in order to stack them up – their drivers are written so that ASIO sees them as a single device.

Your Contacts
Phone: +49-9546-9223-30
FAX: +49-9546-922328
Question!
Question! Give the right answer and win 1x Thomann Rack Case 2U worth €55.
The musical ´Illyria´ is based on what Shakespearean comedy?
Conditions of participation
Terms and Conditions for participation
in online competitions

Note: Participation in an online competition runs independently from any purchase at Thomann GmbH. The following Competition Rules apply when participating in any online competition run by Musikhaus Thomann:

  1. Competition

    1. The competitions are organised by Thomann GmbH, CEO: Hans Thomann, Hans-Thomann-Straße 1, 96138 Burgebrach, Germany.
  2. Participation

    1. Competitions are only open to persons of full age.
    2. To take part in the competition you must answer all questions correctly, fill in the registration form and submit your entry to Thomann GmbH by pressing the "send" button.
      By pressing the "send" button the participant accepts the aforementioned terms and conditions.
    3. The participant is responsible for entering their email and/or postal address correctly. Entries to the competition will be logged electronically.
  3. Qualifying Entrants

    1. Staff of Thomann GmbH and any cooperation partners and their dependants are excluded from participation.
    2. Should these conditions of participation be violated, especially by using illegitimate means, Thomann GmbH reserves the right to exclude persons from the competition. In case of such violations prizes can be withdrawn and claimed back subsequently.
  4. Announcing the winner

    1. The winners will be notified by Thomann GmbH by email or in writing and their names may be published on the homepage www.thomann.de. The winner accepts this form of publication explicitly.
      Should for whatever reason the winner not claim their prize, then a new winner will be drawn.
    2. The prize presented to the winner may not be identical to the item description. There can be deviances regarding the model, colour etc.
    3. The merchandise prizes will be sent by Thomann GmbH or by one of its contracting delivery companies, per freight forwarder, courier or postal service to the postal address indicated by the winner.

      The delivery is free of charge. Only extra transport costs and customs/duties must be covered by the winner. In the case that the delivery has to be made through a freight forwarding company the freight forwarding company will contact the winner to arrange delivery timings.
    4. An exchange, cash alternative or replacement prize is not possible.
    5. The claim to the prize or replacement of the prize cannot be assigned to a third party.
  5. Data protection

    1. The participant accepts explicitly that Thomann GmbH saves all necessary data for the duration of the competition and forwards them exclusively for purposes related to the winning process to the respective cooperation partner, who is also permitted to save the personal data only for the duration of the competition. The participant is free to withdraw his entry at any time. Please direct the withdrawal to:

      Thomann GmbH
      to the data protection officer
      Hans-Thomann-Straße 1
      96138 Burgebrach, Germany
    2. Thomann GmbH is obliged to consider the regulations for data protection according to the Federal Data Protection Law (BDSG) valid at the conclusion of the competition. In this context the general data protection regulations under notes regarding data protection should be noted.
  6. Liability

    1. Thomann GmbH will be released from any obligations by handing out the prize.
    2. Thomann GmbH is not liable for the insolvency of a cooperation partner and the resulting consequences for the implementation and processing of the competition.
  7. Other

    1. Legal proceedings are barred.
    2. The law of the Federal Republic of Germany applies exclusively.

Audio interfaces overview

Dante AVIO Analog Output Adapter 0x2 C.Giant LP-6210C Black Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb Steinberg UR-RT2 Presonus Studio One 4 Pro UG Prof/Prod Vic Firth SIH2 Roland TM-6 Pro Drum Trigger Module TritonAudio FetHead Fender SQ J.Mascis Jazzmaster 2018 Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0 Marshall Major III Bluetooth Black Harley Benton TE-7 FanFret FBB 2018 DLX
Recommended
Dante AVIO Analog Output Adapter 0x2

Y Adapter Enables the output of analogue audio line signals from a Dante network, RJ45 Metal plug with built-in LEDs, 2 XLR male outputs, 96 KHz / 24 bit, Robust housing for day-to-day tasks while touring, Fully functional Dante...

to the product
€163
Recommended
C.Giant LP-6210C Black

Keyboard 61 Keys with touch dynamics, 162 Sounds, 200 Rhythms, 61 Percussion effects, 50 Demo songs, Fill-in, sync and rhythms variations, Split function, Chord, Recording, Pitch bend wheel, Microphone input, Line out sockets, Headphone output, Sustain pedal connection, USB...

to the product
€66
Recommended
Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb

Electro Harmonix Oceans 11 Reverb, effects pedal, 11 different reverb types: HALL, SPRING, PLATE, REVRS, ECHO, TREM, MOD, DYNA, AUTO-INF, SHIM and POLY, Tails switch: Select whether the reverb fades out naturally or stops immediately when the pedal is switched...

to the product
€149
Recommended
Steinberg UR-RT2

4x 2 USB 2.0 Audio Interface Up to 24-bit/192 kHz, 2 Class-A D-PRE microphone preamps with + 48 V phantom power, Rupert Neve Designs transformer switchable on each front input channel, 2 Analog XLR/jack combo inputs plus 2 line...

to the product
€311
Recommended
Presonus Studio One 4 Pro UG Prof/Prod

Audio MIDI Sequencer (DAW) (download) Upgrade from Presonus Studio One Professional 1-3 / Producer 2 to Studio One 4 Professional Sleek single-window philosophy, Consistent drag-and-drop functionality throughout, Project page allows integrated mastering with DDP export, Redbook...

to the product
€145
(1)
Recommended
Vic Firth SIH2

Vic Firth SIH2 isolation headphones, (reduces overall noise levels by 25 dB). successor of the legendary Vic Firth SIH-1 headphones, features redesigned larger driver in the ear cups that deliver a more powerful low end, cleaner mids and clear highs...

to the product
€79
(1)
Recommended
Roland TM-6 Pro Drum Trigger Module

Trigger Module For acoustic drummers who want to extend the sound possibilities of their drums with electronic sounds, 500 one-shot sounds, 268 V-Drum sounds, 80 Drum kits, SDHC card slot for importing your own samples, 6x 6.3 mm stereo...

to the product
€789
(1)
Recommended
TritonAudio FetHead

TritonAudio FetHead, in-line microphone preamplifier, XLR 3-pole female XLR 3-pole male, ultra low noise Class A JFet amplifier, 27dB amplification (@3 KOhm load), 4 matched JFets, 24-48V Phantom Power required, for Ribbon & Dynamic microphones, shields phantom power from...

to the product
€66
Recommended
Fender SQ J.Mascis Jazzmaster 2018

Electric Guitar J.Mascis (Dinosaur Jr.) Artist Model, Body: Basswood, Neck: Maple, Fretboard: Indian Laurel, Neck profile: C, 21 Jumbo frets, Nut width: 42.5 mm, Scale: 648 mm, Pickups: 2 Jazzmaster single coils, Adjusto-Matic bridge with vintage style floating tremolo,...

to the product
€477
Recommended
Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0

Dante AVIO Analog Input Adapter 2x0; converts analog audio line signals to feed any Dante-connected system; 96 kHz / 24 Bit; fully-functional Dante interface; adjustable signal levels: +24dBu / +4dBu / 0dBu/ 0dBV /-10dBV (through Dante Controller); frequency Response: 20Hz...

to the product
€163
Recommended
Marshall Major III Bluetooth Black

Marshall Major III Bluetooth Black stereo headphones, on-ear design, closed back, foldable, Bluetooth® aptX Technology, up to 30 h running time, control knob on headphone, 40 mm moving coil dynamic speaker, newly constructed hinges and headband for a better fitting,...

to the product
€135
Recommended
Harley Benton TE-7 FanFret FBB 2018 DLX

Harley Benton"TE-7 FanFret FBB 2018 DLX, 7-string Fanned Fret electric guitar, TE-Style with reversed headstock, body: ash, top: Flame Maple, neck: 5-ply maple/nato neck, neck mount: bolt on, neck form: Modern C-Profil, fingerboard: Roseacer, inlays: offset DOT inlays, 24 fanned...

to the product
€298
Feedback Found an error or want to give us feedback about this page?

We're looking forward to hearing from you and aim to solve any problems as soon as we can.

Please leave a comment. Please enter your e-mail address.