Den stora Thomann Online-Rådgivaren: Audio interfaces

9. FAQ

On this page you can find frequently asked questions on audio interfaces.

 


Unbalanced, balanced or auto-balanced?

All single channel electrical signals are unbalanced and travel down a single piece of wire (plus ground). A balanced line uses two wires, with the original signal going down one and a mirror image going down the other which has been phase reversed. When the phase is reversed back at the other end and the two signals are combined, any interference picked up in the cable is cancelled out. Auto-balanced cables switch between being balanced or unbalanced depending on what’s attached.

What is stacking?

Combining two or more interfaces of the same make and type to expand the number of connections available. Drivers must support this in order for it to work, and not all do. Audio interfaces from different manufacturers cannot be stacked in this fashion.

Which level, -10dB or +4dB?

Ultimately it depends on the equipment. +4dB is “hotter” and so has more level than -10dB, and on output this could cause distortion through the amplifier. On the other hand –10dB can be too quiet and waste some of the resolution of your dynamic processors. Most interfaces can be switched between the two, so that you can find the idea level for your particular environment.

What is Phantom Powering?

This is usually 48V of power that is required to run a condenser microphone. It is sent back down the same cable as the audio signal arrives on, requiring no separate connection, hence ‘phantom’.

What’s the difference between Coaxial and Optical S/PDIF?

Coax cables are highly insulated electrical cables, where the signal line runs down the centre of the shielding – antenna cables are coaxial. Optical cables use light that is transferred down a fibre optic cable. Both cables are suitable for digital signal transmissions, although optical is less prone to interference from electrical fields. Coax and optical are not directly compatible with each other and require a conversion box to switch between the two formats.

Does 96kHz sound better?

Although in theory we cannot hear the extra information that is recorded at 96kHz or even higher, it often does sound better, primarily because it allows ‘anti-aliasing’ filters to be placed at such a high frequency that they have far less detrimental effects on the audio spectrum. There are many other factors that affect audio quality though, so it can only be said as a rule that 96kHz generally sounds a little better than 48kHz on the same audio interface. 96kHz also generates double the amount of data, and so requires the computer to work much harder to cope with the information, and needs double the disk space to store it.

Is the quality of converters important?

Yes, but as with many things, the law of diminishing returns comes into play – although as a general rule you will get better quality if you pay more, paying double doesn’t double the quality. Unless you have highly trained ears, you may find it hard to detect any difference as you go further and further up the price range.

How high should the signal-to-noise ratio be?

Naturally, in principle, as high as possible. However, the higher you go, the harder it becomes to notice the difference. The maximum SNR for CD is 96dB and that’s pretty quiet. To make use of any SNR above 96dB you’d need to be working in 24bit resolution, which is one of the advantages of working at resolutions higher than 16bit.

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Audio interfaces översikt

Arturia DrumBrute Impact Daslight Light Rider Wifi DMX Interface Gator iMac 27" Tote Bag Arturia KeyLab MkII 61 Black Korg D1 Aston Microphones Swift Audient iD44 EQ Acoustics Spectrum 2 L5 Tile Black Universal Audio Apollo Thunderbolt 3 Card Cameo Studio PAR DTW IK Multimedia UNO Synth Presonus Studio 1810
(1)
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Arturia DrumBrute Impact

Analog drum computer; 10 sounds: Kick, Snare 1, Snare 2, Tom Hi, Tom Low, Cowbell, Cymbal, Closed Hat, Open Hat and FM; 64 patterns with up to 64 steps each; accentuation and switchable color tone coloring per instrument and step;...

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307 €
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Daslight Light Rider Wifi DMX Interface

Daslight Light Rider Wifi DMX Interface, Tablet-based DMX control, intuitive operating concept allows quick access to all functions and simplifies use, free App "Light Rider" for iOS, Android and Amazon Fire Tablet, perfect for DJs thanks to beat synchronization via...

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Gator iMac 27" Tote Bag

Nylon bag for 27" Apple iMac Good hold and protection with adjustable foam blocks and hard-panel reinforcement in the front cover, Foldable sun and dust protection, Double zipper, Cable bag inside, Outer accessory pocket for keyboard, mouse, SD cards...

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Arturia KeyLab MkII 61 Black

Arturia KeyLab MkII 61 Black; USB Midi-Keyboard with 61 Keys; velocity and Aftertouch; 16 RGB-backlit performance pads; 9 fader, 9 rotary knobs, LCD-Display; Category Function; Pitch- and Modulation-Wheel; Chord and Transpose Function; Transport Buttons; Connections: 5 Expression Control Inputs; 4x...

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513 €
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Korg D1

Digital Piano 88 Keys weighted RH3 keyboard (Real Weighted Hammer Action 3), 5 Sensitivity curves, Stereo PCM sound generation, 120 Voice polyphony, 30 Sounds, 30 Demo songs, Key-Off simulation, Damper resonance, 3 Effects, Metronome, 2x Line out 6.3 mm...

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585 €
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Aston Microphones Swift

Aston Microphones Swift; Universal Mic Mount without Rubber Bands; fits Mics from 40 bis 60 Diameter; two quick release spring clips; made of Aluminium, grade glass-fill nylon polymer and medical grade latex ("ShockStar" suspension); Dimensions: 145 x 60 x 170...

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55 €
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Audient iD44

20-in / 24-out desktop audio interface Fully metallic desktop housing, Control knobs made of solid, hand-milled aluminium, 4 Class A Audient console mic preamps, 60 dB gain, AD / DA converter of the highest class, 2 ADAT inputs and...

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569 €
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EQ Acoustics Spectrum 2 L5 Tile Black

Acoustic Absorber Material of the absorber's core: 100% polyester with textile cover, Very robust, Non-allergenic and doesn't contain irritants, Odour-free, Good efficiency in the medium and high frequency ranges, Wall and ceiling mounting is possible with the flexi-system (hook...

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170 €
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Universal Audio Apollo Thunderbolt 3 Card

Universal Audio Apollo Thunderbolt 3 Card; Expansion Card for Apollo Rack Interfaces; two Thunderbolt 3 Ports, 5 W bus power for all connected Thunderbolt 3 peripherals; up to 40 Gbit/s; System requirements: macOS Sierra/High Sierra or Windows 10 with Fall...

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499 €
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Cameo Studio PAR DTW

White light LED PAR With variable colour temperature and dim-to-warm function, Professional LED PAR for use on theater and drama stages or for object lighting, Dim-to-warm function ensures a dark orange light colour in the low brightness range by...

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333 €
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IK Multimedia UNO Synth

Monophonic analog synthesizer with step sequencer, arpeggiator and effects section Classic setup with 2 VCOs and noise generator, multimode filters, amps, 2 envelopes and LFO, Waveform VCOs Triangle, sawtooth and variable pulse width rectangle, Multimode filter with 12 dB...

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229 €
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Presonus Studio 1810

18 x 8 USB 2.0 audio interface 24 bits / 192 kHz, 2 front combo inputs Mic / Line / Inst (XLR / jack), 2 front combo inputs Mic / Line (XLR / jack), 4 XMAX Class A mic...

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