USB audio interface options?

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I'm looking for a USB audio interface, but not for recording

Partly for using over Zoom, so I can get decent quality audio with separate volume control for at least 3 sources - electric guitar, speech microphone and possibly external line in.  So I'm looking to get better audio quality than I'm getting with a decent webcam, and with the ability to alter the volume of each source.

As well as for Zoom, I'd like to use this to expand the range of inputs on a desktop PC that is very limited right now.  But I won't be using it for recording, just practice.

If I can find something that will also work on a MacBook that would be great?

One thing that would be really useful, is if it had some decent guitar sims in it - really I just need a half decent clean sound with a bit of reverb!

I have of course Googled this, and can't honestly narrow down the options as there are so many choices.  Not looking to spend more than about £120 - £150 really.

Any suggestions - portable / easy to use would be great also?

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Comments

  • hollywoodroxhollywoodrox Frets: 1646
    Anything by focusrite I have a 2i2 I bought on here plugged in a MacBook 2010
      I have the line out from my Marshall mg101gfx going into it . I have the input from the focusrite and output via the headphone jack which feeds my studio monitors , this way I can turn up and down the volume of the piece I’m learning by the volume on the Mac toolbar and the volume of the guitar on the focusrite. I also had an IPad compatible focusrite too which is also excellent 
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  • LestratcasterLestratcaster Frets: 788
    edited July 19
    Not an interface but I think it can act as one, the Yamaha MG10XU is both that and a mixer. But I don't know how well it will do 2 way monitoring for the Zoom thing. I do online lessons and use the MG10 without USB, then take the monitor out via xlr into a Focusrite into the computer. I know its 2 devices but its the only way 2 way monitoring works. I simply have a Beta 58a to speak into, XLR out from my Kemper (or a condenser mic if doing acoustic) and then a dual 3.5mm to 1/4 stereo cable from iPad to play backing tracks. Works perfectly.

    Allen & Heath do similar and so do Focusrite but to get one with more than 2 inputs costs over £300.
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  • richhrichh Frets: 424
    Thanks, I was hoping for a one box solution if possible, ideally with easy to grab physical level controls to raise or lower volume on each source.

    There seem to be an amazing array of possibilities, but I'm trying to find something simple to use.

    The Focusrite that @hollywoodrox suggested may work, but I'd be wanting something with more than 2 channels and volume knobs I think...
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  • LestratcasterLestratcaster Frets: 788
    Yeah I know its a bit of a hassle to have 2 devices but its the only way it works for me.

    With an interface with several inputs you don't have much control over volume if I'm right, only preamp gain so if something is too loud then all you're doing it lowering the gain on the interface and you'll have to control the volume on the device you've plugged in. Depending on what you're using for the Zoom sessions I believe it only picks up analogue ports 1+2 as well. Haven't tried a 4 input Focusrite though.
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 6181
    richh said:
    Thanks, I was hoping for a one box solution if possible, ideally with easy to grab physical level controls to raise or lower volume on each source.

    There seem to be an amazing array of possibilities, but I'm trying to find something simple to use.

    The Focusrite that @hollywoodrox suggested may work, but I'd be wanting something with more than 2 channels and volume knobs I think...
    Usually the controls on the front control the input gain and the volume for monitoring is controlled on software mixes. Im not sure ive ever seen an interface with hardware output volume knowbs.

    You might be better off looking for a small mixer with integrated USB. 
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  • richhrichh Frets: 424
    Thanks, yes maybe just a small USB mixer and then some guitar preamp is the way, if no one box solution is there.
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  • LestratcasterLestratcaster Frets: 788
    richh said:
    Thanks, I was hoping for a one box solution if possible, ideally with easy to grab physical level controls to raise or lower volume on each source.

    There seem to be an amazing array of possibilities, but I'm trying to find something simple to use.

    The Focusrite that @hollywoodrox suggested may work, but I'd be wanting something with more than 2 channels and volume knobs I think...
    Usually the controls on the front control the input gain and the volume for monitoring is controlled on software mixes. Im not sure ive ever seen an interface with hardware output volume knowbs.

    You might be better off looking for a small mixer with integrated USB. 
    Yeah this is what the Focusrite control software does. And apparently you can do this loopback thing using the line ins but I couldn't get it to work with my setup lol so I just added a hardware mixer.
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  • hollywoodroxhollywoodrox Frets: 1646
    Focusrite do versions with 4 or 8 inputs too but as you expect the price rises with the more inputs 
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  • CirrusCirrus Frets: 6452
    Usually the controls on the front control the input gain and the volume for monitoring is controlled on software mixes. Im not sure ive ever seen an interface with hardware output volume knowbs.

    You might be better off looking for a small mixer with integrated USB. 
    Audient and the Focusrite Scarlett series both have hardware output volume knobs, I think the Audient is a better form for monitor controller use.

    I guess the thinking with most interfaces is that you'll be integrating it into a studio setup with a mixer/ monitor controller of your choice anyway, so it's not as common.
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  • StratavariousStratavarious Frets: 1576
    edited July 19
    I use a Yamaha MG10XU.. just great for general multi source mixing and interface.  I use it for professional TV and soundtrack stuff as well as zoom calls and band stuff.

    Plug and play with Mac.
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  • PolarityManPolarityMan Frets: 6181
    Cirrus said:
    Usually the controls on the front control the input gain and the volume for monitoring is controlled on software mixes. Im not sure ive ever seen an interface with hardware output volume knowbs.

    You might be better off looking for a small mixer with integrated USB. 
    Audient and the Focusrite Scarlett series both have hardware output volume knobs, I think the Audient is a better form for monitor controller use.

    I guess the thinking with most interfaces is that you'll be integrating it into a studio setup with a mixer/ monitor controller of your choice anyway, so it's not as common.
    Only for master or headphone..what I interpreted the OP as looking for is a per channel output level control. ie/ he wants to plug a guitar and a mic in and then using hardware controls affect how much of those is sent to the master mix.

    This is not the same thing obviously as changing the input gain or changing the headphone or master output.
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  • CirrusCirrus Frets: 6452
    Aha!

    Understood.
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