USB soundcard recommendations?


I’m looking for new sound card; I currently have a 10+ years old Tascam US-122MKii. Sound quality and latency are OK but build quality is so-so, and I’m going to have to take it on the road a lot more after the spring so I’m looking for something new and more sturdy.

I need just 2 audio channels really, but I do need MIDI DIN in/out, and I want it to be USB powered. I’m considering both Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 (2nd Gen) and Tascam US2x2. Opinions on those? Alternatives? Focusrite Clarett 2Pre USB anyone?

Thx for any feedback!


I’m very happy with my Motu mk4 Tom. Has allot of inputs and outputs and very reliable.
Also road proof and compact. I tape it with velcro to my stand.


Yeah, but that’s not bus powered, right?


Nope, to risky business. I once did it with my behringer 404 and the running daw track glitched every minute. Speaking of a distaster concert lol :joy:


Check the other topic here. Seems that behringer xr18 can be a soundcard also. Maybe interesting?


Never had that, not even with my old & cheap Tascam!


Could have been the power engine behind the stage on the street also, causing the fluctuations. But 5v on the USB ports is walking the thin line.


I have to say, I’m impressed with the Behringer. I got it for a backup for my Babyface. It’s really a bargain and matches the RME latency-wise.


The Focusrite Scareltt 2i4 is a good little interface, which seems happy being bus powered, provided the USB ports have enough drive (primarily for the phantom mic inputs). If it it proves to be an issue, a powered hub is the solution.


My band uses the XR18 as their mixing desk, so I decided to get one for myself because as @So_Godly mentioned, it works as a soundcard on your PC. So far, it has been very reliable. Nothing you can velcro to your keyboard, though. Just recorded my first song (solo project) with it too.


Hehe yeah I wouldn’t velcro that either :smiley:
Any idea what the latency is on the XR18 ?


I really like my Behringer UMC202HD’s. I bought them for $60 on sale - incredible value! There are some threads elsewhere discussing audio interface latency that conclude they perform as well as Scarlet 2i4’s. I’m thinking of getting the XR18 so I can control things with a tablet and take up less room than my Mackie CR1604 I’ve had for 20 years.


I do 256 sample buffers but have also tested 128 sample buffers with no glitching on X18. 16 channel (minus the USB Audio tracks for VSTi’s and media tracks) recording with C3 (or any DAW or host) and playing 3 to 4 VSTi racks simultaneously @ 256 samples. I use the BabyFace as a rule but the mixer would be a good backup for me too. All in all a good product for my usage, right features, price and so far reliabilty and another friend, @SteveK has made it the heart of his setup. He manages his multitrack media playback and VST instruments all from X18 with a combination of analog and USB digital audio channels configured. He is also experimenting with audio processing looped through C3 so he can use VST plugins for this purpose. The mixer has MIDI CC control as well and I have made some simple racks for remote controlling the available parameters from C3. Hope this helps as far as X18 goes.



I’ve been using the scarlet 2i4 1st and 2nd gen for live use for a while now for both guitar and keyboard work. Totally happy with it. It’s a good price and good quality sound.


Agreed on the Scarlett 2i4. when I got mine Focusrite were selling them via an EBay store for half price. So I got two so that I have spare.


I ended up getting a focusrite clarett 2pre usb. Sounds great, built like a tank and usb3 powered.

Tx for all reactions!