3 Interfaces We Run Into in a Commercial Studio Environment and Why

In the market for an interface and want to get something that will be useful for longer than the time it takes you to learn it? Here are a few units most people would consider “beginner interfaces” that still manage to sneak their way into professional studio environments.

Why might someone still see these so-called beginner interfaces in a professional studio environment? Because of their simplicity, of course. When you’re booking a studio, time is always one of your biggest enemies. Having a simple interface you know extremely well can save you tons of money on troubleshooting time. If you master one of these interfaces, you can be up and cooking in a professional studio in no time.

Focusrite Scarlett 2i2

A great interface for any aspiring recording engineer on a budget is the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2. With the 3rd generation model coming in at around $170, and older, used models even less than that, Scarlett interfaces are your best bet if money isn’t necessarily pouring in from that single you recorded on your phone last week. They are also just about as simple as an interface gets. If you were to go to school for audio recording, this would be the interface your teacher would recommend. Another benefit to learning a Focusrite is it’s also cheap to upgrade to a more versatile Scarlett unit once you find yourself needing more inputs and outputs. The 2i2 will get you started with two inputs, allowing you to record two sources at once, or experiment with stereo micing techniques.

SSL 2+

The SSL 2+ is a great starting point for someone looking to grow in the audio recording industry. It has two inputs that allow for mic/line recording with a HI-Z option as well. Both channels also feature a 4K legacy button that introduces a bit of SSL 4000 console color to your signal. Both Fever and Clear Lake house SSL2+’s as extra interfaces for producers to quickly run their mobile rigs with the mics and gear offered in the studios. They are trusted for their portability, durability, and simplicity.

Audient iD14

If you want to hit the ground running with something that will give you professional quality whether you’re in a studio or not, the Universal Audio Apollo Solo or Apollo Duo would be your best bet. By far the most respected out of all the basic interfaces, you won’t need to explain to anyone why you showed up with this unit. With the Duo starting around $1000, and the Solo starting at around half that price, it definitely is not your cheapest option. The money does get you better quality and some additional features less expensive interfaces don’t have. A couple of those features being an extra instrument input and onboard DSP for UAD plugins. Universal Audio is a very well respected name in the world of audio recording. Familiarizing yourself with their gear and plugins early in your audio journey can’t hurt.

No matter what interface you choose, it’s important to get as familiar with it as possible in order to seamlessly capture audio for whoever your clientele may be. Yes, that means actually reading the manual, pushing all the buttons, and turning all the knobs. You might just surprise yourself and learn something new.

Go to Top