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Sweetwater Forums [Archived]

After 15 years of great discussions, the Sweetwater Forums are now closed and preserved as a "read-only" resource. For discussions about current gear, check us out on Facebook, YouTube, inSync, and our Knowledge Base.

Which Audio Interface

paularenson

Hi. Hoping people knowing about USB/Firewire and other audio interfaces will chime in here. (Or if I should ask this in the DAW forum, please let me know.)
I am a singer songwriter using a late model 27 inch imac. Primary software is Garageband. My setup will include 1 condensor mic (Rode NT-1), 1 dynamic (Shure SM57) for voice and guitar, also M-Audio ES 88 keyboard. At any one time 2 mics or 1 mic and keyboard needed for recording simultaneously. Have looked at models with Phantom power as follows
USB
1 Focus Rite Saffire and Focusrite Scarlett 2i2, the latter not yet here in Japan.
2 Presonus Audiobox
3 Yamaha Audiogram and 4 Tascam 122.
I hear that if I try to plug my USB keyboard into the MAC at the same time I have two mics into the USB interface, I may have trouble with Garageband unless using something called aggregate devices. Can anyone shed light on this?
Does anyone have good or bad to say about these or other interfaces?
Firewire
5 Desktop Konnect
This is about the only FW I can afford. Any opinons about this vs. above? Or others in the same price range?
Other
6 Mackie 402vlz3 Mixer
My reason for looking at the mixer is someone said it can double as a mixer for live concerts. They say this is my Intel MAC has a good sound card that can handle this. Salespeople at Apple store had no idea what I was talking about, even though this comes from 2 Macjams musicians. So I thought I had better ask musicians here.
Thanks!
paul in Japan
November 4, 2011 @07:13am
paularenson

Perhaps my question is not appropriate here? If so, where would be the best place? So far Konnect6 and Saffire look good as a Mac user bon a budget.
November 4, 2011 @09:41pm
Joe Muscara

It's not inappropriate, it's just that I don't know about the hardware you're asking about. Also, I've not heard of the problem you describe with multiple USB devices.
You could search around on other message boards and see if any of these devices are discussed, pro and con. I would try
https://discussions.apple.com/ Apple communities
http://www.macosxaudio.com/ (mostly their forums, but check their site out as well)
http://www.logicprohelp.com/ (Mostly about Logic but may apply)
as well as other Mac sites like Macworld and possibly MacNN and MacRumors. Then there's just the general internet search to see what else turns up.
Finally, if these are products Sweetwater sells, you might want to call and ask. I don't know how that works with you being in Japan, though.
November 5, 2011 @11:59am
paularenson

Great suggestions. Joe. Thank you!
November 6, 2011 @03:40am