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PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL Reviews

4.0 stars based on 35 customer reviews
Questions about the PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL?

Questions about the PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL?

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  • Jediael Oliveira
    from United States February 15, 2015Music Background:
    Recording Engineer, Live Sound Engineer, Pro Musician.

    AdioBox 1818VSL

    This is a great device. Converters are Great! latency with this isn't and issue at all. Just gotta learn how to use its DSP mixer for monitoring and you are home free.

  • Phemelo Moikabi
    from botswana ramotswa April 29, 2014Music Background:
    recording engineer,live sound engineer

    presonus audiobox 181vsl

    so far im happy with what im getting,its easy to use,im still working around to see what more i can do with it.

  • JET
    from Michigan, USA March 22, 2014Music Background:
    Singer, Songwriter, Recording Artist

    Fab Interface!!!!

    I use this interface daily. It has the most features and quality for its price range period! It works amazingly well and stands up to hard use. I have had no performance issues with the PC I have now. I do want to add that from my own experience, this unit does not seem to work well with my ivy bridge processor. I sent the interface in to be checked out as it was still under warranty. Sweetwater was terrific and very helpful. It passed inspection. Once it came back (which was really fast BTW) I had the same problem. I had considered selling it. I figured I was stuck with an expensive paperweight. In the meantime, I purchased a tower with a different processor. Just for kicks I hooked it up as a last ditch effort. To my surprise it functioned perfectly! I have used it ever since. Oddly enough the smaller more basic AudioBox will run with my ivy bridge lap top. That said, before buying, be sure the VSL1818 will play nice with your machine. Nothing runs on everything. I suspect some of the bad reviews are because your PC is not compatible. If you are looking for an affordable interface and you can verify this one will work, you really cannot go wrong with this product. It really is terrific!! I am very glad I kept it.

  • John Casko
    from Melbourne, FL January 27, 2014

    AudioBox 1818VSL is AWESOME

    I don't know how adding an audio interface could get any easier. Feature rich, versatile, easy to use, high quality, fantastic interface and built-in zero latency. It doesn't get any better than this. Together with the Studio One DAW, and the free HP-4 (which was delivered in only a week after I submitted the rebate form) this was money very well spent.

  • John Casko
    from Melbourne, Florida, USA January 19, 2014Music Background:

    1818VSL Works Great on Dell Laptop

    Installed on a Dell laptop with 64 bit Windows 7 and USB 2.0 ports. Runs perfectly with no problems. This unit replaces a FireStudio Project unit which I have used for years running on a Vista desktop computer. The very low latency of the 1818 is fantastic.

  • Bill Brightbottom
    from United States January 1, 2014Music Background:
    Pro Musician, Recording Engineer

    AudioBox 1818VSL

    This unit installed on Win 7 without any issues. Studio One Artist cane with this unit and so far I like it! I used to use Adobe Audition and decided to change DAW software. There is plenty of online tutorials and the presonus forums are excellent sources for getting familiar with their products. The sound I've recorded so far is amazing, crystal clear I have no complaints. My unit came with the HP 4 after sending in the rebate presonus sent it to me in a few days. I'm still learning but this unit is awesome!

  • Robert P.
    from Jasper, Texas September 30, 2013Music Background:
    Recording Engineer, Live Sound Engineer, Pro Guitar Player

    Will not work with alienware M17x laptops

    I use this at my church, works perfectly........But It was purchased to work with the alienware laptop, after countless hours on line and phone with alienware, presonus, and intel. It will not work with this specific laptop, under windows 7 64 bit, because of the USB 3.0 ports. Love the product, Just wanted to save anyone some time if they wanted use this product with an alienware laptop.

  • TM
    from LA, CA March 22, 2013Music Background:

    Best monitoring rig for the money.

    Okay so I don’t use this in the studio, I would still rather use something higher in quality like an Apogee Symphony system. But for live use… this thing is PERFECT. I should say 2 of the these things are perfect. 16x16 i/o, low latency verbs, the ability to fine tune the mix from an iPad, combo jacks on all inputs, in the front no less… perfect. Here’s how I use my rig: Macbook Pro Retina (very fast, no crashes), Pro Tools for the show and tracks, some processing done in there, about 50/50 split between MBPR and 1818VSL for DSP. Tracks get grouped into subs inside PT, Outs 1-4 are used for Monitor mixes, 5-16 are used to go to FOH. I thought FOH engineers would hate me for just giving them stems, but most of them love how much easier it makes their jobs. Just make sure you give them some extra gaff tape for their trouble. This is in a small rack with some wireless units, sits right next to the stage snake. Just have extra snakes just in case they have multiples around the stage. Sounds great, truly. Would love to use a nice A&H rig, but this is literally a small fraction of the price and the quality difference is much smaller than the price difference.

  • Tracy Franklin
    from Columbus, Oh USA November 16, 2012Music Background:
    Praise team, choir member, recording artist, lead vocalist and producer

    Moving Forward

    this thing is awsome!! my recording experiences havnt been the same since my recent purchase of the 1818vsl and I.......AM .....MOVING ......FORWARD!!

  • Lucas Johnson
    from Murphy, NC November 14, 2012

    Awesome with auria and iPad!

    I use this along with a small USB hub (around 8 bucks on eBay) plugged straight into the iPad. I know a lot of folks have been researching this, so hopefully this review will help. I use the iPad 3.
    I had been using the io dock by alesis up until a few months ago and was not too pleased with it. Only having two channels was frustrating, especially having eight microphones on my drum kit. The preamps were also not the best. The presonus quickly solved both of those problems, with eight inputs ready to use out of the box and excellent, quiet preamps. I'm able to record 8 inputs no problem, with no dropouts whatsoever, and no loss of sound quality. 24 bit, 96 kHz. It sounds great. A guitar or bass plugged straight into channel 1 or 2 also sounds great, no amp needed. I was worried about monitoring on the iPad, but a set of earbuds plugged into the iPad's headphone jack works great and with no latency issues. I can't comment on the headphone out on the unit.
    The interface is great. If you're looking for 8 or more channels to use With the iPad or a computer, I don't see why you would buy something else. The price is the best you'll find for something of this quality. Also, auria is the best daw for the iPad. Get it. You won't regret it.

  • Russ
    from Fl August 30, 2012Music Background:

    Great interface

    I have an iPad, and got the Auria app, so now I need an interface. I liked the presonus product lines. The AudioBox 1818VSL fits my needs. I also just got a new laptop. Laptops now have the power of the desktop. Either way, iPad, or laptop, I basically have a portable recording studio. It just works for me.

  • Dale
    from San Luis Obispo, CA March 30, 2012Music Background:
    Musician, recording eng., live sound...

    PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL

    The AudioBox integrated with Virtual Studio Live and Presonus Studio One 2 Professional is a package that can not be beat! Versatility, power and ease of use WOW!

  • Duceman
    from Fayetteville, NC November 18, 2011Music Background:
    Recording Engineer, Live Sound Engineer, Pro Musician


    I waited for over a month to get this rig! When I got it, I stayed up all night playing around with it and it worked RIGHT OUT OF THE BOX!!!!! Great piece. The best thing about it is the USB connectivity to my MAC BOOK. Thanx PreSonus & Thanx Sweetwater for the support.... Now on with the Music!!!!!

  • Don Kuchta
    from Kansas November 12, 2011Music Background:
    Gigging Musician


    Just got mine in 2 day ago. It rocks! Easy set up and installation. Zero issues syncing my other devices. And...It sounds great! The VSL software and fat channel work flawlessly.

  • Matthew Wirz
    from Sacramento, CA October 5, 2011

    I forgot the most important feature that had me sold.

    USB!!!! Finally an interface that has all the features I need and it has a USB port.

  • Matthew Wirz
    from Sacramento October 5, 2011Music Background:
    Drummer, Am. recording, Guitar, Singer

    I Can't Wait

    FINALLY!!! I have been waiting a long time for any company to create a product that meets ALL of my needs for recording. Rack space, 8 front inputs and gain control, midi, adat, EVERYTHING! Thank you PreSonus, I will be purchacing this product Immediately.

  • Ralph
    from Columbus, OH, USA January 30, 2014Music Background:
    Composer, Arranger, Musician

    Superb value

    Yes there are better sounding AI's, many with more bells and whistles - when you go to an exponential increase in budget. But in this price range, you'll be hard pressed to find a better combination of features, sound, flexibility, and value than the Audiobox1818VSL. I'm a big fan of what Presonus stands for, and this unit continues the hallmark of their corporate mission: Simplification. Faster workflow, fewer headaches, loads of options (translate: VALUE), all of which yields great end results. I'd give this unit 5 stars, but there is one thing every potential buyer needs to know: When you power down your computer, shut the Audiobox off as well. When you power up, turn the Audiobox on AFTER everything has booted up. Otherwise, it won't recognize the USB port as being active. It's a simple process that is not (currently) properly documented by Presonus. Other than that nothing, I highly recommend this piece of equipment. Presonus has GREAT tech support. Couple that with the superb personalized service from Sweetwater, and you won't be disappointed.

  • Shawn
    from Mitchell, NE September 4, 2013Music Background:
    Recording Engineer / Pro Musician

    Great Piece of Gear!

    Got this while I was in a pinch and turns out.. I love it! The pre-amps are true and clean. Quite a bit of dynamic range. Great way to add more inputs to your set up, and can add an additional eight more with ADAT. I don't use the software that came with it, but it does have a wide range of features. Works flawlessly with Pro Tools 9 and up. Given the chance I'd definitely make this purchase over again.

  • Sergio Miranda Bonilla
    from Leon, Gto. Mexico November 28, 2012Music Background:
    Semi-pro musician, part-time movile recording engineer and producer

    A solution for Windows users

    Firewire ports are in retreat in the PC world. Audiobox 1818VSL is an quality affordable USB alternative for multichannel recording and management (2 pream/instrument, 6 preamp/line, two SPDIF and 8 ADAT channels). VirtualStudio software is simple and intuitive, and ASIO drivers integrate seamlessly with any DAW (in my case, Cockos Reaper). The ultra-low latency monitoring is managed directly from the driver. Minimum system requirements establish Core Duo processor, but the Audiobox works smoothly on a Pentium-based PC D and a Centrino laptop. So far I have noticed some glitches in laptop monitoring (possibly, a bad word clock connection or the Centrino processor), but these glitches are not recorded, they are only monitored. Excellent alternative.

  • Nate
    from IN June 6, 2012Music Background:
    Engineer, Musician, Composer

    Seems great so far!

    Rock solid drivers on my i7 laptop and Cubase 5.5! Preamps do distort easily, but knocking down the level a couple "clicks" on the gain knob easily fixes that while still providing plenty of level. For the price, this interface has a lot to offer with 8 preamps and 8 channel ADAT I/O. The VSL features are a great addition to and provide a great sound for tracking. I'm hitting 1.5-2.3 ms latency at 64 samples with a full 45 track mix with over 50 plugins running and I couldn't be happier! Being able to connect my Profire2626 via ADAT for 16 simultaneous XLR inputs/pres is just icing on the cake!

  • dajrt
    from February 14, 2012Music Background:
    Producer, pro musician


    Wow!!! The sound is realy GREAT and very good. I'm so very happy with the quality of sound of this gear.

  • Dr Bomar
    from earth December 21, 2014Music Background:
    goes way back, smoke machine must be on...


    cool unit, easy to use, not much to break, xlr/phone jack goood, single rack space, betterrr. seem to record pretty clean with protools too, hooked up my behringer adda 8 port light pipe adat for 16 or 18 analogs in, not bad for what i do, always live recordings

  • Customer
    from Union, NJ May 29, 2014Music Background:
    Producer, Recording Engineer, Songwriter

    It's Awesome!

    It has everything you need! I don't have a lot of complaints other than that I can't get my VSL software to work on my Mac. I'll probably have to call the company. But other than that, it's rock solid. I love it!

  • Jerry Palmer
    from Fort Collins, Co October 7, 2013Music Background:
    Pro Musician

    PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL

    I needed a new interface..I wanted something other than a 2 channel or 4 channel to record with. At times i need several microphones at once. This was perfect ! After a little bit of work understanding the software, I was recording and it has worked great. I did have some problems at first, but called Mark Bruhn (sales Eng) and my questions were answered by him. Another time I had questions, I was put in touch with Technical support and questions were answered on the spot. The tech support is worth it !! Thanks Sweetwater !!

  • Jim
    from New York May 17, 2013Music Background:

    PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL

    sound quality is great and no appreciable latency - plenty of inputs and relatively easy to navigate

  • Eric
    from Columbus, OH February 20, 2012Music Background:
    Recording & Live Sound Engineer/Educator

    Nice, but.....

    I bought this for my live rig to record events. Love the size, love the features...

    -LOVE the K-System metering! Very relevant for live recording.
    -Front panel inputs are great for me so I can easily re-patch my snake (my ADAT mic pre also has front panel inputs)
    -USB lets me swap my Firewire hard drives easily without a total shut-down and re-patch.

    -I had to assign everything to hear anything. Huh? The front panel headphone out that doesn't let you hear the main mix by default? Why? Setup is confusing.
    -The software shows inputs in this order (mic pres, ADAT, SPDIF), but in reality ADAT 1 & 2 are the SPDIF L & R. Software ADAT 3 is actually hardware ADAT 1, and so on..... (Hopefully they can fix this with a software update)
    -When I reboot without disconnecting, the interface refuses to be seen unless I turn it off and on again.
    -The mic press are noisy by my standards. To be fair, my main recording rig is high end stuff....but I've heard better pres in this price range.

    Ultimately I am happy with it for what I need it for - most of my inputs are ADAT or line level, so the inputs are okay for that. And as a professional engineer that has been doing this for over a decade I am okay with having to check the routing, etc. But if you're a beginner at recording there are probably better interfaces to start with...

  • Scott
    from Michigan October 2, 2015Music Background:
    Professional performer/recording engineer

    Be Warned!!

    As of September 2015, the Aubiobox VSL line (including the AB22VSL, and AB44VSL) may not function as advertised. Person us has officially discontinued support and development of these devices proprietary VSL software

    I was strung along, like many people who had purchased these devices, for more than two years, by presonus, as they promised to update the AB line to USB 3.0 functionality. We waited and waited, while our gear depreciated, until they announced the discontinuation of support.

    Very bad customer support. Read the forums on these before investing your money. They do NOT function as advertised. They MIGHt work with your setup IF you have an older, USB 2.0 computer, with an OS from 2012 or earlier.

    If you have, or intend to have, a new computer or OS, either Mac, or Windows, look elsewhere.

  • Customer
    from Denver, CO March 4, 2014Music Background:
    freelance audio engineer, musician.

    Works with USB 2.0 ONLY!!!!

    PreSonus wrote the VSL drivers to work with a USB 2.0 feature only called isochronous streaming. The problem is that most laptops now are going to all USB 3.0 ports, and most of them are Intel. Intel didn't follow the USB spec and doesn't support this legacy USB 2.0 function (which few USB 2.0 devices use). There is no fix for this and your 1818VSL just became a $500 paper weight. PreSonus pulled all their developers from writing driver updates to the 1818VSL and there is no work around.

    Don't get me wrong, this device is great if you can acutally get it to work, but PreSonus support (or lack thereof) is terrible. Their advice is usually something like "go buy a Mac".

    PreSonus makes some great stuff, and StudioOne is becoming one of the leading DAW's on the market. This device has some cool features and it worked great before I had to buy a new laptop. I sold it and got a FocusRite 18i20.

  • Christopher
    from Margate, FL 33063 January 13, 2014Music Background:
    Sound Engineer, Producer

    Do not buy if you purchased a late 2013 apple computer!!!

    I am giving this audio interface a generous 1.5... I purchased it about 2 years ago and its caused nothing but problems. First off, the main output knob was never calibrated correctly or glued on at all, which caused horrible pops and cracks when changing gain levels in both the headphone and main output channels. The signal meter LED lights never accurately displayed the actual correct signal level. The drivers for newer mac OS were poorly designed, lots of problems with pops and crackling while recording. Just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, I buy a brand new iMac for Christmas, only to figure out days later that all (late 2013) models of Macbook air, Macbook Pro, and iMac no longer work with the Audiobox 1818vsl... If you work with a Mac, do yourself a solid and stay away from this death trap! The only reason I gave it a 1.5 is because it actually lasted 2 years without physically dying on me...

  • Customer
    from May 10, 2012

    Could be good....

    Known issues with the preamps distorting and poor metering that are still not fixed after months. According to Presonus a fix is coming........one day. Many people are returning these - have a look at the 'refurbished' or 'factory checked' cheaper ones.

  • Jarod
    from Ohio September 29, 2016Music Background:
    Multi-Instrumentalist/Basement Studio Owner

    Don't Say We Didn't Warn You

    I saw the warnings, and still I bought the PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL. It would not connect to my USB drive, and after a couple weeks of trying everything I could to get it to work, I returned it and am now buying an interface that is more reliable. Interfaces should be as accessible as possible, not rendered useless just because the user has a certain type of computer or USB. If this product works for you, that's great, but if you're thinking of buying the PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL, then keep your receipt. There's a likelihood you'll have to return it.

  • Customer
    from NH April 28, 2016Music Background:
    Rock and Blues for 50 years.

    Don't buy one

    The 1818 VSL will not support the newest Mac El Capitain 10.11. PreSonus has probably the the worst customer service I have ever experienced. They will never answer their help line phone. After a month of e-mailing back an forth with them with no results, I turned to the Sweetwater tech staff who quickly told me that no, it won't work with my computer and furthermore no future updates are planned to make it do so. The good part of this experience was Sweetwater. The unit was returned without a problem, I will always choose them.

  • Customer
    from October 9, 2015

    Buy one if you like noise in your recordings

    Truly disappointed in this unit. Thought it would be perfect for my home studio, but it's not even close. Have spent way too much time with PreSonus tech support, which could have been spent making music if this interface worked as advertised. Steer clear if you have a MAC based home studio. Recordings are full of pops and cracks. Dowloaded the latest 'fix' today and it didn't work. PreSonus has no fix and I am out $500

  • Joshua Mercer
    from May 17, 2015Music Background:
    Music Minister

    Drop Presonus, pick up Behringer X-series

    Failure to edit a scribble strip...why is this even something I have to write? A scribble strip editor even exists in the demo on mobile devices. ZERO software update support for YEARS...need I go on?

    Behringer has FAR surpassed this paperweight I bought years ago.

  • Customer
    from March 4, 2014

    Move on

    If you have a newer computer move on. This will not work with USB3 ports. Presonus have not updated the drivers in 2 years and blame every one else for the issues (Intel, Apple, Microsoft etc). Try a RME or a Focusrite. They work just fine on the same systems, inc USB3!

Questions about the PreSonus AudioBox 1818VSL?

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