The Audient iD22 is the hub of my project studio, and for good reason. The I/O options are stellar for making the most of all my recording gear, and when I need to use the iD's pres, it doesn't disapoint. The mix software is well-desisgned and intuitive. Often overlooked, it lets me pick and choose exactly the set up I need for recording and mixing. I couldn't be happier.
I have recently made the Audient iD22 monitoring system the center of my studio, and it is fantastic! The headphone amp is loud and sounds very detailed. Having everything I need at my fingertips really keeps the creative process flowing. The Audient mic pres are exceptional, and this has been a great addition for high quality recording!
Perfect Mobile Rig, Amazing Central Hub
When I bought the iD22, I was originally just looking for a 2 speaker, clean D/A, with a big knob. I also loved dim and cut, and programmable function buttons. I wasn't really planning on using the preamps except in quick mobile situations as I have some pretty nice ones already. However, the preamps on this thing have blown me away! I now use them as my go-to pre's for tracking certain vocals, acoustic guitars, and percussion instruments. They have a nice smooth tone that is very easy to mix, and plenty of headroom.
When people walk into my studio, they see all this great gear and ask me what my favorite piece is. I know it sounds crazy, since I own some great pieces (Apogee converters, API pre's, various Neumann mics, AKG 414eb, Vox and Boogie amps, etc..) but I always say the iD22! It's become irreplaceable, and I wouldn't even think twice about buying a new one if anything happened to mine.
I only have 2 gripes about the iD22, and one has already been fixed. Firstly, the software was a bit buggy at first. I did run into some clocking issues with the old firmware, but Audient is really good about keeping their stuff up to date so this is no longer an issue. The second issue is no Thunderbolt or USB 3. While I haven't yet run into any real bandwidth issues, it would be nice to know I have something a bit more future-proof. I'm sure Audient will release something that meets these needs down the line, and when they do you can bet I'll upgrade.
Overall, I can gaurantee you will be satisfied with the iD22 if this is the route you take. There are a ton of great portable interfaces out there and for that we are extremely lucky, but this little guy has made me really happy.
This is an amazing piece of machinery for the home studio.
Great sound and very easy to work with right out of the box.
High End in every sense.
I purchased the Audient after reading reviews. I had an Apollo Quad and enjoyed it, I grew tired of the expense plugins which was the purpose for the purchase. I wanted a smaller interface as well for traveling purposes. The Apollo has some top notch converters as well as preamps, so choosing another interface would be a task. I ordered the Audient and waited to compare and the Audient blew the UAD Apollo out of the water. I use Mogami cables, and run a pair of HS8's and Mixcubes in my studio, the moment I plugged in the Audient the sound was crystal clear and I dare say there was more depth, I threw some of my own mixes and heard delay and reverb tails I did not even notice with the Apollo. Think of the Audient as a mini Analog Desk, the pre amps are amazing clear but have analog tone and sound pretty nice when you push them just a bit. Warm, rich, and deep sound. This price point there is no competition out there and being able to manual control everything on the board is awesome. I really wish Audient went firewire instead of USB to enable daisy chaining. Great interface, great prices, pristine tone.
Simply The Best!
The Audient iD22 AD/DA Interface and Monitoring System is simply the best solution and technology that can be purchased in its price point. It has a simple and very functional console for any small studio or individual and a powerful, fully integrated monitoring software system. In fact, its visual simplicity is somewhat deceiving as it delivers consistent high quality performance with professional monitoring, flexibility, and user-desired application customization.
Iíve owned this interface for almost a year now and use it exclusively for my voice over work. I am meticulous about the equipment and technology I bring into my studio as the quality of my recordings for my voice over clients is paramount. This gem has performed flawlessly and truly provides the professional recording quality my clients expect from me and from a professional sound studio. In fact, the quality of the recordings that come from the studio using the Audient iD22 in my home are indistinguishable from the quality I get when I work at the top recording studios in Los Angeles.
Prior to my voice over career I worked in a company that used sophisticated signal processing hardware and software so I have a little more than the average understanding of the technology in the Audient iD22. Hereís a bit of techno-speak from my research and experience with Audientís iD22.
After months of research I decided on the iD22 because of its functionality and because of its technology. Most donít pay much attention to the processors that take in the analog signals from a microphone or instrument, convert it to digital signals for your DAW of choice (Pro Tools 10 is in my studio) and then convert the digital signals back to analog for you to replay on your headphones, monitors, or amplifiers. The AD/DA converters may be the most important technology in your interface.
I run my microphones (Neumann TLM 49 and Sennheiser 416) through a Universal Audio tube preamp and then into the iD22. I researched the iD22 to make sure the signal path and sound performance was an enhancement to these and compared the Burr-Brown AD/DA converters Audient engineered into their iD22. I believe Audient uses the same converters in their incredible industry standard professional consoles, as does much of the industry. I wonít go into the conversion technology detail here but if youíre interested you can read a lot about Burr-Brown converters online. Just let me say that my research Ė and after a year my personal experience - clearly demonstrated this pivotal technology required for truly professional recorded sound quality is among the best available at any cost. Period.
In addition to the incredible, simple, easy to use design, top quality technology, and spectacular performance, the customer service at Audient is equally spectacular. Recently I had a problem with one of the electric outlet prongs on the power supply Ė it became dislodged and stuck in the outlet (I know Ė bizarre!). I sent an email to Audient at midnight and by 8:00 AM I had a response and a replacement was in the mail to me. Wow!!! Other than the pros at Sweetwater, who handles customer service like this anymore!
Simply put, this product is amazing. In fact, if anyone is interested in setting up a professional sound recording studio and doesnít want to break the bank to break the bank investing in the setup, the iD22 is an excellent starting point that can get you started cost effectively with absolute assurance of professional usability, performance, and sound recording quality. At this price point and frankly at twice the price there isnít anything in the market that can compare.
Congrats and big thanks to Audient for offering this incredible product. Simply the best!
Positive Audiobook Asset
The Audient iD22, paired with a Neumann TLM 103 mic has become the core of my audiobook production suite. This is an upgrade from a humble startup phase using a USB mic.
In fairness, I have to say the USB mic provided an affordable way to get started and 7 books for ACX/Audible were produced using that setup. The audio quality was fairly good, but there were some definite drawbacks. One was the inability to adjust the mic level and another was a tendency of the lower-priced AD/DA converter to generate digital artifacts in the recorded audio.
Since upgrading, the iD22 has eliminated both of those problems and provided some additional benefits as well. To begin, the mic pres are great performers. They allow the TLM 103 to capture the most subtle nuances of a performance with no noticeable coloration. The built-in high-pass filter is excellent, removing a solid 15 dB of low-level, low-frequency noise. The noise floor in my custom booth is typically -50 to -54 dB without the filter and -64 to -66 dB with it. That is 15 dB of unwanted garbage that never makes it into the recording. The high-quality AD/DA converter produces clean, consistent digital signals to the computer
Another plus is the ability to switch from headphones to studio monitors without a lot of software manipulation. Just turn down the mic feed to the main mix and I can play segments for a guest or client through the monitors. I find the final QC listen-through is better through the monitors also, as it more closely approximates the way a listener might hear it. Plus I can evaluate the overall audio and performance characteristics of the finished file while making a final check for accuracy.
As my use of the iD22 thus far has been exclusively for audiobook production, I have not had occasion to check out the digital input/output capabilities.
Overall, I am very pleased with the performance of the Audient iD22. It has both improved the quality of my production efforts and facilitated the production process.
Finally found the best Home Recording Interface!
The title says it all! Haha
I've had many interfaces, and they were all good, but I could never find one that had every necessary feature a home recording studio needs without having to pay like $1,000! Until I stumbled upon Audient. Just beautiful, beautiful preamps they really blew me away plus all the features that the ID22 brings is so awesome! This is how audio interfaces should be made! I was not disappointed at all! I was able to pay it thanks to Sweetwaters 3 easy payment plan. BUY THIS INTERFACE FROM SWEETWATER! You will not be disappointed :)
I replaced my Motu 896HD with the Audient Id22. This is by far my best purchase in 2015. The converters are excellent. The mic pre's are quiet, even at high gain. The pre's don't color the sound, they're very clean and clear. I'm running windows 7 with Sonar 8.53, and had no issues loading the firmware or drivers. Runs flawlessly. Routing will take a few minutes to figure out, but nothing serious. Probably one of the best feature is that you can bypass the Audients mic pre's if you have outboard pre's that you'd like to use. I did a ton of research on this so I'll save everyone some time. To bypass the Audient's mic pre's, you simply plug your external mic pre into the Audients Return. That's it. The headphone output is great. The DI is really nice, tons of gain. This unit has really improved my recording quality 100 fold.
Full of good sound and handy features
I don't need a high channel count, so I sold my 8-channel interface to move into the ID22. It pairs with my UA 4-710D via ADAT which gives me 4 more preamps and 4 additional line ins. The ability to do inserts on each Audient channel, to control two pairs of monitors and get great sound was a big step up. The ID22 has been fully stable on my Win7x64 system for 4 months now. The pres are clear and clean, the layout is uncluttered, and I understand from Audient that it is class compliant for use with my new iPad (although all features may not be available when used with the iPad). Well done Audient.
I wanted to point out how important the analog insert feature is because it is often just glanced over.
This is very rare in an audio interface with built-in preamps. It means you can insert say a hardware compressor or EQ in between the preamp and the converters BEFORE it gets into the digital domain.
But also it means that if you are using an outboard preamp, you can completely bypass the preamps in this and go straight to the converters, something that is very hard to find in digital interfaces where Line inputs are usually just pads (this is why the gain control affects the line input). You can still send a line signal through the preamp if you prefer.
I see this unit as two things in once: a pair of superb Audient preamps, and a pristine computer audio interface. Both can be treated separately (you can use just the preamps into a mixer or another interface if you wanted to, using the Insert Sends).
The Right Choice
I searched around for a long time before purchasing this interface, and now that I've completed my payments, I am happy to say I made the right choice. What I like about this unit is that it seems geared to "out of the box" mixing and recording. My mindset used to be "don't worry, I can fix it in post" and I would record and have a ton of work to do with all of my tracks. The Audient's insanely clear pre amps, phase switch, -10 db switch and hi-pass filter do a lot to get the right sound, during production. Not to mention that both channels are fitted with insert points, post-preamp, pre-A/D conversion. What a flexible and useful feature. I have been recording vocals and using a Keeley guitar compressor with the insert points and I am having a blast! The outputs and inserts are balanced OR unbalanced outputs, so everything works exactly how you want it to. Using guitar pedals as outboard gear is just cool, fun and easy. Also, since I bought this unit, I haven't been able to stop coming up with ideas to expand my set-up. I'll stop now so you can buy it.
I get it now
This wasn't love at first sight/use. I had my issues with this unit upon first installation, because the mixer software doesn't necessarily install ready to go from the gate, but I figured it out, and am now in love. The conversion on this really is a step above my previous unit, more clarity and dynamic range, and the stereo field also seems wider. The mono and difference summing buttons being accessible with the hardware function keys on this unit is a life saver for mixing as well. Preamps are great, but I love the direct insert for my own external gear as well. First class unit at a great price. Once you get through the initial software setup, and workout the technical kinks with the software mixer routing, this unit is wonderful.
First, let me say that the units construction is solid.
Yes the preamps sound fantastic; clear, true to your microphone's characteristics.
Audience designed well thought out inserts, returns and alternate outputs for both tracking and mastering.
The ID software is intuitive and well designed. It includes accurrate software /hardware metering which you can rely on when recording or mastering. The talkback, mute or dim features are easy to use and can be customized to your preference. The software phase switch and mono buttons are ideal in checking phase issues and stereo separation.
Lastly it's a stable interface, I have put it through it's paces changing sample Frequency and it takes just a few seconds to sync up.
Worth every penny.
Running on Mac OS 10.10.1 Yosemiti
Pristine audio interface with everything a poor man's home studio could need or wish for. Check the features this covers all the bases for me, and probably will for your needs if you are wanting to step up to professional interface land. I've yet to see any bad reviews and it works like a dream. Drivers are rock solid not one crash so far. better drivers than Apollos and cheaper. Who needs thunderbolt, not me. USB 2 is more than adequate for us home guys tracking low instances at once. I used to be against USB but Have seen and experienced the light. FireWire is dying and has always given me issues. Do it.
I have tried and owned many interfaces, Apogee, Focusrite, Antelope, m-audio & many, many others. Bottom line, none touch this. It's sonically in the same league as the higher end(Apogee, Antelope), but at a fraction of the cost. RME Babyface is literally the only competitor for iD22.
Just Do It!
Changing audio interfaces is scary. My Apogee Duet FW didn't like
Pro Tools 11 and all the conversion cable for Thunderbolt. Love the return to insert my LA610. Very stable. Very good support from England. Love having knobs and no breakout cable. Looks awesome too and doesn't take up as much space as the Crimson.
A true value purchase!
There are so many choices out there and this and this unit is simply put; GREAT! Clear defined sound, mobil, solidly build, intuitive, stable... I could go on and on. If you are reading this and wondering which path to take, look no further and purchase the iD22. You will not be sorry. TRUE VALUE!!
The Best in its Class
Wow, plain and simple. This is a fantastic piece of equipment. With true pre's instead of chip versions, you get a smooth, clean, powerful sound. And with an extremely high quality DAC this thing will drive your monitors like nothing else. I had a Focusrite Scarlett and it couldn't move my monitors 5 inch woofers. I hooked this thing up and all of a sudden my woofers were vibrating like crazy and I could actually hear low ends properly. Not to mention every sound was now crisp, clear, powerful, and all around tight. It even drives my headphones well. I've got what I thought were pretty bright phones, but they've really smoothed out with this thing.
My mixing is easier, recording is easier, and listening to music is just amazing, I'm blown away by this product. 600 bucks is a steal for this kind of quality.
World class quality, solid build, and a slick design. It integrated flawlessly into my home studio.
Audient, you have my future business. Quality yet affordable, you guys seem to have really put your all into this. It's very clear that you planned this out carefully and truly considered the needs of engineers and musicians alike. It's clear that you took your console experience and expertise and brought that to the drawing board when designing this. Absolutely awesome.
One thing though, it's not enough to lose a star, but in the future, a midi IN would be a fantastic addition. That being said, there were interfaces I didn't buy because they didn't have midi, clearly, that wasn't the case in this instance, this is such a great interface it can get away without the "jack of all trades" stuff, it's a master of it's class.
Great Sound. Great Monitoring.
I have owned the ID22 for about two weeks now and so far I am very impressed with it's performance. The monitoring is extremely crisp and clear. It has become so much easier to EQ and mix the recordings that I make with the output sounding so transparent. The headphone amp is also excellent, bringing clarity to your phones and allowing easy headphone mixes. The recordings I have done so far, I have used a Summit Audio tube DI box in front of the pres. The sound that I am getting is excellent. I have not used the pres direct at this point, so I can't really speak about that. I do know that with the DI box everything sounds great. The Audient was not my first choice, I tried an Apogee Duet first, with lots of issues. Danielle Cummings at Sweetwater helped me and made the process as easy as it could be and did an excellent job at helping me out. I had the Audient up and running seamlessly on my 2009 macbook pro in under five minutes. Everything just worked. I need my interface to work easily. The last thing I need is connectivity issues when inspiration strikes to do some recording. This piece is solid. You will get great quality recordings and awesome monitoring with the Audient ID22. I would speak about the rest of the features but I have not used them yet. It's nice to know that they are there, if I ever have the need for ten inputs I can go there. Love this interface!
Not only is this a great little standalone interface for a home or live studio rig -- it's also a great way to add a couple of top-notch preamps and pristine mix monitoring to a larger studio setup. There must be hundreds of recordists out there who are not using the coax S/PDIF ins and outs on their focusrite or presonuse or m-audio (etc.) interface. With a simple optical-to-coax converter (for about the price of a lunch) you can use the iD22 as a monitor controller that greatly improves your DAC in the bargain. You also get 2 of audient's fantastic preamps (and ADCs) for just a little more money than if you got yourself a mico. What I love about this setup is I can still use the built-in preamps and conversion on my focusrite for my talkback mic, my headphone mixes, and plenty of extra inputs while still providing really high level input and output via the Audient for my critical tracking and mixing. And I can take my show on the road by simply unplugging 2 digital lines from the back of the iD22 and tossing it in a backpack.
I had a tech issue with the digital ins and outs (I was wanting to take the inputs via ADAT and the output via S/PDIF -- incredible that it can do this). I was only seeing the first 4 ADAT channels. I reported the problem via email and got a reply within just a few hours with an update to the firmware that fixed the problem. That's top-notch tech support.
Did I mention it sounds great? Maybe I should have said that first... I like the preamps so much I've ordered the ASP880.
I would say if you're currently using one of the countless good USB or firewire interfaces, but are feeling like you really should upgrade to one of the more top-tier units, save yourself a thousand dollars and think about adding an iD22 to the setup you've already got! For me, it really was a no-brainer.
A very simple, stable device that has a one standout characteristic: SOUNDS GREAT!
I've used several mic pre's over the years in front of an interface, but the iD22 solves that problem by including really excellent pre's in the box.
Very smooth, clear sound that doesn't require much processing.
The software it comes with is simple and stable and I really like how you have a lot of controls right on the front panel... no menu diving to turn on and off phantom power, etc.
I would say that if you have a small project studio and are thinking about a mic pre and interface combo, consider the iD22. It does both things superbly.
The other day, my Presonus firestudio died on me after 6 years. Keep in mind, that was the only interface I've ever had, so I was VERY familiar with how that thing sounded.
I just got this little guy in the mail and WOW. First thing I thought was cool was the little USB key it comes with to download the drivers. This was a pleasant little surprise because I never heard about that coming with the devise.
Anyways, the second I played a track I was very familiar with, my mind was blown. I heard high end detail that I've never heard before, I heard depth in the low end I didn't even know existed, the vocals sounded so nice and airy. It was incredible. I haven't recorded anything through it yet, but I'm sure I'll be happy with the results.
I remixed a song that I've been working on for the past week, and it translated to my car speakers/earbuds WAY better than when I was mixing with my presonus. And that's just after one night of having the thing.
Definitely an awesome upgrade from entry level interfaces. I keep hearing it competes with the big guys to, like apogee.
If 10 inputs and outputs (through optical) is enough for you. Then do yourself a favor and buy one.
As good as advertized
Similar to a review below, I also brought this as a replacement/upgrade to the ubiquitous 003, whose pres and conversion I had long been bypassing w/the RME ADI2. I'll spare you all the details, but the DA/monitor section is definitely a cut above. With the same speakers and headphones as before, I'm hearing far more detail. the pres are great too (already sort of had the clean preamp covered with others), and the AD is better than I had with the RME ADI2 (more extension in the lows and clarity in the mids). If you're looking to go "serious" on an interface, and are ok w/ 2in at the start, do this.
Fantastic - Just like the console
In the past I have owned an Audient ASP 8024 36 channel console for a remote system that I operated and absolutely loved the desk. Great pre's, excellent routing, and a killer monitor section. After purchasing and using the iD22 for a week now I can honestly say the exact same things about this unit!
I was in the market for an input/monitor devise for my small home PT setup having previously used a 003 console there. I looked at all the current crop of sub 1K units and came upon the iD22. The decision finally came between the Apollo Twin units or the Audient. For me, the deciding factor was audio quality. Having used the Audient desk in the past I had a good idea of what the mic pre's would sound like but was unsure about the monitor section so I rang up Audient in the UK. It was 6 pm their time and they answered on the first ring! I was able to speak with someone about the specifics of the DSP monitor section and was pleased to learn that although different from the ASP, it was built with the same sonic profile and specs as the desk. (The difference is the DSP control of the section tied with the software). The Apollo units sound good, but not near the clean power of the Audient monitor section and pre's. The Apollo does offer the neat trick of plug-ins on the input section, but I felt that was negated by the iD 22's insert point architecture. The pre-ADC insert points are a huge advantage and allow the simple use of outboard gear in the signal chain with a true balanced circuit.
Overall I would say nothing comes close to the sound and build quality of this unit in the price range, and I am very happy with the purchase and of course the great service by Matt E. my Sweetwater engineer.
It's so serious...!!
This unit is a great addition to my home studio. The sound is very clean, the controls are nicely laid out, the look is vintage & modern at the same time-amazing. I haven't even gotten to the sends/returns or optical yet, I'm still in awe over the mic pres & line ins. One mic pre alone in the ID22 is worth at least twice what the unit is priced at.
Aside from the gear, this is a company that really get's it-they listen to what the customer wants & work to bring it too fruition-remember their ASP008? I'm so impressed with the product & company, I'll be buying additional Audient products in the near future & that's a promise.
Worth The Wait!
First off, I want to thank Sweetwater for their tremendous service. The candy that they sent with my package was indeed nice as well...Regarding the iD22, this is by far the best audio interface I have used. I researched months and months for a big league or next to big league interface to upgrade to. I waited months for Audient to release the Windows drivers for this bad boy and the wait was definitely worth it. Coming from three different $100 - $200 range interfaces, I immediately noticed better instrument separation in mixes and my vocals sound much much clearer and more accurate. I strongly recommend the iD22 for anyone who is looking to take the next step up.
Surprisingly great sound,quiet preamps!!
I bought this to use at home to either double track guitars/bass recordings away from the studio.I was really surprised by the quality of the preamps how quiet yet musical they were from the start!! In fact I now do a lot of vocals right from home now because of the quality recording I'm getting from out of this little bad!!
Audient id22 Deserves a Sixth Star!
Ok...so this product falls into a pretty specific niche market: It does not have a ton of inputs or outputs, it does not have MIDI, only two mic preamps, only one headphone out, not bus powered, does not work with Windows (yet) or iOS (yet), it is heavy and not as portable as other similar interfaces.
So why would you want it? What sets it apart?
Before this purchase, I listened to and compared every interface available to get a feel for the sound of the input section (obviously it would be very difficult to compare all the output sections unless you bought them all and only kept one...or you work at Sweetwater ;)). There were several things that were consistent regardless of the different recordings I heard. Everything that passed through the id22 on the way in sounded fantastic!
The preamps are absolutely outstanding - clear, present, dynamic, and great top to bottom balance...and I offer this is not just compared to other interface preamps...I would say they hold their own against stand-alone mic amps in the $700-$1000 per channel category. I have not owned a ton of preamps in the past but I can give direct comparison to a few: Focusrite ISA One, Vintech X73, and Amek 9098 DMA. If I had to choose the one of those that sounds closest it would probably be the ISA One (even though the ISA has an output transformer and the Audient is transformerless)....with one important difference: I really think the Audient has less noise! Yep. It's that good. I would have ZERO hesitation using the built in preamps for jazz or classical recording (two applications where clean, ultra low noise, high headroom signal paths are desirable).
I have tested the id22 with a few microphones, SDC, LDC and dynamic (including the ubiquitous SM-7b)...and it sounded equally amazing on all. I know lots of folks buy the SM-7 because it generally always sounds useable to good on a variety of sources and has excellent rejection in less-than-ideal recording environments...but the down side is it needs a ton of gain to drive it. The id22 offers ample gain without adding any additional noise to the path. No Cloudlifter or other signal boost needed here.
I have not had a chance to test the DI myself yet, but understanding the DI input is a discreet circuit (not just routed through the pre), I would imagine it presents quite a contrast to other interfaces.
Likewise I have not tested the channel insert functionality...but knowing it is there has made me start looking at gear that would be a good compliment for tracking.
The headphone output is beautiful. Plenty of clean, noise free amplification, tight and extended lows and clear mids and highs.
Zero problems with setup on Mac...and latency performance is excellent. I tend to go by what I hear rather than numbers posted. The id22 has performed flawless so far at lowest buffer settings on my Mac.
Audient has stated they are working on both Windows drivers and in the future direct support for iOS devices. This device paired with an iPad or iPhone for 2-track location recording would be AMAZING. Audient if you are reading this...if possible try to implement this the way Apogee did...whereby the id22 would provide power / charge to the iOS device by direct USB > Lightning or 30 pin connection rather than through the USB CCC.
It is also nice to know if I decide to expand the number of simultaneous channels I want there is an option for ADAT or optical SPDIF input (not unique to the id22, but again, nice to have).
Negatives...only a couple so far:
- I would like a power switch. I tend to power down my equipment when it is not in use so this would be a nice addition.
- Headphone socket is on the rear. Not a deal breaker, but since this is a desktop interface it just makes sense to put the headphone on the front.
- Dim function does not apply to headphone output (or at least I have not figured out how to make this happen yet).
- The lack of MIDI port is not a real issue for me. A large amount of MIDI equipment has implemented MIDI via USB anyways.
So to wrap-
Why buy?: You want the absolute best construction and sound quality, per-dollar value is important, and you only need a couple of inputs / outputs.
Why not?: You are not on a Mac, want a rackmount interface, need more I/O without expansion, or need something smaller and the compromises necessary when using USB bus-powered designs are acceptable.
Super clean, super quiet
It's a good time to be recording music on a budget. We've already heard companies likes apogee and RME step things up with products like babyface and the one/duet/quartet series, but now Audient has stepped up to the plate and pushed things further.
This is a KILLER interface offering a level of quality and number of features unprecedented for the price. Finally, I own an interface/preamp that is virtually silent when you turn it all the way up (as though my imperfect hobbyist-level equipment didn't already add enough noise to my signal chain).
This is a very clinical, color-free representation of the sound, but personally, I've always felt that color comes best from instruments, performance, effects and even microphones.
Oh yeah, I'd say this thing was built like a brick, but bricks aren't made of metal. Nothing on this unit feels cheap and there are none of those annoying plastic covers for the knobs that can fall off and get lost. The only bad thing I can say about the build is that it has no power switch (whatever, I'm using this thing to run all of my computer audio anyway so I rarely turn it off).
Let me also add that Audient's customer service was prompt (even at 2am PST), polite and ultimately very effective (more on that below).
I will say two things though...
1) RE: your OS (as of Thanksgiving 2013) If you're using windows, hold on, it's not ready for prime time there, but it's coming. If you're running Mavericks (OS X 10.9), you MIGHT encounter an error where your software will crash because the unit needs a firmware update (but you won't be able to access the firmware update because the software is crashing). Just go to the help desk section of Audient's website, fill out a form and they'll promptly send you a file that will fix the problem.
Suffice to say, I've got this thing running like a champ. Admittedly, I've been a bit down about working, but the quality of this unit has relit a creative fire.
2) The only reason I'd suggest that you DON'T buy this unit is if you're NOT interested in expanding the amount of available channels. SPL has a product coming out soon (the Crimson) that matches and beats the feature list of the ID22 (and the preamps will probably be in the same ball park) all save for ADAT expandability.
Personally, I plan on eventually recording some live drum kits, so I'm glad that I went with this option. However, if you're the kind of person who is good with 2 channels, you might want to wait for the SPL Crimson.
Great little unit. Fantastic pre's. Love the solid desktop unit and great mixer app. Working great with Windows 7 and Cubase 5. Works perfect for what I'm doing as a producer of original music. I was also looking at RME Babyface, but decided to go with this for its higher end pre's. The cons are slightly higher latencies and no MIDI. I personally don't use a lot of in the box sounds (like VST instruments) or box effects (like playing LIVE guitar while using an effect from your DAW), so a little extra latency when I do use box sounds/effects is no big deal. If you play a lot of in the box sounds live and use lots of live effects, RME drivers might be better for you (but you'll be trading iD22's great pre's). Note, on the iD22, routing inputs 1 + 2 straight to the Main Mix basically means zero latency monitoring when recording live instruments/voice. And for MIDI I just bought a MOTU Micro Lite.
I was wanting to upgrade my interface. I have thunderbolt on my PC laptop but couldn't find an interface that was compatible with windows thunderbolt. My sales engineer at Sweetwater suggested this product. I am very happy with this product and now am an Audient believer. This gear has greatly improved my recordings. The preamps are clean, clear and musical yet transparent. Great options and control. It not only sounds professional, but the structure of the unit feels professional and solid. I am now looking forward to getting the ASP 880 to expand it from 2 to 10 high quality preamps. I was thinking I needed to not only upgrade my interface but also get an expensive preamp. Not so with this unit. It sounds great and saved me money in the long run. The fact that it is USB doesn't undermine this product in any way. The only issues I have with this unit is I wish it had an on/off switch and sometimes I have to load Protools a couple times for it to recognize the hardware. Even with those issues, I am in love with the results from this audio interface and would highly recommend it.
The Audient ID22 has been on my list of "Got to Have goodies" for some time.
The ID22 sound is excellent and the unit has great versatility of configurations weather recording just a couple of tracks or utilizing the optical ADAT ports to record up to ten channels at once.
I should also mention the software mixer as well that accompanies the ID22. It is simple in its appearance, however, it is brilliant at creating a variety of channel routings. The software has very accurate metering and is a joy to see at mix down. The latency is very low and I enjoyed to find that the unit automatically to sample frequency fairly quickly. The only improvements that I would like to see are, 1) When the software changes sampling rates to follow the computers current application default, rather than hearing the clicking, I would prefer for it to be silent and allow the user to rely on just the sync lLED on the ID22 itself.
Outstanding class A preamp quality sound! Seriously, this sounds stellar when paired with the right mic. Solid unit, feels good under the hand, easy to use and the simplicity greatly facilitates workflow. Most primary functions are there at your fingertips without even using the mixer software. The mixer software is not bad, either... Routing options take a little figuring out, but nothing out of reach. All in all, the simple design, quality electronics and incredible sound make this a GREAT interface for the home studio. I like it so much I'm adding the asp800 for more inputs... Excited about the overall sound of the new recordings coming through this unit!!! Look out world :)
You can see and feel this is a classy piece of gear the moment you pull it from the box: the unit itself is solid, heavy, rugged, all metal construction, clearly meant for long-term pro use. .
All the knobs are silky smooth in motion.
The software was easy to install and intuitive to use.
The sound is perfect. No coloration. No distortion. No noise.
The frequency response, especially for playback, has deep lows, and silky airy highs - not "hyped" like cheaper units.
The only things that aren't "Five Star" about this are:
1) The cheap wall wort power supply. It would have been nice to see an internal power supply, or an in-line version.
2) The preamps are good; but for vocals I still find myself using an analog channel strip to get a balanced vocal sound, then using this for A/D conversion.
Simple, elegant, great sounding interface.
I'm a professional trumpet player and composer but a relative novice to home recording/producing. I recently upgraded my old dinosaur G4 Power Book to a newer MacBook Pro, and thus wanted to upgrade my interface from my very old M-Audio Ozonic, which still functions great as a midi interface and controller, but as a recording interface, the DAC and preamp was always poor quality and headphone monitoring always too noisy. I'd been getting asked more and more to do remote recording and overdubbing work from home on trumpet, but I often had to turn it down as I never felt my setup sounded good enough for pro work, especially for simply recording trumpet. And for my own composition and songwriting projects, everything always just sounded like poor demo quality. It was time for an upgrade.
At first I was hoping to set my budget at around $300, but after doing some initial research and talking to many fellow pro-musician/home recordist and engineer friends and after a whole lot of internet research and gear forum lurking, I was convinced I'd have to spend at least twice that if I really wanted a serious sound upgrade. Time to pull out the credit card. As a musician, I travel a lot and wanted a somewhat mobile setup that I could travel with occasionaly or at least lug around town to do sessions with friends, etc, but also something that could sit solidly on my desktop most of the time. In my informal friend-polling, the Apogee Duet was the overwhelming recommendation for a portable interface. I was close to pulling the trigger on it, but after reading a lot about it I became a bit turned off by its lack of expandability (no ADAT), reports of driver instability, and the fact that a lot of people online were reporting that it tends to color the sound a bit and hype certain frequencies. Plus it just looked a little plasticy and cheap. Another friend recommended the RME Babyface as an equally portable but better sounding and more expandable option, albeit a slightly more expensive one. Already I was about to be way over budget. I was close to pulling the trigger on this until I started reading about a couple newer interfaces people were talking up on the internet forums, the SPL Crimson and the Audient iD22. For not much more money than the Babyface, these both seemed in the next league both sonically and in terms of build quality, if a bit less portable. As long as I was already way over my budget, I figured I might as well get something that would last me awhile. The Babyface still had that cheap plastic look to it, similar to the Duet, whereas both the Crimson and the id22 both looked substantially sturdy and professional.
Right away I favored the iD22 because the Crimson was still in production and not shipping yet, and the iD22 had been out for awhile and already had overwhelmingly favorable reviews. And while the Crimson has midi ports and a few other features the id22 does not, it lacks ADAT expandability, and this was the kicker for me, as I'd like to someday be able to track drum kit or a full ensemble. Listening to some sound samples online, the Babyface sounded clean and uncolored, but a bit cold or harsh for lack of a better description. People were raving about the id22 DACs and built in pres, and the recording samples I heard online seemed to back this up. I was also attracted to it's aesthetic elegance and simplicity, and from what I read the accompanying mixer software app seemed simple and streamlined, as opposed to RME's software which seems to have a reputation for being extremely solid and stable but also overwhelmingly complex. I tend to get cross-eyed trying to learn complex software, so I liked the fact that Audient's software seemed simple and intuitive.
So I finally slapped down my credit card and ordered the thing, along with a new AT 2035 condenser mic from Sweetwater to pair with it. I couldn't be happier with my decision. I'm sure both the Duet or the Babyface are great interfaces and either would've served my needs perfectly adequately for now, and probably been more easily portable, but I worried about their longterm build quality, outgrowing them sonically, and I also didn't want to deal with a jumble of breakout boxes, cables, etc. The id22 is as simple, streamlined and elegant as advertised, and most importantly it sounds amazing. It's easy and intuitive to use right out of the box, which is exactly what I was hoping for. It doesn't take long to set up or start making music with, everything about it is simple and fairly self-explanatory even for a relative newbie like me, but I feel like it also offers a lot of room to grow into. I fully expect it to outlast my new computer. So far I've mostly used it for recording trumpet, and a little bit of vocals. Over the holidays I took it with me when I went home to visit my family, and recorded my a little of my dad playing classical guitar, as well as the two of us messing around and playing some jazz standards. Everything sounds super clean, rich, warm but without any real noticeable coloration from the converters or the pres. It sounds true and pure and dynamic, with a presence and intimacy that just blows my old interface out of the water. It just sounds pro. I look forward to putting some other instruments through the paces on this thing, but already I'm happier with my recorded trumpet sound through this interface in my apartment than I have been on a lot of pro studio sessions. The unit is rock solid, feels really well constructed, not cheap at all, but also still relatively light and portable enough. All the knobs and switches feel sturdy. Being somewhat of a luddite, I really love that there are manual knobs for input, monitor and headphone levels, and real onboard switches for phantom power, pad, polarity reverse and high pass filter. For most basic functions you pretty much never have to mess with the software if you don't want to. But if you do its super simple and intuitive, and the drivers seem totally rock solid. I use Logic as my DAW and the iD22 syncs with it seamlessly. Once you have it set up with your DAW, you can pretty much just let the Audient mixer software run in the background and do everything from your workstation. Latency seems quite low, I've had no issues with it so far. I live in a small apartment and thus do most of my monitoring on headphones. The headphone output is super clean even if its cranked all the way up, no hiss or noise. It has its own DAC and sounds awesome. I've actually been using it a lot as a headphone amp for critical and pleasurable music listening, which has been a nice little bonus suprise...music playback sounds really great when paired with a good set of cans (I got a pair of Beyerdynamic dt770's to pair with it. I got them mostly for tracking but its brought a whole new depth to my music listening too! They are fairly high impedance cans, 250 ohms, and the iD22 headphone amp has plenty of juice to drive them). Overall I'm very impressed and feel the unit is very deserving of all of it's positive reviews around the web.
Only a few minor cons I can find so far.
Some people have mentioned the annoyance of all the inputs and outputs being on the back of the unit. This doesn't bother me too much but it would perhaps be nice to have the inputs on the front for easier access.
It would be nice to have a couple more inputs even if they were just clean line-ins with no preamps, as there are plenty of situations where only two inputs will feel limiting. I suppose that's probably too much to ask at this price point and footprint size, and that's what the ADAT expansion is for anyway, but a four input version would be ideal, even at a slightly higher pricetag.
It doesn't have midi i/o, which isn't huge deal since there are a huge number of midi interfaces on the market, and my old controller still works perfectly fine for that purpose. However it would be nice to have it all on one unit.
It doesn't have 192 kHz recording capability. I would never actually care about this unless I was asked to do a job for someone who's project was in 192 kHz. Otherwise 96 kHz sounds more than fine to me.
When I unpacked my iD22 I discovered that one of the rubber feet on the bottom is slightly uneven from the rest, so it doesn't quite sit level on my desk, it rocks back and forth ever so slightly if I push on it, and also makes a clinking sound when this happens, which could be a problem if this happened while trying to record something quiet. A very minor nuisance, but still, for a fairly expensive unit you'd think they'd get that easy detail right at the factory. This is the only build-quality issue I've found so far.
For being a supposedly portable unit, they don't give you much to transport it in. The box it ships in is your only option, and its not exactly ideal for travel. Inclusion of a fitted protective travel case for it would have been a nice touch, or even to have one available for separate purchase. Hopefully Audient or a third party will address this need. I took it with me on a plane trip across the country over the holidays by keeping it in its box and putting it in my suitcase. It faired fine, but I was a bit nervous. On my return trip, for lack of space I packed a mic cable on top of it in the box. I thought I wrapped it and packed it securely so it wouldn't budge in the box, but when I unpacked it there were some very minor scuffs left on the black surface from the cable. Purely cosmetic and barely noticeable, and of course it was my own fault for not at least packing a protective layer between them, but even a basic protective case would have alleviated the problem.
The usb key (it's actually shaped like a key) that comes with it (and holds the driver downloads and manual but can be used for storing files, software licenses, etc) is a nice touch, little bit cheap feeling, and due to its thin design it shimmies around in the usb port a bit. I would have preferred a plain old standard solid thumb drive instead.
All in all, very minor complaints. Otherwise I think Audient really hit a home run with this one. I'd recommend the iD22 to anyone from newbies like me, bedroom producers or singer songwriters who want a simple intuitive but extremely high quality pro-sounding interface for home or small studio recording, to pros who want something portable for taking to remote recording sessions or for smaller home/project/vocal/overdub studios. I ended up spending way more money on this than I had initially budgeted for an interface, but I feel like it was well worth it. I think its a really great value for the quality you get. It sounds just about as good as many far more expensive pro rack mount units I've encountered in pro studios. As long as you don't need a whole lot of inputs, the iD22 is really a fantastic interface.
I would also add that this was my first time dealing with Sweetwater, and it was a great, easy experience. The website is extremely helpful and informative, the shipping was free and super fast (I think I got mine in two days), everything was well packed, and a really friendly customer service rep followed up with a non-creepy, non-salesy personal phone call to make sure all my order details were correct before it shipped, with a personal followup email (not from a robot) after it shipped to make sure there were no issues. Great old fashioned customer service. A great buying experience all around.
Great Mic Pres and Clocking
Great clocking for an all inclusive system like this at this super cheap price point. I have an Aphex 1788 hooked up via ADAT and it sounds great. Unfortunately the clocking on my external mic pres aren't anywhere as good as the Audient internal clock is. When i switch from external to internal for mixing the center image locks down and stereo image cleans up significantly. It's pretty shocking to be honest. FYI Clocking matters. :)
I watched this unit from afar for about 6 months after I learned about its existence. I have always been curious about Audient's stuff but for a home studio the gear was way out of reach. I pulled the trigger and have been extremely happy with my sound vs my Saffire 24DSP. Yes I lost some features such as dual headphone outputs and input metering on the unit, but the preamps on the Audient blew the other guy away. Plus, having inserts on both channels allows me to easily integrate outboard gear when I want more analogue in my sound. The build quality is impeccable and feel is professional, not prosumer. If this is in your budget range and can live without hardware input metering, do it! You will not be disappointed!
iD22 - Excellent - with some issues for Pro Tools users
We moved to the Audient iD22 from an AVID Mbox 3 for one of our workstations - primarily for the excellent monitor management features of the iD22 - but, of course, there was also a measurable jump in quality of the preamps, expansion options, and construction as well. --- and it sounds amazingly good. The iD22 really drives two sets of monitors (and headphones) well - with great detail and depth.
The software mixer app is very straightforward and flexible --- very easy to create and save multiple complex routing setups, without being complicated. Also appreciate the addition of a trim slider for the alternate speakers - allowing an easy way to balance the volume of your main and alt monitors.
The only (and it's BIG) downside (for Pro Tools / Windows users at least) is they have not yet figured out how to get it to play nicely with sample-rate and/or buffer changes. You will need to know the sample-rate of your session (and change this rate on your computer), prior to opening your session --- otherwise the iD22 will crash PT - and you will need to close the session and restart Pro Tools once again before the iD22 will know what to do - and not crash your session. Same applies to buffer setting changes. If you try to change the buffer setting while Pro Tools is open, you will have to close your session and re-start Pro Tools once again. This can drive you nuts when you're moving from tracking to mixing - and you need to increase or decrease buffer size for the task - or to get rid of pops and clicks. This has caused us to have to return to the AVID interface for those times when we don't feel like fighting with the iD22 - and find we have to move back and forth between new and archived sessions quickly.
These are all things that Mbox 3 had no trouble with --- Pro Tools would just open and adjust the Mbox interface to the correct sample-rate - and you could change the buffer settings at will. Not-so with the iD22 - and it will likely be a serious disruption to your workflow if you are used to changing between sessions frequently - work with multiple client sessions in a day - or just use a variety of sample-rate settings for different types of audio work, or are just not always sure what the settings of a session are prior to opening. Audient states that this is an issue that all other interfaces have, besides the AVID interfaces (which may or may not be true) - but, here's an opportunity for them to figure it out and stand-out even further from the crowd ---
On the plus-side, Audient has excellent customer support --- and hopefully they're actively working on a fix to what seems should be a fairly straightforward feature. It's obviously do-able - as AVID interfaces have had this ability for years now. Even with that flaw -- it's the only issue that stands between a 4 and 5-star rating --- and the only thing that has kept us from immediately buying one of the 8-channel Audient expansion units.
...Liking the Audient iD22
Got the iD22 a couple of weeks ago. I needed something with a smaller footprint but still able to get me at least 10 channels in. The iD22 works perfectly. This is a solid piece of gear. Built like a tank. Software and drivers both working 100% on my mac. One of the best sounding "desktop" units I have heard, and I have put almost all of them on my desk at one time or another. The mic press are clean and detailed and the onversion is excellent. Having this close to me as a monitor controller is very handy as well. ADAT in and out, Balanced inserts, excellent HP amp and a great DIÖ..they hit on everything. This is real piece of hardware. Would recommend to anyone looking at a Duet or Apollo Twin to seriously consider the iD22.
Clean pres and crystal clear d/a
Near perfect for mixing at home and tracking a few instruments (or up to 10 with adat). The Audient iD22 is for people that want the cleanest ad/da conversion they can get under $1000 (I'd say it's more like $2000) with a few solid pres and useful monitoring solutions.
Pros: Cleanest preamps I've ever owned by a long shot (coming from prosumer stuff like digi002, presonus firebox, line6 toneport). Versatile I/O selection. Editable monitoring control buttons. The d/a conversion is so good I can hear much more detail in my old low end monitors (alesis720s). Best headphone amp I've ever heard in a converter. Layout of the controls is clear.
Cons: Wall wart power supply. The software mixer isn't as intuitive as it can be. (It's fairly straight forward but requires a read or two through the manual for advanced routing.)
Sweetwater's best-in-the-business customer service is the reason I'm reviewing this. Kevin Scott is patient, friendly, and knowledgable (and has been over the past 5-8 years.) Also, Audient replied to email questions I had about the iD22 within an hour several times before I even bought the unit.
Sounds great but has its problems
The good This thing sounds great.lots of options . The bad . The interface loses connection once in while which is really bad when your running protools. Crackles in pops in monitoring