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Joined: Jan 2007
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I've been borrowing a two-year-old Presonus Firebox for a line-out recording connection from my Roland to my computer. It was okay except for sometimes quitting in the middle of use and necessitating a restart and re-booting of the computer (windows xp). A few days ago it quit completely.

Cheap to me means around $100 new. USB is fine. I would like to get the best preamps and cleanest signal for the money. I don't need multitrack or a lot of bells and whistles. I don't want an internal sound card and I don't want to route through a field recorder.

I got a Sweetwater recommendation for a Lexicon Alpha. The price is very friendly ($79), but I don't know anyone who has used one. Can anyone comment on it or offer another recommendation?

Thanks


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I've had good luck with one of these through Audacity. You can probably do better with your budget, but I have no complaints.

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I (and many other people) have had bad experiences with the Lexicon Omega, but this may or may not have any relevance with regards to the Alpha. When I could get my Omega to work, it sounded just fine, but I could never get it to work consistently. But at $100 new, there aren't too many other options besides the alpha if you want very high quality audio (i.e. 24-bit). Maybe the E-MU 0202 USB 2.0 is the best deal. It is said to have exceptional sound quality and is also USB 2.0. I once considered getting one of these (or the bigger 0404) before I decided to "splurge" on an M-Audio Fast Track Ultra which offered more inputs, outputs, and monitoring effects. Or perhaps an Edirol UA-1EX, which is even cheaper (same price as the alpha)? You'd need 1/4" to RCA cables or adapters, but that's no big deal really. Many of the interfaces down below $100 or so are mono, which is far from ideal for recording modern keyboards with stereo samples. Raising your price point $50 or so should give you some more options, and once you get to $200+ you begin to get more features.

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Much like buying any gear, limiting your purchases to the lowest price point possible tends to give you less than excellent results, fewer features, etc. I find I'm much better off to stretch my budget and buy a really good piece of gear that will actualy meet my needs for the next few years rather than the next few months.
Clyde


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Thanks Buck and Sean.

Wildpaws.

I don't need a big feature set. In a lot of the higher end units, that's where the money goes. The Presonus Firebox I was borrowing cost around 300 to the buyer. Fortunately, that buyer wasn't me. In terms of a clean signal, it was no better than an M-Audio Transit for $79 that I have on a laptop.

I don't mind paying more for better preamps, but I don't want 20 ports that I'll never use.



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Hi turandot, my recommendation is:

Emu USB both 0202 and 0404.
Alesis IO2
M-audio Fast Track Pro.

All besides the Emu 0202usb would have to be used at a good price to come close to your price range.
I can recommend them since I have used those and their headphone amps to drive headphones.
If you find some other soundcard that is a good contender let us know, so we can widen our knowledge.
Regards,
Ary

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I have a Tascam US-122L that does everything I need it to (recording wise). It's around 1120$. USB.


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音楽は楽しいですね。。。
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If your comp has FireWire (IEEE1394) I`d recommend Behringer FCA202. Nice and cheap.

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Woah. The Tascam is $120, not 1120!

Last edited by Theowne; 06/15/09 01:17 PM.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Theowne- Piano Videos (Ravel, Debussy, etc) & Original Compositions
音楽は楽しいですね。。。

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