Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 Audio Interface Review 2017
- Runner up for Best Audio Interface 2017
For over 20 years, Focusrite has been manufacturing audio products that are designed to be used by both professional and amateur musicians.
The headquarters of Focusrite are located in the United Kingdom and they also have a marketing subsidiary in the United States.
Serving customers in approximately 160 territories, Focusrite is a well known, global brand. Focusrite specializes in producing audio interfaces as well as other audio related products.
If you are a recording musician, purchasing an audio interface is a necessity since the sound cards that come with computers are not very high quality. An audio interface allows you to record with increased sound quality.
One of the top interfaces on the market is the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2. Read on to see how this audio interface measures up in the quality department.
What We Looked For In The Focusrite Scarlett 2i2
A great audio interface needs to produce excellent sound quality. The sound quality should be clear and pristine and not produce any buzzing sounds, which is a problem with some interfaces.
Excessive latency is every musicians nightmare since it makes focusing difficult while recording. A good interface should have very little latency.
Since you may need to take the interface with you to and from the studio, or out on the road, it has to be durable enough to withstand these conditions. It needs to be compact and light so that it is easily portable.
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 Product Overview
The Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 is one of the most popular USB interfaces currently on the market. The red colored exterior is not just attractive in appearance, but also durable. The case is made of anodized aluminum, making it sturdy to withstand life on the road.
The Scarlett features 2 inputs and 2 outputs as well as 2 high quality preamps. With the flick of a switch, you can hear what you are recording through your speakers or headphones without the signal having to go through your computer first. This design results in zero latency so that you can focus completely on recording.
Featuring a 24-bit resolution at sample rates of up to 96 kHz, it produces a very high quality digital conversion. This ensures that every note and small detail are captured with the best clarity.
The USB connection eliminates a long setup process; all you have to do is plug it in to get started. Compact and light, the Scarlett 2i2 is truly portable. It can easily fit into your laptop bag. To make things even easier, it is also bus powered which means that it doesn’t require any additional power supply.
The combination of inputs on the front panel can be used to connect line and instrument level signals as well as microphones. This feature adds flexibility to your recording. Say you are recording the output of a stage piano or synthesizer. With the flick of a switch, you can cater to the output of an acoustic or electric guitar.
Located on the front panel are also halo indicators to tell you when you have a good signal for recording. The red light means that your signal is clipping so you should reduce the gain. When the signal is good, it will turn green.
The monitor dial gives you tactile control for the volume of your speakers. The headphone amp allows for a clean and loud signal to be transmitted to the headphones.
Included in the purchase of the Scarlett 2i2 is an authorization code so that you can access recording software online.
Check out the video below to see a sound test:
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 Pros And Cons
Users are happy with the design and the convenient controls. The balanced inputs and outputs work very well and there is plenty of gain. The headphone amp works great which is important for musicians.
The case is attractive and sturdy. It is bus powered so you don’t need an external power source.
The Scarlett 2i2 is very easy to set up and simple to use. The interface provides clear and crisp sound quality.
The major complaint users have is that the drivers you download from the public Focusrite website are not good so you need to download the most recent drivers. The hardware on the Scarlette 2i2 is good but the drivers make latency a problem. However users report that this problem is fixed by just downloading the latest drivers.
Final Verdict On The Focusrite Scarlett 2i2
Overall, the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 is a great audio interface. Users across the board are very happy with it. The only thing you will have to do to get it to work perfectly is install the latest drivers and you will be all set.
All images sourced from Amazon.com