I suddenly have a budget of about $1k for interface/PC, recommend me something

I suddenly have a budget of about $1k for interface/PC, recommend me something
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I have some money to burn…so I am trying to slice/dice this however it will be best…

Recently I made a thread and asked what to recommend for full band recording. At the time I was at a budget disadvantage, so the Tascam US16x08 was one of the recommendations, along with some Behringer mixer/interfaces. I bought the US16x08 and has been running decent. Occasional glitch but not really bad. The preamps are not something I’d extol, but they are OK. I tagged on my ageing firewire Presonus FP10 interface which when not connected via firewire works as 8in/8out preamp, so that going into the Tascam gave me 16 tracks, which are working pretty good and for band demo purposes are quite passable. I’ve posted some recordings on this forum.

Now I am seeing some unexpected cash from music-related activities and am thinking of upgrading things…

For one - I really like the hands on approach and honestly have never been happy to work “in the box”, so the Tascam Model 24 which can be a mixer, standalone recording solution and audio interface at the same time has been something I’ve though of getting for quite some time:
https://tascam.com/us/product/model_24/top
I am not sure how much out of the box I can do with it.
From seeing what it can do, probably I can dump the rehearsal space mixer and use this as a rehearsal room recorder, band mixer, and if needed audio interface as I have an old-ish PC there that does the current 16 channel tracking. I guess if I need to I can keep it there.
The Tascam 16x08 and FP10 then can go home and I can build around that.

My home PC however, is kinda ageing, and some of the plugins will set me back a bit to update.
I have a Win7 i7 machine, 8GB ram which is now on the lower side and can’t be upgraded. The rest of the PC is fine though and can handle for the most part what I throw at it. It’s a bit long in the tooth though.

So I am kinda wondering whether not to build a new workstation. All my DAW and plugins are pretty much paid up to the latest, and only thing lagging behind are my synth and EZDrummer plugins. Synths don’t know if they can go up, if they do that’ll set me back quite a bit. I have IK plugins:
Sampletank 2XL, Sonic Synth 2, Miroslav (older edition), Amplitube 3 and Fender, which are all getting a bit old and probably will have to upgrade if I want to continue using. I don’t use them much but I sprinkle them in my productions. The Miroslav is probably the one I can’t do without. Amplitube 3 from what I understand, most of it can be salvaged in Amplitube 4 Custom Shop as most of these will transfer. I am using Kazrog more often lately and the built-in Ampire (Studio One) so maybe not as important.
EZDrummer has been essential and I do have a copy of Superior Drummer that I probably would like to use but that is also the older edition.

So now I am also kinda torn whether I should go that route and maybe get a smaller interface cause when I am not recording drummers I don’t need more than 2 dedicated channels. Been looking at Audient for a while and IK released a guitarist special Axe I/O which has built-in goodies for guitarists, and a boatload of bundled software. They bundle a full version of Amplitube 4 Deluxe and the interface looks quite good for my home recording needs.
https://www.ikmultimedia.com/products/axeio/

It’ll definitely clean up the amp sim route, and then I can sell my reamp boxes, if it really is up to snuff.

On the other hand I can take bring up to $1.5K and get a Mesa Boogie Mark V used and have my dream amp. Not that I play bad amps right now - I have a really good selection, but again, that amp is fantastic.

On the other hand I can also get something more upper tier on the recording ladder - RME, or other…
or just upgrade my PC to something that can handle higher load. A friend suggested I go Mac again, Mac Mini i7, for example and the Axe I/O could work.

I guess going back to studio work also won’t be a bad idea,
I do have access to the studio I worked at, now as a freelance producer so I get discounted rates so maybe big multitrack projects if they come around are not that big of a deal and I can handle 16 channel jobs now with my current gear at the garage demo level, in case I want to go back to more of that.
I am all good on the mic pre and microphone selections at the moment, especially when I combine forces with our drummer who decked out his mic kit, and a friend of mine that loans me some high end boutique mics. I also have a decent mic locker, so nothing really needed on that side.

After all I can maybe finally get that high end espresso machine I’ve always wanted - so you can’t get depresso when you have good espresso :slight_smile:

… or I can pay Michael Wagener to reamp my tracks so I can put a big name on my upcoming LP :slight_smile:

I’d really appreciate some feedback, or other gear suggestions you might have.

Haha, sorry about the long rant ^

Made up my mind…kinda. Lost the auction of my dream amp, which is Mesa Mark V but scored a Mesa Express instead. Also got the Axe I/O which is guitar centered interface, with 2 mics, tops of what I need at home as I don’t put more than 2 mics on guitar and/or vocals.

That bumps up my whole library of Amplitube as well, so I’ll be doing more “in the box” if the PC will handle it. If not - it has a reamp feature so I can always use one of the many amps that I have :slight_smile:

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Hey man. I haven’t been able to sign on in a bit. No need to flag this post…you may want to go ahead and un-flag it. I think it didn’t get any responses because people just may not have seen it at the right time.

I would prioritize the computer higher than the interface. I was using a Behringer Uphoria, but recently switched to the Tascam US16x08 for playing live, and it has been VERY reliable.

So are you happy with the 16 channel system you currently have in place?

Hey Jonathan, I got the Tascam US16x08…it’s allright. Kinda cloudy on the preamps a bit but no huge complaints. I am supplementing it with a Presonus FP10 which works also as 8in/out preamp, so the 2nd 8 channels are actually better. Didn’t think I’ll say this but I prefer the XMAX preamps over something else :slight_smile:

This tracks mainly drums, and our drum setup is also budget so it works fine I think.

Happy – not really, but it’s passable.

I’m LOVING that little 16x08. But I’m not using a single input. It hasn’t bugged or crashed once. The only time it did was when I was testing, and it wasn’t the Tascams fault. I didn’t realize I can’t run a 16ft USB cable, so it kept falling offline.

The inputs are not bad, honestly for $250 8 preamps and they sound clean although a bit unfocused. Nothing eq can’t fix. I am using it to record drums so can’t say I really need that much hi def there as its mostly the spot mics.

It came offline and lost sync once, No idea why. I am running a slightly older driver so that might be fixed by now.

I got the Axe I/O by IKMultimedia and it’s a 2 channel in/6 out interface. The pres on that thing are “wow”. Just tracked our vocalist on a ribbon Samson VR88 and it was like buttah.

For me it was the length of the USB cable causing it. Problem went away with a shorter cable. Could be a lot of other things though :slight_smile:

I might look into that…mine is 6ft I think.