Top 18 Best Audio Interface Under 1000 Dollars

best audio interface under 1000

Getting into sound recording has never been easier. Gone will be the days when recording adequate sound meant needing to shell out thousands of dollars on recording gear. These days, it’s easy to spend just a couple hundred dollars on gear, and specifically, a fantastic sound interface, which sounds almost as great as a top-notch studio. Sure there are things that you can not yet achieve in the home but by spending a couple of hundred bucks, you can get at least close to a professional sound.

Of course, there are dozens of sound interface options available from the sub-$1,000 price range, and they are not all made equal. That, however, is the reason why we’ve assembled this guide.

Prior to purchasing a sound port, it’s well worth considering that a few things. For starters, you’re going to want to think of the number of inputs and outputs you want out of the audio port. It’s typically a fantastic idea to have more inputs and output signals than you believe you’ll want, as it allows you to develop a small and capture more instruments down the road.

It’s also a fantastic idea to consider how the port will communicate with your pc if you require a USB-C compatible port, or want to decide on an interface using an older connectivity technique. And, of course, you’re going to want to consider cost range. Every one these sound interfaces are below $1,000 but $1,000 may be somewhat expensive to get some, so we’ve included much cheaper interfaces also.

Reviews Of 18 Best Audio Interface Under 1000 Dollars

[amazon bestseller=”Audio Interface Under 1000″ items=”10″ template=”list”]

Roland Studio-Capture

Together with the Studio-Capture, Roland crams a good deal of features into a hefty small sound interface that handily works as both a desktop computer or a rackmount unit.

It’s not the prettiest device on the market, but Roland provides a rock-solid aluminum chassis that is swimming in features. By way of example, there is a total of 16 analog inputs (12 XLR/TRS combos and four 1/4″ line ports) and 10 outputs, using considerable controls.

Other features, such as Roland’s convenient AUTO-SENS technologies, along with this pro-level sound quality make this unit a true winner.

Universal Audio Arrow

Should you wish to make the most of this newest Thunderbolt 3 standard, then there are a couple of options that you however that amount will be a whole lot greater within a couple of years. For the time being, however, there’s the Universal Audio Arrow, which is a streamlined, well-designed interface aimed at small studios which will not have to use a lot of inputs at the same time.

The Universal Audio Arrow has two mic pros built into it, and as you would expect from a Universal Audio apparatus, they are well-built and excellent-sounding preamps. On the front part of the port, you are going to become LED input and output indicators and a couple of monitoring controls, whereas on the rear is where you will discover the 2 preamps and outputs, as well as the Thunderbolt interface. Safe to say this preamp is a gorgeous apparatus but it’s likely not the best option for bigger studios.



  • Mac & PC
  • Supports all Significant DAWs


  • Recently released audio interface
  • 18 inputs and 20 outputs
  • Nine high-quality mic preamps
  • Produced by Focusrite, that are leaders from the music technology industry
  • 3rd Production of this Scarlett 18i20
  • Durable metal chassis which is rack-mountable
  • Sleek aesthetic design
  • Includes software
  • Professional Tools, Ableton Live Lite, Softube time plus tone package, Focusrite’s Red plugin Suite, 3-month splice subscription and 1 free XLN Addictive Keys virtual instrument
  • Requires power adapter
  • Warranty: 2-Year Manufacturers Warranty


  • USB C connectivity
  • MIDI input/output
  • 2 XLR/TRS mix inputs (on the front)
  • 6 XLR/TRS mix inputs (on the trunk )
  • 2 TRS/Headphone outputs (on the front)
  • 10 TRS/Line outputs (on the trunk )
  • S/PDIF input & output
  • 2 x ADAT input & output
  • 24-bit/192 kHz resolution
  • 20 Hz 20 kHz Frequency Response
  • 48v Phantom Power


The Scarlett 18i20 (3rd Gen) by Focusrite is the third iteration of this phenomenally successful series. With each production, Focusrite seems to iron out any flaws and add performance.

It is an 18 input, together with 8 XLR/TRS mic inputs, as well as a MIDI input & output, S/PDIF input & output, as well as also the ADAT inputs/outputs.

The reason this port features two sets of ADAT inputs/outputs as it requires the two sets to be used simultaneously when operating the device at 96kHz.

The device itself is quite physically pleasing and maybe rack-mounted. It also includes a selection of software, which will delight some other musicians who could be starting out.

As for the technical capabilities of this device, as expected, it can offer a 192kHz sample rate, which is quite impressive.

In general, since it’s extremely brand new, there are just a few customer reviews in existence. But when taking into consideration the previous versions and their customer reviews, it certainly suggests this is a port to check at.


  • Highly reputable brand
  • New technology, together with it being a brand new release
  • Tried and tested, as it’s the 3rd Production of the Item
  • Ultra-low latency
  • 2-year manufacturers guarantee
  • Very impressive technical specs


  • Phantom power can simply be applied to majority inputs (i.e 1-4, 4-8)

Audient iD4

Establish cost: $199/119/$133 | Connectivity: USB 2 | Audio resolution: 24-bit/96kHz | Analogue inputs: 2 | Analogue outputs: 2 | Digital connectivity: None | MIDI I/O: No

  • Fantastic value for money
  • Excellent preamp
  • Well-thought-out
  • Not much to complain about

Arguably the best sound interface you can purchase for less than $200, ” The iD4 is a simple two-input/two-output that with a mic preamp complete with phantom power for using condenser mics as well as an instrument amount DI for plugging in your guitar or bass. In addition to this, there’s a most important output for the speakers and dual headphone outputs.

The entire issue is powered by USB and, together with Apple’s camera link kit, it may also use an iPhone/iPad. On the other hand, the studio devilry is in the detail: Audient has thought about that which with worth and usability in mind, which makes what is a funding solution sense anything but inexpensive. The Audient iD4 is, very simply, the best USB sound interface we have seen at this price for quite a while.

Steinberg UR824

The UR 824 is a really respectable player in the sound interface stadium. It is outfitted with quite neutral and very low noise Yamaha D-Pre mic preamps and may convert to and from electronic audio at 24 bit, 192 kHz using 105 dB of dynamic selection. It comes standard with 8 analog inputs and 8 outputs however you can extend that to 24 from 24 in the event that you join external mic preamp modules through both pairs of ADAT i/o. In addition to it features clock i/o and S/PDIF (through ADAT).

Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB Audio Interface

This is possibly the most popular and widely used music port in the industry now.

It has four analog inputs which come with preamps and benefit to assist you easily capture your vocals and instruments.

With it’s 2 and 2 Out jacks, you can easily list two mics easily

It has rather low latency which allows you to utilize as many plugins as you need with no stress your DAW’s memory card.

This is actually useful as it does not slow your computer up or causes it to overheat.

It has a 1/4 output jack which allows your studio monitors and headphones for greater mixing

It comes packaged as a package that includes Pro Tools, Ableton Live Lite and Focusrite Control.

Behringer U-Phoria UM2

First up comes the Behringer U-Phoria UM2. This is the cheapest sound interface money can purchase while still not sacrificing quality.


  • 1 XLR/quarter-inch input
  • 1 quarter-inch (just ) enter
  • 2 quarter-inch output
  • +48V Phantom Power
  • Headphones Output
  • Easy-access output and gain knobs on the surface
  • Signal indicator
  • Desktop use
  • Compact
  • USB Powered
  • Compatible with most major DAWs
  • Recording software included

Our Take

Should you will need the cheapest sound port available that is still dependable, then the UM2 is a fantastic selection. Even though it may not possess the flexibility and features of additional sound interfaces (Scarlett has improved preamps and enter options), at $39.99 it surely seems to be outdoing itself.

PreSonus Studio 192

When you step in the higher-end of this current market, PreSonus is a brand that will always provide you a great deal of bang for your dollar. The PreSonus Studio 192 is a trusted sound port, constructed for professionals and serious enthusiasts alike.

The heart of this package is it’s numerous I/O options, with up to 26 inputs and 32 outputs, with several excellent XMAX preamps plus a Fat Channel DSP.

As we emphasize in the entire review of this PreSonus Studio 192, it’s a USB 3.0 interface which yields near-zero latency even under heavier loads. In general, really solid.



  • Mac & PC & Internet App control on almost any apparatus (iOS, Android, Linux, etc)
  • Supports all Significant DAWs


  • MOTU is a leading firm in the industry
  • 18-input/18-output sound interface
  • Heavy-duty chassis
  • Capable of system expansion and apparatus networking
  • Join up to five MOTU interfaces
  • Ability to network with additional interfaces and computers
  • Internet program control from any device (using a local area network)
  • Speedy setup presets
  • Close to zero-latency tracking (5ms latency as retrieved from Amazon Reviews)
  • Requires power adapter
  • Warranty: 2-Year Manufacturers Warranty


  • USB 2.0 connectivity (compatible with USB 3.0)
  • Ethernet cable input
  • MIDI input/output
  • 1 XLR input (on the front)
  • 2 TRS inputs for guitar (on the front)
  • 1 XLR input (on the trunk )
  • 6 TRS/Line inputs (on the trunk )
  • 6 TRS/Line outputs (on the trunk )
  • L & R Line outputs (on the trunk )
  • S/PDIF input/output
  • 24-bit/192 kHz resolution
  • 48v Phantom Power


The MOTU UltraLite AVB interface undoubtedly holds up as being a high-quality sound port, and that’s evident in the customer review ratings.

The port provides 36 audio channels, supplying 10 analog inputs alongside 8 analog outputs, where there is a selection of XLR and Line ports (we have supplied the specifics in the technical specs section). Furthermore, it includes an optical input/output to increase the general input and output capacity.

It’s compatible with a PC and a Mac, through a USB 2.0 link (though it’s compatible with USB 3.0), offering high data transfer speeds and minimal latency.

Moreover, the Ultralite AVB electronic mixer provides 48 channels and 12 busses, all of which could even be controlled along with your Mac, Windows, Linux, iOS and Android apparatus, using the internet app served with your physical hardware itself… Perfect for performance or recording environments.

And of course, the UltraLite AVB could be further expanded, using the MOTU AVB Switch, which enables you to connect up to five MOTU interfaces, so that the possibilities are endless.

All in all, the MOTU UltraLite AVB is an interface that is perfect for live setups, professional studios, and even aspiring house studios… Each of which comes at a cost, but considering it’s created by MOTU, you are aware that it’s an interface that will supply ultra high-quality recordings and last for quite a while.

None-the-less, MOTU is such a respectable brand, that along with the 2-year limited warranty along with the very low latency time, it will surely be a port to consider.


  • Reputable brand
  • Fantastic customer reviews
  • Ability to link up to 5 MOTU devices
  • Ability to network with additional interfaces and computers
  • Internet app control through any apparatus (iPad, iPhone, etc)
  • 2-year manufacturers guarantee
  • Very impressive technical specs


There are not many downsides, however, the port screen isn’t too big, considering the number of information it displays.

Mackie Onyx Producer 2.2

Launch cost: $160/129/ / | Connectivity: USB 2 | Audio resolution: 24-bit/192kHz | Analogue inputs: 2 | Analogue outputs: 2 | Digital connectivity: None | MIDI I/O: Yes

With high-quality Onyx mic pres, balanced analog connectivity and functionality up to 24-bit/192kHz, the bus-powered Onyx Producer 2.2 sound port is much more than capable of having clean signals in and from your DAW. You will find two indistinguishable mic/line inputs with mix XLR/jack connectors. Each has a manual green backlit switch to select a Hello Z instrument, also there’s an international backlit switch for 48V phantom power.

Input signals can be tracked with zero latency using the Input/DAW Mix knob, and rounding off the front panel is a sizable Monitor flat jack and a headphone output with a level knob. Round the back, you will find a set of 1⁄4-inch jacks to get the track output, and also a set of MIDI connectors (In and Out), that is quite convenient. Throw from the robust metal case and you have a compact workhorse apparatus which should last for years. You also get a DAW, Tracktion T7, in the box.

The Winner

Based on the amount of i/o along with also the routing flexibility, the standard of the preamps, the A/D D/A conversion process, the connectivity and the ease of integration that I consider the Focusrite Clarett 8PreX to be among the best products available now. It is just an excellent value for the price. Adding this to a studio automatically transforms your setup into an extremely professional one.

With so many inputs and outputs along with also the capability to include much more with ADAT connections, this may work flawlessly in large studios that usually record big sessions. Add to the super-fast Thunderbolt link and you get just a tiny monster. What I really like about Focusrite is they don’t compromise design when creating great sound products. It’s a wonder to appear and is rack-mountable, occupying 2 rack units.

The runner-up would function as Universal Audio Apollo Twin Duo but it has a huge drawback: the number of inputs! Although it is more than suitable for a house studio, you can’t record any massive session with no external microphone preamp that is rather disappointing. So, second place goes to its close relative, the Scarlett 18i20. In terms of sound, the UR44, as well as the 18i20, are rather equivalent however, the 18i20 wins this comparison because of its extended i/o and connectivity.

M-Audio M-Track Portable USB Audio and MIDI Interface

This is a simple plugin and plays with a sound interface which transforms your personal computer into a sophisticated sound recording system.

It has a single USB cable powers up the apparatus and also connects it to a workstation.

It is a 2 channel sound interface that makes it very easy to join and capture two mics in precisely the same moment.

It has input ports that can accommodate a vast selection of sound devices. It also has a phantom power capability that helps with increased quantity if using a condenser microphone.

It offers low latency observation of this your input signal that makes it significantly easier to track your songs when recording.

It comes packed with its own Ignite software which makes it quite easy to start documenting your vocals.

IK Multimedia Axe I/O

IK Multimedia is a really underrated audio firm.

It’s likely because they have a tendency to be popular with conventional musicians instead of producers, but that’s no reason to look past them. They make some excellent software and hardware, and also the Axe I/O is no exception for this.

The brand new Axe I/O is designed as a blend of an amp simulator along with a sound port, for those who enjoy their guitar.


  • 2 quarter-inch inputs
  • 2 lineup in (XLR/quarter-inch) inputs
  • 4 quarter-inch outputs
  • Headphones Out
  • Amp Out
  • Pedal switch controller
  • MIDI In/Out
  • USB Connectivity
  • Amp preset knob
  • Level indicators
  • Includes AmpliTube 4 software
  • Separate power supply

Our Take

If you prefer to record the guitar, then this is a fantastic alternative. The flexibility of this AmpliTube software together with a well-designed interface makes this very the deal, especially for under $500.



  • Mac & PC & iOS devices
  • Supports all Significant DAWs


  • Highly reputable brand
  • 24-channel mobile solution
  • An Extremely portable audio interface
  • Aluminum chassis for successful protection
  • High-quality internal circuitry to get low-latency
  • Includes software
  • RME’s TotalMix FX
  • Warranty: 2-Year Manufacturers Warranty


  • USB 2.0/3.0 connectivity
  • 2 XLR inputs
  • 2 XLR outputs
  • MIDI input/output
  • ADAT input/output
  • 2 headset line outputs
  • 24-bit/192 kHz resolution
  • 20 Hz 35 kHz Frequency Response
  • A power adapter or bus-powered
  • 48v Phantom Power


The Babyface Guru by RME is among the most mobile audio interfaces that we have featured on the list, besides in the Apogee Duet of course.

Despite the unit’s size, it has a range of connectivity ports, such as XLR inputs/outputs, Line, MIDI & ADAT inputs/outputs, which makes it quite versatile for those who need several input/output types.

Moreover, the device is housed in an aluminum chassis, also runs on bus-power or an external power supply… All of that is completely up to yourself.

Not merely have RME made a well-built audio port, but they have especially prioritized their efforts about the inner circuitry, together with it containing the latest creation of low latency AD/DA converters, in conjunction with RME’s’Steadyclock’ technologies, that helps further decrease noise, helping develop a noise-free, transparent output sound.

In general, with that said, that the RME Babyface Guru is perfect for those who desire a mobile audio port, using a broader selection of inputs/outputs compared to similarly-sized Apogee Duet.


  • Premium quality merchandise
  • Extremely portable
  • Bus-powered or mains powered
  • Very mobile
  • 2-year manufacturers guarantee


  • Quite expensive when taking into Consideration input/output capability

Arturia AudioFuse

Launch cost: $599/519/$599 | Connectivity: USB 2 | Audio resolution: 24-bit/192kHz | Analogue inputs: 4 | Analogue outputs: 4 | Digital connectivity: ADAT I/O and S/PDIF I/O | MIDI I/O: Yes

AudioFuse is an appealing and mobile Mac, PC and iOS-compatible interface using a raft of features. Despite its compact framework, there’s lots of connectivity available. On the front edge, you will discover combi inputs and two completely independent headphone feeds. Subsequently, these may accommodate equally mini-jack along with 1/4-inch plugs.

In the back, you will find speaker outputs for two pairs of monitors, line flat connectors, MIDI In/Out ports (that, because of size restrictions, have been substituted with mini-jack connectors, which you’ll see in the box) and for electronic interfacing – equally S/PDIF along with ADAT In/Out. There are also inserts for inputs 1 and 2, enabling you to monitor through hardware compressors or station strips.

AudioFuse connects via USB 2, but USB connectivity goes farther; Arturia has assembled a USB hub in to it, supplying three extra USB ports. AudioFuse provides a lovely and contemporary solution to USB audio interfacing with a fantastic design, compatibility with a massive variety of possible sound sources, a fantastic sound, and an extremely tactile control set.

Avid HD I/O

This is a sophisticated interface made by Avid, for use with Pro Tools just. Not for the faint of heart. It comes in an 8x8x8 or even a 16x16x16 config.


  • 8/16 analog inputs
  • 8/16 analog outputs
  • Digital input/output section
  • Advanced metering section
  • AES/EBU, TDIF, and ADAT connectivity

Our Take

To be honest, when you reach this degree, devices compete for less on trivialities like looks and much more about features. Every device also tends to have a strong purpose. For your HD, it’s the Pro Tools integration that makes this the port of choice for all engineers. However, for digital music producers, that’s most likely not likely to be the case. Plus, it still relies on more obsolete (but still dependable ) methods of electronic link.

Steinberg AXR4

Launch cost: $2,799/2,200/$2,499 | Connectivity: Thunderbolt 2 | Audio resolution: 32-bit/384kHz | Analogue inputs: 28 | Analogue outputs: 24 | Digital connectivity: ADAT, S/PDIF, AES/EBU I/O | MIDI I/O: Yes

Steinberg has entered the Thunderbolt sound race together with the AXR4, a rack-mountable port aimed at professional producers and engineers. This 28-in/24-outbox offers latency-free DSP-powered tracking and effects, stacks of I/O and a good deal of navigation flexibility. Upfront there are four Neutrik combo inputs and 2 headphone outputs, while the rear panel houses eight TRS line inputs, eight TRS line outputs and 2 sets of ADAT I/O doubling as S/PDIF.

The second set provides an alternate AES/EBU Sub-D connector. MIDI I/O sits alongside term clock I/O, whereas two Thunderbolt 2 ports enable computer link and daisy-chaining of around three interfaces. The four hybrid mic preamps gain from elegant transformer circuitry and Rupert Neve Designs SILK processing, while DSP effects comprise the VCM 276 compressor, VCM EQ601, the Sweet Spot Morphing Channel Strip and the REV-X reverb.

The Steinberg AXR4 oozes quality from every pore, which makes it a serious contender in the professional audio caked arena.

TASCAM US-1200 USB Audio Interface

The TASCAM audio port is an excellent interface that works well with both PCs and Macs.

It has four XLR inputs which have a 48V phantom power for powering condenser mics along with other devices.

It has two TRS 1/4 inches balanced inputs which help you join as many networking devices or input devices as you desire.

It has low latency monitoring that occurs via the DSP mixer which allows you to operate with virtual plugins and instruments

It comes with onboard digital effects for use in various working modes.

How to Select The Correct Audio Interface For The Requirements

As we have discussed inside our other sound interface buyers guides, it’s important to remember a couple of things before making a decision on a specific sound port.

We can safely assume that cost is a significant aspect, with this article being around sound interfaces below $1000, however, There Are Lots of other basic aspects to look for, here are the main ones:

Audio Interface Plugs

It’s given that every person seeking to purchase a sound port for $1000 or less may have different usage requirements, and also a huge aspect of usage is that the range of inputs and outputs which are readily available for you.

By way of example, those that are searching for an audio port that is capable of recording a live group session will need more inputs compared to say that a singer/songwriter or a vlogger/live streamer.


Each sound interface will have distinct connectivity types, which range from USB, Firewire, through to Thunderbolt, and that’s not to mention that the upgrades, as an example, USB 2.0, USB 3.0, etc.. In general, the newer the technologies used, the faster the connection, and also the less likely there’ll be any type of roundtrip latency.


To put it simply, the higher the bitrate and sample rate, the greater the overall sound quality. For that reason, it’s very important to keep this in mind when choosing an audio port.

Most of the sound interfaces which we have featured in this article have bitrates of 24-bit and provide sample rates up to 192kHz, meaning they account for enharmonic frequencies (both lower and high pitches) and perform a fantastic job in converting the analog sound into digital.

But with that said, most sound engineers may assert that sample rates over 96kHz don’t supply some”intrinsic sound quality improvements across the 20Hz-20kHz area” [SoundonSound], as it’s beyond the scope of human hearing.


This is another important aspect to consider, as particular interfaces won’t be harmonious with specific Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs).

Furthermore, device compatibility is another important consideration, using specific sound interfaces being compatible with Mac, PC or an iOS apparatus such as the iPhone or iPad. If you’re searching for an Ipad recording port, then certainly check the specifications! None-the-less, we will certainly indicate which interfaces are suitable for specific devices.


Since you’re definitely planning to spend $1000 or less within a sound port, making sure it has an adequate product warranty/guarantee is vital.

Thus, we are going to make sure to underline the length and variety of guarantee supplied with every audio interface which we urge further below.


So where are you going to maintain this new sound port, is it in your desk along with your other music gear, or actually held in a stand alone?

If you are able to answer these questions, you will have a very clear indication as to the physical requirements and limits you’ve got on your audio port.


For some shoppers, the brand could be everything. And whilst we concur that new recognition is essential, as it’s very likely to demonstrate that the provider provides good high-quality products, hence they are talked about a lot and earn fans and faithful users, do your best to not discount newer brands.

With that said, we have done hours of research and customer review tests to locate the creme-de-la-creme of these sound interfaces, and we have featured all them further below.

As we just mentioned, we do hours of research to locate these products and analyze all the customer reviews to ultimately figure out whether we should select the merchandise to our list.

So let’s get to it, what would be the best sound interfaces for under $1000 in 2020?


High sound interfaces are expensive, but they certainly have lots to provide for the hefty price tags that they include.

In all honestly, this kind of gear transcends the experience you might have had with a reasonable audio port.

Whether lightning-fast connections or more I/O options than you know what to do together, you’ve entered professional land where a good operation is ensured!

The models we’ve highlighted in our graph are undoubtedly some of the best in the marketplace in 2018. Whether you opt for a few of these or explore the marketplace by yourself, we all hope this guide has been of use and provided a small inspiration. Fantastic luck with your new port!


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