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Focusrite iTrack Solo Dual Input Audio Interface

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Focusrite iTrack Solo Focusrite's iTrack Solo dual-input audio interface is actually two interfaces in one. It is a USB 2.0 audio interface that works in both your Mac or PC up to 24-bit/96kHz and also functions as iOS device audio interface for Apple's iPad and iPhone. The iTrack Solo comes in an all-aluminum cabinet that's slightly smaller than the Scarlett 2i2 USB interface and borrows that unit's clever halo indicators that surround the two input level control knobs. The halos are for simply setting the correct level in green and, as an instant high level warning indicator, when they turn red.

I tested the iTrack Solo using three different DAWS: Pro Tools HD 10.2 Accel--OS 10.6.8 ( "iTrack Solo" shows up in the Playback Engine pull down) and as an interface running at 96kHz the latest update (for 6.0 iOS) of Wavemachine Labs' Auria on iPad and Sonoma Wire Works' FourTrack app (44.1kHz 16-bit) on my iPhone 4S. Other iOS Apps like GarageBand are also supported.

I found the iTrack's functionality to be the same in all three systems--it's easy to use, is stable and produces a great sound for both the recording inputs and the stereo monitoring outputs. The mic pre-amp (same as the Liquid Saffire 56 and Scarlett interfaces) has plenty of gain when using old ribbon or vintage dynamic microphones with typically low output level. The high impedance 1/4-inch direct input worked well when recording piezoelectric pickups or my Fender Strat's passive pickups.

It's super easy to make two-track recordings on the iTrack Solo. While in record, I switched on Direct Monitoring on the front panel and recorded a vocal mic and direct guitar at the same time--their signals automatically route to input 1 and 2 in either Pro Tools or Auria.

+48-volt phantom powering is available immediately by way of a lighted front panel on/off push button when using the unit connected to a computer's USB 2.0 port but with iOS DAWs, you'll need to use the included USB cable & power supply.

iTrack Solo comes with a very short (6-inches), proprietary Device Link cable for connection to your iOS's 30-pin dock connector. Done so to insure that both the iTrack Solo and the iOS device perform correctly when connected to an old 2G network, you should be in Airplane mode whilst using an iOS device for a DAW anyway. For my convenience, I used a 24-inch, CableJive dockXtender extension cable and had no problems at all even while maintaining a WiFi connection to upload/download audio files to Dropbox™.

Focusrite iTrack Solo The iTrack Solo's single large volume control sets level for both the phones and the -10dBv unbalanced RCA L/R output jacks on the rear panel--these are provided for driving powered monitors. Headphone volume level was ample for my Shure SRH940's 55-ohm impedance and my monitoring speaker volume was sufficient after I ramped up my Adam 2.5A's input level sensitivity.

I'm impressed! iTrack Solo is a great idea for the on-the-go songwriter, musician or voice-over artist who want to record in high quality anywhere and rely on those recordings to be master-ready quality later in the studio. The iTrack Solo sells for $159 MAP and for more information, check out: http://us.focusrite.com/itrack-solo.



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