|The audio interface or sound card is commonly known as the core of your home recording. The audio interface is basically an audio device that allow you to hook up to all your gears such as microphones, headphones, effect processors, preamp, studio monitors, MIDI controller as well as musical instrument to start your recording. In more technical explanation, the audio interface basically convert and transport your analog signal to digital signal or digital signal to analog signal.|
Want to know little bit more about physics of the signal encoding method? We will be cover some basic on our later chapter. 😊
For most home studio, the USB connection of audio interface is still the first choice to go due to its compatibility with most of the devices.
4.2. Numbers of Audio Input/Output?
Input - Microphone, Instruments, MIDI or Line (Synthesizer, Mixer, Effect Processors, Preamplifier) Output - Headphone, Monitors, Subwoofers
For solo musicians or home recording enthusiast, 2 - 4 inputs are the best to go. If you are recording a group of people or instrument which require to record many different tracks at once, you may need more than 4 or up to 20.
4.3. Audio Driver Support
The most common audio drivers which we used to see in Windows recording are WDM/Wave, ASIO or WaveRT. For Mac recording, you will be using CoreAudio USB Driver.
In this chapter, we ain't going to dive into Wave, Wave RT, or any other audio driver, we will talk about ASIO, one of the widely used audio driver in the industry. Most of the audio interface nowadays integrated or provide the in-house ASIO driver (which usually comes with installation CD). For some audio interface that doesn't come with ASIO driver, you may also go to http://www.asio4all.com/ to download.
4 facts you need to know about ASIO:
- ASIO is a trademark of Steinberg Media Technologies Gmbh
- Act as a driver that allowing your DAW to communicate with your audio interface
- Introduce extremely low latency and high fidelity which is great when you are doing your recording and also real time monitoring simultaneously
- Best to use when using a lot audio input and output.