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Babyface vs USBpre2? (For preamp quality, etc)
Sauve Premis
post May 13 2012, 19:45
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Hey all.

I keep hearing that the two 'best' interfaces in the mid price range are the RME babyface and the SD USBPre2. My question is, hwo do they compare to each other? I know the babyface offers a LOT more channels, plus MIDI, whilst the USBPre2 only offers 2 channels and no midi. From a UK standpoint, the USBPre2 is also nearly 100 more expensive than the babyface.

Seeing as the babyface seems to win in connectivity features, how do they compare for sheer quality? The SD unit looks a lot more well built, but how about it's A/D D/A converters and preamps? Do they blow the babyface's out of water, or is it so close that they might as well as be even? How about the latency?

Was just wondering as I'm going to drop the ball on either one shortly, but I have no idea which one I should go for (I'm basically looking for pure quality, doubt I'd need more than 2 channels anyway, although it IS nice to have them there).


The only main thing I have seen against the USBPre2 so far is:

QUOTE
I cannot recommend this interface for Windows users at the current time, due to the issues noted above and some intermittent cyclic sample rate issues. (You can hear what that sounds like here: http://www.2shared.com/file/9CyrgcFH/usbp2_test01.html) I've tested this on multiple machines, and even my new box after a reformat.

No one from the SD forums has replied to my concerns since August, and I guess I'm going to go back to email support to see if I can get this figured out... If not I guess I will be selling this unit and getting an RME babyface.
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Brand
post May 13 2012, 21:19
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According to a RMAA test the Babyface has a slight roll off at the bottom end:
http://issuu.com/albenix81/docs/rme_babyfa..._musicsoundtech

Other than that (which might or might not be significant to you), I've heard good things about it.
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Arnold B. Kruege...
post May 14 2012, 14:34
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QUOTE (Brand @ May 13 2012, 16:19) *
According to a RMAA test the Babyface has a slight roll off at the bottom end:
http://issuu.com/albenix81/docs/rme_babyfa..._musicsoundtech

Other than that (which might or might not be significant to you), I've heard good things about it.


I'd love to read the RMAA report, but the site goes to blank page when I click the graphic.
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pdq
post May 14 2012, 14:50
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QUOTE (Arnold B. Krueger @ May 14 2012, 09:34) *
I'd love to read the RMAA report, but the site goes to blank page when I click the graphic.

I was able to see the report, but then there was no way to exit out of it other than Task Manager.
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Brand
post May 14 2012, 16:25
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Works fine for me. Try viewing it with Flash disabled.

Here's another one:
http://html.midifan.com/review/babyface/[M...alog%202448.htm
Shows worse noise/crosstalk performance (maybe because the SR is different), but the low freq roll off is the same.
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Arnold B. Kruege...
post May 14 2012, 22:33
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QUOTE (Brand @ May 14 2012, 11:25) *
Works fine for me. Try viewing it with Flash disabled.

Here's another one:
http://html.midifan.com/review/babyface/[M...alog%202448.htm
Shows worse noise/crosstalk performance (maybe because the SR is different), but the low freq roll off is the same.



The gentle roll off below 50 Hz isn't all that serious of a problem from an audibility viewpoint.
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Sauve Premis
post May 15 2012, 13:23
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I see, thanks for that.

So all in all, it's probably not worth the extra 100 expense compared to the babyface?

I've also heard a suggestion that I could get an audient Mico for around the same price, and then use an interface with SPDIF to get the sound into the computer. Looking at the mico, it looks seriously impressive, and I probably be safe in guessing it blows both the rme and sd out of the water - but I don't see too much reviews. How much do you guys know?

Thanks.
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Ron Jones
post May 15 2012, 17:26
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Probably not worth the extra coin, no. The USBPre, like other Sound Devices products, is built to endure a good deal of abuse and torture. If you aren't running around outdoors, beating the hell out of your interface, then it's unlikely you need to spend the extra money. Both RME and Sound Devices make good products, so I don't think you can go wrong with either, in my opinion.

With regards to the Mico, I don't really have any opinion. I very much doubt that it "blows the Babyface and USBPre 2 out of the water", though. If there's any kind of zenith for quality, the RME and USBPre 2 are likely to be exceptionally close to it, which leaves little room for others to improve in any kind of dramatic or even particularly meaningful way.
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Sauve Premis
post May 16 2012, 17:33
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I see, thanks for that.

I may get the Mico then. It's 150 cheaper than the USBPre2, and then I could get an interface with SPDIF and MIDI (solves the no midi issue of the USBPre2) and it could still come to a lower total cost. I don't need to go out in the field, so the ruggedness of the USBpre2, while attractive, I probably wouldn't make use of.

Someone also suggested the Dav BG-1 as being better than all of those listed, but I haven't seen too much comparisons. I'm not sure if at that level it turns to the standard audiophile 'pseudo' effect or not, haha.
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