With the rise of USB type C, the need to get the Best USB-C Audio Interface has increased. Only relying on internal hardware like on-board sound cards is no longer serviceable if you want a high-quality recording. As such, now what you need is to know which interface is suitable.
However, that is no longer an easy task to do, as the demand has created a huge surplus of supply. The main consequence of this surplus is that there are so many available options on the market currently. That is why we prepared this list of the 10 best options, each with its own strengths.
- The Best USB-C Audio Interface
- 1. Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB Audio Interface 3rd Gen – Best All-Around
- 2. Focusrite Scarlett Solo Studio USB Audio Interface 3rd Gen – Best Converter Performance
- 3. Steinberg UR22C USB Type-C Audio Interface – Best For Mixed Recording
- 4. Zoom PodTrak P4 Battery Powered Audio Interface – Best For PodCast
- 5. M-Audio AIR 192|4 USB Audio Interface – Ultra-Low Latency
- 6. PreSonus Studio B07L9MWWDK USB-C Audio Interface – Best Input Monitoring
- 7. MOTU M2 USB-C Audio Interface – Best Gain
- 8. M-Audio AIR|HUB 3-Port Hub USB Audio Interface – Best Software
- 9. SSL SSL2+ USB-C Audio Interface – Best Analogue Colour Enhancement
The Best USB-C Audio Interface
1. Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB Audio Interface 3rd Gen – Best All-Around
From preamps to converters, the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB Audio Interface 3rd Gen is leaps and bounds above its competitors.
- USB 2.0 Protocol: Suitable for almost all types of devices, as USB 2.0 is the currently most used protocol
- 2 x 2 Simultaneous I/O: Making it possible to connect separately into two devices
- 2 High-quality Preamp: Producing higher and brighter sounds thanks to the switchable air model
The two preamps of this interface are unarguably the best performing across the entire Scarlett range. Thanks to being added to a new tech, the switchable air mode, they can produce more open and brighter sounds.
The converters are also quite spectacular, as they can produce some high-quality mixing. Furthermore, they do not require the help of any external drivers, significantly reducing latency. Together, these two features and the phantom power make this interface the Best USB-C Audio Interface.
You do need to spend quite some time registering for all the bundled software. If you are the impatient type, this can be quite annoying.
- The two preamps have switchable air mode.
- It has high-quality converters.
- There is no need for external drivers.
- It takes a while to set up the bundled software.
2. Focusrite Scarlett Solo Studio USB Audio Interface 3rd Gen – Best Converter Performance
If it’s strictly converter performance, the Focusrite Scarlett Solo Studio USB Audio Interface may even challenge the Best USB-C Audio Interface spot.
- 24-bit, 192kHz Converters: Highest for sound-mixing at the casual level
- Condenser Microphone: Good for recording vocals and providing studio-level reproduction
- USB 2.0 Protocol: The current most popular protocol, you can find it available on most devices
This interface has converters that are capable of recording and mixing at a maximum of 24-bit, 192 kHz sounds. This is the epitome of sound-mixing in the casual market, as going any higher may just not be worth it.
Furthermore, the interface has a very high-quality condenser mic, which helps tremendously in recording sounds with studio-level quality. These sounds will also stay faithful to the source, even after serious amplification.
The build quality of this product is not that high, though. As such, you may need to be careful while handling it.
- It has high-quality converters.
- The mic records sound faithful.
- It is easy to set up.
- The build quality is lacking.
3. Steinberg UR22C USB Type-C Audio Interface – Best For Mixed Recording
If you love to play instruments while singing, this Steinberg UR22CUSB Type-C Audio Interface is the perfect choice.
- Super speed USB-C with USB 3.1 Gen 1: This is currently the fastest possible protocol for audio equipment.
- Class-A D-PRE preamps: They are capable of capturing all expressiveness as well as subtleties.
- High Head-room Instrument Input: You can use it for recording instruments on top of vocals.
Thanks to having 2 Class-A D-PRE preamps, this interface can faithfully reproduce all kinds of instruments alongside your voice. They can capture anything, from the most expressive sounds to the most subtle ones. There is nothing that it has a bad time against, be it drums or pianos.
The super-fast USB-C with USB 3.1 Gen 1 setup means you experience almost no latency. Anyone who works as a sound engineer loves this kind of responsiveness.
However, the software accompanying this interface is not that useful. You may need to get something else.
- The instrument inputs are placed strategically.
- It can record any instrument alongside your vocal
- The class A preamps are good at soothing sounds.
- The bundled software is not that good.
4. Zoom PodTrak P4 Battery Powered Audio Interface – Best For PodCast
There is no device as good as the Zoom PodTrak P4 Battery Powered Audio Interface for podcasting.
- 4 high quality input/output with individual volume control: It provides a level of versatility that is unheard of, allowing for huge mix and match potential.
- Automatic Mix-Minus: This feature makes phone interviews much more manageable and clearer.
- 11 presets Sound Pad: This pad allows you to record 11 sound effects to easily play during the podcast.
This interface has 4 high quality input connecting to active speakers. Each of these inputs has its own volume control. All of your podcast guests can now customize their mic as they see fit.
The interface’s Automatic Mix-Minus makes call-in phone interviews easier than ever. Gone are the days that you need to focus really hard to hear what the other person is saying. Now, this feature will automatically adjust the input so that the sound can be clearer.
Nevertheless, there are cases where the device generates a bass tone distortion if you turn the speakers up too much.
- It has 4 individual inputs.
- Automatic Mix-Minus makes it much easier to interviews by phone.
- Sound Pad allows fast sound effects.
- There is a chance of bass tone distortion.
5. M-Audio AIR 192|4 USB Audio Interface – Ultra-Low Latency
If you are not a fan of delays, the M-Audio AIR 192|4 USB Audio Interface will surely satisfy you.
- 192 kHz Converter: The highest on the casual market provides high definition sounds.
- Stereo/Headphones Output: It addes a layer of versatility to the output.
- Ultra-Low Latency: 2.59 ms, the round trip is so fast you will barely feel anything.
The USB type-C circuitry offers quite a high data turnaround speed thanks to its incredibly fast connection. To be more specific, a round trip of data will only take up at a maximum of 2.59 milliseconds.
The layout of this audio interface is very intuitive, making it easier to use, even for newer audiophiles. You do not need to spend too much time learning about how to record with this interface.
However, you need to keep in mind that this interface driver is not supported by newer processing units.
- The latency is incredibly low.
- The control layout is intuitive.
- The driver may not be compatible with newer processors.
6. PreSonus Studio B07L9MWWDK USB-C Audio Interface – Best Input Monitoring
Many recorders need to monitor their input constantly, which the PreSonus Studio B07L9MWWDK USB-C Audio Interface is the best at.
- 192 kHz Converter: The highest possible converter on the casual market provides 24-bit sounds.
- 2 XMAX-L Preamps: It amplifies the input without muddying it at all and provide some sound clarity.
- Pro-grade Input Meter: You can receive clear insight of the input’s fluctuation.
Right at the center of its front is a professional-grade meter to measure the input. With the help of this meter, you can clearly observe the fluctuation of the input signal. As such, you can make appropriate adjustments immediately.
The interface can work with sound going as high as 192 kHz. In other words, you can be sure that the output will be as high-definition as possible.
We do want to complain about the lack of support from the manufacturer post-sale. There is just no way to contact customer support currently.
- It has a professional-grade input meter.
- The audio quality is high definition.
- The support is lacking.
7. MOTU M2 USB-C Audio Interface – Best Gain
If you are looking for a high-gain item, the MOTU M2 USB-C Audio Interface is the answer.
- LCD Screen: Using it lets you observe the changes more clearly with more parameters.
- Hardware monitoring: It monitors and give clear reports on how the hardware is doing and some insight.
- Background Noise Rejection: 70%, it ignores almost all of the background noises.
You can use this machine to adjust the sound to -3 dB, yet the background dial will not reach 70%. In other words, this interface can limit the amplification of background noise to a minimum while increasing the gain significantly.
The rugged build makes it so that the entire interface is as solid as possible. It also gives the product a more pleasing aesthetics.
There is, however, one weird issue. If you put this interface near a DBX 286S, it will produce a weird bursting effect.
- This interface has the best gains.
- The rugged build improves durability.
- It can have weird bursting effects.
8. M-Audio AIR|HUB 3-Port Hub USB Audio Interface – Best Software
The M-Audio AIR|HUB 3-Port Hub USB Audio Interface has the best software combination that we have seen.
- USB 2.0 Protocol: This protocol is the most popular at the moment for audio gear in general.
- Compact build: The build can save space as well as make it easier to take it with you on trips.
- Good Software: M-Audio Pro Tools, Avid Effects, etc., are all the most popular ones.
This product offers M-Audio Pro Tools Edition, eleven Lite, and Avid Effects, all of which are among the highest-quality on the market. With these software, you can edit your sound quickly and efficiently.
The output audio of this interface is also quite balanced, thanks to the high-quality converters. You will never have to worry about the dreaded hum that unbalanced interfaces tend to produce.
We do want to warn you that the cables accompanying this device are not good enough. Using them may lead to high latency.
- The accompanying software is all high-quality.
- It has balanced output audio, no hums.
- The cables are low-quality
9. SSL SSL2+ USB-C Audio Interface – Best Analogue Colour Enhancement
The SSL SSL2+ USB-C Audio Interface can give you the same feel as a magnetic tape recording.
- LED preamp meter: The meter ensures clear insight on the preamp operation as well as easier control
-130.5 dB Noise floor: This noise floor is good at ensuring the perfect condition for analogue color enhancement.
- 192 kHz converters: The highest currently for casual sound-mixing lets you produce high-def audios.
This device can reproduce convincing harmonic as well as non-harmonic distortions thanks to its Legacy 4K tech. As we all know, these are the by-products of inductors and transformers within old SSL consoles. Instead of dragging the sound quality down, they imbue it with a special warmth.
Each of the preamps has a LED meter divided into 5 segments. You can easily see how much change is made in real-time. Also, these preamps’ noise floor is ultra-low, at -130.5 dB.
There is no high-pass filter within this unit, which is very vital to have a clear recording. You cannot cut down on the low rumble as much.
- The Legacy 4K tech provides a warm analogue colour enhancement.
- The noise floor is very low.
- It does not have a high-pass filter.
If you are interested in buying a bundle at once, see our suggestion of some recording packages that worth to buy.
Having the Best USB-C Audio Interface means you get your hands on a multitude of additional features. While something like an on-board sound card can only take specific input types, an audio interface can receive more. For instance, audio interfaces can work with both ¼” jack and XLR.
Of course, picking a high-quality interface is not an easy job, as there are just so many on the market. Our recommendation is to pick one out of the 10 options we present, specifically the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2. This product has good preamps as well as converters, both of which are vital for recording.