Today is the first review I am completing of an Audio Interface. I am diving into these devices because the USB Audio Adapters that I have been recommending have been altered and no longer provide sufficient voltage to power certain mass produced condenser microphones. So today I am starting with the $30 Behringer U-Phoria UM2 Audio Interface. This is a 2-input / 2-output USB device so you can connect an XLR or 1/4" sound source to your computer.
What's In the Box
- USB Cable
- Quick-Start Guide
Performance / Features
The build of this thing is all plastic and it does not feel durable. The input jacks feel a little bit loose and the gain controls are a bit wobbly as well. However, if you keep this on your home studio desk, I don't think you will have any trouble with this thing. You just need to be careful with this thing.
The interface offers two inputs. The first input is a combo jack, meaning it can accept an XLR cable or a 1/4" cable. The second input is strictly a 1/4" cable. Next to each input there are two lights, the first is to let you know that the interface is picking up the signal, and the second light will blink red when you are clipping (too loud).
We also get +48v Phantom Power on this thing. There is a switch on the back that allows you to toggle the power on/off. I measured the voltage pass through when the power was switched on and I measured ~+46v. So this should be able to provide sufficient voltage to most, if not all, condenser microphones.
The interface provides two outputs as well. The first output is a 1/4" headphone output jack on the front. The second is an RCA output on the back so you can connect this to studio monitors, or an amplifier.
When it comes to noise, this thing gets pretty noisy once we pass 75% on the gain knobs. Fortunately, when using a condenser microphone, I doubt you will get above 60%. However, if you're using a dynamic microphone, you may need to crank the gain and you may get stuck with some nasty hiss.
- Extremely Cheap
- +48v Phantom Power
- Gain Control Knob
- Clipping Indicator Light
- Plastic build quality
- High Noise Past 75% Gain
I really like this interface. I think it's a great starting interface since it is so cheap. It offers a single XLR input so you can plug in your condenser microphone and get a full +48v. I would recommend this to anyone who is considering getting a USB Soundcard to power a condenser microphone. Those soundcards are not designed to power microphones, therefore you will have to invest in a phantom power supply, and that takes your total cost to around $25-$30. You might as well just purchase this interface instead. It provides more features and was designed to actually work with your microphone.
If you have any additional questions about this headset, leave them in the comments on this site or on the youtube channel, and I will try to reply ASAP.