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In-depth Feature:  Edirol UR-80
Nick B writes: .

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...continued

Audio Interface
The audio interface is essentially the guts of the UA-5 (somewhat updated) popped in the case of the UR-80. This is fine and gives you reasonable connectivity although I wouldn?t have minded another pair of analog outputs for external processing of signals. Though you can use the digital outs pre-fade. As it stands, the analog output is sent via the monitor volume knob and is ideally suited to integrate with your monitor system ? especially active monitors. This is often overlooked in mobile solutions and is a godsend. Having a knob to turn when you want to turn the level down or up is not in my opinion a luxury, and it?s great to see this on the UR-80. There is also a single (sadly only one) headphone out, so jamming with a friend may be tricky in some instances where more than one headphone is needed.

I have to say that I thought the audio sounded pretty good with a healthy output level and was easy to hook up to my monitor system, once I found the right adaptors - the output is on phono plugs. A really nice feature is the built in direct monitoring, hit the input button and you can listen to the inputs at zero latency mixed in with whatever is coming back from the computer. The input monitor button toggles between off/ two mono sources panned centrally and stereo - the two inputs panned hard left and right. So in a squeeze, you can use the UR-80 as a very basic 2 channel mixer.

Mic and line input s are handy for grabbing audio on the go , the inclusion of phantom power a useful extra and one no doubt enabled by the external power supply. Digital outs are as far as I can tell just a mirror of the analog outs pre-fader (the monitor level)

One thing that is pretty handy in the UR-80 is that it allows recording and playback of up 24-bit/96kHz, which will mean that you can use it on those hi res sessions away from the main studio without too much fuss. I suppose that you could conceivably use it for high resolution location recording with a laptop too though I suspect that you might want to use alternative A to D convertors when it really mattered - not that the UR-80 doesn't sound good, just that I suspect a recording of that resolution would warrant something slightly further up the food chain as it were.

For more serious project recording on the move, the UR-80 may not quite fit your bill. As it only has a single pair of analog outs it's almost impossible to buss out for external processing, something I often feel the need for - like processing with an external filter for example. Adding another pair of outs would really make all the difference and make the UR-80 so much more useful.

More Resources              Articles - full listing
  • Drivers, Templates and more UR-80 info
  • Yahoo EDPCR Group
  • Hear HyperCanvas
  • UR-80 Price@Samedaymusic

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