The Best Sound Card for Cubase Pro!!

Hi guys,
I could do with your expert advise. I need a new ‘professional’ sound card, ideally one that still has phono and Jack connections in and out (I still use a lot of old equipment to transfer audio). Seems every time I buy one good card within a year or two it’s no longer supported. I started ogena Darla sound cards
f with the Echo Darla and Gina cards back in the day, now I have a ASUS Xonar Essence STX, but since Win 8.1 it’s no longer fully supported. It does have a nice low latency of 10ms but I’d like to get that down to under 6ms, that’s a rather important feature.

I’m very interested to know what you guys use and recommend as a good solid pro sound card, and a safe bet it’ll be supported in future releases of windows and Cubase pro updates? :slight_smile: thanks in advance

If you want compatibility and good quality, I’d go for one of Steinbergs UR44 or UR824,

If you want a proper professional interface that’ll last you a decade, go with RME. They still support their interfaces from over 10 years ago with updates to keep them working on current systems. They’re not cheap though, and I’m not aware of a model that has phono inputs, but you’d have to do some research there.

If you factor in all the time you will have wasted over the years with cheaper interfaces, RME really aren’t that much more expensive. As you mention phonos, you should consider an external preamp with a digital (S/PDIF) output in order to keep the low-level signals out of the electrically noisy environment of a computer. Alternately, go USB with something from ESI, which has ASIO drivers.

Hi guys thanks for ideas, I plumped for the Roland Duo Ex today, thought it was good value from money!
Now I’m rather regretful as I’m finding it only support 44.1 or 48khz sampling rate, and since i have a variety of projects using a mix of the two sample rates I’m constantly having to power off the Duo EX, change the setting switch to and from 44.1/48 and power on again or it will just show as unsuported sample rate in cubase. This is a real pain and not what I expected for a pro card.

My old card (not even dedicatied to pro audio) could handle any sample rate change inside of the project settings and switch automaticlaly without unsupported messages or the need to power the card on and off.
Any ideas on another card to imporve on this featrue with a budget of £300?

ps. RME are too expensive

^^^^ What he said! ^^^^

what about if I want it to be good compatibitly with Adobe Premiere and other DAW’s, I’ve heard this isn’t so good then!? :unamused:

I would imagine that the Steinberg specific functionality wouldn’t work in other DAWS but that would only mean it works like any other interface in its class. Go into the unknown at your own risk. Whatever you choose will be better than what you have now…

It does amuse me when I see thread with words like “best” and “professional” but then they want it for the price of a packet of crisps. Things are the “best” of and “professional” for a reason.

Rant over, the Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 has an excellent reputation for sound quality (high spec DACs) and really nice pre-amps. I don’t know how good it is at switching sample rates but it is done in software unlike your Roland which needs a flick of a switch and reboot.

DV247 flog it for a very reasonable £179:

That gives you a spare £120 to look for any breakout cable/box options to make use of the SPDIF interface. If you have an old DAT machine then you can plug it straight in.

Obviously being a USB device the latency is never going to compete with a PCIe card, but they claim it’s low.