UR22 and too hot HiZ signal

I have tried my UR22 unit with an electric guitar plugged on the input 2 with Hi Z enabled than the signal goes to Amplitube 3 on my computer.

With a first guitar, a LesPaul with a vintage Humbucker the input signal is ok and all works fine.

But with my second guitar, a LesPaul junior with an original P90 single coil mic, the signal is too hot, even with the input gain knob at the minimal position the signal is clipping and create an audible saturation that is not welcome with clear sounds.
Is there a way (like a pad) to lower the input gain on the UR22 ?

I have tried to plug this guitar on an little Mackie Blackjack an a RME baby face with the HiZ enabled, and on those 2 units the signal can be lowered so as there’s no clipping problem.


I’ll respond concerning the UR824. I suspect that unit and the UR22 have the same circuitry. I have had
little success with the Hi-Z circuit. In fact, I’ve been using the rear inputs of the UR824 and ignore the
two (Hi-Z) on the front. I haven’t tried our UR22 with a guitar yet, but I don’t have any confidence it will
be any different. I suggest, leave the Hi-Z off with that guitar and increase the gain. That will increase noise,
but editing the file or other measures can be taken. A lot of extra work.


Thanks for the answer tim.

ThIs may be a solution, but i have tried this the Guitar sound is more muffled than with the Hi-Z on.
I’ve got a 824 too, haven’t plug the guitar on this unit but I think that is the same circuit too.

the problem is that I have bought the UR22 only as a portable solution to play/record guitar directly on Cubase7 with Amplitube3 and it seems that is wasn’t the good choice (if there no solution to reduce the input gain). :confused:

My old little Mackie Onyx do the job better, but it only records on 48 kHz and generally I use to record in 96 kHz.
I have tried the Babyface of a friend of mine, and not problem with the Hi-Z input level too.

I think I have to resell the UR22 and buy another portable unit.
Anyway, if there’s not UR22 update that will solve the hum problem when the phantom power is activated, this will be another reason not to keep this unit.

I was a not a Yamaha/Steinberg hardware user until I tried the UR824 that really seduce me… I have bought the UR22 without trying it, just because I was satisfied with the 824, and finally I was wrong with the UR22.

I’ve been thinking of getting a Radial or Little Labs Direct Box
to use with my Jackson guitar and the Steinberg interfaces.
I’ve heard they alter the tone, but maybe they will cure the
digital distortion. I use the Seymour Duncan HotRail neck PUP for
a clean full sound on the Jackson. My only other option (without buying
another interface) is to mic the amp. I know I’m not satisfied
with the Steinberg units with that guitar yet. I’m thinking the AXE
FX 2 might be another possibility. I don’t know if Steinberg/Yamaha
can have an update to fix this. We’ll see what happens when they try
to fix the UR22 problem this month. Maybe you can keep the unit to
see if they can fix it with an update.


Yes I could wait, but for the moment Steinberg does not consider that there any input gain problem with the UR22 when some guitars are plugged with with Hi-Z enabled. My guitar is a gibson LP Junior with a P90 mic that is not a mic supposed to have a high output, so I can imagine with guitars like Jackson with active mic.
There’s no problem my a bass or acoustic guitar.

This is what is written in the UR22 description : “the Hi-Z switch on input 2 allows for direct recording of electric guitar or bass without the need to use an additional DI box.”
In a certain way, this is not really true. :wink:

If you say me that there the same issue with the 824 Hi-Z gain (I haven’t tried with mine yet), I hope that Steinberg will consider this issue and find a way to fix it.

You and I are proof that there is a problem with Steinberg interfaces
and some guitars, but we aren’t the only ones who find a problem. I am
satisfied with my live amp sound using an EMU-1820m going to an amp.
Absolutely clean sound that way. You and I aren’t using junk guitars either.

The Jackson has passive pickups. I’m convinced that a Radial DI will be better
than using Yamaha Hi-Z. In fact, I haven’t used Hi-Z for a couple of weeks. It
doesn’t work with my equipment. I have tried various things. I’ve turned the
gain all of the way down/off and turned my guitar volume up a bit, but that is
not the tone I’m looking for. Might be OK for some.

I’m going to order a Radial DI next month. Some people love them. Even a different
capacitor in the guitar may help, but I’m getting more interested in the stereo and
re-amp possibilities with that DI. Also, maybe there is a difference between the AD
and DA converters on the Steinberg units?

Now we have to wait for a sign from Steinberg which indicate that they consider that it may be a “gain problem with Hi-Z” for some user.

I have heard very good things about Radial j48, but it’s quite expansive, and this is not my priority for the moment.

I tested earlier on input #2 on the front. I engaged Hi-Z and
turned the gain knob completely off (counter-clockwise) and
turned the guitar pick-up about half way open and got distortion
at times. Then I turned Hi-Z off and turned the gain knob to
the last dot (about 4 o’clock). I then turned the guitar volume
almost off completely. Guitar volume was barely turned on. I
still got distortion at times. There was never any clipping, but
definite digital distortion.

I agree with what you said about the guitar sounding muffled. I
used an exciter plug-in to compensate for that, but it sounded
horrible anyway.

The Radial JDI (passive - single channel) is 200 USD and the stereo
unit (JDV) is active with two channels and 400 USD. I’m still researching these.

I guess some guitars will require a DI box. We’ll see how Steinberg
proceeds. There have been many, many complaints about these units.
I’m going to restrict my UR824 to mics and DI boxes.

Just posting up that my UR22 does exactly the same thing; overloads the signal on HiZ, even with the gain all the way down. This happens on pretty much every guitar, ranging from single coil Strat, mid gain humbuckers, and higher gain (but still passive) humbuckers. Even a piezo will overload it.

Come on Steinberg. This is false advertising when so many guitars can so easily overload the device with the gain all the way down. I’d love to know which guitars you guys tested this with, because like I said, even with singles it does it.

Contrast that with my old Presonus 44VSL, my Line 6 UX2, and my Tascam US122L, and NONE of those had any issues. Really quite disappointed with this unit.

It seems that Steinberg don’t wan’t to answer. :neutral_face:

I just want them to let us know if a future firmware update can solve this problem.

As you, I don’t use UR22 to plug guitars…

Also, while a DI might work, buying a $200 DI so a $150 interface works like they said it would is dumb. Plenty of other affordable interfaces work just fine.

I never did buy a DI box. I’ve been using the EMU 1820m to record guitars.
I’m satisfied doing that, but if I want to use Steinberg interfaces with
my guitars, I’m convinced I’ll need to invest in a DI box, but I’m not
confident that is a cure, so I’m using what I know works instead. If I was
using distorted guitar, I might use a Steinberg box. I’d try it anyway.

With this set-up, I use two computers. The UR824 for mics through a Vista x64 box. Then
output the mic on the rear of the UR824 into the EMU unit which then records into XP x64.
(EMU gain at ZERO - UR824 output @ 50%) The guitar goes straight into the EMU 1820m. So
the mic and guitar gets recorded into XP x64, all routed through the Emu unit ultimately.
It’s more complicated than it needs to be, but it works.

I don’t use inputs 1 & 2 on the UR824 at all. That is probably why I wouldn’t be at all satisfied
only using a UR22 for a personal “gig-box”. Only way in, is with the two front inputs which i avoid
altogether on the UR824.


Hi all,

I experiment digital distortion as well with my Stratocaster American Standard plugged in HI-Z of my UR-824.

I use either Radial Passive JDI instead or go through my Summit preamp 2BA-221 HI-Z input through UR-824 line input with PAD switch engaged and knob at about 7:00 O’ clock. This gives me the best sound so far.

I am a bit disappointed about this since I like the UR a lot.

I think Steinberg should address this issue.

JF Simard
Windows 7 64 bit
Cubase 7.5.20

Solution here, depending of your country :
You can perhaps send a PM to Ed Doll, if you are not sure

My UR22 input problem has been fixed. Works fine now.

Thank you loorenz for the link.

May I ask how yours was fixed? Did you have to return your device?

JF Simard

In my Country (France) I have to send back the item to Steinberg in Germany.
Send a a PM to Ed Doll, he will let know haw to proceed in your country :wink:

Just did, thx.

Loorenz, you said that your unit is fixed now. Did they replace it with a new one or provided with a fix?

Support in my country said that the preamps are very sensitive and that I should engage the PAD switch when using the HI-Z.

They have change the unit…

You can’t engage the pad, because there’s no pad on UR22 ! :confused:
UR824 have a pad for example.

With the older UR22 I have tried to plug guitars with direct boxes and always he same issue with the gain.
Even with a simple Audix D4 on a floortom, at the lower gain, the signal was clipping.

I hope you will find a solution.

There’s indeed a PAD on UR-824 but I find it a bit contradictory to have to engage a PAD switch with HI-Z ON. Also, even with it I still hear some light distortion even when NOT clipping.

Anyway, we’ll see. I can still work with the DI box or my Summit Preamp.

Thank you Loorenz!