There are limited options available if you’re looking for an affordable audio interface with MIDI connection. So, we compiled a list of the top 5 options under $200.
- Universal Audio Volt 2
- Steinberg UR22C
- PreSonus Revelator io24
- Motu M2
- PreSonus Studio 24c
When Do I Need an Audio Interface with MIDI Connection?
An audio interface with MIDI connection allows you to connect your MIDI controller to your computer.
While you can connect most MIDI controllers via USB, you may still need to use 5-Pin DIN MIDI cables for some vintage models.
If so, we recommend using an audio interface with a MIDI input and output.
What is MIDI?
MIDI is an essential protocol for digital music production.
It allows different devices to communicate with each other by exchanging MIDI signals.
For example, you can use a MIDI controller to play a virtual instrument on your computer. Or to control the parameters of a synth plugin.
Benefits of Using an Audio Interface with MIDI Connection
The obvious benefit of using an audio interface with MIDI instead of a dedicated MIDI interface is convenience.
You can save money and desk space by having one device that does the job of two.
However, a MIDI interface may be the better option if you need to connect multiple MIDI devices.
5 Best Audio Interfaces with MIDI I/O
In this article, we’ll recommend five of the best audio interfaces with MIDI I/O under $200.
We’ll also give you a few things to keep in mind when considering whether these interfaces are right for you.
Universal Audio Volt 2
Universal Audio’s Volt 2 interface stands out compared to similar units due to its Vintage mode feature.
Vintage mode is a unique mic preamp feature that emulates the sound of UA’s classic 610 tube preamp. When enabled, this feature gives your audio a warmer, more vintage sound.
The Volt 2 provides two mic/line/instrument inputs and two 1/4″ outputs for studio monitors.
It also offers a MIDI In and Out, direct monitoring, +48V phantom power, LED indicators, a copy of Ableton Live Lite, and a host of plugins and VSTs.
Related Post: Universal Audio Volt 2 Complete Review
Steinberg’s UR22C is one of the most affordable interfaces with built-in DSP effects.
Its dspMixFx gives you access to latency-free monitoring, the Spot Morphing Channel Strip, guitar amps, and reverb effects.
This unit also comes with Cubase AI, Steinberg’s entry-level recording and production software.
With two mic/line/instrument inputs, two 1/4″ outputs, a MIDI In and Out, and a USB-C connection, the UR22C is an excellent option for anyone looking for a simple, affordable interface with a few advanced features.
PreSonus Revelator io24
PreSonus’ Revelator io24 is one of our top picks for streaming and podcasting.
It features an onboard loopback mixer allowing you to add real-time effects with near-zero latency.
This unit also offers two combo inputs and two 1/4″ outputs with 24-bit/96kHz converters, MIDI connection, and an LED level meter for each channel.
You’ll also get a copy of Studio One Artist, an entry-level DAW, and the Studio Magic software bundle.
Motu’s M2 is an affordable, professional-grade interface.
It offers excellent sound quality in a compact unit, making it one of our go-to options for recording and mixing on the go.
This unit has two mic/line/instrument inputs and two 1/4″ outputs with 32-bit/192kHz converters, low-noise preamps, and a high dynamic range compared to other entry-level interfaces.
Another feature that makes this unit stand out is its independent direct monitoring and phantom controls for each input.
Having separate controls allows you to connect different mics and instruments at once and use them independently.
The M2 also comes with MIDI connection, LED level meters for each channel, and RCA outputs.
Related Post: Motu M2 Complete Review
PreSonus Studio 24c
PreSonus’ Studio 24c is a popular entry-level interface due to its simplistic design and high-quality mic preamps.
It offers two combo mic/line/instrument inputs, zero-latency monitoring, and 24-bit/192kHz resolution.
The 24c’s low-noise XMAX-L mic preamps offer up to +50dB of gain, making it ideal for dynamic and condenser microphones.
In addition, the interface includes phantom power for condenser microphones, MIDI I/O, and LED level meters for each channel.
PreSonus’ Studio 24c is a great option for those looking for an easy-to-use interface with excellent sound quality.
Related Post: PreSonus Studio 24c Review