Our winner in the interface category is a piece of tech that was universally acclaimed by everyone. It’s the Focusrite Clarett 8 Pre…
Best Interface – Focusrite Clarett 8 Pre
The interface category was very crowded, as you might expect, with some fine entrants from iConnectivity, Cymatic, Audient and many more.
The 8Pre is one of many audio interfaces from Focusrite, but one touted as ‘better, faster and easier’ thanks to new control software and its super-fast Thunderbolt credentials. And it certainly seems to live up to the hype… The 8Pre has 18 audio inputs and 20 outs with eight analogue ins and 10 outs, plus eight ADAT I/Os and stereo S/PDIF I/O.
It’s a flexible recording beast for multiple mic set-ups, with the eight mic pres able to take up all sorts of duties: from drum kit to complete band recording. It also has an ‘Air’ feature on the mic pres that adds a clarity and power to vocals, emulating Focusrite’s own ISA channels strip. But it’s the Thunderbolt power that is the main draw.
In our tests, we had near-zero latency – certainly nothing that was worth worrying about in basic recording and playback, and the unit has a pristine sound. With a host of outputs combined with the Control software, you can route pretty much any in with any out, so set monitor mixes for different players or have a couple of separate headphone mixes – easily enough connectivity and routing flexibility for lots of scenarios, and it’s also dead easy to use.
Reviewer Andy Jones said: “Overall, Clarett does everything it sets out to do and does it very well. It’s certainly ‘better’, with some great mic pres offering superb recording and the routing software offering the ultimate in recording flexibility. ‘Easier’, too, with that Control software taking the strain out of having to use another layer of software with your DAW.
And finally, ‘faster’? The 8Pre performed admirably well, with zero latency and it will give multi-recordists their speed. So a very solid interface for a whole host of applications – very highly recommended indeed.”
Focusrite’s Neil Johnston accepts the award from our editor Andy Jones
Be sure to read the complete list of winners in the current issue of MusicTech Magazine and check back tomorrow for another winner…