With each passing month mobile music-making takes another giant leap forward and with the release of Focusrite’s iTrack One Pre, it’s only getting better…
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Focusrite’s iTrack range covers, as you might expect, some varying ways of uniting your iOS audio apps with the outside world. The first one that we looked at was the iTrack Dock, a plain and simple docking station that houses your iPad for interfacing with your desktop setup.
Since then, we’ve seen the iTrack Pocket, which is an even smaller phone solution, and the iTrack Solo bundle that adds more conventional interfacing and a microphone.
The iTrack One Pre is a different take again on iOS recording but, on the face of it, seems like a very elegant solution and one simply aimed at anyone wanting to record vocals or guitars into their iPhone or iPad.
The unit is compatible with iPhones SE, 5 and 6; both iPad Pros; iPad Air; all iPad Minis; iPad (4th gen); and iPod touch (5th and 6th gen). iPhone 7 users can record, but will not be able to monitor via a headphone jack, as Apple controversially got rid of it.
As for the unit itself, it’s surprisingly small and rugged. At just 55mm square, it can go anywhere with you, although the square shape doesn’t make it that pocketable. There’s a joint mic/line input and the unit draws enough power from your iOS device to make using condenser mics possible without external power.
Plug it into your iOS device (we tested it with an iPad and Cubasis) via the supplied cable, which we feel could do with being twice the length, and it lights up with a compatible app. The main dial then illuminates as soon as a signal is detected. It glows red if there’s too much signal and changes back to green as you dial the input level down.
It’s an incredibly simple plug ’n’ play operation and we were soon adding audio to old Cubasis tracks, including some very dodgy vocals (that being our vocal quality – not the fault of the interface).
Sure, cables could be longer and the unit less square, but the fact that you can use pro mics without external power, combined with a quality Focusrite preamp, makes the iTrack One Pre one of the best mobile devices we’ve seen.
Focusrite iTrack One Pre key features
- iOS interface for vocals and guitar
- Draws power from iOS device
- Freq response: 20Hz to 20kHz
- System requirements: iOS9, iOS10
- Weight (g): 160
- Dimensions (mm): 55 x 55 x 55
- Comes with Micro USB to Lightning and USB A cable and pouch