January 13, 2017 at 11:47AM


What is the best audio interface & mic combo for home studio recording (voice & live percussion)?

Hi everyone,
I need to know what is the best mic / audio interface setup for recording voice and instruments like electric drums, live percussion, guitar in the range of $350-$400 for both (I'm thinking the mic would cost less). The -10db or so would be nice I guess for recording percussion but I don't know too much about it since I haven't tested it.

I want to do recordings for songs mostly with a midi keyboard and Cubase. I have a semi treated room. My research tells me a good large diaphragm condenser mic would be best. Hopefully that's enough info for anyone to kindly help me decide.

I've been eyeing the following audio interfaces (4 channel is better of course but quality is #1)
Steinberg UR22MKII
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 (2nd Gen)

and for mics (not sure if I need USB or XLR or if it matters)
Audio Technica AT2020 USB+
Samson C01u Pro
Samson C03U
Audio-Technica AT2035
Rode NT1A

Any help is much appreciated. I've seen many video reviews but still confused.

On my future purchase list if I keep doing this is the Shure SM7B but that's out of my budget at this moment.

1 Comment

For that price range, you won't get much of anything new. I suggest getting the best used XLR mic you possibly can afford and it will serve you for the rest of your life. Then get any ole' interface with what's left. You can replace that later.

Bear in mind that passive mics are affected more by preamp (usually built into the interface) quality, so you'd want to upgrade to a really good interface before an SM7b.
Percussion and electric guitar usually prefer small diaphragm dynamic mics while acoustic/classical guitar generally like small diaphragm condensers, so you'd want more mics down the line.

If it was me, I'd get a used sE2200a (under $200) a used Scarlett 2i2 or similar (under $100). Don't forget money for a mic stand and two decent mic cables (or make them yourself). You want two so you can have a spare. Get a hoop pop filter if there's any money left.
Otherwise, you can get a used UH-7000 for $300 and I'll sell you my PL20 for $100 that works well but rattles when you handle it. While the PL20 is a great mic ($450 originally), I still suggest getting a better mic than interface up front because you'd eventually want to replace the capsule ($200) on ANY PL20.

January 16, 2017 at 6:28AM, Edited January 16, 7:20AM


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