8 Best Budget Audio Interfaces Under 200 Dollars

Are you a computer-based musician who loves listening to and recording music? Are you looking for a new audio interface for your home or recording studio?

If you’re a music fan who also loves technology, then this article is for you.

A top of the range audio interface will allow you to record vocals and instruments using your computer.

You can then convert them from analog format to a digital format. This type of technology will then turn your digital files back to analog so that they can be played on a loudspeaker.

The good news is that there are many budget audio interfaces on the market today, which are fantastic quality and will fall within your budget. You may find that there’s a bewildering choice of products available, and their prices vary considerably.

Before deciding on which audio interface to buy, it’s essential to consider what type of sounds or music you want to record.

This is a critical question as it determines the number of simultaneous inputs you’ll need. You’ll also need to consider what type of inputs you want to use.

Inputs will allow you to connect other equipment such as microphones, midi keyboards, studio monitors, studio headphones, or piano keyboards.

Let’s have a look at the eight best budget audio interfaces on the market. We understand that you want to save your hard-earned dollars, so here’s a list of audio interfaces for less than $200.

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8 Best Budget Audio Interfaces Under 200 Dollar

Here are some facts that every product has listed below.

  • They are all usb audio interfaces.
  • They all have a headphone output.
  • They all have microphone and instrument inputs.
  • They all have stereo outputs.
  • They are all bus powered

Focusrite Scarlett Solo (3rd Gen)

[amazon box=”B07QR6Z1JB”]

Focusrite has always aimed to create the best quality products and are on top of their game when it comes to designing audio interfaces. The company uses state of the art components which help their audio interfaces stand out from the competition.

The Focusrite Scarlett Solo (3rd Gen) has a microphone input channel, which features Scarletts best performing mic preamps to date.

This generation has a switchable air mode that has been designed to improve sound quality. Your recordings will have a bright, refreshing sound if you use this audio interface

This audio interface is very compact, compared with others on the market, which makes it more portable. What’s impressive is that something this small can produce studio-quality audio.

The Scarlett series has, for a long time, been a favorite audio interface for musicians, whether they are beginners or professional musicians.

The 3rd generation price tag makes this high-quality audio interface affordable, even if you’re on a budget.

There have also been some new design features added to the 3rd gen model, such as revamped preamps, and upgraded audio fidelity. There’s also a new interactive onboarding and a low-latency USB drive.

One of the best features of the new Scarlett interface is the Air Mode. When you use the Air technology, the classic Air effect is reproduced by the preamps. Air mode is fantastic if you plan to record instruments such as acoustic guitars or soft vocals performances.

Pros
  • East to setup and use.
  • Improved USB-C connectivity speed.
  • Comes with instrument input for guitar and bass.
  • Ableton Live Lite And 3 months splice subscription included.
Cons
  • None.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon


Video: “Focusrite Scarlett Solo 3rd Gen – REVIEW”



Behringer U-Phoria UM2

[amazon box=”B00EK1OTZC”]

The Behringer U-Phoria UM2 allows you to compose and record music that you can then mix with other audio files such as vocals or instrumentals. You’ll then be able to share your music with the world via the internet easily.

This interface is straightforward to use; it has a single-screen, elegant design and combines professional functions that will improve the quality of your recordings.

The Behringer U-Phoria UM2 includes dynamic automation and unlimited track count. It also supports VST and AU plugins.

When you purchase this audio interface, Behringer will also give you a full, downloadable version of Tracktion, which will help you edit and share your audio files.

The Behringer U-Phoria UM2 allows you to plug in your microphone or instrument to the combination XLR/TRS input or the additional 1/4” input. You’ll be able to create a clean recording that will be saved directly onto your computer.

Another great benefit of the UM2 is that it’s compatible with all the leading digital audio workstations. It will seamlessly integrate with Avid Pro Tools, Steinberg Cubase, Ableton Live, to name a few.

Pros
  • Ultra-low latency USB.
  • Control for gain and output level.
  • +48V switchable power.
Cons
  • No pro tools included.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon


Video: “Behringer UM2 Quick Start Guide”



PreSonus AudioBox 96

[amazon box=”B071W6YVDR”]

The PreSonus AudioBox 96 is an excellent audio interface for professional musicians. It has a sample rate that ranges up to 24-bit/96kHz and produces fantastic audio quality.

You’ll be able to record high-quality audio performances with this interface as it allows you to capture every nuance using your source inputs.

The PreSonus AudioBox 96 has a built-in +48V Phantom Power, which allows you to create studio-quality recordings using a condenser microphone.

This audio interface has a sleek design that features two front-panel inputs. You’ll be able to record vocals as well as instrument recordings in immense detail.

The PreSonus AudioBox 96, has been designed to make it portable, easy to use. It’s also bus-powered, which means that there’s no need to have a power supply on all occasions.

The microphone preamps are top of the range, and this, combined with its Phantom Power, allows users to capture good quality audio performances. Vocal recordings can be captured in fantastic detail, both high and low notes will be well reproduced.

One of the benefits of buying the PreSonus Audiobox 96 rather then any other type of audio interface is that it’s very portable. This makes it great if you’re a musician who travels a lot and needs to record your music from different locations.

Not only that is this one of the of best budget audio interfaces that have a midi I/O, which is huge plus for many musicians.

Pros
  • Compatible with all recording software for Mac and Windows.
  • 24-bit resolution: 44.1, 88.2, 96 kHz sampling rates.
  • Includes Studio One Artist DAW software.
  • Comes with Midi I/O
Cons
  • Poor design (knobs too close to each other + not aesthetically pleasing compared to other interfaces.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon


Video: “PreSonus AudioBox USB 2×2 Review / Test / Explained”



M-Audio Air 192 | 8

[amazon box=”B07YZLN475″]

There has been a lot of hype over the M-Audio Air 192 | 8 audio interface, and producers and musicians have been talking about it on social media.

It produces excellent quality recordings and has a stylish design. Its retro module format is very stylish and remarkably solid.

The buttons, knobs, and switches feel nice to the touch, making this interface a pleasure to use. There are also high-quality connectors.

M-Audio’s new audio interface comes with midi I/O, it has 4 input channels, 2 for instrument and 2 combos XLR/TRS channels, 2 outputs, and 1 headphone sockets at 24-bit, 192 kHz resolution.

The M-Audio Air 192 | 8 is an affordable entry-level audio interface. It’s easy to set up and works straight out of the box.

Although it’s very compact, it is also dense and hardwearing, making it perfect if you work from several locations and need to take your equipment with you!

Pros
  • Great design
  • 24-bit/192 kHz resolution for professional recording.
  • Comes with Midi I/O.
  • Multiple pro softwares included.
Cons
  • Large size

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon


Video: “M-Audio Air 192|8 – New Recording Interface! Overview & Set up”



Behringer U-Phoria UMC22

[amazon box=”B00FFIGZF6″]

Behringer is renowned for creating amazing consoles, audio interfaces, and other technology. They work with MIDAS, who develop fantastic quality preamps, and these two factors make the U-Poria UMC22 stand out from the competition.

If you take your music seriously and are planning a career in the music industry, then the U-Phoria UMC22 is a great choice of audio interface for you.

The UMC22 has 48 kHz resolution converters and has excellent recording quality, which will give you the professional results you’re after.

U-Phoria UMC22 has many great features; there are 2×2 audio inputs, which can be used for microphones and recording instruments.

This audio interface can be used in conjunction with many of the industries specific recording software. It’s compatible with Avid Pro Tools and Steinberg Cubase.

Another benefit of this audio interface is that it’s very hardwearing, as it has an impact-resistant metal casing, which is great if you’re looking for a product that you can travel with. It’s also made with high-quality material and has been built to last.

Pros
  • Compatible with popular recording software
  • Mic preamp with +48 V phantom power.
  • Ultra-low latency to your computer.
Cons
  • Audiophile 48 kHz resolution.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon


Video: “Behringer U-Phoria UMC22 Review / Test”



Native Komplete Kontrol Audio 2

[amazon box=”B07N6RXLWY”]

Native Instruments have created the Komplete Audio 2, which is a great quality, two-channel audio interfaces.

This product offers the user an easy to use interface with flexible options. There are two XLR/jack combination inputs, as well as two outputs. This will allow you to get the most out of your audio interface with just two channels.

This audio interface is great for performers of all types, including singers and songwriters, instrumental performers, and producers, as well as those who are into podcasting.

This product will allow you to record high-quality music, performances, or podcast interviews. Just connect your microphone or guitar to get started.

You’ll be able to record vocals, audio or music directly onto your DAW. The resulting audio can then be edited with professional software, which is included with this interface.

This is a great package for beginners and professionals alike as it allows you to start recording, producing, and editing music and audio immediately!

Pros
  • Great design and layout (easy accessible knobs)
  • Includes an essential bundle of softwares to get started.
  • Premium quality at 24-bit and 192 kHz.
Cons
  • None.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon


Video: “Native Instruments Komplete Audio 2 – Review and Demonstration”



Steinberg UR12

[amazon box=”B00QY4RLRQ”]

The Steinberg UR12 has been explicitly created for singers, musicians, and songwriters who travel with their work.

This audio interface has an XLR microphone input that has the option of using phantom power. There’s also a 1/4″ jack for plugging in your guitar or another instrument.

Each of the inputs has a knob for gain control, and the XLR input is connected to a Yamaha D-PRE preamp.

The Steinberg UR12 interface has outputs for headphones and a volume knob. As you’d expect from a modern audio interface, there’s also a direct monitoring switch that connects the inputs with the outputs.

This audio interface sounds fantastic, runs without a hitch, and is very dense. Another benefit of buying this product is that you’ll get a free download of Cubase AI 7.

Pros
  • Cross-platform compatibility with Windows, OS X and Ipad.
  • 24-bit and 192 kHz USB 2.0 Audio interface.
  • Mic preamp supporting +48 V phantom power.
Cons
  • Slightly over-priced .

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon


Video: “Steinberg UR12 USB Audio Interface (Review and Microphone Comparison)”



Tascam US 1×2

[amazon box=”B074Q5W46C”]

If you’re into podcasting or online streaming, then this may be the perfect audio interface for you.

The Tascam US is a high-speed USB 2.0 audio interface which has been upgraded from the previous version with the addition of a high-quality instrument input. It also has internal HDDA preamps.

The Tascam US is popular with online broadcasts. You’ll have everything you need to record good quality podcasts. This interface is very versatile, allows you to have flexibility over how you record and edit audio files and is also very compact.

This audio interface comes with onboard DSP effects such as a compressor, reverb, and equalizer.

This will allow you to add special effects to your podcast as you go. There are also XLR/TRS balanced inputs that will enable you to connect microphones or other audio devices.

Pros
  • Record up to 96 kHz and 24-bit.
  • Connects with Ipad and other IOS devices.
  • Compatible with popular DAW softwares.
Cons
  • Only includes Cubase LE and Cubasis as sofwares.

Check Price and Reviews on Amazon


Video: “Tascam US-2×2 USB Audio Interface – Connect high quality microphones via USB”



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The Takeaway

Most musicians and vocal performers want to create high-quality audio recordings of there work.

Investing in a good quality audio interface may be the first step in creating great recordings that will help you launch your music career.

Having an audio file will allow you to distribute your work on the internet, which will help you to reach a wider audience.

Investing in one of the above audio interfaces may turn out to be one of the best decisions you’ve ever made. This is true whether you’re a professional musician or producer or are a beginner who’s just getting started.

Buying one of the best budget audio interfaces that are listed above is great if you’re just getting started.

These interfaces are perfect for beginners, as they include everything you need to record, edit, and distribute music and audio files. In many cases, the packages also include free downloadable software, so you’ll have everything you need.

Do you want to improve the quality of your music or podcasts? If so, you may like to consider buying one of the eight best budget audio interfaces on the market.

Juan Stansbury
Juan Stansbury

I'm Juan Stansbury, author and owner of Homerecordio – your ultimate destination for everything about homerecording. With hands-on experience, courses, workshops, and industry research, I offer tips on selecting the best equipment, and mixing and mastering your recordings to achieve professional-quality results at home. Join me on this journey to explore the world of homerecording and music production.

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