MOTU M4 4-Channel USB-C Audio Interface - 4 Analog Inputs

93
GEARANK

93 out of 100. Incorporating 800+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$270
MOTU M4 4-Channel USB-C Audio Interface

Gearank High Notes

Gearank Recommended

The M4 first appeared on our recommended list for USB Audio Interfaces with 4 Analog Inputs in October 2020 where it remained until March 2022 when it was out-ranked by other interfaces.

It also appeared on our list for iPad Audio Interfaces in September 2021 where it remained until August 2022 when we put a $200 price limit on that category making the MOTU M4 ineligible.

Overview

High-end audio equipment manufacturer MOTU (short for Mark of the Unicorn) has produced the surprisingly affordable (at least for them) MOTU M4.

It features the ESS Sabre32 Ultra DAC (Digital-to-Analog Converter) that provides 120dB of dynamic range. ESS Converters are also used on the headphone out for dynamics that rival even audiophile-level DACs.

With a noise level of -129 dBu, The MOTU M4 was designed to be pristine and pure.

It comes bundled with the following software: MOTU Performer Lite, Ableton Live 10 Lite and bundled samples and loops.

The level meters on the front have good visibility and accuracy and making it easier to set the right amount of input gain faster.

Note that if you use this with an iPad that you will need an external USB powered hub because the iPad does not provide enough current.

The MOTU M4 is an audio interface with top-tier tech and refinements packaged in a more affordable and compact format.

Get it if you value pristine audio and don't need much in terms of inputs. For solo artists, voice recordings, and other small projects, the MOTU M4 shines above many similarly priced offerings.

Specifications

  • A/D Resolution: Up to 24-bit/192kHz
  • Simultaneous I/O: 4 x 4
  • Inputs: 2 x XLR-1/4" TRS (mic/line/Hi-Z), 2 x 1/4" (line)
  • Outputs: 2 x 1/4" TRS (DC coupled, monitor), 2 x 1/4" TRS (DC coupled, line), 1 x Dual RCA Stereo (monitor), 1 x Dual RCA Stereo (line), 1 x 1/4" (Headphones)
  • Computer Connectivity: USB 2.0
  • MIDI: In/Out/USB
  • Phantom Power: +48V
  • Low latency monitoring
  • USB Class Compliant

Rating Source Highlights

Website Source *Rating Value
Sound On Sound Robin Vincent 96/100
Audio Science Review amirm 90/100
*Displayed values are prior to the Gearank Algorithm's adjustments it makes when evaluating the source.

About the Author

Raphael PulgarRaphael Pulgar

I've been an audio engineer for 20 years specializing in rock and metal recordings, and also I play guitar and produce original music for my band and other content creators.