Presonus AudioBox 22VSL 24-Bit/96 kHz 2x2 USB 2.0 Audio Interface (Discontinued)

87
GEARANK

87 out of 100. Incorporating 250+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: 

$200
Presonus AudioBox 22VSL
Presonus AudioBox 22VSL

The Presonus Audiobox 22VSL is a straightforward 2-channel interface that thrived in the entry-level market.

At its core is its distinguishing feature, two XMAX preamps that run on 30V power rails, higher than the usual 10V to 18V that other preamps use. This increased voltage results in more headroom and translates into a richer overall sound, that many users approve of.

This preamp is paired with a 24-bit/96kHz converter with essential controls for gain, main level and headphones level. It does all this while running on USB 2.0 power, making it viable for both indoor and outdoor recordings.

Specifications:

  • A/D Resolution: 24-bit/96kHz
  • Preamp: 2 x Presonus Class A XMAX Mic Preamps
  • Channels: 2
  • Inputs: 2 x XLR-1/4" Combo (Mic/Instrument)
  • Outputs: 2 x 1/4", 1 x 1/4" (Headphones)
  • MIDI: In/Out
  • Power:USB Bus Powered
  • Phantom Power: 48V
  • Bundled Software: Studio One Artist DAW

Pros
The Presonus AudioBox 22VSL got high marks for its ease of use and sound quality. Although there were driver issues in the past, the latest operating systems can now run this audio interface without much issue, so much so that most users commend it for being a true plug and play device. It continues to make positive impressions on bassists, guitarists, vocalists and other musicians, and it is also used for other voice recording.

Cons
Here is the kicker though, this audio interface does not accept line level inputs, which means that you can't directly plug-in keyboards, synthesizers and active pickup instruments. Presonus suggest using a Direct Box (DI) which is ironic since it's usually instrument level sources (i.e. guitar, bass) that need DI's. This is somewhat limiting for an audio interface, but it still is a very viable mic/instrument level audio interface, which for many is really all that they need. Also note that Presonus has discontinued the VSL (Virtual StudioLive) control software for all AudioBox units. Thankfully, DAW software and even operating systems now provide the same level of control, so it is not a big deal.

Overall
With its impressive sound and build quality, the PreSonus AudioBox 22VSL is highly recommended, especially if you use their Studio One DAW.

Unfortunately, it's no longer widely available, so if you want one but can't find one to buy then check out our current recommendations in the guide: The Best Cheap Audio Interfaces Under $200.