RME Babyface Pro 24 Channel Audio Interface for iPad / Mac / PC - 4 Analog Inputs (Discontinued)

96
GEARANK

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

Street Price: 

$899
RME Babyface Pro

This unit comes with many interesting features that easily set it apart from the competition, most notable of which is its extended range of 76dB, which increments in 1dB steps. This extra gain allows for improved clarity and compatibility with low level microphones.

Another noteworthy feature is the redesigned XLR socket, which saves space and better secures connection.

Of course the ADAT toslink connection, which allows the addition of 8 input/ouput channels via an ADAT audio interface, is a key feature those who might want to expand beyond the 4 input channels initially on offer.

Other features include 2 mic preamps, hi-Z (instrument) and lo-Z (line) inputs and MIDI input/output.

All of these features are packed inside a compact yet solid aluminum housing that's equally at home in portable and home studio applications.

Specifications:

  • A/D Resolution: 24-bit/192kHz
  • Connectors: USB (Requires Lightning to USB Adapter)
  • Simultaneous Channels: 4 (Up to 12 via ADAT)
  • Inputs: 2 x XLR, 2 x 1/4", 1 x ADAT toslink
  • Outputs: 2 x XLR, 1 x 1/4" Headphones, 1 x ADAT toslink
  • MIDI: In/Out via Breakout Cable
  • Power: DC Power Supply or USB Bus Powered
  • Bundled Software: TotalMix FX
  • Phantom Power: Yes

Pros

Market response to the RME Babyface Pro was overwhelmingly positive, which is impressive considering its premium price tag. It got most of its commendations from users who are impressed with its excellent headroom and clarity. And while many bought the RME for portable use with their iPads, it has been reported to be equally viable in home studios, especially with it premium look and space saving size.

Cons

The price tag is on the higher end for the average home studio enthusiast and mobile producer, but those who have bought the Babyface Pro found the premium cost justifiable. Having to use proprietary breakout cables were frowned upon by a few users, but they do understand that this is a necessary compromise to make the unit smaller and lighter.

Overall

If you're going for a premium audio interface that's portable, the RME Babyface Pro is a great pick that's not only easy to bring to your next recording session, jam, or gig, but also looks at home next to your minimalist home recording setup.

Unfortunately this is no longer available new in stores - for alternatives look at our recommended lists in our guides to The Best iPad Audio Interfaces and The Best USB Audio Interfaces.

From "The Best USB Audio Interfaces" guide:

The RME Babyface Pro is more than just another pretty looking interface. Despite its minimal exterior, It features 4 inputs with 2 XLR preamps, expandability and MIDI I/O.

It's smaller than it looks and how it's able to pack all these features neatly inside an all aluminum enclosure is a marvel of engineering.

Features:

  • A/D Resolution: 24-bit/192kHz
  • Simultaneous I/O: 12 x 12
  • Inputs: 2 x XLR, 2 x 1/4", 1 x ADAT toslink
  • Outputs: 2 x XLR, 1 x 1/4" (Headphones), 1 x ADAT toslink
  • Computer Connectivity: USB 2.0
  • MIDI: In/Out via breakout cable
  • Phantom Power: +48V
  • Bundled Software: TotalMix FX
  • USB Class Compliant Mode

Pros

The Babyface Pro gets high marks on transparency and signal purity. It doesn't add much in the way of coloring but handles input in a way that doesn't interfere with your perception of the sound. Many report very little coloring but a few feel it is noticeable. The inclusion of MIDI is a great advantage over similarly priced and spec'ed interfaces.

Cons

While listed as capable of 12 in, 12 out, many users were disappointed that only 2 xlr preamps are present. To use the full capacity of the Babyface Pro, you will need an external preamp via ADAT. The included software was also unintuitive for many users.

Overall

Need a desktop audio interface that is small and durable enough to be transportable while being expandable? Get the Babyface Pro if you alternate between mobile and home setups with additional inputs and need MIDI I/O. The software has a learning curve to get over but after that you're golden.

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