Learning how to record guitar can be difficult and confusing. But M-Audio has you covered with the new M-Track Solo and Duo interfaces. These are all in one solutions to get your best ideas recorded!
The M-Track Solo and Duo: The Easiest Way to Record!
Look, recording your guitar can be super complicated for those that are uninitiated. There are tons of things you have to know, whether its just the basics, or it is plug-ins and other gear. It all gets really confusing.
Finding the right interface for your needs gets complicated pretty quick. Not everyone is a natural recording engineer. There are tons of ways to record guitar, but it can easily become a deep rabbit hole of confusion. M-Audio is changing that with these new interfaces.
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Part of the fun of playing guitar is coming up with your own ideas and riffs. Of course you want to record them! Getting there for the people who are not tech-savvy can be a huge struggle.
The M-Track Solo and Duo models set out to make things much easier for you as a guitarist first, and a computer person second. These units are perfect for beginners. The feature set for the price, is crazy!
M-Track Solo and Duo: Features and Design
Both models have a similar feature set, the only real difference between the two is the amount of available inputs. Really, to record your guitar, you only need one input. So the M-Track Solo might be up your alley. If you want to record two tracks at once, the M-Track Duo is where it’s at.
Both models have:
- M-Audio Crystal Power Amp
- +48V Phantom Power
- Mains Audio Output
- Direct Headphone Output
- Independent Gain Knobs
- Portable Size
- 24-bit/48 kHz Audio Resolution
- USB Powered
- Zero- Latency
- A Comprehensive Software package
Let’s talk about the M-Audio Crystal Power Amp first. The Crystal preamp works with any instrument, but really shines when it comes to guitars and microphones. There is virtually zero noise through the line, straight to your computer. It is basically built-in noise reduction.
This means you can use your favorite guitar processor, amp sim, or you can even use a microphone to capture your guitar signal. The options are really limitless and you can be sure to get a clear sound. M-Audio explains the Crystal preamp:
“Our engineers designed Crystal Preamps to provide you with a transparent, low-noise preamp that guarantees the best sound from your microphones and captures your performance exactly the way you intended.
The M-Track Solo and Duo incorporates pristine A/D converters for 24-bit resolution digital audio with explosive dynamic range that captures every nuance and subtlety of the performance.“
Another confusing bit about recording guitar, is all the DAW options, and plug-ins that come with modern digital recording. Luckily, M-Audio includes a full software package for you to use with your new interface.
The Eleven Lite Software is a fully functional suite for recording your guitar. While it has tons of options, the program is relatively simple. You have your choice of amps, cabinets and tons of recording options.
“With the choice of modern or vintage amps, cabs and sounds that bring you from beautiful cleans to modern hi-gain aggressiveness and everywhere in between, Eleven Lite will help you achieve the wall of sound your recordings need.”
Yes, Metal enthusiasts… there are some great high gain amp models included! The speaker cabinet options are a little limited, but you can always load your own IR, if you are into that kind of thing. The vintage models are great for clean tones.
For a DAW, you get the M-Audio version of Pro-Tools. This is a “special” edition that is light on features compared to the more expensive version. But it honestly has everything you need to get started recording your guitar. The streamlined features make it more “plug and play” than other DAW programs.
“The M-Track Solo comes with a complete software package that has everything you need to get started right out of the box. Included are 2 great digital audio workstations (DAW)–Pro Tools | First M-Audio Edition and MPC Beats. These DAWs make it easy and fun to create professional sounding podcasts, music, or beat productions on any Mac or PC.“
The M-Track Solo and Duo also comes with a slew of Avid plug-ins and even a simple virtual synthesizer. This will give you hours of experimenting, and allow you to record literally anywhere. All you need is a guitar, your interface, and a laptop. These interfaces are perfect for people that travel, or just have limited space.
Finally, you also get 20 effects plug-ins designed by AVID, the people who created Pro Tools. These are all pretty basic, but are a great start to learning how to use DAW effects.
This AVID effects suite has reverb, delay, and compressors that can be used on your guitar to really dial in your sound. Make no mistake, these are professional quality effects designed to be used in the studio. Years ago these cost some serious cash!
The reverbs are particularly good. But all of the effects are meant to be used in tandem with the amp models and cab sims. You can also use them on vocal tracks! This is basically a virtual pedalboard for your guitar.
All of the software that comes free works with Windows, and Mac OS!
M-Track Solo and Duo: What’s The Verdict?
2020 has seen some of the biggest innovations for budget recording, and the M-Track Solo and Duo interfaces add to that immensely. It’s crazy to think these units start at only $39! You really get a lot for your money.
In my opinion, the software alone is worth the $39. You get amp models, a simple synth, and a special version of Pro Tools. M-Audio has officially cornered the market when it comes to affordable, beginner gear for guitarists.
Even if you already have a DAW that you prefer, the amp sims and effects come in handy for any guitarist on the go. But if you don’t, and you are a complete beginner, I can’t think of a better deal on the market right now than the M-Track Solo and Duo.
Does The M-Track Solo come with Software?
The M-Track Solo and Duo come with a Pro-Tools DAW, and Eleven Lite Guitar suite.
Can I record any instrument with the M-Track Solo and Duo?
Yes. The Crystal Preamp is optimized for guitars and microphones alike. But it will record anything that uses a 1/4” jack.
Is The Eleven Lite software that comes with the M-Track Solo any good?
Actually, it has most of the basics you need for amp modeling and effects. This is a great guitar sim for beginners.
Does the M-Track Solo and Duo have everything I need to get started recording?
Yes! It comes with a fully functional guitar suite, and a digital audio workstation.
Can I use my guitar processor with the M-Track Solo and Duo interfaces?
You can use your processor, or use your microphone to capture your guitar sound. You can also plug in directly and use the provided amp models.
What is the price for the M-Track Solo?
The MSRP is only $39! The Duo is $69.
Can I use the M-Track Solo and Duo for vocals?
Yes. There are XLR inputs for microphones, and phantom power for studio condenser microphones.