Ease of use 1-5/5 (depending on the user)
Support: 2/5 (Avid/Digidesign has a horrid support service)
I have been a Digidesign fan since I purchased my first M-Box in 2004. So when Digidesign upgraded their product I was excited to see what new features the new M-Box had in store. For starters, we will start with the upgrades they made since the first release of the M-box.
One of the first and most important (IMO) upgrades that caught my attention, was the addition of MIDI ports. MIDI is a versatile component to anyone composing, or producing music. It is great for opening up your studio to add more hardware to the mix.
They also have added dedicated Monitor Output jacks now with a volume adjustment knob on the front. For years I spent my time using my "headphone" outputs on the original M-Box because it didn't have jacks dedicated specifically for monitors and on top of that it didn't have a volume knob for anything but headphones (and mics).
When the M-box 2 first came out, I heard bad things about the mic preamps that came onboard. For months I had friends telling me that the new preamp sucks. After getting one for myself, I realized that the preamps are pretty decent. I am not to educated on mic preamps so I can't go into great detail about them.
Just like the original, it comes equipped with two mic/line/DI inputs, which means you can have a mic inserted into Input 1 and a guitar inserted into Input 2 and record both simultaneously. It also has a S/PDIF input and output.
Before I upgraded, I would use my M-Box with Pro Tools and would have all types of problems recording. I would constantly get screens popping up in the middle of my recordings, so much to the point where I ALMOST gave up. After upgrading I have not had this problem. It runs smoother than a baby's bottom
Overall this is an audio interface that one must consider to buy. It is expensive ($449 withOUT the Factory Bundle), but it does come in several different flavors with different features. If you were looking into upgrading your studio and using Pro Tools, this is one of the best ways to go, as the hardware comes bundled with Pro Tools LE software (and Pro Tools can NOT work without the hardware).
(P.S. for those who don't know the original M-Box is no longer supported by Digidesign/Avid. With the release of Pro Tools 8.0.3 all support for it is gone, which means it won't work.)
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