If you want to improve and expand your sonic capabilities, you will definitely want to add an audio interface to your studio equipment.
There are a lot of great options, but one of the best is the U-Phoria UMC404HD by Behringer.
In this article, I am going to break down why this is an excellent choice for your music needs.
But before I do that, let’s look at things other audio engineers and I look at when choosing the right interface for our studios.
Behringer U-Phoria UMC404HD Overview
- Excellent sound quality
- Easy to use
- Compact and lightweight
- Versatile use
- Poor manual
- Issues with clipping
Complete Behringer U-Phoria UMC404HD Review
When you are looking to improve your audio viability, you will want to invest in a good audio interface.
Here are some of the things to look at when you are purchasing your new piece of equipment:
Knowing what you are looking to use this tool for will help you choose the right option for you.
Do you want to do a mobile stereo recording? Or are you recording guitar and vocals?
Each of those purposes will require different things, which means that different models will work better for each.
How do you intend to hook this interface up to your computer? USB? FireWire? Or other connections? This will narrow down your choices quickly.
You will want to look at how many ports you will need to complete your recordings.
Depending on the size of the projects you will be taking on or how many mics and instruments you will be using, you will want to choose an interface with the corresponding port numbers or even one that has extra to be on the safe side.
Are you going to want a MIDI in and out? This will help you narrow down the field as well.
If you want onboard latency-free monitoring mixes or need the extra ability to run plugins, then you will want to look for an interface with a DSP.
You will want to look at the tonality and audio quality output of the interface.
Lastly, you will want to consider the quality you get given your investment.
Your budget is also a factor in the choice as you want to make sure that the interface you choose gives you everything you want for a price tag that you can afford.
U-Phoria UMC404HD: Features and Benefits
This audio interface has a presence about it the moment you remove it from the box. It is wider than most coming in at 11” wide.
Though this is rather large for audio interfaces, you will understand why when you see the number of inputs. Other than the size, the interface itself is rather standard.
It is built with an aluminum chassis and the typical black of most Behringer models.
I know it may not be an exciting unit when it comes to design, but when you look at the features, you will feel your heart skip a beat!
Features and Benefits
This unit offers four channels with the standard XLR/TRS connectors. This gives this unit versatility, and when you add in the Midas preamps, the sound quality is guaranteed to be amazing.
There is a control cluster for each input. Though even with all the controls, there is still a lacking individual phantom power.
There is also a slew of outputs built into the back of the unit.
Design and technology-wise, this is a great unit, but when you add in the ability to use pro-level software for your recording and editing, you find yourself with an interface that is so versatile that it is hard to find fault.
Believe me, I’ve tried.
- Four channels for XLR/TRS connectors
- 4×4 USB 2.0 Audio/MIDI
- Audiophile 24-Bit/192 kHz res
- Compatible with recording software
- 4 input channels / 4 outputs +1 MIDI I/O
- Headphone output with level control
- 4 MIDAS mic preamps w/ +48V phantom power
This unit is an interface that works harder than most of its competition. It has amazing preamps that help round the sound and offer superior vocals.
It is also great with guitars as it has no issues with active pickups whatsoever.
Even better than all that, the unit is compatible with multiple OS’s and works well with almost all DAWs.
That said, it comes with a preloaded DAW (TrackitON) that is easy to use and great if you haven’t gotten one yet.
Behringer U-Phoria Alternatives
If you are looking for other options that are comparable to the Behringer UMC404HD here are a few excellent suggestions.
Behringer UMC202 Review
Designed with the patented black and gray color pallet, you may not see much when you look at this compact unit.
But once you take a more in-depth look, you will find that it is a fantastic alternative to the UMC404HD.
Another great option from Behringer, this USB interface is a bit more compact than the main focus of my review.
The sound’s resolution and the unit’s durability matches the UMC494HD, but the smaller build makes it an alternative for those dealing with a smaller space.
Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 Review
The Scarlett 2i2 is a model from one of the most popular brands, and with this 3rd generation variation, they have upped the audio equipment game to all-new levels.
It offers many great features, including phantom power and access to proprietary software fit with tons of plug-ins.
It is easy to use and built to be perfect for vocal/guitar recording. Plus, with headroom inputs, you don’t have to have any extra amps. You can plug right into it.
For the price tag, Behringer has brought us a well-built, high-performance interface.
This unit is intuitive and powerful, with a wide range of inputs and outputs to play with.
This is an excellent audio interface for home studios and is a fantastic option for producers and audio engineers of any level of experience.
I wholeheartedly recommend it!
MORE CHOICES: Best Sound Cards for Music and Audio Creation
January 9, 2023 – minor formatting edits
April 11, 2022 – minor content edits