What’s all this about a recording studio in my pocket?
Well, perhaps that’s not entirely accurate, but the Pro DUO is pocket-sized and provides a professional-quality means for hooking up a microphone, guitar, keyboard or other music instrument to a recording device. That recording device can be an iPhone, so in theory you could have “the recording studio” in two pockets – one for the Pro DUO, one for the phone.
Wait, circle back a bit – what exactly is this device?
It’s an audio interface, carrying dual XLR/TRS audio jacks and MIDI in/output jacks, meaning you can hook up two channels of gear on one side – let’s say a guitar and a mic – and output a high quality signal to a Mac, PC, iPhone or Android recording device. Onboard there are 24-bit analogue-digital/digital-analogue converters, a headphone jack and level control. Oh, and it’s able to be powered by USB, wall socket or a pair of AA batteries.
And it’s small?
Oh yes – 75 x 127 x 37mm, to be precise. And It weighs under 200g. And the batteries will give you about three and a half hours of recording time. So it really is a pretty portable device.
Well, some might question the need to have two inputs on what looks, on the surface, to be a device most suited to helping songwriters record musical sketches on the go. It could seem like overkill, really. But IK Multimedia, maker of the Pro DUO, would say that’s it’s a professional quality mobile interface, no mere sketching device – and thus its two inputs are fully justified. And do I need special software too? The device comes bundled with a bunch of apps for all its compatible recording platforms, but should work with your favourite third-party software too, such as Cubase, Logic Pro X, Pro Tools and Ableton Live.
OK, I’m twanging my guitar in anticipation. So what’s the damage?
The IK iRig Pro DUO is on sale right now, priced at about £180. So it’s not cheap, but then again it is pretty much sitting in a category of its own.