M-Audio M-Track Solo vs PreSonus Studio 24c: Audio Interfaces Compared

If you want to record music at home, you might be wondering which audio interface to buy. There are many options available on the market, but two of the most popular and affordable ones are the M-Audio M-Track Solo and the PreSonus Studio 24c.

The M-Audio M-Track Solo is a 2-in/2-out audio interface that offers decent sound quality, low latency, and a simple interface. The PreSonus Studio 24c is a 2-in/2-out audio interface that features high-resolution sound, MIDI input/output, and a sleek design. Both of these devices are USB-powered and compatible with most DAWs and operating systems.

These devices are designed to offer high-quality recording and playback for vocals, guitars, keyboards, and other instruments. But which one has the edge over the other? What are their strengths and weaknesses? And which one is the best fit for your needs?

M-Audio M-Track Solo vs PreSonus Studio 24c

A Quick Look

If you want a cheap and simple audio interface that can handle basic recording and playback tasks, you may want to choose the M-Audio M-Track Solo. It has a USB-C to USB-A cable that can work with any device with a USB port. It also has low latency, ASIO drivers, and a software bundle that includes Pro Tools First M-Audio Edition and other plugins.

If you want a high-quality and versatile audio interface that can capture more details and dynamics in your sound, you may want to choose the PreSonus Studio 24c. It has MIDI input/output, high-resolution sound, and a sleek design. It also has a comprehensive software bundle that includes Studio One Artist DAW software and Studio Magic plug-in suite.

Great Value
M-Audio M-Track Solo front view upright

M-Audio M-Track Solo

  • Mobile-ready, bus-powered, 2-in/2-out USB.
  • Record at up to 16-bit/48kHz resolution.
  • Zero-latency direct monitoring with a dedicated knob.
  • One XLR mic input.
  • One 1/4″ switchable instrument/line input that allows you to connect different types of sources to the interface.
  • Two Line RCA outputs.
  • Crystal preamp provides transparent and low-noise sound quality.
  • 48V phantom power for condenser microphones.
  • Great value for money, excellent beginner option.
Versatile

PreSonus Studio 24c

  • Mobile-ready, bus-powered, 2-in/2-out USB-C.
  • Record at up to 24-bit/192kHz resolution.
  • Two combo mic/line/instrument inputs with mic preamps.
  • Two balanced 1/4″ TRS main outputs.
  • A mix control knob that lets you blend analog inputs with playback from your computer for low-latency direct monitoring.
  • Ladder-style LED level meters.
  • 48V phantom power for condenser microphones.
  • MIDI In/Out ports that allow you to connect keyboards and other MIDI gear.

Price Comparison

The M-Audio M-Track Solo is cheaper than the PreSonus Studio 24c, as you might expect from its lower audio resolution and fewer features. The M-Track Solo has a recommended retail price of $49, but you can find it online for around $40. The PreSonus Studio 24c has a recommended retail price of $149.99, but you can find it online for around $125. The Studio 24c also comes with a software bundle that includes Studio One Artist, Studio Magic Software Suite, and Ableton Live Lite.

If you are on a very tight budget or just want a basic and portable interface, you might prefer the M-Audio M-Track Solo. If you are willing to spend more or want a higher-quality and more versatile interface, you might prefer the PreSonus Studio 24c

Common Features

Both the M-Track Solo and the Studio 24c have some common features that make them suitable for basic recording and playback tasks. Here are some of them:

  • XLR/TRS combo input: Both devices have one XLR/TRS combo input that can accept either a microphone or an instrument cable. This allows you to record vocals, guitars, keyboards, or any other mono source with ease.
  • TRS input: Both devices also have a separate TRS input that can accept either an instrument or a line-level signal. This gives you more flexibility to record stereo sources or connect external devices such as synths or drum machines.
  • Phantom power: Both devices can provide 48V phantom power to the XLR input, which is essential for using condenser microphones that require external power.
  • Headphone output: Both devices have a 1/4-inch headphone output that lets you monitor your sound with headphones. This is useful for avoiding feedback or noise from speakers when recording.
  • Direct monitoring: Both devices have a switch that lets you choose between direct monitoring and USB monitoring. Direct monitoring allows you to hear your input signal without any latency or processing from your computer. USB monitoring allows you to hear your input signal mixed with the playback from your DAW or other software.
  • Gain controls: Both devices have rotary knobs that let you adjust the gain level of each input channel. They also have LED indicators that show you when your signal is clipping or too low.
  • Master volume control: Both devices have a rotary knob that lets you adjust the overall output volume of the device. This affects both the TRS outputs and the headphone output.

M-Audio M-Track Solo – Unique Features

  • Unbalanced RCA outputs: These are outputs that use RCA connectors, which are common in consumer audio equipment. However, they are more prone to interference and noise than balanced outputs.
  • ASIO drivers: These are drivers that allow low-latency and high-performance audio processing on Windows computers.

PreSonus Studio 24c – Unique Features

  • MIDI input/output: These are ports that allow you to connect MIDI devices such as keyboards, controllers, or drum machines. This gives you more options and flexibility to create and control your music.
  • High-resolution sound: This device can record and play back audio at up to 24-bit/192kHz resolution, which is much higher than the standard 16-bit/44.1kHz resolution. This means that you can capture and reproduce more details and dynamics in your sound.

Sound Quality Comparison

Both the M-Track Solo and the Studio 24c claim to offer high-quality sound, but there are some differences in their specifications and performance.

The M-Track Solo has a bit depth of 16-bit and a sample rate of 48 kHz. This means that it can capture and reproduce up to 65,536 levels of amplitude and up to 24 kHz of frequency in digital audio. This is technically enough to cover the human hearing range, but it is not very impressive compared to other audio interfaces on the market that offer 24-bit or higher bit depth and 96 kHz or higher sample rate.

The Studio 24c has a bit depth of 24-bit and a sample rate of 192 kHz. This means that it can capture and reproduce up to 16,777,216 levels of amplitude and up to 96 kHz of frequency in digital audio. This is much more detailed and accurate than the M-Track Solo, and it allows you to capture more nuances and dynamics in your sound.

The sound quality of these two audio interfaces also depends on other factors, such as the quality of your microphone, instrument, cables, speakers, headphones, and software. However, based on their specifications the Studio 24c has a clear advantage over the M-Track Solo in terms of sound quality.

Compatibility

Another aspect that you might want to consider when choosing an audio interface is its compatibility with your computer, operating system, and software. You want an audio interface that works smoothly with your setup and does not cause any issues or conflicts.

The M-Track Solo is a class-compliant device, which means that it does not require any drivers to work with most operating systems and software. It is compatible with Windows 7 or higher, Mac OS X 10.8 or higher, iOS 9 or higher, and Android 5.0 or higher. It also comes with a USB-C to USB-A cable that lets you connect it to any USB port on your computer or mobile device.

The Studio 24c is also a class-compliant device, but it requires a software application called Universal Control to access some of its features and settings. It is compatible with Windows 7 or higher, Mac OS X 10.11 or higher, iOS 9 or higher, and Android 5.0 or higher. It also comes with a USB-C to USB-A cable that lets you connect it to any USB port on your computer or mobile device.

Both of these audio interfaces are compatible with most DAWs and other audio software, such as Pro Tools, Logic Pro, Ableton Live, GarageBand, Audacity, Reaper, FL Studio, Cubase, and more. However, some users have reported some issues or glitches with certain software or operating systems, so you might want to check the compatibility before buying one of these devices.

M-Track Solo Pros

  • Very affordable.
  • Low latency.
  • Class-compliant.
  • Compatible with most operating systems and software.

M-Track Solo Cons

  • Low bit depth and sample rate.
  • No MIDI input/output.
  • No level meter

PreSonus Studio 24c Pros

  • High bit depth and sample rate.
  • MIDI input/output.
  • Class-compliant.
  • Compatible with most operating systems and software.

PreSonus Studio 24c Cons

  • More Expensive.
  • Requires Universal Control software.

Which One Would You Choose?

As you can see, both the M-Track Solo and the Studio 24c have their strengths and weaknesses. The best choice for you depends on your budget, preferences, and needs.

If you are looking for a cheap and simple audio interface that can handle basic recording and playback tasks, you might want to go for the M-Track Solo. It offers decent sound quality, low latency, and a simple interface that does not require any drivers or software. It also comes with a generous software bundle that can help you get started with your music production.

If you are looking for a high-quality and versatile audio interface that can capture more details and dynamics in your sound, you might want to go for the Studio 24c. It offers superior sound quality, MIDI input/output, and a sleek design. It also comes with a comprehensive software bundle that can help you enhance your music production.

Both of these audio interfaces are capable of delivering good results for beginners and hobbyists who want to record their music at home. However, if you want to take your sound quality to the next level, you might want to invest in the Studio 24c.

M-Audio M-Track Solo vs PreSonus Studio 24c