Fluid Audio has announced the SRI-2 Recording Interface, a desktop unit similar in format to something like the Mackie Big Knob. Because Fluid Audio’s primary focus is studio monitors, it makes sense that beyond its recording duties the SRI-2 also acts as a monitor switching box to let you A/B your mix on two pairs of monitors. It has 2 inputs and 4 outputs in all.
Capable of 24-bit / 192 kHz recording, this interface has Class A microphone preamps and, according to the manufacturer, fully transparent AD / DA converters. The SRI-2 has its two combo inputs placed on the front panel, allowing for a convenient change of sources without having to reach for the back panel. Furthermore, the housing is angled towards the user, making it easier to see the illuminated knobs and buttons – very welcome in dimly lit studios. There’s been some consideration given ergonomics here, which is certainly to be appreciated.
There’s a +48V phantom power button on the top, so at least one of the inputs, we assume, will let you connect large-diaphragm condensers (the official website doesn’t mention this feature at all). The case is made out of aluminium and so is the oversized volume control, which has a rubber grip for added precision in adjustment. All buttons have defined pressure points and the controls, says Fluid Audio, come with the right rotational resistance to make exact adjustments. The whole look seems to have quite a retro feel to it.
The SRI-2 can be used with an iPad with the caveat that it needs additional power supplied via its built-in USB Micro power input. The USB 2.0 connection provides sufficient power to operate professional headphones without volume restrictions. To get you recording straight away, the SRI-2 also comes with Steinberg’s Cubase LE DAW, and is compatible with pretty much all popular DAWs on Mac/Windows computers and iOS devices.
Price and availability
The SRI-2 is shipping now with the following street price: USD 229.99, EUR 219.99. We’d say it’s a reasonably priced and well-designed interface that probably delivers on its promises. Hopefully, driver support will be good so the SRI-2 makes for a nice purchase that will last you a long while.