NAMM 2019: IK Multimedia AXE I/O, a new desktop interface for guitar and bass
New guitar interface form the company that gave us AmpliTube
As predicted here on this very site, IK Multimedia is launching a new high-end guitar audio interface called the AXE I/O. The Italian company already knows a thing or two about recording guitars (see the AmpliTube range), so we are expecting great things from this new product.
IK Multimedia AXE I/O
Over the years, IK Multimedia has given us guitar players a whole heap of useful ways to record and capture our guitar tones. Its latest product in this long line of gear is the AXE I/O. It’s a guitar-focussed audio interface built around many things we guitar players need to get great recorded tones.
Class A PURE and JFET
Let’s check out the I/Os. A desktop box, the AXE I/O has 2 inputs and 5 outputs, with what IK call “studio-quality” Class A mic preamps with phantom power. Usefully for guitarists, there’s an option for re-amping too. On the main input section, we have the choice of Class A PURE and JFET, plus a pickup selector for use with active pickups.
I’m liking that the input section has the facility to match to the pickup impedance of electric or acoustic guitars. It all makes for a much better signal path and should help us on the way to recording some good tones.
With four voltage-balanced outputs and a headphones output, you should be able to set this unit up for most scenarios, with no hassle. You also get a MIDI in and out on the rear, letting you hook up any MIDI gear you want to use with this.
Guitar DAW Toolkit
I’m also a fan of the built-in chromatic tuner and the ability to re-amp. There’s also a handy controller input for plugging in an expression pedal. This last option means you can control volume or wah effects with a regular foot pedal when attached to the AX I/O. Neat. The software control lets you select your audio I/O digitally, as well as enabling you to control gain and meter behaviour too.
IK Multimedia also includes 150 guitar and outboard effects from AmpliTube and T-RackS products. The AXE I/O is 24-bit and can handle 44.1 kHz, 48 kHz, 88.2 kHz, 96 kHz, 176.4 kHz and 192 kHz recording rates. It will run on PC or Mac, making it compatible with just about any DAW.
After the announcement earlier this week of the Audient Sono guitar interface, it looks like we may have some great choices for recording our guitars in 2019.
RRP – USD 349 / EUR 349
- IK Multimedia AXE I/O front panel: IK Multimedia
- IK Multimedia rear panel connectivity : IK Multimedia
- IK Multimedia AXE I/O: IK Multimedia