When you’re a musician, the audio interface will be your bread and butter. When it comes to choosing an audio interface for your home studio, there are many factors that come into play. It’s what connects all of your workstations, so it’s vital to get one that works for you.
Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 vs. Komplete Audio 6 mk2 are two popular options on the market today. Still, they have very different qualities: one is designed for home studios while the other is built for professionals. The most important thing is the sound quality and features of the interface. Focusrite Audio interfaces have a reputation for being some of the best in sound quality, and they offer high-end models with plenty of input/output options.
Consider which features are most important to you before deciding because these interfaces vary in price range depending on what they offer!
|Feats.||Scarlett 8i6 3rd gen||Komplete Audio 6 mk2|
|No. of I/O||8/6||4/4|
|Resolution||24 bit /192 kHz||24 bit /192 kHz|
|USB 2.0 port||Yes||Yes|
|Latency||super-low latency||low to zero latency|
|Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 (3rd Gen) USB Audio Interface with Pro Tools | First||1,488 Reviews||Check Latest Price|
|Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 Mk2||494 Reviews||Check Latest Price|
Komplete Audio 6 mk2
Komplete Audio 6 comes with a high resolution of 24 bit / 192 kHz and offers you 4 inputs / 4 out. The prices range from 200 – 250 dollars, depending on the supplier.
It’s a premium quality interface that will provide you with all the features and software to start recording right away. It also comes with very low latency and two powerful pre-amps to make the experience even smoother.
Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 3rd gen
Like Audio 6, the Scarlett 8i6 (3rd gen) comes with a 24bit /192 kHz stunning resolution. The 6 inputs/6 outputs give it even more value.
The second generation comes with super-low latency, meaning that a latency roundtrip was measured, working with 32 samples at 96 kHz on Mac pro, and the result was 2.7 ms. Unlike Audio 6, Scarlett 8i6 is not bus-powered.
Now, Let’s look at some additional features, such as their design, durability, software compatibility, and sound quality.
1. Build and design
We might choose some products depending on the design’s beauty, but in audio interfaces, the building plays a more important role.
These interfaces are strongly built to withstand everyday use in the studio, concerts, and roads. They both come with a strong metallic body that offers you more durability for years of use.
Like many of its predecessors, Scarlett 8i6 (3rd gen) comes with a beautiful red metallic body and a clear and user-friendly interface. It weighs 1.22 kg (2.68 pounds).
Audio 6 is lighter than Scarlett, and it weighs 0.85 kg (1.87 pounds). It has a black and silver, sleek and elegant body. The user interface is simple, elegant and user-friendly, but is likely not appropriate for beginners.
Komplete Audio 6 – build and design
Like many variations of the Komplete Audio, the design remains relatively the same. Elegant rectangular shape, with a clean and simple interface, which might not be appropriate for beginners.
Most of the latest models, including Audio 6 and 6 MK2, come in black or black and silver colors. Audio 6 MK2 is completely black, including the buttons.
The body might look very sturdy but is, in fact, lighter compared to Scarlett. That, of course, doesn’t mean that it lacks durability and strength.
Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 (3rd) gen – build and design
Scarlett 8i6 stays true to the sturdy metal body, with a beautiful red color, just like many of its predecessors. Its weight is 1.22 kg (2.68 pounds), making it heavier than Audio 6 and possibly a little more sturdy.
The user interface is clean and user-friendly and might be more appropriate for beginners than Audio 6’s, but it is still more suited to skilled users.
Both interfaces are sturdy and built to last. Scarlett stays true to its classic red color, while Audio 6’s rectangular design stays true to more neutral colors (silver and black). Scarlett is heavier than Audio 6, which might make it a bit stronger.
2. Sound quality
When buying an audio interface, sound quality is the main feature. Two important factors will determine the sound’s quality: sample rate and bit depth.
The bit depth measures the fidelity of your device. The higher the number, the more the recording will be truthful to the original. You will want to look for 24-bit interfaces if you require more professional results.
The sample rate will tell you the rate at which the analog signal samples are converted to digital.
The appropriate range of an interface should be 24 bit / 96 kHz or higher for professional results. These devices come with 24 bit /192 kHz, which is above the recommended range.
Komplete audio 6 sound quality
Audio 6 packs 24 bit / 192 kHz and a MIDI controller. It comes with two high-quality pre-amps and with minimum to zero latency. 48V Phantom power gives it an extra edge.
It’s designed to connect microphones, MIDI instruments, different guitars, and more. The extremely low latency allows you to record vocals, guitars, and other sources without any delay
Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 3rd gen sound quality
Just like Audio 6, this Scarlett comes with 24 bit / 192 kHz and a MIDI controller. Two Scarlett preamps and super low latency give it more added value. Just like Audio 6, this interface has no issues with latency or power.
Both Scarlett 8i6 (3rd gen) and Audio 6 come with a MIDI interface, low to zero latency, and the same sound resolution – 24 bit /192 kHz.
They both pack two strong top-notch preamplifiers. While Audio 6 is bus-powered, this particular Scarlett model is not.
The speed used for the sound signal to reach the earphones, speakers, or amplifier is measured by latency. When buying an audio interface, zero or minimum latency is an important feature.
That means there is no or minimal delay of the sound recorded and the sound you hear. The sound is there in “real-time” without delay, and you can listen while you record, adding different instruments and effects.
Komplete Audio 6 – monitoring
Audio 6 comes with a minimum to zero latency and is a device with one of the lowest latency levels out there, confirmed by many satisfied users.
This will allow you to work without delays and include different effects and instruments.
Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 3rd gen – monitoring
Scarlett 8i6 of the second generation has been measured with a 2.7 ms latency when working with 32 samples at 96 kHz.
The lowest perceivable limit that the average human ear can still “notice” is 5ms. So you could say the super low latency is true to its name, with Scarlett 8i6 (3rd gen).
As you can see, both of the interfaces come with super low to zero latency, and there will be no perceivable delay, using any of them, as they both perform under the still perceivable threshold (5ms), in optimal conditions (proper updates, proper software used, etc.).
4. Compatible devices and software features
Most of the audio interfaces on the market are compatible with Windows and Mac. Depending on the release year of the device, some of them might be compatible with older versions of Windows and Mac and with newer versions when properly updated
Komplete Audio 6- compatibility
Komplete Audio 6 will work with Windows XP, Windows 7 and Vista, Windows 8 and 10 with proper updates, and Mac 10.8 or higher.
It comes with more than 3GB of different effects, instruments, recording tools, and useful software. Traktor LE software included is especially useful for DJs.
Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 3rd gen – compatibility
Scarlett 8i6 (3rd gen) will work with Windows 7, 8 and 10, Mac 10.10, or more. It also comes with Pro Tools (real-life guitar emulations), Tone Bundle, Softube time, Focusrite plug-in suite, 2GB of samples from Loopmaster, and more.
Both of the interfaces are compatible with Windows and Mac and come pre-packed with lots of useful software, effects, and samples, to give you the best possible recording, mixing, and creative start.
Pros and cons of Komplete Audio 6 mk2
- 24 bit /192 kHz resolution
- MIDI interface
- very low latency
- 48V Phantom power
- sturdy and strong metallic body\
- independently controlled headphones output and source switch
- the best value for money
- Some users might experience minor issues with software compatibility, but most of the problems are resolved with regular updates
- very few issues have been reported with this model, and most of the users are very satisfied with the overall experience
Pros and cons of Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 3rd gen
- 24 bit /192 kHz resolution
- MIDI interface
- sturdy and strong metallic body
- super-low latency
- a large amount of useful software, effects, and samples
- the best value for money
- headphones pre-amplifier can be weak at times
- can sometimes switch slowly between different sample rates
- very few issues reported with this model
- Record audio in immaculate quality – up to 192 kHz/ 24-bit
- Connect your whole setup – 4 analog in/out, 2 digital in/out, 2 headphone out, and MIDI in/out
- Get creating with all the software you need to record and build tracks, plus synths, effects, and more
- Two of the best performing mic preamps the Scarlett range has ever seen, now with switchable Air mode to give your recordings a brighter and more open sound. Two high-headroom instrument inputs to plug in your guitar or bass. Six balanced line inputs for connecting synthesizers, drum machines, and other line-level sources. Four balanced outputs for clean monitoring and sending audio out to effects pedals or other outboard gear.
- High-performance converters enable you to record and mix at up to 24-bit/ 192kHz.
- Quick start tool to get up and running easier than ever.
Both of the interfaces are top quality and suited for professional use. They both come with a high sound resolution 24 bit /192 kHz resolution, a MIDI interface, and very low latency.
The only weakness of this particular Scarlett model is that it is not bus-powered. It’s safe to say they are both strongly built and can withstand years of daily use.
They both come with two strong and top quality preamplifiers, which makes the experience even better.
Check our list of some of the best audio interfaces 2019 if you are looking for interfaces
But the overall winner for this is the Scarlett 8i6 3rd gen as it has more I/O and has comparatively lower latency which is more of an importance to me
Last update on 2021-08-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API