Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6
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Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6

Komplete Audio 6, USB audio interface from Native Instruments in the Komplete series.

public price: ¥299 VAT incl.
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MountAnDewMe 08/19/2013

Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 : MountAnDewMe のユーザーレビュー (content in English)

"Awsome for the solo recording artist"
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I purchased the NI Komplete 6 when I built a new computer system for recording on Sonar X2. I am the only one who will be ever recording so I did not need a load of input options. After careful review against other models in its price point the Komplete Audio 6 proved to have the best compliment of features to suit my needs. The unit offers 6 ins; 2 xlr-1/4" line mic jacks on the front, 2 1/4" line inputs on the back, and a stereo spdif input on the back. There are also 2 main outs for the monitors, 2 outs for either a second set of monitors or to route for other purposes, a stereo headphone out on the front, and of course a stereo spdif out on the rear.
This layout was important for me because it allows me to use 2 microphones at a time, which is the most I need at any time, and the extra 2 outputs allow me to keep my reamping devices easily accessible at all times. The spdif was also an important selling point because I plan on utilizing a Kemper profiling amp in the near future which will integrate with those jacks exactly as I desire. There is also direct hardware monitoring available and a huge volume knob for the mains on the top, it may seem silly but I have found that giant knob to be a really cool feature I did not realize until I started using the device. There are also MIDI in and out jacks which I like for the simplicity of connecting my older keyboard that has a great tactile feel but lacks usb connectivity.
While this was not the only piece that offered the connectivity I required I found that the specifications on the preamps, data transfer rates, ADA converters, S/N ratio etc. all were in a desirable range. While the other products I was comparing it to each had a forte in one area there were serious concerns in others. The NI piece was above average in every aspect with no soft spot in its design. It also is built solid and has a solid, heavy fell to it.

UTILIZATION

The unit is a USB connected device originally designed for 2.0 or 3.0 connections. It however now has current patches available to support the 3.0 platform that it was originally advertised to utilize. Of course mileage will vary with each computer and DAW used but I am getting about 13ms latency round trip from input to output. The input buffer is at about 5-7ms according to my DAW. If I am using an enormous amount of plugins or virtual instruments I will adjust the buffer which will bring my round trip up to about 17. On a current project I have 49 active tracks in playback, using 6 virtual instruments and 34 instances of amp simulators until I reamp them. There is no problem with playback or adding additional material at this point and frankly at 17ms with that load I am surprised at how stable the system remains. The drivers are rock solid in that respect and they are constantly adding updates to address issues that may be present in the user forums.
There is one issue I can say the devise has running under windows 8. There is a minimal amount of crackling when using applications like flash player, WMP, Quick time and other normal audio applications. It is annoying but minimal and only in non ASIO audio applications. There is a fix in the works but not available as of yet.

GETTING STARTED

This devise is a snap to get started with. Although I wish there was more documentation available with it the company's web site has answers for any issue that you may encounter. The customer service is also top notch and responsive as well if there is an issue. I had no compatibility issues on my AMD based system running Sonar X2. Everything works as advertised out of the box and there are no complicated software issues to deal with whatsoever. As close to plug and play as one could hope for. Even the registration and updates are simplistic to implement.

OVERALL OPINION

The thing I like most about the Komplete Audio 6 is how well balanced all the features are. I do not worry about any part of the signal chain being weak in any way. My only gripe is the occasional crackling in non ASIO situations but then again I did not buy it for those and can always click on the internal sound solution if it really bothered me that bad. For the price you can not find a better built unit with such good all around functionality. If you needs require more ins there are better options but if you are a solo recording artist under a real world budget there is no choice I could find that was better suited to what I wanted. The sound is very true and I would buy it again after my experience with the unit. I previewed solutions from Focusrite, Stienberg, Roland, and Presonus in the under $300 range and this unit simply had a more balanced offering. Don't forget you get the Komplete plugin package also with the purchase which was a more useable freebie to me. All in all this was money well spent.