M-Audio Fast Track C600 Audio Interface Review

Nov 1, 2011 9:00 AM, By Brandon T. Hickey



Mix Regional

The Mix Regional section for Mix's September 2014 issue focuses on Miami. Send us your studio news: updates, sessions, new rooms, plus club performances and installations. Let the Mix audience know what is going on! Send photos and descriptions to mixeditorial@nbmedia.com.

Clearly, there are a lot of positive things happening with the Fast Track C600. Great design, good amount of I/O, pleasing sonic quality and a useful new monitoring section are all among them. I do have some minor complaints. I have always liked the Fast Track Ultra, and was excited to see this new product that adds to all of my favorite Ultra features. The C600 does not offer hardware inserts, which were useful on the Ultra, and the C600 has two fewer line inputs. Otherwise, the C600 only improves upon its predecessor.

One thing I had hoped to see resolved on the C600 was the issue of hot-swappability. Both units are made to perform in a way that they can operate using exclusively USB power but only offering two ins and reduced outputs. To achieve full I/O, an additional wall wart power supply must be connected. Usually for the unit to be recognized in this mode, a reboot is required. Sometimes the unit will be found without rebooting, but it just isn’t consistent. One or two times, the C600 exhibited some sort of clocking issue where the sound crackled until power was recycled, leading to a necessary reboot, all during a session. It would be really annoying if that happened consistently.

A new fleet of M-Audio USB interfaces has been long anticipated, but it seems that the company has taken its time and gotten it right. The slick new layout is much more appropriate for the kind of desktop use where it will most likely be popular. The powerful software mixer gets even better in this new generation. The sonic quality doesn’t seem like a radical leap forward, but really didn’t need a major revamp. It’s worth noting that even the C400 is reportedly receiving the same type of quality mic pre’s and software control found on the C600, so that’ll be a major step forward from the Fast Track Pro. Playing the features-per-price game is always a balance of tradeoffs, and it seems like M-Audio is at it again, finding the perfect recipe of bang for the buck.

Brandon T. Hickey is a freelance engineer and audio educator.

Click on the Product Summary box above to view the FastTrack 600 product page.

Click on the Product Summary box above to view the FastTrack 600 product page.

Acceptable Use Policy
blog comments powered by Disqus

Mix Books

Modern Recording and Mixing

This 2-DVD set will show you how the best in the music industry set up a studio to make world-class records. Regardless of what gear you are using, the information you'll find here will allow you to take advantage of decades of expert knowledge. Order now $39.95

Mastering Cubase 4

Electronic Musician magazine and Thomson Course Technology PTR have joined forces again to create the second volume in their Personal Studio Series, Mastering Steinberg's Cubase(tm). Edited and produced by the staff of Electronic Musician, this special issue is not only a must-read for users of Cubase(tm) software, but it also delivers essential information for anyone recording/producing music in a personal-studio. Order now $12.95



Delivered straight to your inbox every other week, MixLine takes you straight into the studio, with new product announcements, industry news, upcoming events, recent recording/post projects and much more. Click here to read the latest edition; sign up here.

MixLine Live

Delivered straight to your inbox every other week, MixLine Live takes you on the road with today's hottest tours, new sound reinforcement professional products, recent installs, industry news and much more. Click here to read the latest edition; sign up here.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]

The Wire, a virtual press conference offering postings of the latest gear and music news, direct from the source. Visit the The Wire for the latest press postings.