Reviewed: Steinberg UR22C Recording Pack

Yamaha Music Australia | au.yamaha.com | Expect to pay: $449.99

Home recording is an endlessly growing market. As it becomes more and more accessible, more and more amatuer musicians record their own stuff at home, while professionals are able to work from home more and lower their overheads. Steinberg has been at the forefront of both professional and amateur audio for some time, producing variations of Cubase and Nuendo, as well as branching out into interfaces and sound cards, again, offering products for any level of profession.

In a bid to encourage more people to record at home, Steinberg offers the UR22C recording pack, an updated package that contains everything you need besides a computer to start producing hit records at home via USB-C. The pack contains a great and very usable microphone for a variety of sources in both the studio and at home, and would be a great first microphone for podcasting and streaming, of course coupled with the sleek-looking and great-sounding ST-H01 headphones.

 

The UR22C itself is a 2-in/2-out audio interface that connects via USB-C, offers phantom power to both combo XLR / 1/4” jack inputs, peak metering, gain control and a Hi-Z input for connecting a guitar direct to the interface for use with plugin amplifier emulators etc. It can record at up to 32-bit/192kHz, which absolutely matches (and admittedly exceeds realistic use) professional grade interfaces and sound cards. The included condenser microphone, the ST-M01, is a reasonably sized condenser that responds with an even and honest voice. Even for seasoned professionals, the ST-M01 is a handy mic to have around, while the ST-H01 are a great headphone with better than expected isolation and a balanced yet pleasing response. While recording, it’s important that monitoring is honest but doesn’t fatigue the ears, and the ST-H01 fulfill this brief. On the subject of monitoring, the UR22C interface features a mix knob to blend between input signal and DAW playback, for latency free monitoring if need be. There’s MIDI in/out for connecting a MIDI controller and main monitor outputs for external speakers with a volume control independent of the headphone mix.

 

In use, the UR22C recording pack is great. It really does contain everything you need to start recording, including a mic cable and mic stand clip for the ST-M01. I was up and running in minutes, and the pack also contains a download of Cubase’s streamlined Cubase AI, a complete DAW for recording and mixing, as well as WaveLab LE, a mastering and finishing software package. What’s more, Cubase AI includes a bunch of plugins to tweak and hone in on your sound once it’s recorded. There’s channel strips, time-based effects for space and ambiance, as well as a suite of guitar and bass amplifier plugins for direct-recording and re-amping. The interface connects easily and, where USB-C is available, data transfer is phenomenally fast. Monitoring is crystal clear through the ST-H01 headphones, and the ear cups sit comfortable against the head, even for extended periods. Cubase is fairly easy to navigate, even for beginners, and Cubase AI is even more so.

 

Steinberg provided a great product in the first of their recording packs, and continue to do so in every revision, now in the UR22C Recording Pack. The UR22C interface itself is a stellar and worthwhile investment, providing both a great first interface for budding music producers, and a great solution to on-the-go or home recording when away from a bigger studio, as it is bus-powered when using USB 3.0 and USB-C, so no external power is required. Even for seasoned veterans with mic lockers full of vintage colour and taste, the ST-M01 will find its way onto recordings in one way or another. The UR22C recording package is a no-brainer for anyone either already in, or getting into recording, whether that be professional or just at home.

Hits and Misses

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Contains everything to start recording

All products will be useful even as experience grows

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