RME Babyface Pro Audio Interface REVIEW

There are plenty of portable audio interfaces out there, but durable units with more than two inputs and outputs? That’s a tall order. RME’s Babyface Pro is a robustly designed interface with plenty of input and output options.

The Babyface Pro comes equipped with two XLR inputs and outputs on the back side, and 1/4” ins on the side, along with 1/4” and 1/8” headphone outputs. The remaining side has optical inputs and outputs, along with a MIDI input (a MIDI cable dongle is included). The sleek, rugged metal casing is super heavy duty. The hard plastic case has cutouts to keep the cables organized, as well as a cloth bag, which is a nice touch.

The business end is the front surface; the large, well-lit meter display is easy to read, and the set mix buttons allow a mix to be recalled. Want to drop the level? The dim function drops things for quick reference. RME does have an extra app that works with it: their TotalMix interface is a virtual mixer and control layout.  Now it can be used with a Mac or PC, as well as iOS devices, which makes it a really flexible little unit. However, it will require an adapter cable to connect to thunderbolt. As it takes power from the device, there is a separate power adapter (not included), to keep it from draining a battery. It took a bit to get the TotalMix FX and the USB setting applications all working nicely on our iMac. The TotalMix FX app is very powerful, though, with a 3-band EQ as well as Reverb and Delay. Latency is a forgotten term with this, as the interface takes the load of monitoring off of the device. Forget all the extras if you’d like; using it as a “regular” DAW tool is super easy, with no oddities or issues to speak of.

All those features don’t add up if the sound quality isn’t there. Thankfully the preamps are great sounding and quite musical overall. The XLR’s pair nicely with a variety of microphones, and the 1/4” connections are excellent for plugging in an electric guitar or synth with no issues. Right off the bat, the tone is big and rich sounding, without any EQ or effects. With MIDI functionality, it makes for an excellent little production workstation. A great way to use this could also be running in a stereo mix from a live mixer for recording live shows.

Overall, it’s a well done unit, with options galore for inputs and outputs, and it does sound fantastic. Some prospective buyers might raise an eyebrow at the $750 price tag, but considering its portability, durability, and input and output options, it’s a recording device that can handle the road, and won’t drop the ball if it lives on the desk of a singer/songwriter.

PROS:

well designed and built, plenty of ins and outs

CONS:

external power supply not included, slightly pricey

STREET PRICE:

$749

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