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Product 485880

Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface

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The compact Alesis iO2 EXPRESS audio-recording interface is ideal for home studios and portable recording setups. The 2-channel USB interface for Mac...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

A 24-bit USB recording interface.

The compact Alesis iO2 EXPRESS audio-recording interface is ideal for home studios and portable recording setups. The 2-channel USB interface for Mac and PC-based systems enables you to record at up to 24-bit resolution for input into virtually all DAW, recording, and performance software.

The Alesis i02 EXPRESS recording interface is small enough to comfortably fit into your mobile recording rig, laptop bag, or backpack, yet it contains high-quality components and circuitry suitable for the studio.

Flexible recording and playback
The i02 EXPRESS interface's discrete-design preamplifiers and true 48-volt phantom power ensure that you capture microphones' complete signal. High quality analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog converters ensure that every detail of your session or performance gets recorded - and played back on your monitoring system. It's class compliant, so you can use the plug-and-play Alesis iO2 EXPRESS with virtually any computer.

The iO2 EXPRESS is USB bus powered so you won't need to carry a bulky power supply, and its performance is optimized for minimal laptop battery drain so you'll be able to track long sessions and gigs remotely.

Complete iO
The iO2 EXPRESS has 2 input channels. Each channel has an XLR microphone input, a 1/4" TRS insert for external effects units, and a 1/4" TS jack that works with line-level sources and can accommodate direct connection of guitars.

The Alesis iO2 EXPRESS sends and receives 2 audio channels on a single USB cable for simple, universal interface. You can monitor your sessions on any studio monitoring or other loudspeaker system via dual 1/4" balanced outputs. For remote tracking and alternative playback, the iO2 EXPRESS has a 1/4" TRS headphone output.

The iO2 EXPRESS features traditional MIDI In and Out jacks for playing and controlling software with keyboard and pad controllers, workstations, and other MIDI-compatible instruments.

Level management
Each channel has a gain trim control, and there's a master level control for optimal gain staging. When monitoring on headphones, you'll appreciate the dedicated volume control.

You can also visually monitor levels and operation using the tricolor, stereo metering tree and lighted status indicators.

Complete the package
The Alesis iO2 EXPRESS comes complete with a copy of Steinberg Cubase LE digital audio workstation (DAW) software. Cubase is one of the most popular DAWs in the world thanks to its intuitive approach to composing, recording, editing, and mixing.

In addition to the included software, the Alesis iO2 EXPRESS is compatible with virtually all audio and MIDI software.

FEATURES
  • 2-channel computer audio recording interface
  • Record up to 24-bit/48kHz audio into virtually any software
  • Monitor sessions with balanced studio monitor and headphone outputs
  • High-quality A/D and D/A converters, discrete-design preamps, 48V phantom power
  • Inputs for microphones, line-level sources, and instruments including guitars
  • Tricolor stereo level meter and lighted status indicators for visual monitoring
  • MIDI Input and Output jacks for playing and controlling software instruments
  • USB bus powered - no external power supply needed
  • Includes:
  • iO2 EXPRESS interface
  • USB cable
  • Software CD

Get a recording interface that goes where you go!

SPECIFICATIONS
SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS
  • Mac: OS X 10.2+
  • Windows: XP, Vista, or 7
  • USB port
FREQUENCY RESPONSE
  • MIC/LINE IN to USB OUT: ±0.1dB
  • MIC/LINE IN to MAIN OUT (through ADC/DAC) ±0.35dB
SIGNAL-TO-NOISE RATIO (SNR)
  • MIC/LINE IN (balanced) to INSERT OUT: 110dB A-weighted, input impedance at XLR or 1/4" jack = 600 ohms
  • GUITAR IN (unbalanced) to INSERT OUT: 99dB A-weighted, input impedance at 1/4" jack = 600 ohms
  • MIC/LINE IN (balanced) to USB OUT: 99dB A-weighted, input impedance at MIC or LINE jack = 600 ohms
  • GUITAR IN (unbalanced) to USB OUT: 94dB A-weighted, input impedance at 1/4" jack = 600 ohms
  • MIC/LINE IN (balanced) to MAIN OUT (through ADC/DAC): 97dB A-weighted, input impedance at MIC or LINE jack = 600 ohms
  • MIC/LINE IN (balanced) to MAIN OUT (through direct monitor): 95dB A-weighted, input impedance at MIC or LINE jack = 600 ohms
TOTAL HARMONIC DISTORTION + NOISE (THD+N)
  • MIC/LINE IN (balanced) to INSERT OUT: <0.001% Input Gain = minimum, 1KHz input signal, INSERT OUT = 5.7dBV
    GUITAR IN (unbalanced) to INSERT OUT: 0.034% Input Gain = minimum, 1KHz input signal, INSERT OUT = 5.3dBV
  • MIC/LINE IN (balanced) to USB OUT: 0.003% Input Gain = minimum, 1KHz input signal, USB OUT = -0.3dBFS
  • GUITAR IN (unbalanced) to USB OUT: 0.034% Input Gain = minimum, 1KHz input signal, USB OUT = -0.7dBFS
  • MIC/LINE IN (balanced) to MAIN OUT (through ADC/DAC): 0.005% Input Gain = minimum, 1KHz input signal, MAIN OUT = 5.6dBV
  • MIC/LINE IN (balanced) to MAIN OUT (through direct monitor): 0.006% Input Gain = minimum, 1KHz input signal, MAIN OUT = 5.6dBV
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
AlesisiO2 Express Audio Interface
 
3.9

(based on 31 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (17)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (6)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (6)

72%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Good audio (12)
  • Compact (11)
  • Easy to use (9)
  • Lightweight (9)
  • Versatile (3)

Cons

  • Unreliable (4)

Best Uses

  • Home studio (11)
  • Amateur recording (8)
  • Professional recording (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (9), Novice (5), Professional musician (3)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Alesis IO2 *Update*

*Technical Issue Update*The issues I was having that I stated back in October of last year are now resolved. Being that the IO2 Express does not have dedicated USB drivers, it relies...Read complete review

*Technical Issue Update*The issues I was having that I stated back in October of last year are now resolved. Being that the IO2 Express does not have dedicated USB drivers, it relies solely on OS drivers, now the issue was that there is a well known driver conflict that can occur if you have any Logitech Cam installed. Rendering the unit useless via USB. A simple google search regarding Logitech and USB Audio driver conflict will bring up a simple fix requiring you to edit the registry. Once done the unit will now function as promised with only a question of personal taste. I still am disappointed in Alesis' lack of mention for trouble shooting on the product page of their website, in addition to their less than reliable customer service, but the unit now functions properly. This is meant to be a notice for anyone who is experiencing these issues and are about to return it. It will save you and the company you purchased from a headache.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

problems with input levels and support for current Mac OS

I'll abbreviate this as I was kicked out when adding the final period to my lengthy statement. Controls are extremely touchy and pots have very little useable range. Condenser mics have to be turned...Read complete review

I'll abbreviate this as I was kicked out when adding the final period to my lengthy statement. Controls are extremely touchy and pots have very little useable range. Condenser mics have to be turned up almost all the way. The Cuebase software waveform (Cuebase installation nightmare is another post) Waveform looks like overdriven splatter, but playback is fine. A sleigh turn of the pot up or down, however, gives no signal or a truly splattered signal. BTW, it won't power a high end Schoeps mic but works fine with a cheap sony condenser.

BIG PROBLEM - device no longer works with mu recording computer after upgrading to latest Yosimite Mac OS. Service was very helpful, telling me to use a different computer. This is my expensive field laptop. Come on Alesis, this is a current product and current OS on a common computer. You should have drivers that make this work.

Reviewed by 31 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Highly recommended

By Chloe Fields

from Portland

Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

It's simple, cheap, and gets the job done. I bought this for a live gig and wound up using it as my primary recording device. If you can live with only 2 channles of input, this little device has all you need. Plug and play works beautifully in Windows 7. I've gotten the latency down to 8ms with the ASIO driver.

(6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Alesis IO2 *Update*

By ToneChaser

from Orange County, CA

See all my reviews

Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

*Technical Issue Update*The issues I was having that I stated back in October of last year are now resolved. Being that the IO2 Express does not have dedicated USB drivers, it relies solely on OS drivers, now the issue was that there is a well known driver conflict that can occur if you have any Logitech Cam installed. Rendering the unit useless via USB. A simple google search regarding Logitech and USB Audio driver conflict will bring up a simple fix requiring you to edit the registry. Once done the unit will now function as promised with only a question of personal taste. I still am disappointed in Alesis' lack of mention for trouble shooting on the product page of their website, in addition to their less than reliable customer service, but the unit now functions properly. This is meant to be a notice for anyone who is experiencing these issues and are about to return it. It will save you and the company you purchased from a headache.

(4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great for Beginning Recording

By Stereophobe

from Syracuse, NY

Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

This is the first USB interface I've owned, and I've been extraordinarily pleased with the quality of it. I get a smooth, clean sound out of both channels when recording through Cubase and Logic, and I never had any technical issues. The phantom power and extra inputs for peripherals are really nice to have for a unit this inexpensive. My one complaint is that I got some distortion in some of the sub-bass frequencies when monitoring (i.e. kickdrums would sound fuzzier than normal), but it wasn't a chronic issue and not a breaking point for someone who's just starting out recording.

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Wow.

By choffman1995

from New Jersey

See all my reviews

Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

This is a pretty sweet interface for the price. I was torn between this and the Lexicon Alpha but I got this for the phantom power. Glad I did. It has zero latency and is packed with features for a unit this price. AND you can record in true stereo. I dig that. Only thing is that some parts feel a little cheap. Oh well; it doesn't leave my desktop, anyway. Overall, you should get it; you won't be disappointed at all, except in the crap software it comes with. Logic is where it's at.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

More For Your Money

By MunkMan

from Cocoa, FL

About Me Professional Musician

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Clear Sound
  • Compact
  • Durable
  • Easy To Use
  • Lightweight
  • More for your money

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Home Studio
    • Mobile DJ
    • Professional Recording

    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

    I bought this to replace my old Alesis I/O2 from around 2005. I used that one at live gigs and the studio so it had a lot of miles on it even though it still works. My new I/O2 Express sounds exactly the same (same specs) and is basically the same except for the missing digital in/outs. All other interfaces in this price range (even those for much more) are missing the abilty to monitor the direct/USB mix. This function allows you to monitor what you're recording without any latency or causing the sound card to over work and stutter.

    (3 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

     
    1.0

    sad

    By bg

    from fl

    About Me Experienced

    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

    Tried this unit with 2 different computers and 3 different software programs. Had BIG latency problems under every configuration I tried.

    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Great without the included software

    By Pickin-n-grinnin

    from Downingtown, PA

    About Me Experienced

    See all my reviews

    Ask me a question

    Pros

    • Easy to set up

    Cons

    • Included Software

    Best Uses

    • Amateur Recording
    • Home Studio

    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

    I got this a while back and when I first installed it on a Windows machine, I tried the included cubase software. The onerous DRM was almost a non-starter for me. I fought with the licensing tool and when I finally got everything set up, the volume levels were unusable. Nothing would record despite having the ASIO software installed. I would recommend avoiding the cubase software, there's nothing it offered that seemed better than any free alternative out there.

    I tried it with similar results on Linux and OSX.

    I came back to it a year later with Windows 8 and Audacity and found that everything just worked. It was great. I've only got the one mic, so I'm looking forward to trying a second mic for recording acoustic instruments in stereo.

    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Plug and play

    By Anonymous

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

    I have bought it a month ago. It was very easy to setup. After plugging in I recomend to install the asio4all driver also to reduce the latency and the setup is done. Absolutely no other drivers, setting ups, instalation needed. The preamps are really good, and the direct/usb monitor mixing knob is very usefull. As I'm a keyboard player I like the midi interface too. I needed a phatom power too to run my condenser microphone. So its a really all in one product, really thinked over and developed and for small home studios. It is very easy to work with, and perfect choise for home studios.

    (2 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    1.0

    Terrible for Mac users

    By Caleb

    from Joplin, MO

    About Me Experienced

    Pros

      Cons

      • Poor Sound Quality
      • Unreliable

      Best Uses

        Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

        ATTENTION MAC USERS

        Do NOT buy this. If you plan on using Cubase with it it won't work on Mac. You have to download a driver for it to sound good and you can't because it's only for PC. I plugged it into Garageband and there was really bad hissing. Bottom line is this is way to expensive for how it works in a studio.

        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Satisfied with Product

        By SatisfiedAlesisUser

        from Pennsylvania

        About Me Novice

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Clear Sound
        • Easy To Use
        • Great Value For Money
        • Low latency

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Amateur Recording
          • Home Studio

          Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

          The Alesis took a few hours for me to figure out how set up the audio buses using the Cubase LE 5 DAW, but once I mastered that recording was quick. I really like the flexibiltiy and undetectable latency with monitoring the direct and output signals simultaneously. I am very satisfied with this product for recording electric/acoustic guitar, keyboard, vocals, etc...in my new hobby studio.

          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          This thing is my baby!!!!

          By Devan

          from Columbia, MD

          About Me Experienced

          Pros

          • Clear Sound
          • Compact
          • Easy To Use
          • Lightweight
          • Versatile

          Cons

            Best Uses

              Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

              I bought this unit to replace my Line 6 UX2 Pod interface after learning that Line 6 still had yet to fix the crackling issue that occurred after updating to Mountain Lion. After I got it, I plugged it right into my Mac via USB, set it up in Logic, and was recording 2 channels instantly within 5 minutes. Talk about an easy setup! I would stay away from the provided Demo CD. Just to make sure, I booted up into Windows, used the ASIO Driver and it worked just as flawlessly. If you think you are getting into recording and only need 2 tracks, stop wasting your time with other bloaty interfaces and get this beauty. Yes, it may not be made of aluminium die-cast metal, but it more than gets the job done.

              (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Does it's job

              By Lioneye

              from Colorado Springs, Co

              About Me Experienced

              See all my reviews

              Ask me a question

              Pros

              • Clear Sound
              • Compact
              • Easy To Use
              • Lightweight
              • Quiet
              • Versatile

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Home Studio

                Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                This device does everything it says, I can get really great stereo recordings with my AT mics. I use this for recording my acoustic guitar and my amps. If you have a problem with this device it is probably your fault. I have also used the direct guitar line in and it works great. I have had this for over a year, took care of it and it still works great.

                (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Hey, it works. You know...

                By HumanBeing

                from Richmond, Virginia

                About Me Experienced

                See all my reviews

                Pros

                • Clear Sound
                • Compact
                • Easy To Use
                • Lightweight
                • Works

                Cons

                • Cheap Quality
                • Get What You Pay For

                Best Uses

                • Amateur Recording
                • Home Studio

                Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                The Alesis iO2 is cheap, the cheapest interface you can really get. And it does work. However, this thing is made of plastic, except for the notches which are metal, so it's not super durable. Also, again with the cheapness, it has tendency, when surrounded by other electrical equipment and you touch it, to short circuit. All you do is unplug it then plug it back into the computer to turn it back on after this happens, but it is still unsettling. It records two channels at once which is dynamite if your using Audacity. However, when working with Audacity make sure you change the recording Hz to 48000. Which is another thing, like all Computer related stuff, there is going to be problems. I have not really had any. But considering how everyone's computers are different and everyone is using different recording software it is difficult to say who this will and wont work for. (It will work for an HP ENVY 15 on windows 7 using Audacity.) And the recording software included with the device is uh.....it might work. It has no manual and pretty incomprehensible on its own.

                (2 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                1.0

                Horrible

                By Disappointed

                from Washington, DC

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                  Cons

                  • Breaks Easily
                  • Unreliable

                  Best Uses

                    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                    The product never worked. I could not get output to my external speakers. I could not get input response when I connected the mic to the io2. I contacted Alesis and followed their exact instructions and it still didn't work. I tried returning it but Musician's Friend doesn't accept returns on audio interfaces that have software included so I am stuck with a product that doesn't work! It has just been a bad experience all around!!!

                    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Solid

                    By millardfillmore731

                    from Des Moines, IA

                    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                    I have a previous generation of the io2, but the features appear to be almost identical. This device is solid, reliable and easy to set up. I would recommend it to anyone who is looking for a cheap but drama free way to record ideas, or even demo quality work (with quality mics and equipment) on their home computer.

                    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    CHEAP BUT PRODUCES QUALITY SOUNG

                    By Clearmix10

                    from Mn

                    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                    Get this unit. Preamps are so clean and warms up vocals.It makes my vocals cut through the mix just the way i want it. This unit is a must have. It even has inserts for compressors -.

                    (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    1.0

                    Nothing But Latency Problems

                    By Anonymous

                    from Undisclosed

                    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                    Works but with over a second of latency. Tried all different drivers and configurations but cannot get rid of it. Using a new computer - 64 bit OS, 8 GB RAM, etc., so plenty of resources. Tech support takes weeks to get back to you and offers only excerpts from their FAQ anyway.Next time I'll spring for a PCI version.

                    (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    1.0

                    I'm returning it or throwing it away

                    By dragonrain

                    from Berkeley, CA

                    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                    This was a birthday present and I was very excited. I was looking forward to using the product. I got it in the store and the sales person assured me that the software was easy to use and that I would be able to put together basic recordings easily and quickly. I have spent numerous hours since getting the software activated, reading the manual, plugging and unplugging it to different USB ports. I was looking for a SIAB that I could take home, plug in, read the manual and start recording. I was led to believe that this product was simpler, easier and a better bargain. It isn't. It's cumbersome, the manual is incisistent and needs editing. Plus the software manufacturer - Steinberg must be contacted through the internet and there is no live technical support.Don't waste your time or money on this product.

                    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Best for the Price

                    By NAZ

                    from AZ

                    See all my reviews

                    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                    I bought one of these a few weeks ago and must say I am very impressed with it for the price. I have used it with a MacBook Pro and Mac Pro both running OS X 10.6.4 and it is 100% plug and play. Plug in the USB cable, change your sound input/output to iO2 and you are good to go. Latency is very low and basically inaudible to me. Sound quality is also excellent in my experience. If you turn the input gains beyond around 7 you start to get a little background hiss. But fortunately I have only once needed to turn one of the gains beyond 5, when recording speaking level voices, and the final sound quality was still excellent with only a slight audible hiss in perfectly quite sections. Normal singing, instrument levels usually only require gains of 3-5 where there is no perceptible noise. I have used it with my guitar with passive Seymour Duncans (gain 3-4) and an Audio Technica AT2020 powered condenser microphone (gain 3-8) with great results.I can not comment on the included software/CD because I have not touched it. I am currently using the interface with Garageband, Premier Pro, etc. If I decide I want a better DAW I will upgrade to a version of Logic so the CD is of no use to me. I am sure a much more expensive interface or mic preamp would sound even better, but for the price I think the iO2 is a fantastic product.

                    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    3.0

                    problems with input levels and support for current Mac OS

                    By Chris

                    from Charlotte, NC

                    About Me Experienced

                    Verified Reviewer

                    Pros

                    • Clear Sound
                    • Compact
                    • Easy To Use
                    • Lightweight

                    Cons

                    • Unreliable

                    Best Uses

                    • field voice overs
                    • Home Studio
                    • Professional Recording

                    Comments about Alesis iO2 Express Audio Interface:

                    I'll abbreviate this as I was kicked out when adding the final period to my lengthy statement. Controls are extremely touchy and pots have very little useable range. Condenser mics have to be turned up almost all the way. The Cuebase software waveform (Cuebase installation nightmare is another post) Waveform looks like overdriven splatter, but playback is fine. A sleigh turn of the pot up or down, however, gives no signal or a truly splattered signal. BTW, it won't power a high end Schoeps mic but works fine with a cheap sony condenser.

                    BIG PROBLEM - device no longer works with mu recording computer after upgrading to latest Yosimite Mac OS. Service was very helpful, telling me to use a different computer. This is my expensive field laptop. Come on Alesis, this is a current product and current OS on a common computer. You should have drivers that make this work.

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