Best Audio Interface For Streaming

Best for Portable Streamers: IK Multimedia iRig Stream

Best Value for Money: Presonus Revelator io24

Best Audio Interface for New Users: Behringer U-Phoria UMC204HD

Are you a streamer looking to step up your audio game? Look no further than the world of audio interfaces for streaming. Adding an audio interface to your rig can make a world of difference to the quality of your audio, from reducing latency to increasing connectivity.

Whether you’re a seasoned streamer or a beginner, my list of the best audio interfaces for streaming has something for everyone!

In this article, I’ll give you the lowdown on an audio interface and why you might need one for streaming. So, grab some popcorn and get ready to elevate your streaming content with our top picks!

What is an Audio Interface?

An interface is a piece of equipment that allows a user to connect various audio sources to their computer. These sources can include microphones, instruments, and other audio equipment. An audio interface is commonly used by streamers who require high-quality sound for their broadcasts.

While beginners may opt for an inexpensive USB mic that connects directly to a computer, an audio interface can provide more flexibility, allowing users to upgrade their microphone to a standard XLR one and connect to other sources.

While a beginner can start with an inexpensive USB mic, an interface offers more flexibility, and choosing the right one depends on individual needs.

Is an Audio Interface Necessary for Streaming?

An interface is a device that lets you connect different audio sources to your computer, for streamers looking to improve their audio quality, an audio interface is recommended. While many streamers opt for an inexpensive USB mic that connects directly to their computer, an audio interface allows you to connect various audio sources, such as a standard XLR microphone, other instruments, or external audio sources. It opens up more possibilities and gives you more flexibility.

You will need an audio interface with +48V phantom power if you have a condenser microphone built in headphone amplifier. Audio interfaces that include +48V power are not exclusive features of the best audio interfaces for streaming, as all audio interfaces these days usually include it.

There are different audio interfaces available for streamers at various price ranges. While an audio interface may not be necessary for every beginner streamer starting off with an inexpensive USB mic, it provides more flexibility for streamers looking to improve their audio quality.

For those who want to take their streams to the next level, investing in one of the best audio interfaces for streaming is worth considering.

Why is Audio Quality Important in Streaming?

Audio quality is an essential aspect when it comes to streaming. It can significantly impact the brand of a streamer and the overall quality of the content produced.

Investing in an audio interface is one of the most cost-efficient ways to enhance audio quality. An audio interface is a device that converts analogue signals into digital format for use with a computer. It effectively bypasses the computer’s internal sound card and allows for better audio processing.

One of the most important benefits of using an audio interface is latency-free monitoring. Latency is a delay that can occur between audio sources, resulting in frustration and difficulty performing or recording. The device eliminates latency in the monitoring process, allowing for real-time feedback and delivering exceptional performance.

The device also comes with high-quality preamps that produce a clean signal with low noise. This is essential for the m audio, a micro-level signal that needs to be amplified for listeners to hear, and the preamp can affect the tone and character of the signal.

Investing in a quality audio interface is a must-have for streamers or anyone who records audio. It can save precious processing power on your computer while providing excellent sound quality.

Plus, it’s an affordable and versatile option as it offers compatibility with various recording software. It’s also easy to use and efficient, making it a practical and reliable tool for streaming.

Do I Need an Interface with +48V Phantom Power?

If you plan on recording music or sound with a condenser microphone, you will need an interface with +48V phantom power. Condenser microphones are sensitive and require more power than a normal input, so audio interfaces have built-in circuitry to regulate and control the voltage and provide power to the microphone.

Almost all recently released audio interfaces feature phantom power, but it’s important to research beforehand to ensure the device has a reliable 48V switch and good circuitry. Bear in mind that the quality of the interface’s preamp is more important than the amount of headroom it provides.

When selecting an audio interface with phantom power, consider your budget and spend around 80% on studio essentials like monitors, headphones, controllers, and microphones, and set aside 20% for peripherals like software, instruments, and soundproofing.

A good mid-range audio interface with phantom power is the SSL2+, which has a 2×4 I/O configuration, 192kHz sampling rate, and 24-bit depth. Its preamps offer 62 dB of gain and can easily drive any instrument or microphone while delivering high-quality sound.

Factors to Consider When Choosing an Audio Interface for Streaming

Are you looking to level up your streaming game with a better audio setup? One important piece of equipment to consider is an audio interface. Here are some factors to take into account when choosing the best audio interface for your streaming needs:

Number of Inputs

Consider how many sources you need to connect to your computer. Will you have just one microphone, or do you need to add in instruments or multiple microphones for guests? Make sure the audio interface you choose has enough inputs to accommodate your needs.

Input Type

Do you have a condenser microphone that requires phantom power? Not all audio interfaces offer this feature, so look for one that can provide +48V phantom power if needed.


Latency refers to the delay between audio entering the interface and hearing it through your headphones or speakers. Low latency is important for streaming, so choose an audio interface with as little latency as possible.


Loopback is a feature that allows you to route audio from your computer (such as game audio or music) back through your audio interface and into your stream. This is particularly useful for streamers who play games or use sound effects. Look for an audio interface with built-in loopback functionality.


Ensure your audio interface is compatible with your computer’s operating system and streaming software. Some audio interfaces may also require specific drivers or software to work properly.

Best Audio Interfaces for Live Streaming

PreSonus AudioBox USB 96

The PreSonus AudioBox USB 96 is a compact, portable audio interface that delivers high-quality sound. It features 2 combo mic/instrument inputs, 2 balanced line outputs, and MIDI in/out. You can stream audio with pristine clarity with 24-bit/96kHz resolution and zero-latency monitoring.

PreSonus AudioBox USB 96


Perfect For: home recording enthusiasts and musicians


  • Has 96 kHz recording and class A studio quality pre-amps
  • A low latency monitoring option for accurate representation of what’s going on in the mix
  • With MIDI I/O for MIDI controllers and soft synths


  • Budget-friendly
  • Has combi inputs for microphones and line-level instruments
  • Comes with a free license for PreSonus’ Studio One Artist DAW


  • Some users have reported a low output level

The TedScore: 8.8/10

Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 (3rd Gen)

The Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 is a popular and great audio interface many live streamers use. It features 2 mic/line/instrument inputs, stereo line outputs, two balanced line outputs, and MIDI in/out. Its high-headroom instrument inputs and Air mode can capture every nuance of your performance.

Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 (3rd Gen)


Perfect For: on-the-go streaming


  • Comes with USB-C connection that works with PC, Mac, and iPad Pro
  • Has two combined XLR/jack inputs for recording instruments or microphones
  • With “Air” mode that enhances the high-end of your audio for a crisper sound.


  • Compact and portable USB audio interface, as it weighs just 1lb
  • Doesn’t require external power
  • Provides a transparent recording path without unnecessarily complicating your setup
  • Easy to set up with the included software package


  • No individual gain controls over inputs

The TedScore: 9/10

Universal Audio Apollo Twin MkII Quad

The Universal Audio Apollo Twin MkII Quad is a high-end audio interface with exceptional sound quality. It features 2 mic/line/instrument inputs, 6 line outputs, and ADAT/S/PDIF digital input. With its built-in UAD-2 quad-core processing, you can use a wide range of UA plugins to enhance your audio.

Universal Audio Apollo Twin MkII Quad


Perfect For: small studio setups


  • Four Unison-enabled mic preamps for precise mic preamp emulations from Neve, API, Manley and Universal Audio
  • Cascade up to 4 Apollo interfaces, 6 UAD-2 devices over Thunderbolt
  • Includes 60+ UAD plug-ins for realistic analog emulation and access to LUNA Recording System


  • High-quality A/D and D/A conversion for ultra-low THD and increased dynamic range
  • Onboard DSP for near-zero latency during recording and mixing
  • Access to a vast library of award-winning UAD-2 Powered Plug-Ins for vintage EQs, compressors, reverb and more


  • Higher price point compared to other interfaces in the market

The TedScore: 8/10

Behringer U-Phoria UMC204HD

The Behringer U-Phoria UMC204HD is a budget-friendly audio interface with decent sound quality. It features 2 mic/instrument inputs, 2 balanced line outputs, and MIDI in/out. With its 24-bit/192kHz resolution and zero-latency monitoring, you can stream audio without any latency issues.

Behringer U-Phoria UMC204HD


Perfect For: beginners/ new users


  • With two XLR and stereo jack hybrid inputs powered by genuine Midas preamps that can handle even the most power-hungry microphones
  • The mix knob allows you to monitor both the microphone in near real-time and your computer audio simultaneously
  • Entry level audio interface that comes with multiple inputs/outputs


  • Gives excellent value for entry-level users
  • The interface is simple to use


  • Limited number of inputs and outputs

The TedScore: 8.5/10

Mackie Onyx Artist 1-2

The Mackie Onyx Artist 1-2 is a compact audio interface with high-quality sound. It features a single mic/line/instrument input, 2 balanced mic pre and line outputs, and MIDI in/out. With its Onyx mic preamp and Cirrus Logic AD/DA converters, you’ll be able to capture every detail of your performance.

Mackie Onyx Artist 1-2


Perfect For: recording singers and instrumentalists


  • Boasts powerful 24-bit/192kHz converters and premium analog circuitry that deliver studio-quality sound with maximum headroom and ultra-low noise
  • Easy to use on the go or with a laptop


  • Relatively affordable compared to other audio interfaces with similar specs
  • Known for its “Built-Like-A-Tank” hardware design that ensures survival from day-to-day abuse


  • Does not have a dedicated low-latency monitoring feature

The TedScore: 8.5/10

Apogee Duet USB

The Apogee Duet USB is a premium audio interface with exceptional sound quality. It features 2 mic/line/instrument inputs, headphone amplifier, 4 line outputs, and MIDI in/out. With its Apogee AD/DA conversion and ESS Sabre DAC, you can stream audio with unrivalled clarity and precision.

Apogee Duet USB


Perfect For: musicians and sound engineers


  • Boasts an aluminium body and a sheet of black, toughened glass on top
  • Connects to your computer or iOS device via a USB-C connector
  • Known for their high-quality converters


  • Small enough to fit in a backpack
  • Simple to operate
  • Delivers professional-level audio quality


  • Quite expensive
  • Limited headphone output

The TedScore: 8.5/10

Rode AI-1

The Rode AI-1 is a compact, user-friendly audio interface with good sound quality. It features a single mic/instrument input, two balanced line outputs, and a headphone output. With its high-quality preamp and 24-bit/96kHz resolution, you can capture pristine audio for your live streams.

Rode AI-1


Perfect For: livestreaming, recording music, or doing a podcast


  • With ultra-low noise and high gain, capable of recording pristine audio
  • Easy to connect microphones, guitars, basses, and other instruments
  • Powerful enough to drive professional high-impedance models


  • Competitively priced, making it an excellent value
  • Simple to use with just one input and streamlined controls
  • Delivers exceptional audio quality


  • Doesn’t have MIDI capabilities

The TedScore: 7/10

IK Multimedia iRig Stream

The IK Multimedia iRig Stream promises to make it easier than ever before. This audio interface is specifically designed for use with mobile devices, offering convenient features that are ideal for musicians looking to connect with fans on social media and popular platforms like YouTube and SoundCloud.

The iRig Stream offers stereo line input over RCA connectors and up to 48kHz/24bit resolution for crystal clear sound. It allows you to pre-mix audio sources down to stereo or mono, loop-back mixes incoming signals with your device’s audio and features a headphone out with an integrated mic input for talking over your music.

IK Multimedia iRig Stream


Perfect For: producers


  • Portable and light-weight – easy to carry in your pocket or backpack
  • With loopback functionality and direct mic input to easily mix audio and record in mono or stereo
  • Supports many audio sources, such as digital mixers, iPhones, iPads, Android devices, and more


  • Offers exceptional value for such a versatile and high-quality product
  • With its plug-and-play functionality, the iRig Stream simplifies recording high-quality audio
  • Allows you to record audio even if you’re not streaming it


  • May not be the best option for professional DJs who require more advanced features

The TedScore: 9/10

Steinberg UR22C

The Steinberg UR22C is a versatile, reliable audio interface that can handle any live-streaming setup. It features two mic/line/instrument inputs, two balanced line outputs, and MIDI in/out. With its robust build quality and 32-bit/192kHz resolution, you can stream audio with unbeatable clarity and stability.

Steinberg UR22C


Perfect For: recording on-the-go


  • Offers fast and reliable connectivity through USB 3.1 Gen 1 SuperSpeed with USB-C
  • Has two D-PRE preamps that provide exceptional recording quality
  • Comes with Steinberg Plus, which includes free VST instruments and sound loop sets


  • Robust build quality
  • Supports a high audio resolution of 32-bit/192 kHz
  • Can be used with all major audio software that supports ASIO, Core Audio, or WDM


  • Not as versatile as those of other audio interfaces

The TedScore: 8/10

Presonus Revelator io24

The Presonus Revelator io24 is one of the best budget audio interfaces that offers decent sound quality for live streaming. It features a single mic/instrument input, 2 line outputs, and a headphone output. With its 48V phantom power and 16-bit/48kHz resolution, you can stream audio without background noise.

And honestly, this is the interface I’d recommend above everything else in this list.

Presonus Revelator io24


Perfect For: podcasters, live stream-ers, and recording musicians


  • The only audio interface designed for both recording and streaming
  • Comes with a loopback mixer that makes adding backing tracks, sound effects, or Skype interviews quick and easy
  • Easy to use, with an intuitive loopback mixer and a screen knob encoder
  • Features PreSonus XMAX-L microphone preamps and onboard processing


  • Delivers professional results
  • The io24’s Stream Mix mode lets you create a complete stereo mix with hardware inputs, effects, two channels of loopback audio, and reverb


  • Only has two XLR combi inputs

Tips on Setting Up and Using Your Audio Interface for Streaming

Choose the Right Audio Interface

When it comes to streaming, a good audio interface is a must-have. Consider your budget, the number of input sources, and connectivity options. Look for an interface with low latency, high-quality preamps, and phantom power for condenser microphones.

Connect Your Devices

Once you have chosen the audio interface, connect your microphone and other audio sources to your computer. Use XLR cables for high-quality microphones and balanced audio connections for line-level sources. Make sure to plug everything in before turning on the interface and computer.

Set Up Your Software

Use your streaming software to set up the input and output audio devices. The interface should appear as an input source, and your computer’s audio should be the output of usb audio interface. Ensure the sample rate and buffer size are the same for both the interface and the software to avoid latency issues.

Test Your Setup

Run a test stream to check the audio quality and levels. Adjust the gain and volume settings on the interface and in the software to achieve optimal sound quality. Avoid clipping by monitoring the levels and reducing the gain when necessary.

Use Headphones

Wear headphones to monitor the audio during the stream. This will prevent feedback and echo caused by the audio coming out of the speakers and being picked up by the microphone. It also lets you hear any glitches or latency issues in real time.

Maintain Your Equipment

Regularly clean your microphone, cables, and audio interface to ensure optimal performance. Keep the interface and microphones away from dust, moisture, and extreme temperatures.

Best Audio Interface For Streaming: A Recap

Choosing the right audio interface for live streaming is crucial to providing your audience with an engaging and professional experience. There are numerous options available that accommodate various levels of experience and budgets.

Understanding each interface’s features and connectivity options is important to ensure it meets your requirements. Some interfaces come with additional software to enhance your recording and streaming experience.

Portability is also a key consideration for some streamers, especially those who stream on the go.

Ultimately, investing in an interface that provides great sound quality, reliability, and easy-to-use functionality is important.

Your investment in a high-quality audio streaming interface, will pay off in providing the best streaming experience for you and your audience.

Best of luck! And remember, if in doubt, my advice is to go for the Presonus Revelator io24.

Wait, there’s more!!!

Are you interested in pursuing a music production career but unsure where to start? Look no further! In this article, we’ll guide you through the basics of getting started in this next article!

How To Get Started In Music Production


Is an audio interface good for streaming?

An audio interface is good for streaming as it can significantly improve your audio quality. Using an audio interface, you can benefit from latency-free monitoring, high-quality preamps, and the ability to connect XLR microphones or other sources for greater flexibility and versatility in your streaming setup.

Should I get a mixer or audio interface for streaming?

An audio interface is a great solution if you’re a live streamer looking for an audio device to ensure superior and pristine audio quality. This device can transform whatever sound you are recording into a signal your DAW can translate into bits, allowing you to edit and add effects to your audio during post-production.

Why do streamers use audio interface?

As a streamer, investing in an audio interface to improve your brand and audio quality during live broadcasts is important. A high quality audio interface provides key benefits such as latency-free monitoring, high-quality preamps for cleaner signals, and connecting various audio sources for greater flexibility and possibilities during streaming.

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