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Jim Tavegia
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Behringer FCA 202

I will be writing more about this neat, little $80 24/96 firewire device over the next few days as I do some recording with it. Cheapskate is not the only one who looks for a bargain, you know. And yes, his Marantx SA 11 is a bargain considering what it does. Headphone output control on the front panel of this little 6" x 4.5" x 1" tall device makes this a truly user friendly. Your boss will never see it!

This FCA 202 sounds great out of the box. Easy install. 1/4" I/O. Very full bodied sound for such an inexpensive device. If you listen to music at work, especially on "cans", for $80 you cannot go wrong. It even comes with 4 and 6 pin firewire cables depending upon you computer set up. It even has 1/4" balanced out.

I will be recording some piano on Sunday with this device and we will see how it fairs in that department. I have run some CD output through it into my laptop and the sound is full, clean, and no latency issues...yet. Time will tell.

Behringer FCA 202

Regards.

Elk
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

Looks like a great buy and lots of fun!

Too bad that it doesn't recognize 88.2 as a sample rate.

I suggest that before gigging with it that you do some testing and listen to it carefully. While Behringer equipment often has a good yuck to buck ratio, it is built to a low price point. Their mic preamps, mixers, etc. generally sound extra crispy and have undistinguished bass. Many people will not notice this and won't care. It also isn't much of a problem for live applications and sound reinforcement. However, those with critical ears will easily hear the signature sound of Berhinger.

Let us know what you think after you have had more time to play with it. Piano is a good acid test. If you have good mics and a good preamp feeding it you will easily hear what issues it has.

Jim Tavegia
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

As of now the brightness is not an issue. It is truly a full bodied sound, toward warm if anything. The thing wins the smack-down of my Echo Indigo I/O card, hands down.

I will know more this weekend.

Elk
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

Cool!

It will be fun to learn what you think after working with it more.

bobedaone
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

I just bought the UCA-202 USB audio interface from Behringer. It hasn't arrived yet, but I can hardly wait. It's a small D/A converter with RCA in/out, so I can use my iMac as a source component as well as a recording device. It also features a 1/8" jack with level control for monitoring, as well as an optical out for people who are interested in such things. At $35, I thought it was a smashing bargain! I also bought a 10' USB extension cable so I can keep my computer in a convenient place. It should prove to be a popular gadget for people on a budget who want to give their computers playback and record capability.

Jim Tavegia
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

Recording with the FCA 202 was disappointing at best. What puzzles me is how can something that "seems" to sound very good on playback not sound decent using the same chipset on recording? There is a smoothness to the sound, just no crispness, space, air, or liveliness to it at all.

I tried 12 different stereo mic positions using both omni and uni capsules and "lifeless" and "one dimensional" is the best way to describe the sound. It is not even close to my old Sony DAT with a Pulse DAC.

It is not even as good as the Echo Indigo I/O on recording. I thought it sounded better than the Echo on Playback. Go figure.

I did not try higher bit rate recording, which I may do next week. I do not have much confidence that things would change much at 24/96. It wasn't much different with the Echo card at higher bit rates.

More proof that "there is no free lunch". If you want Metric Halo sound you just have to "pony up" with the big boys.

Elk
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

Jim,

I

Jim Tavegia
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

Probably, as I am in need of a good CD player as well. I would bet, but I will audition first, that is sound as good as most other $1K CD players that are out there and adds some nice recording features as well.

Regards,

Elk
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

The DV-RA 1000 counds very good as a CD player (I have now tried it.) It would do a great job as a CDP that goes on recording trips. You will love its sound at 24/88.2, 24/96 and DSD! It's great to be able to take the disk out and put it directly into your computer for editing, too.

My guess is that Tascam has priced the unit very aggressively to compete with the Masterlink.

Jim Tavegia
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

I have continued to spend time using the FCA 202 for playback from HD files in my Dell Inspirion 5100. It is a more than decent firewire playback device. Well worth the $80 for that feature alone. I do wish the recording end was better, but, such is life. Listening is still great fun.

bobedaone
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

I know we're supposed to be talking about the FCA-202 here, but I feel the need to express my disappointment with the little UCA-202 "USB audio interface". Despite my enthusiasm and hopefulness before the unit arrived, I must say that the sound was appalling. I suppose I shouldn't expect the DAC in a $30 plastic box to match my NAD C525BEE, but I was hoping for it to at least be listenable. After all, I've eaten up the majority of my hard drive with Apple Lossless audio files. I'm glad you're happy with the playback from your device at least, Jim. While we're on the subject, if anyone knows of a sub-$100 way to integrate my computer with my stereo without a separate DAC, I'm all ears.

Elk
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Re: Behringer FCA 202

Sorry to hear that your new box didn't do the job for you Erik.

I'm not sure I understand your question. Other than an external DAC (hardwired or WiFi connected) the only other way I know of is to use a built in soundcard to get your computer to operate as a transport/audio source for your audio system.

My initial thought is to suggest a decent built-in prosumer soundcard, although I can't be of specific help as I don't know Macs.

Are you thinking of something other than a soundcard?

One other idea is to look for a good used DAC. For example, a MSB Link Dac should be quite cheap used and they sound very nice.

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