Should I Replace This (Working) 12-year Old Audio Interface?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by tlite, Jun 15, 2020.

  1. Great vintage unit! Keep using it until it breaks.

  2. Upgrade now! Throw that dinosaur in the trash, along with your flip-phone and Palm Pilot.

  1. tlite


    Aug 18, 2016
    Time to upgrade from an M-Audio Profire 610? [Specs and Images below]

    Released in 2008, and drivers haven't been updated since 2014.

    It still works (using Cubase 9.5 on a Windows 10 PC), but I don't know what I don't know about newer interfaces. What might I be missing by not upgrading to something more recent?

    Should I drive the Profire 610 until the wheels fall off, or go shopping?


    • Up to 24-bit/192kHz for high-definition audio
    • Flexible onboard DSP mixer
    • 2 preamps with award-winning M-Audio Octane™ technology
      • Phantom Power
      • 20dB pad on each preamp
      • Signal/peak LED indicator lights

    • 6 inputs including:
      • 2 XLR/TS combo jacks for mics or instrument level inputs
      • 2 ¼” TRS balanced line inputs
      • Stereo S/PDIF in

    • 10 outputs including:
      • 8 ¼” TRS balanced line outs
      • Stereo S/PDIF out

    • 2 ¼” TRS headphone outputs
    • Built-in 1 x 1 MIDI interface
    • 2 FireWire (IEEE 1394) ports
    • JetPLL jitter elimination technology
    • Standalone operation as 2 mic pre/2-channel A/D-D/A converter
    • User-assignable master volume knob
    • Powered via FireWire bus or external power supply
    • Half-rack-space form factor fits in Universal Rack Tray
    • Compatible with major audio software including Pro Tools*, Cubase, Logic, Sonar, Live and GarageBand
    • Line Inputs (Balanced)
      • Frequency Response: +/- 0.1dB, 20Hz to 22kHz, +/- 0.2dB, 20Hz to 80kHz (192kHz)
      • Signal-to-Noise Ratio: -108dB (A-weighted)
      • Dynamic Range: 108dB (A-weighted)
      • THD+N: 0.002% (-94dB), 1kHz, -1dBFS
      • Crosstalk: <-110dB @ 1kHz
      • Maximum Input level: +16.1dBu, typical
      • Input Impedance: >20k ohm, balanced

    • Mic Inputs (Balanced) At Min Gain, No Pad
      • Frequency Response: +/- 0.2dB, 20Hz to 22kHz
      • Signal-to-Noise Ratio (min gain, no pad): -108dB (A-weighted)
      • Dynamic Range (min gain, no pad): 108dB (A-weighted)
      • THD+N (min gain, no pad): 0.0022% (-93dB) @ -1dBFS, 1kHz
      • Crosstalk: < -110dB @ 1kHz
      • Maximum Input level: from +28dBu @ min gain, pad on to -45dBu @ maxgain, no pad
      • Input Impedance: 3.7k ohms, balanced, no pad
      • Adjustable Gain: >53dB without pad
      • Pad: -20dB

    • Inst. Inputs (Unbalanced) At Min Gain, No Pad
      • Frequency Response: +/- 0.2dB, 20Hz to 22kHz
      • Signal-to-Noise Ratio (min gain, no pad): 107dB (A-weighted)
      • Dynamic Range (min gain, no pad): 107dB (A-weighted)
      • THD+N (min gain, no pad): 0.0025% (-92dB), 1kHz, -1dBFS
      • Crosstalk: < -110dB @ 1kHz
      • Maximum Input level: from +14.5dBV @ min gain, no pad to -39dBV @ maxgain, no pad
      • Input Impedance: 1M Ohm unbalanced
      • Adjustable Gain: >53dB without pad

    • Line Outputs (Balanced)
      • Frequency Response: +/- 0.1dB, 20Hz to 22kHz+/- 0.2dB, 20Hz to 80kHz (192kHz)
      • Signal-to-Noise Ratio: -108dB (A-weighted)
      • Dynamic Range: 108dB (A-weighted)
      • THD+N: 0.0016% (-96dB) @ -1dBFS, 1kHz
      • Crosstalk: < -105dB @ 1kHz
      • Maximum Output Level: +15.9dBu balanced, typical
      • Output Impedance: 940 ohm balanced

    • Headphone Outputs at Maximum Volume into 32 ohm Load
      • Frequency Response: +/- 0.1dB, 20Hz to 22kHz
      • Signal-to-Noise Ratio: -108dB (A-weighted)
      • Dynamic Range: 108dB (A-weighted)
      • THD+Noise: 0.003% (-90.0dB), 1kHz, -1dBFS
      • Max Output Level into 32 ohms: +2.9dBV, typical
      • Power into Ohms: 60 mW into 32 ohms
      • Output Impedance: 75 ohm
      • Load Impedance: 24 to 600 ohms
      • Crosstalk: <-75dB @ 1kHz

    • *Typical measurements at 48kHz sample rate unless otherwise stated.
  2. QweziRider

    QweziRider Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 15, 2008
    Northern Nevada, U.S.
    That's what I did. Had the M-Audio Delta 1010 forever and a day. Way out of date on drivers. But it did the job. Finally upgraded my computers a couple times removed from the original computer on this interface. At the same time, some issues started to crop up with a channel or two, wanted to have 16 channels in to do a full band all at once. Wheels fell off as far as I was concerned, onto a couple Focusrite Saffire Pro40 boxes. Now I guess they're getting old, but hey, they still work great. I'll drive the wheels off them now.

    So hey, if it still does what you want it to do...
    TOOL460002, RumbleBot and tlite like this.
  3. AGCurry

    AGCurry Supporting Member

    Jun 29, 2005
    St. Louis
    The thing that drives obsolescence of audio interfaces is more often the platform to which they are connected. I had an Aardvark Q10 that worked great. The advent of Win XP made it into a boat anchor. All things considered, XP was such an improvement that I'm not sorry, but progress has its drawbacks.

    Use it until you can't.
    DirtDog, QweziRider and tlite like this.
  4. I would keep it but still be looking for an updated model or, more and more preamps and inputs. Because...
    Well really, just because:D
    tlite likes this.
  5. tlite


    Aug 18, 2016
    Interesting. I was wondering if I might be missing out on major interface improvements that would make recording/life easier. If it's really more about the platform compatibility- and it's working with what I have (Win 10 with Cubase 9.5), sounds like no reason to move on?
  6. silky smoove

    silky smoove Supporting Member

    May 19, 2004
    Seattle, WA
    If the interface is still functioning with your computer and its current OS, you like the sound of it, it performs with serviceable latency that doesn't detract from your artistic process and doesn't lack anything you've identified as being present on other interfaces then the answer is "no reason to move on." If any of those items is deficient then you've got something to consider.
    equill and tlite like this.
  7. I still mix through an Echo Layla24/96 and Gina3G combo and they still sound great. They link together in via drivers, too, so no need to time sync them externally. Luckily, they stopped support at Windows 7 drivers, but Windows 10 uses them just fine. I'm gonna run these until I can't anymore. I use a newer Tascam US-1800 for remote recording and it's just ok. Not nearly as nice as the Echo units, but it is USB and works with my remote tracking laptop. If it ain't broke, don't fix it!
    tlite likes this.
  8. DigitalMan

    DigitalMan Bring Back Edit/Delete

    Nov 30, 2011
    Bay Area, CA
    I think the M-Audio ProFire series all sounded pretty darn good. I'd just plan to potentially need to replace it the next time you make a significant upgrade elsewhere in the system such as OS update or DAW update. I'm not saying the next update will break it. It probably won't. And until it stops working it will get the job done just fine. It's just planning for the (maybe) inevitable. It could work just fine for 20 more years for all we know.

    Some of the newer interfaces in the same category (consumer focused / 4-6 inputs or outputs) may have slightly better innards and will definitely have up to date drivers. A comparable new interface can be had in the $200-300 range. It's doubtful there would be a distinctly audible difference IMO.
    tlite likes this.
  9. The Profire has a lot of I/O. That's super handy at times. You could even do a 5.1 mix. Great if you do any video mixing. I like the pull pots on it for a pad.
    It's not outdated really.
    Line 6 developed their UX series interfaces at least 15 years ago and they still sell them Brand New. They really have done a great job on the Helix Native and they need a good modern Guitar/Bass targeted interface to go alone with it. At least something that looks less plastic even if it doesn't effect the sound.
  10. Wood and Wire

    Wood and Wire

    Jul 15, 2017
    Why not put the money you were thinking of spending on an upgrade, into one or two really good preamps / channels that have S/PDIF output, and connect that to your Profire 610?
  11. And I

    And I

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    I have a firewire 410 m-audio device and it was removed from service a long time ago. The mic preamps / line inputs are meh at best, they clip easily and the pad sounds like a wet blanket. Compared to the newest offerings, it's definitely sub-par. It worked out great with electronic drums sending it midi, my laptop running Battery, and the m-audio outs feeding the PA. When I tried using is as a proper recording device, it fell flat.
    tlite likes this.
  12. SubHuman


    Dec 29, 2005
    Good Old USA
    If you have a lot of multi-track recordings already in the can and you change your DAW/interface you might have to mess around to open them and do any edits on a new system. I'm, running an old ProTools Digirack 96i setup on a Win 7 PC and have been tempted to make the jump but I have dozens and dozens of songs with plugins and it would be a major hassle to re-load. Of course most are never re-edited but just in case! I'll run that thing until it won't run anymore! Like me! Ha!

    As long as you don't need anymore inputs and it boots and works and it can do at least 96kHz/24 bits your biggest improvements will be pre-amps, FX, plug-ins, mics, etc. You mix down to CD and MP3's so the original is (usually) always lesser quality then the original. YMMV
    tlite likes this.
  13. That won't be a problem.
    Audacity, Sound Forge, Presonus Audio Batch Converter, Rx7, ....
    All have ways to batch convert directories of files.
  14. Wood and Wire

    Wood and Wire

    Jul 15, 2017

    No, that's an entirely different kettle of fish.

    They're talking about recalling that session, and it being in the same state.
  15. TL;DR
  16. Wood and Wire

    Wood and Wire

    Jul 15, 2017
  17. TOOL460002


    Nov 4, 2004
    Santa Cruz
    Been using this M-Audio FW1814 since 2006:


    Will keep it for old computer (PT/Reason), but new build should be together in a few weeks, so I'm going with something else soonish. Realized I don't need all those inputs cuz drums are expensive to mic.

    Nice M-Audio relic tho! Remember Pro Tools M-Powered? Ya. That was lame. Happy recording!
    And I and tlite like this.
  18. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    I'm still using this, along with Cubase 7:

    TOOL460002 and tlite like this.
  19. SubHuman


    Dec 29, 2005
    Good Old USA
    Yes importing and opening an intact audio recording sessions are 2 different beasts. If it’s a few trax and a few plugins it’s not a big deal but 20 trax with multiple plugins on each track gets messy real quick! I have some sessions with 24 trax and 2 or 3 plugins per track. It can be done but a huge amount of time and setup!
  20. TOOL460002


    Nov 4, 2004
    Santa Cruz
    I've been using these with Cakewalk 2k:


    Joe Nerve likes this.