Best Sound Modules Review in 2022
Sound Modules, you may or may not be familiar with this instrument. It’s an electrical musical instrument that produces sound by connecting to devices such as a MIDI controller. Some devices with a human-playable interface such as a MIDI controller may not produce sound on its own and require a tool like a sound module. So, all this information might be confusing for you, and choosing the best one among all the available sound modules might be much more complicated. That’s why we have put together the best 10 sound modules in this list. Check them out!
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Best Sound Modules Review in 2022
10. Roland Sc-88 Sound Modules
It’s a classic sound module of the Roland brand that has many modern features.
With a weight of 5 lbs. 7oz it makes sure to deliver clear sound.
- Headphones input allowing you to connect the external headphone
- 64 different effects to help you create a sound
9. Roland TR-6S Compact Drum Machine
This sound module from Roland TR-6S offers an experience of replacing your drum playing. Its capacity can help you create a drum track featuring the beats on the go experience, especially with the joy of hands-on production. With this model, you will get 6 tracks of advanced drums and other sounds from most of the music history.
- Brand: Roland
- Color: Black
- Item dimension: 12.9 x 8.1 x 4.1 inches
- Weight: 1.1Kg
8. Roland JU-06A Sound Module
This is another model of the sound module from the Roland brand that allows you to play for up to 6 hours with this small one. It is lightweight which allows users to bring it anywhere easily. Its chord memory offers up to 16 features with the sequencer pattern up to 16 as well. There are dual 64 sound patches that enable you to produce the best electronic music experience.
- Brand: Roland:
- Weight: 1kg
- Dimension: 16.02 x 14.45 x 8.27 inches
- Its chord memory and sequencer pattern: 16
7. Behringer Crave Analog Synthesizer
The design of this sound module from the Behringer brand is fantastic. It comes with a yellow color that helps you get that vibe with a ton of music party vibe. Its pure analog signal path is from authentic VCO, VCF, and VCA source design. You can also use its oscillator with pulse and sawtooth wave output for advanced sounds.
- Brand: Behringer
- Color: Acid Yellow
- Style: Crave
- Dimension: 14.96 x 5.51 x 3.54 inches
- Weight: 1.1Kg
6. Behringer Synthesizer
Midiplus sound module is a parabolic synthesizer with its dual 3340 analog oscillators that allow you to produce fat music production. Its pure analog signal path also lets you recreate the classic sound performance featuring your music scene as well.
- Brand: Behringer
- Color: Red
- Dimension: 5.35 x 16.69 x 3.7 inches
- Weight: 2.3Kg or 5 pounds
- Other components include: Paraphonic Analog and Semi-mod
5. MIDIPLUS PianoEngine USB host
You may probably think it is really small but its ability to create the electronic sound is no joke. Its capacity can handle both piano and drum sound for your music creation. It offers a wide range of 128 piano sounds as well as 100 drum songs for your features.
- Brand: Midiplus
- Color: Red
- Hardware interface: USB
- Maximum sample: 48KHz
- Provides 128 piano sounds
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4. PianoBox USB
Its thick design featuring the black color would resemble how fierce it is. Its general MIDI sound module also provides 128 MIDI sounds and full GM implementation. Especially it also features about 9 drum sets and one SFX set as well. It also has a Blue LED display when it is turned on too.
- Color: Black
- It provides 128 general MIDI sounds
- Features with 9 drum sets and one SFX set
- Blue LED Display available
- HI-Z-Guitar input TRS jack 6.3mm available
3. Miditech Pianobox Pro Sound Module
This Pianobox pro is specifically compatible with 128 GM sample sounds. Its design combined with the aluminum cabinet plus the black makes it look powerful. It offers 16 times multitimbral and as well as 128 voices polyphony. There are about 64 high-class piano and other old town synthesizer sounds from E-MU featured as well.
- Brand: Miditech
- Dimension: 6 x 2.3 x 7 inches
- Weight: 0.7Kg or 1.5 pounds
- Connector type: MIDI USB
- Connectivity technology: USB
2. Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 Mk2
This Komplete Audio 6 Mk2 officially can produce up to 192 kHz or 24 bits of sound quality. There are 4 analogs both in and out as well as 2 digital in and out. 2 headphones out and MIDI both in and out inside this sound module model. Anyway, its USB 2.0 bus power does not require other additional power supplies when used.
- Brand: Komplete
- Color: Black
- Audio quality: 192kHz and 24 bit
- Compatible with mics, guitars, synths , etc…
- Specifications: 6 inputs and 6 outputs
1. Moog Mother Analog Synthesizer
With its outstanding quality and some excellent features, Moog Mother Synthesizer has grabbed the top quality on our list. It comes with lots of patch points, allowing you to have abundant options for sound control. So, if you always been a fan of classic Moog tones but didn’t have the budget for it, here’s a good option for you with low prices!
This large black semi-modular synthesizer has an external input to process outside sound sources.
- Aluminum enclosure to keep it secure
- Assignable CV jack allowing to have 16 assignable sources
- 32 patch-points for synthesis complexity
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Hopefully, this article was helpful enough to give you many ideas about the useful features of sound modules. As we analyzed many of them and came up with the list of the top 10 best sound modules, you can pick any of these without any tension. So, whether you are already familiar with this device or heard about it just now! If you think you might need it, grab the best one you find on our list and enjoy it for a long time. Best of luck!
How to Choose the Right Sound Module for Your Setup
Picking the right sound module can be a daunting task. There is a bunch of different input and out configurations, formats, connection types, and many more factors to consider. So, how would you decide which is the best one for you?
If you were struggling to choose a sound module that takes your setup to the next level, we are here for you! Check out this essential guide that will break down everything you should know before making the purchase.
What is a sound module?
A sound module, also called an audio interface, is hardware that links your headphones and other audio gadgets to the computer. Usually, a sound module transforms analog signals into digital audio information – something a computer can process. The digital audio is sent to the computer through some connection (e.g., USB, Thunderbolt, or FireWire).
Interestingly enough, the sound module can also perform the process in reverse, taking digital audio information from the computer and turning it into analog signals that can be heard through the headphones or studio monitors. The majority of sound modules include line-level analog outputs and inputs, one or multiple microphone preamplifiers, as well as digital inputs and outputs like S/PDIF, ADAT (Lightpipe), or AES on some occasions.
Why You Need a Sound Module?
There are quite a few reasons you should switch to a dedicated sound module instead of the computer’s in-built soundcard. Technically speaking, the sound card is a kind of audio interface, but the minimal I/O and limited sound quality make it less suitable for recording. Many sound cards feature a headphone output, consumer-grade stereo line-level input, and sometimes an output.
Radio and electromagnetic interference, excessive latency, and jitter all degrade the audio’s quality as it goes in or out. It’s next to impossible to track a whole drum kit (we won’t even discuss an entire band) with just two channels of input.
Sound cards perform satisfactorily when you have to attach a pair of HiFi speakers and blast back compressed audio, but a sound module is important for the recording and monitoring process.
Choosing the Correct Sound Module for Your Setup
Apart from the computer connectivity factor, which will be discussed later on, no other factor is as crucial in choosing the right sound module as is its I/O configuration. I/O stands for input/output. The type and number of inputs and outputs you require will depend completely on what you wish to record, currently and for the future. The range of said module includes everything and anything between two-channel desktop units to interfaces capable of recording hundreds of channels.
As a singer-songwriter, one might only need one pair of inputs, given they are the right inputs. Most sound modules include more than two or two microphone preamps. If you plan on using condenser microphones, make sure the interface’s preamps are powered up with phantom power. For plugging in a keyboard or guitar straight into the module, make sure the module had instrument-level, also known as “hi-Z” inputs.
Line-level inputs and outputs are ideal for connecting headphone amps, outboard processors, and studio monitors.
Computer Connectivity Options
In a world that’s constantly changing and developing, it’s impossible for a “standard” technology not to go “obsolete” over time. With that being said, there are still some standard audio interface connection types, and those are USB, Thunderbolt, FireWire, and finally, PCIe. Most Mac and PC computers are equipped with USB ports – USB 2 or USB 3. FireWire – 400 or 800 is usually found on Macs.
Both protocols have the same speed on average, which is 480 Mbps. This is fast enough to record a maximum of 64 tracks at once (if the conditions are perfect). Similarly, there are quite a few simple interfaces that still function with USB 1.1. From what you can guess, they are much slower but still manage to record a channel or two.
Due to its low latency and amazingly high speed, Thunderbolt can be considered the new reference standard in the department of connecting sound modules. Thunderbolt 3 is twice as fast as its older cousin, Thunderbolt 2, and eight times as fast as USB 3, supporting cable lengths of a maximum of 100 meters (have to use optical cable) and speeds of 40 Gbps max. The Thunderbolt 3 can be found in the latest Mac devices. A lot of high-end interfaces support Thunderbolt these days.
FireWire holds an advantage over USB in the part where the first has a more consistent data transfer rate. This makes the FireWire a bit more reliable when more than one channel is being recorded at once. One shortcoming still exists – the number of interfaces that use USB is much higher than the number of interfaces that use FireWire, and fewer computers feature any FireWire ports. You may need to install a FireWire card if you work on a PC.
The biggest plus side of a USB is that many interfaces come with USB ports. Since these interfaces are created to function on USB bus power, this is a great way to record on mobile with a laptop.
PCIe can be used with laptop computers are they are inner card-based interface. The benefit to this interface is that you avoid some data conversion processes where bandwidth gets limited or latency is caused. Most PCIe audio interfaces can maintain the high track counts and super-fast speed needed by the studio. So, by nature, they’re pricier than USB or FireWire.
With just the right sound module, you can track a full band! Audio interfaces have come a long way since the first days, and that means you will be able to get much creative. Since these things aren’t exactly cheap, consider investing in the right place, and study up before settling on something.