Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 USB Audio Interface


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With features like eight Focusrite mic preamps and USB 2.0, at a great price, you can't go wrong with the Scarlett 18i20.

The 18i20 is the latest in the company’s new generation of multi-channel USB-based audio interfaces, featuring eight award-winning Focusrite microphone preamplifiers, designed specifically for the computer interface environment, delivering legendary Focusrite sound quality.

Focusrite’s mic preamps are found in the world’s top studios and give the 18i20 an unequalled level of performance, with low noise, minimal distortion and enormous dynamic range. The Scarlett preamps offer exceptional headroom, and two front-panel inputs also offer 10dB pad buttons to handle the highest-level inputs without distortion.

Comprehensive inputs/outputs
With 18 inputs and 20 outputs, Scarlett 18i20 includes enough I/O to handle the vast majority of day-to-day studio tasks at maximum quality, with maximum flexibility. Scarlett 18i20 features six combo XLR/jack mic/line inputs plus two front-panel XLR/jack mic/line/instrument inputs with 10dB pad buttons, 10 analogue line outputs, two independent headphone outputs on the front panel, and ADAT and S/PDIF digital I/O, plus MIDI I/O and Word Clock out for digital synchronisation when required.

The ADAT interface can be used to bring in digital sources or to add extra preamps such as Focusrite’s OctoPre Mk II, bringing the mic pre complement to 16 channels, ideal for recording a complete band and minimising overdubs.

Class leading digital conversion
This prodigious I/O capability is backed by Focusrite’s class-leading precision digital conversion technology at sample rates up to 96 kHz, 24-bit, to ensure that you get the very highest quality into and out of your audio software – all major DAWs are supported.

High channel count and Focusrite quality – now on USB 2.0 and iOS
Scarlett 18i20 is the USB complement of the tried and tested Saffire PRO 40 Firewire interface. Suitable for Windows, Mac and even iOS (with the Camera Connection Kit*) platforms, Scarlett 18i20’s USB 2.0 connection suits almost any computer, helping you build a setup in which external storage and audio interfaces do not have to share the same computer bus (recommended for the best performance) – if you have Firewire drives, for example, a USB audio interface is the best choice.

Eight high-quality award-winning Focusrite preamps
Scarlett 18i20 is the best sounding interface in its class. Focusrite’s unparalleled reputation for audio excellence forms the foundation of this new interface, with eight award-winning Focusrite preamps.

High-quality 24-bit/96kHz USB 2.0 interface compatible with Mac, Windows and iOS
Features high quality A-D / D-A at up to 96kHz, 24bit. Pristine audio quality and rock-solid synchronisation are guaranteed on Mac and Windows as well as driver-free operation on the iOS platform.

18 inputs & 20 outputs
Scarlett 18i20 boasts an extensive range of analogue and digital I/O capabilities including ADAT I/O which can enable an additional eight inputs and outputs.

Dual independent headphone buses
Give two artists independent, fully-customised monitor mixes – each with an independent front-panel level control.

Scarlett MixControl ultra-low-latency DSP mixer/router
Maximising routing flexibility and intuitive one-click set-up solutions, Scarlett MixControl provides an 18 x 8 DSP mixer with powerful routing and monitoring capabilities.

Unmatched routing flexibility
Scarlett 18i20 is the most flexible interface in its class, enabling you to intuitively adapt it immediately to the needs of any recording session. Route any input signal or DAW output, or a mix of both, to any output.

Now includes 3 Softube audio plug-ins!
TSAR-1R: Add space, depth and width to your sound—TSAR-1R is a reverb plug-in with world class sound and extreme ease of use. With a single slider, you can take TSAR-1R from realistic and three-dimensional rooms to dramatic and dreamlike halls.

Tube Delay: A tasty echo effect that can go from clean to rude by overdriving its three modeled tube stages. Create anything from realistic room echoes to rockabilly style slapbacks—or take it all the way into dub reggae echo madness.

Saturation Knob: Add grit and warmth to any sound source with this modeled output distortion unit. Use it to fatten up bass lines, add some harmonics and shimmer to vocals, or simply destroy your drum loop. Simply turn up the knob to add saturation, and use the three-position switch to alter the distortion character.

Includes Red 2 & Red 3 Plug-in Suite w/64-bit AAX, AU & VST compatibility
These are the first Focusrite plug-ins to include AAX support, making them compatible with Pro Tools 10 and above.   The Red 2 & Red 3 plug-ins are accurate models of Focusrite’s classic Red 2 EQ and Red 3 Compressor hardware. Coveted by producers and engineers for their exceptional clarity and versatility, the original units are prized fixtures in professional recording studios the world over.

Now, the Red 2 & Red 3 Plug-in Suite (AAX/AU/VST) lets you exploit the famous natural sound of the originals, conveniently from within your audio software.

The plug-ins faithfully reproduce the sonic qualities of the hardware. The Red 2 equalizer is a sweet sounding 6-band design, with high/low pass filters, high/low frequency shelves, as well as fully parametric low-mid and high-mid frequency bands. The Red 3 hardware is a VCA compressor design, excellent for natural sounding dynamic control of drums, bass, vocals, and acoustic instruments.

MORE Comprehensive bundles of included software
Comes with Ableton Live Lite – ground-breaking production and performance software, Scarlett Plug-in Suite – EQ, compression, gating and reverb, Novation Bass Station - software model of the classic Novation analogue mono-synth, and 1GB of Loopmasters samples.

Things You Will Get:

  • Scarlett 18i20 Audio Interface
  • Scarlett Plug-in Suite
  • Ableton Live Lite Recording Software
  • Red 2 & Red 3 Plug-in Suite
  • 3 Softube Audio plug-ins
  • Owners' Manual


by PowerReviews
FocusriteScarlett 18i20 USB-2 Audio Interface

(based on 2 reviews)

Reviewed by 2 customers

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Killer interface!


from Indianapolis, IN

About Me Professional Musician

Staff Reviewer


  • Compact
  • Easy To Use
  • Excellent Sound
  • Low Distortion
  • Powerful
  • Versatile


    Best Uses

    • Amateur Recording
    • Events
    • Home Studio
    • Performances
    • Professional Recording

    Comments about Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 USB-2 Audio Interface:

    The 18i20 is my go to 8 input interface hands down. I've used them not only as a dedicated interface but as a preamp as well. This is one of my favorites for the money, you really cant beat the preamp quality as well as the visual metering on the front of the interface as well. definitely an awesome piece.
    This is a real hands on product review from Andy@ Sam Ash Indianapolis

    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)


    Top Entry Level Interface!!!


    from NC

    About Me Professional Musician


    • Easy To Use
    • Excellent Sound
    • Versatile


      Best Uses

      • Home Studio
      • Professional Recording

      Comments about Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 USB-2 Audio Interface:

      I switch to this from a Motu Ultralite Mk3 Hybrid because I was not happy with the preamps, conversion, and not enough I/O. This is the top entry level audio interface you can buy in the $600 and under price range. You get the ability to expand it with the included ADAT, Word clock, and Spdif options. You can add a Octo-Pre for an additional 8 channels which gives you 16 channels of mic inputs. There is room for outboard pres and other gear you have too. Now the sound quality is awesome for what you get. If you like a nice rounded low end and tight detailed mids, and tight high end then this is the right interface and preamp option for you. You won't have to worry about the preamps sounding thin in this unit cause they are FULL in a good way. The AD/DA conversion in this unit is better than ANY lower end interface on the market and will rival mid range interfaces and IMHO better than what I was getting in the Motu. The plugin software that you have to download is really nice especially the compressor! The drivers are very solid, just install them and forget it. I have not had one blue screen of death since I got mine in April. Overall, this is the best you can get around $600 or less with all the options that you get. I almost forgot the two headphone outputs which is a plus! I would say if you are looking at this unit stop now and go BUY it cause it is worth at least $200 more than what it is selling for.

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      Interface Type USB 2.0
      Mic Preamps 8
      Audio Resolution 24-bit/96kHz
      Analog Inputs Mic/Line XLR Combi x 8
      Analog Outputs Line TRS x 8, Monitor TRS x 2, Headphone TRS Stereo x 2
      Digital Inputs 10
      Digital Outputs 10
      Built-in DSP Yes
      S/PDIF I/O Yes
      ADAT I/O Yes
      Optical I/O Yes
      AES/EBU I/O No
      Wordclock Yes
      Bus Powered No
      MIDI I/O Yes
      Ethernet Cat5 No
      Phantom Power Yes
      Weight 7.5 lbs.
      Dimensions 18.98"W x 1.77"H x 10.43"D
      Series Scarlett
      Model 18i20

      Scarlett 18i20 User Guide

      Warranty Info:

      The manufacturer's warranty covers parts for one year and labor for one year from date of purchase. The warranty excludes damage from misuse, abuse, and contains other exclusions.