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Rating and Reviews: E-MU 0404 USB Interface

Record your music easily and professionally with the E-MU 0404 MIDI audio interface.

User Ratings
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Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
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"High quality but not in every way!" submitted April 5, 2009

By a customer from home.nl
Overall
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Features
Ease of Use
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Value
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Musical Background: Recording Hobbyist
Music Style: All kinds of recordings and styles
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Sound: This device records in a scientific way. There is no coloring to the sound. Most devices sound a lot warmer than the Emu 0404, so dont't be surprised by that. It's not a bad thing to have a raw recording without any character. You do have to warm it up yourself if you like such sounds. Allmost no noise, I never found devices without such a low noise level. The sound is fantastic with mikes, but the device is EXTREMELY difficult to adjust when you want to prevent distortion. Especially with line and guitar recording. The potmeters are connected to electronics that mess with the value. Over a certain point, amplification is boosted beyond control, no matter how carefull you turn the knobs. Good headphone port quality. Never heard clearer playback of recordings, and I work at a TV station where they use pro stuff. Feature: You have zero latency monitoring. This is it's main value along with the low noise AD and DA converters. It does work very well with powerfull computers. My 2008 PC dual core notebook, has some stutters when playing or recording but most of the time the stutter is not in the recorded file, it's just a playback problem. However, use a powerfull PC! It helps a lot. XLR in is nice to have, even the line jacks are balanced if you want to. S/PDIF is there but I have not used it yet. It seems S/PDIF out is not always available! Phantom power, which works. Has MIDI in and out but never tested it yet. The guitar input is crap. This is no real Hi-Z input! It should be done with a switch because you really need to change the impedance of the input for guitars. Emu claims it can be done with the stageless potmeters but forget it. Even with a phantom powered DI box, guitars still don't sound great. No high frequencies... You have sample frequencies up to 192kHz but not with Mac and S/PDIF also stops at 96kHz. This does not matter, it's over the top. For normal music stuff I use 48kHz at 24 bit. You can go to 32 bit. You can't do field recordings because it needs EXTERNAL 5 volt power. You could make a battery thing, but that won't last long because I feel a bit of heat which means quite some power use. Ease of Use: You must know a thing or two about the system menu of your PC configuration screen and how to adjust sound cards. If not, you'll need a nerd. The software is outdated but still very useable. Cubase LE works fine but you really need to read a lot about it. Wake the card up in the VST section and connect it to channels on the timeline or mixer. It took me one day to find that out but I'm no musician at all. The Amplitube software did not work but they gave me a free new product which works fine. It's not that great but good enough for what I payed for the entire set. I never tested the other software, that comes with it. Proteus looks like something nice but it's only a guess. Quality: I love-hate it. As said the converters and inputs are very high quality without any noise. If you hear noise, it's your gear. The adjustment of the recordings however, is very problematic. The knobs are too rough and the inputs too sensitive for distortion. The LED meters are far too rough, use your PC. I'm a very precise person, so don't think it's me. The guitar option is total crap. No real Hi-Z The house is made of flimsy plastic with flimsy knobs, but if you do not let your childeren operate it, it will last. The soft clipping option does NOT work. It's creates instant Jimi Hendrix distortion. I don't understand how it's design could have left the lab like this. The little knobs to lift ground level are also b*llsh*t. When I had a groundloop noise, those switches just turned the sound into maximum power 60Hz humm. Value: 200 euro is too much regarding the flaws it has. It would be worth 400 euro's if the distortion and the guitarport were fixed! And I would have payed for that! Manufacturer Support: The support reacts within the day but they can't do anything about the stupid design flaws anymore ofcourse. The Wow Factor: I had a good nerdy appeal to it, but it does not completely do what is says. It's a photo model with false teeth and a wig. Overall: There is no good USB audio device. Believe me. All others have loads of noise and considerably worse microphone inputs. The Emu is the only one without these sound problems and it is the only one with zero latency. Tascam has no zero latency and clicks with guitars, Line6 devices have bad mike inputs, Edirol stutters all the time etc. etc. I'll have to live with the impossible recordlevel knobs and I'll have to build or buy a decent guitar input, with real impedance adjustment. Even a DI box did not give me what I wanted.
99 of 109 people (90.83%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Technically good,but awful support from EMU/Creative." submitted August 25, 2012

By Stavros D
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Music Style: I bought this mostly to record quality vocals for adding voice to some videos I make.
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Overall: I bought this machine a few years ago thinking it was a good bang for the buck, but I was wrong. No, it doesn't have any technical issues, it's solid and it sounds good, but the support (what support?) of Creative is rubbish. The interface was released with a cd featuring drivers for Windows XP, and it took them 3 years to release the Windows Vista driver. Then they released a Windows 7 'beta' driver, but they never released the true Windows 7 browser because a year after the Windows 7 beta drivers they stopped supporting this product. In fact they've gone so far as to completely remove the drivers from their site, meaning you can't find drivers for this interface any more. I searched for hours on Google, I even searched on Torrents but there is nowhere you can get drivers for it now, so the hardware its practically useless to me as I can't use it anymore. Without the appropriate drivers, the machine can't do absolutely anything, not even play the basic sounds of Windows. If you loose your driver cd or your version of Windows is anything else than XP, you are screwed.
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E-MU 0404 USB Interface Customer Review submitted November 21, 2006

Overall
Sound
Features
The Wow Factor
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Sound: just look at the specs. Feature: good enough. Ease of Use: pretty straight forward. Quality: it's plastic. Value: 113db SNR for this price? By far the best audio I/O under $600! Manufacturer Support: no problems yet. Overall: This product has made mixing a lot easier. I usually don't have to worry about the noise floor anymore.
21 of 25 people (84%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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E-MU 0404 USB Interface Customer Review submitted July 21, 2009

Overall
Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
Manufacturer Support
The Wow Factor
Music Style: hip hop r&b soul instrumental mashups
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Sound: 24bit 192k, pthd converters!!!!!! this sounds great!!! i had a mobile pre 1st and when i connected this one the sound quality blew me away!!!!! Feature: Two clean preamps, digital i/o midi i/o direct monitoring no 4x4 interface touches this in this price range Ease of Use: pretty simple to use but having a problem setting it up with aLL the devices (windows media i tunes etc. Quality: built great, cant complain Value: the best thing i brought for my home studio this year!!!!!!!!!!!! Overall: this is a great interface if you are not using pt and you want great sound
4 of 6 people (66.67%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Highly Recommended" submitted June 28, 2007

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Musical Background: active musician/composer
Music Style: pop, rock, dance
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Sound: It's very quiet and has very accurate and pristine sound. Feature: Not a lot of features, but what it does it does very well. Especially considering the price. Favorite features are the soft limiters, the good metering, and the analog volume control. Ease of Use: Everything is on the panel so it's very easy. Quality: Built well and looks nice. Value: Very good value for money Manufacturer Support: Haven't used so don't know. The Wow Factor: I couldn't find any other product on USB that has this kind of quality for the price. Overall: If only this could be bus powered i'd give it a 10.
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"e-mu 0404 usb 2.0" submitted June 30, 2012

By w pasman
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Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
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The Wow Factor
Musical Background: piano. Using quality audio equipment for many years.
Music Style: classic, jazz, pop, ragtime
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Overall: I use this with OSX10.6 and Audacity. I am extremely picky, and I'm recording classic piano. it all works great. Low noise, good sound. Yes the volume adjustment is hyper sensitive, and you need to make a few test recordings after each adjustment to see if the minute changes that you made worked out as expected. But the result is worth it, and for the price I can spend a bit more time on adjusting the thing. I can hear very little noise, I guess it's in the -110dB range, and it's probably more from my mics than from the 0404. The headphone output gives me some problems, playback often results in loud noise instead of the expected music. If it works it sounds very good.I'm not sure if this model is still actively supported by creative.
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"Good value for the money" submitted February 23, 2007

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Musical Background: hobbyist
Music Style: jazz/rock
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Sound: Crisp and clear - I use it for acoustic guitar. Very good considering the price, i guess Feature: Direct monitoring could be better but is ok - the level button comes full circle, which is annoying
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"Compare it to the others and you'll see" submitted December 22, 2006

Overall
Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
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The Wow Factor
Musical Background: Hobbyist
Music Style: A little bit of everything
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Sound: Top notch specs and you can hear it. Feature: Feature packed. Wish they included the DSP FX like in the PCI version but this is way easier to use and has pres, headphone and is USB2 so I won't take any points off. Ease of Use: Lots of knobs, that's the way to do it. Quality: Solid build and looks good. Value: After using it, it definitely feels like a steal. Manufacturer Support: EMU support is great. Never used their official support but they are on many forums helping and answering questions which is something you don't see everyday. The Wow Factor: Had to have it after having the PCI version which i'll keep for the effects. Overall: Would buy this again without hesitation.
11 of 15 people (73.33%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"It's definitely not the best interface out there" submitted December 30, 2009

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Sound
Features
Ease of Use
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Musical Background: Active Musician
Music Style: alternative, rock, pop
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Sound: I think I got a lemon as other people like the sound to this. For me it produces alot of harshness in the upper frequencies on recordings and playback. It isn't for recording guitar at all. Also it kills the punchiness on bass instruments. It does produce low noise but the tradeoff isnt worth it. Feature: The output Midi on mine doesnt work at all. The gain nobs are unstable, so turning it up just alittle causes the level to jump up way too much. Ease of Use: It's easy to hook up but every so often the Cubase LE that came with it crashes. The drivers do seem outdated Quality: It's plastic but most interfaces are. Gain nobs could of be made better though. I like that it uses its own power source and not the comps. It doesn't produce alot of lag atleast. Value: Not worth the price, atleast not the one I got. The Wow Factor: After buying it I dont want it Overall: I will be looking to buy a much better interface
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"Waste of time" submitted June 27, 2007

Overall
Sound
Features
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Quality
Value
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The Wow Factor
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Sound: More crackling than other units at moderate input levels. Feature: built in soft limiter is useful. The hi/low impedance inputs either get confused with some guitars, or do not bypass the mic preamps. so if you're looking to record guitar, it often sounds muddy. Ease of Use: Easy to use, but only because there's not a lot of options Quality: I went through two units, each one working fine for about a week before one of the inputs failed. Value: If your unit keeps working it's a good value, but I'd suggest something different if you want to record guitar. Manufacturer Support: Fast response, but support is intended to help get it working, and have no actual knowledge of recording. Overall: This product wasted a month of my time
1 of 7 people (14.29%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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E-MU 0404 USB Interface Customer Review submitted March 21, 2007

By a customer from poczta.fm
Overall
Sound
Features
Quality
Value
Manufacturer Support
The Wow Factor
Musical Background: recording engineer
Music Style: electronica, minimal
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Sound: Can't get good sound with ASIO driver, cracking, noise no sound at all, tryed with all major ASIO synthesizers Absynth, Massive, Reaktor, buffer size set up to 500ms, no good result, There is no update driver on the Emu website Feature: 4in/ 4 out I found 2/2 I tryed with Behringer ECM8000 measure mic, plenty of noise Ease of Use: There is nothing difficult here, in fact you don't need a manual, will be better if they will something, for example if your ASIO driver doesn't work Quality: I own als PCI 0202, it was realy incredible good, USB 0404 is incredibly bad Manufacturer Support: You get some manuals, but no updates for drivers Overall: If I would get a good working ASIO driver, thus substantial element of the system, I would be very satisfied with this product, so I keep and I wait
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