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Rating and Reviews: FireStudio Mobile

Portable without sacrificing quality, PreSonus FireStudio Mobile is a 10-input, 6-output FireWire audio interface that can be powered right from your laptop.

User Ratings
Overall
Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
Manufacturer Support
The Wow Factor
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"Win7 Compatible FW AI - Best Bang for the Buck" submitted July 12, 2010

By a customer from gmail.com
Overall
Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
Manufacturer Support
The Wow Factor
Musical Background: Hobbyist
Music Style: Orchestral Film Scores, Pop Music production
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Sound: I'd rate this puppy a 10 but it seems to be very touchy when it comes to buffer size settings, and also seems to have a mind of its own about what the Buffer Size should be set to. This forces me to deal with latency issues now and again, but I'm usually able to tweak it into submission. It sounds every bit as good as my TASCAM FW-1804 did, which is the only thing I can compare it to. Feature: Has what I need - phantom power, numerous inputs, nice preamps, TRS outputs. Ease of Use: The mixer application is little odd, but you'll eventually figure it out. Quality: Reliable, does what it's supposed to, unlike a LOT of the software I use with it. Value: Best bang for the FW AI buck, IMHO. Manufacturer Support: On the few issues I've submitted, PreSonus has been very responsive. The Wow Factor: The size is pretty amazing for what it does. So that's cool Overall: I won't need anything else for a long time.
17 of 18 people (94.44%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Great bang for the buck, but know your Firewire." submitted October 24, 2011

By a customer from cox.net
Overall
Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
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The Wow Factor
Musical Background: Active Musician, Composer
Music Style: Alt./Classic/Country Rock, Classical
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Sound: Only a couple of small issues with this AI. The buffer setting can be tricky to get right - this requires making notes and a little forethought, depending on what phase of a project you're in. There's also definitely a floor of low-level noise on at least the two front-end inputs, which is easily gated out, but is annoying nonetheless. Feature: Has everything a unit of this type should have. Only quibble is with the S/PDIF inputs on the breakout cable. Just not sure how useful those are. A better choice might have been two more un/balanced standard audio inputs. Ease of Use: It can be mightily tricky to get this unit working, depending on what sort of Firewire interface you have. While this is more of a Firewire driver issue than a problem with the unit itself, those unfamiliar with the technology will be totally confused by the Universal Control program's insistence that the unit's "firmware is up-to-date" even when there's no unit connected - or, worse, when there's a unit connected, and it's sync'd to the FW interface, but not actually accessible to the audio system. Quality: SO far so good at well over a year now. Have only used it under controlled conditions. No idea how it'd fare on the road (or why one might need it there). Again, the only complaint is the low-level noise on the front-end inputs. Value: I think this unit is a great value for the price. Manufacturer Support: Mixed bag. My second B-Stock unit shipped w/o a breakout cable. Zzounds, in their typical awesome fashion, got Presonus to ship me one almost immediately, even though the item was listed on "permanent" back order. Presonus will not provide a loaner if an issue (like this noise problem) is clearly their responsibility. I find that off-putting. The Wow Factor: The diminutive size with so much functionality is a huge element, and was a big factor in getting a second (back-up / studio) unit. Overall: While this unit has its flaws like all entry-level equipment. For the price it's an excellent value and will serve one well if one is willing to do some legwork if necessary (e.g., working out Firewire issues).
13 of 15 people (86.67%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"This is what you want." submitted January 19, 2011

By a customer from windstream.net
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Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
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The Wow Factor
Musical Background: Gigging musician
Music Style: Classic rock
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Sound: This product runs through your Firewire interface, through it's chipset, then into your processors. If you don't have compatible chipsets, don't buy a firewire interface. Some older Win XP's and Vistas desk tops have a VIA chipset that will work pretty good although your latency will be a little high, not much. If you have a laptop from the big box store it won't work well, if at all. I went through that learning curve as well. There are companies that make dedicated laptops with stable, low latency, audio chipsets built in (TI) but they are pricey (ADK). An expansion card won't work because it also runs through the factory chipset. Like I said, an older XP is your friend. Just install as much RAM as it will hold and you will get great results with any firewire product. Feature: Only two preamps but they sound great. Ease of Use: Very easy to use. Quality: It's not a boutique oiece but it sounds good. Value: Tops for the price. Manufacturer Support: I had lots of headaches trying to figure out why it wouldn't work with my laptops like the guy above. But I figured out what the problem was, He still hasn't. Presonus tried to help but gave me generic patches to try. Didn't work. It's all in that chipset thing. VIA=good, Texas Instruments=great. The Wow Factor: Sexy, cool, it's a pretty box. Overall: It'd be great to have top notch gear at any price, but really, this is good stuff.
5 of 6 people (83.33%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Looks great on paper. Makes a better paperweight." submitted November 23, 2010

By a customer from gmail.com
Overall
Sound
Features
Ease of Use
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Value
Manufacturer Support
The Wow Factor
Musical Background: Touring Musician
Music Style: Pop/Rock
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Sound: Preamps would sound great if they weren't so horribly noisy. There's also an issue of cross channel bleeding between the preamps and the headphone outputs, making noise even worse, and potentially causing phasing issues. Feature: Looks great on paper. Would theoretically do everything I would need it to, if only it weren't a piece of junk. Ease of Use: The software mixer is a little confusing at first, but works OK once you get used to it. Gain knobs and level meters and phantom power are all self explanatory. Quality: This thing is garbage. Quality control must be nonexistent. The box itself seems pretty sturdy, but the electronics inside it must have been glued together with bubble gum by a blindfolded 6 year old with Parkinson's disease. The S/PDIF channel constantly clicks and pops for no reason whatsoever. The mic preamps are noisy as hell. The channels bleed through each other. The audio randomly stops sometimes for no reason, requiring a reset. Oh, did I mention the drivers are crap too? Sometimes they'll just quit working, and won't work again until you fully reboot your computer. And by sometimes, I mean all the time. Oh, and did I also mention that the list of supported FireWire chipsets is miniscule? And even better, they don't tell you this list until after you buy it and open the manual and go to the troubleshooting section. I went out of my way to buy a new FireWire from this list in hopes of solving some of these issues. Alas, it was for naught. Value: Makes a nice paperweight. Even lights up! I'd pay $15 for something like that. Manufacturer Support: Sent them a technical support ticket about these problems a while back. I have yet to see a response. Support is nonexistent. The Wow Factor: It looks pretty. Especially when the lights are flashing red and blue as a result of sync failure. Overall: Do not buy this garbage.
12 of 17 people (70.59%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"ProTools vs PreSonus" submitted July 1, 2013

By Mauricio Sanchez in Minneapolis, MN
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Sound
Features
Ease of Use
Quality
Value
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Musical Background: Muti-instrumentalist, composer, and self-producer.
Music Style: World Folk
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Overall: Competition won't help another. If you use ProTools, don't buy PreSonus, and vice-verse. The Mobile FireWire is supposed to have all wonderful features (which AVID has for a much higher price) very worth the money, but they just do not work with my Dell Precision M66 and Pro Tools.
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"zZsounds " submitted January 25, 2014

By Mary G in Vancouver, WA
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Musical Background: Husband is a musician
Music Style: Eclectic
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Overall: AWESOME
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