Universal Audio is an iconic name in music gear thanks to devices like the UA 610 preamp and 1176 compressor. However, the gear can be a tad expensive for home studio producers, with the previous base Apollo Solo interface priced at $699. Now, you can get that vintage analog preamp sound starting at $139 with the new Volt line of audio interfaces.
All the Volts offers a vintage Mic Preamp mode with mic/line preamp circuitry emulating the UA 610 console, used over the years by numerous artists (The Doors, MC5, Van Halen, Arcade Fire) to make sounds warmer or add some grit. The two more expensive models, the Volt 276 and Volt 476, also have built-in analog 1176-type compressor circuits and presets for vocals, guitar. etc. The only thing missing is the digital signal processing (DSP) found in higher-end products like the Apollo lineup, though that's to be expected at these price points.
UA isn't the first high-end gear maker to target bedroom producers, as Solid State Logic recently unveiled an affordable line of interfaces. All the Volts come with bundled with a lot of software including Ableton Live Lite, Marshall Plexi and Time & Tone (Softube), Virtual Drummer DEEP and more. They'll be available in late November from "select Universal Audio retailers," starting at $139 for the Volt 1 (1in/2out) and going up to $369 for the Volt 476 (4in/4out).