The best new microphones, audio interfaces and mixers coming out in 2024

Gear Expo interfaces
(Image credit: IK Multimedia)

GEAR EXPO 2024: Microphones, audio interfaces and mixers are your studio signal chain essentials. Put simply, these are the items that enable you to record, mix and link up to your computer, and these days many such devices can handle multiple tasks.

In this round-up we have microphones that double as interfaces, and audio interfaces that double as mixers, so while they might look like totally different pieces of equipment on paper, there's a lot of crossover between them. And if you get the right item for your studio, you could be ticking off a list of must-have practical use cases.

There's everything here, from simple mic/interfaces to full-on surround sound interfaces designed for multiple speaker setups. So here are the interfaces, mixers and mics we're gearing up for this year…

MoTU 828


(Image credit: MoTU)

Are we really at a point now when we get all nostalgic over audio interfaces? Well, that's how it feels when we discuss a product like MoTU's 828, because the original interface came out over 20 years ago! So if there was such an interface that could be described as 'vintage', this could be it. Well, aside from the fact that it has just been completely overhauled, that is…

The all-new 828 is a complete redesign of the 1U rack-mount audio interface, now compatible with macOS, Windows and iOS. The interface can now handle a total of 60 channels of I/O and 24-channel mixing, and features onboard effects including reverb, 4-band EQ and compression.


(Image credit: MoTU)

The new 828 offers a 3.9-inch full-colour LCD display, two front-panel combo mic/line/hi-Z inputs, and two headphone outputs. Around the back you get eight TRS analogue ins and outs, separate main outs on XLR jacks, two banks of 8-channel ADAT optical I/O, stereo RCA S/PDIF digital I/O plus MIDI In/Out jacks.

All settings can be controlled remotely from a computer or iOS device running the CueMix 5 app. Naturally, loopback is present and correct for podcasters – in fact the 828 boasts two such channels, so users can easily route computer output back to the computer, and mix it back live with anything coming in on the inputs. 

There's a decent software bundle, too: the CueMix 5 app for your Mac, PC or iOS device, MOTU Performer Lite and Ableton Live Lite workstation software, plus over 6GB of free loops, samples and one-shot samples.

The all-new 828 is shipping now priced at $995. There's more info at the MoTU website

IK Multimedia iRig Stream Mic USB

iRig Stream Mic USB is, according to IK Multimedia, a more accessible version of its iRig Stream Mic Pro, a combi mic and stereo audio interface. iRig Stream Mic USB still offers both interfacing and a microphone, but is a more streamlined affair, designed for Mac, PC, iPad and iPhone 15 users. 

The microphone part of the package is a condenser with a unidirectional, cardioid pattern, so aimed directly at speakers or singers, filtering out any background noise. It also has a selectable high-pass filter to get rid of any low-end rumble.

The interfacing part of iRig Stream Mic USB comes by way of the 3.5-mm audio input on the microphone. It has a monitoring mix control so you can blend the direct or recorded audio via the headphone output. It can take an input from media players, keyboards, mixers, turntables, soundboards and more.

iRig Stream Mic USB

(Image credit: IK Multimedia)

iRig Stream Mic USB also has a Loopback feature so audio – backing tracks, sound effects or a song – from a Mac/PC can be mixed into any recording or stream. 

iRig Stream Mic USB is powered by its host device – so doesn't require external power – and also comes bundled with several software titles including iRig Recorder 3 LE (iPhone/iPad/Android), an audio and video recording app; and aMixBox CS (iPad) and MixBox SE (Mac/PC), a suite of effects including dynamics, EQ, and reverb.

iRig Stream Mic USB is available now for $/€99.99 plus tax, and includes a table stand and USB-C cable for Mac, PC, iPad and iPhone 15. 

Get more information from the IK Multimedia website.

Mackie ProFXv3+

This is a group of three mixers adding to Mackie's existing ProFXv3 series. Each model has three recording modes – Standard, Loop Back and Interface. The first captures a standard mix through the mixer to your computer, allowing you to add included effects along the way, and is great for live performances or podcasts. 

Loop Back allows you to add computer audio into the mix, so is great for video gaming, streams or any kind of music or dialogue played over backing tracks. Finally, Interface mode is designed to offer just a couple of high quality, non-effected tracks for recording instruments or vocals – just like a standard audio interface, then. 

Mackie ProFXv3+

(Image credit: Mackie)

There's also a dedicated Bluetooth channel, 12 preset GigFX+ effects all visualised on a colour LCD screen, and Onyx preamps on every channel.

There are three mixers in the series, all with the above features but with 6-, 10- and 12-channel input configurations. They are priced at $249.99, £329.99 and $419.99 respectively. Get more information from the Mackie website.

Audient ORIA


(Image credit: Audient)

ORIA is Audient's new audio interface and monitor controller designed for multi-speaker setups; that's everything from stereo to 9.1.6 setups "and everything in between". 

As such the interface provides 16 outputs (via TRS or AES), two switched stereo outputs, two headphone outputs, and BNC Word Clock in and out. It also features two Audient Console mic preamps, 16 ADAT inputs, and an optional 16 input AoIP Dante card aimed at large studio complexes and education facilities.


(Image credit: Audient)

As well as being a USB-C audio interface, ORIA has been designed as a monitor controller via its ADAT Inputs or the Optional Dante Card. The unit includes Advanced Speaker Processing to help set up and callibrate different speaker configurations in different rooms. You can create up to 32 of these using the 8-band EQ, Speaker Delay, Trim and Bass Management tools. Overall the system is aiming to ensure that rooms stay calibrated when monitoring in different formats such as stereo, 5.1 or Dolby Atmos.

Audient has also partnered with Sonarworks to help with this process and make sure that measurement and calibration can be done in under an hour. And once the room is calibrated, ORIA offers full control over the stereo, surround or Dolby Atmos setup by way of its onboard software or an iPad Remote app.

As you might expect, with such a wide range of speaker applications, ORIA might be overkill for a small setup and has a price to suggest that, too. It will retail for £2,520/€2,885/$2,625, and the optional Dante Card is £600/€685/$625.

Get more info from the Audient website.  

Audio-Technica AT2040USB

The Audio-Technica AT2040USB is a low-cost dynamic microphone designed for speech applications like podcasting, streaming, vlogging, and voiceover work. The mic is the USB version of Audio-Technica’s AT2040, so simply swaps the XLR connection for USB. You can therefore connect it directly to a laptop or tablet without needing an extra mixer or audio interface

The AT2040USB has a hypercardioid pickup pattern, so is great for rejecting background noise because you are basically just getting whatever you point it at. The mic's build quality is good, too, with its black metal chassis offering plenty of protection against knocks. 

Audio-Technica AT2040USB

(Image credit: Audio-Technica)

On the bottom of the mic, there is a slider volume control for the headphone out, and another control for blending computer and mic audio through headphones. A small switch activates a low-cut filter and a further button on the mic's body is for muting and unmuting your voice. 

In our full review, we found the mic to be great at dealing with background noise, and the low cut filter and hypercardioid pickup make for a great combination for speech recording. The mic adds both clarity and weight to recordings and is a seriously impressive option for the money, and an easy recommendation for streaming, vlogging or podcasting.

The Audio-Technica AT2040USB costs £129/$149. Read our review here or get more information at the Audio-Technica website

sE Electronics Neom

Last up we have another USM contender in the form of the sE Electronics Neom, a condenser mic with a cardioid pickup pattern and very decent set of technical specifications. Neom is designed as a versatile budget USB mic, aimed at vocal recordists and those wanting to capture acoustic instruments including pianos, percussion and guitars.

You get onboard gain, mic level and playback level controls and, in an amusing nod to Spinal Tap, the mic gain does indeed go up to 11. There is a single 3.5mm connection for headphone monitoring, and a USB-C connection, and the package is complete with a metal stand and connectors for hooking up to a boom arm or traditional mic stand

sE Electronics Neom USB review

(Image credit: Chris Corfield)

We tested Neom by recording a variety of instruments like a Fender Jazz bass through a small solid-state combo amp, a kalimba and a dreadnought acoustic guitar and got very good results across the board. Add to the fact that it works without the need for a USB audio interface and we'd happily take the mic anywhere and use it as a quick and simple recording solution.

Neom also does a great job of capturing the spoken word, so is a good choice for podcasters, voiceover artists, vloggers and streamers. sE has focused on delivering both quality and compatibility, all while keeping the price keen.

The the sE Electronics Neom costs  £164 / €189 / $179 and you can read our full review here. There's more information abut the microphone at the sE Electronics website

Looking for more great new gear? Get all our round-ups, news, features, tutorials, tips and more at our Gear Expo hub page.

Andy Jones

Andy has been writing about music production and technology for 30 years having started out on Music Technology magazine back in 1992. He has edited the magazines Future Music, Keyboard Review, MusicTech and Computer Music, which he helped launch back in 1998. He owns way too many synthesizers.

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