IK Multimedia launches the iRig USB, a pocket-sized interface for guitar and bass bundled with AmpliTube and TONEX amp and FX modelling software

IK Multimedia has released several guitar audio interfaces over the years but when it comes to size it might just have outdone itself with the launch of the new iRig USB. 

This is pocket-sized interface is as compact and convenient as they come. It arrives bundled with AmpliTube 5 SE and Tonex, allowing players to shape their electric guitar tone with IK Multimedia’s guitar amp and effects modelling software and use it when playing with others, or when simply tracking song ideas as you go.

The iRig USB certainly gives you options, and its controls couldn’t be more simple. There is an oversized Gain dial for adjusting input gain – turn counterclockwise if you see the LED flashing red. There is a button on the side of the unit for selecting FX/Thru modes, allowing you to send a direct processed or unprocessed signal out of the 1/4” amp output. 

This signal can go straight into your amp, or fed through an external pedalboard. And that’s that; you’re good to go, your whole rig is rendered digitally. The 1/4” instrument input is located beside the amp output, and can take a signal from a guitar or bass guitar.

IK Multimedia iRig USB

(Image credit: IK Multimedia)

There is an 1/8” headphones output on the top of the interface for monitoring and a USB-C output for hooking the iRig USB to your host device – laptop/PC, iPhone/tablet or smartphone.

What you then do with the iRig is up to you. It is a quick and easy recording solution for players looking for something to record quickly with. If you bring that and your laptop to a gig you can leave your pedalboard behind and simply cue up your presets digitally, sending the signal direct or through a guitar amp for performance. 

And it could be similarly useful at home. If you’re at home practising you can access all of the processing power of the AmpliTube 5 SE and Tonex modelling software to play around with different sounds, using the headphones output for silent practice, and hooking it up with the apps you use for practice and learning. 

The USB connection means you don’t need any batteries. The host device takes care of that. The AmpliTube and Tonex software can be run as standalone apps or as plugins in your DAW. You can record on mobile devices using Tonex or AmpliTube CS for iPhone and iPad, but just remember for Lightning devices you’ll need the Lightning to USB 3 Camera Adapter (£45, sold separately). 

The iRig USB is available now, priced €69.99. See IK Multimedia for more details.

Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.