Audient iD14 MkII: What is it?
The iD audio interfaces from Audient are highly regarded. Offering a more audiophile experience than their compact EVO designs, the iD14 and its smaller sibling (iD4) have just been given a mk2 upgrade.
For the iD14, this means better dynamic range, improved signal-to-noise ratio, more connectivity and an improved headphone output. Also rather significantly, the iD14 has become exclusively bus powered (its predecessor used an external PSU).
To achieve this and also facilitate the improved performance, the iD14 requires a USB 3.0 connection as this can provide more power. The unit can power on using a USB 2.0 connection, but this is not officially supported and would likely be unstable in use.
The iD14 has the latest USB-C type port and can also be connected to and powered by the latest USB-C equipped iPad Pro. For older iOS devices you’ll need the Camera Connection Kit and a PSU.
Audient iD14 MkII: Performance and verdict
The iD14 is a 10-in 6-out, 24-bit 96kHz interface. It has two rear-mounted mic/line inputs, one front-mounted instrument input (alas this is shared with mic/line input 1) and two pairs of balanced outputs. So, with the extra pair of outputs, this represents an improvement on its predecessor.
As before, there’s an optical digital input for stereo S/PDIF or 8-channel ADAT, and this bumps up the input count to 10. In addition to the instrument input, the front edge includes 1/4” and 1/8” headphone outputs. Each provides an identical feed and can be used at the same time.
On the top panel alongside the two input gains, you have individual phantom power switches and then to the right of the output meters, you have the large push button Volume encoder and three buttons – loudspeaker, iD and headphones. By selecting their respective buttons, you can set individual levels for headphones and loudspeakers, and the iD button switches the volume knob to encoder mode so you can use it to navigate plugins.
Much like the mk1, the iD button also ties in with Audient’s iD software app. This provides a whole load of extra functionality including minimum latency monitoring, dim levels, input polarity, monitor trims and it’s where you can organise those input and output streams as required.
In terms of mixes you can create one Master Mix, two different Cue mixes (taking advantage of that extra output pair), or even assign one input as a talkback source. It’s highly flexible and one of the better systems I’ve encountered for interface management.
iD14 uses Audient’s established 8024 Class A preamp design and this gives 58dB of gain as well as a further 10dB of digital gain available via the iD app. Sonically the preamps are clean and transparent, exactly what you would want from an interface mic pre. That being said, the JFET instrument input is more colourful and it sounds perfectly fine when it’s driven or when it clips. It’s also worth saying that the improved headphone amp is satisfyingly loud and dynamic.
All told, the iD14 mk2 is an excellent upgrade that is a better unit all round than its predecessor. At £200, it’s fair value but it’s also only £60 more expensive than the iD4. Given the extra features included, if you can spring the extra £60, the iD14 is definitely the one to have.
MusicRadar verdict: A well-equipped, good value interface. Mk2 definitely improves its audiophile capabilities and with USB powering it’s more flexible.
Audient iD14 MkII: The web says
"The Audient ID14 MkII packs a real punch for an interface at this price point. Brilliant sounding microphone and instrument inputs, a transparent monitor path and loads of expandability options all put this interface in a weight class well above its small footprint."
Audient iD14 MkII: Hands-on demos
Audient iD14 MkII: Specifications
- Class A mic preamps
- 1 JFET instrument input
- Instrument input gain range: 40dB
- Mic preamp gain: 58dB
- Main output dynamic range: 125.5dB-A
- Headphone output dynamic range: 125.5dB-A
- Power: Min 0.9mA @ 5V (USB 3.0)
- Size: 173(w) x 120(d) x 62(max h) mm
- Weight: 0.77kg
- CONTACT: Audient