Scarlett Third Gen Or Clarett?
Todd Simpson
Jul 19 2020, 08:35 AM
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Posts: 20.784
Joined: 23-December 09
From: Atlanta, Georgia, USA


The good folks at FOCUSRITE have blessed us with many fine products of late. To wit, we have a conundrum. They have just released the THIRD GENERATION SCARLETT and the CURENT GENERATION CLARRET. The question then is, which one to buy?

The answer really depends on your budget and preferences. Let’s take a look.

First off, FOCUSRITE have been making really great gear for decades. They make great full size consoles as well, but thankfully, they also make audio interfaces that the rest of us can afford, like the SCARLETT and CLARETT.

WHAT’S THE SAME on the THIRD GEN 4i4 and CURRENT GEN CLARETT 2 PRE? (These are the two units with a very similar feature set and they even look a bit alike)


BOTH are ‘Bus Powered” ! via USB, so no more searching for a wall wart.
BOTH have two combo jack inputs (xlr and guitar jack),
BOTH have headphone output jacks on the front panel
BOTH have headphone volume control on the front panel
BOTH [/b]have the “AIR” mode, which was recently added to the SCARLETT. This is a great feature that adds a bit of space and presence. It’s what made the CLARETT so cool, and it’s a welcome addition on the Third Gen SCARLETT

WHATS NOT!!! THE SAME?

The CLARETT has two 48 volt switches on the front panel so you can phantom power your mics that need it. The Scarlett has only one switch for thisi so both inputs get it.

The CLARETT has far superior microphone preamps than the SCARLETT. It’s just that simple. We are taking better detail, more headroom, higher quality sound on the SCARLETT. It’s more expensive. It has better Preamps, yes, it will sound a pinch better on input no matter how you slice it.

The CLARETT has a BETTER version of the “AIR” feature. As the CLARETT has more sophisticated preamps in general and can change the impedance of the input on the fly to maximize the impact of the “AIR” button.

The CLARETT also has a better software bundle. It should. It costs more. So you get a few plugins that are NOT part of the cheaper bundle. The main thing you get is the BRAINWORX FOCUSRITE SC. This is basically a channel strip from a focusrite console that would cost more than your car.


So which one is right for you? Basically, it comes down to budget. Both units are really quite good. One is a bit better but you have to decide if you want to spend that money on better preamps ior on something else. If you are just getting going with your home studio, SCARLETT has a combo bundle that includes everything you’ll need to get started recording in your home. It’s got a great mic, great headphones, the SCARLETT and it’s plugin bundle.

So let’s talk MONEY.

You can pick up a new Third Gen Scarlett 2i2 for about $160

You can pick up the Scarlett 2i2 “Bundle” with Microphone and Headphones and a mic cable for about $270

You can dig deep and pick up the CLARETT 2 Pre for about $440.

I went with the THIRD GEN SCARLETT 2i2 and I love that thing. The huge jump in price just for better preamps when I mostly record electric guitar just seemed to high. But that’s just mee, some folks who are recording a lot of vocals and acoustic guitars, it could be worth it.

WHICH ONE FOR YOU!?

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This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Jul 19 2020, 08:39 AM
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Phil66
Jul 19 2020, 06:17 PM
Learning Apprentice Player
Posts: 7.622
Joined: 5-July 14
From: The Black Country, England
Scarlett for me, as you know I love them and have two and I might, just might, change my 2nd gen 18i8 for a 3rd gen, just for the way cooler halos cool.gif cool.gif even though I probably only need the Solo even at home I'll keep that as my traveller wink.gif

Please talk me out of it biggrin.gif

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This post has been edited by Phil66: Jul 19 2020, 06:18 PM


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Todd Simpson
Jul 20 2020, 03:10 AM
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Posts: 20.784
Joined: 23-December 09
From: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Worth it for the cooler halos smile.gif The Third Gen Scarlett having the AIR button is very nice . For the cost of any of the third Gen Units, it's hard to say no. They are just top notch units for not much money. Love the BUSS POWERED feature as well. I loved the little solo and would have kept it but for needing a second XLR input. As a portable unit, the SOLO is perfect and it's quite small which is also handy.

QUOTE (Phil66 @ Jul 19 2020, 01:17 PM) *
Scarlett for me, as you know I love them and have two and I might, just might, change my 2nd gen 18i8 for a 3rd gen, just for the way cooler halos cool.gif cool.gif even though I probably only need the Solo even at home I'll keep that as my traveller wink.gif

Please talk me out of it biggrin.gif

You are at GuitarMasterClass.net


Don't miss today's free lick. Plus all our lessons are packed with free content!

Don't miss today's free blues, jazz & country licks. Plus all our lessons are packed with free content!
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