IK Multimedia iRig Pro Vs. Soundcraft Ui16: Head To Head Comparison – READ BEFORE YOU BUY!!

Choosing the right mixer when there are so many on the market these days isn't easy.
Especially when many of them are built for one specific need but being marketed as an all-rounder 🙄
But not to worry, I've got ya!
I have taken a deep dive into two beasts in the audio-mixing game and gone head to head with them: IK Multimedia iRig Pro vs. Soundcraft Ui16.

We're looking at things like:
  • Sound Quality: This is the heart of the matter, right? How each mixer holds up in delivering crisp, clear audio. Are we talking about a mixer that makes your tracks sound like they're live from the garage, or are we hitting studio-quality sound?
  • Ease of Use: Nobody wants to spend hours figuring out which button does what. I’ll break down the user interface of both IK Multimedia iRig Pro and Soundcraft Ui16. Are they plug-and-play easy, or will you need a PhD in mixology to use them?
  • Features and Functions: Ie. What's under the hood? Let's find out what sets them apart.
  • Durability: No matter your reason for buying, you want something that's gonna last, not fall apart after a few light sessions.
  • Price Point: Yep, money talks. When it comes to prices, we need to see which mixer gives us more bang for our buck. Is the higher price of one justified by its features, or is the other a hidden gem at a bargain price?
  • Customer Reviews and Feedback: What's the word on the street? Sometimes real-world use tells a different story than what the sales page says.

IK Multimedia iRig Pro

Unboxing and First Impressions

The IK Multimedia Quattro I/O is a compact yet feature-rich audio interface that stands out in its class. It's impressively lightweight and efficient, making it a versatile choice for musicians and audio engineers alike. When I first unpacked it, its intuitive control surface, reminiscent of other IK Multimedia devices, immediately struck a chord with me.

Recording and Input Quality

Crystal Clear Recordings with Zero Lag

My initial tests involved recording simple tracks into Logic using a microphone and guitar direct line. The input levels were a breeze to set, resulting in crystal clear recordings with no noticeable lag. The device was instantly recognized by Logic, offering seamless integration. The onboard phantom power efficiently powered my condenser mic, though it required some fine-tuning to achieve the perfect level.

Build and Connectivity

Sturdy Design with Versatile Connection Options

The build quality of the Quattro I/O feels durable, and its provision of MIDI in and out, high-end XLR output, and a variety of power options (battery or USB) add to its versatility. Its compatibility with computers and mobile devices is a significant advantage, making it a great choice for both studio and mobile use. The inclusion of all necessary cables and a tripod attachment is a thoughtful addition, enhancing its usability in live settings.

Standalone Mixer Functionality

Limited EQ Controls, but Stellar Sound Output

As a standalone mixer, the Quattro I/O performs admirably. While it lacks EQ controls on the surface, the quality of sound output when paired with external mic preamps or effect pedals is outstanding. This capability makes it a valuable tool for live performances.

Portability and Power Efficiency

Battery Life and Mobile Device Compatibility

The device's portability is enhanced by its ability to run on battery power when used standalone or with mobile devices. While I haven't fully tested the battery life limits, its performance in this mode has been reliable. The quick response from IK Multimedia support regarding a missing serial number/registration card was impressive and speaks volumes about their customer service.

Pros and Cons

Deep Feature Set with Room for Improvement

Pros: The Quattro I/O excels in its compact and lightweight design, making it easy to transport. Its deep feature set, including excellent mic pres, flexible input/output options, and compatibility across devices, sets it apart. Its functionality as a standalone mixer and inclusion of 48-volt phantom power are also noteworthy.
Cons: Despite its many strengths, there are some limitations, particularly for specific uses such as DJ'ing streaming, as some users have reported issues with sound quality and device freezing. Additionally, some users have found difficulties in processing effects on iPads.

Soundcraft Ui16 Remote-Controlled Digital Mixer

I got my hands on the Soundcraft Ui16 Remote-Controlled 16-Input Digital Mixer about a month or two ago, and let me tell you, it's been an interesting ride. This mixer has its highs and lows, and I'm here to give you the full scoop.

The Good: Features and Flexibility

The Ui16 is packed with features that can make any tech-savvy sound person drool. First off, the ability to control it from a tablet or phone is a total game-changer. It makes sound checks a breeze, especially if you're running solo. The mixer comes with a range of inputs and outputs, offering ample flexibility for various setups. The built-in effects, including Lexicon reverbs and dbx dynamics, are top-notch, giving your sound that professional edge.
The mixer's wireless functionality is a big selling point. Although I did encounter some range issues, these were easily fixed with an external router or booster antenna. And hey, the built-in WiFi works decently enough for most situations.

User Experience: A Mixed Bag

Now, the interface… it's HTML-5 based, responsive, and packed with features. But, there's a learning curve, especially if you're new to digital mixers. The navigation can be a bit quirky, often redirecting you to the bootup screen, which can be annoying. And the manual? It's got some errors, so don't rely on it too heavily.

I did try connecting it to various devices. It worked seamlessly with my Android and iOS gadgets, but older computers might struggle. A tablet is definitely the way to go for the best control experience, as phone screens can feel cramped.

Performance and Sound Quality

Sound-wise, the Ui16 delivers. It's quiet, efficient, and the sound quality is impressive for its price range. I've used it in a church setting and for small events, and it's been great in both contexts. It's also surprisingly easy to use once you get past the initial setup.

WiFi Woes and Workarounds

The WiFi issues some users have reported are real. If you're planning to use this mixer actively during a performance, be prepared for potential dropouts. However, if you set your levels and leave them be, like I do, you might not even notice. And yes, investing in a better antenna or positioning the mixer wisely can mitigate these issues.


Overall, the Soundcraft Ui16 is a solid piece of equipment with a few quirks. It's not perfect – the WiFi can be finicky, and the interface has its idiosyncrasies – but the quality and flexibility you get at this price point are hard to beat. If you're willing to tackle a slight learning curve and can handle the occasional WiFi hiccup, this mixer could be a great addition to your audio setup. Just remember, it's more suited for scenarios where constant tweaking isn't necessary.

Head 2 Head: IK Multimedia iRig Pro or Soundcraft Ui16

IK Multimedia iRig Pro: Portable Studio Equipment in a Compact Package

Cracking open the box of the IK Multimedia iRig Pro, I was struck by its compact design and intuitive control surface. It's a mobile recording device vs digital mixer that's light as a feather but doesn't skimp on features. Testing it out with some simple tracks in Logic using a mic and guitar direct line, I found the input levels easy to set, resulting in some clear-as-a-bell recordings without any noticeable lag. It played nice with Logic too, being recognized instantly for seamless integration. The onboard phantom power handled my condenser mic efficiently, although it took some knob twiddling to get the level just right.

Quality Build with Versatile Connections

The build quality of this iOS compatible audio interface feels solid and durable. With MIDI in and out, high-end XLR output, plus various power options like battery or USB, it flexes its muscles in terms of versatility. Whether you're team Mac or PC, or even if you're an Android guy or gal, this audio interface is ready to play ball. The inclusion of cables and a tripod attachment was thoughtful – the perfect recipe for live performance gear.

Standalone Mixer Functionality – A Sweet Bonus!

Despite its lack of EQ controls on the surface when used as a standalone mixer, I was impressed by the sound output quality when paired with external mic preamps or effect pedals. This makes it quite the contender in our audio interface comparison.

Battery Life & Mobile Compatibility – A Portable Dream

The portability is upped even more thanks to its ability to run on battery power when used standalone or with mobile devices. While I can't vouch for its full battery life limits yet (more testing required), so far it's performed reliably in this mode. IK Multimedia's customer service was on point when I had an issue with a missing serial number, which left a good taste in my mouth.

Pros & Cons of the iRig Pro

Pros: This device shines in its portability, deep feature set, and compatibility across devices. Its function as a standalone mixer and inclusion of 48-volt phantom power are worth noting. Cons: On the downside, some users have reported issues with sound quality and freezing when DJ'ing or streaming. Also, processing effects on iPads seemed to be a bit of a challenge.

Soundcraft Ui16: A Remote-Controlled Digital Mixer Packed with Features

Moving on to the Soundcraft Ui16, this remote-controlled 16-input digital mixer is loaded with features. The ability to control it from your tablet or phone is an absolute game-changer for solo sound checks. The built-in effects are top-notch, giving your sound that professional edge. However, be prepared for potential WiFi dropouts if you plan to actively tweak settings during a performance.

User Experience: It's Loaded But Quirky

The interface can be quite tricky to navigate if you're new to digital mixers and the manual isn't much help either – it has some errors. It synced well with my Android and iOS devices (another Android compatible audio interface), but older computers might struggle.

Sound Quality & Performance: Impressive!

Sound-wise, there's no argument – the Ui16 delivers! It works great in both church settings and small events once you get past the initial setup.

The WiFi Issue: Be Aware!

Yes, there are WiFi issues. Dropouts can occur if you're adjusting levels during a performance. However, with some clever positioning of the mixer or a better antenna, you can alleviate these issues.

And the Winner Is…

While both devices are impressive in their own right in this audio interface comparison, there's one clear winner here: the IK Multimedia iRig Pro. It's an iPad audio interface option that stands out for its portability and versatility – perfect for studio and mobile use. Its compatibility with multiple devices, excellent mic pres, and functional standalone mixer capabilities make it a robust multitrack recording device. The Soundcraft Ui16 is a strong contender, especially with its wireless functionality and professional-level effects. However, it falls short compared to the iRig Pro's portability and ease-of-use. The Ui16's WiFi issues and quirky interface also make it less user-friendly. In conclusion, if you're looking for portable studio equipment that delivers quality sound – both in the studio and on-the-go – the IK Multimedia iRig Pro is your best bet.