USB sound card for Ardour?

I’ve searched around the forums for a while to find out which USB sound card work well with Ardour under Linux. In all the posts the question is answered by “get a firewire interface instead” and they all concurred and dropped the USB idea.

Well, in my case i don’t have firewire as an option. I want to run Ardour on my Eee PC 901, so i have no possibility for using a firewire card.

So, my only question is:
Do any of your guys know of a well-supported USB sound card for use with Ardour under Linux? I am an expert Gentoo user, so i know all the nuts and bolts, but i have no idea how to figure out what USB sound hardware is the best supported - alsa’s doesn’t seem to deliver these information very well with USB hardware.
My budget is around $175. I don’t mind it it’s a bit more or less, all i care about is getting the best support around that price.

I am only going to use it for reamping guitar tracks, so 2 i/o channels should be sufficient. If it has more, great, but i don’t really need it.

I hope you can help mere out here. :slight_smile:

Someone on the LAD list reported using a Behringer UCA202. There’s also a minimal list here.

Thanks for your answer, but i’m really looking for someone with hands-on experience. I want to be absolutely sure that what i buy is well-supported.

I sometimes use the Behringer UCA202 and it seems to work perfectly. At least until now I haven’t had any trouble with it. I think its main advantage is the incredible price. Its draw-backs are the RCA jacks and the “unprofessional” 1/8" headphone jack.


I have good luck with an old Tascam US-122, Very stable, well supported in Linux, XLR inputs, Phantom power, Direct monitoring. The only drawback is due to it’s age 24bit/48000 is the best resolution, I still use 16bit/44100 for most things and it’s bulletproof.

US-122’s are plentiful on Ebay, Not to be confused with the newer “US-122L” which is reportedly not supported in Linux.

Thanks guys, i’ll check those out. Keep suggestions coming if you have more.

What did you end up using? I’m curious about Edirol/Cakewalk ua-25ex. I use the Edirol fa-101 (Firewire) with a MacBook, and it’s great in both Mac OS and Linux.

I have an Edirol UA-25 (not the EX) that I use with my laptop. Works perfectly. It might be ideal for your projected use. Prices for used units are usually within your range. One is available from MusicGoRound for $169, see Google Shopping.



I’m using the Edirol UA-25 EX for more than a year now with Linux. Works like a charm!

You cannot get 96kHz full duplex (only recording OR playing), but 48kHz works perfectly.

I have few recordings on using the UA-25EX, you can check the sound quality there.

Enjoy :slight_smile:

I use a Lexicon Alpha ( Two channels, 24-bit, 44.1 or 48 kHz. It sounds way better than it ought to at its sub-$100 price point. Note that the mic input does not supply phantom power.