The Behringer FIREPOWER FCA1616 is a 16x16 FireWire/USB 2.0 audio/MIDI interface that offers a rich feature set and plentiful I/O options for a surprisingly low price. The unit sports 4 front-panel mic/instrument combo jacks-equipped with Behringer's top-of-the-line XENYX microphone preamps-as well as 4 balanced line inputs, 8 balanced line outputs and MIDI in and out jacks on the rear-panel.
Digital I/O includes TOSlink optical in and out connectors, which support up to 8 channels of ADAT, 4 channels of S/MUX, or 2 channels of S/PDIF. A pair of RCA jacks is also included for S/PDIF. When both analog and digital I/O is utilized, the unit is capable of streaming 16 inputs and 16 outputs simultaneously. If you want to expand the channel count, the optional Behringer ADA8000, an 8-Channel A/D and D/A converter equipped with 8 mic preamps and an ADAT interface, can be easily integrated.
Each front-panel input channel is equipped with an input-level control knob, a 48V phantom power switch, a switch for a low-cut filter (great for preventing the pickup of low-end rumble) and a Hi-Z switch with an LED indicator. When activated, the Hi-Z switch sets the input to handle high-impedance sources like guitars and basses.
The FCA1616 features direct hardware monitoring, allowing you to monitor as you record without distracting latency delay. The Direct Monitoring knob lets you smoothly cross fade between the direct signal and the one returning from the DAW. The two headphone outputs offer source-select options and each has its own volume control.
The unit is equipped with a variety of useful LED meters and status lights to give you visual feedback during recording. A master level knob lets you control the level going to your studio monitors. The FCA1616 runs on AC power, but can also be bus powered via a 6-pin FireWire cable, contingent upon a computer that feeds sufficient power.