#1
I was wondering what would be a good interface to plug into my computer for under $200. I need 2 xlr phantom powerd inputs for recording straight acoustic and such, and also two 1/4" instrument inputs so i can run two cables from a mixer to the interface (this way i can pan out and mix drums, for instance, and run a left and right cable into the computer so it has a stereo sound to it). It would also be able if there was a built in pre-amp. Btw i have an HP laptop with vista running on it (not my choice, came with it). Thanks for any help.
#2
You are probably best going with an M-Audio based interface since they have the best Vista drivers. Presonus and EMU both make Vista drivers for their products but I am not sure how stable they are TBH.
A slight problem is that M-Audio makes higher priced interfaces. You will have to spend at least $200 on a new interface. If you want to save money, go with a used one on ebay or a B-Stock version at a store.

Look into the following:
M-Audio Fast Track Pro Mobile (USB 1.1)
PreSonus Inspire (firewire)
EMU 0404 (USB 2.0)


If you need a mic, be prepared to spend $100 for something like a Shure SM57.