After struggling with installing the new drivers for my Echo Darla24, I find myself once again revisiting my desire for a better semi-pro audio card. The money I got for my sampler is burning a hole in my pocket and if I'm not careful it could get spent on something stupid like bills or clothes or food or weapons of mass destruction. My options for a no-extra inputs or outputs card right now seem to be the M-Audio Audiophile 2496 and the Echo Mia.
The one thing that I've wanted for a while besides lower latency in Cubase and overall better performance is the ability to record from one software program to another. So I could load up Reason, hit record in Cubase and go to town. You can hook those two applications up with Rewire, but I find that a bit of an annoying hassle when I'm just messing around with stuff.
The two cards seem to be about the same price, but the Echo Mia offers "eight virtual outputs" which according to reviews I've read will let me record one audio application with another.
The down side is that Echo scares me. The Darla24, while a great sounding card, has had a tendency to be extremely moody depending on the latest drivers and my system configuration at any given time. I would probably pay more money to not have to deal with that crap.
The Audiophile however has similar complaints against it and then there's that whole Devil you know argument and so on.
I'm not sure which decision I'll make, but I'm pretty sure it will be impulsive.