PreSonus – AudioBox 22VSL
I am back and this time I have the pleasure to give you my review of the brand new Interface AudioBox 22VSL from PreSonus.
The AudioBox 22VSL is the smallest version in the brand new AudioBox VSL series of USB 2.0 interfaces from PreSonus with a price around $199.95 US and 195 Euro.
The AudioBox 22VSL is compatible with both Windows and MAC and delivers support for ASIO, Core Audio, Direct Sound (In Windows XP), Windows Audio Session API (In Windows Vista and Windows 7).
The AudioBox 22VSL is equipped with Class A XMAX mic preamps, known from the StudioLive mixers and has 24-bit, 96 kHz converters with 114 dB dynamic range and LED clip indicator for each channel.
The AudioBox 22VSL features the new VSL mixer software that holds processing features of Compressor, EQ and Gate as well as Reverb and Delay effects for monitoring purpose.
AudioBox 22VSL in/out specs
- 2 combo XLR / ¼” mic/instrument inputs
- 2 balanced ¼” main (L/R) line outputs
- 1 stereo ¼” headphone output
- 1 USB 2.0 port
For more information and full specifications of the AudioBox 22VSL please visit,
Inside the box
- As I open the nice looking box (see image above) I find that PreSonus has packed everything up nicely and everything needed to get the AudioBox 22VSl connected and letting you start your music creation is in the package, included with the AudioBox 22VSL is
The next image will show all that was included in the box.
The AudioBox 22VSL
The AudioBox 22VSL has borrowed the looks from its older brother AudioBox USB, The blue steel case feels solid and the Interface is perfect in size.
The power led has been given a blue shine instead of the old red.
Looking at the front we first find the two combo XLR / ¼” mic/instrument inputs, after that we find the 48V Phantom power switch (Push button).
The first two lower knobs are the Gain knobs for channel 1 and 2, that has a range of -15 dB to +65 dB.
On the right side of then we find the mixer knob that control the balance between input and playback signal, if you use the VSL software this knob should be set to VSL as the software handles this balance instead.
The two top knobs handles the Main and Headphone output levels.
The back of the AudioBox 22VSL holds the USB 2.0 connector, MIDI in and out, the two balanced ¼” main (L/R) line outputs and the stereo ¼” headphone output.
Installing the AudioBox 22VSL drivers and software is straight forward, since I already have the PreSonus Studio One V2 Professional (check out the review here ) I did not need any further installation but I reckon installing everything would be a 20 min job and then you are ready to start creating music.
The AudioBox 22VSL is built with quality, the size is perfect and the hardware is top class.
The only thing I do not like with the layout is that the Headphone jack is placed on the back.
The two mic / instrument inputs are amazing, The XMAX mic preamp worked flawless with my Solaris condenser microphone, and the instrument input handled my Yamaha electric acoustic guitar, and my Ibanez RG 420 electric guitar perfect.
The sound is crisp clear and totally buzz hum and noise free with perfect results, even when I hooked up my V-AMP 3 to the AudioBox 22VSL and let it pre-process the sound a bit I was amazed with the results.
The big advantage with the AudioBox VSL series of Audio Interfaces is the VSL mixer software, it not only controls everything it also comes with the processing effects EQ, Compressor and Gate.
But to take things further PreSonus also added two FX channels that will let you ad Reverb and Delay as monitoring effect, this is very useful when you want to have a more finished sound in your headphones when recording something like vocals.
In the VSL mixer software we have on the lower section first two channel strips for Input 1 and input 2, then comes the DAW channels 1 and 2 and is the output channel from your DAW software. Next We can see the FX channel A and B that handles the Reverb and Delay effects, and last is the Main output channel.
Furthest to the right we find a browser, here you can load predefined presets for the channel strips as well as different FX modes and even complete setups for the whole VSL mixer.
I want to point out that you can easily save your own settings and rename any setting in all three tabs of the browser.
Note that all channel strips has Gate, Compressor and EQ that can be turned on and off.
There are two more features I want to point out!
If you look at the top of input 1 and 2 as well as DAW1 and Daw2 you can se that we have
HI PASS and above that we find that is a phase reverse toggle.
On the IN2 channel is highlighted, This feature allows us to toggle the channel effects to process the audio file so we get a recorded audio that has been pre-processed by the VSL effects, Note that if you have any Input Channels sent to the FX buses, these effects cannot be recorded in your DAW.
Having the VSL is great, ether to just monitor your audio with effects or to pre-process the audio with EQ, Gate, Compressor, or you can do both.
The THE FX A and FX B allows us to get in touch with the finished sound or to get what you would have in the studios effects in your vocal when recording.
But that’s not it..
No matter the what buffer settings you use and what latency you have in DAW, you will still have near zero latency on the inputs when using the VSL mixer´s effects.
The big advantage with the VSL mixer is that it can be used to save up resources by using the Post feature to pre process the audio when recording in your DAW.
A first look at the PreSonus AudioBox 22VSL would probably make you think just another USB 2.0 Audio Interface, but one thing I have learned is to really look into an interface and its features before deciding if its for me or not.
The AudioBox 22VSL has the look of its older brother AudioBox USB , But that is not a bad choice made by PreSonus.
The Build quality of the AudioBox 22VSL its FANTASTIC, This little box can handle allot of beating and that’s always nice if you are using it with your portable PC/MAC.
The control knobs feel very nice and even though the space is limited between the knobs they are easily turned.
The Preamps are first class, as I mentioned before they work perfect with anything I tested on them.
The only bad thing I found with the AudioBox 22VSL is the Headphone jack placement.
I swap headphones allot and it’s a pain when the jack is in the back of the interface.
The software bundle with the AudioBox 22VSL is great, you will have a good start point and will be doing music in less then an hour after you open the box.
The VSL mixer is awesome, and will be a life and timesaver for many who has it in the feature.
To be able to pre-process the sound or just to get a good monitoring effect when recording is ace, but the real strength to me is the the ability to pre-process the audio.
Just look at recording vocals, you use the VSL the get a perfect start point for your mix and save that setting to the VSL software.
Now every time you want to record vocals you can load that setting and your vocal audio file will have a nice start point for when its time to mix.
I am very impressed with the AudioBox 22VSL, PreSonus clearly know how to make great products and adding nice usable features at the right price.
I also want to add that during these three Months I have had the AudioBox 22VSL running with windows 7 64 bit, the driver has not once failed on me or the computer.
- Great build quality
- First class preamps.
- Easy to use
- Great price
- The VSL mixer
- Stable drivers
And to all my readers … THANK YOU