iRig HD 2 (and others) low output levels


  • A2

    I have been testing a few of the iOS interfaces available. The specs for the iRig HD 2 show the maximum output at being 1.6vpp, which is roughly equivalent to a guitar output (my EMG 707's put out about 1.5vpp if I hit an open A chord). If anything, these devices should be capable of MUCH more output, a regular audio interface will be on the order of +10 - +20dBu (1.6vpp is around -2.7dBu for reference). But I digress

    I can't get the actual output going through this device and through any software (even with everything bypassed) to get anywhere near this level. Here are the results of some testing I did, first setting guitar to DI to -15dBFS for reference levels

    guitar into DI = -15dBFS

    guitar into iRig HD 2 (not connected to lightning) into DI = -28dBFS Gain controls have no effect but Thru/FX switch mutes when set to FX

    guitar into iRig HD 2 (connected to lightning) into DI = -15dBFS Thru/FX switch set to Thru. Gain controls have no effect

    guitar into iRig HD 2 (connected to lightning) into DI Loudest with no distortion = -28dBFS Thru/FX switch set to FX. All Amplitube FX bypassed.

    guitar into iRig HD 2 (connected to lightning) into DI Using Amplitube's in/out controls to set for highest output, allowing distortion = -27dBFS
    Thru/FX switch set to FX. All Amplitube FX bypassed.

    I have exchanged some emails with IK's tech support over this, and tested roughly the same on an iRig 2. Anyone know if the Sonicport has higher output levels?

    Could there be some setting on the iPad telling it to drop the lightning connector's audio 12dB?


  • A2

    I've been back and forth with IK about this and confirmed about the same levels on the iRig 2.

    Has anyone been able to get unity gain with the direct guitar signal at the output of any of these devices? I'm wondering if lightning power just isn't enough, but I can't imagine this issue would have gone unnoticed for so long and maybe I just got two defective units?


  • A2

    After further testing, I have determined that my guitars are just way the hell louder than I could have believed they were. I finally broke down and got some actual measurments and found the iRig HD 2 to sit solidly between -10dBV and +4dBu, at around 0.6 VRMS, louder than a lot of my guitar pedals. My crazy guitar turned out to be around 1.8Volts

    Updated at http://pipelineaudio.net/2017/10/18/low-output-on-ios-guitar-interfaces/