M-Audio FastTrack vs. Line6 GuitarPort

M-Audio just released the FastTrack USB, a break-out box for recording guitar and voice. Looks like they made a GuitarPort clone, but with a more ‘serious’ design. That is: a basic A/D converter with a jack input and a USB output, and a bunch of effect software for your computer.
A quick comparison:

FastTrack GuitarPort
Price: $129 $99
Input: 1/4″ jack, line, XLR 1/4″ jack
Controller: gain, input, output output
Software: GT Player Express (1.0?) GuitarPort 2.5 + RiffWorks
Platform: Windows/Mac Windows

I currently own a GuitarPort and I love it. It does an awesome ‘Smoke on the water’ and ‘Long train running’, and it works without a glitch. The FX software shows every effect (noise gate, delay, reverb, phaser, …) as an amp frontpanel. I just upgraded to the 2.5 software. At first sight, they added a parametric equalizer, a metronome and they finally figured out it made sense to group the presets in genres. You gotta love Line6: they sell people great hardware and keep giving them better software for free every couple of months.
I also have an M-Audio Ozone and that has been a bit of a disappointment. The latency of the MIDI controller is way too big, and the keyboard seems to lose its USB connection every couple of minutes, which makes for a stack of warning windows if you leave the PC alone for an hour. Anyway, I’m going to upgrade my DAW PC to Windows XP and see if it works any better.

6 thoughts on “M-Audio FastTrack vs. Line6 GuitarPort”

  1. I think the Guitar Port doesn’t have ASIO support like the fast track so not as flexible.

  2. And still I don’t find any comment aywhere on the “latency” side of things”.

    Fasttrack USB relies on Asio drivers, so you will have to take latency in account if you want to monitor through your software (like cubase)with effects on the signal.

    However, if you want to use guitarport’s effects and modelling inside cubase you have to use it as a vst plugin, don’t you? And at that moment latency is an issue again. So my question is: how do these devices behave in such surcomstances?



  3. GuitarPort *does* have asio drivers.

    You cannot use their effects as a VST plugin. They come in as input effect to any software that uses it as its recording device.

    For amp modeling on your computer you cannot beat the GuitarPort in its value. The amp models are top notch. In fact you will pay 100$ for inferior amp modeling software *without* any hardware at all.

  4. I have an M-audio Fasttrack and have no latency. If you are having problems go to their web site and download the new drives. The one I got came with gt express and Ableton live, don’t know if that was a mistake. You can download Kristal studio for free and use a bunch of Vst pluggins.

  5. Well, these are two different products. The Fast Track, which I own, has input for mic and line/instrument and is a cheap input box for analogue signals to your computer. The guitarport is designed as an instrument input for your computer to be used with their modelling software.

    These products are not supposed to be a direct competition. Owning both I can tell you that I like the sounds of the amp modeller in the guitarport, but if I had to choose between the 2 I would keep my Fast Track because of the mic and line inputs, I can mic up guitar cab or vocals and bring input from any device through line in.

  6. I have just bought the fast track and software(LIVE 6)but am stupid, I think! I just want to record my students homework on to a disc and send it home with them. Any help would be greatly needed. Jamie 208-631-0948

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.