About the Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 (3rd Generation)
Ready for your studio projects
Ready for your studio projects
Focusrite's new third-gen Scarlett 18i20 comes packed with features for making polished, professional-sounding recordings. This latest generation of Scarlett interfaces has better microphone preamps than ever — each one has a selectable "Air" mode that simulates the classic Focusrite mic preamps used in AIR Studios for better top-end detail and spaciousness. The 18i20 has eight of those mic preamps, extensive input/output options, and a host of bundled software to get you started making music quickly.
Low-latency performance gives you more flexibility
Like the previous generation of Scarletts, Focusrite's new models offer extremely low latency. That means you can record and monitor in real time using software effects, plug-ins, and virtual instruments from your DAW — instead of relying on monitoring dry input signals. (Give that vocalist a little reverb in their mix to make them feel comfortable, and you might find yourself capturing better takes!)
Inputs for your audio sources
The two front-panel combination XLR/TRS inputs handle mics, line-level signals, and direct input from instruments like electric guitars or basses, with plenty of headroom to handle hotter styles of pickups. Six more rear-panel combo inputs can accept mic and line-level signals. If you're using condenser mics, phantom power is supplied to four inputs at a time with a push of one of the two front-panel 48-volt selectors.
Need more inputs? The optical digital connections on the back panel can accept an eight-channel ADAT stream from an external device like a mic preamp console with an ADAT output. This connection lets you take full advantage of the 18i20's impressive 18-channel input capability, so you can mike an entire band, from vocals and guitars, to keyboards and drum kits. A new built-in talkback microphone accessible via a front-panel button lets you sit in the control booth and communicate with performers in a separate tracking space.
An impressive list of bundled software
The Scarlett 18i20 is designed to work flawlessly with all major DAW software, but if you're just getting started, you'll appreciate that this interface comes bundled with Avid Pro Tools® First as well as Ableton Live Lite. You also get newly designed Focusrite Control software for intuitive control of your mixing and monitoring setups. The bundled software package also includes the Focusrite Red Plug-In Suite, Softube's Time and Tone reverb and delay plug-ins, and more.
- computer audio interface with 18 input and 20 output channels
- 8 newly redesigned Focusrite mic preamps offer low noise, high headroom, and evenly distributed gain
- "Air" mode emulates classic Focusrite ISA mic preamps for spacious sound with additional high-frequency clarity
- direct instrument input signal path offers lots of headroom for high-output electric guitar pickups
- super-low latency lets you record and monitor with software effects in real time
- intuitive Focusrite Control software for configuring your mixing and monitoring setups
- loopback feature lets your record other sources within your computer "virtually," with no physical connectors
- bundled software includes Avid Pro Tools First, Ableton Live Lite, Softube Time and Tone Bundle, Focusrite Red Plug-in Suite, and more
- supports sample rates up to 192kHz
- sleek, durable metal chassis
- accepts mic, instrument, line-level, MIDI, ADAT, and S/PDIF signals
- optical digital in/out allows up to eight channels of ADAT signals with external mic preamps and recorders
- 2 front-panel XLR/TRS switchable mic/line/instrument inputs with 10dB pad for use with microphones, electric guitars and basses, and other instruments
- 6 rear-panel XLR/TRS balanced mic/line inputs for use with microphones, keyboards, and drum machines
- standard 5-pin MIDI input/output jacks for use with an external MIDI controller
- ten 1/4" balanced analog outputs for connecting powered studio monitors, mixing boards, or effects processors
- ADAT-compatible optical (Toslink) digital in/out for connection to external ADAT devices such as a Focusrite 8-channel mic preamp
- coaxial digital (S/PDIF) in/out
- two 1/4" headphone outputs with independent volume control for discrete monitor mixes
- USB Type-C port for connection to a computer
- USB-C to USB-A adapter cable included; USB-C to USB-C cable available separately
- word clock output (BNC connector) for synchronizing sampling clock with external digital recording equipment
- 24-bit analog-to-digital/digital-to-analog conversion with sampling rates of 44.1/48/88.2/96/176.4/192kHz
- volume knob with Dim and Mute buttons for controlling levels in studio monitors (Dim button attenuates level by 18dB)
- 48V phantom power is selectable for mic input groups 1-4 and 5-8
- built-in talkback microphone and front-panel button lets you talk to performers in a different room
- LED level meters for all 8 analog inputs
- supported operating systems: Windows® 7, 8.1, 10; Mac OS X 10.16.3 (High Sierra) and 10.14.5+ (Mojave)
- for more info about Scarlett Gen 3's OS compatibility, see this page from Focusrite's support site
- powered by supplied AC cable
- rack-mountable chassis
- 19"W x 1-7/8"H x 10-1/4"D (1U rack space)
- 7.16 lbs.
- warranty: 2 years
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
- MFR # SCARLETT 18I20 3RD GEN
What's in the box:
- Scarlett 18i20 audio interface
- 70" AC Power cable (IEC 3-pin)
- 2 Rack-mount ears
- Six 8mm screws
- 39" USB Cable (Type-A to type-C / 2.0)
- Safety instructions
More details on the Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 (3rd Generation)
Overview: The Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 is a 18 input/20 output audio interface that's part of the Third Generation of Scarlett series professional computer audio interfaces. It features 8 XLR / 1/4" combo inputs, all with Scarlett mic preamps, along with up to 8 optical digital input channels (ADAT format), and 2 S/PDIF (coaxial) digital input channels. Two front-panel combo inputs can accept mic-, line-, or instrument-level signals, while the 6 rear-panel combo inputs can accept either mic- or line-level signals. Ten line-level outputs are provided on 1/4" jacks, along with 10 combined digital output channels. The Scarlett 18i20 audio interface includes a plethora of recording software, sounds, and plug-ins to quickly get you started making music.
24-Bit/192kHz DAC: The Scarlett 18i20 employs a high-definition 24-bit/192kHz analog-to-digital converter for exceptional sound quality and recording with up to 111 dB dynamic range. The default sample rate of the 18i20 is 48kHz.
Scarlett Preamps: The Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 is equipped with Focusrite's 3rd generation of microphone preamplifiers for use with all types of microphones. The net result of the Scarlett preamp design is high headroom, low noise, wide dynamic range, extended frequency response, and most importantly, musicality and transparency, with smooth highs, solid deep lows, and everything in between.
- Air: Focusrite's latest 3rd gen Scarlett mic preamps feature Air circuitry, derived from Focusrite's legendary ISA preamps. Activating Air can make guitars and vocals sound instantly brighter and more spacious, with a lustrous sheen that can make a real difference in your mix.
Focusrite Control: All setup and configuration of the Scarlett18i20 is done through the Focusrite Control software, available for Windows and Mac, found here. The Focusrite Control software allows detailed routing of all inputs and outputs with adjustable level controls for each. Many of the front-panel controls can also be selected for adjustment and offer more detailed options in the software than is available from the front panel.
Audio Inputs: The Scarlett 18i20 includes 2 front-panel combo and 6 additional rear-panel combo inputs. Rear-panel S/PDIF (coaxial) and Toslink optical digital ports can provide up to 8 channels of digital input.
- XLR / 1/4" Combo Jacks:
- Channels 1 & 2: Front-panel input channels 1 & 2 feature XLR/1/4"
combo jacks that can accept either microphone-, line-, or instrument-level
signals, balanced or unbalanced. Input signal gain for Mic or Line is
automatically set, depending on whether an XLR or /14" plug is inserted. A
front-panel switch for each input lets you select Instrument-level.
- Note: Only microphone-level signals should be used if connecting an XLR plug; higher level signals can overload the preamp circuit. If Phantom power is applied, it could damage non-compatible outboard equipment.
- Channels 3 - 8: Six rear-panel XLR/1/4" combo jacks can accept either Mic- or Line-level signals, balanced or unbalanced.
- Channels 1 & 2: Front-panel input channels 1 & 2 feature XLR/1/4" combo jacks that can accept either microphone-, line-, or instrument-level signals, balanced or unbalanced. Input signal gain for Mic or Line is automatically set, depending on whether an XLR or /14" plug is inserted. A front-panel switch for each input lets you select Instrument-level.
- S/PDIF Coaxial: A rear-panel S/PDIF (coaxial RCA) input can accept 2 channels of audio with sample rates ranging from 44.1kHz up to 192kHz.
- Dual Toslink Optical (ADAT & S/PDIF Formats): Two optical input jacks can provide up to 8 channels of audio with sample rates ranging from 44.1kHz up to 96kHz. When inputting 44.1kHz or 48kHz signals, Optical Input 1 can accept up to 8 channels of audio. If inputting signals at 88.2kHz or 96kHz, Optical Input 1 can accept Channels 1-4, while Optical Input 2 accepts Channels 5-8. Note: 176.4kHz and 192kHz signals are not supported by the Optical Inputs.
Audio Outputs: Audio outputs from the Scarlett 18i20 include ten 1/4" balanced jacks, along with dual Toslink Optical and a single S/PDIF (coaxial) jacks for digital signals.
- 1/4" Jacks: Ten line-level output jacks are provided for signal output (balanced/unbalanced). Outputs 1 & 2 can be used as the Main output, providing left and right channel output to a monitoring system. Outputs 3 & 4 can be assigned as a second set of monitor outputs as well, if needed.
- S/PDIF Coaxial: A rear-panel S/PDIF (coaxial RCA) input can output a 2-channel audio signal at sampling rates from 44.1kHz up to 192kHz.
- Dual Toslink Optical (ADAT & S/PDIF Formats): Two optical output jacks can output up to 8 channels of audio with sample rates ranging from 44.1kHz up to 96kHz. When outputting 44.1kHz or 48kHz signals, Optical Output 1 can send up to 8 channels of audio. If outputting signals at 88.2kHz or 96kHz, Optical Output 1 can output Channels 1-4, while Optical Output 2 outputs Channels 5-8. Note: 176.4kHz and 192kHz signals are not supported by the Optical Inputs.
USB 2.0 Port: The Scarlett 18i20's rear-panel USB port (type-C, 2.0) is where you connect the included USB cable from the audio interface to your computer.
MIDI I/O: The Scarlett 18i20 includes two standard 5-pin MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) sockets are provided for connecting to MIDI equipped keyboards and sound modules. The MIDI Input is used for plugging in a keyboard or control surface for triggering and manipulating sound sources in the computer/software. The MIDI Output lets the software trigger outboard audio devices such as a synthesizer, sound module, or drum machine.
Word Clock Output: A rear-panel BNC connector can be used to output the Scarlett 18i20's internal word clock, used for synchronizing other digital audio equipment in the recording system, or can accept a clock signal from other devices.
Controls: The Focusrite 18i20 provides the following front-panel controls.
- Input Gain Controls: Each of the 8 Input channels includes an input gain control.
- Inst: Input channels 1 & 2 include an Inst button, for use when running an instrument-level signal into either input.
- Pad: Each of the 8 input channels includes a Pad button which will decrease the signal level going to your DAW by 10dB, for use with high-level input signals. This setting can also be selected from the Focusrite Control software.
- Phones: Two Headphone outputs are provided, each with their own level controls.
- 48V: Two buttons are provided for activating +48V phantom power to their corresponding XLR/1/4" combo jacks, one for Channels 1-4 and one for Channels 5-8.
- AIR: Eight yellow AIR LEDs, one for each Input channel, light to indicate if the AIR feature has be activated for that channel. AIR is selected in the Focusrite Control software.
- Input Meters: Eight 5-segment LED bargraph meters indicate the signal levels for each of the 8 analog inputs. Levels indicated -42dB (green, signal present), -18dB (green), -6dB (yellow), and 0dB (red, clipping).
- Lock Icon: This icon will light confirming clock synchronization, either internal or from an external device.
- Monitor: This dial controls the output level of the main monitor outputs and can be configured in the Focusrite Control software to adjust the level of any of the 10 analog outputs.
- USB Icon: Lights to indicate the unit is recognized by a connected computer.
- Dim & Mute: These 2 buttons affect the monitor outputs. Dim reduces the signal level by 18dB, and Mute turns the output off. These can be configured in the Focusrite Control software to control any of the analog outputs.
- Talkback Mic: A small hole (to the right of the Scarlett logo) contains a Talkback microphone.
- Talkback Button: Pressing and holding this activates the Talkback microphone. By default, this is routed to Headphone outputs, but can be configured in the Focusrite Control software to sent to any output or combinations of outputs. Talkback is only active while the button is being pressed.
- ALT: This switches the monitor output from Channels 1 & 2 to Channels 3 & 4 and will light green when active.
- Power Switch
Included Software Bundle: The Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 comes with a powerful software bundle that provides everything you need to record, mix, and master your next project. This software package includes:
- Pro Tools/First Software: Avid Pro Tools is the
industry standard for audio recording and editing software. The Scarlett 18i20
includes Pro Tools/First, Avid's entry-level version of their powerful
software. Even as "entry-level" software, Pro Tools/First is packed with
important features for recording and editing your music.
- Up to 16 audio tracks
- Session Templates: Various session templates are provided to help you get started quickly. Templates for rock, pop, electronica, hip-hop, and jazz can cover a wide range of music styles, each including preloaded virtual instruments. You can also build tracks from scratch and save your track settings as presets.
- Editing: Featuring Pro Tool's world-class editing tools, the Pro Tools/First software lets you click-and-drag MIDI notes, change tempo, edit pitch and timing, correct mistakes, and much more.
- UVI Workstation 3: This is a powerful sample player and multitimbral instrument that makes it easy and fun to create unique sounds. It also includes Xpand!2 virtual instrument pack, offering a wide range of sounds, from beats and loops to orchestral instruments, and more.
- Soundbase: Includes over 3GB of high-quality loops, samples, and sound content created by leading producers.
- Effects & Utility Plugins: Pro Tools/First comes with 23 effects and utility plugins to help shape sounds, warm up tones, and give tracks greater presence. Plugins range from EQ and Dynamics to Reverb and Delays. Additional plugins can be purchased through Avid.
- Cloud Storage: Pro Tools/First includes Avid's free introductory cloud storage, letting you save, sync, and share up to three projects.
- Ableton Live Lite: The Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 includes Ableton
Live Lite, the industry-leading music-making software. Key features include:
- Up to 16 audio and MIDI tracks.
- 4 Software Instruments.
- Over 1500 sounds (5+ GB)
- 21 Audio effects
- 8 MIDI effects
- VST2, VST3, and Audio Unit support
- XLN Audio Addictive Keys: Includes 4 virtual keyboard instruments.
- Softube Time & Tone Bundle: Includes 3 of Softube's world-class plugins: Reverb, Delay, and Distortion.
- Focusrite Red Plugin Suite: Includes accurate models of the classic Red 2 equalizer and Red 3 compressor.
- Focusrite Plugin Collective: This lets you receive free versions of the most innovative software as well as discounts.
- Splice Sounds: A three month subscription to Splice Sounds gives you access to millions of high-quality, royalty-free sounds and loops.
OS Requirements: Below are the minimum operating system requirements for the Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 audio interface.
- Windows 7 (32/64 bit), 8.1, and 10
- Mac® OS X 10.10, 10.11, 10.12 Sierra, 10.13 High Sierra, and 10.14 Mojave
Supported Sample Rates: 44.1kHz, 48kHz, 88.2kHz, 96kHz, 176.4kHz, 192kHz
- Front: 2 x XLR / 1/4" combo jacks (balanced, Mic/Line/Instrument)
- Rear: 6 x XLR / 1/4" jacks (balanced Line input)
- Microphone Inputs 1-8:
- Frequency Response: 20Hz to 20kHz (±0.1dB)
- Dynamic Range: 111 dB (A-weighted)
- Gain Range: 56dB
- THD+N: <0.0012% (minimum gain, -1dBFS input with 22Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)
- Noise EIN: -128dBu (A-weighted)
- Maximum Input Level: +9 dBu (no PAD), +16dBu (PAD selected)
- Input Impedance: 3kΩ
- Line Inputs 1-8:
- Frequency Response: 20Hz to 20kHz (±0.1dB)
- Dynamic Range: 110.5 dB (A-weighted)
- THD+N: <0.002% (minimum gain, -1 dBFS input with 22Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)
- Gain Range: 56dB
- Maximum Input Level: +22 dBu (no PAD), +29.5 dBu (PAD selected)
- Input Impedance: 60kΩ
- Instrument Inputs 1 & 2:
- Frequency Response: 20Hz to 20kHz (±0.1dB)
- Dynamic Range: 110 dB (A-weighted)
- THD+N: <0.003% (minimum gain, -1dBFS input with 22Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)
- Gain Range: 56dB
- Maximum Input Level: +12.5dBu (no PAD), +14 dBu (PAD selected); measured at minimum gain
- Input Impedance: 1.5MΩ
- Line Outputs: 10 x 1/4" TRS (balanced)
- Dynamic Range: 108.5 dB (A-weighted)
- Maximum Output Level (0 dBFS): +15.5 dBu (balanced)
- THD+N: <0.002% (minimum gain, -1dBFS input with 22Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)
- Output Impedance: 430Ω
- Type: 2 x 1/4" stereo
- Dynamic Range: 104 dB (A-weighted)
- Maximum Output Level: 7 dBu
- THD+N: <0.002% (measured at +6dBu with 22Hz/22kHz bandpass filter)
- Output Impedance: <1Ω
- Optical I/O: 4 x Toslink Optical ports; 8 channels @ 44.1/48kHz or 4 channels @ 88.2/96kHz
- S/PDIF I/O: 2 x Coax Digital (RCA) or via Optical input (selectable via Focusrite Control)
- BNC: Word clock output
- USB: 1 x USB Type-C, 2.0
- MIDI I/O: 2 x 5-pin DIN sockets
Dimensions: Width = 17.375", Height = 1.750", Depth = 12.50"
Weight: 7.16 lbs.