New Toys: Solid State Logic SSL 2 AND SSL 2+

SSL offers two versions of their first ever, USB C audio interfaces: the 2-in/2 out SSL 2 and the 2-in/4 out SSL 2+. Both models operate up to 24-bit/192kHz and require no driver on Mac computers. For PCs, download the free SSL ASIO/WDM driver.

They are indentically sized desktop units with the same sound, performance and operation. There are two identical SSL microphone/line/instrument pre-amplifiers capable of up to 62dB of microphone gain. Enough gain for using low output ribbon or vintage dynamic mics. Three push-button switches on Channels 1 and 2 select: +48-volt, line level, or instrument input for guitars and/or basses.

I liked the straight-ahead input level metering provided by five LEDs that show input levels—the manual offers good suggestions about setting record levels with the red Gain control knob. Lastly, the lighted “4K” button adds a combination of high-frequency boost and subtle harmonic distortion—the sound of SSL 4000-Series consoles. “4K” works well for acoustic guitars and dark-sounding microphones on certain vocalists.

The large Volume control knob sets speaker level out of two 1⁄4-inch TRS rear panel output jacks. The Monitor Mix blend control balances between “Input”—the live audio coming in and “USB” or the audio returning from the DAW.

The SSL 2+ adds: MIDI input and output on 5-pin DIN jacks; an unbalanced stereo output that “mirrors” the main balanced 1 and 2 outputs; and another unbalanced stereo output 3 and 4. The SSL 2+ has a second stereo headphone output jack called Phones B with front panel level control.

Complete with the SSL Production Pack Bundle of software and USB cables, the SSL 2 sells for $229.99 and the SSL 2+ is $279.99 MSRP. I bought a SSL 2 and use it all the time for computer audio, Zoom or Skype.