Built to deliver top-shelf sound in a rack-friendly and easy-to-use format for bands, project studio engineers, and panel podcasters who need mix-minus functionality when taking calls, the third-generation Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 3rd Gen USB Audio Interface, High-Fidelity, Studio Quality Recording interface lets artists, engineers, and producers score pro-level tone with no learning curve.
Equally capable of tracking vocals and instruments, the eight improved Scarlett microphone preamps feature switchable phantom power for condenser mics, pads to prevent distortion on loud input signals, and a selectable-per-channel Air circuit, which adds clarity-enhancing brightness based on Focusrite's legendary ISA preamplifier.
The first two XLR-1/4" combo inputs can accept unbalanced instrument levels from guitars, basses, synthesizers, and drum machines, or balanced line levels from a mixing console or outboard preamps, while combo inputs 3-8 support mic- or line-level sources.
Unlocking the ability to record at standard CD quality or high-fidelity resolutions, the 24-bit / 192 kHz AD/DA converters ensure that signals are captured and reproduced with detail and accuracy. With four balanced 1/4" line/monitor outputs, six additional 1/4" line outs, two 1/4" stereo headphone jacks, and independent volume control of the two headphone outputs and the main/alt speaker outs, the Scarlett 18i20 can simultaneously feed multiple monitoring systems and outboard effects processors with ease.
The virtual loopback function on the Scarlett 18i20 empowers podcasters with an easy mix-minus setup for taking calls without the caller being distracted by a delayed audio return signal. Plus, the onboard talkback feature and built-in talkback mic streamline the task of communicating with your artists during recording sessions. You can even utilize your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch to wirelessly control the Scarlett 18i20.
Utilize the dual ADAT optical input and output ports to interface external 8-channel AD/DA converters (available separately). Traditional 5-pin MIDI I/O is provided for seamless integration of MIDI equipment such as a keyboard or sound module, and S/PDIF coaxial ports allow proper routing of stereo digital gear.
With its AC powering for stable power in the studio, space-saving USB Type-C connection, and extensive software bundle including elementary versions of Ableton Live and Avid Pro Tool's music production workstations, virtual instruments, plug-in effects, loops, and more, the Scarlett 18i20 gives you plenty of powerful tools to kick-start your inspiration. Just connect the Scarlett 18i20 to an AC power source via the supplied power cable, plug into your Mac/Windows computer via USB, fire up your preferred audio recording software, and let the creativity flow.
Optimized third-generation technology
The 3rd-generation Focusrite Scarlett 18i20's exterior has undergone a sleek makeover. Under the hood, though, Scarlett 18i20 has been tweaked and upgraded to deliver better sonics, lower latency, and enhanced ease of use. With sample rates up to 192kHz, you've got the studio-grade sound you can take anywhere. Focusrite has added their renowned Air circuit to their already-amazing Scarlett mic preamps. The instrument inputs have also been re-engineered to handle the hottest active pickups. Lastly, Focusrite has wired analog protection circuitry across the Scarlett 18i20's inputs and outputs, safeguarding your interface from damaging power surges.
Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 offers super-low latency for better performances
You know you perform better when you've got a great-sounding monitor mix with everything you need to hear to be inspired — for example, reverb and delay on a guitar solo. The Focusrite Scarlett 18i20's super-low latency lets you monitor with native plug-in effects in real-time, so you can hear your parts as you envision them and record better performances. At Sweetwater, we know you can't put a price on that. But if you prefer the simplicity and convenience of monitoring your input directly with guaranteed low latency, simply engage the Direct Monitor circuit. A duo of virtual loopback inputs allows you to capture a stereo feed of any combination of hardware input and software playback channels, making podcasting, live streaming, and sampling tasks a cinch.
Keep an eye on your levels with LED bar-graph meters
Your mom always said to watch your levels. Well, perhaps she didn't, but you know you should — and the Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 makes it easy. The 18i20's easy-to-read 8-channel, 5-segment bar-graph meters always let you know when you've got a healthy signal level for recording.
Great for Bands, Project Studios, and Large Home SetupsWith its 1 RU size, USB Type-C connectivity, and AC powering (via the included power cable), the Scarlett 18i20 is well suited for bands, project studios, and large home setups in need of plenty of analogs and digital I/O in a rack-mountable form factor.
Pristine, High-Resolution ConversionThanks to its high-performance 24-bit / 192 kHz AD/DA converters, the Scarlett 18i20 is equipped to capture any source from vocals to acoustic and electric instruments clearly and accurately, so you never have to worry about the interface clouding your sound.
Scarlett Mic Preamps with Customizable ToneThe eight upgraded third-generation Scarlett mic preamps feature switchable 48V phantom power (in banks of four channels) to accommodate your favorite condenser mics, and a selectable-per-channel Air setting, which reproduces the Air effect of Focusrite's original ISA mic preamp to impart enhanced brightness and openness on your vocal recordings. Use the selectable input pads to prevent distortion when tracking high-level sources such as acoustic drums or electric guitars equipped with active pickups.
Instrument/Line SwitchingThanks to switchable instrument/line settings, the first two XLR-1/4" combo inputs on the Scarlett 18i20's front panel allow distortion-free recording of instruments such as electric guitar and bass, synthesizers, or drum machines with no need for DI boxes or amplifiers, or in Line mode they can be used for line-level sources like a mixer's stereo output or the line outs from external mic preamps or guitar/bass amps. Combo inputs 3-8 are able to handle mic- or line-level sources.
Straightforward Controls and Level IndicationThe Scarlett 18i20's independent gain knobs and 5-segment LED input meters to mean that you'll have no trouble getting set up and dialing in the perfect levels.
Dual Independent Headphone and Main/Alt Monitor OutputsThe first four balanced 1/4" TRS monitor outputs on the rear panel enable hum-free connectivity with two pairs of balanced studio monitors, and their anti-thump technology protects your speakers if the interface is powered on while the speakers are powered on. To allow critical listening through headphones for two people, there are two front-panel 1/4" headphone jacks, each with its own dedicated volume knob. Another knob is allocated for controlling the volume of the main monitor outputs (1-2) or the alt monitor outputs (3-4), and buttons are provided for dim and mute functions.
Rear-Panel Line OutputsSix additional balanced 1/4" TRS line outputs can be found on the rear panel of the Scarlett 18i20. Use these to route tracks from your session into separate analog inputs on a console or summing mixer, or to feed outboard effects processors.
Virtual Loopback for Mix-Minus and MoreThe Scarlett 18i20 features one pair of virtual loopback inputs, allowing you to capture a stereo feed of any combination of hardware input and software playback channels, making podcasting, live streaming, and sampling tasks much easier.
MIDI I/OSpin the Scarlett 18i20 around and you'll find traditional 5-pin MIDI I/O ports, perfect for hooking up a MIDI keyboard controller, a synthesizer/workstation, or a sound module for MIDI recording, editing, and sequencing.
Stereo S/PDIF Digital I/OIn addition to having flexible analog I/O, the Scarlett 18i20 offers S/PDIF stereo digital input and output ports via coaxial jacks. Use the S/PDIF input to record the output of a digital DJ mixer or an external mic preamp outfitted with an A/D converter and S/PDIF output. Run Scarlett's S/PDIF output to a high-end D/A converter for extra processing or mastering with analog gear.
8-Channel ADAT Optical I/OThe inclusion of dual ADAT optical input ports on the Scarlett 18i20 means that you can record up to eight more channels of audio at up to 96 kHz (four channels at 192 kHz), a perfect way to pipe in an external 8-channel mic preamp with an onboard A/D converter.
Dual ADAT optical outputs are also present, should you wish to send tracks digitally (skipping a D/A stage) to a headphone distribution system, an external converter, or a digital mixer.
Wordclock OutputA BNC output provides a stable word clock signal for synchronization of external digital equipment such as other audio interfaces or a digital mixing console.
Powerful Software ControlRoute your audio, cue mix, loopback, and monitor mixes from your Mac or Windows computer via the Focusrite Control desktop software. Tap into even more convenience by using the Focusrite Control iOS app on your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch to remotely control your Scarlett when connected to Focusrite Control Desktop.
All the Tools You Need to Start RecordingThe Scarlett line of interfaces comes with some of the best-loved software tools in the business.
Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 3rd Gen USB Audio Interface, High-Fidelity, Studio Quality Recording Key Features:
- Bands and Project Studios
- USB Type-C / Type-A Connectivity
- 8 Scarlett Mic/Line Preamps, 2 Hi-Z Ins
- Dual Headphone Outs, 10 Line Outs
- 24-Bit / 192 kHz AD/DA
- AC Powered / Mac, Windows
- Phantom Power, MIDI, S/PDIF, ADAT I/O
- Pads, Onboard Talkback, Air Mode
- Virtual Loopback, Wordclock Output
- DAWs, VIs, Loops, and Samples
What's In the Box:
- Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 Rackmount 18x20 USB Type-C Audio/MIDI Interface (3rd Generation)
- USB Type-C to USB Type-A Cable
- IEC Power Cable
- Set of Rack Ears
- Limited 3-Year Warranty
Brand Focusrite Manufacture SKU AMS-SCARLETT-18I20-3G Form Factor Rackmount (Rack-Mountable with Included Hardware) Display 8 x Multi-Segment LED Meter Channels of I/O Analog:
8 Inputs / 10 Outputs
10 Inputs / 10 Outputs
Maximum Sampling Rate 192 kHz / 24-Bit Number of Microphone Preamps 8 Preamps Input Level Adjustment 8 x Knob Expansion Slots None
Pad -10 dB (Switchable per Channel) Gain/Trim Range Mic/Line Inputs:
High-Pass Filter None Solo/Mute Mute per Master
Analog Audio I/O 2 x Combo XLR-1/4" TRS Balanced/Unbalanced Mic/Line/Hi-Z Input
6 x Combo XLR-1/4" TRS Balanced Mic/Line Input
10 x 1/4" TRS Balanced/Unbalanced Line/Monitor Output
2 x 1/4" TRS Unbalanced Headphone Output
Phantom Power 48 V, Selectable On/Off (on 8 Channels) Digital Audio I/O 1 x RCA Coaxial S/PDIF Input
1 x RCA Coaxial S/PDIF Output
1 x TOSLINK Optical ADAT / S/PDIF Input (S/MUX Support)
1 x TOSLINK Optical ADAT Input (S/MUX Support)
1 x TOSLINK Optical ADAT / S/PDIF Output (S/MUX Support)
1 x TOSLINK Optical ADAT Output (S/MUX Support)
Host Connection / USB 1 x USB Type-C (USB 2.0) USB (Non-Host) None Sync I/O 1 x BNC Word Clock Output Network I/O None MIDI I/O 1 x DIN 5-Pin Input
1 x DIN 5-Pin Output
Wireless Connectivity None
Frequency Response 20 Hz to 20 kHz ±0.1 dB Maximum Input Level Mic Inputs:
+9 dBu (Min Gain)
+16 dBu (Min Gain, with Pad)
+12.5 dBu (Min Gain)
+14 dBu (Min Gain, with Pad)
+22 dBu (Min Gain)
+29 dBu (Min Gain, with Pad)
Maximum Output Level Line Outputs:
+15.5 dBu (Balanced)
Impedance Mic Inputs:
< 1 Ohm
Dynamic Range Mic Inputs:
THD+N Mic Inputs:
EIN Mic Inputs:
-128 dB A-Weighted
Sample Rates Up to 192 kHz (AD/DA Conversion) Sample Rate Conversion None Bit Depths Up to 24-Bit (AD/DA Conversion) Sync Sources ADAT, Internal, S/PDIF
Audio Storage & Playback
Memory Card Slot None
OS Compatibility macOS 10.12
Windows 7 or Later
*As of March, 2022: check with manufacturer for the most up-to-date compatibility
Included Software Ableton Live Lite
Pro Tools First
Compatible Software (Not Included) Any Core Audio (Mac) Compliant Software Included Plug-Ins Dynamics:
Focusrite Red 3
Focusrite Red 2
Reverb & Room:
Softube TSAR-1R Reverb
Softube Tube Delay
Harmonic & Tape:
Softube Saturation Knob
Supported Drivers/API & Plug-Ins Core Audio (Mac)
Mobile Device Compatibility None Required Hardware Available USB 2.0 Port
USB Cable (Included)
Internet Connection Required for Software/Driver Download
Power Requirements AC Input AC Input Power 100 to 240 VAC, 50 / 60 Hz Power Consumption 30 W
Rackmount Size 1 RU (with Included Hardware) Dimensions 19 x 10.23 x 1.83" / 48.3 x 25.98 x 4.65 cm Weight 7.2 lb / 3.3 kg