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Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles: Double-Feature

Let’s compare two different bundles of Focusrite podcast equipment.

Getting into podcasting can be expensive and research-heavy — which is why many beginners turn to podcast equipment bundles. Some of the best and most popular come from Focusrite, which offers audio interfaces bundled with microphones, headphones, and podcast editing software.

There are two different Focusrite bundles we’re covering here: the Scarlett 2i2 Studio, and the Vocaster Two Studio. Once we highlight a few of their features, we explain how to get started so you can record your first podcast.

Don’t feel either of these bundles is a fit? We discuss some alternatives that may better suit your needs.

Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles at a glance

What do you get in each Focusrite podcast bundle? 

We broke down both options so you can see everything at a glance.

BundleHeadphonesMicrophoneSoftwareMiscellaneousPrice
Scarlett 2i2 StudioSH-450 closed-back headphones
CM25 MkIII condenser mic with pop filterAbleton Live Lite; Pro Tools Artist (3 months); Hitmaker expansions (free as of July 1st, 2023)3m XLR cable; USB A-C cable; 3-year warranty$299.99 USD
Vocaster Two StudioHP60v closed-back headphonesVocaster DM14v broadcast microphoneAcast Influencer plan (6 months); Vocaster Hub; Hindenburg LITEXLR to XLR microphone cable; USB-C to USB-A cable; 3-year warranty$299.99 USD

Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundle features

As mentioned, we’re looking at Focusrite’s two most popular bundles: the Scarlett 2i2 Studio and the Vocaster Two Studio. 

Let’s start with the newest model in our lineup:

The Scarlett 2i2 Studio podcast equipment bundle

The Scarlett 2i2 is an all-in-one audio interface designed for artists, musicians, and podcasters. It won the 2024 Sound On Sound award for best audio interface, although the actual bundle comes with more than just the interface.

Here are the basics of the Scarlett 2i2:

  • 2 XLR inputs
  • 2 balanced 1/4 outputs (for studio monitors)
  • 1 USB-C port to connect with your recording device
  • 1 USB-C port to power the interface
  • 1 Kensington lock port (if you’re concerned about theft in a public place)
  • 2 1/4 inch line level (or instrument level) inputs
  • 2 gain dials with color meters to show gain (+ auto gain to set levels instantly)
  • 48v of phantom power
  • 1 output dial for your monitors/headphones
  • 1/4 headphone output

You also get headphones, one mic, and recording software in your bundle, along with a pop filter (which we’ll cover later on).

Scarlett 2i2 Studio pros

  • Phantom power lets you connect condenser microphones whenever necessary.
  • Each bundle comes with headphones, software, and a mic so you can begin recording almost immediately.
  • With auto gain and clip-safe features, you can take a set-it-and-forget-it approach to recording audio.

Scarlett 2i2 Studio cons

  • Since you only have color meters to see your gain, it may be difficult to determine proper levels without hard numbers.
  • You cannot control phantom power for separate mic inputs. All connected mics must require additional power (unless you want potential problems).
  • There’s no mute button or power button on the Scarlett 2i2, which can be frustrating for live podcasters wanting more control over their audio.

The Vocaster Two Studio podcast equipment bundle

The Vocaster Two is an audio interface for podcasting, which means it can’t mix audio like a dedicated podcast mixer. Each bundle comes with a microphone, headphones, and even editing software so you can plug into your device and start capturing audio ASAP.

Let’s take a look at the interface itself:

  • 2 XLR inputs (FYI these are XLR only)
  • 2 1/4 headphone inputs
  • 1 power button
  • 1 Kensington lock port
  • 1 USB-C port to connect with a recording device
  • 1/8 (or 3.5 mm) input for sending your audio to a camera
  • 2 balanced 1/4 outputs for your studio monitors
  • 3.5 mm TRRS jack for a hardwired phone connection
  • 48 volts of phantom power
  • Bluetooth connection (for background music and call-ins)
  • Mute buttons, volume controls, and enhance buttons (which turn off the audio processing built into the interface)

We’ll cover the differences between the Vocaster Two and the Scarlett 2i2 later on.

Vocaster Two Studio pros

  • The Vocaster Two comes with many quality-of-life features for podcasters (like a mute button for side convos and Enhance buttons for automatic gain).
  • You can host call-ins and play background music using Bluetooth or even hardwire your phone using the TRRS jack.
  • The software bundle is extremely cost-effective for podcasters without an existing DAW.

Vocaster Two Studio cons

  • The software bundle doesn’t last forever. The Acast Influencer plan, for example, only lasts six months. You have to purchase your own once the period expires or downgrade to the free plan.
  • Some users feel the Vocaster Bundle is unintuitive and difficult to set up. Since there’s no user manual included in the box, it may be stressful for beginners to troubleshoot issues on their own.
  • Although the Vocaster comes with two mic inputs, the bundle only includes one mic. Unless you have a second microphone (or host a one-person show), you may have to pay for additional equipment.
Download the Podcast Launch Guide by The Podcast Consultant

Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundle hardware

Here’s what you get when you buy Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles.

All Focusrite bundles come with the same basic tools: headphones, editing software, the interface, and a microphone. They also come with Focusrite’s three-year warranty, a four-day delivery promise, and free shipping to any location if purchased directly from the manufacturer. 

This is what you get with the Scarlett 2i2 Studio:

  • The interface itself (Scarlett 2i2 4th Gen)
  • USB A-C cables
  • The CM25 MkIII condenser mic (with additional pop filter)
  • A 3m XLR cable
  • SH-450 headphones
  • Software bundles (Ableton Live Lite, Hitmaker Expansions, and three months of Pro Tools Artist)

And this is what you get with the Vocaster Two Studio:

  • Your audio mixer (the Vocaster Two)
  • A DM14v broadcast microphone
  • HP60v closed-back headphones
  • An XLR to XLR microphone cable
  • A USB-C to USB-A cable
  • Software bundles (Vocaster Hub, Hindenburg LITE, and six months of the Acast Influencer plan) 

The Vocaster Two bundle vs the Scarlett 2i2 bundle

Focusrite’s podcast equipment bundles look similar on the surface, but upon examination, you’ll see several key differences.

So what is the difference between the Vocaster Two bundle and the Scarlett 2i2 bundle?

For one thing, you’re getting different types of headphones, microphones, and editing software.

However, the interfaces themselves are also extremely different.

Here’s how they compare at a glance:

Vocaster TwoScarlett 2i2
Headphone OutputsOne per preamp (multiple for Vocaster Two)One, with more on larger models
Vocal EnhancementsEnhance with four voice presets‘Air’ mode for vocals
Mute FunctionalityYesNo
InputsXLR for microphonesXLR for microphones and instruments
ConnectivityPhone and cameraStandard studio connectivity
Auto GainYes, with simple level settingYes, excluding Scarlett Solo
MicrophoneDynamic microphone (Vocaster DM1 or DM14v)CM25 MkIII condenser microphone

If you focus primarily on recording the human voice, you may want to go with the Vocaster Two. The dynamic mic can handle lower sensitivity and noisy recording spaces (such as if multiple people are recording in the same space).

However, you may be more interested in the Scarlett 2i2 if you’re recording live sound. Just keep in mind the condenser mic is more sensitive than a dynamic mic, which means it may pick up undesirable sound unless you have a soundproof recording space.

How to use Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles

Learning how to use Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles.

Focusrite’s bundles come with an Easy Start tool so you can complete the setup process in minutes. Simply plug in your interface and the tool will start automatically — you can register your interface, download software, and watch step-by-step videos if you need more guidance.

If you want to customize your audio settings (or simply check your math), here is a basic setup guide for both podcast bundles:

  • Plug your interface into your computer (or other recording device).
  • Let Easy Start run and answer the questions provided.
  • Connect your microphone(s) and headphones. Set dials to zero.
  • Adjust your preamps to the desired level.
  • Open your recording software (prompted by Easy Start).
  • Click record or begin your podcast Livestream.
  • You are now ready to publish and promote your podcast.

Are you more of a visual learner? Here’s how to set up the Scarlett 2i2 bundle:

And here’s a guide to setting up the Vocaster Two Studio bundle (provided you’re using a Mac):

Alternatives to Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles

Focusrite’s bundles won’t suit every setup.

Here are three alternative podcast equipment bundles you can use to record your show.

Maono Podcast Bundles

Maono Podcast Bundles are an alternative to Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles.

There are 13 different bundles you can get from Maono, including the Maonocaster E2 and Maonocaster Lite. Each comes with the basics you need to get started: microphones, headphones, stands, and even pop filters.

Just keep in mind these are audio mixers, which means they’re somewhat different from audio interfaces. Unlike the Vocaster or Scarlett bundles, however, Maono units come with sound pads and EQ knobs.

Squarock Podcast Bundle

Explore the Squarock Commander M-1 as an affordable podcasting bundle alternative to the Focusrite bundles.

While Focusrite offers premium podcasting bundles like the Scarlett 2i2 Studio and the Vocaster Two Studio, the Squarock Commander M-1 emerges as an appealing alternative for podcasters working within a tighter budget. This bundle is designed with livestreamers and mobile podcasters in mind, offering a mix of portability and ease of use:

  • Livestream-enabled mixer for dynamic broadcasting
  • Comprehensive set of microphone accessories for high-quality audio capture
  • Affordable at just $189.99, making it accessible for podcasting beginners

RØDE Podcast Bundle

You can use the RØDE Podcast Bundle in place of Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles.

RØDE sells several types of podcast bundles, although by far the most popular is the RØDECaster Pro 2. The PodMic 2-Person Podcast Kit comes with everything you need to host a guest on your show, including:

  • 2 PSA1+ Desk-mounted boom arms
  • 2 PodMic cardioid dynamic microphones
  • 2 NTH-100 Headphones
  • 2 XLR cables 

Just keep in mind this is going to cost you — the price is 5x higher than Focusrite’s bundles.

The bottom line on Focusrite Podcast Equipment Bundles

Podcast bundles like the Vocaster Two or Scarlett 2i2 are some of the easiest ways to get into podcasting. However, there’s no shortcut for podcast launching, video recording, or show auditing. For these, you may need a team of professionals.

The Podcast Consultant offers several solutions for podcast production in many capacities. We’ve helped hundreds of shows get off the ground and refine their approach so they can serve and grow their audiences.

If you’re interested in learning more about our work, you can book a discovery call today. We’ll chat about your show, learn more about your objectives, and determine which service(s) are right for you.

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