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So, someone stole my sound card. It was a beautiful Terratec PHASE 26 USB and I liked it a whole lot. Except it was rather clumsy to work with in a Win/Mac environment for MIDI development, since MIDI used a platform-specific firmware.

Hence, I am looking for a new USB/Firewire soundcard. Do you know any professional soundcard that is truly Win/Lin/Mac/BSD cross-platform compatible?

I know this is somewhat a buying recommendation question. For two reasons however, I think it is relevant in the scope of superuser:

  1. It is more a question about cross platform compatibility
  2. You are just so damn knowledgeable and I don't know whom else to ask
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Please search for forums for reviews and stuff like that. I found one for you: – r0ca Jul 26 '10 at 19:56

Of the professionally usable soundcards, I know that the Delta line by M-Audio has good Linux support. I've seen/heard a low model (the 2496) used just for music listening and it was quite good. Still, if you find one of their models appealing, you should research more on its compatibility. In the worst case, the Linux driver will support only part of the features (:

You could also take a look at the Onkyo sound cards because of their good DAC. But I'm not sure whether they have models meant for the music creator, they're maybe more audiophile-oriented. They also seem quite hard to get outside Japan. But if I'm not mistaken, they also use the VIA Envy chip, which should have Linux support. Again, research the specific model you've chosen for any Linux compatibility flaws.

Both Deltas and Onkyos should be no problem on Mac/Windows.

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I am using presonus firepod... it works nice on windows and even better on mac, the really good thing on mac it's that it doesn't need any drivers it's just plug and play...I had tried to install it on a linux system (with freebob drivers) a few years ago but I wasn't so lucky(though it is most probable that it would work with some more effort), also there are a lots of things improved last years on linux drivers. I believe it presonus is a good option because most parameters on the soundcard(amplitude etc.) are hardware and not software controled.I guess that means less modification for the drivers(just an assumption).Good luck.

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up vote 0 down vote accepted

After a lot of researching I found the Cakewalk UA-25 EX, which supposedly has excellent driver support for Windows (including 64 bit versions), Mac and Linux.

As far as I can tell so far, this is completely true and rather awesome. Oh, and sound quality is rather excellent, too.

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