I'm looking at getting an XLR interface for my Samson Q2U as right now its just USB and while it works fine I want to keep improving my setup. The Samson Q2U claims it has a sensitivity of -54 dB online, and I think that the Shure SM7B has around the same. The Focusrite Scarlett Solo has 56 dB of gain, but I know people often talk about how it doesn't pair well with the Shure SM7B.

I want to stay under 150 $ for buying an XLR interface and the Scarlett seems well praised, but I'm afraid it won't be enough, and I would have to get a cloudlifter or something of the sort to pair with it. My understanding is that you want to aim for close to -6 to -12 dB, so if the scarlett maxes out at 56 I couldn't set it to closer to like ~45 dB of gain, so it would end up around this point in the end. Ultimately will it be enough for the Samson q2u or should I look into something with closer to 60 dB of gain?

I'm new to audio and this website, so sorry for any formatting errors or if I simply haven't done enough research. If you do have any ideas for an XLR interface under 150 that would be nice.

1 Answer 1


Unfortunately setting the dB input isn’t as simple as that but don’t get too concerned with that part just yet. The Scarlett will be able to increase the level just fine. What is probably more important in your case is how far the microphone is from your mouth and how loudly you speak.

  • Thanks for the answer, To clarify you are saying that The Scarlett shouldnt have an issue powering the mic right?
    – armando19
    Commented May 30, 2021 at 18:35
  • @armando19 correct Commented May 30, 2021 at 20:39

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