AXE I/O has swept up the top scores in Gearslutz's in-depth review. Receiving the maximum 5 stars in every category: Sound Quality, Ease of Use, Features and Bang for Buck giving it an overall final score of 5 stars and a GearSlutz Gold Award.
Here are some of the key comments from reviewer Arthur Stone:
"The important thing is that in itself the sound was comfortable, clear, and detailed."
"Using just the JFET and Passive settings and around 11 o'clock on the Z-tone I got a sweet, warm tone from a Tele FMT HH into the AXE I/O and out to a Fender Acoustasonic Junior amp. It sounded great."
"The AXE I/O headphone amp is nice (tested with open-backed AKG K702's) and non-fatiguing; good range of level from the 'chunky' dial. No noticeable gain-bunching."
"Re-amping is a key feature of the AXE I/O; in use, the Amp Out circuitry (on jack) has the same attention to detail as the DI input. It is very low noise and grounded. A delight to use."
"I had a sense that the designers had envisioned the studio connectivity problems faced by guitarists and eased the path to unleash god-like axe powers in the DAW era."
"There was plentiful and effortless clean gain with a slightly creamy character. Not too clean. Not harsh. No distortion. The SM58 sounded good through the AXE I/O."
"The sound quality for tracking/creating was notable: good definition, dynamics, and differentiation between sources."
"Even if guitar isn't your primary concern the AXE I/O is still worth considering: the mic inputs are on the rear so it offers a streamlined fascia on the desktop. A synth or keyboard can be DI'd, also there's the re-amping capability to run hardware effects loops for mojo'ing-up ITB tracks."
And the final verdict was:
"Very, very good. Both the hardware and software have real value: the AXE I/O is a fine guitar interface with high-quality sound, and the software conveys the mojo of playing a real amp."
5 out of 5 - Sound Quality
5 out of 5 - Ease of Use
5 out of 5 - Features
5 out of 5 - Bang for Buck
5 out of 5 - Overall Score
AXE I/O receives Gearslutz 5-Star Gold Award