Currently Being ModeratedFeb 8, 2012 10:27 AM (in response to wils12)
MIDI Controller connected either directly via USB or using a MIDI Interface
Audio out from the Mac could be using the Built-In audio outs (using a mini-jack to standard jack or XLR cable, or (better) via a third party audio interface
Currently Being ModeratedFeb 17, 2012 3:42 AM (in response to wils12)
i use Mainstage 2 quite a bit, and over almost 2 years since i first tried Mainstage (1), i'm still learning new things and better ways to upgrade my ever-growing set up. To answer your question, M-Audio makes some audio interfaces on the lower end of pay scale that get the job done... I am however looking into upgrading my M Audio Interface for the purpose of more outputs, and possibly switching to a firewire audio interface.
i currently am using the Fast Track Pro Audio interface, and it retails from $150 used and around $200 new.. at least when i bought it two years ago.
Depending on your needs will ultimately hinder your decision towards a firewire or a USB powered interface. I went USB, because when i'm not playing live music with Mainstage, i'm recording in my studio with Logic, and my firewire is connected to my HUB with my backups and other programs, libraries, sessions, etc.
there are other brands you can compare based on your DAW of choice. Just walk into a music store, or check out one of the many pro audio websites.
hope that helps