Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Anything about hardware musical instruments.
starflakeprj
KVRian
887 posts since 28 Feb, 2015

Post Mon Jan 14, 2019 12:46 pm

deastman wrote:
Wed Dec 26, 2018 9:18 am
If you don’t want to pay RME prices, I’ve always found MOTU to be really solid. There’s also that Arturia box, although I’ve never heard of anyone actually using one aside from YouTubers who probably got them for free.
I have the Arturia AudioFuse, but I wouldn't buy it again. As I haven't had the possibility to test it with other hardware, I'm not sure it's my interface or my computer which is the problem.

I'm routing my Windows system audio through my AudioFuse and when watching (for instance) a YouTube video and in the same time working in any of my DAWs, the sound can suddenly drop and the video stops playing. The sound keeps playing in my DAW, but to get the sound back from my system (may be any other non-ASIO application) I need to power off the AudioFuse and power it on again.

This seem to happen sometimes when the CPU load rises (does not have to spike), but it can also happen just when switching applications, or opening another tab in Chrome.

My old Roland QUAD-CAPTURE UA-55 did not act like this, and it is an old interface that cost 1/3 of what AudioFuse cost. Arturia is not much of a help, just the "standard" tips on how to optimize. They won't listen when I tell them I didn't have any troubles similar to this with my old interface, on the same hardware (and Windows 10 Pro 64-bit), with drivers and a firmware from 2014.

It seems like AudioFuse more or less is abandoned when it comes to drivers and firmwares. It has been on the market for a year or so, but the latest firmware was released in July 2018, and the software in September 2018.
Intel Core i7-4930K @ 4.1GHz | 64GB DDR3 | 3 x Nvidia GTX 780 | Windows 10 Pro 64-bit | Arturia AudioFuse | M-Audio Code61
Studio One 4.1 | Reason 10.2 | Bitwig Studio 2.4 | Reaper 5.95 | Renoise 3.1 | FL Studio 20 | 460+ VSTs | 170+ Rack Extensions

JCJR
KVRAF
2557 posts since 17 Apr, 2005 from S.E. TN

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:11 pm

I'm routing my Windows system audio through my AudioFuse and when watching (for instance) a YouTube video and in the same time working in any of my DAWs, the sound can suddenly drop and the video stops playing.
I can't recall whether I had win10 youtube vs DAW occasional soundcard hangs when I was using the Firewire Focusrite Pro24. I think maybe it sometimes happened but it was a year ago and that brain cell already died. :)

For the last year been using Behringer XR18 digital mixer as audio interface. I'm quite happy with the mixer sound quality and features and also the audio interface sound quality. Maybe a lower-latency interface could be found but I get by fine with the XR18 and switching to the digital mixer with built-in interface allowed me to get rid of massive amounts of spaghetti, snakes, and patch bay points that were needed to wire the previous analog mixer to the Pro24. And getting rid of all that spaghetti I think reduced likelihood of low-level hums and noise as well, all those snakes between the analog mixer, patch bays and the Pro24. And gives fancier EQ on every mixer channel, fairly nice compressor/gate on each channel as needed, etc.

Anyway, apologies drifting off topic-- Just wanted to say I do occasionally get XR18 Win10 hangs switching between DAW or Stereo Editor programs vs playback in Firefox Youtube or sometimes consumer Media Player apps.

I will leave the computer running for days and I would usually get such program-switching audio hangups after the computer had been up for awhile running both FIrefox and the DAW for days. Running media players and youtube on the Windows sound part of the driver and running DAW or stereo editor on ASIO. But the computer will put up with it for days before audio misbehaving.

I suspect this has started happening more the fault of windows 10 than the fault of the audio interface or drivers but dunno. I virtually always run DAW and Stereo Editor 44.1k 24 bit ASIO, and sometimes modern Win10 consumer sound apps I've noticed them trying to run at 96k either 16 or 24 bit, or other weird settings. The win10 sound system is supposed to automatically resample all disagreeing apps into whatever the soundcard runs at (except of course ASIO which bypasses win10 sound manager or whatever they call it nowadays).

I think this radical disagreement about samplerate and possibly bitdepth is what occasionally throws a crowbar in the audio gears switching between DAW and consumer audio programs.

HOWEVER, I DID FIND A WORKAROUND which for several weeks seems to have banished the occasional audio hangs-- And it is very simple-- When I want to use the DAW I first always MINIMIZE the browser and any other consumer audio apps that might be running, and then click the DAW in the taskbar to make its windows visible.

Similarly, when I want to use the browser audio or other consumer audio apps, I almays MINIMIZE the DAW before making the browser or the consumer audio app visible.

Maybe it isn't really a solid fix but it has seemed to work for several weeks. Minimizing an app lets the app ASIO handler or windows sound handlers free up some resources/connections, so that the minimized app is less likely to fight another app for control when you bring the other app to the foreground.

boombaxx
KVRist
253 posts since 10 Mar, 2005

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:07 am

I have the focusrite 18i6 and it goes batshit from time to time. Pretty sure it's driver issues they never updated the beta driver that was ages ago. Which is really rather poor considering the price to not even bother to finish the driver

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justin3am
KVRAF
10630 posts since 7 May, 2006 from Southern California

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:50 am

I've been a big fan of MOTU for a number of years. I've had an original 828, 828mk2, 828mk3 hybrid and now I use a 16A. I've never used them in Windows (I hear their drivers aren't great on that side) but in OSX, they have all been very solid and the older devices all work in macOS 10.14. Well, I've only tested the 828mk2, I'm not sure if I have the original anymore... but still the 828mk2 was released in 2004, that's 15 years and I can still use that interface on modern machines.

I'm also a big fan of class complaint USB Audio devices, when I need something simple (4in/4out or less). It's nice not needing to install third-party drivers.

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egbert101
KVRAF
2289 posts since 13 Jun, 2014

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Fri Jan 18, 2019 10:25 am

If these haven't already been mentioned:

Sound Devices MixPre-M Audio Recorder Series Overview

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TrYH6j1qq-0
<list all your stupid gear here>

Jim Roseberry
KVRist
459 posts since 9 May, 2005

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Fri Jan 18, 2019 10:55 am

If you're looking for a rock-solid audio interface, go with a proven top-performer.
RME's Babyface Pro is absolutely rock-solid.
MOTU audio interfaces are also great solid performers.

Aside from the machine itself, the audio interface is the second most critical choice for a rock-solid DAW.

There are certainly less expensive options... but that often means higher round-trip latency and dealing with drivers that are less than stellar.
Jim Roseberry
Purrrfect Audio
www.studiocat.com
jim@studiocat.com

tapper mike
KVRAF
4952 posts since 20 Jan, 2008

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Sun Jan 20, 2019 10:04 am

I used to have an M-audio box and... it was fair.

With regards to windows and having issues using two separate sound sources at ones... ASIO4All was always the cuplrit.
Windows does make an alternative to standard WMD it's called WaveRT and... it's pretty damn good. However it's not supported by windows and if your host doesn't support it you are sol. I can run WaveRT in Mixcraft, have a separate feed of Stienberg ASIO and WMD for standard audio listening and Stienberg ASIO all at the same time and all coming out of my Yamaha THR10, Matter of fact I can sent them to my monitor screen (smart tv) or my computers audio outs. Never an issue once since I got my dell.

fernee
KVRist
48 posts since 12 Jan, 2019

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:46 pm

I have a Behringer Umc204Hd U-Phoria Usb Audio/Midi Interface With Midas Microphone Preamplifiers, very low latency (they say) an a great bundle with Waveform 8, but I have a problem with the direct windows input, let’s say I get a guitar directly in input 1, I drop a distortion amp plugin, I hear the clean direct guitar AND the distortion plugin in the back, I tried “direct monitor on” in the DAW track, I switched of the “mic” input in the Windows 10 sound settings, and nothing! I can’t get the guitar-effect-output I need....
Any ideas?

pppppppppp
KVRist
109 posts since 25 Oct, 2013

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:16 pm

Bought a RME Babyface nearly 7 years ago, never looked back since. Even today I could sell it for half the price I paid. Definitely the best buy I ever made.
Still maintained wrt drivers and SW.

Do yourself a favor and invest a bit more money for the most crucial thing you need for audio production.. RME will not let you down :party:

fernee
KVRist
48 posts since 12 Jan, 2019

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:37 pm

That’s above the $1,500....
This is a personal project, more like a hobby for me....

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justin3am
KVRAF
10630 posts since 7 May, 2006 from Southern California

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:57 pm

fernee wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:46 pm
I have a Behringer Umc204Hd U-Phoria Usb Audio/Midi Interface With Midas Microphone Preamplifiers, very low latency (they say) an a great bundle with Waveform 8, but I have a problem with the direct windows input, let’s say I get a guitar directly in input 1, I drop a distortion amp plugin, I hear the clean direct guitar AND the distortion plugin in the back, I tried “direct monitor on” in the DAW track, I switched of the “mic” input in the Windows 10 sound settings, and nothing! I can’t get the guitar-effect-output I need....
Any ideas?
Set the Mix knob on the audio interface fully CW (so it's pointing at PB). Don't activate direct monitor in the DAW, just arm the track and you should only hear the sound being processed.

fernee
KVRist
48 posts since 12 Jan, 2019

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Tue Feb 12, 2019 5:42 am

justin3am, I did what you suggested, the Mix knob is fully CW to the PB, I can see the led meter showing the guitar but I don’t hear anything on the phones....
When I hit the record and the guitar is being recorded, passing through the plugin, but to hear it, I have to turn again the mic knob CCW to IN...
If I let the knob at the PB position, I don’t hear anything
Last edited by fernee on Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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rod_zero
KVRAF
2994 posts since 28 Jan, 2011 from MEXICO

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:15 am

fernee wrote:
Mon Feb 11, 2019 4:37 pm
That’s above the $1,500....
This is a personal project, more like a hobby for me....
RME Babyface is around 750.
dedication to flying

User avatar
egbert101
KVRAF
2289 posts since 13 Jun, 2014

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:06 am

I've done a lot of research. I'm going to get the Behringer UMC404HD, because it's very cheap (£90.00) but has great preamps. Not sure why people assume spending thousands on a USB interface is going to make their sound more magical and higher quality.
<list all your stupid gear here>

groumpf
KVRist
81 posts since 7 May, 2002 from France

Re: Lets have real talk about audio interfaces

Post Tue Feb 12, 2019 12:50 pm

Just to say I'm satisfied with a FireStudio Mobile Presonus (firewire) which is bit old now but have a lot of inputs for such small interface.
I can't see a recent alternative for 200€ with the same features and with a lot of line inputs for the synths. I don't understand why they can't add many line inputs. I don't care mic inputs.

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