usb or firewire for audio interface?

Configure and optimize you computer for Audio.
mykvr
KVRer
27 posts since 24 Nov, 2006

Post Tue Feb 18, 2020 8:03 am

hi all, I've been out of the game for a while and the last DAW I built was circa 2010 with a firewire Presonus audio interface. Started playing around with it again lately, updated all software, drivers, etc, and no surprise at this point that the thing is sucking wind. So besides a new daw PC I also want to get a new audio interface and was wondering if it still holds true that firewire is the way to go for these things, or has USB 3.0 taken over as best route? TIA for any info. P.S. If the applications matter towards the correct answer - I use Cubase, NI Komplete and a bunch of other VST's for the most part. Not too much audio recording at all but I do use some wav's in the form of acidized drum loops.
Thanks again.

Meffy
Skunk Mod
21321 posts since 10 Jun, 2004 from Pony Pasture

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Tue Feb 18, 2020 8:24 am

Years ago I switched to a new PC and wanted to keep my ancient M-Audio audio interface. After several tries I was unable to get a Firewire card that worked in Windows, possibly because drivers are nearly impossible to find. So I abandoned it and went with USB 2.0 (at the time almost no USB3 audio interfaces were available).

You might have better luck, but in your place I'd definitely avoid the antiquated Firewire standard.

I don't think the software you use will have any bearing on the choice. If Windows recognizes the device driver, it should work with whatever application software you choose.

Disclaimer: I'm not an expert at these matters. Someone more knowledgeable might have information better than mine.

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Forgotten
KVRAF
10085 posts since 15 Apr, 2019 from Nowhere

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Tue Feb 18, 2020 8:58 am

FireWire was once a faster alternative to USB, but as Meffy says, it’s kind of been left at the wayside now, so USB is probably a much safer bet.

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Pictus
KVRist
353 posts since 21 Aug, 2017 from Brasil

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:32 pm

Check the chart for latency performance
https://www.gearslutz.com/board/showpos ... count=3210

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toonertik
KVRAF
2290 posts since 15 Feb, 2017 from a worn out vinyl groove

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:37 pm

I'm using an old E-MU PCI card...


next update would be a PCI-x RME comes to mind.. or Lynx, beat USB_anyFlavour ;)

Eauson
KVRian
946 posts since 9 Jan, 2013 from morf

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:05 pm

Ive still got a maudio sc on a wn7 machine, I think it was a Texas instruments FireWire that was needed. Drivers were available.
Man is least himself when he talks in the first person. Give him a mask, and he'll show you his true face

lfm
KVRAF
5238 posts since 22 Jan, 2005 from Sweden

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Tue Feb 18, 2020 10:50 pm

I tested 2010 as I bought a new computer, my current i7 on windows 7.
One from Focusrite Pro 40 and TC Electronic Impact twin.
After 3 months I abandoned the idea, switching drivers, cables and cards
- I could not get as low latency as my former rme hammerfall based daw
- cpu was redicuolus - and using up 8% of cpu just keeping audio up
- cable connectors were very sensitive for slight bend and cables stiff

As I started it was 60% on one core, and after switching to legacy drivers it became 20% one core, meaning 8 core average 8% on machine - just keeping audio up.

Ancient technology kind of, at least on windows.
From what I understand Mac is better as they often had fw interface as standard.

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AsPeeXXXVIII
KVRian
542 posts since 17 Aug, 2015 from Finland

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Wed Feb 19, 2020 4:59 am

I'm with the people suggesting USB. FireWire is sort of dead.
"Creativity is a lot like sex. When it's spontaneous, it's good, but forcing it makes it bad."
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codec_spurt
KVRAF
4096 posts since 21 Sep, 2005

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:38 am

wrong
Last edited by codec_spurt on Tue Feb 25, 2020 2:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

codec_spurt
KVRAF
4096 posts since 21 Sep, 2005

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Wed Feb 19, 2020 6:56 am

wrong
Last edited by codec_spurt on Tue Feb 25, 2020 2:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Tj Shredder
KVRAF
3980 posts since 6 Jan, 2017 from Outer Space

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Mon Feb 24, 2020 7:13 am

If you are going to get a new interface go USB, firewire is out of the game, though I still use happily my old interfaces. Another option is AVB which is supported by the MotU family for example... Macs have built-in AVB support. Its a network technology which allows networks of audio connections via ethernet... Most likely not a hobbyist solution though...

legendCNCD
KVRian
849 posts since 23 Sep, 2004 from there

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Tue Feb 25, 2020 4:19 am

PCIe. Usb only with RME. :)
but that maybe only me...
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Tj Shredder
KVRAF
3980 posts since 6 Jan, 2017 from Outer Space

Re: usb or firewire for audio interface?

Post Sat Mar 07, 2020 2:56 am

I would never get a sound card sitting inside a computer (for obvious reasons...). External USB is fast enough, reliable, doesn‘t need drivers and is compatible with the whole world. Why longing for trouble?

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