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Are you successfully using your AX8 via s/pdif?

gdgross

Experienced
Never done it with a focusrite interface, but with my apogee i need to set the clock source to coax spdif. otherwise they clocks aren't in lock step and i get pops as well.
 

Will Chen

Inspired
This thread made me try out SPDIF last night with my ESI MAYA44. Unfortunately, not sure if others cards are the same, but the D/A happens post latency so even at minimal settings things felt different and then I couldn't get my reaper project stable due to some of the large VSTi's I use. Much prefer using the analog outs and my sound card's direct monitoring and upping my soundcard latency to keep reaper more stable.
 

AJ Vargas

Inspired
Good to know I'm not the only one.
Are you on firmware 8.02?
Me too.

I have the exact same problem with my new Scarlett 18i20 Gen2. With my Mbox 3, S/PDIF sync was not a problem (same Macbook Pro same OS (Sierra), Q 0.02). But with the 18i20, I can get it to sync no matter what I try, but... the one thing I discovered is that when everything is hooked I turned the tuner on and suddenly the thing synced!!! Once I passed audio the lock was broken... :mad:

I know the quality of S/PDIF vs Analog Out is pretty much the same, but i'd like to work with S/PDIF for it's convenience as it's one stage less of A/D D/A for tracking/reamping.

UPDATE: IT IS DEFINITELY THE AX8.

I hooked my TC Electronic Nova System (also at 48KHz) with the same cable and all, and locks/syncs just fine, so it's something with the AX8. Hope @joe rogers and/or @FractalAudio chime in and take a look at this.
 
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PhillyGTR

Member
If you are able to, what's your audio interface and which operating system are you on? If you're unable, same question?

The reason I ask (and have posted about it before) is that I am unable to use mine successfully via s/pdif hooked up to a NI Komplete Audio 6, on anything from El Capitan to Sierra, on multiple Macs. In a nutshell, Audio MIDI Setup thinks it's getting 44.1k from my AX8 when I select External Sync, and there appears to be nothing I can do to change that.

Just trying to see if this is something that's unique to my unit, or a problem with the KA6, or something else entirely (including user error). A user in a recent thread had s/pdif problems with the Focusrite Pro 40 and Scarlett 18i20, but was successful with an Mbox Pro 3. What's your experience?
I use an Apogee Rosetta -> MOTU 828mk2 -> Logic X (OSX 10.9.4)
I flip the Rosetta to 48k and set the MOTU to sync to S/PDIF input. Logic settings are 48k also of course. It's always worked flawlessly for me. The analog outputs on the AX-8, both XLR and 1/4" sound great, so using the digital out is a matter of convenience due to less patching.
 

ratsgym

Inspired
I use a Presonus Studio 192 into a Mac Mini OSX 10.12.6. Never had any issue with any Presonus Studios running the AX8 through SPDIF.
 

Geoff

Member
i've used Ax8 and SPDIF into Presonus FirestudioMobile on El Capitan and it works just fine for me.

You should do an official support request to Fractal if still having problems.
 

Tone_Loc

Member
Any updates with this?
Me too.

I have the exact same problem with my new Scarlett 18i20 Gen2. With my Mbox 3, S/PDIF sync was not a problem (same Macbook Pro same OS (Sierra), Q 0.02). But with the 18i20, I can get it to sync no matter what I try, but... the one thing I discovered is that when everything is hooked I turned the tuner on and suddenly the thing synced!!! Once I passed audio the lock was broken... :mad:

I know the quality of S/PDIF vs Analog Out is pretty much the same, but i'd like to work with S/PDIF for it's convenience as it's one stage less of A/D D/A for tracking/reamping.

UPDATE: IT IS DEFINITELY THE AX8.

I hooked my TC Electronic Nova System (also at 48KHz) with the same cable and all, and locks/syncs just fine, so it's something with the AX8. Hope @joe rogers and/or @FractalAudio chime in and take a look at this.
 
Seems like we're at an impasse with this... Most devices work with the AX8's spdif, some don't. Strangely, it seems like even within the same brand, some do and some don't, like the Scarlett 18i20 that seems to be pretty much incompatible. And alas, my Komplete Audio 6 falls into that category too, which is a bummer cause I specifically got it so I could have that extra channel 5 & 6 to hook up the AX8.

For whoever is interested in getting an interface and using the spdif with their AX8, I thought I'd summarize this thread here. Not a complete list obviously, but the findings of this thread so far. EDIT: I do want to stress that these are isolated experiences from users on this thread, and you may get different results on your system (I'll update this list if anyone else posts their findings):

Reported to work with s/pdif:
Focusrite Saffire Pro 14
Focusrite Scarlett 6i6
MOTU Ultra Lite
MOTU 828Mk2
ESI - U24 XL
SPL Crimson
UAD Apollo 8
UAD Apollo Twin
Behringer FCA1616
Presonus Firestudio Mobile
Presonus Studio 192
Mbox Pro 3
Apogee Ensemble
Audient iD22 (with coax to opto adapter)
Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 (on Windows)

Potentially problematic:
Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 (on Mac)
Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 (EDIT: on Mac)
Focusrite Saffire Pro 40
 
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bloodninja

Inspired
Seems like we're at an impasse with this... Most devices work with the AX8's spdif, some don't. Strangely, it seems like even within the same brand, some do and some don't, like the Scarlett 18i20 that seems to be pretty much incompatible. And alas, my Komplete Audio 6 falls into that category too, which is a bummer cause I specifically got it so I could have that extra channel 5 & 6 to hook up the AX8.

For whoever is interested in getting an interface and using the spdif with their AX8, I thought I'd summarize this thread here. Not a complete list obviously, but the findings of this thread so far:

COMPATIBLE:
Focusrite Saffire Pro 14
Focusrite Scarlett 6i6
MOTU Ultra Lite
MOTU 828Mk2
ESI - U24 XL
SPL Crimson
UAD Apollo 8
UAD Apollo Twin
Behringer FCA1616
Presonus Firestudio Mobile
Presonus Studio 192
Mbox Pro 3
Apogee Ensemble
Audient iD22 (with coax to opto adapter)

INCOMPATIBLE:
Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6
Focusrite Scarlett 18i20
Focusrite Saffire Pro 40
I have spdif working with my AX8 and Reaper on Windows 8.1
 

ChristThePhone

Fractal Fanatic
I don't think the available data allows to put together this list. As mentioned before I do successfully use an NI Komplete 6. There are obviously more conditions that influence a successful connection than what your list implies.
 
I don't think the available data allows to put together this list. As mentioned before I do successfully use an NI Komplete 6. There are obviously more conditions that influence a successful connection than what your list implies.
I think you're right. Maybe I should amend my post to say that in this limited sampling, there are problems reported with the KA6 on Mac but good results on Windows. The Scarlett 18i20 seems more problematic across the board though, again based on this limited sampling. But your point is well taken. I should make it clear that these are individual experiences and that they aren't necessarily universally true.
 

Brian Vassallo

New Member
Using s/pdif with ESI - U24 XL on my Macbook Pro with latest OS X. No issues at all.
Using s/pdif with ESI - U24 XL on my Macbook Pro with latest OS X. No issues at all.
Hello Johan, I would appreciate if you can please assist me, as I have just bought an U24XL interface, and bought a coaxial cable for digital connection between my interface here going into my DAT-30 Tascam. The Tascam is set to 48khz, but it keeps changing to 44khz. In the U24XL software, all things are set to 48khz even my Logic DAW. But still. If You can please help me figure this out. Any instructions and advice really appreciated as I am losing the enthusiasm for this device. BEST / brian
 

Johan Allard

Power User
Hello Johan, I would appreciate if you can please assist me, as I have just bought an U24XL interface, and bought a coaxial cable for digital connection between my interface here going into my DAT-30 Tascam. The Tascam is set to 48khz, but it keeps changing to 44khz. In the U24XL software, all things are set to 48khz even my Logic DAW. But still. If You can please help me figure this out. Any instructions and advice really appreciated as I am losing the enthusiasm for this device. BEST / brian
That sounds like it would be something for Tascam support if it keeps changing. My understanding of spdif is that it’s just a bit stream and we have to configure each device to pickup the stream correctly. i.e. there’s nothing in spdif that sends any form of metadata like: “currently sending 48khz 16bit” so we can’t just plug it in and have it work automatically. So if the U24XL is picking up the data correctly, it’s doing it’s job and the problem would lie elsewhere.
 

Brian Vassallo

New Member
That sounds like it would be something for Tascam support if it keeps changing. My understanding of spdif is that it’s just a bit stream and we have to configure each device to pickup the stream correctly. i.e. there’s nothing in spdif that sends any form of metadata like: “currently sending 48khz 16bit” so we can’t just plug it in and have it work automatically. So if the U24XL is picking up the data correctly, it’s doing it’s job and the problem would lie elsewhere.
Thanks, Johan, for coming back. I have pulled out a second Tascam that I had and the same results, however, I discovered that from the U24XL panel, when changing the sample rates, the 32khz and the 44khz change accordingly on my TASCAM. It's just the 48khz that it shows for a split second and then jumps back t 44khz again on my Tascam. The signal is showing on my Tascam meters, so I can guess the digital out of my U24 and the cable work well. However, I noticed that when I highlight DIGITAL from the U24 panel the sound becomes erratic and stuttering, perhaps this has to do with the optical out of the U24? -

Also note: the ESI has a panel software as you know, so even in there 48 is set, and in my DAW and on my MAC Audio, Midi settings. It's just my both TASCAMS not accepting 48 with digital cable hooked in. When the digital slider is set to analogue on my Tascam, no problems there. 48 shows and stays there. BEST/BRIAN
 

Johan Allard

Power User
Thanks, Johan, for coming back. I have pulled out a second Tascam that I had and the same results, however, I discovered that from the U24XL panel, when changing the sample rates, the 32khz and the 44khz change accordingly on my TASCAM. It's just the 48khz that it shows for a split second and then jumps back t 44khz again on my Tascam. The signal is showing on my Tascam meters, so I can guess the digital out of my U24 and the cable work well. However, I noticed that when I highlight DIGITAL from the U24 panel the sound becomes erratic and stuttering, perhaps this has to do with the optical out of the U24? -

Also note: the ESI has a panel software as you know, so even in there 48 is set, and in my DAW and on my MAC Audio, Midi settings. It's just my both TASCAMS not accepting 48 with digital cable hooked in. When the digital slider is set to analogue on my Tascam, no problems there. 48 shows and stays there. BEST/BRIAN
No worries, the only time I’ve heard any weirdness is when there’s been a mismatch in frequency with the U24. I never use the U24 control software, I only ever look in the Mac Audio/Midi settings panel and make sure it’s set to 48khz digital there and it’s always worked brilliantly.
 

Brian Vassallo

New Member
No worries, the only time I’ve heard any weirdness is when there’s been a mismatch in frequency with the U24. I never use the U24 control software, I only ever look in the Mac Audio/Midi settings panel and make sure it’s set to 48khz digital there and it’s always worked brilliantly.
Yes, it's a very good clear sound, I sometimes think that this unit deserves more attention. Regarding my tech query, was thinking that perhaps continuing to record at 44khz via my digital connection, which works fine, is a very good idea after all.
Thanks Johan once again - You can google my name .com for the hope that we meet online as links are not allowed here it seems.

BEST
BRIAN
 

AJ Vargas

Inspired
For the Scarlett 18i20 with Mac users:

Just stumbled upon this https://us.focusrite.com/downloads?product=Scarlett+18i20 It's a new revision of their firmware, just released earlier this month, and this are the notes that come with it:

Changes since last release:

  • Change to fix an issue that could cause Focusrite Control to not correctly update the clock source on a device on machines running High Sierra (macOS 10.13)
Hope it helps, and if you're lucky, share your experience with us. I'm still having trouble with it...
 

Rex Shawn

New Member
I really hope someone can give me the answer! thank you! i'm wondering if i plug ax8's spdif out to my apollo twin's optical in, is that able to be direct monitor? meaning i dont need to use DAW that I can get the sound directly from monitor which connect to my apollo twin's output?
 
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