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aaronbrito

Help with Audio interface setup

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Been recording with the Line 6 helix as my primary audio interface.

 

Works ok for guitar parts, with direct monitoring but as soon as I switch to virtual instruments, anything below 256 samples gives me some clicks and pops. 256 samples has a latency of around 8-9 ms.

 

I have been considering getting an Audient ID14. Questions:

1. Will this improve the latency situation for use with Virtual instruments? (soft synths, kontakt etc....)

2. How do I connect the Helix to the SPDIF in on the Audient?

3. Will I have to keep changing the sample rate on the Audient when moving from Helix recording to VI recording etc. etc.?

4. Will I have to connect the Helix both via a line out and via SPDIF to acheive reamping functionality?

 

I also welcome suggestions for other interfaces. 300 USD max please...

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From what you've described I'm not sure the problem you're hearing is related to the audio interface as much as it is the configuration of the buffer size in the ASIO driver in your DAW.  That's what I normally associate clicks and pops with.  Before spending money on a new interface it may be worth seeing if lowering the buffer size might fix it given you have enough computer processing power to spare.

 

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22 minutes ago, DunedinDragon said:

From what you've described I'm not sure the problem you're hearing is related to the audio interface as much as it is the configuration of the buffer size in the ASIO driver in your DAW.  That's what I normally associate clicks and pops with.  Before spending money on a new interface it may be worth seeing if lowering the buffer size might fix it given you have enough computer processing power to spare.

 

 

I will be trying to experiment with this later today...just posted this in case there is no other option and I need to get an interface...from what I've been reading though...the Audient could have similar latency?...

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I doubt 256 samples on the Helix is really 8-9 miliseconds

Even RME can't do that

 

I have been compiling a chart of real, measured Round Trip Latency figures. I should have the Firehawk numbers of tomorrow. Line 6 drivers are good, but they aren't magical.

 

http://kailuamusicschool.com/tech/round-trip-latency-roundup/

 

If you are using a DAW which shows you PDC per plug, be sure to check if the virtual instruments you are using require more than 256 samples of PDC. You can't lower your buffer lower than the most latent plug needs to operate if you are planning on monitoring thru in real time

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6 hours ago, pipelineaudio1 said:

I doubt 256 samples on the Helix is really 8-9 miliseconds

Even RME can't do that

 

I have been compiling a chart of real, measured Round Trip Latency figures. I should have the Firehawk numbers of tomorrow. Line 6 drivers are good, but they aren't magical.

 

http://kailuamusicschool.com/tech/round-trip-latency-roundup/

 

If you are using a DAW which shows you PDC per plug, be sure to check if the virtual instruments you are using require more than 256 samples of PDC. You can't lower your buffer lower than the most latent plug needs to operate if you are planning on monitoring thru in real time

You are right. I was looking at the input latency I believe. Output latency is 48 ms or so..

 

With 64 samples, I get an output latency of 8.4 ms.

 

What I've done now is set the Helix sample rates (both as a playback device and a recording device in Windows) to 48 Khz, 24 bit.

 

I've also set this bit depth in the ASIO control panel for the Helix.

 

In my DAW, studio one, I set the block size to 64 samples, sample rate to 48 Khz and bit depth to 24 bit.

 

I'm running all this from a laptop with i6820HK processor and 32 gigs of RAM.

 

I'm still hearing crackles that go away when the block size is switched to 128 samples. The crackles exist with even one sample instrument loaded.

 

Any other tips/ solutions?

 

 

 

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Have you optimized the computer for audio? There are how-to articles on both the Presonus and Steinberg sites, and elsewhere I'm sure.

Most important optimizations I've found are to use the PERFORMANCE setting in Power Options, and turn off wireless. If you need to be connected use a cable.

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as rd2rk is saying, if its windows, you want to look at the power options on laptops, you definitely don't want the processor speed stepping.

 

For my live and testing laptop, I have custom power plans set. One is the battery saver, and another has the cpu at 100% at all times. Speed stepping is one of those functions that can really have you scratching your head. I use a free program called "Power Plan Switcher" to make it easier on myself, a right click and a left click and you're set.

 

I'm not sure how the Helix drivers work, but there may be configurable safety buffers as well. 

 

Its important to know that reported latency in a DAW is WAY different than measurable round trip latency. The numbers the drivers and the DAW give you are for entertainment purposes only

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Can anyone tell me what the optimal settings for sample rate and bit depth for the helix drivers are?

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If they’re anything like the other line 6 drivers, 44 or 48 will be fine and 16 vs 24 bit makes no appreciable performance difference

 

as usual, it is extremely hard to find basic documentation from line 6, so if you could screen shot your helix asio control panel, I should be able to help you get it set up. 

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FWIW I just updated the chart with both the Pod XT Live and the Firehawk FX. The XT Live absolutely devastates the Firehawk at any given buffer size. Its not good, but the Firehawk is REALLY bad. 15 msec at 64 samples. Hopefully the Helix drivers are better than either of these

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