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YammerUK

Plugging into DAW with USB

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I'm just getting back into DAW recording and VSTs after a 15 year gap, so I'm a bit rusty. I used Orion Pro and Ableton Live back in the day.

 

I just tried to plug my Helix LT into my PC using USB, after installing the latest Helix Edit and drivers. Everything went on OK, and the Helix shows up, but it appears that my DAW softwares' ASIO settings will only allow one device at once. So, I have to monitor through my Helix/FRFR and not my DAW. Is this correct? And if I don't want to do this, I have to go old school and use Line Out into the sound card?

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1 hour ago, YammerUK said:

I'm just getting back into DAW recording and VSTs after a 15 year gap, so I'm a bit rusty. I used Orion Pro and Ableton Live back in the day.

 

I just tried to plug my Helix LT into my PC using USB, after installing the latest Helix Edit and drivers. Everything went on OK, and the Helix shows up, but it appears that my DAW softwares' ASIO settings will only allow one device at once. So, I have to monitor through my Helix/FRFR and not my DAW. Is this correct? And if I don't want to do this, I have to go old school and use Line Out into the sound card?


Good morning to sunny Manchester,

 

Hey up - use your Helix to monitor and you’ll have zero latency. That’s the whole point, because if you use software monitoring you will experience lots of nasty artefacts - that way lays madness! 
 

No, simply use your Helix USB in and out for an easy life. For example my Helix floor unit sends processed guitar audio to Logic Pro X on USB 1&2 and the dry signal on USB 7, so that can be used to re-amp if I want to. My Tannoy Reveal 805s are connected to the Helix XLR output sockets and they playback the stuff from the DAW along with the Helix audio - no latency. Your Helix LT becomes your sound card. 
 

Result - happiness!

 

Hope this helps/makes sense
 

 

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Right. So I'm not going mad then. Thanks for confirming that.

 

I just brought my Helix up to my office, where the DAW computer is. It has an M-Audio 24/96 ASIO sound card which drives a pair of brand new active nearfield monitors. Once, I have recorded with the Helix, I will be mixing with the DAW, so I'm not keen to be plugging the monitors into the Helix just to record guitar. I'd need to bring the (25kg/54lb) FRFR combo up the stairs, from the room I use to practice, just to hear what I'm doing, although I guess I could use my Blackstar Fly mini amp. How embarrassing.

 

Fortunately, the set-up is not permanent, and I'm thinking of moving my office into a bigger room, as part of the dual office/studio set-up. The big amp could come upstairs with the guitars and stuff. Let's hope I never have to take it anywhere.

 

Or, I could just use a pair of 1/4 inch to RCA phono cables, and go straight into the sound card.

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Your M-Audio card is a 4 in 4 out audio card with (S/PDIF - your Helix doesn't have that) and MIDI.

Your Helix is a 8 in 8 out audio card with MIDI.

Use the Helix via USB for everything everywhere and forget about the M-Audio.

Just change the ASIO in the DAW to Helix.

 

If you must have the speakers connected to the computer directly for some reason, just get a small mixer, like a Behringer Xenyx 802.

Hook the speakers to that and take the M-Audio Out to one pair of Line inputs and the Helix Outs to the Other pair. Set the Helix outs to LINE.

 

Make sure everything is on the same power strip/conditioner to prevent ground loops.

 

 

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1 hour ago, rd2rk said:

 

Your M-Audio card is a 4 in 4 out audio card with (S/PDIF - your Helix doesn't have that) and MIDI.

Your Helix is a 8 in 8 out audio card with MIDI.

Use the Helix via USB for everything everywhere and forget about the M-Audio.

Just change the ASIO in the DAW to Helix.

 

Thanks. The penny is dropping. I'm slowly getting the idea that the Helix is to act as *the* DAW's audio interface, with the monitors connected directly to the interface's own line outs. I could theoretically bin the DAW's sound card.


BUT, this requires that the Helix stays with the DAW whenever I do *any* recording/mixing/monitoring (in fact, any audio at all), UNLESS...

 

1 hour ago, rd2rk said:

If you must have the speakers connected to the computer directly for some reason, just get a small mixer, like a Behringer Xenyx 802.

Hook the speakers to that and take the M-Audio Out to one pair of Line inputs and the Helix Outs to the Other pair. Set the Helix outs to LINE.

 

That would enable the DAW to work without the Helix, but I can't help think it would just be a lot simpler/easier (and cheaper) to just send those Helix Line Outs straight to the sound card in the first place. :-D

 

In my case, the DAW is a meaty 'tower' PC, with physical connections to monitors, ethernet and printers. The Helix is very much a portable unit. I guess I could just unplug everything every time it leaves the room, and reconnect every time I do anything involving audio, but I'm sure you can appreciate why I wouldn't be keen.

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23 minutes ago, YammerUK said:


BUT, this requires that the Helix stays with the DAW whenever I do *any* recording/mixing/monitoring (in fact, any audio at all), UNLESS...

 

 

That would enable the DAW to work without the Helix, but I can't help think it would just be a lot simpler/easier (and cheaper) to just send those Helix Line Outs straight to the sound card in the first place. :-D

 

In my case, the DAW is a meaty 'tower' PC, with physical connections to monitors, ethernet and printers. The Helix is very much a portable unit. I guess I could just unplug everything every time it leaves the room, and reconnect every time I do anything involving audio, but I'm sure you can appreciate why I wouldn't be keen.

 

I went through this when I got my Helix going back 4 years or so and ended up dumping my interface and just using the Helix as it's so much more functional as far as the workflow.  I ended up buying a second Helix floor just for he studio so I could keep my gigging Helix separate and always have a backup if I need it.

To me it totally simplified my workflow in the studio by allowing me to keep everything plugged in all the time to that Helix and simply switch to a different preset depending on the instrument/voice I'm using, arm and record.  This goes into my main computer which, like yours, is the center of everything I do including networking with the other laptops and devices and so forth.  I just have my studio Helix and the studio monitors controlled by a furman power conditioner, so if I'm not doing studio work they're turned off and I only turn them on when I need to use audio for some reason...which honestly outside of studio work is fairly limited.

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Have you considered using your DAW soundcard with the Helix Native plugin? When doing a significant recording session use Helix as your audio interface. Record a dry guitar signal along with a Helix-processed signal simultaneously if desired. Thereafter you can arrange and produce your song/tones using the dry signal and Helix Native without needing Helix. The Helix and Helix Native presets are transferable so when your song is finished you can use the same preset for live performance.

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Thanks, everyone. I'll just stick to the old wheel. I'll reinvent it next month.

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