Audio problems: old interfaces, garbled audio into Live etc

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
Post Reply
tedlogan
Posts: 1343
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:23 pm
Location: Leamington Spa, UK
Contact:

Audio problems: old interfaces, garbled audio into Live etc

Post by tedlogan » Sat Dec 08, 2018 1:38 pm

I used to have a pretty trouble-free experience with Live through the years, but lately it's been frustrating due to constant crashes and audio interface failure.

I've been using an Edirol UA-25 since around 2004 and a Pod HD desktop since around 2013. The UA25's ASIO driver crashes randomly now (though I've since stopped sharing it with Windows sound - something that was never a problem before across three PCs the last 14 years) and I THINK it's a bit better now. It's very time-consuming testing these things. Sometimes it crashes so hard Live cannot find the device again even after PC restart. The Pod is mainly for guitar recording, but also a backup audio interface. This sometimes suddenly jumps out of sync with Live if used as the latter - never crashes - but suddenly it would gain a lot of latency. Turning it on/off solves it.

The current problem I'm focused on is a new one to me - The Edirol, seemingly stable-ish, can only feed what sounds like very garbled 2-bit audio into audio channels, or Live is not communicating correctly with the Edirol. Direct monitor through the UA25 sounds fine - mics and line inputs. It is specifically when monitoring the sound from an armed Live audio track that i hear this foul 2-bit garble. I've checked audio prefs - sample rate is the same as switch on back of interface (48khz), tried another audio rate, UA25 Advanced mode is on, swapped USB cables, swapped USB ports, reinstalled driver multiple times. The crashes were happening for a while now, but this is totally new. I hope I'm missing something very trivial and obvious and that I'm a massive idiot, but perhaps it has finally become defective properly, and I need to upgrade interface. Just to be clear - everything else in Live with the UA25 is fine - MIDI tracks, real-time playing, etc - it's just audio track monitoring.

Note that the same mic/line inputs record fine with no garble if using the Pod HD interface.

I'm eyeing a Scarlett 2i4 2nd gen, but not sure if these ASIO issues will persist, and if my PC might be to blame too. It's such a ballache to eliminate the source of these problems. Maybe just go with a damn RME and get rock-solid drivers and stuff. I don't know. Maybe the UA25 is simply too old with very old drivers that are not updated to keep up with OS systems etc.
Any assistance would be appreciated!

Live 10.0.5
i7 5820k (overclocked a little bit from 3.3 to 3.8 )
32 GB RAM
gtx 980 ti
500GB Samsung EVO SSD
Windows 8.1 (did not update for free last year to 10 because UA25 does not work properly on 10)
Push 2 (lovely jitter on some encoders)
APC40 but almost never turned on
Edirol UA25
Pod HD desktop
other USB devices plugged in at all times:
Wacom Intuos 4 pen tablet
Seagate USB 3 external 4TB HDD
a little mouse
a keyboard

Another weird thing! Is it normal from drum rack return channels to have a lot of latency? This is new to me too! haha, and my one Tannoy monitor speaker has failed as well, though the repair should be trivial.
Ah yes, the apC40 has ... knob jitter ... overall.

As I just got back into recording music in the last month after some years away, this is not ideal.

jestermgee
Posts: 3449
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:38 am
Contact:

Re: Audio problems: old interfaces, garbled audio into Live etc

Post by jestermgee » Sat Dec 08, 2018 11:03 pm

Hey Ted

I have a UA-25 on my second developer machine which runs Win10. You are correct that they don't do drivers for Win10 but I made a simple change to the installation ini files which now make it a win 10 driver version and seems to work just fine. Tried the same thing on my Presonus Firebox and it was detected and "seemed" to work but kept having dropouts which could have been due to the firewire drivers for the MOBO or something. Not sure.

Not sure if I can help you as it does sound strange but I can say Edirol was absorbed into Roland and I have a Roland Octacapture on my main system and I have all manner of troubles with the ASIO driver on that piece of sh%#. The ASIO driver side of things simply stops working sometimes and this can even be when I have first switched on the PC. The audio interface stays powered on (because as I said, its a POS) and it seems internally the driver just stops though in windows everything appears to be working but load any application that needs ASIO and it says the audio interface doesn't exist tho the control software says it does but the samplerate will be locked. It needs to be powered off and on physically a few times to get it going again and if DAW crashes, it has to be done again as the driver gets locked.

I never had any of these issues with my Firebox (apart from it being locked after a DAW crash but that is normal). Could be something in your actual unit.

Have you tried ruining the interface at 44.1 as a test?
What about testing it using the WMD drivers (as crap and high latency as that would be) just to see if it is an ASIO driver issue or not?
Last option would be another PC. If you need the Win10 driver let me know.

fishmonkey
Posts: 4103
Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2007 4:50 am

Re: Audio problems: old interfaces, garbled audio into Live etc

Post by fishmonkey » Sun Dec 09, 2018 9:44 am

jestermgee wrote: Not sure if I can help you as it does sound strange but I can say Edirol was absorbed into Roland and I have a Roland Octacapture on my main system and I have all manner of troubles with the ASIO driver on that piece of sh%#. The ASIO driver side of things simply stops working sometimes and this can even be when I have first switched on the PC. The audio interface stays powered on (because as I said, its a POS) and it seems internally the driver just stops though in windows everything appears to be working but load any application that needs ASIO and it says the audio interface doesn't exist tho the control software says it does but the samplerate will be locked. It needs to be powered off and on physically a few times to get it going again and if DAW crashes, it has to be done again as the driver gets locked.
that sucks, especially as Roland Octa-Captures are rock solid on Macs...
badbrainz wrote: I'm a drummer, so I'm already at an intellectual disadvantage here

tedlogan
Posts: 1343
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:23 pm
Location: Leamington Spa, UK
Contact:

Re: Audio problems: old interfaces, garbled audio into Live etc

Post by tedlogan » Mon Dec 10, 2018 8:48 am

jestermgee wrote:Hey Ted

I have a UA-25 on my second developer machine which runs Win10. You are correct that they don't do drivers for Win10 but I made a simple change to the installation ini files which now make it a win 10 driver version and seems to work just fine. Tried the same thing on my Presonus Firebox and it was detected and "seemed" to work but kept having dropouts which could have been due to the firewire drivers for the MOBO or something. Not sure.

Not sure if I can help you as it does sound strange but I can say Edirol was absorbed into Roland and I have a Roland Octacapture on my main system and I have all manner of troubles with the ASIO driver on that piece of sh%#. The ASIO driver side of things simply stops working sometimes and this can even be when I have first switched on the PC. The audio interface stays powered on (because as I said, its a POS) and it seems internally the driver just stops though in windows everything appears to be working but load any application that needs ASIO and it says the audio interface doesn't exist tho the control software says it does but the samplerate will be locked. It needs to be powered off and on physically a few times to get it going again and if DAW crashes, it has to be done again as the driver gets locked.

I never had any of these issues with my Firebox (apart from it being locked after a DAW crash but that is normal). Could be something in your actual unit.

Have you tried ruining the interface at 44.1 as a test?
What about testing it using the WMD drivers (as crap and high latency as that would be) just to see if it is an ASIO driver issue or not?
Last option would be another PC. If you need the Win10 driver let me know.
Hiya Jester

Yes, I have tried running in 44.1 khz too(i should have stuck with that since 14 years ago, but for no good reason started projects in 48khz all these years, so just stuck with it), still the same problems. I have been running the MME/DirectX/WMD drivers during the last year (i just remembered i have actually been using live a bit to mix some soundtrack stuff for animations) with little to no crashes, but no real-time playing due to latency.

This weekend I cleaned the whole studio area, vaccuumed etc, lots of dust nearer the back of the PC, ran CCleaner which found about 700 registry entries that were invalid, got rid of stuff like Trusteer Rapport (online banking crap). My PC and Live do start noticeably faster now, but i still get regular dropouts - as in the device stops responding, in Live or any audio in Windows with the UA. I have however found a workflow that works for now - I have both the Pod and the UA25 switched on, and work with the UA until it stops, sometimes after an hour, other times after loading another set. I simply switch to the Pod in Live as audio interface, unplug the UA25, replug it, wait 3 seconds, then switch back to UA25 in Live. Works every time and I'm used to it by now. Switch to Pod if I need to record guitar or mic stuff (though no phantom power in the pod, but it's ok as my room is terrible so I don't really use the condenser mic much at the moment).

All in all I don't expect the UA25 to work properly after all these years and drivers that have stopped being updated. I just don't want to buy another audio interface and still have problems in case my PC is to blame, but this 3-year old workstation has been and is pretty solid. I guess the obvious thing to do is to test the UA25 on my laptop, which is on Windows 10, so your win10 driver would be most welcome, thanks :)

I am thinking of updating the BIOS. My driver is 3 years old at least. X99-S motherboard. I downloaded the latest driver to USB flashdrive, formatted to FAT32, but some say you shouldn't update the BIOS unless the updates fix something specific that was broken. most of the updates do state system stability and/or improves performance though...i dunno. what the hell do i know.

Cheers !

jestermgee
Posts: 3449
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:38 am
Contact:

Re: Audio problems: old interfaces, garbled audio into Live etc

Post by jestermgee » Mon Dec 10, 2018 10:02 pm

that sucks, especially as Roland Octa-Captures are rock solid on Macs...
Yeah I think it's a simple case of drivers aren't all that well implemented on Windows since a lot of people having similar issues are on the cakewalk forums and having issues with Win 10. Apart from that hiccup which is annoying but easily rectified, it works pretty good otherwise.

Just one other thing to check, make sure it is connected to a USB 2 port. I have issues with audio interfaces on USB3 ports sometimes.

Here is the Win10 driver + the instructions on how to change the Win 8 to Win 10 driver

https://www.dropbox.com/s/htmxxrs2l5s0a ... r.zip?dl=1

Works fine on my other system but no guarantee it will work

tedlogan
Posts: 1343
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 7:23 pm
Location: Leamington Spa, UK
Contact:

Re: Audio problems: old interfaces, garbled audio into Live etc

Post by tedlogan » Mon Dec 10, 2018 10:36 pm

Thank you very much! I'll test it sometime this week I think. In the meantime, for my desktop, I've managed to sort out all the performance problems and crashes and dropouts (not the audio garble thing - though i think that's probably the unit being old and defective), - everything - with the latest ASIO4ALL. I'm very impressed. Whether it drives the Pod or UA25, all smooth sailing, complex sets again with zero crackling, much lower latency possible than on old manufacturer drivers (6ms overall latency/128 buffer compared to 22ms - 40ms/256/512).

Everything is smooth sailing at the moment!

Thanks again

Post Reply