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MOTUx2 Mac OS LION problems?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by BurningSkies, Dec 17, 2011.


  1. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Hey everyone. I recently was forced to upgrade to a MBP from my 'old' MBP running snow leopard. The new one (quad core, LION) seems to not be playing as nice with my MOTU 8pre units.

    Here's the rig:
    [​IMG]

    Its wired FireWire:
    Top 8pre->Lower 8pre->MBP.
    I've made the aggregate driver as in the past.

    Now I'm getting digital distortion on the lower unit when recording. It happens gradually, building in its nastiness...the first twenty minutes or so has no problems, after that, it gets gritty, distorted and really ugly. From what I gather, this is a 'synch' problem between the units...in Leopard's Aggregate Device setup you just chose 'resample' and it worked fine. In Lion I have 'Drift Correction' selected on the units, which should do the same thing.

    Any words of wisdom, advice, etc? Its only on the lower unit (the middle unit in the daisy chain) and the top unit records clean. I'm not using any Midi at all, just straight audio interface. Everything maps correctly in Cubase, and I can use all inputs and outputs for each unit.

    Any help? I'd like to avoid going to the 'lightpipe' setup.

    :confused:
     
  2. Hactar

    Hactar

    Sep 25, 2011
    Boulder, CO
    Are the MOTU units the exact same?

    If you're only getting sync problems on one unit, that would seem to indicate that the problem is with the unit, not the computer.

    Perhaps your settings differ between units?
     
  3. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Both units are set to 44.1, and have the same 'global' settings? I've been reading conflicting things about the 'drift control' option (what used to be resample). Some saying you need to have it chosen no matter what, some saying that if both units are set for the same sample rate, it needs to be off. Hrrrrrmmmmm.
     
  4. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    A quick look at my old MBP (it crashes after about 1 minute!) shows that my aggregate driver doesn't have 'resample' used on either interface. Hrrrm. Deeper and deeper.
     
  5. fokof

    fokof One day ,I'll be in the future

    Mar 16, 2007
    Here
    There has to be only one word clock master.

    In the "motu audio setup" application , choose the last unit before the CPU as word master , put the other one to "Word clock in" as clock source and link both with a WC cable. (the out of the master to the in of the slave)



    Also , an easier , and trouble-less way to use your setup , would be to link your second 8 pre to the "main" with two ADAT cables.
    Then you have only one 8pre firewire plugged and you setup all your inputs on the same Cuemix page with the ADAT ins of the main 8pre

    (Am I clear? )
     
  6. fokof

    fokof One day ,I'll be in the future

    Mar 16, 2007
    Here
    from MOTU:


    "The 8pre is really two products in one. When it is not connected to a computer via FireWire, the 8pre functions as an eight-channel analog to digital (optical) converter. Connect the 8pre to your MOTU 828, 896, Traveler or even another 8pre via the optical “lightpipe” connection to add eight high-quality microphone pre-amps to your system. Since the connection is digital, 100% pristine sound is maintained, down to the very last sample."
     
  7. MakiSupaStar

    MakiSupaStar The Lowdown Diggler

    Apr 12, 2006
    Huntington Beach, CA
    I've only done it a few times, but I used an optical cord. But I also recently started a thread about Lion and Motu not playing nice together. Like you I upgraded to a new MBP with lion preinstalled. MOTU flat out crashes. First is starts crapping out, then it flat out crashes and loses it's connection to my laptop. I've upgraded the software, I've checked my firewire connections, I've even switched firewire cords. It works fine with my other computer, but not this one. Only difference, old firewire into a new firewire, and Lion. I've got an email into MOTU about it, and so far we've gone through the re-install Ableton Live, re-install and upgrade the cue-mix software, and the drives etc. They as of yet don't have an answer for me. I'm pissed because I'm left with an unstable system unless I go back to recording with my desktop.
     
  8. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Thanks for the input. The top unit (that runs to the lower unit) defaulted as the clock unit in the aggregate device setup, and nothing else is set to clock. I'll try switching the unit that clocks and see if that changes things.

    It should work as a FW chain as well as by optical...its a supported method of chaining for these units. It worked fine for me for 5 years with my old Core 2 Duo/Leopard MBP.
     
  9. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    That sucks, Darren. I haven't had any stability issues, or crashed either 8pres. I don't run Cuemix though, because we mostly record in a 'live' setup and I don't end up monitoring...and when I have used it for overdubs, the latency with Cubase has been low enough not to bother anyone.

    I did the cord dance with this too just in case. I've always tried to stay with the FW setup, but maybe I'll break down and get an optical cord.
     
  10. fokof

    fokof One day ,I'll be in the future

    Mar 16, 2007
    Here
    If you do the optical move , don't forget to slave the 8pre to ADAT word clock from the main unit.
    You'll have to use a second optical cable to do that.
    (out from main to in of slave)


    I'm pretty sure that yours is a word clock problem.
     
  11. fokof

    fokof One day ,I'll be in the future

    Mar 16, 2007
    Here
    just thought of something , in your aggregated device , is the "resample" box checked ?


    I would try the use of of a word clock cable between both.
    (and slave the second in MOTU audio setup application)
     
  12. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    There's no specific clock cable/set for the Motu Units? It has the FW or the Optical ins/outs. But I do have two cables on their way (3 bucks a piece and free shipping, no reason not to get a few) The 8pre's have a set of regular in/out then a second set of 2X in/out.

    In Lion the 'ReSample' function has been replaced with the term 'Drift Control'. I'm going to play around with my settings there when I get a chance. I believe I had it running with the "Drift Control" activated on the unit that wasn't set up for the clock, which is how the Aggregate driver defaults when you set it up.

    I did go and get on my old MBP for the minute or so it will operate before crashing, and my 'old' aggregate driver was set up with unit 1 as clock, and unit two with the resample not selected. Some of what I've read suggests that you should only use resample when you're using units that have different sample rates and is unnecessary with units that are set to the same sample rate.
     
  13. pathdoc2

    pathdoc2

    Oct 16, 2002
    McKinney, TX
    I've used an 8pre connected to an 896hd via light pipe for years with no issues. I wouldn't know how else to connect them to my setup. A light pipe cable costs next to nothing. :)
     
  14. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Let me ask you a question...I know the 8 inputs are 'visible' through the 'main' unit with the optical connection, but are all the outs also workable? I'm sure I could dig up the answer with some dedicated manual time as well. I was surprised to find 1.5ft cables at 3 bucks a piece with free shipping...Really cheap.
     
  15. fokof

    fokof One day ,I'll be in the future

    Mar 16, 2007
    Here
    Sorry , my bad. I thought they had WC ins/outs


    Like I said in my first post , you connect both ADAT in/out , the Slave unit's Wordclock HAS to be set to "ADAT optical".
    Then you set it up so the ADAT In 1-2 goes to the ADAT out 1-2 , same thing all the 8 In/Outs. (setup in Cuemix)
    Once that setup is done , you will never have to touch it again.

    But it will be crutial to put the WC to "ADAT optical" in "MOTU audio setup" application

    And yes the 8 outs of that slaved 8pre will be available in your Cuemix or DAW in your main unit as ADAT 1-8 out.
    Unless there is something un-usuall about the 8pre. I've worked with all MOTU units except the 8pre......
     

    Attached Files:

  16. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Cool. Thanks.

    Its going to be too late to try this for Wednesday's rehearsal/recording, so that gives me one more chance to tweak the FW daisy chain before setting up with the optical lines to see how that works. As always, it seems there's some sort of hitch or unexpected difficulty in getting things running. So I'll set aside an evening next week to spend time getting it up and running.
     
  17. MakiSupaStar

    MakiSupaStar The Lowdown Diggler

    Apr 12, 2006
    Huntington Beach, CA
    Yep. This will get you there.
     
  18. MakiSupaStar

    MakiSupaStar The Lowdown Diggler

    Apr 12, 2006
    Huntington Beach, CA
    Your still using firewire to connect to the computer, just optical between the MOTU's. At least that's I remember it.
     
  19. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Ok, my slightly obsessive self went out to our practice room/studio space and spent a few more hours working things, knowing I wouldn't have optical cables until next week.

    What I did:

    -disabled the optical in/outs on both units
    -Set the Unit 2 as the clock unit (one closest to the MBP).
    -made sure the 'drift control' (aka resample) in the Aggregate Device was OFF.
    -Made sure my cache in Cubase was set to 256

    I can report that this seemed to clear up any synch/time problems I was having. I pounded on it for about an hour without any of the previous noise.

    ...as with every time I do get something right, the monitoring is now a bit wonky. One of the lines (overhead for drum) on the Unit 2 was coming through my 'monitor' out (Unit 2 mains) and nothing I could do, change the output bus, bring the slider down for the channel and the main out...did anything. In the end I opened up Cuemix and brought it down there, although I've previously not had a problem working the monitor mix in Cubase. :meh:
     
  20. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2005
    Syracuse NY
    Endorsing artist: Dingwall Guitars
    Just a quick update...

    I did order in two short (1.5') cables. They appear to be pretty nice quality (metal connectors, woven metal sleeves around the standard cable construction) for 3 bucks each and free shipping.

    I spent a few hours going through and re-wiring and reconfiguring everything again. I'm getting quicker at it as I've been doing it just about every week.

    As far as I can see, the "pros" of the fiber optic bridging are:
    -Quick setup
    -no aggregate device driver
    -simplified input mapping
    -no confusion with 'drift' between units.
    -CueMix seeing one unit rather than both, with all the inputs.

    Cons:
    -loss of outputs...you only get the outputs on the main unit and none of the 'slave outputs. Shouldn't be a big problem for me with my recording situation, but if you were counting on having multiple outs for different monitoring situations, it could be a problem. With the FW setup you could output to either set of master outs or either phone out, or all of those. And in Cuemix, you could have 4 different mixes. If you mono-mix and pan, you can still have a bunch if needed.

    Wednesday will be my first night round of recording with this setup. I have the vocals all going through the interfaces and then CueMix before hitting our practice PA for 'live' sound.
     

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