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Audio interface issues I have had...

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Confused, Feb 5, 2011.

  1. Confused

    Confused Active Member

    I struggled for a couple of months with my new DAW system, and I thought that the USB Fast Track Ultra interface I was using was causing me trouble. First, I am not 100% convinced that Windows 7 is stable enough for music use yet: I was seriously considering taking the new HP system I bought back in November (Core i7/860, 1TB HDD, 8GB RAM) back to the store, because I was experiencing a lot of crashes, and very slow, overloaded performance that made me wish for the PC-XT that I used back in 1986, because it ran better. This new machine is supposed to be a powerhouse, but it wasn't acting like one. At least on the XT, I didn't spend so much time watching the old "Blue Donut" and seeing the Blue Screen filled with hexadecimal mumbo-jumbo, or having Cubase 5 taking half a minute to change screens and just showing me white boxes in place of the Transport Bar, while the red ASIO Overload light in the upper LH corner of the Transport Bar was lit all the time. Those in this forum have heard of my troubles, but there is good news:

    I just about considered deleting Windows 7 from the machine and reloading a copy of XT instead, because I know that works. However, I think I've gotten W7 straightened out a bit now. I took the M-Audio box back to the store (I had an old M-Audio MIDI breakout box a few years ago, and I had trouble with it, too, so I quit using it and it just got dusty under my desk until I junked it) and exchanged it for a PreSonus Firestudio Mobile with a FireWire interface instead of USB. Upon installation, I had some glitches, but once I went to the PreSonus site, downloaded the newest driver, and installed it, I think it's starting to come together now. I don't think I need to get a Mac, dump W7, or do anything like that. I haven't explored the PreSonus far enough yet to see if I'm still getting sticking MIDI notes, or the echoing MIDI that I was experiencing before.

    One problem still perplexes me, though: I see the green "MIDI OUT" bar on the Transport Bar flashing in time, and I hear this very slight SH SH SH SH through my speakers, sort of like a "heartbeat", and I don't know that that could be from. I'm going to keep on doing music with this system and try to overcome the issues, but I don't always know enough to deal with some of the things that come up. Hopefully, the problems will be fewer and farther between. At my age, I don't have that much hair to pull out anymore!
     
  2. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    I'm glad you're making progress. I will state publicly that Win7 is one of the most stable Windows Operating Systems I have used and even more desirable than XP. I will also state that the team that writes the drivers for M-Audio products fails more often than they succeed. Presonus is a better company in most ways in my experience. I am afraid I can't help much with MIDI issues. Most windows problems do stem however from either poor hardware compatibility and/or not optimizing Windows properly. Keep at it. You'll get it worked out.
     
  3. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    M-Audio used to be a great company. Then they got bought out by Avid. I have to agree that Windows 7 is extremely stable. Much better than XP ever was. It's just that the software developers need to catch up.
     
  4. Confused

    Confused Active Member

    Maybe I'm being too hard on Windows 7?

    Maybe I am rushing to condemn Windows 7 prematurely? There are some things I have come to like about it, but since I don't always have a lot of time to play with it, there are some things I still have to figure out. I find it a little difficult to make new folders quickly because of the "library" structure - you can't just right-click and pop up a new folder like in earlier Windows. Otherwise, it seems to work all right. It has just caused me trouble with my music apps, and it's probably just due to bad drivers. I did some of the optimization procedures already - including turning off the shiny graphics, shadowing, and "Aero" stuff that makes everything look nice but uses lots of CPU power in the background - and set the CPU for Background Services, among other things. About the only things I haven't done yet are get a list of essential services that should be left and what can be turned off. I see that I'm still getting popups about Java updates, and I couldn't care less about Java on a music PC. I'll have to figure out how to turn those reminders off. I also don't need to send a message to Microsoft whenever there's a system hangup - not to diss Microsoft, but I really don't think they're that interested in music systems, since their focus is more in business applications and pushing the whole PC world forward than in producing DAW software.

    Anyhow, I digress. I'll have to say that I think for now, I've gotten most of the problems out of the way. I'll find out today when I go into my studio if I've fixed the MIDI hangups and echoing, and if the "heartbeat" is still there (maybe it's some kind of grounding problem). I'm moving ahead with things, not being so frustrated now, and that's a good thing. It's just too bad that they changed the design of motherboards in the last couple of years to this "PCI-Express" thing with shorter cards, so my old E-Mu card and breakout box won't fit. It worked fine from the time I brought it home, but I can't use it anymore, so I had to buy a new interface. I guess that's life in the modern digital age, isn't it? Old digital musicians never die, they just need an upgrade.
     
  5. JohnTodd

    JohnTodd Well-Known Member

    Please DO send the error reports to Microsoft. It's not that it's a musical PC, it's that it's a Microsoft OS running. In theory, it should work perfectly all the time. When it doesn't, they want to know why. Your contribution is just as valuable as any other.
     
  6. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    It's more important to tweak the aervices.msc than it is to adjust visual. I run the Aero wide a** open without any issues. Also, in most instances you still get to right click to create a folder or shortcut. You just need to click in that big area to the right of the library folder list. More to follow when I'm not a Droid.
     
  7. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    Scheisse. services.msc
     

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