RME forced to use other chips for the foreseeable future
Global chip crisis with extreme never before encountered production and distribution challenges.
Apart from that, at the end of 2020 a fire destroyed AKM's production facilities for AD and DA converter chips. A resumption of production and thus availability of these components is not expected before 2022. Therefore, many manufacturers - like RME - are forced to either discontinue products based on AKM chips, or to use other chips for the foreseeable future.
The updated ADI-2 DAC uses ESS's ES9028Q2M in a special circuit variant developed by RME engineers that allows the chip to perform at its best. There are no significant changes in operation, features and behaviour compared to the predecessor, which is why neither appearance nor name have changed. All differences are explained in the detailed manual of the ADI-2 DAC.
ADI-2 DAC FS now ships with ESS Chips
Wow that's pretty crazy. The ripple effect of the chip shortage is reaching far and wide. Computer graphics cards have tripled in price (chip shortage and data mining along with high demand). I wonder if we're going to see price hikes for interfaces. I hope not as I'll be looking for one fairly soon.
No kidding! From what I understand... shortages and big price increases on all sorts of things are coming. Interesting times ahead.
I recently looked up my tascam 34 tape machine that I paid 100$ for with the mixer and spring reverb unit, and the tape machines alone are going for 500-700 on reverb.
Good time to be on the sellers side of things.
I wonder if this will slow down innovation/new product releases. The computer part companies have been doing "paper launches" and releasing no products without much inventory. They've even started re-manufacturing old graphics cards for re-release.
From what I gather the companies net worth is a key factor, as apple and Intel seem to have much less shortages. Tough position for audio companies as their generally pretty niche, barring avid or Harman.
They (TSMC) are supposed to be making a new manufacturing plant in Arizona set to be up and running in 2023ish.
Im strongly considering getting a mid/high quality interface sooner than I planned because of all this. Or just riding out the storm with what I have.