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PRISM ORPHEUS in use with a Macbook
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cardel
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#1
18th January 2008
Old 18th January 2008
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PRISM ORPHEUS in use with a Macbook

Does anyone out there with a new Orpheus use a Macbook and can potentially replicate this problem that i am having? I,m using a first generation 2Gg Macbook with 2 gigs RAM and upgraded Hitachi internal 200 Gg hard drive at 7200rpm. I am on OS 10.5.1 and using Logic 8.0.1 as my DAW.

In a nutshell, I can not record directly to an external hard drive (am i the only one attempting to do this?), as the sound from the playback on the audio files very soon starts to distort if there is any external hard drive connected in the chain - even if i am using my internal Macbook hard drive for recording and playback of audio files. I've tried various permutations and combinations of hook ups, but the Orpheus hardware (or perhaps just the software?) does not like seeing an external hard drive ANYWHERE in the s400 firewire chain of potential hook ups.

Interestingly, hooking the Orpheus hardware directly thru the firewire port on the back of the 23" Apple Cinema Display then into my Macbook poses no problem. I worked this way for over an hour without an issue, then as an experiment attached and external firewire hard drive, and instantly, the distortion came back - even though i was running my recording session from within my internal Macbook drive.

Again, am i the only new Orpheus user out there attempting to record to an external hard drive...? If anyone has an insight, it would be greatly appreciated. Chris Allen at Prism has been really helpful thru email and phone support, but at this point, i am waiting to talk to the guys who actually helped build the hardware and software when they get back from NAMM next week.

For the record, I was renting a MOTU 828MkII until i received the Orpheus, and it ran seamlessly (both recording and playback) to an external hard drive. In fact I had 3 external hard drives daisy chained between the MOTU and Apple Cinema Display before finally connecting to the Macbook...this all on the same platform as above (Leopard with upgraded internal hard drive installed in my Macbook).

BTW, the Orpheus records beautifully and sounds truly amazing!

cheers, Carlos
#2
18th January 2008
Old 18th January 2008
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many firewire audio interfaces do not work when other firewire equipment is attached to the computer...
#3
18th January 2008
Old 18th January 2008
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Im sorry to hear about this problm ur having. does anyone know if it happens with the macbok pro also?
#4
23rd January 2008
Old 23rd January 2008
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I have connected an orpheus to a mac pro (not book) without problems. I am however trying to also use it in the windows environment (via bootcamp) and there the Asio driver does not wok at all. Anybody who has a success with that?
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24th January 2008
Old 24th January 2008
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that is the problem with macbook as opposed to macbook pro... Much weaker firewire buss on the macbook.

And it is true that multiple firewire devices don't like being on the same buss and will croak... just like you are experiencing.

That is the advantage of the pro... You have a separate buss and separate interface with the macbook pro: the express slot. This would allow you to have a firewire interface and and eSata drive on the express slot. Or an express interface and a drive on the firewire bus. I think also macbook pro has 2 independent firewire busses.

There are reasons why people buy macbook pro other than looks, display, and processor speed.

That being said, I am sorry you are running in to trouble... I am not sure what you can do to overcome it. Hopefully someone will chime in with some answers.
#6
24th January 2008
Old 24th January 2008
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Here at Prism, we've been looking into Carlos' problem for the past few days.

Carlos was sharing his single FireWire bus with an external hard drive. The devices conflicted in some way and caused audio drop-outs. Carlos was able to use the Orpheus without problems so long as he didn't also connect his hard drive.

In the end, Carlos was able to connect his external drive via USB. As the two devices were then on separate data busses, there was no conflict, and he was able to record to the external drive once more.

Prism recommend that the Orpheus is connected directly to a FW400 port on the Mac/PC.

tutt Do not connect via a FireWire hub and do not connect other peripherals to the same FireWire bus. If you do, you may experience audio drop-outs or reduced channel count.

This information is in the Orpheus manual (under '4.3 Cascading Multiple Units') and is also on the FAQ section of the website.
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#7
28th April 2008
Old 28th April 2008
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Hello, I understand your worries I´m the unfortunate owner of three of these units (Orpheus).

I just have to say that they are absolutle unestable, I can hardly make a recording session without troubles, crashes, distortion and having to shut down the computer many times.

I´m using three units with a mac pro, first I thought that the trouble was in the cascading protocol or something, because with MacOs 10 the drivers don´t work very well and for cascading you should use the CSP mode synch and it works as shit. But I was wrong, these days I´ve been trying to use only one unit and the result was the same, troubles, cracks, crashes, and distortion, is almost impossible to work fluidly with this interface.

Prism people, fix this, because the interface you are selling is a complete disaster, at least running with mac. In the many mails I have wrote to you you only say is the Audio Units drivers issues, but this things I´m living are no issues, are really big troubles and are making my everyday work really hard, and making it go really slow.

All the days I have to restart my computer like ten times till the orpheus can comunicate nicely with my computer, then, it works maybe for a couple of hours, then maybe you start up the itunes to listen a tune or maybe the quicktime and then the orpheus goes mad, start to distort, and get out of comunication with the computer, so you have to restart another time.

I´m using it with Digital Performer 5.13, and Logic Pro 8, and I have the same trouble in both secuencers.

I don´t know what to do, I´m thinking in sell the units because they are a complete crap to work with, because my time is money, and these things are making me lose a lot of time each day. I´ll wait till the first firmware update, to see if they fix these but I have no much hope...

Sorry for writing this, I use to be a real fan of the Prism products, but with this interface you make a really big mistake guys, maybe you should work more with it before you put it in the streets.

And I´m really shure that it´s not an isolated problem because I have three units and they all work the same bad way.

Talking about the sound, they are right, but don´t worth all the troubles they make.


Sorry for my poor english level. This is the best I can describe my problem. I hope that this can help someone to not make the same mistake as I.
#8
1st May 2008
Old 1st May 2008
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Quote:
you start up the itunes to listen a tune or maybe the quicktime and then the orpheus goes mad, start to distort, and get out of comunication with the computer, so you have to restart another time.
how are you handling sample-rates when starting up multiple applications such as iTunes, QuickTime, DP, Logic, etc?

Quote:
I´ll wait till the first firmware update, to see if they fix these but I have no much hope...
They've already fixed the cracking speaker issue... and Prism support is very well respected in the industry.
#9
1st May 2008
Old 1st May 2008
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It doesn´t matter at what sample rate are you working, it goes mad when it whants, some times I´m running DP at 88,2k and star itunes an all goes nice, and sometimes I´m working in a project at 44,1k and when I go to itunes or quicktime and the orpheus gets out of comunication with the computer, I mean, the mac don´t recognice any interface) so you have to restar the computer.

I don´t know what the problem can be maybe it´s my computer, I´m completely loose, the troubles have no sense, because some days I can work for hours with no crashes, and some days it can´t handle half hour working nice, and I have to restar like 20 times.

I know that Prism are probably one of the best respected audio hardware manufacturers, I dont´want to talk shit about them, but I have to say that the Orpheus maybe is his first mistake... don´t know, I´m just saying that my three units don´t work well, at least with mac.

And about the software updates, since I have my three units, they didn´t update the sofware, I´m running under the V1.02. And never have heard about any firmware update. And, I have wrote to them a bunch of times telling my troubles and they only respond that they are sorry, but didn´t help me really. They told me that they are working with apple to solve this but that was a couple of months ago, so I´m waiting.

If someone here knows something that can help me please tell me, because I´m completely loose, maybe someone of you have had the same crashes or similar and knows how to fix this.

And if someone here are running the orpheus under Microsoft I´m really interested to know how it works under that platform.

And please don´t take my posts as attacks to Prism I´m only reporting my bad situation I just want answers and solutiond, and aware maybe some potential buyer to wait till Prism can fix this Mac troubles.

Sorry once again about my english level, I´m triying my best to explain myself.
#10
2nd May 2008
Old 2nd May 2008
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Quote:
It doesn´t matter at what sample rate are you working, it goes mad when it whants, some times I´m running DP at 88,2k and star itunes an all goes nice, and sometimes I´m working in a project at 44,1k and when I go to itunes or quicktime and the orpheus gets out of comunication with the computer, I mean, the mac don´t recognice any interface) so you have to restar the computer.
just trying to help you out here.... try doing a google search on using more than 1 core audio application and how iTunes handles sample-rates.

it might help Prism if you note exactly the process that causes your Orpheus to lose communication with the Mac. ie. note carefully the order that you are launching applications, etc.

What default sample rate is Core Audio set to? (You can find this in the audio-midi setup). If you mis-match sample rates whilst having multiple core audio applications open there is SRC (sample rate conversion) going on in either Core Audio itself (bad) or iTunes (not bad), etc.

I have learnt not to open multiple core-audio applications - that's because I used Pro Tools for years and their drivers did not allow iTunes to work simultaneously whilst PT's had access to Core Audio.

I have no idea if this is causing you these problems but it might help.

this is a useful link that explains how Core Audio handles sample rates:

Benchmark Media: Feedback Newsletter December 2007

note the recommended setup procedure:

For users of iTunes under Mac OS X with 96/24 output devices, we offer the following two different, recommended solutions:

The ‘Set It And Forget It’ solution for iTunes 7.x: Before opening iTunes, set the sample rate of CoreAudio (in AudioMIDI Setup) to 96 kHz. Do not change the sample rate of CoreAudio unless iTunes is restarted after the change is made. This solution will prevent CoreAudio from applying SRC, as the quality of CoreAudio’s SRC is horrible. Also, by having iTunes locked at 96 kHz, all audio with sample rates below 96 kHz will be up-sampled to 96 kHz. This will cause virtually no loss in sonic quality, as the quality of iTunes’ SRC is very good – virtually inaudible. Also, by avoiding down-sampling by iTunes, this setting will never result in a loss of bandwidth (except with sample rates greater then 96 kHz).

OR

The ‘Bit-Transparency For Each Sample Rate’ solution: *CAUTION: This solution is rather cumbersome, offers virtually no quality improvement over the first solution, and can easily be mis-configured which can cause severe distortion. Before opening iTunes, set the sample rate of CoreAudio (in AudioMIDI Setup) to that of the audio you will be playing. Do not change the sample rate of CoreAudio unless iTunes is restarted after the change is made. This solution will prevent CoreAudio from applying SRC, and avoid SRC by iTunes for all audio with the same sample rate at which iTunes is fixed.


Your English is fine by the way.

Good luck!

KD
#11
2nd May 2008
Old 2nd May 2008
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Quote:
And about the software updates, since I have my three units, they didn´t update the sofware, I´m running under the V1.02. And never have heard about any firmware update.
they told me on the phone last week that a forthcoming update has fixed the loud speaker cracks - they were working with Apple on getting the installer to work correctly.

shouldn't be long before its up on the Prism site for download I hope.

KD
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2nd May 2008
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SO Apart from external hard drive probs, does the macbook work well with the orpheus?

I ask because I am about to down-grade from a Macbook pro to a macbook.

can I get away with it?
and anyone who has found a way to record to external HD please chime in.
ss
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5th May 2008
Old 5th May 2008
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No Answers??
#14
5th May 2008
Old 5th May 2008
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Sorry soundseeker, I can't help you since I dont own a Macbook.

WoodDude: Did you've connected the FW to a seperated FW slot?
maybe you can connect it by adat (to a different adat board for a compyuter slot). Maybe this is more stabile.

Right now it seems that it's only an unstabil FW problem some way or another.
#15
25th May 2008
Old 25th May 2008
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Hey! thanks a lot for the replies, sorry for not answering, I did not look this forum since I wrote that.

Yes!!! Prism has released the firmware update they send it to me and I´m testing it, it seems to work a lot better, but I still have some little troubles, now I can work with my three units in local mode intead of the not-recomended CSP mode.

About the core audio sample rates and all that Kirk D maybe you are right, I have my core audio sample rate default as 88.2, but as I told you I can run DP and iTunes at the same time... sometimes, other times it goes crashing, thats why I was so lost the failures were absolutley random.

But now with the update, it seems to run nicer, but although it looks that this update uses more computer resources because I have more cpu overloads alarms that in the past.

Instead that, now I can work a little more continuously, and now I have hope, maybe in a few updates it´ll work near perfect!

Prism people are doing a really nice job.

Thanks everybody that tried to help.

Regards.
#16
27th May 2008
Old 27th May 2008
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Well, with only one unit I have no so much troubles, but trying to work with three units at the same time is a little difficult. At least for me.

Dam firewire.
#17
27th May 2008
Old 27th May 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blaugruen7 View Post
many firewire audio interfaces do not work when other firewire equipment is attached to the computer...
here here!
#18
27th May 2008
Old 27th May 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soundseeker View Post
SO Apart from external hard drive probs, does the macbook work well with the orpheus?

I ask because I am about to down-grade from a Macbook pro to a macbook.

can I get away with it?
and anyone who has found a way to record to external HD please chime in.
ss

i think it was said that with a macbook, use a usb harddrive, which should end up being usb2, which is theoretically faster than than fw400 anyway...

...the analogy would be that the macbook's firewire bus is only a 2-lane highway, and having more than device on that highway, cause traffic jams...whereas using the usb as the hard drive sources, one could say that the 18-wheelers are using the usb-highway, while the firewire highway is for passenger vehicles only...
#19
27th May 2008
Old 27th May 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neilio View Post
i think it was said that with a macbook, use a usb harddrive, which should end up being usb2, which is theoretically faster than than fw400 anyway...

...the analogy would be that the macbook's firewire bus is only a 2-lane highway, and having more than device on that highway, cause traffic jams...whereas using the usb as the hard drive sources, one could say that the 18-wheelers are using the usb-highway, while the firewire highway is for passenger vehicles only...
right, but what if you only want to use 1 orpheus and no external hard drive. how does the macbook perform then running at 96k 24 bit?
#20
27th May 2008
Old 27th May 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soundseeker View Post
right, but what if you only want to use 1 orpheus and no external hard drive. how does the macbook perform then running at 96k 24 bit?

as a am typing on a black macbook, i must say i dont know for sure, but i have a strong suspicion that the sata drive is on a different bus(freeway) than the usb or the firewire, as they are all three different technologies that require different topologies and controllers...

i could be wrong but i dont think apple would would skimp that much...or even if its possible to have all three or even two of the three on the same bus...
#21
27th May 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soundseeker View Post
right, but what if you only want to use 1 orpheus and no external hard drive. how does the macbook perform then running at 96k 24 bit?
I did exactly that at the weekend. Mac book (just the basic cheap white one), Prism Orpheus, Neve 1073 DPD. Recording 10 simultaneous tracks (drum kit) at 96khz, 24bit with 128 samples (5 m/s) feeding the drummer a headphone mix with the guide vocals, guitars, bass guitar etc - all in all a further 15 tracks on playback not including the 10 we where recording).

Besides one gripe it was flawless! No stuttering, pops, clicks just excellent recordings. Will post this week if you all want to hear?

Gripe: Headphone amps are not the loudest. I had to use them, in the end, to feed a cheap Behringer headphone amp, which is plenty loud.

Paul
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#22
27th May 2008
Old 27th May 2008
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right but that wasn't logic was it. i bet it was a much more logical program. and did you use an external harddrive?? I cant imagine many sessions like that on an internal 80gb drive.

yea please post a snippet
#23
27th May 2008
Old 27th May 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by soundseeker View Post
right but that wasn't logic was it. i bet it was a much more logical program. and did you use an external harddrive?? I cant imagine many sessions like that on an internal 80gb drive.

yea please post a snippet
It was with Nuendo 4. No external hard drive just using the stock 5400rpm inbuilt drive.

THE Prism Orpheus THREAD!!!!!

about half way down on page 2 I have posted an acoustic guitar sample. Check it out, Will get the drums over in the next few days.

Paul
#24
30th May 2008
Old 30th May 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WoodDude View Post
Prism people, fix this, because the interface you are selling is a complete disaster, at least running with mac. In the many mails I have wrote to you you only say is the Audio Units drivers issues, but this things I´m living are no issues, are really big troubles and are making my everyday work really hard, and making it go really slow.

All the days I have to restart my computer like ten times till the orpheus can comunicate nicely with my computer, then, it works maybe for a couple of hours, then maybe you start up the itunes to listen a tune or maybe the quicktime and then the orpheus goes mad, start to distort, and get out of comunication with the computer, so you have to restart another time.

I´m using it with Digital Performer 5.13, and Logic Pro 8, and I have the same trouble in both secuencers.
There have been some Mac software updates recently that appear to fix some of these issues.

Logic Pro 8.0.2 seems to be a bit more stable than 8.0.0 or 8.0.1. I followed these instructions and updated from the Software Update app.

Apple Core Audio FireWire drivers have also been updated to FWAUserLib 2.4.2, available as part of the Leaopard 10.5.3 update. I don not know what the changes are, but there are no new features so it is presumably a 'bug fix' release.

Finally, Apple have confirmed that they know about the issue where using 2 apps with a single FireWire Core Audio device causes crashes. They tell me that they are actively working on a fix, hopefully to be released sometime this year.

Last edited by Andy Saul; 2nd October 2008 at 11:30 AM.. Reason: the 2-app issue affects class-compliant, FireWire Core Audio devices
#25
9th August 2008
Old 9th August 2008
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It's time to get a PC?
#26
9th September 2008
Old 9th September 2008
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2 orpheus

Hello,

I have 2 orpheus with MacPro 4X2,8, with logic pro 8.0.2

Working with one unit is perfect. No problem.
Working with two is not esay at all!
It's very difficult to have the good sampling rates at the 2 units without crashing the macpro.
But when it's ok, I don't see the new inputs of the second orpheus inside logic.

So, somebody knows if there is something to do in logic or in core audio to make visible the new inputs?

Thanks and sorry for my english, I speak French better!
#27
2nd October 2008
Old 2nd October 2008
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Quote:
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Finally, Apple have confirmed that they know about the issue where using 2 apps with a single FireWire Core Audio device causes crashes. They tell me that they are actively working on a fix, hopefully to be released sometime this year.
This is Apple bug #5855907.

Apple haven't prioritised it because they haven't heard from many people who see it as a problem.

If you would like them to fix bug 5855907, please tell them
#28
2nd October 2008
Old 2nd October 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Saul View Post
This is Apple bug #5855907.

Apple haven't prioritised it because they haven't heard from many people who see it as a problem.

If you would like them to fix bug 5855907, please tell them
Done! I'm sick of the crashes I get when using my Orpheus and Lexicon PCM96 on the same firewire buss.

Nearly bought a dedicated pcie card this week to remedy this until someone told me a imminent fix is on the books.

Let's hope and see!

Paul
#29
2nd October 2008
Old 2nd October 2008
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Blenn: why do you use equipments on the same fw bus? you have more fw on the mac pro, connect each one separately!
#30
2nd October 2008
Old 2nd October 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danger View Post
Blenn: why do you use equipments on the same fw bus? you have more fw on the mac pro, connect each one separately!
Hello Danger. Many thanks for the advice. I do actually do as you have described. The Orpheus is on the back panel firewire and the Lex is on the front firewire connection.

When using the two simultaneously they crash and Nuendo 4 locks up. Mac looses connection with the Orpheus and the LEX is locked up also.

Try them individually - no problems at all!

So I figured that all the firewire 400 ports on the mac pro must be using the same bus still. (I think!)

Paul
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