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Motu Express XT USB old vs new
Old 4th December 2012
  #1
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Thread Starter
Motu Express XT USB old vs new

Hello

I noticed there are two version of the Motu Express XT, both with USB, what's the difference?

Will I have problems with drivers or of any sort? Any feature missing, any drawback?

Thanks!
Old 4th December 2012
  #2
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mike vee's Avatar
for something as important as midi timing and compatibility i would go new
Old 4th December 2012
  #3
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike vee View Post
for something as important as midi timing and compatibility i would go new
Why midi timing? Is it improved in the new version?

Anyone has experiences with the old usb model?

Thanks
Old 4th December 2012
  #4
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Yes, I have the old model and have no issues on OS 10.7.5. I've often wondered what (if anything) they may have changed and updated but i suppose not enough to actually look into it. MOTU always had the best timing, I wouldn't be concerned there and I wouldn't be surprised if it is only an updated case to match the look of their current audio devices.

also, MIDI is now 30 years old and the standard hasn't changed and they've had everything figured out for some time now. I can't imagine a new interface performing any better than a 10 year old one considering.
Old 4th December 2012
  #5
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I have both the old look and the brand new XT USB. In total I have three of them. Except for the way they look on the outside there is absolutely no discernible difference in performance or functionality. They look exactly the same in Clockworks too when you want to configure them. Truthfully, I wish they DID look different to Clockworks cause MOTU, in their infinite wisdom, did not provide any way to name a device so that you know which one you are playing with when you have multiple midi patchbays configured on the same PC.
Old 4th December 2012
  #6
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Thread Starter
Thank you, as I supposed...

Actually the timing is better in my Saffire 24 Pro (that I use only for midi..) or I think any Firewire interface that has Midi (and the best is the Fireface 800), and that piss me off because any brand has built a multi channel midi interface using firewire..........

But now I need 8 independent channels.. so I'll sell the Saffire

May I ask you another thing? What's the sync gen in the MTP?
I mean.. is it something that helps syncing more reliably and hw sequencer with the daw? Like, sort of, innerclock?

Thanks again
Old 4th December 2012
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elan View Post
Thank you, as I supposed...

Actually the timing is better in my Saffire 24 Pro (that I use only for midi..) or I think any Firewire interface that has Midi (and the best is the Fireface 800), and that piss me off because any brand has built a multi channel midi interface using firewire..........

But now I need 8 independent channels.. so I'll sell the Saffire

May I ask you another thing? What's the sync gen in the MTP?
I mean.. is it something that helps syncing more reliably and hw sequencer with the daw? Like, sort of, innerclock?

Thanks again
midi clock is bars and beats, mtp is hours minuites sec's frames. it's a clock.

problem i have is its always a frame out connected to external gear on the XT.

anyone know a way how to solve this?
Old 4th December 2012
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elan View Post
Thank you, as I supposed...

Actually the timing is better in my Saffire 24 Pro (that I use only for midi..) or I think any Firewire interface that has Midi (and the best is the Fireface 800), and that piss me off because any brand has built a multi channel midi interface using firewire..........

But now I need 8 independent channels.. so I'll sell the Saffire

May I ask you another thing? What's the sync gen in the MTP?
I mean.. is it something that helps syncing more reliably and hw sequencer with the daw? Like, sort of, innerclock?

Thanks again
I use an Innerclock Systems Sync Gen Pro II so I really don't depend on anything else and it works fantastically well. I take midi clock out of the Sync Gen and feed it into a port on each of my 3 MOTU units so everything is rock solid. The DAW then is clock master with absolutely no clock jitter at all. It was worth every penny.
Old 15th November 2015
  #9
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once a roadie's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpsiegel View Post
I use an Innerclock Systems Sync Gen Pro II so I really don't depend on anything else and it works fantastically well. I take midi clock out of the Sync Gen and feed it into a port on each of my 3 MOTU units so everything is rock solid. The DAW then is clock master with absolutely no clock jitter at all. It was worth every penny.
I know this is an old thread but the motu xt interfaces allow smpte generation and reading...can that be used for tight sync with a daw along the lines of what the inner clock systems sync gen pro II does?

What is the advantage of inner clock systems?

Thanks
Old 15th November 2015
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by once a roadie View Post
I know this is an old thread but the motu xt interfaces allow smpte generation and reading...can that be used for tight sync with a daw along the lines of what the inner clock systems sync gen pro II does?

What is the advantage of inner clock systems?

Thanks
The advantage of the Sync Gen is that it is using the audio interface output to send pulses to a dedicated hardware device that then turns them into midi clock, sync, and analog clock signals. This is the lowest latency and most jitter free solution you can have. If you want to use the SMPTE into your MOTU unit to sync your DAW that is definitely possible and I have done it. The problem is that you go through the USB drivers on your DAW to receive the clock and there is far more inherent jitter in that. When your DAW is the clock master as with the Sync Gen you aren't getting that jitter at all.

One disadvantage of the Sync Gen is that you need your DAW open to use it. Not helpful if you want to just jam out without a computer. I have gotten a couple of Cirklon sequencers since I last posted in here and use them as a clock source when I am not using my DAW.

A second disadvantage of the Sync Gen is that it requires two dedicated audio output ports. If you have a very limited number of audio outs then dedicating two may be a problem for you.

Overall, I love my Sync Gen. It has been rock solid for years for me and just works great.

A couple of posts up someone said that midi clock was bars and beats. That is false. Midi clock is a midi message that gets sent at a defined rate of 24 messages per quarter note. As the BPM increases so does the message frequency. There is no concept of bars and beats in it at all. There is start, stop, and continue, and clock. That's it.
Old 21st November 2015
  #11
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once a roadie's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpsiegel View Post
The advantage of the Sync Gen is that it is using the audio interface output to send pulses to a dedicated hardware device that then turns them into midi clock, sync, and analog clock signals. This is the lowest latency and most jitter free solution you can have. If you want to use the SMPTE into your MOTU unit to sync your DAW that is definitely possible and I have done it. The problem is that you go through the USB drivers on your DAW to receive the clock and there is far more inherent jitter in that. When your DAW is the clock master as with the Sync Gen you aren't getting that jitter at all.

One disadvantage of the Sync Gen is that you need your DAW open to use it. Not helpful if you want to just jam out without a computer. I have gotten a couple of Cirklon sequencers since I last posted in here and use them as a clock source when I am not using my DAW.

A second disadvantage of the Sync Gen is that it requires two dedicated audio output ports. If you have a very limited number of audio outs then dedicating two may be a problem for you.

Overall, I love my Sync Gen. It has been rock solid for years for me and just works great.

A couple of posts up someone said that midi clock was bars and beats. That is false. Midi clock is a midi message that gets sent at a defined rate of 24 messages per quarter note. As the BPM increases so does the message frequency. There is no concept of bars and beats in it at all. There is start, stop, and continue, and clock. That's it.
Thanks! This is great info.
Old 19th December 2015
  #12
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpsiegel View Post
The advantage of the Sync Gen is that it is using the audio interface output to send pulses to a dedicated hardware device that then turns them into midi clock, sync, and analog clock signals. This is the lowest latency and most jitter free solution you can have. If you want to use the SMPTE into your MOTU unit to sync your DAW that is definitely possible and I have done it. The problem is that you go through the USB drivers on your DAW to receive the clock and there is far more inherent jitter in that. When your DAW is the clock master as with the Sync Gen you aren't getting that jitter at all.

One disadvantage of the Sync Gen is that you need your DAW open to use it. Not helpful if you want to just jam out without a computer. I have gotten a couple of Cirklon sequencers since I last posted in here and use them as a clock source when I am not using my DAW.

A second disadvantage of the Sync Gen is that it requires two dedicated audio output ports. If you have a very limited number of audio outs then dedicating two may be a problem for you.

Overall, I love my Sync Gen. It has been rock solid for years for me and just works great.

A couple of posts up someone said that midi clock was bars and beats. That is false. Midi clock is a midi message that gets sent at a defined rate of 24 messages per quarter note. As the BPM increases so does the message frequency. There is no concept of bars and beats in it at all. There is start, stop, and continue, and clock. That's it.
Sorry to re-resurrect this but I also had some questions about this and instead of starting a new thread I figured since we're already talking...

I would like a clarification on the above comment, because I was also contemplating using SMPTE to sync external gear to my DAW using my MOTU express and hoping I could avoid getting the Sync Gen and Expert Sleepers stuff if at all possible...

The above comment says that if I use the SMPTE to sync the MOTU to my DAW then I would be going through the "USB Drivers". Now I have never used SMPTE before and I may be missing something here but I thought that SMPTE takes an audio signal (such as the click of a metronome) and turns it into MIDI clock information which the MOTU can then pass on to other connected devices via MIDI...

With that in mind, is it possible to route the metronome from a DAW (or any other percussive sound lined up on the grid of the DAW for that matter) "feed" it into the SMPTE inputs on the MOTU and sync it to that? If this is possible, are there any ADAT to SMPTE cables or adapters or something that would allow the MOTU to receive audio from the ADAT outputs of my soundcard?

The other reason I asked was because I know that you don't actually need to use the SMPTE inputs on the MOTU to get it to sync to the DAW using the USB drivers. All you need is the USB cable and I have already tried that and experienced the aforementioned jitters...

Also on a side note, can the Syn Gen get its audio from ADAT outputs on the soundcard or does it have to be from the analogue outputs? I am guessing it doesn't matter right?
Old 19th December 2015
  #13
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kpsiegel's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by staticdeathnoise View Post
Sorry to re-resurrect this but I also had some questions about this and instead of starting a new thread I figured since we're already talking...

I would like a clarification on the above comment, because I was also contemplating using SMPTE to sync external gear to my DAW using my MOTU express and hoping I could avoid getting the Sync Gen and Expert Sleepers stuff if at all possible...

The above comment says that if I use the SMPTE to sync the MOTU to my DAW then I would be going through the "USB Drivers". Now I have never used SMPTE before and I may be missing something here but I thought that SMPTE takes an audio signal (such as the click of a metronome) and turns it into MIDI clock information which the MOTU can then pass on to other connected devices via MIDI...

With that in mind, is it possible to route the metronome from a DAW (or any other percussive sound lined up on the grid of the DAW for that matter) "feed" it into the SMPTE inputs on the MOTU and sync it to that? If this is possible, are there any ADAT to SMPTE cables or adapters or something that would allow the MOTU to receive audio from the ADAT outputs of my soundcard?

The other reason I asked was because I know that you don't actually need to use the SMPTE inputs on the MOTU to get it to sync to the DAW using the USB drivers. All you need is the USB cable and I have already tried that and experienced the aforementioned jitters...

Also on a side note, can the Syn Gen get its audio from ADAT outputs on the soundcard or does it have to be from the analogue outputs? I am guessing it doesn't matter right?

If you want to sync with your DAW then the clock has to go up through the USB port using the drivers. That was the point. The Sync Gen totally avoids that issue because the DAW controls the clocking and it uses audio outs to the Sync Gen which then sends out midi clock to other devices. No USB drivers are ever involved.
Old 19th December 2015
  #14
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once a roadie's Avatar
 

Just ordered up a motu micro xt...usb...will see how it goes!
Old 20th December 2015
  #15
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpsiegel View Post
If you want to sync with your DAW then the clock has to go up through the USB port using the drivers. That was the point. The Sync Gen totally avoids that issue because the DAW controls the clocking and it uses audio outs to the Sync Gen which then sends out midi clock to other devices. No USB drivers are ever involved.
Thanks for the reply... I just thought that considering the MOTU had a actual SMPTE plugs on the back that it could take clock from an audio source and not only the USB... If this is not the case then what is the function of the SMPTE plugs on the back of the unit? It already syncs with the DAW through USB WITHOUT anything plugged into that, this is what is confusing me...
Old 20th December 2015
  #16
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Duke Murdock's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kpsiegel View Post
If you want to sync with your DAW then the clock has to go up through the USB port using the drivers. That was the point. The Sync Gen totally avoids that issue because the DAW controls the clocking and it uses audio outs to the Sync Gen which then sends out midi clock to other devices. No USB drivers are ever involved.
I'm curious to hear how you feel the Sync Gen stacks up to Roland's new Aira Sync Box? I've had the Sync Gen on my list for a while, but I'm now debating between the two. The main advantage of Rolands unit seems to be that you can clock/sync from multiple sources whereas I believe the Innerclock only transmits clock from the DAW. The CV/gate capability is also a nice plus, but I'm mainly using MIDI.
Old 20th December 2015
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duke Murdock View Post
I'm curious to hear how you feel the Sync Gen stacks up to Roland's new Aira Sync Box? I've had the Sync Gen on my list for a while, but I'm now debating between the two. The main advantage of Rolands unit seems to be that you can clock/sync from multiple sources whereas I believe the Innerclock only transmits clock from the DAW. The CV/gate capability is also a nice plus, but I'm mainly using MIDI.
I have no idea how it stacks up since I am happy with my setup and have had no reason to explore other options. When I want to clock outside the DAW I use my Cirklon.
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