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Audio interface that has S/PDIF Toslink Ins and Outs? (PIC) Audio Interfaces
Old 30th December 2010
  #1
Gear Nut
 

Audio interface that has S/PDIF Toslink Ins and Outs? (PIC)

Hey guys, I have a korg m3 and I want to use its toslink out to the toslink in on my Macpro. Then have the digital toslink out on my macpro to my yamaha hs80m monitors.
Questions i have:
1. Is the S/PDIF of the Macpro's (2008 model) good enough for quality production?
2. USB or Firewire? Since Im using just the s/pdif, does it matter?
3. can you guys recommend something for my situation. A friend of mine recommended the Edirol FA-66

Is this good?
Old 30th December 2010
  #2
Lives for gear
 

If you want to use the digital I/O built in to your Mac Pro then use it. I don't see why you need another interface.

Maybe I'm missing something.
Old 30th December 2010
  #3
Gear Nut
 

thanks for the reply chris, i thought the thread was going to the depths of hell.

ideally (and maybe I"M missing something lol) this will be my setup

korg m3 spdif out ----> macpro spdif in
macpro spdif out ----> edirol fa-66 spdif in
edirol fa-66 1 and 2 outputs ----->yamaha monitors 1/4 inputs

This way I can monitor the korg m3 through my monitors along with the sounds from my daw/plugins.

If someone can tell me a better setup, im all ears.
Old 30th December 2010
  #4
Lives for gear
 

Perplex,

The Edirol is actually an audio interface, so it would probably make sense to be using that (or something like it) as your main interface, as well as for its digital i/o, rather than using built-in audio. As you've already figured, you're going to need some stage of D to A between the Mac and the monitors unless you want to use the Mac's converters.

Regarding the "quality" of the Mac's built-in Toslink, it's really just down to driver performance, but I'm sure there are lots of people using it like that. When you're using digital i/o, unless they've done something wrong, it should just more or less be moving numbers around. I had a secondary (PC) machine running DAW stuff for a while like that, using coaxial SPDIF output. No issues soundwise, but the "home computer" soundcard drivers often can't compete with decent drivers dedicated to multitrack/DAW work. I usually had the buffers and latency up pretty high, but it didn't matter as it was mainly for mixing. If you're planning to track vocals or anything, you may have no choice but to use something with decent latency specs or some direct monitoring functions onboard.

Hope that helps,

George
Old 30th December 2010
  #5
Lives for gear
 
Liquid Shadow's Avatar
 

Funny you mentioned the FA-66. I have the FA-66 myself as my backup interface. It's a solid little box, and will work with Core Audio on Macs, so no drivers needed. I recommend it as well.
Old 30th December 2010
  #6
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jidis View Post
Perplex,

The Edirol is actually an audio interface, so it would probably make sense to be using that (or something like it) as your main interface, as well as for its digital i/o, rather than using built-in audio. As you've already figured, you're going to need some stage of D to A between the Mac and the monitors unless you want to use the Mac's converters.

Regarding the "quality" of the Mac's built-in Toslink, it's really just down to driver performance, but I'm sure there are lots of people using it like that. When you're using digital i/o, unless they've done something wrong, it should just more or less be moving numbers around. I had a secondary (PC) machine running DAW stuff for a while like that, using coaxial SPDIF output. No issues soundwise, but the "home computer" soundcard drivers often can't compete with decent drivers dedicated to multitrack/DAW work. I usually had the buffers and latency up pretty high, but it didn't matter as it was mainly for mixing. If you're planning to track vocals or anything, you may have no choice but to use something with decent latency specs or some direct monitoring functions onboard.

Hope that helps,

George

Thanks Jidis. That was exactly what i was going to use the Edirol for -- my mac to my monitors. But im worried, am I going to be able to listen to everything if audio is flowing from the digital out AND the digitial in at the same time? I want to monitor everything playing at once, and I don't know if there will be issues when the edirol will be trasmitting spdif audio in and out at the same time. thanks again for your help .

i think if i run into this problem, i will just put the korg m3's spdif output into the spdif input of the mac. instead of using the edirol's spdif in.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquid Shadow View Post
Funny you mentioned the FA-66. I have the FA-66 myself as my backup interface. It's a solid little box, and will work with Core Audio on Macs, so no drivers needed. I recommend it as well.
Thanks, duly noted input. heh
Old 30th December 2010
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by perplex View Post
But im worried, am I going to be able to listen to everything if audio is flowing from the digital out AND the digitial in at the same time?
Liquid Shadow or someone else that uses it may need to answer that one, just look into it thoroughly beforehand. I have several 2x2 USB interfaces here (including one of their UA-25's), and one of the disappointments was in how the digital i/o can or can't be utilized. For instance, my Lexicon Omega won't convert and output digital from the analog input ports. It can only send that back to the computer via USB. I think my E-Mu 0404 has some similar weirdness, where it can't be used in a certain direction or something. Don't count on anything until you know for sure that it's possible.

Take Care
Old 30th December 2010
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Liquid Shadow's Avatar
 

I've never used digital gear with my FA-66 so I'm just guessing via the flow chart on top of the unit:

Looks like you should be able to monitor digital-in via your headphones/monitors. I don't know understand what you meant by listening to the digital out via your headphones, the signal should be sent to all outputs so they are the same. Too bad I don't have any digital gear here that I can test it with.
Old 5th January 2011
  #9
Lives for gear
I do it like this:

Interface connected to puter via firewire
(select FA66 as device in DAW for input/output)

Yamaha Motif SPDIF out to SPDIF in on interface (mine is RCA SPDIF stereo)
(motif samples are 24 bit out spdif, but only 16 bit if using analog outs)

Speakers connected 1/2 out balanced cables from interface.

You will have to select a track in your DAW for the korg and select its input as SPDIF and turn on input monitor and it should play thru your monitors

I use a MOTU that has a mixer software called Cue mix and I set that mixer for volume coming in so I can play without having a project/Daw running to play thru my monitors.

Just noticed something: FA66 has optical in out but those RCA's are color coded labeled 3/4 those are RCA not SPDIF jacks.
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