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Audio Interfaces with fully multi-client drivers
Old 21st July 2015
  #1
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Audio Interfaces with fully multi-client drivers

As part of a software project I need to compile a list of audio interfaces that have multi-client drivers, i.e. that can simultaneously accept audio from multiple programs (e.g. DAWs) for playback through its designated interface.
(I am not looking for workarounds using multi-client servers such as Jack or ASIO Multi-Client).

I believe most tc electronic, RME, Steinberg, MOTU and SSL interfaces have multi-client drivers. Any interface you use or know of that has multi-client drivers whether Mac or PC connected via USB, Firewire or Thunderbolt?

Thanks!
Old 22nd July 2015
  #2
Gear Head
 

I'd like to see such a list as well, but we need to be more specific, otherwise we won't get valid answers.
When talking about Windows and ASIO, people bring up two different things when you mention "multi-client":
1. ASIO playing in one program and non-ASIO playing in another (or non-ASIO in all programs) -- this is what pretty much all dedicated interfaces/drivers offer and it probably doesn't need a special mention; it's better to mention if an interface/driver doesn't do this, like, for example, Asio4all.
2. ASIO playing in more than one program -- this is not as common and it's probably what you're asking about.

Then there's WASAPI, which also offers lower latency, but usually not as low as ASIO and it also isn't supported by every DAW. It has "exclusive" and "shared" modes.
And Mac/OSX is an entirely different topic and I believe there low latency multi-client is the standard.
Old 22nd July 2015
  #3
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The Komplete Audio 6 from Native Instruments allows multi client Asio. Too bad it does no internal routing so I still use Asiolink (which also does multiclient)
Old 22nd July 2015
  #4
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Hi Sonicsilver your idea for muti-client driver interface is very nice. I have also a such kind of project I will try more and search for it further.
Old 22nd July 2015
  #5
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Are RME Drivers Multiclient? RME's FCPGA Drivers are known to have the best low latency ASIO performance.
Old 22nd July 2015
  #6
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login's Avatar
RME drivers are multiclient and also can use multiple RME interfaces at the same time.
Old 24th July 2015
  #7
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Yes, I am looking for ASIO playing in more than one program
Which Windows ASIO drivers that come with an interface are multi-client?

I believe all Mac core audio drivers are multi-client. Maybe someone knows of a core audio driver that isn't. I'd be interested to know.

Thanks for clarifying.
Old 24th July 2015
  #8
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Hi,
I think all current audio interfaces are multi-client when it comes to windows audio and ASIO sharing.

RME, Steinberg, Lynx , MOTU, all offer full ASIO/ASIO and ASIO/Windows multi-client.

As with any multi-client the sample rate needs to be the same across all the software.

Chris
Old 24th July 2015
  #9
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Kamurah's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ADKChris View Post
Hi,
I think all current audio interfaces are multi-client when it comes to windows audio and ASIO sharing.

RME, Steinberg, Lynx , MOTU, all offer full ASIO/ASIO and ASIO/Windows multi-client.

As with any multi-client the sample rate needs to be the same across all the software.

Chris
Chris,

Your response seems in contradiction to earlier responses...and my experience.

I have never been able to get regular Windows audio (like from YouTube or Soundcloud) to play back through an interface at the same time as an ASIO DAW was running.

I was just recently trying to work with someone with YouTube playing, and Reason running. Interface was a Focusrite Saffire pro 40.

We could either listen to YouTube....or work in Reason. But could not do both at the same time.


Maybe (likely) it is a setup error on my part. I normally use Macs, and there is no setup or configuration involved....everything just plays at the same time with no conflicts. I have never been fully comfortable with ASIO on a PC...there just seems to be too many variables and variation between interface and computer.

Plz advise if this is indeed possible an what kind of configuration do you need to make this happen?

Apologies if this is a little OT from the OP's question.
Old 24th July 2015
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kamurah View Post
Chris,

Your response seems in contradiction to earlier responses...and my experience.

I have never been able to get regular Windows audio (like from YouTube or Soundcloud) to play back through an interface at the same time as an ASIO DAW was running.

I was just recently trying to work with someone with YouTube playing, and Reason running. Interface was a Focusrite Saffire pro 40.

We could either listen to YouTube....or work in Reason. But could not do both at the same time.


Maybe (likely) it is a setup error on my part. I normally use Macs, and there is no setup or configuration involved....everything just plays at the same time with no conflicts. I have never been fully comfortable with ASIO on a PC...there just seems to be too many variables and variation between interface and computer.

Plz advise if this is indeed possible an what kind of configuration do you need to make this happen?

Apologies if this is a little OT from the OP's question.
Hi ,

That sounds more like a limitation of your Focusrite audio interface or some setting in your DAW preventing the multi-client operation.
Different sample rates between your DAW and windows possibly.

With some audio interfaces you can't share the same output and inputs between ASIO and WDM. So WDM would have t be assigned to I/O 1/2 which is usually all you can do. Then assign the main out of your ASIO application to outputs 3/4 and disable the In and out for 1/2 in the ASIO app. If it is able to be disabled.

Most likely though it is some limitation with the focucrite driver.

Chris
Old 10th October 2015
  #11
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#1 The TC Electronics TCNear Firewire ASIO driver on Windows is multi-client

#2 Is the Prism Orpheus ASIO driver multiclient (firewire)?
Old 10th October 2015
  #12
Gear Maniac
 

Wait for Dante VIA to release, this will give you all you need, even on different computers.
Old 3rd March 2016
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ADKChris View Post
Hi,
I think all current audio interfaces are multi-client when it comes to windows audio and ASIO sharing.

RME, Steinberg, Lynx , MOTU, all offer full ASIO/ASIO and ASIO/Windows multi-client.

As with any multi-client the sample rate needs to be the same across all the software.

Chris
I currently own Steinberg, Lynx, and MOTU AVB devices. None of the Steinberg audio devices are multi-client and only the Lynx Hilo is multi-client. I own the Lynx Aurora 16-TB and AES16e and neither are multi-client. I've also used a Solid State Logic MadiXtreme and can confirm it is multi-client.
Old 3rd March 2016
  #14
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this is an extremely useful thread
Old 3rd March 2016
  #15
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ChrisLudwig's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by desertdome View Post
I currently own Steinberg, Lynx, and MOTU AVB devices. None of the Steinberg audio devices are multi-client and only the Lynx Hilo is multi-client. I own the Lynx Aurora 16-TB and AES16e and neither are multi-client. I've also used a Solid State Logic MadiXtreme and can confirm it is multi-client.
Hi,
The Steinberg are only Multi-client ASIO/WDM.
All of the RME interfaces are ASIO/ASIO and ASIO/WDM multi-client.
Naturally the sample rate is required in either situation.

Chris
Old 3rd March 2016
  #16
Gear Maniac
There's also this: vidancehome
I think Charlie Steinberg was involved in this himself. It's old so I don't know if it works with W7/8/10 or OSX
From the manual:
Only very few ASIO drivers support true multiple application
access. This effectively means that you can not use 2 or more
applications using the same ASIO device at the same time.

The ASIO Multiclient wrapper overcomes this problem by
providing a 'proxy' ASIO driver (the ASIO client), several of
which can connect to the one ASIO Server, which in turn
'speaks' to the target ASIO device (driver). The server mixes
the output streams of all applications, and provides that mix
to the target device.
Old 3rd March 2016
  #17
Waves SoundGrid will do this, with any hardware compatible with SoundGrid

You have options directly from Waves with their DiGiGrid line, Apogee, Burl, Crest, Hear Technologies for monitoring.... etc... Also have the option of using conversion of other units into soundgrid - with the likes of a Waves DLS or DLI and Avid I/O, or an MGO or MGB and grabbing anything MADI.... etc etc... loads of options
Old 3rd March 2016
  #18
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Musician's Avatar
Are Metric Halo interfaces multi client? I don't think so in their current incarnation, but hopefully the 3D update will make it possible. And it would be GREAT if one DAW could be Windows and the other Mac and it still works at the same time!
Old 3rd March 2016
  #19
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norbury brook's Avatar
 

I can confirm what Chris said. Steinberg UR interfaces allow windows audio playback whilst working with an ASIO DAW. I often have a you tube windows playing while rendering a mix in Cubase, or look at you tube when a client wants a reference while working inside a Cubase song.



MC
Old 14th March 2016
  #20
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does anybody have first hand experience with the Prism Orpheus ASIO driver -- is it true multi-client like RME?
Old 14th March 2016
  #21
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FWIW, on each of my two "studio" PCs (Core-Duo/Windows10 and i7/Windows7) I use a Zoom UAC-2 and I'm able to open multiple DAWS, as well as other "Stand-Alone" plugins that use ASIO, all simultaneously, with no problems whatsoever (except for an increase in CPU usage caused by all these programs running simultaneously on the PCs)

Just for fun, I've just tried playing Pianoteq 5 (stand-alone), Reaper 5.2(pre20) and Cubase Elements 8, all simultaneous and everything sounded fine, except for the resulting "cacophony" of course

BTW, I know some UAC-2 users are having big problems with their unit when trying to change sample rate and buffer size, but I didn't experienced any of that (yet). Just stick with UAC-2 driver ver.1.0 and don't "assign" your PC "sounds" to the Zoom (which are not being processed in ASIO mode) and you should be fine. In other words, let the UAC-2 "serve" ONLY ASIO programs. Windows 7~10 don't use native ASIO "pathways" and the Zoom can have problems trying to "serve" both ASIO programs and "non-ASIO" ones at the same time.

Chuck
Old 14th March 2016
  #22
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ChrisLudwig's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JayNYC View Post
does anybody have first hand experience with the Prism Orpheus ASIO driver -- is it true multi-client like RME?
Hi,
Since they have abandoned any driver development it around 5 years ago and the used an older generic firewire controller chip it probably doesn't. Not any information I can find on their web site or manuals mentioning it supporting multi-client ASIO. Usually a feature people mention since it takes extra development work to implement.

Chris
Old 24th June 2016
  #23
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Scoox's Avatar
Contrary to what some people think, most ASIO audio interfaces are not fully multi-client, and many that claim to be only support a limited number of simultaneous clients (some 2, 4, etc). For example, RME stuff used to support one client per internal output, and they called it multi-client, but later they improved their drivers to support any number of clients and, because of that, their audio interfaces are extremely convenient to use.

At the date of this post:

1) All RME interfaces support true unlimited multi-client ASIO.
2) All Native Instruments interfaces (including anything that has audio I/O capabilities) support true unlimited multi-client ASIO.

Multi-client ASIO may not seem like a big deal until you try it and then suddenly you can't live without it. Sadly most manufacturers supply single-client drivers.

I own an RME Fireface 400 and an NI AK1, both multi-client. If you want quality get RME, if you are on a budget get NI. I use the RME interface in the studio and the AK1 on the road.
Old 2nd November 2017
  #24
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Has the general consensus stayed the same? I have a presonus AudioBox 22vsl and it drives me crazy that I can't listen to web pages/itunes while also in my DAW. I eventually found myself using my laptop's crappy Realtek and MME to get around it.

Reading back though the thread, it sounds like the options to work around this are:
RME Interfaces (which also have multi client ASIO)
Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 (which also have multi client ASIO)
Steinberg Audio interfaces
Lynx Interfaces
Motu Interfaces

Edit: Well after years of frustration, I found out that there is a windows setting under Playback Devices->AudioBox22VSL Audio->Properties->Advanced and that "Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device" has to be off to have web pages play at the same time as the DAW, and that the sample rate and bit depth have to match the setting in iTunes in order to play *that* at the same time as your DAW. I have no idea why this matters for the Presonus and not for the cheap Realtek in my laptop. Anyway it still makes me feel as though the Presonus is always teetering on the edge of breaking...
Old 3rd November 2017
  #25
My ZOOM UAC-2 is also multi-client
Old 11th November 2017
  #26
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Hello all, I'm new here, but wanna say BIG THANK YOU for this topic.

I have a Tascam US 322 audio interface (discontinued now apparently) and its drivers are fully multiclient, which means - can watch and listen to yt clips freely while producing with the interface's ASIO in FL Studio.

However, I have Lexicon Alpha in another little studio of mine and it definitely is NOT multiclient. I'm looking to replace it with some new Tascam interface (budget ones, like US 1x2), but can anyone confirm whether their newer gear has full multiclient drivers also?
Old 28th December 2017
  #27
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I've had this multiclient ASIO problem with Lexicon Alpha. The best solution I found after tons of research is using Asio Link Pro, and still there was a small latency that was annoying.
I have decided to buy a Steinberg UR22 MKII. I can confirm it works flawlessly, with no latency whatsoever, and without any special configuration. Their ASIO driver just works perfectly. I am playing Spotify / YouTube while playing my MIDI inside Ableton.

My setup is Windows 10 + Ableton Live 9.5.
Old 28th December 2017
  #28
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I think you'd do better trying to find ones that aren't multi client then to find ones that are.

I think it has more to do with the programs being run then anything else, plus things changed since Win 7 when installing audio drivers. Before Win7, when you installed audio drivers the Win mixer often remained independent from most pro drivers and worked in parallel to whatever pro audio devices you ran. Since Win7 you'll find the pro audio driver listed within the win mixer/sound settings even if the driver install sets up its own mixer as well. If the card/interface is unable to mate with the win driver then its unlikely to function properly.

So long as it is listed within the windows audio mixer then most if not all audio programs will be able to access the device for sound.
The program would need to be very old and outdated not to recognize it. Even there I have programs like Cool Edit which dates back to the 90's that not only runs on new operating systems but accesses any sound devices listed.

I could see a program being only written for windows drivers giving you a problem recognizing ASIO drivers. In those cases the audio device simply isn't listed under the options. I think the problem is more prevalent however when you have pro audio programs not seeing low end windows sound cards that have no ASIO or high sample rates. I've tried to force DAW programs to see windows cards using ASIO free4all but it failed miserably with the cards I tried it with. The program would open but the playback stuttered badly.

I've never had the problem working the other way around. If the interface is high end I've never had problems running any software for playback. I'd think most interface manufacturers would be required to make the device compatible, in fact I don't see them staying is business if they didn't. That's why they provide driver updates so the newer OS would recognize their devices. Wouldn't make any sense if they couldn't fully integrate because thay aren't going to know which program a customer would use that device for. Yes the bulk may be audio recording but its just as likely to be used for gaming, AVI, or somply consumer level listening. Why a manufacturer would want to handicap themselves is beyond me.

I will say some programs like Sonar allow you to lock the device to that program and not share it. Its not a default however, you'd have to turn it on to work that way. Another example is the Tascam interface I bought awhile back. You have a setting for multitrack and stereo. If you were using it in multitrack for a DAW then try to open a program that only has stereo output like a media player, it may not pass a signal. They may have been taken care of by later windows updates however because I can leave those driver settings in either state and the audio failure seems to have disappeared.

This is why I'd think it would be easier to try and find drivers and devices that are singular client - if they in fact even exist. I think you'll find most work with anything and in fact self adjust to whatever needs there are, especially with win 7 and up. If the device is listed under the windows audio settings, I think any program can access it.

That change with Win7 was likely done to compete with Mac's aggregate audio sharing. So far you still have to use one device at a time unlike Mac's which allow multiple devices to be used. I'm not an expert on macs. I'd still not sure if the clocks are being synced but you can get different devices to link at the same time.
Old 28th December 2017
  #29
Gear Nut
 

As second poster said, CoreAudio on Mac is multiclient natively..
Old 31st December 2017
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wrgkmc View Post
I think it has more to do with the programs being run then anything else, plus things changed since Win 7 when installing audio drivers. Before Win7, when you installed audio drivers the Win mixer often remained independent from most pro drivers and worked in parallel to whatever pro audio devices you ran. Since Win7 you'll find the pro audio driver listed within the win mixer/sound settings even if the driver install sets up its own mixer as well. If the card/interface is unable to mate with the win driver then its unlikely to function properly.
All my audio interfaces are multi-client (even on XP), I would be interested if somebody could test this and confirm. If all ASIO devices can now be shared among applications e.g. FL Studio and Sonar using the ASIO driver simultaneously, that would be amazing. However, I have a feeling that's not the case.
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