The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 Search This Thread  Search This Forum  Search Reviews  Search Gear Database  Search Gear for sale  Search Gearslutz Go Advanced
Is the RME UFX still relevant approaching 2016? Audio Interfaces
Old 6th November 2015
  #31
Gear Maniac
 
EricBradley's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CPhoenix View Post
But Thunderbolt doesn't matter if you can't write a great USB2/Firewire driver comparable to RME and a few others either.

I don't see why people would think if Company A < RME on USB2/Firewire, that Company A would be > RME on Thunderbolt just b/c of protocol change. It's more to it then that.

Of course protocol matters as evidenced by RME PCI > RME Firewire/USB. But... it doesn't matter nearly as much as the marketing efforts suggest it would. People really need to manage their expectations.
I totally agree.
The point I'm making is the we could get even less latency (than USB) if RME chose to support Thunderbolt as an option.

The USB/FireWire drivers are extremely solid.
My UFX is the most reliable piece of hardware bar none.
It acts like having a digital mixer connected to the computer. The ARC has totally changed the way I work. No need for an analogue monitor controller.
Old 6th November 2015
  #32
Gear Nut
The key ingredient is an efficient driver, which is best done if you have a capable software team in house working on it full time.
Many companies develop the hardware but outsource software development, or even worse, use generic drivers. It works, but difference is in efficiency.

The giveaway is in the specs. Do they include detailed latency specs ? And I don't mean marketing talk, like super low latency, near zero, blah blah, but actual numbers and conditions under which those apply.

RME does publish this very clearly in their manuals. For example, for the UCX which I have, they specify numbers for both USB/Firewire and both PC/MAC, including safety buffers.
Old 6th November 2015
  #33
My UFX is one purchase I have never regretted. Never a problem, flawless performance and reliability. If RME would come out with a similar unit that had more digital I/O for external effect loops then I would be ecstatic.

BTW, their MIDI ports are the best, as well. Too bad RME doesn't make a dedicated 8x8 MIDI interface.
Old 6th November 2015
  #34
270182
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by CPhoenix View Post
It's always a good idea to wait if you can... b/c the UFX price will go down and it gives you a chance to evaluate the competition.
Do they have competition directly? What other company has the staffing and resources to maintain drivers, and make sure they have solutions for new OS's, etc? Lots of companies come out with cheaper stuff with high channel counts, but how many times do we see here, people bagging on the companies about drivers, support, etc?
Old 6th November 2015
  #35
Lives for gear
 

I went through the frustration of having to deal with poor drivers (and waste a lot of time). Above a certain level of audio quality and below a certain latency, I now look for the product with the better drivers in order to get the most important thingh: the ability to use that product and work.
Old 6th November 2015
  #36
Quote:
Originally Posted by JEK3 View Post
I went through the frustration of having to deal with poor drivers (and waste a lot of time). Above a certain level of audio quality and below a certain latency, I now look for the product with the better drivers in order to get the most important thingh: the ability to use that product and work.
So incredibly true.
Old 6th November 2015
  #37
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by EricBradley View Post
I totally agree.
The point I'm making is the we could get even less latency (than USB) if RME chose to support Thunderbolt as an option.

The USB/FireWire drivers are extremely solid.
My UFX is the most reliable piece of hardware bar none.
It acts like having a digital mixer connected to the computer. The ARC has totally changed the way I work. No need for an analogue monitor controller.
Totally agreed.

A Thunderbolt RME device would be faster than realtime lol.
Old 6th November 2015
  #38
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by ASCMe View Post
Do they have competition directly? What other company has the staffing and resources to maintain drivers, and make sure they have solutions for new OS's, etc? Lots of companies come out with cheaper stuff with high channel counts, but how many times do we see here, people bagging on the companies about drivers, support, etc?
I hear Metric Halo has close to an equal reputation w/ drivers as RME. That's just from what I've read.

Are their interfaces Windows compatible yet? I know the VSTs are, not sure if the hardware is.
Old 6th November 2015
  #39
Gear Head
Quote:
Originally Posted by CPhoenix View Post
I hear Metric Halo has close to an equal reputation w/ drivers as RME. That's just from what I've read.

Are their interfaces Windows compatible yet? I know the VSTs are, not sure if the hardware is.
No, not yet. They have teased windows drivers with USB but kept very quiet ever since. Nobody seem to have an idea about when the next generation of devices (3d) will be available, but these will most likely be windows compatible.
Old 6th November 2015
  #40
Lives for gear
 

I'm still using an even older RME Fireface 800. It's still great. Questions like "is this still relevant now?" always makes me shrug. Quality is never out of date.

What's new and in fashion now, will be old in a few years time anyway.
Old 7th November 2015
  #41
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CPhoenix View Post
It's always a good idea to wait if you can... b/c the UFX price will go down and it gives you a chance to evaluate the competition.

However... I haven't seen anything that would suggest lower latency from any of the Thunderbolt/USB3 options coming out. The reason being... and of course I could be wrong.... that's just the protocol of data transfer. It's a faster protocol... but latency isn't just dependent on speed of transfer. It has to do w/ the audio driver coding and how good it is. Thunderbolt/USB3 isn't going to change how good the audio driver coding is... and RME and a few other companies have proven that Firewire and even USB2 is really fast enough to deliver great latency results. In fact.... no company has really maximized the potential in my opinion, b/c nothing is as fast as a workstation not connected to Windows/Mac OS or a digital recording console... which is damn near immediate with everything you do.

So, I would manage my expectations there and not even consider this a possibility, to avoid disappointment. B/c in the real world, the theoretical thruput doesn't matter.

Also... regarding conversion, I have a UCX and did a simple loopback test. The resulting audio feed completely cancelled out the original waveform when I flipped the phase. I only did one pass but.... I mean, in the real world.. we're only doing one pass anyway right? lol. There was no audible degradation or manipulation of the signal, telling me what you see is what you get w/ these units. I've never done this test on another interface unfortunately, so I don't know if every interface for the last 20 years is capable of that... but... I know conversion wise, the AD/DA converters are 100% honest. That's for certain. That's how I like it... b/c I use them for outboard.. and b/c I want to create character in the mix itself. But... I can understand if you're looking for something w/ character or an enhancing sound quality to it.
@ Ever yone: Thank you everyone for your feedback.

Though I'm most certainly going to buy the UFX, I'll still wait a few weeks just to see how the Orion Studio performs (as it comes out at the end of this month).

@ CPhoenix : Can I assume what you mean about the Antelopes converters is that they add a bit of color? I only ask as most people I've heard talk about converters usually say how good converters remove low-end mud or that the high-end is accentuated.

Thank you,
Nelson
Old 7th November 2015
  #42
Lives for gear
 
muziksculp's Avatar
 

Hi,

imho. the RME UFX is still very much a classy High-Quality Audio Interface, that is relevant at the end of 2015, and approaching 2016.

Not sure if RME has something new that will be a step up from the UFX in 2016, but if they do, maybe they will show it at Winter NAMM 2016.

The UFX offers so many types of I/O formats, which includes AES. The Antelope Audio Orion Studio does not offer AES. I use two UFXs as a front end A/D-D/A interfaces connected to an RME PCIe RAYDAT. No other interface on the market offered the variety, quality, and flexibility the UFX offers.

If you are not in a rush, then waiting for Winter NAMM, is one option, but even then, if RME has a new model, it might take them another several months until it begins shipping, possibly (May), and that is all Maybe, since there is no guarantee they will announce a new interface that will be their new flagship after the UFX.

So, if you need to buy an interface in the next month or two, I would highly recommend the RME UFX

Cheers,
Muziksculp

Last edited by muziksculp; 7th November 2015 at 04:45 AM..
Old 9th November 2015
  #43
Lives for gear
I think I have had mine around 5 years. Rock solid. Can't think of any reason to upgrade. I'd love to maybe see the onboard FXs be a little better, but that certainly wouldn't be enough for me to upgrade. I haven't compared the conversion quality to newer interfaces mainly because I don't care. It sounds great! Ill upgrade when it dies and is not repairable.
Old 10th November 2015
  #44
Lives for gear
 
12tone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by thedommer View Post
It sounds great! Ill upgrade when it dies and is not repairable.
It's not infallible...I fried my UFX by hot plugging the FW port, just sayin'.
Got it repaired, but it was 400 clams...

In all honesty, the UFX is due for an upgrade. In my testing, the converters don't hold a candle to the Tascam DA-3000 (which is a mid-tier product) - it's very easy to hear the differences; the Tascam is so superior all the way around, the clarity, the transients, the 3D, the depth, the musicality, less sterility, the snap crackle & pop of it.

Mind you, I still love the UFX, but there's definitely room for improvement. I use it mainly as a converter feeding from a RayDat, which has way better latency than the UFX.

I think as of this moment, the better solutions are using RME drivers, but incorporating better DAC/ADC devices to use in conjunction...IMHO.
Old 10th November 2015
  #45
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
It's not infallible...I fried my UFX by hot plugging the FW port, just sayin'.
Got it repaired, but it was 400 clams...

In all honesty, the UFX is due for an upgrade. In my testing, the converters don't hold a candle to the Tascam DA-3000 (which is a mid-tier product) - it's very easy to hear the differences; the Tascam is so superior all the way around, the clarity, the transients, the 3D, the depth, the musicality, less sterility, the snap crackle & pop of it.

Mind you, I still love the UFX, but there's definitely room for improvement. I use it mainly as a converter feeding from a RayDat, which has way better latency than the UFX.

I think as of this moment, the better solutions are using RME drivers, but incorporating better DAC/ADC devices to use in conjunction...IMHO.
I chose to ignore the above until my UFX breaks. GAS is a dangerous thing.
Old 10th November 2015
  #46
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
In all honesty, the UFX is due for an upgrade. In my testing, the converters don't hold a candle to the Tascam DA-3000 (which is a mid-tier product) - it's very easy to hear the differences; the Tascam is so superior all the way around, the clarity, the transients, the 3D, the depth, the musicality, less sterility, the snap crackle & pop of it.

......

I think as of this moment, the better solutions are using RME drivers, but incorporating better DAC/ADC devices to use in conjunction...IMHO.
But when you run the DA out and AD back in... the results cancel each other out. There's no audible sound present at all. So... many Tascam is adding what you hear.. but it's really not there. Personally, I prefer to know exactly what is there, whether it's 3D or not. But I don't have experience on higherend "better" sounding DA converters, so maybe after hearing it I would change my mind.

Anyway... I agree w/ the latter statement for a direction. In ultimate contradictory fashion... when I can afford a new setup (not out of need, but out of pure lust), I'm going to base it w/ a Raydat and add highend conversion.
Old 11th November 2015
  #47
Lives for gear
 
Mats H's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by EricBradley View Post
November/December 2010 if I recall correctly.
Yeah. I bought one of the first UFX interfaces in Sweden. Perhaps the first one. And it's been doing great since then. Only the last couple of weeks, the front LCD has been acting up funny even though everything else works great.

Reliability is my main concern. I do everything from live 2-channel FOH mixing and recording, surround post production, film audio/music, classical recordings, high profile live conference streaming for the web and more. As of lately I do a USB backup recording, a live mixed 2 channel backup recording to hard drive and CF card using a 2 channel battery powered recorder.

I use mine with an Octamic XTC, Lavry Blue 8 channel A/D, Prism AD124, Sound Devices, KORG, and other stuff. It works. Produces great sound. My clients are happy. Extremely flexible routing. I can tune the converter clock for specialized purposes.

One of the coolest things about RME is that you can go the RME forum and request things. If it's possible through hardware/software updates it'll be implemented. I requested duplication of monitor/headphone mixes and it came through after a while, so now I can send a bunch of identical mixes to TV/radio stations. Or for backup recorders. All with their individual EQ/compression settings.
Old 25th January 2016
  #48
Well since RME didn't announce a successor during NAMM 2016.. what are peoples thoughts about buying a UFX now before mucikmesse in April??
Old 25th January 2016
  #49
Gear Nut
 
zzfdvz's Avatar
 

I must be the only person in the world who has had trouble with the UFX because of it's (mildly) antiquated tech. I did a new computer build that only had USB ports, and the UFX gets cranky with them. I seem to have linked it back to the ports being 3.0 AND AsMedia chipset (as opposed to intel). RME couldn't help when I called them, and complimented me on my system build.

Don't take this too far though as I truly have the worst luck of virtually anyone I know, and probably should've known better getting a board with no USB 2 ports at all. Oh well. I'll be calling ADK this month, getting a computer guaranteed to work, and rocking with them. I'm over being my own tech support person.
Old 25th January 2016
  #50
Lives for gear
 
12tone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by zzfdvz View Post
I must be the only person in the world who has had trouble with the UFX because of it's (mildly) antiquated tech. I did a new computer build that only had USB ports, and the UFX gets cranky with them. I seem to have linked it back to the ports being 3.0 AND AsMedia chipset (as opposed to intel). RME couldn't help when I called them, and complimented me on my system build.

Don't take this too far though as I truly have the worst luck of virtually anyone I know, and probably should've known better getting a board with no USB 2 ports at all. Oh well. I'll be calling ADK this month, getting a computer guaranteed to work, and rocking with them. I'm over being my own tech support person.
FWIW:

I use the UFX on either USB 2 or 3, without any problem whatsoever - mobo is EVGA SR-X, and I'm sure the USB 3 chipset is AsMedia.

Also use it on a rMBP, which only has USB 3.

You could always try a PCIe USB card, before giving up. They're pretty inexpensive.

Also, have you tried it on a fresh clean install?
Old 25th January 2016
  #51
Gear Nut
 
zzfdvz's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
FWIW:

I use the UFX on either USB 2 or 3, without any problem whatsoever - mobo is EVGA SR-X, and I'm sure the USB 3 chipset is AsMedia

Also, have you tried it on a fresh clean install?
Yes. On Windows 7, 8, and 10. With and without windows updates. Most reliable on 7, but still has hang ups. Like I mentioned, I've called support and they were confused too. Told me to stay on 7 and that's it. ASIO4all driver causes no spikes, and their driver does, which is something Avid had me test as I blamed Pro Tool first. Very annoying problem and I just want to work efficiently as I should be with this interface.
Old 25th January 2016
  #52
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cjadams View Post
Well since RME didn't announce a successor during NAMM 2016.. what are peoples thoughts about buying a UFX now before mucikmesse in April??
They just started keeping up with production for the BFP ww. Is that when it was announced, last April?
Old 25th January 2016
  #53
Lives for gear
 
Mats H's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjadams View Post
Well since RME didn't announce a successor during NAMM 2016.. what are peoples thoughts about buying a UFX now before mucikmesse in April??
It depends on if it fits your workflow, if you need to get work done now or if you could wait... and if it technically does what you need. I still speak highly of mine all the time and did a live gig with recording the day before yesterday (the MP3 file is a quick mix from that show), which went very well.

Now with that said the BF Pro seems quite interesting and I might replace my UFX in the home studio, where I don't need a large number of I/O.
Attached Files

07 collide.mp3 (7.04 MB, 4789 views)

Topic:
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump