LLP Database Update: August 2017:
Some additions, updates and amendments.
Added:RME Fireface UFX+ :
This is RME's flagship in the Fireface line, offering Thunderbolt 2 and USB3, FW has been retired. As has come to be expected from RME, low latency performance and efficiency is class leading across the 2 available protocols. There has been a fair amount of discussion re Thunderbolt potentially having PCIe level performance and RME deliver performance that is very close to par to the reference HDSPe PCIE solutions, at an even slightly lower overall I/O and RTL. USB3 is equally impressive , shadowing the TB2 results , and also offering a 032 buffer setting over their USB2 offerings. As I had noted in an earlier post , we are essentially splitting hairs over the 3 protocols in regards to delivered performance from the RME units. Very impressive.Presonus Quantum :
This is a unit that has generated a lot of interest at launch with the claims of its ultra low latency , lack of any DSP/hardware based monitoring , with all the dependency being on the drivers efficiency. So have they delivered, well in regards to low latency performance they certainly have come full circle. Performance at the latencies within the testing parameters were well within range of the best available at even lower I/O and RTL latencies , very impressive to say the least, especially after the curves navigated with their previous top line 192 USB3 unit.
The unit does have buffer settings available down to 08 samples , I did test at both 08 and 16 samples , and was able to play the reference session for DSP and add some plugins , but neither were really practical for VI's. Thats not to say you could not experiment with the settings for input monitoring in lower resource sessions to get those super tight RTL's , but IMO they are really only there to compensate the fact that the unit is devoid of any hardware direct monitoring facilities. YMMV.
I/O and RTL listed below for reference.
08 Samples : Reported I/O - In 0.363 / Out 0.544 : Measured RTL - 0.995
16 Samples : Reported I/O - In 0.544 / Out 0.726 : Measured RTL - 1.361
I am very happy to see that someone at Presonus has been listening, taking notes and have delivered!UAD Apollo Twin USB3 :
A few curves navigated installing the software on Windows 7, further curves getting the unit to work on a 3rd party USB3 card on the reference system, but all sorted without too much blood loss.
I tested the units RTL - Round Trip Latency with Input Delay Compensation Off, to minimize input latency , default is Medium. The Input Delay Compensation settings introduce additional latency on the Input to smooth out the DSP processing when used on the input to either monitor or commit/print, so really needs to be switched off unless using UAD on input.
Input Delay Compensation Values below.
Short : + 100 Additional Samples on Input.
Medium : +200 Additional Samples on Input.
Long : + 1000 Additional Samples on Input.
Output latency remains unchanged.
Obviously these substantially increase RTL when monitoring via software if left enabled.
Low latency Performance is pretty much as I expected, below average , ( I had already been warned by some colleagues who will remain nameless ) so for anything above basic tracking it falls over pretty quickly when adding Plugins, Virtual Instruments. I didn't go into testing the DSP side of the unit, as that wasn't my focus.
I know those requiring LLP are not the target market for the unit, and the results will pretty much be dismissed by most who will gravitate to the unit.
All good, horses for courses.Focusrite Scarlett 6i6 G2 :
The Gen 2 units stepped up and delivered significantly improved performance over their previous Gen1 offerings. Again this is a case of the manufacturers listening and delivering.
Performance is quite respectable but I did have to navigate the odd buffer setting labeling which essentially is one step out. I have chosen to post the results with what I termed the corrected values with actual panel settings listed in brackets, as it made more sense to the comparative performance against the other interfaces tested.
I have been in communication with the team at Focusrite re possibly amending the labeling to indicate the correct values, but to be honest I never followed it up past the inital discussions and Focusrite have not followed up or through in the amendments, so just take note of the panel settings and the true delivered I/O and RTLAudient iD4 :
All the Audient interface units use a unified driver package , which one would assume would deliver identical performance across the range, but one would be wrong unfortunately. The iD4 under testing experienced very different levels of performance using the same driver package when tested against the iD22 which I have here as another reference unit.
All units are using the standard OEM Thesycon driver package , however on the iD4 , Minimum safety buffer resulted in a total collapse of the driver regards playback of even the base templates of the test sessions , so no results were achieved. I raised the safety buffer up one step which also disabled the lowest available buffer of 064 , raised I/O and RTL and tested only at 128 on. Same driver package was used successfully on the iD22 at Minimum safety and I have updated the results.
Updated results:Audient iD22 :
As noted in the notes for the iD4, I ran the sessions on the new updated unified driver , results were actually a little down from the previous driver. I was not overly surprised as Thesycons latest offerings have been going in the wrong direction regards performance for a while.Presonus 192 :
This is a unit I have spent way too much time and energy on as anyone who has been following the soap opera surrounding the driver performance would be aware. You will note that the driver version I have stopped testing at is quite a few revisions back and it is the first one that introduced the reported lower latency from the DSP, but also threw out the baby with the bath water by locking the safety and playback buffers into set pairs , which raised I/O and RTL , as well as neutering delivered performance on both the DSP and VI test sessions.
Yes, the performance anomalies of locking the buffer settings to matched pairs was forwarded to the Presonus team very early on , was noted and obviously dismissed or not regarded as an issue. The locked pairings have continued right up to the current version of UC.
The performance will be consistent across all Presonus USB2 devices using UC.
That's it for now, I'll stick my head up again after I have some tested some new hardware, or if anything significantly changes with any previously tested.