Lost audio - Driver or interface?

ecc83

Well-known member
OK bi flippant but... Remember donk's ago whenever we installed a piece of software you almost always had to re boot the PC? Indeed you were specifically told to do this.
These days that rarely happens but is that because newer software has gotten around the necessity or is it that a later OS like W10 has removed the need? If it is old software maybe it still needs a shutdown now and again?

If I was a computer or software 'technician' I would certainly think "Well, the ****ers ARE going to turn it off SOMETIME ain't they?!"

Dave.
 

spantini

COO of me, inc.
I am always a go for some good British comedy (currently hooked on As Time Goes By, with a little Keeping Up Appearances thrown in for some added spice). I've not heard of The IT Crowd, but I see some of their stuff on YouTube - I'll give IT a watch.

My PC does restart every month with each update, but not a real "off".
 

spantini

COO of me, inc.
'Sleep mode' can mess up your USB (not just USB-powered devices), it was well documented several years ago - rebooting was necessary in order to restore the full USB connectivity.
If you're referring to USB being turned off after extended sleep, I had addressed this awhile back by disabling. That may be what actually corrected the problem initially.
 

spantini

COO of me, inc.
In what may or may not be related... we experienced a brief power failure early this morning. After resetting a couple of clocks I noticed my PC was off. This was unusual as in previous outages it has always rebooted when power returned - but not this time. This does not generate a good feeling.

I boot the PC and everything goes as expected, except my interface is dark. No lights. Besides it's USB-PC connection it's also powered by it's wall wart which is plugged into a wall outlet, everything else is in a power strip and the strip's power light is on, as are those of other devices plugged into it. I remove and replace the USB cable - nothing. I switch the power strip off and on, rebooting everything - still nothing. Now I'm thinking my interface is fried [gulp!].

So I remove the wall wart and plug it in again. Now all the lights on the interface are on solid but very dim, unnoticeable viewed from even the slightest angle but can be seen when viewed straight on. I remove/replace the wart a second time and BANG!... all the lights pop on at full brightness and it goes through it's self-check settling into it's fully operational condition with the single power light brightly lit. Then some pop-ups on the PC monitor to fully engage the unit and all is well again.

All audio is back to normal.

Whew! I was dang sure I was going to have to spring for a new interface.

[Edited for clarity]
 
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rob aylestone

Well-known member
Maybe time to think about a plan B - that's very similar to what my Tascam did to me - driver issues and strange things - YET - when I relocated it to the office, it has been totally solid. I sometimes wonder if all this is down to the driver PC combination. Some windows change, maybe from something else, and things get strange and then the freeze. If it doesn't happen again you're safe I think.
 

spantini

COO of me, inc.
You may be right. I've been lightly considering switching to a newer unit, Focusrite or Motu perhaps. One more "problem" will probably push me into the purchase.
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
I know that my 16x08 goes into a sleep mode if you don't turn it off but shut down the computer. I didn't realize that at first. It took an unplug, wait (probably for the caps to discharge or something) and plug it back it to bring it back up. Now I turn it off after finished a session.
 

mjbphotos

What?!?
I've got my computer, display, interface and monitors plugged into a power conditioner (each one on its own circuit). I shut the computer down every night, switching off the 3 circuits for AI and monitors first. It's SSD so boots up fast.
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
What type of power conditioner are you using? I use an APS battery backup for the computer, interface and monitor. Besides keeping the power on, it also filters the power to stop noise and surges.

I use battery backups on my desktop computers and have a large one for the cable box, DVD recorder and receiver..
 

jamesperrett

Active member
So I remove the wall wart and plug it in again. Now all the lights on the interface are on solid but very dim, unnoticeable viewed from even the slightest angle but can be seen when viewed straight on. I remove/replace the wart a second time and BANG!... all the lights pop on at full brightness and it goes through it's self-check settling into it's fully operational condition with the single power light brightly lit. Then some pop-ups on the PC monitor to fully engage the unit and all is well again.

I've had power supplies that have done something similar - especially in the old ADAT machines. It can take a few goes before they actually start up properly. This is a sign that the power supply is failing so it is probably a good idea to find a replacement power supply as soon as possible.

(The ADAT supplies were easily fixed but they involve big capacitors charged to hundreds of volts so I wouldn't recommend people go poking around in them).
 

spantini

COO of me, inc.
With a failed power supply wouldn't the USB-PC connection continue to supply power? Or is that connection switched off when a power supply connection is detected? I dunno. I also unplugged the power supply at the interface and the USB-PC connection didn't seem to power the interface, even after a reboot. We'll see what happens next, if anything.

This just reminded me of the scene in 2001: A Space Odyssey when HAL is executing it's plan to eliminate the astronauts. They decide to reinstall a suspected failed component back into the antenna and wait for something to fail so they can replace the correct part.
 

jamesperrett

Active member
I wonder if your USB power connection failed, unnoticed, a while ago and now the external power supply is on the way out. Or maybe there is an issue with the power circuitry inside the interface causing these things to fail. Ageing capacitors are a prime suspect but there could easily be something else.
 

ecc83

Well-known member
I have only had two AIs (among maybe 6 or 7) that had power inputs other than USB.
The first was an M-A Fast track pro. This would run solely on bus power but could also run 'stand alone' if powered from a 9V supply.
The other is a Focusrite Mk1 8i6 and that needs BOTH 12V at more than an amp and USB power. The AI will not operate at all on just 12V.

My MOTU M4 will run as a preamp from a Poundland "13A" USB supply. My NI KA6 will not!

Conclusion? It depends!

Dave.
 
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