[LAU] OT: external sound for linux card advice

Arnold Krille arnold at arnoldarts.de
Sat Sep 4 20:11:36 UTC 2010


On Saturday 04 September 2010 19:36:06 Jeremy Jongepier wrote:
> On 09/04/2010 05:06 PM, Bernardo Barros wrote:
> > FireWire for Laptop (thinkpad). At least 4 output channels, 8 is
> > better with a very decent audio quality. :-)
> > Possible to have this hardware robust and trustful to perform live?
> Then maybe a Focusrite Saffire Pro 24 might be an option, don't know how
> many output channels that one has, I think it has 8.

Pro24 has 8 outputs, 6 analog and 2 spdif.

> I'm testing its
> bigger brother, the 40, and so far it performs well. But then we're
> talking about a quadcore CPU with hyperthreading on a desktop machine.
> Don't know how it will perform on a notebook.

It performs well here on a 4year old turion64. Does that count?

> When it comes to using it live, don't know, the 'problem' with FireWire
> devices and JACK (at least JACK1, don't know about JACK2) is that if you
> run into xruns those could take JACK down completely resulting in a mute
> machine. I have the feeling this happens less with USB, USB just keeps
> going. So for live performances maybe an USB sound card might be a
> better option.

The problem  with usb is that its totally nondeterministic. One time you have 
the bandwidth and the low latency, the next time you don't have it. And by 
next time I don't mean the next time you plug it in but the next time a packet 
is sent!
If you think, firewire is bad for audio, usb is far worse! And firewire is 
actually pretty cool for audio. Only better ways of transporting digital audio 
are ADAT, AES and the likes...

And jack2 handles xruns (no matter if its xruns of hardware or software) far 
eaiser because os its internal structure.

Have fun,

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