Topic: Mac OS Lion (10.7) drivers

This is a summary of the information spreading over several threads in several RME forums. Basically Lion does NOT need special or updated drivers. The previous drivers work perfectly, and there are no changes in the Mac OS that would require any kind of update to the existing RME drivers. Customers complaining about issues as soon as they change to Lion seem to fall into three categories:

1. They have problems that are not based on Lion, but would also show up under previous OS X versions.

2. They updated from an old Mac computer to a brand new one (with pre-installed Lion). On the old computer they never updated their drivers - and with this also never updated the firmware of the RME device. Now on the new computer the audio is garbled or distorted because the latest (much newer) driver requires a newer firmware than the one that is still in the interface (especially true for FF 800/400). Although this is documented everywhere, including the download description on the website for the driver file, we added a firmware check and warning to the driver to remove these kinds of false complaints.

3. Computer stays the same, Lion is installed as update onto 10.6.8 or similar. This kind of update scheme has not been working for many customers. After a clean install everything works. Example:


The update to Lion is a much bigger change to the system than other updates before, therefore this behaviour has some logic in it.

So why do we have new drivers that now list 10.7 compatibility? As explained here:


10.7.0 does not handle sample rate changes correctly for device drivers like ours, which is a 'harmless' bug and definitely no showstopper in using the device. A fix has been made by Apple which unfortunately did not make it into 10.7.1 nor 10.7.2. We have no clue when the fix will be published, therefore changed our drivers internally so this issue simply doesn't show up anymore - no need to wait for a fix anymore.

Thanks for listening.

Matthias Carstens

Re: Mac OS Lion (10.7) drivers

If one wants to continue working in 10.7 with all the programs, user accounts, and settings used in 10.6 without installing 10.7 as an update (which could cause problems, see above), the way to go is to install 10.7 on a new partition or separate disk drive, and then to migrate all programs and settings from 10.6 to 10.7 with the onboard assistant found in the OSX utilities. This way, audio works without any problems as on a fresh install, but 10.7 still gets all the previously installed software etc..

Having installed like this, I faced none of the audio problems that were reported by some customers who installed 10.7 as an update.

Daniel Fuchs