Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Ok, found "revision-id" = <08000000> via console re the Macbook Pro - so revision 8 = no problems?
In addition to this Macbook Pro model we have several of the 13" Macbook Pro's from Mid 2010 & they have toured for over a year problem free with MOTU Ultralites (running Logic or Mainstage)- the 2011 MBP is also working fine with the MOTU in tests.
The choice of RME is simply for a notch up in audio quality, the MOTU's are certainly extremely stable but can sound a little brittle to my ears when feeding a (real-time modelling) program such as Guitar Rig with instruments like a Musicman Stingray or Les Paul with Seymour Duncans (so active or high-output) & building very punchy bottom end heavy sounds....just not quite coherent enough - initially realised the potential room for improvement (for this build) when doing some A/B tests using the Babyface I bought a few months back.
Thanks, Geoff.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Revision 7 and 8 should work, at least they do for me. wink

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Ok, cheers for that - what's the spec of your 2011 Macbook Pro if you don't mind me asking?

354 (edited by Timur 2011-07-28 15:13:44)

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Stock: 2011 MBP 17" 2.3 i7 Quad, 750 gb HD, 4 gb 1333 mHz RAM, dedicated ATI graphic with 1 gb RAM

Changed to: 256 gb SSD as main drive (bootcamped Windows + OS X) + 750 gb HD in Optibay (1. partition: sample libraries, data, 2. partition: backups, downloads, whatever, 3. partition: bootable 1:1 clone of OS X), 8 gb 1600 mHz RAM, external eSATA 2 gb HD for (backups, copies of sample-libraries, etc.), external DVD writer.

I had to get a Bluetooth USB stick and trick the MBP to make use of it instead of the internal one. The internal one fails at less than half a meter, which did not happen with former MBP. So either mine is broken or the new design is flawed.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Hi Timur,

I have the same macbook pro you have. I am experiencing some issues with ff400 and my g-tech hard drive. If connect my g-drive to the macbook pro via firewire 800 bus powered and then connect the fireface 400 via firewire 400 not bus powered to the g-drive - so the g drive is acting like a bridge - my fans kick in very easily and cpu is under stress for a while

I used the same configuration on my old macbook pro not unibody and I did not have any issues.

Did you experience some issues like mine?

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

I would have to check the 2011 MBP specifically. I do know that using a Firewire HD makes a difference for the MBP's internal electrics, I did not check temperatures though.

You may want to take a look at this thread: http://www.gearslutz.com/board/music-co … proof.html

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

do you have ff400 or fireface uc?

358 (edited by Timur 2011-07-31 14:22:43)

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Both. The thread on Gearslutz is quite informative and explains the possible source of your additional heat. It's something that affects FW devices in general, at least for those people who report it.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

I will buy a fireface uc as well and do some test.

I will keep you posted.

Thanks

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Hi Timur,

I did some test with the fireface 400 on my new macbook pro. Using the fireface 400 directly connected to the macbook pro firewire port I have the cpu running at almost 90 degrees and cpu kickin for ever. I have tested also connecting the harddrive to the fw800 port and everything works under normal temperature. I have tested logic, reason and record.

Do you have an idea of why the cpu is so under stress with the fireface 400? I have the latest drive and firmware.

Is someone in the forum here having the same issue?

It is really weird because my fireface 400 has worked on all the previous mac. I suspect that this could be due to the agere chipset or some 64 bit issues.

361

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Timur wrote:

You may want to take a look at this thread: http://www.gearslutz.com/board/music-co … proof.html

I looked at this and rather than working with Coolbook, I thought I'd try out smcFanControl first, to see if raising my Macs' fan speeds would let me run cooler without having to deal with too much added noise.

Happily, I've found that on both my machines, a late 2006 iMac (version 6.1) and a late 2007 MacBook Pro (v. 3.1) raising the speeds to a point half way between the Apple Default minimum and the maximum available, results in the ability to run about 10 degrees C cooler, without very much additional noise at all. smcFanControl allows me to save this elevated fan speed setting, so that any time I boot up into the Mac OS, my fans are running faster. A nice bonus is that if I boot up into the Mac OS first, and then re-boot into Windows (XP Pro SP3 32 bit via Bootcamp 2.1), the fans keep running at the higher speeds. Booting directly into Windows from a cold start, does not give me the faster fans.

Is there a Windows utility similar to smcFanControl that would allow me to simply raise my minimum fan speeds? I'm already running RivaTuner to force my NVDIA graphics to stay in low-power 3D mode. Is there a setting in there that would also give me the control over fan speeds I'm looking for? If not, is there a stand-alone utility that will do the job?

Frank Lockwood
http://LockwoodARS.com
Fireface 800 - Firmware 2.77
Drivers: Win7, 3.123; Mac, 3.33

362 (edited by Timur 2011-08-04 14:02:37)

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

We should put this into a new thread, since it's getting off-topic. Maybe Daniel can split this discussion into a new one?!

I did some test with the fireface 400 on my new macbook pro. Using the fireface 400 directly connected to the macbook pro firewire port I have the cpu running at almost 90 degrees and cpu kickin for ever. I have tested also connecting the harddrive to the fw800 port and everything works under normal temperature. I have tested logic, reason and record.

This should not happen when you are not using any audio application though, only when actively using the FF400 for playback/recording. And even then the 90°C should only happen when you put additional load on the CPU, please try simple Stereo playback of an single audio clip (60°C here with fan-speed increasing slightly).

I looked into this on my Sandybridge i7 Quad (2011 MBP) and found some interesting and surprising results. Once I find time to look at a Nehalem i7 and Core2Duo iMac I will write a full report (in a new thread). Just so much, on the SNB i7 actively using (likely) *any* FW or USB audio interface leads to OS X turning off most CPU power-saving states (C-states). This leads to *all* cores staying active at +1 Turbo bin (3.1 gHz on my 2.3 gHz i7). While for temps this might be a problem it can be quite beneficial for audio applications (I spent quite some effort and time doing exactly that on my C2D MBP).

I tested RME FF400 (FW), BF (USB), NI Kore 1 (USB) and most important Zoom H2 (USB compliant, which needs *no* drivers, but uses OS X' ones).

Is there a Windows utility similar to smcFanControl

Speedfan by Almico offers full fan-control for those mainboard compatible: http://www.almico.com/speedfan.php

It cannot control fans of Macs though. In order to achieve that you have to use SMCfancontrol to set your desired minimum speed and then reboot into bootcamped Windows. The fan-speed setting will stay in SMC memory for as long as you do not turn off the Mac.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Yes I agree with you. We should create another thread.

I confirm that the fans are kicking in only when playback and recording are happening. Even if ,I am having this issue also with a simple midi playing which should not be cpu hungry.  However I am not too sure if I understood what you are saying. This issue is very worrying than. If
Are also the usb audio card affected?

364

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Timur wrote:

Is there a Windows utility similar to smcFanControl

Speedfan by Almico offers full fan-control for those mainboard compatible: http://www.almico.com/speedfan.php

It cannot control fans of Macs though. In order to achieve that you have to use SMCfancontrol to set your desired minimum speed and then reboot into bootcamped Windows. The fan-speed setting will stay in SMC memory for as long as you do not turn off the Mac.

I think I may have partially answered my own question, in that it looks like the developers of smcFanControl were working on a Windows version which is still available at http://sourceforge.net/projects/macfan/

I should point out that MacFan 0.65 is no longer being developed.

MacFan requires you to run it from Start > Run... , browsing to the location of the program and then adding the fan speeds in rpm that you desire, as arguments. For example, for my MacBook Pro I enter this statement (including the quotation marks, and yes, I have it located on my desktop for now):

"C:\Documents and Settings\UserName\Desktop\MacFan0_65\MacFan.exe" 4000 4000

which bumps the fan speeds up to 4000 rpm from Apple's default 2000 rpm, just like smcFanControl does over on the Mac side. You don't want to do this following a re-boot from the Mac side, if you've been running smcFanControl, as MacFan is aware of this, and will tell you that improper fan speeds seem to have been saved. Running this following a cold boot results in no problems.

It would be nice if the program's window would stay open after running, to allow examination of all the text, but it disappears as soon as the speed change is complete. It would also be nice if there was a way to store my preferred speeds, so that the computer would start up with these new speeds automatically, without having to run the program. However, it's still an improvement over booting into the Mac OS first to get the fans up to speed, and then rebooting into Windows.

A typical session in Pyramix will get my MBP's GPU up into the high 70s/low 80s (Celsius), but with a 4000 rpm fan on it, it rarely exceeds 65 degrees.

To bring this rocketing back on topic, this is all while running a Fireface 800 as my ASIO interface which, truth be told, also gets a little warm during use.

Frank Lockwood
http://LockwoodARS.com
Fireface 800 - Firmware 2.77
Drivers: Win7, 3.123; Mac, 3.33

365 (edited by Timur 2011-08-04 22:29:08)

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

You should put something under the back of your Macbook Pro to elevate it for better heat ventilation and make sure the display is opened close to 90° (better a bit more open than a bit more close than 90°, but not too far). I tested several applications (Itunes, Logic, Finder, Live 7+8) and CPU temps remained around 60°C (give or take) with fan-speed increasing when FW or USB audio was used (by less than 500 rpm though).

Since it's likely OS X own power-management turning off the deeper sleep states of the CPU the interfaces and drivers have little to no influence on this. You won't see the same happen on bootcamped Windows btw, which can be both an advantage and a disadvantage.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Hi Timur, my macbook pro is raised on 2 coolball and screen always open at 90. It is very strange cause as soon as I hit play i have this issues. However only in Reason, Record and live - itunes is not affected. But the most worrying thing is that I m testing all these daw with a single midi channel, not even audio.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Could you send me some simple files for Reason and Live (no Record license yet), so I can test that here?

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

yes, sure. I replied you privately.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Mailed you and waiting for the files now. But one more thing:

When you connect the G-Drive, did you exclude it's partitions from being indexed by Spotlight? If not then Spotlight/MDS will run tax your CPU every time you connect/turn on the drive. wink

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

fl wrote:

"C:\Documents and Settings\UserName\Desktop\MacFan0_65\MacFan.exe" 4000 4000
...
It would be nice if the program's window would stay open after running, to allow examination of all the text, but it disappears as soon as the speed change is complete.

Just open a Command Prompt and run it from there.

It would also be nice if there was a way to store my preferred speeds, so that the computer would start up with these new speeds automatically, without having to run the program.

Just create a batchfile (txt file with ending .bat or .cmd) and have that run on startup. If MacFan needs administrative rights and you are using UAC you need to either change its properties and manually acknowledge the administrative popup or run it via Task Scheduler.

371

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Timur wrote:

Just open a Command Prompt and run it from there.

Yes, thanks Timur - it's amazing what happens when you READ THE DIRECTIONS!

Frank Lockwood
http://LockwoodARS.com
Fireface 800 - Firmware 2.77
Drivers: Win7, 3.123; Mac, 3.33

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Hi Timur..i think i know the cause of the overheating. I use an external monitor plugged into my thunderbolt port. When I unplug the monitor the temperature goes down and it works at 60 degrees with no fans kicking.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Hm, I'm also using an external display via a Dual-Link DVI adapter (2560x1600) and still don't get that high temps. What happens when you use an external display is that the dedicated GPU is used permanently instead of switching dynamically between ATI and Intel GPU. But my 60°C were measured with the external display being active.

Are you using a display with Displayport input or a DVI one?

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Display with DVI dual link resolution 2040 x 1152

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Hi Timur, it seems there is another guy with a similar issue.on the forum. I have tested the Fireface with itunes and i did not experience any cpu load and overheating. It seems that the fans are kicking even with a minimal cpu load, for example a very light project in Reason or Record. There must be something weird.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Let's skip over to the other thread then. wink

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Ok, cool.

378

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Timur wrote:

Let's skip over to the other thread then. wink

which can be found here:

http://www.rme-audio.de/forum/viewtopic.php?id=11957

Frank Lockwood
http://LockwoodARS.com
Fireface 800 - Firmware 2.77
Drivers: Win7, 3.123; Mac, 3.33

379

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Revision 8 is giving me the same problems that all people says in the forum with the revision 6 on a mbp.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Hi folks
I wanted to chime in on the end of my 2 year agony with the Fireface 400 and a 2009 Macbook Pro. I bought the Lindy repeater which gives the appearance of working. However, I put up with very poor audio performance from Digital Performer and completely terrible performance with Ableton Live, taking it for granted. Then, recently, on a lark, I used an expresscard firewire adapter I had. Audio performance suddenly became excellent.

So in my experience the Lindy repeater cable is not a solution really. It gives the appearance of working, but nothing that one would expect from a 2500$ laptop and 1000$ soundcard. With the LIndy repeater cable, my putzy Lenovo x200+USB Edirol was a much more stable platform for recording.

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

All I can say is that I am using the Lindy repeater since 2008, on a 2008 MBP, a 2009 MBP, a 2010 MBP (not needed for compatibility anymore, but used for increasing cable length) and 2011 MBP (again used for increased length). They all worked the same and usually equal or a bit better than Firewire ExpressCard adapters.

Especially Ableton Live does not work as well on Lion as it did on Snow Leopard/Leopard, and even the latter was very depending on CPU power-saving behavior (could be controlled somewhat via the Coolbook application). On bootcamped Windows it all works well, too (using the proper power-scheme that is).

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

Hey guys, Im having a problem with my Fireface 800.

First off, Im aware that my iMac falls under the "revision 6" FW chip problem. However, up until the past month, my FF was working perfectly, plugged into either 800 or 400. All of a sudden, out of nowhere it stops working, by that I mean that it will no longer sync at all via 800. When plugged into 400, it will sync only as long as it is not chosen as the device (either for the computer as a whole or in a DAW), at which point it will jump in and out of sync every few seconds (audio does the same).

I know of the workaround and have tried it. I have a Western Digital FW external hard drive, and have tried daisy chaining everything in every single combination, it makes no difference. I know my FW cables are all working as I have tested them with the external hard drive. At first I thought there was a problem with my FW ports, but the hard drive seems to be working fine.

Again, I've tried every combination of daisy chaining, without a positive result.
I've also uninstalled and reinstalled all the drivers and firmware several times, as well as tried older versions.

I dont understand how it went from working perfectly fine one night, to not working the next morning (which is literally what happened).

Any ideas?

Re: Hardware Alert: FireWire solutions with Agere FW chip

i have the Lucent ID 5901 FW chipset with "revision-id" = <03000000>

Am i doomed ? what are my options to get the ff800 to work properly