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audio latency
lisbon
post Dec 2 2012, 17:42
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hi i've been lurking around and have a question about latency. of usb, pcie, or hdmi avrs, and onboard audio DACs, which is likely to have the least inherent audio latency on a pc? (putting aside pc specs and differences between individual DACs)

This post has been edited by lisbon: Dec 2 2012, 17:43
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saratoga
post Dec 2 2012, 18:24
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I'd probably get a device that has low enough latency for your needs rather then trying to guess what will have low latency from theoretical arguments about interfaces.
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lisbon
post Dec 2 2012, 18:39
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QUOTE (saratoga @ Dec 2 2012, 17:24) *
I'd probably get a device that has low enough latency for your needs rather then trying to guess what will have low latency from theoretical arguments about interfaces.


thanks for responding. that's the practical and sensible thing to do, but i'm interested in theoretical and inherent conditions rather than having a buying dilemma. i'm actually interested to know how each interface acts and what consequences that has (and since people here regularly buy all types of dacs it seems like a good place to ask).

This post has been edited by lisbon: Dec 2 2012, 18:40
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RonaldDumsfeld
post Dec 3 2012, 01:00
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DAWBench

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lisbon
post Dec 3 2012, 01:28
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QUOTE (RonaldDumsfeld @ Dec 3 2012, 00:00) *


oh very cool, thank you. they even have a forum. doesn't say why certain interfaces are better but still very nifty!
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RonaldDumsfeld
post Dec 3 2012, 02:04
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If I've understood the situation correctly.

PCi-E is theoretically the fastest for data transfer but it's not such a great advantage over the other two main variables. Which are - the speed of the actual ADC and DAC chips themselves and the quality of the software integration.

So the current champ is the RME UCX. Which is USB but has the latest software and fastest chips.
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punkrockdude
post Dec 3 2012, 10:41
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If you want low latency and stability then RME products are amazing. I have had EMU 1820M PCI, MOTU 828mkII USB, Echo Layla 3G and many more.

The worst of them when it came to latency was MOTU. It was USB 2 and for live monitoring you could always hear/feel the delay when you picked strings on the guitar. The second worst was EMU 1820M. Unstable. All I will say. Echo Layla 3G was ok if I remember correctly. Not very low latency but it worked most times.

Now I have a Multiface II with their HDSPe PCIe card and I can use the latest buffer setting of 32 samples (around 0.7ms if I am correct) and it is so remarkebly stable. I can use that settings for projects for big projects and there will be no problems. The problems start occuring if projects start having insane amount of plugins and then I just need to increase the latency to 64-128 samples. So, I really really recommend RME and I do that without getting paid for doing so.

Overall (except RME) I would avoid USB if you are very concerned with latency. Regards.
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slks
post Dec 4 2012, 10:49
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If I understand right, the main thing adding latency to PC audio isn't the hardware, but software. That's why ASIO drivers make such a big impact on latency.


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Arnold B. Kruege...
post Dec 4 2012, 16:45
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QUOTE (lisbon @ Dec 2 2012, 11:42) *
hi i've been lurking around and have a question about latency. of usb, pcie, or hdmi avrs, and onboard audio DACs, which is likely to have the least inherent audio latency on a pc? (putting aside pc specs and differences between individual DACs)


Why worry about latency? It does make a difference for live sound and overdubbing. Not much else.

Look at it this way, the recording you listen to was made days, months or years ago. What to worry about a few more milliseconds delay while playing it back?
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lisbon
post Dec 4 2012, 21:33
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QUOTE (Arnold B. Krueger @ Dec 4 2012, 15:45) *
QUOTE (lisbon @ Dec 2 2012, 11:42) *
hi i've been lurking around and have a question about latency. of usb, pcie, or hdmi avrs, and onboard audio DACs, which is likely to have the least inherent audio latency on a pc? (putting aside pc specs and differences between individual DACs)


Why worry about latency? It does make a difference for live sound and overdubbing. Not much else.

Look at it this way, the recording you listen to was made days, months or years ago. What to worry about a few more milliseconds delay while playing it back?


i replied to this sentiment. i asked because i thought someone here might know interface differences since pro audio gear tends to measure latency in sub-milliseconds. probably the wrong forum i guess tongue.gif. basically audio gear got me thinking about things like polling/interrupts/dpc/ioctl... terribly random, i know. apologies, i'll try and find a more appropriate forum heh

btw ronalddumsfeld yeah i figured pcie definitely has the bandwidth upper hand. i think my question might not even be related to the latencies pro audio guys talk about... if the latency is about data transfer speeds then that's not really what i was looking for.

thanks everyone for the replies.

This post has been edited by lisbon: Dec 4 2012, 21:35
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phofman
post Dec 5 2012, 15:39
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You will certainly receive a lot of replies on other forums. I am just afraid most will come from the shady world of opinions, feelings, and voodoo, instead of purely technical facts. Once people eventually pull out their tiny DPC latencies, the discussion will be gone from the actual capture/playback latency. Good luck.
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lisbon
post Dec 5 2012, 17:34
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QUOTE (phofman @ Dec 5 2012, 14:39) *
You will certainly receive a lot of replies on other forums. I am just afraid most will come from the shady world of opinions, feelings, and voodoo, instead of purely technical facts. Once people eventually pull out their tiny DPC latencies, the discussion will be gone from the actual capture/playback latency. Good luck.


cheers smile.gif
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