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AndyB01

Weird Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 Gen 1 BSOD Issue Seems to be Fixed

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Posted (edited)

I'm only posting this for posterity, in case it helps someone else having similar issues. I've had a Focusrite 2i4 Gen 1 for years and it's a pretty good interface, but since I had my current laptop I have had occasional issues with blue screens for no obvious reason - usually on startup forcing Windows into repair mode. I have tried all sorts of troubleshooting to resolve this, at one point I realised that if I used a USB3.0 port for the 2i4 by mistake, that would almost always cause a BSOD so I learned to stick to USB2.0; I also learned that connecting or disconnecting the interface 'hot' was likely to cause a crash. However I had thus far been unable to resolve the 'startup' BSOD problem, despite numerous support calls to Focusrite, trawling through dump files and uninstalling and reinstalling drivers.

Then a few weeks back I was researching the issue again and happened upon an obscure post on Reddit that prompted me to check a power setting in Windows 10 called 'fast start-up'.

So, it turns out that Windows has a ‘fast start-up’ option, as part of the power settings (accessed under Control Panel | Hardware & Sound | Power Options | System Settings | ‘Choose What The Power Buttons Do’)

You have to click the option to change the Shut-down settings that are greyed out – one of which is the ‘Turn on fast start-up (recommended)’ checkbox – this was checked by default on my machine.

Unchecking this option has completely eliminated the problem for me. Yes, it has extended the start up time by a few seconds, but the absence of blue screen errors and improved stability more than compensates for this minor inconvenience. I still don’t know quite why fast start-up causes the BSOD problem, but I suspect it’s to do with caching of system resources and drivers, and their availability (or not) during critical start-up processes involving the audio interface but that's just an educated guess.

Anyway, there it is. Make of that what you will but hopefully it is of some help to someone. I have attached a PDF of some screen grabs so you can see where the settings are and how to change them.

Andy

Focusrite Error.pdf

Edited by AndyB01
Typo

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Posted (edited)

Breaking news on this. I let Focusrite support know about this workaround and they've been in touch with a link to a new beta driver that they believe resolves the problem with fast boot enabled.

Give me a few days to test it, and if it works I'll post the link in this thread.

Andy

Edited by AndyB01

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Thanks for this info. I also have a Focusrite 2i4 Gen 1. It's not my primary audio interface, and only use it with a laptop.  Fortunately, the laptop is setup for a full shutdown (i.e. slower startup), and I haven't run into the issue. It's good to know about this issue for future reference.

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Posted (edited)

Seems all good so far after a few days of usage so here is the link:

https://sync.focusrite.com/s/y36gakQssglmbxd/download

It just downloads the .exe file (I have scanned this with Bitdefender but note you should always check internet downloads with your own endpoint detection software).

Note from Focusrite Support is to ensure you disconnect your interface BEFORE running the install.

Please note this driver was provided for a Scarlett Gen1 2i4 - if you are using it with other models/ generations of interfaces, then I am unable to provide any assurances as to whether it is (a) suitable or (b) will work.

Your risk, as they say.

Andy

Edited by AndyB01
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Posted (edited)

Hi Andy! 😀

Thanks so much for posting this.  It's good to know I'm not the only one with these issues.  Your link takes me to 4.87.4.709_Installer_843.exe.  The email I got from an Adrian Hogg from Focusrite tech support is 4.87.4.709_ScMC_1.10b6.exe.  This might be the same driver because the 4.87.4.709 is the same.  The difference might be because your interface is a 2i4 and mine is a 6i6.

I can't DL on my new PC because of my security settings on that but I could on another PC in my house and put it on a stick. Might try that, but might wait on further word from Focusrite.

Your explanation is intriguing.

Thanks so much.

EDIT-Another thing, Andy-Does you 2i4 use an external AC adapter?  My 6i6 does.  I wonder if that has anything to do with the Power Option changes.  Adrian didn't send me any info on this.  Just a link to the drivers.

🙂John B

 

Edited by Johnbee58

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Hi John, the Scarlett 2i4 is USB powered, no external power supply. The laptop goes haywire if I accidentally connect via USB.3.0 instead of USB2.0 - no idea why. I'm sure someone on here knows the answer.

Andy

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18 minutes ago, AndyB01 said:

Hi John, the Scarlett 2i4 is USB powered, no external power supply. The laptop goes haywire if I accidentally connect via USB.3.0 instead of USB2.0 - no idea why. I'm sure someone on here knows the answer.

I don't know if this is totally related (but I think it is) . . .

I am running a Win 7 laptop.  For a long while I was plugging my focusrite Scarlett 2i4 (second gen) into the 3.0 ports of the USB.  Every once in a while I would get a BSOD out of the blue that would in some cases,  take hours to recover from (really scary).   The last time it happened in this configuration, I did a crash analysis and what I found was that the driver for the USB 3.0 was crashing.  I looked for a newer version of the driver and there was none (I had a computer repair guy look at it and he could not find one).

So I disabled the 3.0 drivers and only plug into the 2.0 USB ports.   I have not had a BSOD in two years since that change . . .   Just my story.

 

Syphus

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I removed the 4.65.5 drivers and installed the drivers that Focusrite linked me to.  Hopefully that will solve my problem.  I will keep you posted on the progress. Thanks all.

🙂 John B

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@Syphus certainly sounds related, I definitely had that issue too but I was also getting a BSOD  when connected via USB 2.0. 

Touch wood, new driver will resolve it.

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Some more and the final word on this from Focusrite:

Alejandro Flores (Focusrite )

9 Aug 2021, 18:57 BST

Hello Andrew.

Thank you for the update. We are glad to hear that the beta driver is working for you.

The beta driver works for all Focusrite USB interfaces. It was made to improve performance with USB devices before it is moved to the main release. We thank you for testing it for us.

Please let us know if you have any other questions or concerns.

Best Regards,

Alejandro Flores // Focusrite Technical Support Engineer

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