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Jerry Gerber

Anyone Using Cakewalk with the RME UFX II Interface?

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i am considering purchasing the RME UFX II audio interface.   Can anyone around here share their experience using this interface with Cakewalk?  I've been using the MOTU 1248 for 4 years but Iike TotalMix software better.  I also hear a lot of great things about the UFX II's mic preamps..

Thanks,

Jerry

 

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Jerry, I have an original UFX and a UFX+. 
Main difference between the UFX+ and UFX II, I believe is the additional MADI inputs and lightening port on the plus. RME is top shelf no doubt. Mic pres are very neutral, giving you exactly what you put into them. I have a rack full of pres that “color” the input. The included TotalMix virtual mixer is nothing short of amazing. 
one thing, the UFX+ “pops” when changing sample rate. The original UFX does not. Not sure if the UFX II uses the “madiface” driver or the “fireface” driver. Right now the UFX is my main squeeze, the “poping” annoys me.

t

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Hi Tom!

I purchased the UFX II today.  I'm busy studying the manual and images of TotalMix FX to learn it as quickly as possible.

I saw an image online of Cakewalk's audio device menu with an RME interface and I thought it strange that the USB device channels were listed something like "RME analog 1".    I have no idea what USB data, whether going in or out to Cakewalk, has to do with the analog hardware ins or outs of the UFX II.   Hmm...

TotalMix FX looks fairly easy to learn.  Can't wait till it arrives...

I never switch sample rates so I probably would not have even noticed that.

But all in all, does it play nicely with Cakewalk?  

Thanks,

Jerry

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I don't have a UFX but on my Babyface Pro there are two types of i/o ports with names like

1+2 ASIO Fireface USB Analog 1 (1) and 5+6 ASIO Fireface USB Adat (1)

reported in CbB.

The Analog i/o are the 1/4" and XLR ports on the interface.

The interface also has a connection for an ADAT device so these are listed in CbB even though I have no ADAT device connected to the Babyface.

I used Totalmix to setup one of the ADAT connections as a loopback connection to the DAW.

 

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1 hour ago, Jerry Gerber said:

does it play nicely with Cakewalk? 

Yes, very nicely in fact. 
t

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22 hours ago, DeeringAmps said:

Yes, very nicely in fact. 
t

Wonderful!  Can't wait to set it up and resume writing and recording with it..

Thanks Tom.

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22 hours ago, scook said:

I don't have a UFX but on my Babyface Pro there are two types of i/o ports with names like

1+2 ASIO Fireface USB Analog 1 (1) and 5+6 ASIO Fireface USB Adat (1)

reported in CbB.

The Analog i/o are the 1/4" and XLR ports on the interface.

The interface also has a connection for an ADAT device so these are listed in CbB even though I have no ADAT device connected to the Babyface.

I used Totalmix to setup one of the ADAT connections as a loopback connection to the DAW.

 

I'll learn more when I get it set up.   The MOTU 1248 shows up in Cakewalk  as only the USB channels that allows for playback/recording and softsynths, although I can still send audio out the analog ports of the 1248.  It seems like a naming issue, that's all.

Thanks Scook.

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3 hours ago, DeeringAmps said:

@Jerry Gerber how’s the transition to the UFX II coming along?

t

Perfect! I spent all of yesterday unwiring the 1248 and wiring the UFX ii. Everything went smoothly other than my unfamiliarity with TotalMix software. 

The sound is a little more "crisp", a bit more detailed than the 1248 and the software is definitely easier to work with. 

I'm still confused about the way RME names their drivers, I definitely could use some explanation. 

Thank you for asking Tom.. 

Jerry 

 

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Try using the friendly name Enhancements for input and output port names feature introduced in 2021.06 to rename the ports.

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3 minutes ago, scook said:

Try using the friendly name Enhancements for input and output port names feature introduced in 2021.06 to rename the ports.

Oh, yes, I know about those and have been using them since they were introduced. 

It's the actual names of the drivers that are associated with ADAT or analog; what does ADAT or analog have to do with the signal coming in and out of the computer via USB?

It seems that I'm also limited to only 15 pairs of stereo outputs, I use a lot of soft synths and would not mind a few more. 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

I have figured out all the routing with the TotalMix FX software.   What really bewildered me for a few minutes was the loopback feature, but once I understood it all is well.

There is still one minor issue I am having.   I am running a high quality digital cable between the AES XLR digital IN of the UFX II to a CD player that has an SPDIF output.  The sound is fine, but the green light on the panel of the UFX II is flashing, telling me that the sync is not locked. 

Can this be resolved by getting a digital cable that has XLR AES on both ends (or an XLR to RCA adaptor)?  The CD player also has an XLR AES digital output.

If this won't stop the flashing green light I'd rather not spend $75 for a high quality cable.   But if it stops the flashing I will get it.  It might be that the CD player (a TASCAM CD-500B) just doesn't have the capability to sync lock to word clock no matter how I connect it to the UFX II.

Thank you!

Jerry

Edited by Jerry Gerber

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15 minutes ago, Jerry Gerber said:

It might be that the CD player (a TASCAM CD-500B) just doesn't have the capability to sync lock to word clock

That would be my guess, but I don't have any experience with that.
I did use the UFX AES output to an AXE FX II unit and they "synced" up just fine.
But the AXE FX was designed to run as a "slave" via AES.
If you have any questions feel free to reach out...

4 hours ago, Jerry Gerber said:

I'm also limited to only 15 pairs of stereo outputs, I use a lot of soft synths and would not mind a few more

Where are you sending the outputs?

t

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8 minutes ago, DeeringAmps said:

That would be my guess, but I don't have any experience with that.
I did use the UFX AES output to an AXE FX II unit and they "synced" up just fine.
But the AXE FX was designed to run as a "slave" via AES.
If you have any questions feel free to reach out...

Where are you sending the outputs?

t

I figured out why RME names the drivers as they do. 

Each USB output, using the loopback function, can be routed back into Cakewalk as well as sending signal to any hardware output on the UFX II. That's why they name each USB driver ADAT, AES, or Analog--those are the hardware outputs. 

After using the MOTU 1248 for years it didn't make sense at first. But now it does, TotalMix FX is far more flexible in both routing and submixes.. 

 

 

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Hey Tom or Scook,

I think I am not understanding something about recording into Cakewalk.  Say I have a piece with 20 midi tracks and some soft synths.  I named a hardware output channel on TotalMix FX "Rec to DAW" and turned on the loopback function and the cue function so I can hear exactly what's going to get recorded back into Cakewalk as a stereo audio file.  No other submix is receiving audio other than this one hardware output.

Am I doing this right?  Is there another way to get the MIDI and synth tracks recorded in CW as a stereo audio track without using the loopback function?  The video on RME's website suggests that there is, but I haven't figured it out yet.

Thanks,

Jerry

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13 minutes ago, Jerry Gerber said:

Is there another way to get the MIDI and synth tracks recorded in CW as a stereo audio track without using the loopback function? 

Soft synth audio recording

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, scook said:

Thanks Scook, but that's not the issue.   When I am done composing a piece, I record all the MIDI tracks and all the soft synth tracks together and render them into a stereo wave file.  I don't bother to turn the instrument tracks into audio separately, they are already mixed exactly as I want them. 

With the MOTU 1248, which I was using before I got the UFX II, all I did was record all of the tracks back into Cakewalk; the USB cable sends MIDI data, audio and synth tracks in both directions.  No loopback involved.

I have figured out how to achieve the same results with the UFX II but I have to use the loopback function.   I am not sure why, but I see no other options as far as getting audio into Cakewalk.  Is this by design, or am I not understanding something?  My confusion, I think, isn't about using Cakewalk, it's about understanding the UFX II and the TotalMix software...

 

Edited by Jerry Gerber

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Posted (edited)

@Jerry Gerber

The LoopBack works fine here, however, the recorded mix does not line up exactly with the track; its about 65 samples early on my system.
Kind of strange. Sync has always been "spot on" for me, but maybe both Cake and the RME driver are "compensating".

I don't LoopBack when bouncing a mix/master. I "bounce to track" from the MASTER buss.
Like this:1929826755_IsThisItMaster.thumb.jpg.d3d78ed222c94b8d5b8fa19f0907be04.jpg

As you can see all tracks are selected, and when the "bounce prompt" comes up I select the MASTER buss as the source.
Cakewalk will create a new track, but I always create a track before I bounce and name it appropriately.

635615681_BounceMaster.thumb.jpg.296c001c668c4f859c5aeb25f8e66c44.jpg

HTH,

t

Edited by DeeringAmps

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, DeeringAmps said:

@Jerry Gerber

The LoopBack works fine here, however, the recorded mix does not line up exactly with the track; its about 65 samples early on my system.
Kind of strange. Sync has always been "spot on" for me, but maybe both Cake and the RME driver are "compensating".

I don't LoopBack when bouncing a mix/master. I "bounce to track" from the MASTER buss.
Like this:1929826755_IsThisItMaster.thumb.jpg.d3d78ed222c94b8d5b8fa19f0907be04.jpg

As you can see all tracks are selected, and when the "bounce prompt" comes up I select the MASTER buss as the source.
Cakewalk will create a new track, but I always create a track before I bounce and name it appropriately.

635615681_BounceMaster.thumb.jpg.296c001c668c4f859c5aeb25f8e66c44.jpg

HTH,

t

Thanks Tom!

I compose a piece in CW and it might contain many midi tracks and numerous softsynth tracks.   When I am ready to render everything to a wave file, I don't create stems, I create a stereo track of all the instruments in the piece.   So I think the loopback function is ideal for me.  Otherwise, I'd have to choose which instruments go to to which output , which means I'd have to record an audio track for each softsynth (or bounce them) and  the midi tracks would have to be recorded in multiple takes based on which ADAT input they're coming into.  That's an awful lot of work for my purposes. 

Instead, I created on stereo output channel on TotalMix that is receiving signal from outputs 7-8, which are then looped back into Cakewalk.  This way I record all of the MIDI and software synth tracks in one fell swoop.  Since I do extensive editing and mixing in CW, there's no need for audio stems.  The only time I want that is when I am recording a soloist or singer and need to take multiple takes which become a composite track using bouncing. 

I am not hearing any delay in the recorded audio track that is noticeable.  CW is reporting an input  latency of around 6.2 ms seconds and an output latency of 7.1 ms. 

Using 1 stereo output channel with loopback that renders a stereo wave file of all my tracks is the most efficient way for me to use the UFX II and Total Mix FX.    The Total FX manual confirms this on page 78.

Best,

Jerry

Edited by Jerry Gerber

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Jerry I did the “loop back” via adat. I was surprised that the result was “offset”. You can “bounce” the entire mix, and select “real-time audible” and get the same results. The example shown, very simple compared to your compositions, is all midi for drums, bass and piano. The only recorded track is the guitar at the top. The great thing with Cake and RME is the flexibility. Find a workflow that “works”, and you have!

Take care, and enjoy 

t

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