Focusrite Liquid Mix launch failure

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rockstudio
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Focusrite Liquid Mix launch failure

Post by rockstudio » Fri Aug 27, 2010 6:28 pm

Does anyone out there use the Focusrite Liquid Mix? I have had one for a while, and it is unreliable, so I rarely use it. My unit will fail to launch on the first attempt and says "Liquid Mix failed to access hardware", so I have to try several times before the unit displays that it is ready to work. Then sometimes it will die in the middle of a session and I'll have to reboot my computer. I am not sure if this is because I am using a firewire extender, or if my unit is bad. I can't find any information about this problem happening to anyone else. Any thoughts?

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Post by woodhenge » Fri Aug 27, 2010 7:29 pm

The Liquid Mix is very finicky when it comes to your firewire connection... If you're using a hub or extender, that could very well be the cause of the problem.

The best bet is to have the LM on its own firewire buss. If you have a desktop machine and have an open card slot, a dedicated firewire PCI card for the LM is a great help in keeping things running smoothly.
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Post by rockstudio » Fri Aug 27, 2010 7:52 pm

I have the LM on its own PCI firewire buss. I should try it without the extender, which by the way is the cablestogo extender (maybe there's a better one?).

Thank you for your reply woodhenge.

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Post by woodhenge » Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:31 pm

No problem...

I remembered reading on the Focusrite answerbase about a company that makes a 10meter firewire cable that doesn't need a repeater... might be worth looking into if you need the LM far away from your computer.

Personally, I tried using a hub as an extender and had erratic results. Once I ditched it, things got back to relatively normal. This latest software update seems to have nailed down the rest of the flakiness. :?

I found that link:

http://www.focusrite.com/answerbase/en/ ... php?id=206

I have a set mantra I follow with the LM and my mac which have helped make things ultra-stable. I'd be happy to share the routine if you are interested and are on 10.5/10.6.
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Post by rockstudio » Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:41 pm

Thank you for the link. I'll purchase one of those cables instead of using this cheap repeater. I am actually using windows, but thanks for your offer about your mantra!

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Post by rockstudio » Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:46 pm

I found a 15' cable at redco for $10.00, the link that you shared was from England.
http://www.redco.com/shopexd.asp?id=981
Which is long enough for my current studio. Thanks again!

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Post by kingtoad » Sat Aug 28, 2010 5:14 am

Another tip about Liquid Mix usage: always restart your daw in between loading different projects as sometimes the LM doesn't save/load settings properly otherwise.

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Post by rockstudio » Sat Aug 28, 2010 3:31 pm

Thanks for your tip kingtoad, that makes good sense.

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Post by kingmetal » Tue Aug 31, 2010 11:42 am

My LM16 is far and away the least reliable piece of gear I own, but I love it so much that I can't seem to get away from it. I was having tons of trouble with mine and resolved most of them by doing the following:

1. Put the LM16 on it's own firewire bus
2. Upgrade to Windows 7 64bit
3. Install the latest drivers

My LM16 has been running extremely well since I did all that, and in face Win7 was a huge performance improvement for my system all around (AMD Phenom X4 965 w/ 4gigs of RAM, Cubase 5.5, Focusrite Liquid Saffire 56) and I can run at lower latencies and with far fewer pops and clicks.

I think that Focusrite, like a lot of manufacturers, are starting to slowly drop support for their WinXP drivers. If you're not on 7 already, I'd suggest you give it a try -- I added a second hard drive to my system and did a test build that was fully separate from my regular rig (even used XP in production for a few weeks while I made the switch). Way painless.
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Post by rockstudio » Sat Sep 04, 2010 9:33 am

Thanks Kingmetal. Won't I have to upgrade some of my hardware to switch to a 64 bit OS? If not, i'll get another hard drive and do simultaneous installation like you did. Thanks for your help.

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Post by kingmetal » Sat Sep 04, 2010 6:42 pm

You likely will not have to upgrade anything to switch over, but if you run into trouble you can always just install the 32bit version of Windows 7.

Run this thing before you do anything: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/deta ... laylang=en
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Post by rockstudio » Wed Oct 06, 2010 2:53 pm

So Far So Good! I ordered a 15' Firewire cable from Redco and so far my Liquidmix launches the first time, every time!
I'll keep my fingers crossed just in case. I'm still afraid of using it on sessions because of the horrible crashes and mix engine failures that have occurred in the past.

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Post by kingmetal » Thu Oct 07, 2010 9:32 am

I personally found that the latency on the LM is way too high to use in real-time, or are you talking about mixdown sessions?
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Post by rockstudio » Fri Oct 08, 2010 6:23 am

Mixdown only. It sucks that when I export a mix in Nuendo using the LiquidMix, it bounces closer to real time, instead of super fast time.

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Post by kingmetal » Fri Oct 08, 2010 12:02 pm

Yeah I used to mix down in real time through my board so that wasn't an issue, but now that I've started to mix ITB it's kind of a pain. I imagine that since the audio has to pass through the DSP chip there's just no way for it to bounce faster than real time. I wish I didn't love that damn box so much, because it sure is a pain!
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