Advice on USB performance & suggestions to replace my Firewire Edirol FA-66


For the last few years I’ve been using an Edirol FA-66 Firewire card [1] and was very happy with it.

I’m about to change my good old laptop, and it seems Firewire is now absent from most laptops. Desktops are not an option for me, and I want to go for something slim, which means Firewire through Expresscard isn’t either, so I need an alternative to my Firewire FA-66.

→ I read a lot about USB devices generally exhibiting more delay than FireWire cards, but saw little numbers. Was that ever true / is it still true? Do I risk being disappointed? My usage involves offline Ardour mixing, but also live effects, so minimizing delay is critical for me.

→ If I go shopping for a linux friendly USB interface, what do you recommend? Should be around/minimum 6in-6out, and my maximum budget is 500$. At my local shop [2] I saw: [Focusrite Scarlett 18i8, Akai EIE I/O Pro, Presonus Audiobox 44VSL], but any other recommendation will be welcome :slight_smile:



Ronj Hello , I recently purchased a Roland UA- 55 interface Quad Capture, is practically the same to your Edirol interface , but with the difference that runs on USB .
You can comment on that previous work really well , sounding crystal clear , noise-free , and continues to have compressor , etc … has the new auto - sens function to automatically adjust the level prior .
One thing I liked was to control and settings from your computer. If you have a musician playing a piece and do not have the interface by hand, you can manage it from your computer.
Input channels are highly accurate LED level indicators and you do not need a power supply , as this is supplied from the computer.

Surely in the network and find many review you agree all the same. It’s a nice interface and has a lower price than the quality offered .

In closing I want to add that values ​​the option to buy a scarlett interface , but I finally decided by Roland for their quality. Focusrite in that price range does not offer such quality and incorporating previous are not very grateful.

These conclusions are the result of my experiences with these interfaces and testing .

Greetings !

PS: By the way, I work on Mac os X environment, I know if my interface is compatible with linux.

I recently purchased the native instruments komplete audio 6 for greater compatibility on linux ubuntu 16.04 LTS.

I read somewhere that the Apple Thunderbolt To Fire Wire adaptors work in linux. However, having said that I am unable to find the place where I read that. I think thunderbolt is just USB-C so (maybe) you don’t have to have Apple hardware to find it.

Found a ffado-user thread from Jan 14, 2017 which has several claims that thunderbolt to firewire can never work, and one where someone claims they have used thunderbolt to firewire for 3 years without problems. It seems that it is not allowed to put a direct link to that in this form, so you’ll need to look it up yourself. I’m in the same situation running a firewire device, so its an interesting question that whether thunderbolt to firewire an ever work.

One intriguing USB audio interface that it a little over your budget is the Arturia AudioFuse which is the only USB device for which the company has promised to supply a linux configuration program (though apparently they have not done so yet…). There are plenty of USB devices which will work in linux, but many require a custom non-linux software tool to configure, and thus may be somewhat crippled.