fast track usb mkII

Im new here,from Spain.I have been experimenting with ardour for a year or so,without an external sound card.Just a mic conected directly to the computer(palelitic I know).I want to buy a sound card.Not having much money Ive found Fast Track Usb MNK II for a reasonable price (115 euros),also Ive seen Line6 UX1(139 euros) .But not sure if its compatible with ardour.I have been searching for info in the internet,but haven found any definitive answer.Also my computer knowledge is limited,so Im looking for a “plug and use” thing.
Anyone know if its compatible? or of any other brand that will suit ok?
Thanks in advance

When considering soundcards, it’s not really a case of if they are compatible with ardour. Ardour doesn’t know (or care) what your audio interface is, ardour receives and sends audio to JACK.

JACK is the ‘intermediary’ layer, a server which takes the audio from JACK compatible applications such as ardour and routes it to the sound card drivers.

JACK doesn’t really know (or care) what your audio interface is either, JACK just talks to the drivers for your interface.

JACK can use either ALSA (drivers for normal PCI(e) and USB interfaces) or FFADO (for firewire interfaces) so the question really is, are there ALSA or FFADO drivers for a particular soundcard / interface, or is the interface a class compliant USB1 interface in which case no special drivers are required, it should ‘just work’.

The audio path to / from ardour looks something like:

Ardour -> JACK -> ALSA / FFADO -> soundcard -> speakers


Microphones -> soundcard -> ALSA / FFADO -> JACK -> Ardour

More information at:


Thanks linuxdsp.
Very clarifying.Ill take a look at the sites to see what I can learn.
Thanks again,sorry for the newbie question.

One more question
What is the difference between a firewire FFADO and an ALSA driver?
Thanks in advance

ALSA (drivers for normal PCI(e) and USB interfaces) or FFADO (for firewire interfaces)

I’m not sure there’s much I can add, without getting into very technical details which you probably don’t need to know about - unless you want to write the driver yourself :slight_smile:

“unless you want to write the driver yourself :)”
Not at all,dont have time for that.
Sorry,had to joke.Even if I wanted I wouldnt know how.Just an amaterur musician.
Thanks again.I think the info you gave me will be useful to choose the card.IIl start searching for one