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  • Great thread, and I'm pleased to see the folks from Phonic participating in it. I ordered my Firefly yesterday. As the previous owner of a Helix Firewire 18 board, I'm familiar with Phonic and the quality of its products.



    The need for a new interface was driven by the fact that firewire has all but disappeared from new laptops. I ordered a very nice I7 based laptop, but it has neither firewire or a PCMCIA slot to add it. Since my the inputs and outputs of my Saffire Pro 24 are completely full and it is firewire only, I set about to find a new interface. The two contenders in my range were the MOTU 828mk3 hybrid and the Presonus Audiobox VSL. Neither unit met my specifications exactly, and the Phonic seems to provide everything that I need. The price of the Phonic is very attractive, but that is not what drove my decision to buy it.



    The Presonus didn't really give me much more than I already have between my Saffire and my ADA8000 which is connected via ADAT to give me enough line inputs for my synths. The MOTU unit seems like a good fit for me, but there are reported problems with it and I've never used a MOTU product before while I have owned a Phonic board. My only real concern with the Firefly is that the current drivers are over a year old according to the Phonic site and I am wondering what kind of support will be available in the future. However, if the Windows 7 drivers and the firmware is solid, that shouldn't be an issue.



    I'll post my experiences in a week or so after I've received and installed the new interface.

    Comment


    • Hi guys !



      I'm very happy to see a hot topic about this device. I'm experiencing a few problems with it and maybe some of you have had the same in the past.



      I purchased the Firefly 808U almost 3 years ago. I remember being quite disappointed back then because I couldn't hook it up to my unibody MacBook, lacking the FireWire port (this version of the macbook has been discontinued very quickly, few people have this problem). I have used it with a tower PC to make some recordings, but it would have been so easier if it was a laptop...



      Only a week ago I noticed there was a firmware update which would make it Mac/USB-compatible. So everything went quite good to get the update done (except the broken links on Phonic's website), but once hooked up to the Mac ... nothing showed up. In my opinion the firmware just didn't install because I didn't update the drivers at first and I could still use it on the Windows PC. I have then tried again with divers 5.21, 5.22.1, 0.77 (the CD version included with device) without luck.



      Today I had the good idea to try the update through Firewire instead of USB which improved the USB "new hardware" difficulties but here again, I can't use it on Mac. I made a video of the whole update process so you guys can tell me where something goes wrong? Or maybe my device is just too old? Or there might be a technical issue ? (I'm having another issue with the S/PDIF, but as Phonic's tech support advised me to use a good quality SPDIF cable, I just ordered one and I will post the results tomorrow)



      Link to the video : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hr5DZXLWSrw



      By the way: i have 16 days left for the warranty to expire, that's the reason why suddenly the health of my Firefly 808U is becoming a priority for me





      Thanks in advance for your support !



      Guillaume.

      Comment








      • Quote Originally Posted by collegetown
        View Post

        Hi SoundDsnr23



        It doesn't sound like a well compatible situation for the issue you encountered, it could be driver issue or compatibility issue



        between program and our ASIO driver.



        But please try a driver re-install using the drivers from the following link



        http://210.243.85.26/beta/distributor/Phonic_FF808U.rar



        We think you know it but it's worth to mention again that please select the Phonic ASIO driver for your DAW use! (Always



        install the driver BEFORE connecting device.)



        The sampling rate setting should be bi-directional which means you are able to adjust sampling rate in your DAW or your



        control panel without specific sequence!



        BUT we did encounter your situation when we were doing mainstream DAW compatibility testing! We found a operation



        sequence-selecting sampling rate first at Phonic control panel- that's able to fix this issue. If you can select all supported



        sample rate at Phonic control panel, you might have to find a specific sequence to fix this.



        But we can't say it works for all DAW with same sequence.



        Could you please try and tell us what you find so we may better assist you fixing this issue?



        Eric




        Hello,

        I am developing software which uses ASIO devices. So far I have tested it with a lot of devices and sometimes I stumble uppon problems with some interfaces. The Phonic Firefly 808 Universal seems to be one of them..



        I use Windows 7 (64bit) and connect the 808 via USB.



        I found out that problem occurs when the host application requests the device to change its sample rate (ASIOSetSampleRate()) which is different than the one in hardware.

        The problem which causes crashes is that the next call to ASIOCreateBuffers() returns ASE_OK (no problem), BUT all the buffer pointers are "0"!!!



        This is a serious bug not a compatibility issue!



        Maybe there are some beta drivers or something I can try to fix this?



        For those who are not programmers - please excuse me for polluting your thread! I am not saying the interface is bad or something, just that the ASIO driver could be flawed..

        Comment


        • This is the single best thread that I've seen on the Phonic Firefly 808 that I've seen anywhere. So I'm hoping you all may have some help to offer.



          First, the problem:



          I bought my FF808 in May to add some channels to my small home studio. All is good with it as a stand-alone unit. I use Reaper and/or Fruity Loops as my DAW. I had been using my EMU 1616M, which I was also happy with.



          Thinking I might be able to use both simultaneously to record our band rehearsals, I decide to by some ADAT cables and connect them. That would allow me to do two things:
          1. Use one driver in my DAW for all the channels, the 1616m only supports two channels through ASIO4ALL

          2. Apply a little reverb to the vocal channels from the FF808 along using EMU's awesome PatchMix DSP



          But....



          No matter what I do, I can't get the ADAT Channels from the FF808 to send a signal to the EMU. Even if the ADAT lights are showing output on the front panel of the FF808.



          To solve this, I have tried every variation of Sync available on the two units.
          1. Use the EMU as the Sync Source as ADAT only or as Optical S/PDIF

          2. Use the FF808 as Sync Source

          3. Chosen the Output format for EMU (when sync source) as both S/PDIF or AES/EBU

          4. Changed Cables

          5. Re-installed drivers



          Essentially, nada.



          Some other oddness. As soon as I open my DAW, the synchronization light (whichever I've chosen) starts flashing, and the FF808 manual is pretty vague about that.



          Sometimes changing the sample frequency on the device acting as Sync Source does change the Sample frequency on the other device, sometimes not.



          As far as the EMU indicators show, I have achieved "locked" status in a variety of configurations. According to EMU this means that the ADAT or S/PDIF devices are in a synchronized state.



          I have not (yet) tried pushing a signal from the EMU 1616m to the Firefly 808 as that would defeat the second of my desires above, or would it?



          Finally I decided to attempt to treat the FF808 as a stand-alone unit, set it up to the most successful configuration I'd had yet, and unplugged the firewire cable.



          Nothing.



          Specs of the system.



          EMU1616m PCIe- latest stable drivers available from Creative

          Firefly 808 - Running Firewire connection through a TI 1394 bus adapter (Firewire) latest drivers for both Firefly and Firewire Card

          Intel quad core based PC running Windows Vista 64

          8Gb RAM

          Reaper 4.261/x64





          If anybody has any guidance to offer, I would deeply appreciate it.

          Comment


          • I don't believe ASIO4ALL allows you to aggregate ASIO drivers. The only companies I know of whose interfaces allow that are Echo and Roland.



            As you're using Windows, the answer may be as simply as using WDM drivers...try that, and see what happens.
            Simplicity, my new album project, is now streamable from my YouTube channel.

            Subscribe, like, and share the links!

            Comment


            • ASIO4All v2.1 allows you to aggregate all of your WDM devices, but the problem with that is that the 1616m only shows two 32 bit, 192K channels.



              Thanks for the quick thought, but that's not it.



              The main and most obvious problem appears to be the ADAT connection between the two light-pipe enabled devices. If I insert a peak meter on one of the ADAT channels in the EMU Patchmix, you'd think I'd see a signal level from the corresponding FF808 analog channel. Nothing.

              Comment








              • Quote Originally Posted by Whalebonemusic
                View Post

                ASIO4All v2.1 allows you to aggregate all of your WDM devices




                Okay, so your host is set to WDM and you're using WDM drivers for the hardware...but...








                ...the 1616m only shows two 32 bit, 192K channels.



                The main and most obvious problem appears to be the ADAT connection between the two light-pipe enabled devices. If I insert a peak meter on one of the ADAT channels in the EMU Patchmix, you'd think I'd see a signal level from the corresponding FF808 analog channel. Nothing.



                Do you have the latest 64-bit drivers from E-Mu - not the beta ones that were available for a seeming eternity?
                Simplicity, my new album project, is now streamable from my YouTube channel.

                Subscribe, like, and share the links!

                Comment


                • As far as I know, yes. Just downloaded the latest ones and installed this week.

                  Comment


                  • Also, creative.com seems to be having some problems right now... so I can't even dig further there.



                    I am sooo disappointed by this.

                    Comment


                    • I just got around to hooking up my Firefly808 and intend on using it with Adobe Audition 3.0. I've hooked up a couple mics to the mic/instr 1 and so far, so good. the only issue really is changing sample rates freezes the unit. I was wondering if anybody here has any experience running the 808 with Adobe Audition 3.0?

                      Comment


                      • Also i purchased a desktop to be solely dedicated to running the 808... Its a Dell intel Core i5 2.8 GHz processor 6 gig RAM. Should be good to go for the Firefly.

                        Comment


                        • I've had my Firefly for a couple of weeks now and love it. I am a hobbyist and the features match my current needs perfectly for recording guitar, vocals, and keyboards and there is room for growth via ADAT as well as adding outboard preamps. The unit is very solid with the sole exception being the front panel knobs that aren't secured to the faceplate as Anderton noted in his review. However, they seem well secured for normal use barring accidents. The units are now grey instead of silver and it's a very attractive piece. The various lights, knobs, and inputs are laid out clearly and intuitively.



                          Setup was a breeze, and there were no problems with the Windows drivers on my x64 Win7 i7 laptop with 16gb of memory. I plugged everything in after installing the newest drivers and it worked with no hassles. Last week I hooked up 4 mics and 2 stereo signals from synths and filled all 8 channels with no problem at all. The included mixer software is very simple and intuitive and works great. The one comment I will make on the mixer is that it does not offer as many features as others that I have used, the most recent being Focusrite's MixControl. Routing doesn't seem to be as flexible and there doesn't seem to be an option for varying multiple headphone mixes. But what it does do, it does simply and very well.



                          While it's too early to make a final judgement on the sound of the preamps, I like what I'm hearing so far. The Firefly is is a lot of interface for the price, and I would not hesitate to recommend it to others. As I mentioned earlier in the thread, this is my second Phonic product and I have been very impressed with both pieces.

                          Comment


                          • Travst: I wouldn't get your hopes too high with respect to ADAT expansion. I'm now on my second unit, replaced by the store I bought it from. I have done absolutely everything recommended by the manufacturer, and still don't have a working ADAT connection to my other interface. I've spent days trying to make it work. It has been a frustrating experience to say the least. At this point, I'm considering treating the money I spent on the unit as a net loss and posting a video of me taking a chainsaw to the Firefly 808 on youtube.

                            Comment








                            • Quote Originally Posted by Whalebonemusic
                              View Post

                              Travst: I wouldn't get your hopes too high with respect to ADAT expansion. I'm now on my second unit, replaced by the store I bought it from. I have done absolutely everything recommended by the manufacturer, and still don't have a working ADAT connection to my other interface. I've spent days trying to make it work. It has been a frustrating experience to say the least. At this point, I'm considering treating the money I spent on the unit as a net loss and posting a video of me taking a chainsaw to the Firefly 808 on youtube.




                              Sounds like I should plug in my ADA8000 and test it out. That would be very frustrating to encounter, sorry to hear you're having trouble with it.

                              Comment


                              • I'll throw in my 2 cents on the Firefly 808, for whatever they're worth...



                                I bought my 808 about 3 years ago. For the money, it seemed like it would be hard to go wrong. The box is packed with features.



                                Everything worked fine for about 10 months, and then, out of the blue, I started to notice crackling in my recordings. They started out as a sporadic thing, and within a couple months I couldn't record more than 10 seconds without it sounding like I was making popcorn. I'm recording at home, very rarely more than two or three tracks at a time.



                                I tried to contact Phonic. Tried. Because, see, they don't exist. They're imported by US Music Corporation. Phonic will not give you support because they don't have a US presence. You can post on their international website, but at best you might get a message board response. After calling Musician's Friend (retailer the 808 was purchased from) and demanding information, I was given contact information for US Music Corporation. It took them weeks--I'm not exaggerating--WEEKS to troubleshoot my issues with me and eventually decide to just replace my 808. The crackling persisted regardless of hardware/software settings.



                                I received the new 808 (which I was told was actually a refurb) and it worked. Awesome. Until last month, when it started crackling again. I know... I'll look for software/driver updates on Phonic's website... Oh, right, their last driver updates are from over a year ago. I've once again fiddled with every hardware and software setting I can (buffer size, recording bitrate, and every other option Logic has), to no avail. The device is not usable at this point unless I want to record tracks with pops and crackles. Mind you, this is on a 2.5GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 iMac with 16GB RAM. I should have no problem trying to record ONE track at a time.



                                The same issue, on 2 devices? It can't be coincidence, can it?



                                Sadly, this time I have no warranty and I'm left saving up to buy a new interface, which will not be a Phonic. I would highly advise against purchasing any Phonic device if you value tech support/customer service, and if you value having things that work.

                                Comment













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