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Old 11-12-2018, 11:54 AM   #1
Human being with feelings
Join Date: Apr 2015
Posts: 20
Default WDM works better than Asio in 2018?! (A.K.A. Line 6 drivers are dogs**t)

So I've been using an old Line 6 UX1 interface since 2012. Never really felt the need to upgrade since all I ever record is myself and 2 simultaneous inputs is plenty for that.

It's also got a nifty built-in, software-controlled guitar processor DSP thingy that allows you to record at low-latency regardless of the buffer size, and can even give you a dry signal of whatever you're recording, WHILE monitoring through the DSP (something called "Gearbox).

Pretty cool, cause it lets me set a high buffer size and go nuts with plugins while I record, and then just re-amp with any amp sim I want.

However, it performs *notoriously* bad at low buffer sizes, and by low I mean 128 bit 'cause it can't even go lower than that (2010 was a while ago after all and the tech is probably outdated as hell). Crackles all over the place and kills both my monitors and my ears, I'm sure every audio engineer here is aware of exactly what ear-piercing god-awful sound I am describing.

I used to think this was due to my PC being outdated and me not having enough CPU power and what not, but I recently upgraded my rig and got some pretty nice components, an i5 8400 among other things which just kills everything I throw at it. Yet the crackling at 128 bit still remains no matter what.

So either the interface or its drivers are the bottleneck then, my next train of thought was. So just for fun, I decided to ditch the Line 6 ASIO drivers for a bit and try recording with ASIO 4 ALL. That gave me some very weird artifacts at low buffer sizes, so then I went for Reaper's built-in WDM kernel streaming Windows XP driver, at 64 bits.

Woe and behold... no crackling, no artifacts - crystal clear signal at 64 bits. After a crazy stress-test with like 10 amp sims running in parallel, thing didn't even flinch. I was amazed. A WDM driver was giving me incomparably superior results to ASIO?

Am I crazy here? I've been using ASIO for 9 years now and have never had results like this. Isn't ASIO supposed to be the industry standard when it comes to this stuff? How is it possible that I'm getting such good results with WDM? Are the Line 6 drivers simply so outdated and useless that anything else is better?

I'd really like to hear what you folks have to say about this. I can offer sound clips or something if you don't believe me, I could hardly believe it myself.
Dzamija is offline   Reply With Quote