Topic: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

Hi there!

I'm fairly new at this;
I want to expand the inputs/outputs I have on my fireface UCX (i love that machine).
I acquired an extra fireface UC.

Now: how can i connect them? I want the UCX to be the master, basically I just want to use the extra inputs/outputs of the UC, but use it all as 1 system and see the extra inputs/ouputs in totalmix.

Could you please help with explaining which cables to use, how to connect, and how to set it up in totalmix?

Thank you!!!

2 (edited by ramses 2019-12-06 09:04:37)

Re: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

UCX and UC use the same USB driver.
So you could connect both via USB to PC and access both with your DAW.
You only need to
- clock synch both devices by i.e. using the koaxial SPDIF port which is not used in most cases
- ensure to always choose the same ASIO buffersize for both devices

You will have to work then with 2 instances of TM FX. You have the flexibility to use either one or two TM FX windows for that. One window is more compact, then you simply need to select the proper device in the upper right corner.
Alternatively open another TM FX window, select UCX in one and UC in the other TM FX window and
position the windows nicely on your screen.
Note: you can only route channels inside of one recording interface.

The advantage of this setup, to connect both devices by USB, is:
1. that you are not limited to 8 channels @44.1/48 kHz (10 channels if you also count coax SPDIF)
2. if you use higher clock rates then the amount of channels that you could route between UC and UCX would shrink to
- 4 channels @88.2/96 kHz
- 2 channels @176.4/192 kHz
3. you can use the ADAT ports of both devices (2 ports !) for other things, like i.e. connect additional mic preamps or AD/DA converter via ADAT

The alternative way ....
would be to connect the UC in standalone mode behind the UCX.
For this you need TOSLINK cables which can be up to 15m long, maybe even 20m might work.
These cables are fine: https://www.thomann.de/de/mutec_optisches_kabel_1m.htm
The rest is simply routing, to route the channels as needed through the ADAT channels.

TotalMix FX routing, see manual, my primer, RME tutorial videos or one of the many articles on this forums who dealt already with it. Easiest to use Submix Mode.

https://www.tonstudio-forum.de/blog/ind … rnal-equi/

https://www.tonstudio-forum.de/blog/ind … al-Videos/

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, Win10 Pro 1909, Cubase, UFX+, Octamic XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS BE/R BE, RayDAT, ARC USB

Re: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

A much better alternative might have been, to sell the UCX and to get the UFX II or even UFX+ as the prices dropped significantly.
The flagship interface has a better analog section and you get get DURec (and MADI in the case of UFX+) on top.
And then all ports can be operated in one TM FX instance.

https://www.thomann.de/de/rme_fireface_uc.htm €859
https://www.thomann.de/de/rme_fireface_ucx.htm €1169
= €2028

https://www.thomann.de/de/rme_fireface_ufx_2.htm €1980
https://www.thomann.de/de/rme_fireface_ufx_2.htm €2139

For MADI (+64 channels) only €159 more !!!! Thats awesome !!!
The unit costed initially 2699 !! So it dropped in price by €560.

You should sell/give back both and get the UFX+.

Then you have plenty of port reserves, a device which can be operated fully standalone by the display, you can connect the ARC USB directly to the device, you can connect the device by either USB3 or thunderbolt.
This offers you a lot more flexibility for this price and all in one rack unit which is still nicely transportable.

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, Win10 Pro 1909, Cubase, UFX+, Octamic XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS BE/R BE, RayDAT, ARC USB

Re: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

Thanks for the replies guys.
I considered an UFX, however, in my current space 19 inch is a no go.
Luckily I already had the UCX, and got the UC for 400euros.

I use MAC, no PC.
isn't it a lot better to connect the UC as slave to the UCX using 2 ADAT cables and the wordclock?
I would prefer not to have two instances of totalmix.

why would that give me disadvantages? someone at RME told me that I could use the 8 inputs / outputs of the UC as additional to the ones of my UCX... I just want to know how to set it up :-)

5 (edited by ramses 2019-12-06 09:51:36)

Re: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

> isn't it a lot better to connect the UC as slave to the UCX using 2 ADAT cables and the wordclock?
> I would prefer not to have two instances of totalmix.

I didnt force you to go that way, it was meant as a good option and I told you as well that you can
connect the UC behind the UCX.

> why would that give me disadvantages? someone at RME told me that I could use the 8 inputs /
> outputs of the UC as additional to the ones of my UCX... I just want to know how to set it up :-)

You can do that and I also told you where I see the advantages of the other setup, again:

The advantage of this setup, to connect both devices by USB, is:
1. that you are not limited to 8 channels @44.1/48 kHz (10 channels if you also count coax SPDIF)
2. if you use higher clock rates then the amount of channels that you could route between UC and UCX would shrink to
- 4 channels @88.2/96 kHz
- 2 channels @176.4/192 kHz
3. you can use the ADAT ports of both devices (2 ports !) for other things, like i.e. connect additional mic preamps or AD/DA converter via ADAT

Word clock is not required, get clock on the slave via ADAT IN.

To sum up, you have 2 choices, you only need to choose.
If 1 TM FX instance is your final goal, then connect the UC behind the UCX via ADAT.
Temporarily you will have to connect both devices via USB until you have the routing on the UCX and UC finalized.

Stand-alone mode on the UC is easy to handle, from manual: "The Fireface UC has an internal memory to permanently store all configuration data. The data is stored directly after any change, and are loaded at power-on."
Once the routing is ok, you simply need to disconnect the UC from USB and it will remember the config.

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, Win10 Pro 1909, Cubase, UFX+, Octamic XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS BE/R BE, RayDAT, ARC USB

6 (edited by tendingtropic 2019-12-06 11:05:32)

Re: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

Thanks guys for the help so far, sorry for being such a newbie.

I understand the two choices now. Since I don't record higher than 48Khz, and don't need the ADAT ports for anything else, i choose the option to connect them via ADAT, i really want to arrange erverything in 1 totalmix window.

Remaining questions (in bold):
Temporarily you will have to connect both devices via USB until you have the routing on the UCX and UC finalized.
what do you mean here, connect both via USB to the computer, or connect both to each other? (i don't think i have a cable for that)

Stand-alone mode on the UC is easy to handle, from manual: "The Fireface UC has an internal memory to permanently store all configuration data. The data is stored directly after any change, and are loaded at power-on." Once the routing is ok, you simply need to disconnect the UC from USB and it will remember the config.

last question: any site/youtube tutorial you recommend for the totalmix routing part (setting up the adat inputs in totalmix window of the standalone unit, etc)

Thanks everyone,

already loving this forum, and RME
but still a noob.

hope to contribute in the future.

7 (edited by ramses 2019-12-06 22:01:56)

Re: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

> what do you mean here, connect both via USB to the computer, or connect both to each other?

Both cards to the computer everything else is not possible and makes no sense.

> last question: any site/youtube tutorial you recommend for the totalmix routing part

See my 1st reply, I sent you already the links.

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, Win10 Pro 1909, Cubase, UFX+, Octamic XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS BE/R BE, RayDAT, ARC USB

Re: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

thanks! will try it today

9 (edited by tendingtropic 2019-12-09 07:59:53)

Re: Expand I/O of UCX with extra UC (daisy chain)

It worked!

Final 3 questions:
1. Is it normal that the red host light keeps lit on the standalone (UC) unit?
2. Should I go for single speed?
3. What should I fill in for the EQ+D and word clock term options?

Thanks for all the help here guys!