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Topic: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Since about one month the ADI-2 DAC ships with an ES9028Q2M as DAC chip. This is our first unit with ESS. In the transition process we had to learn a lot, about the chip itself, how it behaves, how to best use it, what influence the clocking has, what tech specs are missing in the 'secret' data sheet (tons of..), and how to make the DAC operate and behave as similar as possible to the former AKM chip.

The result was the shipping version FPGA 60 and DSP 39. This is a big step up from the former 35 / 35, the numbers indeed equal many steps of development. And we aren’t finished, some fine-tuning is always possible and will be done.

Such fine-tuning is the main reason for the new version FPGA 66 DSP 41. We managed to get the THD+N performance identical between asynchronous and quasi-synchronous mode, so the new option Varipitch has been removed. That mode (DAC fully synchronous to the incoming SteadyClock) is now always active. Its big advantage (and the reason to add it in the first place) was that in this mode the chip does not perform a random, short mute state after sample rate change with audio already playing. So we can now offer the performance of the ESS chip with the better behavior of the AKM chip.

But this update is also useful for older DACs, as it officially adds the new option Loopback to USB. It is described in text and block diagram of the updated manual 2.8:

http://www.rme-audio.de/downloads/adi2dacr_e.pdf

http://www.rme-audio.de/downloads/adi2dacr_d.pdf

https://archiv.rme-audio.de/images/adi2dac_loopback.png

This feature is mostly useful for Mac users. Under Windows anyone can use DIGICheck to visualize and analyze the current playback data, as our special ASIO support allows to read back that playback data. Under Mac OS this is not possible, and without analog input and digital output the obvious workaround (loopback) is not possible.

Now it is. All ADI-2 DACs have a record path for the digital SPDIF  input. The new option simply puts the current playback data there, so instead of the digital input data DigiCheck will see the playback data. You even have the option to send back the pre FX data (pure playback) or post FX data (including EQ etc. and volume control). Finally DigiCheck can be fully used with the ADI-2 DAC on the Mac.

Enjoy!

Downloads:

Win: https://www.rme-audio.de/downloads/fut_madiface_win.zip

Mac: https://www.rme-audio.de/downloads/fut_madiface_mac.zip

Edit: Another change was missing in the readme (added just now).  CC mode: at sample rate mismatch USB record data will be muted, the USB sample rate shown red in the Status Overview screen. To explain: if you feed SPDIF at 44.1 kHz and connect an iPhone via USB (Class Compliant mode), then want to record this SPDIF signal with an app that only supports and works at 48 kHz, the 48 in the USB column will be shown in red color and the USB record data will be muted. Otherwise - as the unit does not include sample rate conversion - the recording is quite distorted.

Regards
Matthias Carstens
RME

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Thanks again for all the hard work. Currently hooked up to my Squeezebox Touch as a transport (thankful for that support as well). But I look forward to trying Digicheck on Mac when I get a chance.

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Oops. I am waiting for the pro update badly…

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Flashed the firmware from 39 to 41, all works fine.

I don't know if the firmware 41 changed the toslink input volume or not, seems it is less "OVR" now.

Pacifist, dumb, not stupid
Listen music out from a box which sounds
Reading words on paper/ screen

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Very interresting and exciting news. Cant wait to try this out! RME rocks!!!

RME ADI2 DAC fs. Digiface USB FF UCXII. HEGEL H80. KEF Ls50. FOSTEX T50RP + alots of other gear.

6 (edited by Viennacalling 2021-08-03 10:54:47)

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

One more question
What is the correct version for digicheck?

I found digicheck 0.73 mac

But this is 32 bit and has to be updated, is telling me Mr. Apple.

https://archiv.rme-audio.de/downloads/d … icheck.php

Adi-2 Pro, Adi-2 Dac Fs

7 (edited by Johannes AU 2021-08-03 11:32:46)

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Viennacalling wrote:

One more question
What is the correct version for digicheck?

I found digicheck 0.73 mac

But this is 32 bit and has to be updated, is telling me Mr. Apple.

https://archiv.rme-audio.de/downloads/d … icheck.php

It depends on which version of MacOS you are using.

I am using BugSur, latest DigiCheck NG version is 0.86 Beta 2 (1)
<<Universal binary, runs natively on Intel and M1 machines. DigiCheck NG V 0.86 Beta 2 requires macOS 10.13 (High Sierra) or up. >>

Hope it helps.

P.S. Software can be download here https://www.rme-audio.de/downloads.html
select the software at right hand side "Select software" drop down. Ignore the Left Hand side "Please choose"

Pacifist, dumb, not stupid
Listen music out from a box which sounds
Reading words on paper/ screen

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Hey, sorry for being dumb, but would the ADI-2 Pro need the ESS chip to work seamlessly with DIGICheck or is it already fully working with the current Pro model?

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

there will be no pro version with ess chip

The digicheck feature for pro is not available now on Mac. It will be added in the next firmware.

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

ning wrote:

there will be no pro version with ess chip

The digicheck feature for pro is not available now on Mac. It will be added in the next firmware.

Oh cool, was an estimated timeline for the next firmware shared anywhere?

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

I'm also waiting for that. MC is the only one that knows the answer.

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Thank you ning for this essential information

Adi-2 Pro, Adi-2 Dac Fs

13 (edited by dpippel 2021-08-07 16:58:50)

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Anyone else having trouble running the RME USB Series Flash Tool under macOS 11.5.1? When I double-click the executable after unpacking the ZIP file, the Flash Tool icon animates for a second as if it's executing, but I get nothing. There is no RME process running when I check in Activity Monitor. So, I'm unable to update my DAC FS firmware.

I've tried rebooting and downloading a new copy of the tool, but get the same behavior.

EDIT: Problem resolved. I had connected the DAC FS to my iPad dock via USB several weeks ago, and forgot to move the connection back to my MacBook Pro. DUH!! Firmware has been updated.

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

dpippel wrote:

Anyone else having trouble running the RME USB Series Flash Tool under macOS 11.5.1? When I double-click the executable after unpacking the ZIP file, the Flash Tool icon animates for a second as if it's executing, but I get nothing. There is no RME process running when I check in Activity Monitor. So, I'm unable to update my DAC FS firmware.

I've tried rebooting and downloading a new copy of the tool, but get the same behavior.

EDIT: Problem resolved. I had connected the DAC FS to my iPad dock via USB several weeks ago, and forgot to move the connection back to my MacBook Pro. DUH!! Firmware has been updated.

My motto: Always check the cables first!! big_smile

RME ADI2 DAC fs. Digiface USB FF UCXII. HEGEL H80. KEF Ls50. FOSTEX T50RP + alots of other gear.

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Does this mean the ES DAC versions shipped don’t need a firmware update? Which serial numbers can be identified for ES DAC versions.

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Firmware and Driver install MAC OS BigSur.

Anyone on BigSur Mac OS M1?
Do i only need to download and install the file below listed on RME Download website area?

Mac OS Flash Update Tool for MADIface XT/USB/Pro, OctaMic XTC, ADI-2 Pro Series & DAC, Digiface USB/Dante, UFX II
2021-08-02
fut_madiface_mac.zip

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Soundizer wrote:

Does this mean the ES DAC versions shipped don’t need a firmware update? Which serial numbers can be identified for ES DAC versions.


Thought you mean ESS DAC version, it will have a letter "C" after the serial number at the sticker above the USB input port at the DAC.

Pacifist, dumb, not stupid
Listen music out from a box which sounds
Reading words on paper/ screen

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Soundizer wrote:

Firmware and Driver install MAC OS BigSur.

Anyone on BigSur Mac OS M1?
Do i only need to download and install the file below listed on RME Download website area?

Mac OS Flash Update Tool for MADIface XT/USB/Pro, OctaMic XTC, ADI-2 Pro Series & DAC, Digiface USB/Dante, UFX II
2021-08-02
fut_madiface_mac.zip


Yes, please.

Pacifist, dumb, not stupid
Listen music out from a box which sounds
Reading words on paper/ screen

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

Hello - sorry you lost me somewhere in the different versions...

I have an ADI DAC 2 FS with the v.33
Am I supposed to do a firmware update please?

Tank you and best regards

20 (edited by cmblux 2021-08-29 20:22:33)

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

cmblux wrote:

Hello - sorry you lost me somewhere in the different versions...

I have an ADI DAC 2 FS with the v.33
Am I supposed to do a firmware update please?

Tank you and best regards

Why do I ask such questions anyhow?
I should have known that RME would make sure that the Firmware Update Tool has all the answers ;-)
Thank you - thumbs up again

V.41 installed within less than 30 sec.

21 (edited by ramses 2021-08-29 20:43:37)

Re: Firmware Update ADI-2 DAC 66 / 41 - Loopback

cmblux wrote:

Hello - sorry you lost me somewhere in the different versions...

I have an ADI DAC 2 FS with the v.33
Am I supposed to do a firmware update please?

Tank you and best regards

1. What computer do you have ? Windows or Apple ?
2. What ADI-2 DAC FS do you have, with AKM or with ESS chip ? Hint: ESS chip has brickwall D/A filter instead of SD LD.

I understood it this way, if you have a
a) device with ESS chip -> update to get the latest optimizations for the ESS chip and loopback
b) Mac -> update to get loopback support

In all other cases: an upgrade of the ADI-2 DACs firmware to v41 would not hurt, because it contains upgrades of general interest, from the README in the drivers ZIP archive:

07/27/2021 ADI-2 DAC:FPGA 66, DSP 41: First update for units with ESS chip: Option Varipitch removed, because no longer needed. All ADI-2 DAC: New option Loopback to USB, see updated manual. CC mode: at sample rate mismatch USB record data will be muted, the USB sample rate shown red in the Status Overview screen.

03/26/2021 ADI-2 DAC DSP 35, ADI-2 Pro FPGA 250 DSP 102. All Pro: improved performance of SRC, headroom reduced to +3 dB. New option 'SRC Gain dig' to preserve digital headroom during USB recording and digital loop-through. Pro and DAC with MRC: Over display in level meters now takes actual headroom into account (+2.5 dB Line/IEM, +1 dB Phones). All DAC: When loading a setup, the current sample rate is not changed.

03/17/2021 Digiface USB: v17 supports new PCBs. Devices with V14 do not need to be updated. ADI-2 DAC FGA 35, ADI-2 Pro FPGA 249: Improved SteadyClock, filter and phase control. SteadyClock’s jitter filter now operates down to 1 Hz instead of about 200 Hz, thus reduces even very low frequency input jitter efficiently.

09/17/2020 ADI-2 Pro updated to 238/98, ADI-2 DAC updated to 34/34. Current peak on power-on reduced.

BR
Ramses
X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10Pro21H1, Cub11Pro, UFX+, XTC, 12Mic, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE, RayDAT