1 (edited by lsthwy 2021-11-28 17:39:01)

Topic: HDSP 9652 & Ferrofish A16, no sync

Hi there,

I'm not sure if this is a Linux related issue, but I thought to be safe I would post in here.
I just picked up a second-hand HDSP 9652 and Ferrofish A16 (AD/DA conv) that I'm using with a new Arch Linux build.

I was able to get hdspconf installed from the asla-tools AUR package.
It seems to recognise my card correctly.
I have two ADAT channels of the 9652 connected to the A16. The A16 reports that it is receiving signal okay on both ADAT A and B, but no sync lock on either.

I have the A16 set to receive clock over ADAT with the sample rate set to 44.1, which is what I've set it to in hdspconf.
In hdspconf I've confirmed that the System Clock mode is Master.

hdspconf also does not report sync lock on either of the ADAT channels.
To check something wasn't faulty with the card I looped ADAT 1 out of the 9652 to ADAT 1 in on the card (a tip I found while seaching these forums for a solution). In this case hdspconf reported sync on ADAT 1.. So it seems the card is working fine.

What should be my next steps to troubleshoot this?
I am brand-new to both of these devices, so it could be the case that I've overlooked something very simple.

I've installed the linux-rt kernel to rule out some issue with timings there.
I've also looped the ADAT out of the Ferrofish to its own in, and it reported sync lock in that case. So that seems to rule out a fault of both devices and cables.
Also, if I run a speaker-test, I can see all the channels light up on the hdspmixer. So internally things seem to be functioning as intended.
Still, no luck with the 9652 and A16 locking onto eachother however..

Re: HDSP 9652 & Ferrofish A16, no sync


I don't know if this has to do with Linux, and I coundn' t help you with that, because I have never used any Linux system, but
have you set the Ferrofish 's Clock Source to ADAT or Optical?

RME Gear: Digiface USB, HDSP 9632

3 (edited by ramses 2021-11-29 05:40:16)

Re: HDSP 9652 & Ferrofish A16, no sync

I assume in your setup the 9652 will act as clock master and the A16 as clock slave, right ?

Then the 9652 needs to be set as clock master (clock source = "internal"), don't know how to perform that on linux)
and the A16 needs to read clock from "ADAT A" or from "optical", I do not know how Ferrofish calls it in their setup.

The clock signal is sent out from the clock master though all of it's digital outputs.

You can perform a loop test 1st by plugging the ADAT cable on the 9652 from all of it's outputs to it's inputs.
By this you can check valid operation of all TOSLINK cables and of each of the ADAT ports.

Then I would simplify the setup and plug only one TOSLINK cable from 9652 "ADAT1" OUT to A16 "ADAT A" IN.
Check that you get with this one cable a synchronized ADAT connection.

Here a picture of the A16's back, you can see that the 1st ADAT channels are called ADAT A, next ADAT B.

If this one link works add a 2nd link from 9652 "ADAT2" OUT to A16 "ADAT B" IN.
This should simply work.

Then you can cable the remaining 2 TOSLINK cables from A16 ADAT A and B OUT to 9652 ADAT1/2 IN.

Maybe this posting how to set clock source in Linux is still valid:
https://discourse.ardour.org/t/rme-digi … on/83419/7

"(1) all ALSA controls can be manipulated with the command line too amixer
(2) you will likely find it easier to install the GUI tool “hdspconf” and use that."

So this is the command on the command line. From the prompt shown in the posting it can be executed with normal user privileges which makes sense as a normal non-privileged (non-root) user should be able to control the mixer:

$ amixer sset ‘Sync Mode’ Master

Maybe this information from the thread above is also still valid:
You can use alsactl -f foobar store to generate a config file and alsactl -f foobar restore to reload an edited (or unedited) version.

I think it would make sense to add this to one of the startup scripts for the default runlevel of your system, so that the setup gets a proper initialization on startup.

If this should not work for some reason, then place it to the profile of your shell that is being used by the shell only for login. Only for login, because it makes no sense to execute that again and again whenever you fork a new shell on your Desktop system.

The following guide gives you an overview about the different bash initialization files:
https://tldp.org/LDP/Bash-Beginners-Gui … 03_01.html
You could try to place it into ~/.bash_login

BR Ramses - UFX III, 12Mic, XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE, RayDAT, X10SRi-F, E5-1680v4, Win10Pro22H2, Cub13

Re: HDSP 9652 & Ferrofish A16, no sync

Thanks for the detailed response.
I tried all of this to no avail. I also went out to pick up a BNC cable and while the 9652 was able to lock on to the signal (with the Ferrofish set to Master), the Ferrofish still didn't report a lock on the signals and thus refused to output audio over the channels.
I suspect it's a fault with the Ferrofish. I've ordered another unit to replace it, and I guess I'll look into servicing it in the case it is indeed faulty. Seems a shame to get rid of a nice unit.

Re: HDSP 9652 & Ferrofish A16, no sync

Hello there,

I don't know if you found a solution to your sync problem... I think I could have a quite similar issue, I just posted about it :


Any insight much appreciated !