Topic: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Hello,
I want to expand my ancient Fireface 400 with a superior 2 channel input. As only the AD conversion is crucial, I' ve ended up looking at the ADI-2 FS. The manual says:

"..the ADI-2 FS has been completely redesigned – for example with the complete analog input stage of the
award-winning ADI-2 Pro.." https://www.rme-audio.de/ADI-2-FS.html

To me this sounds like that a recording of the ADI-2 FS should sound the same like a recording of the ADI-2  Pro as long as I am not  using some of the special features of the ADI-2 Pro.  Can someone confirm this? Thanks

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Neither of these converters is designed for a specific "sound" - faithful reproduction of the original is the idea...

Regards
Daniel Fuchs
RME

3 (edited by ramses 2022-07-21 15:21:15)

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Hi Purr,

welcome to the forum.

I would sell the FF400 while it still works and people are interested. You can then use the money to counter-finance a UCX II. I see on reverb.com people still want to get around $600 for it. Whether they get this amount of money is another story.

But this doesn't look to bad. So lets say around €600 for the FF400 plus the €666 for the ADI-2 FS are about €1200.
The UCX II costs around €1300. With the UCX II you would get the latest design, modern converter with better specs, the same good Mic preamps of the UFX II, even features like DURec and Autoset .. Additionally you will have again warranty on this unit. If you live in the US or UK Syntax sometimes offers 3 or even 5y warranty on RME products.

With the help of my Excel overview you can easily see the clear differences / advantages of UCX II:
https://www.tonstudio-forum.de/attachme … 4-08-xlsx/

I would 1st buy the UCX II .. because this could last some time. As soon as you get it sell the FF400. Thomann in Germany e.g. charges you if the device is there to be shipped to you, so you do not loose money during waiting.

BR Ramses
UFX+, 12Mic, XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE, RayDAT, X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10Pro22H2, Cub12Pro

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Purr wrote:

Hello,
I want to expand my ancient Fireface 400 with a superior 2 channel input. As only the AD conversion is crucial, I' ve ended up looking at the ADI-2 FS. The manual says:

"..the ADI-2 FS has been completely redesigned – for example with the complete analog input stage of the
award-winning ADI-2 Pro.." https://www.rme-audio.de/ADI-2-FS.html

To me this sounds like that a recording of the ADI-2 FS should sound the same like a recording of the ADI-2  Pro as long as I am not  using some of the special features of the ADI-2 Pro.  Can someone confirm this? Thanks

I dont know what you are recording, but with most, if not all sources, results will be audibly identical, be it from the fireface or an adi.

Vincent, Amsterdam
https://soundcloud.com/thesecretworld
Babyface pro fs, HDSP9652+ADI-8AE, HDSP9632

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Thanks for your replies.

@RME Support: Okay, I'll put my question this way: Will the ADI-2 FS fullfill the idea of faithful reproduction of the original the same way like the ADI-2 Pro?

@ramses: Sounds like a decent plan. I will consider it. But if @vinark is right and it makes all no difference, I will stick with my Fireface until its broken;) I just thought there is some special quality of the reproduction of the original by the ADI-2 interfaces.

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Still curious what you are recording.

Vincent, Amsterdam
https://soundcloud.com/thesecretworld
Babyface pro fs, HDSP9652+ADI-8AE, HDSP9632

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

vinark wrote:

Still curious what you are recording.

Acoustic: bassguitar, guitar, percussion and sometimes vocals. Electric: bassguitar, guitar, synthesizer und outboard effects.
In the last two decades I mainly worked in the box, only recording acoustic instruments when needed. For about 4 years I've increasingly used analog gear, which seems to me an improvement. Since I've bought this year a d-box, using the DA of it (which I prefer in A/B testing towards the Firefaces DA), I am thinking about to change the AD too. That's the whole story.

8 (edited by KaiS 2022-07-22 13:51:22)

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

If you hear a quality difference between Fireface 400 and d-box you definitely should go the ADI-2 DAC or ADI-2 Pro route.

For a valid comparison, always make sure both devices under test deliver the EXACT same level.

You need some kind of metering to achieve this, like RME Digicheck, feed from the DUT’s outputs.

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

KaiS wrote:

If you hear a quality difference between Fireface 400 and d-box you definitely should go the ADI-2 DAC or ADI-2 Pro route.

For a valid comparison, always make sure both devices under test deliver the EXACT same level.

You need some kind of metering to achieve this, like RME Digicheck, feed from the DUT’s outputs.

I've tried to match the levels as close as possible by ear. Which isn't very scientific and will be maybe biased in this concern. And because I used the analog input stage of the d-box for the Fireface to feed my monitors, it's definitly biased here too.

10 (edited by ramses 2022-07-22 17:45:44)

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Purr wrote:

Thanks for your replies.

@RME Support: Okay, I'll put my question this way: Will the ADI-2 FS fullfill the idea of faithful reproduction of the original the same way like the ADI-2 Pro?

@ramses: Sounds like a decent plan. I will consider it. But if @vinark is right and it makes all no difference, I will stick with my Fireface until its broken;) I just thought there is some special quality of the reproduction of the original by the ADI-2 interfaces.

Vinark argues on the basis that converter differences are very small.

Personally, I consider A/D conversion to be less critical than D/A conversion. Microphones, for example, have significantly poorer SNR values compared to todays A/D converter. And as far as D/A is concerned, with a multi-tack recording, the spatiality is only created during the mixing (except when perhaps doing stereo recording).

Various components are responsible for ensuring that spatiality can be optimally reproduced: room, loudspeakers, amplifiers, D/A converters.

Kai once posted why he prefers the slow filter on the ADI-2 Pro.
https://forum.rme-audio.de/viewtopic.ph … 68#p177168
https://forum.rme-audio.de/viewtopic.ph … 41#p186341
You you also can assume that KaiS has also a very good room, excellent active monitors etc.

These filters all have pros/cons among them conversion speed, etc. But to have selectable filters you need a product where this can be selected. All recording interfaces have usually AD/DA converter where converter latency is low and linear frequency response is well in the hearing range.

But when choosing such product with selectable AD/DA filter then you need to get either ADI-2 DAC or Pro and then also everything else has to be right in order to be able to perceive it at all, quite apart from the fact that we all hear differently. And by that I mean both listening habits and hearing ability (!).

If you really want something very good, including the really great product features, then get an ADI-2 Pro right away. It's excellend for your monitoring. But you could also postpone that !

I personally would sell the FF400 asap as long as there is a market for it. If you continue to operate it the likeliness is quite high that the value is getting lower and once it's completely dead, then you do not get any money out of it anymore. Makes no sense IMHO.

Then it's really better to get a UCX, which after 15 years delivers significantly better quality and features in every respect.

There are people who, after connecting their €200 monitors, want to hear a quality improvement when using the ADI-2 Pro, but such spontaneous statements, which certainly did not result from a blind test, should always be treated with caution. In my opinion, you should better have a good room and active monitors with excellent speakers, so that the sound quality can be better transported to you as listener. But you didn't tell anything about your surrounding conditions, not even what you record and how.

Besides this you would benefit from a better / richer feature set of both units, UCX II and ADI-2 Pro.

My recommendation again: buy the UCX II, then sell the FF400, then save money and add the ADI-2 Pro FS and integrate it into the setup. If you should have the feeling that the ADI-2 Pro FS doesn't bring you any further benefit, then send it back and enjoy the UCX II alone.

BR Ramses
UFX+, 12Mic, XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE, RayDAT, X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10Pro22H2, Cub12Pro

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Thank you for all information and ideas so far. I appreciate that.

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

KaiS wrote:

If you hear a quality difference between Fireface 400 and d-box you definitely should go the ADI-2 DAC or ADI-2 Pro route.

For a valid comparison, always make sure both devices under test deliver the EXACT same level.

You need some kind of metering to achieve this, like RME Digicheck, feed from the DUT’s outputs.

To make sure that I haven't fooled myself, I've compared the Fireface 400 DA with the one of the d-box with EXACT levels - the way KaiS has explained. The result remained the same. The stereo field of the d-box seemed to be wider and the overall perception is that it sounds a bit more open and clearer. With reservation that I again used the analog input stage of the d-box for the Fireface to feed my monitors.

13 (edited by KaiS 2022-07-25 16:57:14)

Re: ADI-2 FS - AD conversion similar to ADI-2 Pro?

Purr wrote:

...With reservation that I again used the analog input stage of the d-box for the Fireface to feed my monitors.

But this largely compromised the comparison.

Imagine the special sound of the d-box’s analog path - whatever highend, expensive, million $$$ DAC you plug in there:
It can never win, you always hear the d-box sound only.
The paradox: the better, more neutral the DAC is, the less chance it has.


Get an inexpensive passive A/B switchbox, repeat the test if you want to be sure, e.g this quite universal one (pictures below):
https://smile.amazon.de/Nobsound-Balanc … mp;sr=8-14

If you use two pairs of identical XLR cables and plug them blindly without knowing which pair is which, you can even do a (Level Matched) Blind A/B Comparison.
This eliminates prejudice and expectation bias.

10 run-throughs like this:
• Randomly, blindly (re-)plug the cables from Fireface and d-box.
• Listen, try to identify one or the other device, take notes.
• Identify the devices by the connection and note the result.
• Repeat.

After 10 runs check for statistical relevance:
By what percentage you where able to truly hear the differences?


This is how I do my comparisons if the difference isn’t extremely obvious.
It’s an eye-opener, believe me!

https://m.media-amazon.com/images/I/719yGZOPdgL._AC_SX679_.jpg

https://m.media-amazon.com/images/I/41UAj1uG0xL._AC_.jpg