After consigning my Virus TI Pølar to the cupboard for many years, I recently got it out again. I must say I've missed its sound. It really is a synth with something special about it. Why Access cannot develop it further (even with better connectivity to modern systems) is a shame.
However, there's always the other side... I never managed to get TI to work properly with my setup. I've had better times over the years and worse ones. Right now it is (touch wood) working quite well. I have it attached to a Caldigit TB3 hub and it is on it's own USB 3.1 bus. The thing that I just cannot seem to fix are a few random pops/crackles. These are sporadic and not too bad. The other involves playing arp patterns with delays. Every now and again the arp looses sync, the delay wobbles and obviously resynchronises. Some years ago, Access kindly changed the mainboard in an effort to fix this, but alas the problem still happens. I have tried everything I can think of:
- This is repeatable on a MPB 2017 15", A MacPro 2008 tower and a 2011 iMac,
- The MBP is on 10.14.6 LogicX 10.5.1 (Last version to work on Mojave),
- Tried many USB cables (5 ones I have here) same deal,
- Tried using Virus as the core audio device, and my Fireface UFX, same result,
- Tried outputting a spdif from RME to a CO2 converter and then coax spdif to virus to "help" clocking,
- Use Ableton Live 11, same.
I guess my question is, is it really possible to get perfection here. Does anyone ever get consistent, reliable audio transmission all the time? I mean, if I knew for a fact it was the hardware I would consider coughing up and getting a Darkstar TI2. But I have gone through many many threads here and there still appears that some people get trouble on the newer models. I also know there's many who have understandably given up, and gone hardware only or use MI editor etc. That is an option, but I kinda love having the TI editor/librarian and am happy to keep my laptop running Mojave just for the purpose.
In my unscientific approach, I somewhat doubt that "perfect" operation is possible all the time. Maybe some don't notice some of the clicks, or some sounds don't rely on arps and delays all the time. Maybe I'm wrong here, maybe I truly have a dud and always have. The thing is, it's always seemed to work fine as a hardware synth which leads me to believe it's a clocking issue. Either USB transmission, or a mismatch between Logic sending a clock and the TI receiving it. The TI does behave better when it is receiving playback from the sequencer rather than live input but it still happens. I've considered buying a ridiculously expensive USB cable as some audiophiles swear by them. Others say it's snake oil and makes little to no difference...
Sorry for the long post, I just wanted to get my feelings out and see if anyone else can offer any insight at all. Am I asking for too much here, is the Virus just a flawed diamond that I should give up on, use as hardware and forget the TI, or is it, really, truly possible to fix? Sometimes I just wish I had the money to go out, buy 2 or 3 and just test my theories!
All the best,