Posts by cwichura

    Sorry, I haven't been on the forums in a while, so missed this post. I think this would be good information to include. You can quote or re-write as you feel necessary to make things clear for your target audience. Or google around for some other sources that have a better write-up of this issue than I provided.

    cwichura - thank you. this is one of best posts on this topic so far. if you don't mind i would like to quote a portion in the setup guide.

    As a USB 1.x device, there is not enough bandwidth to transmit multiple channels of >48k audio back to the host over USB. If you want to make use of the higher frequency rates, you must use the analog outs on the Virus and route them into another audio interface capable of capturing higher sample rates.

    USB 2.0 hubs have a dirty little secret. Most of them use a chipset based on a single translation design, as these chipsets are cheaper. The translation handler affects how the USB hub deals with USB 1.x devices that are connected to it. And since the Virus is a USB 1.1 device, this is important.


    With a single translation based chipset, all USB 1.x devices on the hub share a single translation channel. Thus, if you also have things like a keyboard or mouse connected to the hub (which are almost always still USB 1.x devices as well), they will share a single 12mbit USB 1.x channel back to the host machine with your Virus. Many music controllers (e.g., Akai MPD series, etc.) are also USB 1.x devices. Sharing a single USB 1.x channel can result in bandwidth issues, sync issues, etc. You want to avoid single translation chipsets.


    Multi translation chipset designs give each USB 1.x device its own 1.x<->2 translation channel. Thus, each device gets its own dedicated 12mbit USB 1.x channel to play with. You no longer have to worry about conflict between devices, and USB behavior for things that are timing and/or bandwidth sensitive will be MUCH more stable.


    But as I said, most USB 2 hubs use a single transaction chipset to save on cost. And nobody publishes this in their tech specs (even the folks making hubs based on a multi transaction chipset it seems). Without calling and consulting with tech support, you usually have no way to know. That said, one hub that is known to have a multi transaction chipset and which I personally own 4 or 5 of and have had no issues with (not used with the Virus, but with other audio interfaces) is the Belkin F5U237v1 7-port USB2 hub. I'm not sure if this is the same as the Apple hub you mentioned or not (did not follow your link, sorry). You mention power problems, which I've never had, as I always use the included power supply to drive the hub.

    we do not disclose sales figures, sorry. the "dark star" is not limited in quantity as for instance the desktop whiteout limited was. the "dark star" will be discontinued somewhen in the future though.


    best, marc

    I wasn't looking for actual sales numbers. I was under the impression the DarkStar was a limited production run with a set number made like the other WhiteOut editions were. Hence the confusion. Sorry about that.

    Just checking there's no way of having a virus on more than one instrument channel no?


    Seems pretty restricting actually, I want to be able to eq/ put vsts on each part in the virus, without having to bounce anything down as audio first.

    You have 3 USB channels and 3 analog channels to play with. VC routes everything through USB1 by default. However, you can add additional MIDI channels in your DAW and route them to the appropriate part in VC. And then add additional audio channels and have them route their input from VC or your audio interface (in the case of using the analog outputs on the Virus). Then it is simply a matter of selecting the appropriate output in VC for each part.


    How all this is done will vary depending on which DAW you are using, so it's best to go through the setup guide that Access provides.

    The video linked shows how to set up separate audio tracks to consume from the three USB channels provided by the Virus. To also get three analog at the same time, you'll need a multi-channel audio interface for Ableton. Route the analog outputs from the Virus into the audio interface and configure additional audio channels appropriately in Ableton to consume these audio feeds. Then, in Virus Control, select the audio outputs as the destination similar to how the video shows selecting the USB outputs as the destination.


    Ableton also lets you collapse the MIDI and Audio into a single channel if you'd rather. To do so, create a MIDI channel in Ableton. Drop an "External Instrument" Ableton device onto this channel. Configure the External Instrument to send MIDI to VC on the appropriate part number (1-16). Then configure the audio input of the External Instrument to consume the desired audio source (be it from the VC plugin for USB, or from your audio interface for the analogs). This helps reduce channel clutter in Ableton. But only makes logical sense if you are doing a 1:1 mapping of part to audio channel.

    As you surmised, to get full control of your Virus from your Mac, you need a DAW or other host that can load plugins. Fortunately, GarageBand does support instrument plugins.


    Create a new software instrument track in your GarageBand project. This should display the Track Info window on the side to select the instrument. By default, it shows you sampled instruments included with GarageBand. However, at the bottom of the window is a triangle to expand down "Details". After expanding the Details, you should see a selection for "Instrument Generator". From there, you should see the Virus listed in the bottom section of the pick list in the category labeled "Audio Unit Modules". Clicking on the little "pencil" button to the right after selecting the Virus should bring up the plugin's control window where you can select patches and tweak them.


    GarageBand is still restrictive, however. You will only be able to have one part in your project that uses the Virus. If you want to use multiple parts, you will really need to look into purchasing a more professional DAW package that supports MIDI routing.


    (Disclaimer: I don't personally use GarageBand, so am basing this on the old GarageBand '08 that came with my laptop. Things may be different in newer versions of it.)