Focusrite Scarlett 18i6
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Focusrite Scarlett 18i6

Scarlett 18i6, USB audio interface from Focusrite in the Scarlett series.

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Comments about the news item: Focusrite Scarlett 18i6

 
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Toophle

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11 Posted on 08/02/2011 at 05:14:54Direct link to this post
I second the problems about the windows drivers for the 18i6. I'm no expert but no beginner either, and in 15 years of fiddling with PC hardware setups, I've NEVER encountered such a difficult install! I've been having so much trouble with this, in case it can help anyone else, here's my experiences on installing the Scarlett 18i6 on a PC running Windows XP SP2/SP3.


Problem 1: getting it up and running at all (solved)
I've been lucky and avoided the BSOD, but I've had huge troubles getting it all running with reasonable stability. While it was working fine on my mac from the start, my most frequent result in windows XP was that the "connected" LED did not light up, and there was no sign of life other than the two LED's on either side of the "connected" one.

It turns out the sequence of the install needs to be right, but not all the details are in the manual. Here's my working procedure:
- The starting point is a "clean" machine: no Scarlett drivers are installed, and windows has not been allowed to attempt detecting the hardware and installing the 18i6 automatically: keep the 18i6 disconnected until later!
- Install the "resources" file from the CD.
- When the installer prompts you to, connect the 18i6, but be prepared to click "ok" in the installer immediately - before windows detects the hardware and starts a parallell automatic install process.
- Install the plug-in suite if you want.
- Restart the PC. The card should now be connected, and basic drivers should be working - meaning you can use it as a standard windows audio device, but no working ASIO and no mixer/router.
- For the next steps, it's important to disconnect the 18i6 again.
- Download and install the MixControl 1.0.exe from the focusrite website.
- When this installer prompts you to uninstall the older driver, do that. Yes/next/ok or whatever.
- After finishing the install, DO NOT connect the 18i6! RESTART THE PC FIRST!
- After the restart, connect the 18i6 and allow windows to detect the card and go through the rest of the install process.
- Restart again. Viola, everything should work.


I should also tell you that for a long time, I could only get a message reading "This device cannot start (code 10)" when windows tried to detect the hardware. As soon as this message appeared, I couldn't get rid of it - even by doing the right sequence above: this error message persisted through every uninstall and attempt at reinstalling it, it even kept malfunctioning after I did a "repair windows" with the original windows CD! The procedure above only works if this error hasn't already appeared. If it has, keep reading.

Good news: it's not a hardware problem. I think it happens when windows detects new hardware, if the drivers are not installed and running when that detection happens, the 18i6 is assigned to a generic driver which doesn't work. This coupling, between a specific USB device and what driver it uses, is saved in the windows registry for windows to remember when the same device is connected later. And so, when the correct drivers ARE installed (or uninstalled, and reinstalled), the old coupling is not changed, the bad "driver" overrides it, and the error persists.

It can be fixed manually (that's the bad news, for those who don't like opening the hood in windows). After all the drivers and Focusrite software has been uninstalled, use the registry editor (regedit) and find and delete all the keys containing the string "Scarlett" in or below the path [ HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Enum ]. But these keys are write protected, so you need to enter the permissions submenu and take ownership of them before you can delete them. Restart, do a fresh driver install, good luck!


Problem 2: driver stability (not solved)
There are all sorts of glitches happening now. The driver always refuses to change the sampling frequency when the DAW asks it to. Sometimes the ASIO driver disappears when I adjust the buffer size. Sometimes the PC freezes at random times. Please, Focusrite, save us!


Problem 3: pops and dropouts in the audio, both in recording and playback (solved)
This could not be solved on my system by increasing the buffer size. Some research gave an answer that suggests this is a problem with all USB 2.0 audio gear: it happens because windows XP uses a system called ACPI to automatically handle the hardware resources that your USB devices need. Specifically, ACPI will assign the same, shared IRQ across several connected USB devices, and it may not always be able to keep up with the audio stream. In my case, I was using an external hard drive and a USB mouse/keyboard combo, and that was enough to give dropout pops with regular intervals - exactly 1 second in between. Solution: some online forums give directions on how to move the competing USB devices away from the IRQ of the 18i6, and next, how to give that IRQ high priority. I didn't bother, it turned out to be enough to just disconnect my USB hard drive when I'm recording.


If anyone from Focusrite is reading this: the Scarlett 18i6 is an otherwise great piece of equipment, and at a killer price! But these are pretty serious issues, you need to address it fast!

JoeFocusrite

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12 Posted on 08/26/2011 at 04:49:58Direct link to this post
Hi there,

I thought I'd offer some advice as this thread was drawn to my attention. Many of these issues have been addressed already but I thought it would be good to give the official line.

Installation
The disk comes with a basic driver that works with the Scarlett. This will be seen in your DAW as 'Scarlett USB'. However, if possible, you should avoid installing this and only install Scarlett MixControl from our downloads page:
http://www.focusrite.com/downloads/scarlett_8i6/

This will be presented in your DAW as 'Focusrite USB 2.0 Audio' and this is what you should choose.

If you previously installed the disk version, this should be removed by the new installer but it's best to manually remove it first to make sure that it's been deleted. To do this:
- Plug in your Scarlett
- Locate the Scarlett in your device manager under 'Sound, video and game controllers' and uninstall it. You should choose the option to delete the driver
- Run any uninstallers found under 'Focusrite' in the programs section of the Start Menu.
- Remove the Scarlett from your computer
- Restart the computer
- Install Scarlett MixControl
- Plug in your Scarlett

Blue screens when using MIDI cable
We have a driver that resolves this issue that we are looking to release to our beta website shortly (http://beta.focusrite.com/). If you are having this issue and would like this fixed this instant, please get in contact with us via the contact form on our answerbase and we'll send you the drivers.

Scarlett losing connection with Scarlett MixControl
We're aware of an issue where the Scarlett is losing connection with Scarlett MixControl when streaming audio from a USB device on the same bus. We're looking at getting this fixed in an upcoming driver/firmware update.

Any other performance issues
If you're having specific performance issues on your system please don't hesitate to get in contact with us via the contact form on our answerbase and detail as much as you can about your system. We will be happy to help out and get you up and running on your system.

Joe
Focusrite Tech Support

mindchaosx

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13 Posted on 02/02/2012 at 16:29:26Direct link to this post
As much as I love this product (I had the 8i6 model), I've had to return it due to headphone input issues. It would work great for about 10 minutes and then I would lose sound on one side and have to wiggle the wire to get sound to come through. I checked with the sales rep where I bought it and it was indeed an issue with the audio interface, so he gave me another one and .... same issue, 10 minutes into playing. The headphone input seemed loose on both of them. I have to bring it back and I'm most likely switching to another brand, this is annoying.

Is this a common issue?

[ Post last edited on 02/02/2012 at 16:31:43 ]

Ben W Focusrite

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14 Posted on 02/07/2012 at 08:16:58Direct link to this post
Hi guys,

We now have a full release version of Scarlett MixControl, containing the latest Focusrite USB 2.0 driver. It fixes many problems previously mentioned.

http://www.focusrite.com/downloads/

If you have any issues at all with the new driver, please get in touch with us via the Focusrite contact form below and we will be happy to assist.

http://www.focusrite.com/answerbase/en/contact.php

Best Regards,

Ben Ware - Focusrite/Novation Technical Support

notquiteright

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15 Posted on 02/28/2012 at 01:28:50Direct link to this post
I didn't have any problem setting it up...I just followed the usual directions when installing anything like this. I'm on Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit. That may have made a difference. I did notice there wasn't an immediate selection for Focusrite when I opened a Cubase 6 session but that was easily fixed by changing the VST settings.
I do have a problem with it though. There's a small digital buzz or click that happens from time to time. I haven't looked to see if it's on the in's or out's but I will open up a session soon and just see if it records to track.
Basically, that's the only problem. I was able to install the plug-ins when I opened the disk and didn't just auto-run, and I was able to place the plug-ins in the appropriate places when I opened my VST folder.
My only question is...has anyone had an issue with noise? I would like to think that because it's a brand new out-of-the-box product, it's something simple like the fact that I'm not using the USB cable it came with or something.
Any feedback would be appreciated!
Thanks!! :)

Daniel_SRK

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16 Posted on 01/07/2013 at 16:29:36Direct link to this post
I read comments on this page and would like to ask opinions about a problem I have with my 18i6. In September of 2011 I bought in Miami a 18i6, have been recording tracks with this until about 2 weeks ago. Suddenly stopped connecting with scarlett MixControl (hardware not conected), I installed and uninstalled the drivers and updated to the latest version available on Focusrite. not get work until I changed cable and I tried on another PC, and it's not working, what is strange is that in my XP device appears in the list of audio devices "scarlett 18i6 usb" and the USB root when I connect the first time, because if I unplug it and plug it back as Windows XP tells me unknown device.
Can someone help me solve this problem? thank you very much
sorry my poor english


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digviano

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17 Posted on 01/29/2013 at 13:55:17Direct link to this post
Quote from Daniel_SRK:
I read comments on this page and would like to ask opinions about a problem I have with my 18i6. In September of 2011 I bought in Miami a 18i6, have been recording tracks with this until about 2 weeks ago. Suddenly stopped connecting with scarlett MixControl (hardware not conected), I installed and uninstalled the drivers and updated to the latest version available on Focusrite. not get work until I changed cable and I tried on another PC, and it's not working, what is strange is that in my XP device appears in the list of audio devices "scarlett 18i6 usb" and the USB root when I connect the first time, because if I unplug it and plug it back as Windows XP tells me unknown device.
Can someone help me solve this problem? thank you very much
sorry my poor english


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I have the same problem! No USB lights I. E. the interface is not recognized! Have you solved this issue?

Daniel_SRK

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18 Posted on 01/29/2013 at 17:06:48Direct link to this post
Hello, in my case the USB led tourns on but ScarlettMixControl shows No Hardware, however if I see at Audio device administration I can see the 18i6, still I couldnt solve, now I´m measuring components, voltages and waveforms over the main board.
Good luck

stevedaniel

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19 Posted on 01/15/2018 at 00:14:56Direct link to this post
Hey,
I use Ableton Live. But I want to know which is the best suite or standard?
Can you suggest me, https://img.audiofanzine.com/images/audiofanzine/interface/smileys/icon_facepalm.gifguys?
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