RME's Fireface 800 is the world's most
powerful FireWire audio interface ever. Up to 56 channels
record/playback, up to 192 kHz sample rate, and true FireWire
800 sum up to an unsurpassed high-end, high performance and
FireWire audio interface. Since the Fireface first shipped in July
2004, the unit became the reference for FireWire audio - and still is
today! Lots of 'world's first' and 'world's only' features put the
Fireface 800 far ahead of the competition. Read on to find out more!
Fireface 800 combines the latest and also proven technologies of
previous RME products with the fastest FireWire technology. Analog
technology of the ADI-8
converters, microphone technology of QuadMic and OctaMic, TotalMix technology of the Hammerfall
DSP series, years of experience in programming of efficient and
reliable drivers, up to complete support from DIGICheck - only the best of the best, and
even a bit more. The Fireface 800 offers the best worked out instrument
input that could ever be found in an audio interface, a high
power headphone output and signal-to-noise ratios of 119 dBA
- typically RME!
balanced line inputs and outputs with software controlled switching of
the reference levels (-10 dBV, +4 dBu, HiGain), of course realized
discretely in the analog domain, guarantee highest dynamic range and
highest fidelity. Apart from the levels of the microphone pre-amps and
the headphone outputs, all device settings are software controlled.
Equipped with the latest A/D and D/A converter chips, all I/Os operate
up to 192 kHz and reach 119 dBA dynamic range on playback - even the
The front-sided headphone output in
high power technology does not only deliver high volume with
low-impedance headphones, but represents the playback channels 9/10.
Therefore the headphone output can be used directly with ASIO Direct
On the front side, the Fireface 800 has 4 discrete balanced microphone
with class-A stage, separate activation of 48 V phantom power and
separate XLR/TRS inputs, where the latter can also be used as adjustable
Line inputs with a gain range of 50 dB!
Two of the four mic inputs are permanently available as channels 9 and
10, the other two can be used together with or alternatively to the
inputs 7/8 on the back.
The FireFace 800's
Hi-Z instrument input offers an unprecedented fidelity and flexibility
for the use of guitar and bass. A soft-limiter,
which has been tuned especially for musical instruments, efficiently
prevents overloads of the A/D-converter. The limiter does not work
without distortion, it intentionally creates harmonic distortion. Due
to a soft transition and deliberate creation of harmonics, the input
signal is compressed steplessly according to taste, or the limiter can
be used as a distortion with tube sound. A Drive
circuit, which can be activated in addition, delivers broad guitar
distortion. The Speaker Emulation
filter, which can also be switched on separately, takes low- and
high-frequency disturbances away and guarantees an optimal basic sound
even when recording directly into the computer, or when monitoring
through a mixing console. Signals from guitar or bass are not being
alienated in this case, but pre-conditioned for later
processing in the DAW, so that the known amplifier plug-ins can make
the most out of the sound.
optical I/Os allow for a connection and insertion of effects devices,
mixing consoles or external converters. Of course, these 16 channels
are available simultaneously with the analog channels. Using two
additional ADI-8 DS, you'll get 26 analog inputs and outputs,
which remain still 18 at 96 kHz. The coaxial SPDIF I/O works up
to 192 kHz, so that there are still 10 analog in- and outputs at the
highest sample rate, plus two digital ones. SPDIF optical,
alternatively provided via the second ADAT port, also operates up to
192 kHz - another RME-only feature.
All inputs and outputs can be
used at the same time*!. E. g., the instrument input can be used
either instead of the line input on the back, or together
with it. Even the TRS jack and the XLR socket of the microphone inputs
can be used simultaneously. This way, up to 35 signal sources
can be connected to the Fireface 800 and recorded onto 28
Thanks to the DSP-based TotalMix mixer, known from the Hammerfall
DSP series, all inputs and outputs can be freely mixed, distributed and
routed. Up to 14 completely independent stereo submixes
are possible. Each of the mixer's output channels, that is every single
submix channel, can be recorded directly,
without the need of external cable loops. And there's more: TotalMix
can be MIDI remote controlled with any Mackie Control compatible
Thanks to an internal flash memory, all settings including
TotalMix are recalled during boot. After making all desired settings,
the device works stand-alone even without computer as a submixer,
A/D and D/A-converter, headphone mixer, format converter,
instrument or microphone pre-amplifier, monitoring mixer and much more.
The Fireface 800 is equipped with SteadyClock™,
RME's unique sync and clock technology. With this, the device becomes a
sync reference for the whole studio. SteadyClock refreshes clock
signals, removes jitter, and takes permanent care of optimal
conversion quality, thus guarantees a sensational sound quality,
completely independent from the reference clock's quality.
SteadyClock allows the Fireface 800 to control the sample rate freely
on its own. The Settings
dialog includes a direct choice of the video and audio world's
most often used sample rates. Additionally, two faders can
be used to set the sample rate freely and in real-time, within
the range of +/- 4% and +/- 0.4%.
Via an insert slot on the back, a Time Code Option
(TCO) for synchronizing to LTC and video can be added. Thanks to
SteadyClock, the Fireface 800 does not only extract absolute positions,
but also a very clean low-jitter word clock.
Fireface 800 uses RME's own
FireWire techology, heavily optimized for audio purposes. Lowest
overhead, special hardware adaptations and a new low latency buffer
concept enable a performance and compatibility which has been thought
of as impossible until now - at latencies of only one millisecond.
The Fireface 800 has a second port for hub functionality, bi-lingual
mode for full FireWire 400 compatibility, and an additional FireWire
400 port. Several Fireface 800 can be used in parallel and at the
same time on one FireWire port without any problem.
|Input AD: 8 x 1/4" TRS, 4 x XLR Mic, 1/4" TRS
Line, all servo-balanced. 1 x 1/4" TS unbalanced
|Output DA: 8 x 1/4" TRS, servo-balanced,
DC-coupled signal path. 1 x 1/4" TRS unbalanced
|Input Digital: 2 x ADAT optical or SPDIF
optical, SPDIF coaxial (AES/EBU compatible)
|Output Digital: 2 x ADAT optical or SPDIF
optical, SPDIF coaxial (AES/EBU compatible)
|MIDI: 1 x MIDI I/O via 5-pin DIN jacks, for 16
channels low jitter hi-speed MIDI
|Dynamic range AD: 109 dB RMS unweighted, 112 dBA
|THD AD: < -110 dB (< 0.00032 %)
|THD+N AD: < -104 dB (< 0.00063 %)
|Crosstalk AD: > 110 dB
|Dynamic range DA: 116 dB RMS unweighted, 119 dBA
|THD DA: < -103 dB (< 0.0007 %)
|THD+N DA: < -100 dB (< 0.001 %)
|Crosstalk DA: > 110 dB
|Input/Output level for 0 dBFS @ Hi Gain: +19 dBu
|Input/Output level for 0 dBFS @ +4 dBu: +13 dBu
|Input/Output level for 0 dBFS @ -10 dBV: +2 dBV
|Sample rate internally: 32, 44.1, 48, 64, 88.2
kHz, 96 kHz, 128, 176.4, 192 kHz
|Sample rate externally: 28 kHz - 200 kHz
|Frequency response AD/DA, -0.1 dB: 5 Hz - 21,5
kHz (sf 48 kHz)
|Frequency response AD/DA, -0.5 dB: < 5 Hz -
43.5 kHz (sf 96 kHz)
|Frequency response AD/DA, -1 dB: < 5 Hz - 70
kHz (sf 192 kHz)
more about this fascinating unit in the Fireface
800 manual !
Windows 2000 SP4 or Windows XP:
Full ASIO multi-client operation of WDM, MME, GSIF 2.0 and ASIO 2.0.
WDM (DirectSound) with stereo and multi-channel support. Full
hot-plugging. Up to 3 units operational.
Mac OS X (10.3. or up): Core Audio, Core MIDI. Since 10.4
(Tiger) up to 3 units operational.