Understanding Qu-Drive and USB Devices
Posted by Nicola Beretta, Last modified by Keith Johnson on 16 May 2017 01:40 PM
UNDERSTANDING QU-DRIVE and USB Devices
Qu-Drive is a facility to record and playback stereo (2-track) and multitrack (18-track) audio.
The recording format is WAV 48kHz 24-bit.
Qu-Drive audio recording and multitrack playback require the USB storage device to support high sustained transfer rates. Not all USB devices will guarantee flawless performance - when a USB device causes a pause that is longer than the buffer time in the mixer, a dropout occurs and data is lost.
Note that the buffer size in Qu-Drive was improved in firmware V1.4, however dropouts can still occur for a number of reasons. Please refer to the following guidelines for sourcing a suitable USB device.
The smallest USB drive size that should be used with Qu-Drive is 2GB.
Maximum USB drive size (FAT32 file system limit) is 2TB.
We recommend you use the USB hard drive for the Qu mixer only. Do not use it for other applications.
Format the hard drive on the Qu mixer before each use. This clears the drive, sets up the Qu directory structure, and formats into FAT32 with a constant cluster size of 32kB.
Additional notes on Qu-Drive
Please refer to the Qu Mixer Getting Started Guide for an overview of Qu-Drive supported file formats, data rate, folder structure and file naming, patching and instructions on multitrack playback and recording.
Note - .wav files imported to the USB drive for multitrack playback via Qu-Drive must be MONO tracks, 48kHz 24bit, and follow the naming and file structure convention detailed in the User Guide. Also note that the Qu mixer expects 18 tracks to be present in the multitrack folder - you can create dummy tracks by duplicating and renaming your files.
The maximum file size on FAT32 is 4 GB. Qu-Drive audio data rate per track is 8.24 MB / minute (144 KB / second). This would allow a maximum recording time of roughly 8 hours. For 18 tracks you would need 72 GB drive capacity for the maximum recording time.
Note - .wav files imported to the USB drive for Stereo playback via Qu-Drive must be INTERLEAVED stereo tracks, and placed into the AHQU/USBPlay folder.
Note - .wav files with a BWF (broadcast) header are only supported on firmware V1.31 or higher.
Stereo Playback + Stereo Record, not supported simultaneously.
Stereo Playback + Multitrack Playback, not supported simultaneously.
Stereo Playback + Multitrack Record, not supported simultaneously.
Stereo Record + Multitrack Playback, not supported simultaneously.
Stereo Record + Multitrack Record, not supported simultaneously.
Multitrack Record + Multitrack Playback, not supported simultaneously.
Qu-Drive Playback (stereo or multitrack) + Multitrack Recording to USB B (streaming to DAW) is supported.
Playback from USB B (streaming from DAW) + Qu-Drive Recording (stereo or multitrack) is supported.
Qu-Drive Recording (stereo or multitrack) + Multitrack Recording to USB B (streaming to DAW) is supported*.
Qu-Drive Playback (stereo or multitrack) + Playback from USB B (streaming from DAW) not supported.
DO’s and DON’TS
Recommended best practices for multitrack recording with Qu-Drive:
Third-party USB devices:
Specifications and performance of USB devices can be changed at any time by the manufacturer, we recommend that you test the device fully before you depend on it in a recording / playback situation. Be aware of possible batch variance in memory chipsets and performance. What appears to be the same device may not actually work.
We recommend purchasing from a retailer who provides a suitable returns policy to allow you to try the device and return if unsuitable.
Please see the following thread in the A&H Digital Community regarding tested 3rd party devices:
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