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EASERA Gateway compared to the Presonus Firebox
PostPosted: Mon Oct 02, 2006 8:49 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 19 Apr 2005
Posts: 453
Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA

What are the differences between the EASERA Gateway and the device it is based on, the Presonus Firebox?

    The EASERA Gateway has received several additions to firmware, driver and hardware to make the former recording interface FireBox work for professional measurements. These changes include achieving a stable latency for delay and TDS measurements, a physical loopback on the board to redirect the former SPDIF stream, a corrected set of filters and multiple bugfixes as well as numerous days of testing.

How does the EASERA Gateway relate to EASERA?
  • EASERA remains an open measuring platform. All existing and new DirectSound, Wave and ASIO drivers will be supported also in the future.
  • EASERA Gateway is a recommended hardware for all measurements, including Sweeps, MLS and Dual-Channel measurements
  • EASERA Gateway is required to run TDS measurements with the EASERA TEF/TDS module
  • EASERA Gateway can be used with any other audio software, similarly to the PreSonus FireBox, but without the SPDIF input/output, it is also fully supported by Apple computers

What does this all mean?
    The Gateway loopback allows you to compensate for the latency inherent to the device. It does not correct the analog frequency response of the A/D and D/A as it is on the digital side of the box. (The SPDIF was rerouted and is not SPDIF anymore.)

    Each time the Firebox is powered on or the driver is reset, Windows chooses an arbitrary latency for the device. That means you must always use an external cable and Dual or Multi-ch FFT in order to compensate for it. The Gateway does not have this limitation. This is especially critical for delay and thus TDS measurements.

    Also, using the Gateway, you can additionally compensate for the A/D and D/A analog response by creating a Reference Measurement and using it during the measurement. Now, both time and FR are compensated in the measurement. You can do this also with any other device, including the Firebox, however you must make sure that the latency does not change. That is possible if the driver is never reset and for one measurement session. But it means you must always store a new Reference measurement after turning on the measurement system.

    We have also developed the point of view that most often an external loopback is preferable. For example with some devices providing internal loopback capabilities the impedance seems to change and thus the clip voltage.

    None of that careful attention to what Windows is doing behind your back is required with the Gateway. For the Gateway, the only real difference between Dual FFT and a single channel measurement is the compensation for the analog response (and the use of an additional channel).

    There are also a few more firmware/driver fixes. For example, a fix for the anti-alias filter for 44.1k and 48k that was partially still enabled at the 88.1k and 96k sample rates.
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EASERA Gateway compared to the Presonus Firebox
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