Audiobus: Use your music apps together.

What is Audiobus?Audiobus is an award-winning music app for iPhone and iPad which lets you use your other music apps together. Chain effects on your favourite synth, run the output of apps or Audio Units into an app like GarageBand or Loopy, or select a different audio interface output for each app. Route MIDI between apps — drive a synth from a MIDI sequencer, or add an arpeggiator to your MIDI keyboard — or sync with your external MIDI gear. And control your entire setup from a MIDI controller.

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Dead iPad Pro AGAIN. That’s 3. F*****k this.

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Comments

  • I still think there's a real possibility that the direct connection, leveraged by gripping the box when unplugging could cause a short. Any small rotational force is going to be magnified much more than it would be when gripping a cable. Maybe this possibility has been eliminated by trying an extender cable or other hub, but if it has I missed it being mentioned.

  • edited May 2021

    That Texas Instruments article mentions the TPD6S300A chip which provides overvoltage and IEC protection for USB-C ports. The documentation even points to concern for the 'mechanical twisting and sliding' of the Type-C connector.
    I think someone mentioned that iPads have similar protection. (I know nothing about this stuff )

    But TI also makes a little Evaluation Module for the chip, with male/female USB-C ports, that you can order. I wonder if that would log any data relevant to these zapped iPads?
    or would the iPad have to have the TI chip installed?

  • edited May 2021

    @AudioGus dont tell me you’ve joined the club! 😱

    @krassmann said:
    If the twisted USB jack problem is like described in this link to TI in one of the posts here, then there is nothing what Apple could do. If the PD current hits a data lane then it’s game over. Then it’s propably a design flaw of the USB-C connector because they wanted to put too many features into this thing. I remember that I read that they designed the USB-C connector type so flat because it should be the one connector to rule them all: from 15 inch workstation laptops to ultra thin mobile phones but you still want to pack everything inside, including lanes that deliver 100W electrical power to a laptop then this is probably the price you pay.

    Update: I meant this link, it depicts the probable reason quite well. credits to @NeonSilicon
    https://e2e.ti.com/blogs_/b/powerhouse/posts/the-problem-with-short-to-vbus-protection-integrated-into-your-usb-type-c-usb-power-delivery-controller

    Update 2: Reading the article again changed my mind and and now I think Apple could actually do something to protect the iPad:

    These failures are easily avoidable by adding an external protection device such as the TPD6S300A. The TPD6S300A’s ability to clamp the voltage quickly and efficiently helps enable a robust and reliable solution for designers.

    Very interesting @krassmann
    And this part here…

    the USB PD controller runs the risk of having the configuration or flash corrupted during this high rate of voltage change (dv/dt) event. It could leave the system in a nondeterministic state with unknown general-purpose input/output values or even cause the microcontroller to lock up. Even worse, if the USB PD controller doesn’t have properly designed internal clamps to absorb the energy, the device itself could be damaged.

    “Nondeterministic state” is exactly what my feeling is. The hiccup-food-air pipe thing. That’s exactly what it felt like. It might very well tie up with what @wim and @tja say, either twisting or a screwed up usb c connector. The hub is causing “confusion” on the iPad, causing it to sort of freeze leaving the door open, so when current comes in it just floods the wrong lane (probably the data path).
    If this is the case, to me it’s the opposite of dismissive on the iPad design and build. You just can’t let an angled or slanted external connection fry a 1000$ device. I don’t know if iPads have that protection or not (@BitterGums) but I’ve obviously bypassed it rather easily.
    This is precisely my biggest fear, that Apple will blame the external whatever for the failure and not replace the iPad. Even more when they didn’t ask for the actual hub or even the exact model.

    PS: sorry for the very lame technical (or lack thereof) talk from my side. I see many of are versed in all these chips and specs. Really appreciate your input.

  • @BitterGums said:
    That Texas Instruments article mentions the TPD6S300A chip which provides overvoltage and IEC protection for USB-C ports. The documentation even points to concern for the 'mechanical twisting and sliding' of the Type-C connector.
    I think someone mentioned that iPads have similar protection. (I know nothing about this stuff )

    But TI also makes a little Evaluation Module for the chip, with male/female USB-C ports, that you can order. I wonder if that would log any data relevant to these zapped iPads?
    or would the iPad have to have the TI chip installed?

    This is the IC that the iPad Pro does have installed. TI's eval boards are usually pricey, ~$200 US range. I don't see this board in stock at Mouser. The IC itself appears to not have any data connections, so I doubt that they are designed to get any data out of. I'm guessing that board is for use in stress testing applications. There are several other IC's involved in the power delivery and USB-C protection on the iPad Pro. This was just the one that I saw that looked like it would be involved with protecting against this sort of failure the most. The doc from TI gives some of the limitations of this IC as does the spec sheet for the part. My suspicion is that either the voltage that hit the iPad was too high or held for too long for the chip to work.

    Whatever is happening, I do think that it is most likely that twisting of the USB-C plug is involved and the larger body of the hub makes it more likely. Since it doesn't seem to happen often to devices, it could be that it is a combination of things like the twisting combined with a faulty voltage boost IC in the doc or power bank that is delivering too much power when the twist happens.

    Another possibility is that it is a twist that happens at the same time as an ESD hit and this is beyond the level of what the IC can protect the data lines at. Dry climate, carpets. etc. could be involved.

  • @NeonSilicon said:
    Whatever is happening, I do think that it is most likely that twisting of the USB-C plug is involved and the larger body of the hub makes it more likely. Since it doesn't seem to happen often to devices, it could be that it is a combination of things like the twisting combined with a faulty voltage boost IC in the doc or power bank that is delivering too much power when the twist happens.

    I think I mentioned it before, but I’m pretty sure the actual “blackout” happened after I unplugged the hub and plugged the powerbank. So just the powerbank, a brand new Anker with PD, at that point. That’s why the “nondeterministic state” thing resonated. It’s obviously hard to remember the exact sequence but I’m inclined to say that there was no usb-c twisting at that precise moment, it was prior. Does it make sense?

  • edited May 2021

    @tahiche said:

    @NeonSilicon said:
    Whatever is happening, I do think that it is most likely that twisting of the USB-C plug is involved and the larger body of the hub makes it more likely. Since it doesn't seem to happen often to devices, it could be that it is a combination of things like the twisting combined with a faulty voltage boost IC in the doc or power bank that is delivering too much power when the twist happens.

    I think I mentioned it before, but I’m pretty sure the actual “blackout” happened after I unplugged the hub and plugged the powerbank. So just the powerbank, a brand new Anker with PD, at that point. That’s why the “nondeterministic state” thing resonated. It’s obviously hard to remember the exact sequence but I’m inclined to say that there was no usb-c twisting at that precise moment, it was prior. Does it make sense?

    I understand what you are saying, yeah. But how it all goes together I don't know. It could be that unplugging the hub caused some sort of damage that when you plugged the powerbank in directly triggered the problem. If you could measure the voltages off of the power bank and the hub it might give you some info. That wouldn't be easy on a USB-C jack. It would probably need a cable that had been cut so you could fan out the wires. That's where I'd start trying to diagnose the situation. Unless you know that your house is prone to static build up. If that's the case, I'd suspect static first.

    Also, a regular USB-C plug will twist too. It's just that it seems like the body of the hub might cause more torque when being attached/dettached and so might be more likely to cause the pins to cross. It could be that certain cables and plugs are more likely to cause problems too. I had one Thunderbolt cable I had to toss because it kept causing dropouts. When it happened, I assumed it didn't fit the jack tight enough. After reading the TI doc, I'm now wondering if maybe they pins were too close together and slight vibrations caused the data pins to ground out.

    Edited: It's also possible that you've been incredibly unlucky and you got three bad iPads in a row. Statistical clustering does happen and it could be that you just happened to get three iPads that had bad parts from a certain bad batch or something. It's unlikely but you never know. I'd still be looking for something in the power chain though.

  • edited May 2021

    Well, it seems like you’re not going to plug a hub directly into an iPad again, or am I misreading? To my uneducated mind it would seem the best bet is to change everything. New power pack, new hub, new cables, new iPad. What could go wrong?

    I’m still hoping you’ll get another replacement. At least that would make this discussion more theoretical and less painful. Good luck and iPad on, Garth!

  • edited May 2021

    @NeonSilicon Yeah that seems to be the case. This Eval Module has the IC in it ..and it's designed to short CC or SBU lines to a high voltage. Like you said, basically a bunch of stress tests that simulate faulty peripherals, electroStatic charges, electrical fast transients and surges. ..reproducing damage caused to the pins in the connecter.
    And i saw that too, TI has Mouser as a distributor and the boards are out of stock, but they are available direct from TI for $49.

    Also, from all the info on TI's site, the problems with USB-C ports are not at all uncommon, especially in this capacity.

  • You just can’t let an angled or slanted external connection fry a 1000$ device...

    @tahiche industry can. Been through this with Firewire ages ago... declared (and designed) to be hot-pluggable.
    In real world use it didn’t need any force to twist the connector into a short of 12V supply power to the data lines. It took a while but eventually warnings appeared to never connect or disconncect with power on.

  • So I got an email from Apple. Seems like a replacement iPad is on the way. I do hope (probably in vain) that they have actually examined it and actually give me some useful info. Probably not.
    I’m gonna get the bloody Apple dongle with no headphones. Probably a little soundcard, I’ll ask you helpful lot. In the meantime, I want to share this beautiful homage, feel very honored. 😂🤣

    @AlmostAnonymous said:
    ~~~~

  • 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  • @tahiche said:
    So I got an email from Apple. Seems like a replacement iPad is on the way. I do hope (probably in vain) that they have actually examined it and actually give me some useful info. Probably not.
    I’m gonna get the bloody Apple dongle with no headphones. Probably a little soundcard, I’ll ask you helpful lot. In the meantime, I want to share this beautiful homage, feel very honored. 😂🤣

    @AlmostAnonymous said:
    ~~~~

    Like an upgraded model? Or the exact same model but new in box? Or just another apple are replacement?

    Yeah….I couldn’t resist. :p

    <3

  • Now the devil in me is breaking free…. Guys, we now know what to do to have our iPad replaced. >:)

  • It hasn’t been replaced yet, I won’t sing victory till it’s with me.

    @krassmann said:
    Now the devil in me is breaking free…. Guys, we now know what to do to have our iPad replaced. >:)

    No, you don’t know!. That’s the problem. I wish I knew. Im sure they’re not gonna tell me what broke, if they mentioned a chip or part I’d research some and maybe resch some sort of conclusion.
    They’re replacing it because it was only a couple of months old (since last breakdown), so not a lot to gain. Luckily I do have iCloud so there should be a backup.

    @AlmostAnonymous they replace it with the same model. I’d much rather have a different one, for obvious reasons I don’t trust this particular model. Last time I asked for an Air instead of my Pro, I’d prefer an air, even if o loose money, or pay the difference for the new model. But no, you get the same one.

  • Hi!
    I’m looking at options now that I’m gonna ditch the Satechi for very obvious frying reasons.
    Having no headphone output sucks, but I have the Sharkoon that @krassmann recommended and works well, also it hasn’t fried his iPad so that’s a good pointer. The Sharkoon will do it’s job for mixing or listening.
    The problem comes when I want to use my new Launchkey, or any other midi/usb device with the Apple usb-c hub. That means I’ll need an audio interface AND the Launchkey, that’s 2 usb devices.
    1) If I plug a usb-a hub into the Apple usb-c dongle port. Will it power multiple devices? Will it power the Launchkey and an audio interface?

    2) A great solution would be an audio interface with integrated hub, I can only find this one by m-audio https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/AIRxHub--m-audio-airxhub-usb-audio-interface-with-built-in-hub. Looks good and useful but no inputs. I wonder if you can plug an audio interface into it if you need inpus, but doesn’t look like it. Any other similar devices besides the iconnect?. Audio interface with integrated hub.

    I already have a Zedi10 audio interface so I’m looking for something cheap and that can be powered with the usb-c port.

  • @tahiche said:
    Any other similar devices besides the iconnect?. Audio interface with integrated hub.

    https://www.arturia.com/products/audio/audiofuse/overview
    But I don’t believe anything from Arturia should cost more than 100$.

  • yeah the Arturia Audiofuse is super cool , has a built in hub. but it's pricey

    1) Yes if you plug a USB hub into the Apple usb-c dongle it will power multiple devices including an interface and the Launchkey. But the hub will have to be powered. Not sure how it would work with a usb-c hub..think it would still have to be powered b/c your interface needs power.

    2) You should be able to plug the Launchkey mini into the usb hub of the M-Audio AIR Hub Interface . Plus, it's got a headphone jack, so you'd be back in business.

  • @AlmostAnonymous said:

    @tahiche said:
    Any other similar devices besides the iconnect?. Audio interface with integrated hub.

    https://www.arturia.com/products/audio/audiofuse/overview
    But I don’t believe anything from Arturia should cost more than 100$.

    What have they done again? You're getting harsher on them - didn't you say 200$ last time around? In any case, I do wish Arturia priced their products based on your beliefs. :)

  • edited May 2021

    @tahiche I think it is best to separate the power supply of the USB gear from the iPad power supply. This can be achieved by using an active USB hub - active means that it is powered and delivers that power to the connected devices. Usually these active hubs provide more power than the passive hubs as with the latter the devices have to share the power supply that comes from the host. It is also unknown (at least to me) how much power is delivered to USB port by the Apple dongle. So to be on the safe side it's best if the USB hub has its own power supply.

    I made a diagram of my setup that better reflect the actual electrical and data circuits: red means power and black is data. This diagram depicts my actual setups and I can confirm they are working without problems.

    Moreover I believe that is is more safe for the iPad as it only takes the power and the data connection from one source. When I plug in and out USB devices they do not interfere with the iPad power circuit. In the hub's manual it is written that it has a protection circuitry that prevents the hub's current from being delivered to the host - in this case the Apple dongle.

    Regarding the iConnect Audio device I can say that it is difficult to use it in a power bank powered setup. It seems to draw a lot of power - without a USB QC power source you are doomed - and very often everything else went off when I connected it to the hub. That's why I bought the Behringer UM2. When I don't need an audio input I also use the Sharkoon DAC for the advanced setup but with an adapter.

  • I'm really happy with my current setup with iconnectivity ICA4+ in the studio with loads of extra gear
    and my other options when more mobile are Zoom U44 + usb hub + Usb3 camera adapter and I also have a soundblaster play 3 for a very mobile little interface which works well.

  • @ervin said:

    @AlmostAnonymous said:

    @tahiche said:
    Any other similar devices besides the iconnect?. Audio interface with integrated hub.

    https://www.arturia.com/products/audio/audiofuse/overview
    But I don’t believe anything from Arturia should cost more than 100$.

    What have they done again? You're getting harsher on them - didn't you say 200$ last time around? In any case, I do wish Arturia priced their products based on your beliefs. :)

    I meant to say 50$. ;)

  • @krassmann said:
    @tahiche I think it is best to separate the power supply of the USB gear from the iPad power supply. This can be achieved by using an active USB hub - active means that it is powered and delivers that power to the connected devices. Usually these active hubs provide more power than the passive hubs as with the latter the devices have to share the power supply that comes from the host. It is also unknown (at least to me) how much power is delivered to USB port by the Apple dongle. So to be on the safe side it's best if the USB hub has its own power supply.

    I made a diagram of my setup that better reflect the actual electrical and data circuits: red means power and black is data. This diagram depicts my actual setups and I can confirm they are working without problems.

    Moreover I believe that is is more safe for the iPad as it only takes the power and the data connection from one source. When I plug in and out USB devices they do not interfere with the iPad power circuit. In the hub's manual it is written that it has a protection circuitry that prevents the hub's current from being delivered to the host - in this case the Apple dongle.

    Regarding the iConnect Audio device I can say that it is difficult to use it in a power bank powered setup. It seems to draw a lot of power - without a USB QC power source you are doomed - and very often everything else went off when I connected it to the hub. That's why I bought the Behringer UM2. When I don't need an audio input I also use the Sharkoon DAC for the advanced setup but with an adapter.

    Wow. This wins the detailed answer of the century award 🥇 Really appreciate it!.
    So it seems like a powered hub is a must, right?. That’s the part I hate the most.
    I have an old Zoom h4 that works as an audio interface, so I can use that in the meantime. I’m thinking of getting a Behringer umc404hd or 204hd. Since I can’t be “as mobile” at least the 4 outputs might give me some joy. Like loopback to do “poor man’s bounce in place” in Zenbeats and also be able to record back and forth AUM and Zenbeats, since Zenbeats doesn’t support Audiobus or IAA.

  • @tahiche said:

    @tja said:
    If that always happened with the same hub, I would get another prime model - just to be sure

    They explicitly told me it couldn’t be the hub at Apple. The Satechi is not cheap, it’s one of the best known.
    Ok, so Just in case I’ll get a prime one, the “primest”. I’ll get Apple’s official hub. Oh wait, it’s got no headphones jack!. What now?. How do I use my iPad to make music, which is the sole reason I want it for?. And that’s “just in case”...
    Excuse my tone @tja , obviously not directed at you. I’m very grateful for your comment!.
    A usb hub should not kill a device. Never. Unless there’s some bullshit “negotiation” going on on whatever chip is there that does ... I don’t know.
    Feels like breaking a guitar string and blaming the delay pedal.
    I just want an answer. This happened because of this... I’ll do whatever they say, I’ll buy whatever they say. That was my position last time, that’s what I told them. I’ll buy a 200€ dongle if I have to, it’d be amazing if I could actually listen to stuff and charge it at the same time. One can only dream...

    Tell me why I had the same problem but with a new iPad Air 4 this would be my first replacement. Since then I haven’t connected anythig to the iPad, I’ve only charged it to be sure I don’t have the same issues again.

  • @tahiche : the Zoom H4 works fine as an audio interface as long as you aren't recording via its audio input and also wanting to monitor the signal after it has entered the iPad (for example, if you are recording a guitar and putting it through an amp sim) as the input signal is always direct monitored -- which is a bummer for me or it would be main interface for my iPad.

  • Yes! 🙌
    I love that it’s the “Lite” one 😂🤣

  • @espiegel123 said:
    @tahiche : the Zoom H4 works fine as an audio interface as long as you aren't recording via its audio input and also wanting to monitor the signal after it has entered the iPad (for example, if you are recording a guitar and putting it through an amp sim) as the input signal is always direct monitored -- which is a bummer for me or it would be main interface for my iPad.

    Also the screen sucks, hard to read if the lights are off. But it does sound good, I love the mic.
    I think I record with both the monitor of the H4 and the daw monitor which I just bump to absurd levels, not subtle.

  • @shodd71 said:
    Tell me why I had the same problem but with a new iPad Air 4 this would be my first replacement. Since then I haven’t connected anythig to the iPad, I’ve only charged it to be sure I don’t have the same issues again.

    Really?. That sucks!. So are you using for music?.
    Feel bad for you but at the same time it’s sort of comforting that I’m not the only one…

  • @tahiche said:

    @shodd71 said:
    Tell me why I had the same problem but with a new iPad Air 4 this would be my first replacement. Since then I haven’t connected anythig to the iPad, I’ve only charged it to be sure I don’t have the same issues again.

    Really?. That sucks!. So are you using for music?.
    Feel bad for you but at the same time it’s sort of comforting that I’m not the only one…

    Yep only for music, and I completely understand.

  • Got a replacement iPad!.
    Also got the stupid Apple dongle thingy. The worsest 80€ purchase ever, now I have an hdmi port and no headphones.
    Can you believe the Berhringer 204hd is exactly the same price as the silly dongle thingy?.

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