HELP: Qu-16 Distorting on Playback via OS X

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This topic contains 10 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of volounteer volounteer 2 years, 3 months ago.

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    Profile photo of Victor Kennedy
    Victor Kennedy

    Hello, I’d really appreciate any suggestions regarding an audio distortion issue.

    I’m setting up my new Qu-16 for studio use with ProTools etc. Initially just trying to get the basic ‘stereo/mix/playback’ (into ST-1) audio signals working so I can then delve into all the functions of the unit.

    Audio is playing back but there’s a problem with audio distortion when I playback from my iMac (OSX 10.11.3).
    When playing audio from both YouTube (tutorials) and Pro Tools, the signal is clean for a short while (seconds/minutes/bars) but then all of a sudden it starts distorting and crackling.

    I have the session in ProTools converted to 48k (originally 44.1k) so this shouldn’t be the issue from what I understand, and as the distortion also happens when playing from YouTube it’s a mystery.

    On suggestion from an audio engineer mate, I reset all audio outputs on iMac to Aggregate outs, also resetting the playback engine in PT to same, took the audio output from the iMac into Stereo3 input (local) on the Qu-16 and played back from both YouTube and ProTools session without the distortion…the whole 4 minute song played through perfectly.

    I then reset all audio outputs and playback engine to Qu-16 but again it started distorting as before.
    Any and all helpful suggestions to resolve this are greatly appreciated.


    Profile photo of BCEly

    Sounds like the old USB3 issue to me.

    The A&H QU series and Intel USB3 don’t sit well together.

    Some users have disabled the USB 3 functionality on their units via the BIOS – Others can’t as the newer gen Intel BIOS/Chips doesn’t allow you to.

    There’s no long term fix as A&H blame Intel and Intel say they won’t resolve the issue. It’s a “Mexican Stand off” and it’s the QU Users that suffer.

    I for one would dump my QU mixer if I hadn’t paid so much for it.

    Profile photo of Victor Kennedy
    Victor Kennedy

    I cannot believe this. Surely it’s illegal. I just paid $2700 AUD for it last Monday, and have spent more money on stage boxes and other kit to accommodate the new Qu-16.

    This is absolutely bad business. A+H should not be allowed to advertise Qu as being fully plug ‘n play with OS X when they know full well of this issue. This is utter BS.

    I haven’t checked on your suggestion re USB3 yet, and don’t really understand exactly what you mean or how to fix it. I chose A+H Qu-16 instead of a Presonus of similar price and function, because I’ve had A+H old school analogue gear previously in the UK, and liked the solid build.
    I’m mighty pissed off if what you say is true. It means that the unit is basically useless in my studio.
    There will be trouble brewing if this turns out to be the case.

    How do you use yours in the studio if you also have this problem?

    Profile photo of joanmale

    I had a distorting sounds like 24bit/16 conversion distortion which disapear when i moved the faders volume up and down.. yes, fucking strange.
    I was trying different latency options (because the midi didnt sincro correctly with audio, yes, in 2017 still a problem) and that distortion disapeared. I also have loops and hangs with mixcraft 8 which im not sure is because DAW, because some plugins or his interaction with the driver and QU24. Havent made an midi integration yet (is very very difficult, only channels 1 to 8 seems to work, but when i move faders my synths are detunned, great), so i’ using a 2500€ mixer for basic purposes, since i use a 25% of it.
    I was able to work multitrack for mixig, but the FX of the mixer and the resluts wasnt good enough or better than mixing in the box. e
    The idea i have of it is that is good for live (scenes, FX for live etc..) but a bad choice for a studio.
    Pros i have to say that for recording it sounds very clear, but even after trying many latency options i always have to edit the audio tracks sent to synth by MIDI to put in correct tempo, i even have to quantize audio because the beats i sent via midi doesnt play all in time.
    Not a good choice for a studio.

    Profile photo of ZloyKonstantin


    Just plugged in my QU 16 to my macbook after a few years of the mixer laying around and found that I seem to be encountering the same issue – all audio streamed from the mac cia usb is distorted. Is there a solution for this? How did you guys solve your playback issues?

    Profile photo of volounteer

    Have you guys checked the mac for the problem?
    Can you stream to something else with that usb and it is not distorted?

    Victor’s problem sure sounds like a mac issue to me.
    Maybe not but like the bookie said that is the way to bet.

    As BCEly said usb3 is an issue for sure.
    That could be the cause of problems but dont think it matches Victor’s symptom.

    @victor Kennedy
    Are you using PT with OSX ?

    That tells me that mac updates are the problem.
    Did anything change in the Qu from when it was working?

    A&H has problems but these do not sound like they are the Qu as much as mac issues including properly setting up the pc to run audio properly.

    Profile photo of Mike C
    Mike C

    Just to check what firmware version is the QU running.

    Profile photo of Victor Kennedy
    Victor Kennedy

    Sorry I didn’t report back on this issue back when.

    Anyway, after to and fro with official tech support my problem was sorted …it turned out to just be the actual USB cable. Crazy but true. It was a cable that seemed fine but changing it sorted the distortion.

    YES, I ran the QU16 with Pro Tools 12.6 on my iMac for a couple of years without any real hassles. My iMac died 2 months ago and I’m currently running QU16 with a 2012 MacBook Pro running OS X Yosemite 10.10.1. So far no problems so fingers are crossed, as I can’t afford a new iMac which is around $3,000 AUD for the basics.

    I hope the O/P gets it sorted…just try a different USB cable for starters.

    Profile photo of volounteer


    Did you ever find out WHY the cable was causing the problem??

    Profile photo of Victor Kennedy
    Victor Kennedy

    No I didn’t. Just one of those things I suppose…

    Profile photo of volounteer

    @victor Kennedy

    Stuff happens. But still, the cable is not logical for that problem the way it was described.

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