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Lenovo Thinkpad / FireWire / Firebox / Ricoh / Expresscard Ports question (or two...)
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jellotree
Prenoob

Joined: 15/01/2011 21:39:57
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Hi guys-

Are there any Lenovo ThinkPad owners (t500 and up) that have managed to get the Firebox (or a FW interface) working with no issues?

As I understand, some FW audio interfaces will not work with the Ricoh chipset in the ThinkPad.

I do have a TI expresscard - but from what I read, the FW chipset (Ricoh) controls the expresscard port and renders the TI firewire expresscard useless.

Is that true?

Could the Ricoh FW be turned off in the ThinkPad BiOS? (Does the ThinkPad BIOS even allow that?)

Post 4 (The Legacy driver) in the sticky "How to find out if your PC is compatible with Presonus products and how to improve performance" seems to suggest that Windows 7 has a legacy FW controller.

I am mostly computer illiterate, but does that mean I could uninstall a Ricoh driver (?) and install this legacy thing?

In doing so, does that make my Firebox work with the firewire port in the Thinkpad? Or the expesscard?

Or am i completely misunderstanding that post.

I notice that a few people here have the ThinkPad in their forum signatures. But I also notice that they seem to also use a USB Presonus interface also - which suggests that you can't get a Presonus FireWire product to work.

I haven't bought the ThinkPad (T520) yet as I have read so many conflicting reports on this, and even the Presonus Hardware Compatilbility PDF from Nov 2010http://www.presonus.com/media/pdf/hardware_compatibility.pdf, makes no mention of Ricoh as an incompatible FW chipset.

Any insights would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 29/04/2012 06:33:23

gadget69
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I think you might mean Ideapad? my signature tells the story.. I have the setups listed there and I have to say they work flawlessly. I'm running capture 16+2 and Sony soundforge 10 and VSL and dbx driveware , as well as BPM studio (all simultaneously) and I can surf the internet if I want..

I had to optimize the thing to get dropout free audio but now it's fine... make sure he firewire port doesn't share the HDMI slot..(if you have one)
NOTE: If your having an issue, open a tech support ticket and bring the number here if you want help!
http://support.presonus.com

Tools:
OHCI tool and Latency mon:
http://forums.presonus.com/posts/list/11348.page

We, the few, that have done so much, for so long that now we can do everyything with nothing

dbx forum moderator

Lenova Ideapad Z565
Best connectivity Express card/firewire 2 port (400) that does NOT suggest having the TI chipset. (always worked great)
BYTECC Express card (400/800)07150358281

Asus/AMD processor tower. This setups just works on all firewire devices.

Belkin N450 dual band router, works with SL and Ai mixers
Studiolive 16:4:2
SL Ai24.4.2
ABUSB 1818VSL
Faderport
USB pre interface
Studio one Pro V2
LABsubs

loads of audio, and studio gear, and audiophile sound gear (gearslut)
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Monolithent
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In these forums we have addressed these issues many times.

To answer your first question, there are people who have made this work with an express card. The Ricoh is not on the disapproved list because the list precedes it and they hadn't tested it with their interfaces.

The forum moderator has a Lenovo running a TI express card with no problems. I've used this exact setup in an hp elite book tablet pc with absolutely no problems.

The legacy driver won't make a Ricoh work. It's the answer to Microsoft screwing up the driver in win 7. It's been necessary for 90% or more systems running win 7. I really wish it could fix this issue.

You should be alright buying this notebook. Make sure you have a good return capability from the place you want to buy it just to be safe. Give us a yell as soon as you get it all connected if it doesn't fire right up for you and we can help you troubleshoot the problem.

http://support.presonus.com

Tallest guy in the Mod Squad with all his hair still on his head.

No I'm not a freaking pilot!! The Air Force won't let me have a suit with a zipper...or sometimes shoestrings.

My advice and suggestions should never be considered advice or suggestions. These are mostly insane ramblings of a poor aircraft mechanic who can, strangely enough, still hear.

StudioLive 16.4.2, AudioBox 1818VSL, AudioBox 44VSL, Faderport, Digimax FS,, M-Audio Firewire 410
--MultiBoot System--
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jellotree
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Joined: 15/01/2011 21:39:57
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gadget69 wrote:I think you might mean Ideapad? my signature tells the story.. I have the setups listed there and I have to say they work flawlessly. I'm running capture 16+2 and Sony soundforge 10 and VSL and dbx driveware , as well as BPM studio (all simultaneously) and I can surf the internet if I want..

I had to optimize the thing to get dropout free audio but now it's fine... make sure he firewire port doesn't share the HDMI slot..(if you have one)


Hi Gadget - I'm looking at a ThinkPad, which has a firewire port and an expresscard slot. I think the IdeaPad only has an expresscard slot - which I think causes no problems. Or maybe it does? I dunno. I had the Firebox working flawlessly on a HP laptop with Expresscard firewire for a few years (until the HP died )

There is no HDMI port on the Thinkpad, but are you talking about IRQ conflicts?


Monolithent wrote:In these forums we have addressed these issues many times.

To answer your first question, there are people who have made this work with an express card. The Ricoh is not on the disapproved list because the list precedes it and they hadn't tested it with their interfaces.

The forum moderator has a Lenovo running a TI express card with no problems. I've used this exact setup in an hp elite book tablet pc with absolutely no problems.

The legacy driver won't make a Ricoh work. It's the answer to Microsoft screwing up the driver in win 7. It's been necessary for 90% or more systems running win 7. I really wish it could fix this issue.

You should be alright buying this notebook. Make sure you have a good return capability from the place you want to buy it just to be safe. Give us a yell as soon as you get it all connected if it doesn't fire right up for you and we can help you troubleshoot the problem.



Hey Monolithent, I really appreciate your excellent thread! And thanks for replying here to my post.

Sorry to bother the forum with my concerns. I did search Ricoh and ThinkPad and firewire on these forums. I really have tried to figure this out all on my own searching all music fourms and googling for a long time - only to really come up with no definite postings saying: YES, IT WILL WORK NO PROBLEM.

And I still don't get a solid feeling that it will work. Only that it COULD work, and make sure I have a back-up (a good return policy should it not work).

For the record , I do have a StarTech Expresscard EC13942 (with the two 400 firewire ports on it), that worked with my other laptop. (that one didn't have a firewire port on it though, and I don't recall the controller chip in it, only that the card and laptop worked great with the Firebox)

Thanks for your help!

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 30/04/2012 05:27:10

gadget69
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My laptop is an Ideapad with 2 USB one HDMI port and Ethernet and express ports but with no firewire port. I am using an express card (2 actually and both work) and yes I had a port conflict the HDMI. which Monolithent helped me with.

I think the Lenova's are an excellent platform.
NOTE: If your having an issue, open a tech support ticket and bring the number here if you want help!
http://support.presonus.com

Tools:
OHCI tool and Latency mon:
http://forums.presonus.com/posts/list/11348.page

We, the few, that have done so much, for so long that now we can do everyything with nothing

dbx forum moderator

Lenova Ideapad Z565
Best connectivity Express card/firewire 2 port (400) that does NOT suggest having the TI chipset. (always worked great)
BYTECC Express card (400/800)07150358281

Asus/AMD processor tower. This setups just works on all firewire devices.

Belkin N450 dual band router, works with SL and Ai mixers
Studiolive 16:4:2
SL Ai24.4.2
ABUSB 1818VSL
Faderport
USB pre interface
Studio one Pro V2
LABsubs

loads of audio, and studio gear, and audiophile sound gear (gearslut)
[Email] [Yahoo!]
eike
Preamp
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Joined: 16/04/2009 10:27:02
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i have not heard of a lenovo with expresscard slot not working with a TI-chipset card. mine (a r61i) does work.
but i have heard from other manufacturers with ricoh chipsets, where it was impossible to get firewire working with dice based audio interfaces.
so, you got it right. no one can assure you, it could work (actually i'd up that to "it probably will work"). having a working return policy IS your only insurance.
May the voodoo be with you!
[ StudioOne Developer DSP ]

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Monolithent
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Yeah...what Eike said.

There's no guarantee in this case due to the nature of what you're dealing with. But I agree with Eike, it most likely will.
http://support.presonus.com

Tallest guy in the Mod Squad with all his hair still on his head.

No I'm not a freaking pilot!! The Air Force won't let me have a suit with a zipper...or sometimes shoestrings.

My advice and suggestions should never be considered advice or suggestions. These are mostly insane ramblings of a poor aircraft mechanic who can, strangely enough, still hear.

StudioLive 16.4.2, AudioBox 1818VSL, AudioBox 44VSL, Faderport, Digimax FS,, M-Audio Firewire 410
--MultiBoot System--
Win Vista 64/XP Pro/7 x86/7 x64 - Mac OSX Snow Leopard/Lion
Gigabyte motherboard--SYBA TI Firewire XIO2200A--i7 2600k Quad Core--16 GB DDR III--Custom 2U Rackmount--4 TB Raid (all internal SATA II)--19" Samsung HDMI LCD on pivoting VESA 1U Mount
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jellotree
Prenoob

Joined: 15/01/2011 21:39:57
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Thanks guys.

IF I buy the ThinkPad, I will post back on this thread on whether or not the EC13942 StarTech Expresscard worked with the Lenovo t520 ThinkPad and Firebox.

Cheers!
dgkenney
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Joined: 20/10/2011 04:33:34
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As you can see from my sig, I have a Lenovo 520 with a SYBA SD-EXPC34-2F 1394A Firewire 2-Port ExpressCard.


I have recorded audio for over 1 hr several times with this rig and capture with no problems.

Dan

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 30/04/2012 16:38:24

S1/2 Pro
***Lenovo i5 @ 3.1ghz running Windows 8.1 x64 with Syba Low Profile PCI-Express 1394b/1394a (2B1A) Card, TI Chipset, SD-PEX30009
*** Levono E520 with SYBA SD-EXPC34-2F 1394A Firewire 2-Port ExpressCard *** Win 7 64 Pro
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matthewgorman
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If you haven't bought the laptop yet, go to the small business machines on the lenovo site, and get one with the express card only. I purchased an E520 last September, and it has been flawless. The best performance I have gotten is 13 simultaneous tracks, daisy chaning a 1602 and an FST. Was at 32 for the buffer, and the cpu never got above 10% on the performance meter. This laptop is also used for my day job, so any tweaks that were done are at a minimum. Mostly just power profile, and stopping all non MS processes on startup.
Matt

Lenovo Thinkpad E520, Windows 7 64bt, 8 GB RAM, Intel i5 Processor
StarTech EC13942 34mm Expresscard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16839158010&Tpk=startech%20EC13942
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Jason.Harris
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I'm using an E520 thinkpad with an EC13942 card right now!

it works very well. (although i did a bloatware reset/removal/reinstall of the OS)

viva la Thinkpad!

mpg777
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Joined: 08/05/2012 21:56:19
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The Lenovo T520 has a built firewire port. Would it be safer to buy a ThinkPad that does not have a (potentially insufficient) firewire port and use one of the ExpressCards that utilize the TI chipset?

I really wish someone would produce a simple list of laptops that could be made to work with firewire audio devices without too much finagling.

MG

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 08/05/2012 22:59:01

Monolithent
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Yes, that's a safe bet.

Even if you got one that had FireWire on it you can check the manufacturer's website to find out what chipset is in it.

And to address your wish. The problem with creating a list of computers is that they are constantly changing hardware in them. Combine that with the variations in software make the task nearly impossible.

Unfortunately you have to DI your own homework and try to find one that meets the need and has the proper hardware.

I've wished for the same thing but could never create a list. Maybe I will be able to someday.
http://support.presonus.com

Tallest guy in the Mod Squad with all his hair still on his head.

No I'm not a freaking pilot!! The Air Force won't let me have a suit with a zipper...or sometimes shoestrings.

My advice and suggestions should never be considered advice or suggestions. These are mostly insane ramblings of a poor aircraft mechanic who can, strangely enough, still hear.

StudioLive 16.4.2, AudioBox 1818VSL, AudioBox 44VSL, Faderport, Digimax FS,, M-Audio Firewire 410
--MultiBoot System--
Win Vista 64/XP Pro/7 x86/7 x64 - Mac OSX Snow Leopard/Lion
Gigabyte motherboard--SYBA TI Firewire XIO2200A--i7 2600k Quad Core--16 GB DDR III--Custom 2U Rackmount--4 TB Raid (all internal SATA II)--19" Samsung HDMI LCD on pivoting VESA 1U Mount
Studio One v1 Pro x64
Studio One v1 Artist
Studio One v2 Artist
[Yahoo!]
mpg777
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Joined: 08/05/2012 21:56:19
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Thanks for the advice. I checked out the tech specs on Lenovo's site and I have a couple questions (for you or anyone else reading this).

The chipset information is listed below, but I cannot tell conclusively that the firewire is not using Ricoh, which I have read on a few forums. The fact that their tech specs only mention this Mobile Intel QM67 Express Chipset, does that mean it is the chipset the firewire port would be using, as well?

Chipset: Mobile Intel QM67 Express Chipset
ExpressCard: One slot (ExpressCard/34)
Ports: IEEE 1394 FireWire 400 (4-pin connector; 1394a-2000 standard)

Thanks!!

Matt

Edit: I just found this resource that indicates Ricoh. Is this site reliable?

http://freebsd.0fees.net/Notebooks/info/notebook/Lenovo/ThinkPad-T520/42/10

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 09/05/2012 17:58:00

AGS
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Joined: 30/05/2012 03:30:31
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hi all,

i have a Thinkpad E420 (using ricoh), expresscard with approved TI chipset (XIO2200) and a Firebox. the box and my computer seem to be communicating with each other fine but all the audio is garbled digital noise. any suggestions?? is this because of Ricoh?

 
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