Tech Focus

Tech Focus: The New RME Fireface UFX III Audio Interface

Detailing the feature set, connectivity, options and capabilities of the company's latest flagship audio interface.
The new RME Fireface UFX III flagship audio interface.

The Fireface UFX III is RME’s latest flagship audio interface that boasts an impressive array of features, making it the ideal choice for professional audio engineers and musicians. With its advanced audio driver technology and superior build quality, the Fireface UFX III is a top-of-the-line solution for recording, mixing, and mastering in the studio or on-the-go. Precise German engineering and a relentless pursuit of sonic perfection will ensure the highest quality results — no matter what the application.

RME interfaces provide ultra-low latency operation in Mac and Windows environments — this makes them the ideal interface for using virtual instruments and effects. Perhaps most importantly, their stability is unmatched in the industry. This means they will not only perform perfectly on your next project on stage or in the studio, but for years to come. When it counts, you can depend on RME as your go-to interface thanks to stable, trouble-free drivers available on both Mac and PC.

Comprehensive Connectivity

The front panel of the Fireface UFX III provides four (4) high-performance XLR/TRS combo inputs for microphone, instrument and line signals, two stereo headphone jacks with +19 dBu output level, MIDI I/O, and a USB port. In combination with the DURec function (Direct USB Recording), the USB port allows independent recording of selected input and output signals (up to 80 channels) to a connected USB storage medium.

Front and back panel views of the Fireface UFX III.

The rear panel reveals the full connectivity of the Fireface UFX III. Besides another MIDI I/O, the two optical ADAT I/Os, an AES/EBU I/O, and eight (8) balanced analog outputs with line level (including XLR stereo monitor outputs) are available. With the new Multi-Mode, the two ADAT I/Os can be used as separate optical SPDIF inputs and outputs in addition to the AES I/O.

Further, the Fireface UFX III offers an optical MADI interface (SC) with 64 bidirectional channels. The Word Clock connectors (BNC) work as alternative coaxial MADI input and output if required.

The Fireface UFX III is connected to the computer via USB 3.0. In compatible USB 2.0 mode, all analog and digital I/Os are available, except for the MADI channels. The second USB port on the rear panel is used to connect an optional ARC USB remote control. The Fireface UFX III can also be used with an iPAD.

Direct Recording Via USB

Via the digital DURec (Direct USB Recording) recording function, up to 80 inputs and outputs of the Fireface UFX III can be recorded directly to (and read from) a USB storage medium.

All 188 input and output channels can be individually chosen for recording and playback.

Therefore DURec uses the integrated DSP which provides stand-alone operation without the need for a computer. The potential applications include stand-alone field recordings, live and rehearsal recordings, or playback of live recordings for virtual soundchecks.

The automatic naming of the tracks in the DAW according to the assigned names in the TotalMix FX software proves to be very practical.

High-Performance Tools & Technologies

With SteadyClock FS the Fireface UFX III features RME’s latest clock and jitter suppression technology. Besides further reduced inherent jitter, SteadyClock FS offers extremely effective jitter suppression even at low frequencies on all digital input signals.

Also integrated are both the DSP-based TotalMix FX mixer with its comprehensive routing, monitoring and effects options, and the DIGICheck analysis tool, which allows measuring and analyzing the digital data streams to and from the Fireface UFX III with highest precision.

TotalMix FX mixer with comprehensive routing, monitoring and effects options.

USB 3.0 Class Compliant

In addition to driver-based USB operation and stand-alone mode (without a connected computer), the Fireface UFX III offers a Class Compliant mode for native operation with Windows, macOS and Linux. As the first RME audio interface with full USB 3.0 support in CC mode, the Fireface UFX III provides all 94 I/O channels driverless. In addition to the use with a computer, the CC mode allows controlling the UFX III via the optionally available TotalMix FX for iPad app.

Go here for more specifics on the RME Fireface UFX III.

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