Published December 13, 2015
The USB bus architecture allows multiple devices to connect to a computer using a standardized cable, plug, and communications protocol. Since its inception, USB has gone through three major versions: USB 1, USB 2.0, and now, USB 3.0.
All versions of USB are intended to be backward compatible, meaning that a USB 1 device should work on a USB 2.0 port, and a USB 2.0 device should work on a USB 3.0 port. However, in certain circumstances, there can be incompatibilities that result in poor performance from an older device plugged into a newer USB port.
For PCs running Windows 7 or prior: It is necessary to update the chipset drivers for your USB 3.0 architecture. Windows 7, like all prior versions of Windows, is not inherently compatible with USB 3.0.
What is USB 3.0?
USB 3.0 is a new version of the USB bus that offers many new improvements and features. These include:
- More bandwidth
- Faster transmission speeds
- Support for higher power demands
- Longer cable length
More detailed info about the technical aspects of USB 3.0 can be found here.
How do I know if I have my Studio 192 plugged into USB 3.0?
There are three ways to tell if your computer has USB 3.0 functionality:
1. Check the technical specifications of your computer.
The technical specifications in the manual that came with your computer should list the presence of USB 3.0 ports.
2. Physically inspect the ports on your computer.
A USB 3.0 port will appear distinct from regular USB 2.0 and USB 1 ports in two ways: by color and by markings. Typically, a USB 3.0 port will appear colored blue on the inside or will have markings on the outside that state “SS” (Super Speed) or “3.0.” Below is an example of what a common USB 3.0 port looks like:
3. Check in the computer’s internal properties.
For PCs running Windows: Navigate to the Device Manager and scroll to the bottom of the list of categories. There will be a category for “Universal Serial Bus Controllers”; expand it. If you see any devices present labeled as below, the computer has USB 3.0 ports:
- USB 3.0
Any device with these features in its title is a USB 3.0 controller, or an element of that controller, so the system at least has USB 3.0 capability.
For Macs: We recommend consulting this article. The important element to note:
- From the Apple menu, choose About this Mac.
- Click More Info.
- Click System Report.
- In the Hardware section of the System Report, click USB.
- If your Mac has USB 3.0 ports, you will see both a USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 selection.
Determining the Computer’s USB 3.0 Chipset
1. Open the Device Manager
2. Scroll to the bottom of the list of categories and open “Universal Serial Bus Controllers”
3. Locate the USB 3.0 components, per the image below. In this example, our chipset drivers are from Renesas.
4. Visit the Web site for the vendor and download the latest drivers for your chipset. The list below provides links to each developer’s support site:
For PCs running Windows 8 and Windows 10, USB 3.0 is natively supported in the operating system. If you are experiencing issues, you may wish to update your USB 3.0 drivers from the manufacturer’s Web site, following the instructions above.
An Alternate Solution for Windows 7 and Windows 8 PCs is to enter your System BIOS at boot-up and disable the xHCI Controller. To find out how to enter your BIOS, consult your motherboard or system manual for instructions. This will turn off USB 3.0 functionality at the motherboard level before Windows had a chance to load. Windows will only see and operate on USB 2.0 functionality. We have found this to be a working solution for Dell Inspiron and other recent model systems made in 2013 and newer.
For Macs, Mac OS X. USB 3.0 is only supported on Macs running Mac OS X 10.7.5 or above. In addition, the Mac’s operating system must be fully updated to achieve proper functionality.
Current USB 3.0 Support with PreSonus Products
Below is a grid representing current PreSonus support for specific USB 3.0 controllers. We have tested compatibility with the latest drivers from the manufacturer’s Web site and with our latest Studio 192 driver.
Please update your USB 3.0 chipset drivers using the links above before consulting this guide for proper support for your chipset.
Please contact PreSonus Technical Support by creating a Support Ticket at My.PreSonus.com for further assistance.