I’m running into an issue with my Focal Arche that I would like some help with.
I have my Arche hooked up to my PC (Windows 10 1909) via a USB A -> USB B cable.
When I set the bitrate manually to 48 kHz, or 96 kHz and don’t use exclusive mode via Tidal, Arche works flawlessly and there are no issues.
My issue is that when I set the bitrate to 16/44.1 kHz, or 16/88.2 kHz or when I play Tidal via the app in exclusive mode where Tidal sends the bit perfect signal directly to Arche and the bitrate on Arche changes based on source file, after some random time - some hours of listening I get “NO SIG” on Arche and no sound is played. Windows and Tidal look like all is working normally, no errors or signs of issues are to be seen. After this happens the only way to have Arche play music again is to set bitrate to 48 kHz, or 96 kHz manually and unplug the USB from the PC (unplugging it from the back of Arche does not help) and plug it back in. When I change the bitrate to 16/44.1 kHz, or 16/88.2 kHz or play Tidal in exclusive mode the sound cuts out within seconds and “NO SIG” is shown again.
I have to turn the PC off (restart is not enough) and back on for the issue to be gone, but it is only a matter of time until it pops up again.
What I have tried:
- I thought the issue may be my PC, so I plugged Arche into my laptop, but the problem manifested itself there too
- I tried connecting Arche to my PC via toslink, here the sound does not cut out (although I would have to test this more), but exclusive mode in Tidal does not automatically change the bitrate in Arche, so this is not an ideal solution for me. Also when plugged in via toslink, there is a weird pop every time I start a playback or a new sound (Windows notification etc) is played and it drives me crazy.
- I tried multiple USB ports on my PC, all behave the same way
- I e-mailed Focal, but I only got a generic reply to get in touch with my local dealer
What I think may be the issue:
- issue with Arche driver for Windows - if this was the case, there would be more people with this issue, but I have not found or heard of anyone else
- issue with my PC - I ruled this out as the same issue was seen on a completely different machine (my laptop)
- issue with Windows - no other device is having these issues (I have a PC soundcard - Soundblaster ZxR and have no issues there, the onboard Realtek soundcard is also ok as demostrated with toslink connection)
- issue with my USB cable - this is one common variable (aside from the Arche) for both devices I tried this on, will try to get a new cable and see if that helps, but it is still strange that issue would be only with some bitrates and not with others pointing me more to a software issue rather than hardware
- issue with my Arche - hardware issue? it acts strange after it heats up? will test a theory where when the issue occurs I will stop using Arche for a couple hours to let it cool down and see if the problem is fixed then
Did anyone with Arche or any other USB DAC experience similar issues? Do you have any possible ideas on what may be wrong and how to fix it?
Thanks for any ideas.