Mike Slinn

RME TotalMix Notes

Published 2020-03-01. Last modified 2023-10-20.
Time to read: 6 minutes.

This page is part of the av_studio collection.

I have an RME Fireface UC and an RME Fireface UFX III, which I updated from a Fireface UFX. All of these audio interfaces work with RME TotalMix software.

DAW software (such as Ableton Live and Pro Tools) is unaffected by mute button settings in RME TotalMix.

Upgrading From RME UFX to UFX III

The RME Fireface UC and UFX use Audio device type ASIO Fireface USB, but the Fireface UFX III uses ASIO MADIFace USB:

I had recorded many songs using Pro Tools and Ableton Live, using a Fireface UFX. After upgrading to the Fireface UFX III, opening any song would display an error message. This is the Pro Tools error message:

Pressing the No button and then saving the song as soon as it loads causes the song to be updated to the new ASIO driver. The error no longer displays for this song; however, every other old song will also require the same updated ASIO information to be saved.


Talkback Activates this channel as the receiver of the Talkback signal. In this fashion, Talkback can be sent to any output, not just the Phones in the Control Room section. Another application could be to send a certain signal to specific outputs with the push of a button.
 – TotalMix HTML Help

I placed a supercardioid mic that I was not using on a short stand in front of my DAW and plugged it into ADAT8 of my Behringer ADA8200. The ADA8200 is daisy-chained to my RME UFX III.

I used the TotalMix menu item Options / Settings / Talkback Input to ADAT 8 to establish this microphone as the talkback microphone.

This changed the banner background for ADAT 8 to dark blue/gray, as shown in the image below right.

I then double-clicked on the label (ADAT 8), and I changed the label to Talkback (It shows as    Talk    in the above-right image).

The output mix for a submix, for example, the submix that is provided to the Phones 1 output jack, is determined by the volumes of each input that you set for that submix.

  1. After selecting output Phones 1,
  2. I raised the output level to db0 for the Talkback input by double-clicking on the slider, as shown in the image to the right.

Now that talkback is set up, you could use an RME ARC USB to control talkback conveniently.

Copy/Pasting A Submix

You can copy the input volume settings for a submix and paste those settings onto the submix for another output, for example, Phones 2 and Phones 3. Here is a step-by-step set of instructions:

I right-clicked within the Phones 1 subpanel and selected Copy/Mirror Output Phones 1 from the pop-up menu.

I then right-clicked within the Phones 2 subpanel and selected Paste Submix from Phones 1 from the pop-up menu. Now, the submixes for Phone 1 and Phone 2 are the same.

For the Phones 3 subpanel, I again right-clicked within the Phones 3 subpanel and selected Paste Submix from Phones 1 from the pop-up menu. Now, the submix for Phone 1, Phone 2 and Phone 3 are all the same.

Monitoring a Submix with Cue

I send the stereo submix from outputs 7 and 8 of my RME UFX III to the external microphone input jack of my Sony Alpha 7 mark III camera. This allows the camera to record the same high-quality audio that is being recorded by Pro Tools, without latency.

So that I can remember the purpose of the AN7/8 submix, I renamed it to Sony A7iii by double-clicking on the submix title.

It is important to listen to the submix before making a video recording with the camera. That is the purpose of cueing.

Designate the output device that will be used to listen to the submix to be monitored by using the menu items Assign ▼ / Cue/PFL to.

In the image to the right, Phones 1 is about to be selected for this purpose.

Now, wearing the headphones, when I click on the dark green CUE button in the Sony A7iii submix panel, the CUE button becomes bright green, and I will hear the submix that is being sent to the camera.

Clicking on the CUE button again reverts the submix sent to the headphones to the normal Phones 1 submix and restores the CUE button to its normal dark green color.

Now that cueing is set up, you could use an RME ARC USB to control cueing conveniently.

Dynamics Presets

I tried to make sense of the RME TotalMix dynamics presets. I am unhappy with the following explanations, hopefully I can discover more information.

Auto Level Fast (A)
Automatic limiter to control peaks quickly, good for high-frequency sound
Auto Level Slow (A)
Automatic limiter to control peaks slowly, good for low-frequency sound
Compactor (C)
Compander, which compresses and then expands the sound to raise perceived volume
Compactor II (C+A)
What is this for?
Hard Noise Gate (C)
Removes unwanted low-level noise
Kick (C)
A compressor set to enhance a kick drum
Mix Compressor (C)
A compressor to be used across a master bus, mix bus or subgroup
Mix Expander (C)
AQn expander to be used across a master bus, mix bus or subgroup
Mix Limiter (C)
A limiter to control peaks on a master bus, mix bus or subgroup
Music Compressor (C)
What is this for?
Music Expander (C)
What is this for?
Output Protector (A)
What is this for?
Smooth Noise Gate (C)
A noise gate that has softer attack times to seem less choppy
Snare (C)
A compressor set for a snare drum, good starting point for a voice dynamic setting
Squeeze (C+A)
an aggressive compressor/limiter set to squash peaks and control levels

If you use a preset, then look at the preset menu, the preset that was used most recently is not highlighted. The software would be much more user-friendly if the matching preset was highlighted.

RME TotalMix Workspaces and Snapshots

In my studio, the Windows/WSL2 computer called Bear stores RME TotalMix settings in $music/instruments/rme (C:\sites\music.mslinn.com\instruments\rme). The files are:

default.tmss snapshot
This file defines the RME TotalMix Default snapshot. Snapshots store the mixer settings. Users that load this snapshot can instantly switch between 3 channel layouts (Default, Sax and Harp), and choose between 2 mute groups (group 1: mute some, group 2: mute all).
default.tmws workspace
Workspaces save all settings as a complete backup, including routing modes, snapshots and fader groups.

Snapshots affect everything you can see in this screenshot of RME TotalMix and more:

Recording Scenarios

Recording scenarios are defined in the TotalMix Default workspace as Snapshots Default, Sax and Harp:

  • Default: AKG1 for room ambiance, Audix for singer 1, Audix2 mic for singer 2, Behringer for singer 3, Mic 11/Guitar for guitar, Guitar2 input muted, Bass Amp, Guitar Amp, Roland HPD-15.
  • Just Me: Mute group 1 modifies Default; mutes Audix2, Behringer, Guitar2, Bass Amp, and Guitar Amp.
  • Playback: Mute group 2 modifies Default; mutes all inputs.
  • Sax: DPA mic for saxophone, AKG1 for room ambiance, Audix right up against the bell of the sax (on a stand), Roland HPD-15.
  • Harp: (cable unknown), AKG1 for room ambiance, Behringer aimed in the middle of the soundboard, Roland HPD-15.
  • Bass amp gain to noon
  • Mic preamp gain to noon

Enabling Reverb and Echo

The TotalMix effects bus that carries the reverb and echo effects is disabled by default. Oddly enough, to enable it you need to open the Fireface/MADIface Settings applet. On Windows, the applet might be hidden. Click on the applet with flames behind the word "RME".

When the Fireface/MADIface Settings applet opens for the first time, it will look like the image below. Enable Input Options / EQ+D for Record.

The following was taken from this video, starting at 0:47 seconds:

The reverb and delay effects are set up as a bus, using input sends and output returns. In the Control Strip, click Show FX to open the panel. Turn on Reverb and/or Echo and select a factory preset, or choose your own settings. Now go to the input channel and raise the FX send to feed the reverb bus. Go to the output channel where you want to hear the effect and raise the FX return. This can be accessed either with the smaller fader on the channel strip or the knob inside the settings panel.

The reverb signal cannot be recorded directly, as can be done with EQ and Dynamics. If you would like to record the output signal, use the Loopback feature in TotalMix FX.

TotalMix Remote

The RME UFX audio interface is attached to Bear. Bear is at IP address TotalMix Remote uses port 7009 by default.

Many types of remote devices can run Remote TotalMix, including old and new iPads, Android phones, and laptops. More than one device can connect simultaneously.

TotalMix Remote, running on a computer-sized monitor, looks like this:


Faders Won’t Highlight?

If the output faders refuse to be highlighted, then the mix cannot be adjusted. The solution is to enable Submix routing mode by enabling the SUBMIX button, as shown in the image to the right.

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