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Is there a workaround for for running multiple audio programs on Windows?
Old 12th December 2017
  #1
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mizzle's Avatar
 

Is there a workaround for for running multiple audio programs on Windows?

Apparently Windows doesn't like multiple programs using the same ASIO driver at once. I find this painfully annoying when I want to run notation software and listen to audio for transcription. The ASIO output is hogged by whichever program is opened first. This is the same for listening to reference mixes. I don't care to import other music into my Cubase project file. I just want to play from iTunes.

Any ways of beating this?
Old 12th December 2017
  #2
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JayTee4303's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mizzle View Post
Apparently Windows doesn't like multiple programs using the same ASIO driver at once. I find this painfully annoying when I want to run notation software and listen to audio for transcription. The ASIO output is hogged by whichever program is opened first. This is the same for listening to reference mixes. I don't care to import other music into my Cubase project file. I just want to play from iTunes.

Any ways of beating this?
Control Panel>Sounds>default audio output>Playback...and ...Recording.

Uncheck the box next to "Hog the Driver like a Greedy Bitch " on both tabs.

Enjoy life.
Old 12th December 2017
  #3
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JayTee4303's Avatar
PS...Windows mostly doesn't mind multiple softwares using the ASIO driver. Instead, Windows objects when the ASIO driver tries to drive multiple hardware audio interfaces.

In fact...ok, I'm not super clear on this...but if I understand correctly...Windows sux at handling audio, so the ASIO driver connects your software directly to hardware, bypassing Windows, and somehow ASIO objects to multiple hardwarez.

YMMV, but...I record from a variety of programs, browser, Media Player, drum machine software, standalone softsynths, etc...into DAW all the time
Old 12th December 2017
  #4
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DAW's sometimes have an option to share ASIO drivers. At least in Sonar and I believe Cubase does if memory serves. Also keep in mind that other apps usually use WDM drivers (Windows Media. YouTube etc.) so make sure other apps are set to use those in preferences. ASIO and WDM can operate simultaneously.
Old 12th December 2017
  #5
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pentagon's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mizzle View Post
Apparently Windows doesn't like multiple programs using the same ASIO driver at once. I find this painfully annoying when I want to run notation software and listen to audio for transcription. The ASIO output is hogged by whichever program is opened first. This is the same for listening to reference mixes. I don't care to import other music into my Cubase project file. I just want to play from iTunes.

Any ways of beating this?
Depends on the audio driver. Some manufacturers make multi-client drivers. RME is one such company where all their drivers are multi-client. As did Echo Digital Audio. So it depends on your audio interface maker -- not really Windows.
Old 12th December 2017
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alndln View Post
DAW's sometimes have an option to share ASIO drivers. At least in Sonar and I believe Cubase does if memory serves.
The "share ASIO" only works if the audio interface in use is multi-client. It's not a generic option -- the ASIO driver for the audio interface (supplied by the company) has to been built for multi-client.

And, yes, Cubase has this option too.
Old 12th December 2017
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pentagon View Post
the ASIO driver for the audio interface (supplied by the company) has to been built for multi-client
This. And another vote for RME.
Old 13th December 2017
  #8
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Pollo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by pentagon View Post
Depends on the audio driver. Some manufacturers make multi-client drivers. RME is one such company where all their drivers are multi-client. As did Echo Digital Audio. So it depends on your audio interface maker -- not really Windows.
What Echo Audio Device is that? My Mona soundcard can't be shared between applications using ASIO.

I think this point has come up before. As far as I know using ASIO no two applications can use the same device. It is however possible to run two ASIO applications each using a different device. I have done that many times.
Old 13th December 2017
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pollo View Post
What Echo Audio Device is that? My Mona soundcard can't be shared between applications using ASIO.

I think this point has come up before. As far as I know using ASIO no two applications can use the same device. It is however possible to run two ASIO applications each using a different device. I have done that many times.
No. ASIO is just a standard. Each driver is different. I can play Bitwig, while watching YouTube and listening to media player and having a game making sound, all at the same time through single device (RME UCX). I've never had to touch any settings in Windows, DAWs, or any apps. Same situation with my older RME PST/96.
Old 13th December 2017
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pollo View Post
What Echo Audio Device is that? My Mona soundcard can't be shared between applications using ASIO.
Echo Layla 3G
Also had the Echo Indigo that supported it to (for a laptop)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pollo View Post
I think this point has come up before. As far as I know using ASIO no two applications can use the same device.
I've been running this for as long as I can remember with RME cards.
As mentioned, the driver needs to support "multi-client"; if it doesn't it won't work.
Old 13th December 2017
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pollo View Post
What Echo Audio Device is that? My Mona soundcard can't be shared between applications using ASIO.

I think this point has come up before. As far as I know using ASIO no two applications can use the same device. It is however possible to run two ASIO applications each using a different device. I have done that many times.
http://files.echoaudio.com/manuals/a...anual_v2.2.pdf

page 43
Old 13th December 2017
  #12
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I'd like to give some general info to iron out a few wrinkles.

First, yes, the ASIO driver must be multi-client. You SHOULD NOT disable your onboard soundcard if it's single client as Windows will grab the ASIO driver making it problematic for other uses. There is NO NEED to disable onboard in this day and age, it's another wives' tale.

Second, WASAPI can allot control of the driver via Exclusive Mode. This can be disabled via the Sound setup window.

Third, Cubase can be set to control access to the driver even if it's multi-client via Release ASIO Driver In Background in Device/Studio setup.

So, to hear both DAW and other programs you have to check these features and settings, select the ASIO driver in both the DAW and Windows with correct routing in each and it should work.

*I can't recall if ASIO4All is multi-client which may be a workaround in certain cases.*
Old 13th December 2017
  #13
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norbury brook's Avatar
 

I just let my audio device(UR824) use ASIO for cubase and it then uses WDM for internet/you tube/media player/iTunes. No problem running all that together out of my main monitors. there's no need for low latency audio(ASIO) unless you're recording. WDM is fine for media playback.


MC
Old 14th December 2017
  #14
As other have pointed out, for two DAW's to use the same ASIO driver/interface, the driver must be multi-client. Not all ASIO drivers are multi-client.

A good example is RME's, I've pasted some text from their UFX's manual below.

If you do not have the luxury of a multi-client ASIO driver, there's a really lovely tool, VoiceMeeter Banana, which amongst other things can act as an mixer for WDM - i.e windows software, like your web browser, and it also installs virtual ASIO drivers which are (as I discovered only this week) multi-client.

So if you have two DAW's using ASIO, these will connect to a virtual ASIO driver managed by VoiceMeeter Banana (you pick the right one from the ASIO driver selection option in your DAW).

While VoiceMeeter Banana makes one and only one connection, to your devices' real ASIO driver, acting as a bridge between the virtual ASIO drivers, which your DAW's are connected to, and the real ASIO driver.

It is a donationware tool - unfortunately it can be a hassle to implement complex routing as described above (simple when you know how) as the manual is not as well written as it could be - the developer is French, so I fully understand why writing the manual in English could be a hurdle.

But once you understand VoiceMeeter Banana - its a great utility.

Of course every application has its quirks, but it does work, in my case I have a terrible ASIO driver on one of my PC's (but the audio interface has outstanding audio quality which is why I put up with this workaround) which while not multi-client can also not be active at the same time as a windows WDM client(and vice versa), i.e if I'm browsing youtube, without VMB, I could not use any ASIO DAW(and vice versa), so VoiceMeeter enables me route WDM apps(native Windows audio) and my DAW(asio), to the same real ASIO/or WDM interface.

Advanced use allows things like routing WDM, or ASIO DAW to the inputs of another DAW via ASIO, to record web audio in an ASIO DAW, for example.

It is not 100% bit accurate, as normal ASIO should be, as its mixer does change the audio discernibly, ever so slightly, when compared with using the real ASIO drivers (which in my case on the PC in question, can only be done from one ASIO DAW, at each point in time).

Guess it alters the audio ever so slightly as it has its own mixer, to merge all this from multiple audio apps.

For serious audio work, I accept the limitations and connect my main DAW to the real ASIO driver, and run only this audio app, for the duration of my session.

"8.5 Multi-client Operation - from RME UFX manual

RME audio interfaces support multi-client operation. Several programs can be used at the same
time. The formats ASIO and WDM can even be used on the same playback channels simultaneously.
But as WDM uses a real-time sample rate conversion (ASIO does not), all active ASIO
software has to use the same sample rate.
However, a better overview is maintained by using the channels exclusively. This is no limitation
at all, because TotalMix allows for any output routing, and therefore a playback of multiple software
on the same hardware outputs.
Inputs can be used from an unlimited number of WDM and ASIO software at the same time, as
the driver simply sends the data to all applications simultaneously.
RME's sophisticated tool DIGICheck is an exception to this rule. It operates like an ASIO host,
using a special technique to access playback channels directly. Therefore DIGICheck is able to
analyse and display playback data from any software, no matter which format it uses.
Old 15th December 2017
  #15
Pentagon and Kodebode pretty much explained very wel that it mainly is a driver implementation thing from the manufacturer, not Windows.

That being said: I demoed one of our systems a few years back with Soundscape, Pro Tools 11, Nuendo and Ableton Live all running at the same time through the SSL MX4. Of course at some point this may become a resource issue, but the driver handled this very well. And yes, I also could play back WMP videos through the MX4 at the same time.

And another vote for Voicemeeter, Vince Burel is a stunning programmer.
Old 17th December 2017
  #16
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Pollo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by studer58 View Post
That only works for WDM, it does not work for ASIO.
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