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midi latency DAW Software
Old 24th August 2007
  #1
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midi latency

I can't make tracks in Pro Tools with my midi keyboard because the latency kills me. How do I get my midi keyboard to play my vst's when I hit the keyboard instead of many milliseconds later? Of course I've never had this problem with hardware...and I was wanting to integrate vst instruments into my setup. Please help. I know it's definately not the speed of my computer. Also...I am running Pro Tools 7
Old 25th August 2007
  #2
You probably know this below...

In addition to the buffer settings for your interface, which buffer transmissions between the CPU and audio device, your DAW will have a monitoring latency setting. Many people find they have to change the settings of monitoring buffer depending on what they're doing on the computer.

If they're tracking VSTs, they try to get that setting as low as possible. If it's late in a big project, that may require freezing or creating bounces (or temporary bounces, just for tracking, with all those nasty CPU-guzzling convo reverb and VST tracks temporarily inactive).

Then, when you're mixing, you can set the monitoring buffer really big, causing more monitoring latency -- but as long as you're not doing a lot of super speed-precise fader-riding, you should be fine with even a 50 ms or greater latency.
Old 25th August 2007
  #3
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It's not an audio thing. I only hear it when I play notes on my keyboard. It doesn't affect any other recording, or mixing capabilities. Everything is fine as far as recording audio....no latency there......It's so annoying...I hit a note, then............................... the note plays
Old 25th August 2007
  #4
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KBOY's Avatar
 

That is audio latency. The virtual instrument is audio
Old 25th August 2007
  #5
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stevep's Avatar
True, its not that the MIDI data is late, its the audio from the soft synth

it dosent bother me, but ive had some clients that cant deal with it... its frustrating



.
Old 25th August 2007
  #6
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Never been able to get it acceptable in PTLE. I can get to serious low latencies with my RME. If I have a real piano player or keyboard player in here they can always tell the latency unless I go stupid low with it. Then if need be I'll dump a mix and start a new project with no plugs in order to achieve that. Then import into the original project when done.
Old 25th August 2007
  #7
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jdseptor's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by stevens119 View Post
I can't make tracks in Pro Tools with my midi keyboard because the latency kills me. How do I get my midi keyboard to play my vst's when I hit the keyboard instead of many milliseconds later? Of course I've never had this problem with hardware...and I was wanting to integrate vst instruments into my setup. Please help. I know it's definately not the speed of my computer. Also...I am running Pro Tools 7
mac or pc?
Old 25th August 2007
  #8
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it's a pc
Old 25th August 2007
  #9
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this may help describe my problem

I plugged a guitar in and played it, while playing my midi controller...I got no latency from the guitar... while the vst inst was late
Old 25th August 2007
  #10
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Gear Tramp's Avatar
 

Set the Buffer to 64. This is as low as you can possibly get the latency when playing/recording VI's. Turn OFF low-latency monitoring and now your keyboard and guitar will have the same response, albeit with a small amount of latency.

After you get enough of it, you'll be posting about what the best hardware synth is, so you can avoid the latency completely.
Old 25th August 2007
  #11
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VST instruments can be hella hard on a machine. Some have huge sample libs behind them that can take literally GIGS of RAM to buffer. Making a bottleneck on RAM and HD throughput. Some have complex convolution algortihms that chooke a CPU that's busy trying to do other things.

My computer ONLY does synths...there's no way I could handle a BFD drumkit, NI AK Piano, VSL stirings, etc sequenced live. I can usually handle any ONE perfectly well--and it gets printed as audio.

I've never done MIDI work with PTLE....because it blows. Maybe it blows more than I thought for that. Do RTAS instruments have a different buffer than the main audio engine or something? I can set my GSIF drivers differently for Gigastudio than the ASIO buffer in Cubase...
Old 26th August 2007
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gear Tramp View Post
Set the Buffer to 64. This is as low as you can possibly get the latency when playing/recording VI's. Turn OFF low-latency monitoring and now your keyboard and guitar will have the same response, albeit with a small amount of latency.

After you get enough of it, you'll be posting about what the best hardware synth is, so you can avoid the latency completely.
This is the answer I was looking for. Thanks, Im going to try it out.
Old 26th August 2007
  #13
In terms of performance reducing playback buffer is correct. In terms of mixdown...ignore all of the above. The problem you then have is called MIDI offset latency. What you need to do is make an instrument track and an audio track. Bus the midi track to the audio track. Measure how late the audio signal is (i.e. how many samples between the start of the input in each track. Now you know exactly how many samples your audio is later than input. Now you can set the...you guessed it...midi offset to the number of samples your audio is late by.

Good luck!
Old 26th August 2007
  #14
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yeah....where do I set the offset in Pro Tools
Old 26th August 2007
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevens119 View Post
this may help describe my problem

I plugged a guitar in and played it, while playing my midi controller...I got no latency from the guitar... while the vst inst was late
So... are you sure your monitoring the guitar THROUGH THE CPU? (Doesn't sound like it to me. [UPDATE: after reading the last couple of posts, it looks like you're already on this tip. People get pretty confused about what they're listening to. I guess it's understandable.])

Most folks will tend to set up their interface to use its onboard (zero or) near-zero latency monitoring so as to avoid more noticeable monitoring latency from making the round rip through the CPU.

A VST only has to go through the DA part of that -- so the trip is only half as long-- but the VSTi instrument takes a certain amount of time to create/process its sound and, even with low monitoring latency it can still more than a few ms to the round trip.

With most of the VSTi's I use, the instrument processing time seems minimal compared to the system monitoring latency. (My round trip latency for my FW device is about 8 ms, as measured by loopback. So, for a VST, about 4 ms plus whatever time the VSTi takes to do its thing.)
Old 4th September 2007
  #16
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I set the buffer to 128. Until now I have always set it for 2048 because of the extra boost I get while mixing. This totally fixed the problem, and my vst's play exactly when expected....Immediately. Thanks for all the help
Old 4th September 2007
  #17
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Generally you can have it set to low when tracking and then bump it up for mixing... If there is a line between those two for you(there aren't for everyone).
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