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> Asio Jarring With Fast Ezdrummer
Owen
post Oct 16 2007, 10:46 PM
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Okay, I have a problem, I realise the answer will probably be that my pc cant cope but I ask in the hope that maybe there is a fix.

Basically, when I'm outputting high speed EzDrummer templates through my ASIO sounddrivers - both the 4ALL through my soundcard and the Toneport version from Line 6, after a couple of repititions of the loop the drum sounds start to jar - this happens in some of the 1/16 loops with more complexity and almost any of the 1/32 loops.

When I'm running such loops processor usage - on both my processors - dual 866mhz is running at 60% respectively and I'm no where near running out of ram.

Increasing the ASIO buffer size helps to a point, but after extensive fiddling there doesnt seem like much that can be done and its quite irritating when I want to dive into some blastbeat recording only to find that the drums cant keep up.

Any help/suggestions are appreciated.

Thanks in advance guyz. cool.gif tongue.gif


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Andrew Cockburn
post Oct 16 2007, 11:34 PM
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This may be a latency issue - increasing the buffer size should help that, but there should also be a way of increasing latency that will help a lot more. How you do this depends exactly on your ASIO driver.

Line 6 drivers let you do it I think, this may be expressed in milliseconds or sample numbers. Either way, keep increasing it until you hear the jittering clear up.


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Owen
post Oct 16 2007, 11:38 PM
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Yeah, I have it maxed out, makes a difference, but again, not much.


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Saoirse O'Shea
post Oct 17 2007, 02:34 AM
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Hi Owen,
It does sound like the soundcard/pc is unable to clear the buffer before the next iteration thus, as Andrew says, causing jitter.

A couple of things apart from different latency settings to try - increasing in difficulty/cost:

Turn off any background software/application including virus checkers/auto update etc

reduce the number of tracks you have open ( a lot of people often open 8 tracks and then go and only use 4 - it all adds to overhead).

turn off effects temporarily

turn off any unused vsti's

freeze any unused tracks

only use effects sparingly and preferably on buss and/or at mix down

NB - from here on it's a case of doing pc maintenance - don't do the following unless you're confident you know what you're doing. If in doubt get a tech to help:

move sound card to lowest possible irq channel - usually immediately after video card

new drivers for your sound card

new drivers for mobo

more ram - in matched pairs

new video card (video cards tend to hog the internal bus - an audio pc doesn't need an all singing all dancing video card. All those really nice top of the range video cards are real hogs on the transfer pipe - audio software is 2D and really doesn't need all the bells and whistles. Does assume that you only do 2d work though on an audio pc.)

faster cpu

new soundcard

new mobo


new pc...

Cheers,
Tony

Oh and one other thing to try quickly - make sure that you have your audio interface and the sequencer set to the same sampling frequency ie both at 44.1 kHz or both at 96 and so on don't have one at 44.1 and the other at 48...

(I'm assuming that you can't run a master clock btw)


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Saoirse O'Shea
post Oct 17 2007, 06:20 AM
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Hi Owen,
been doing some more looking around. On the Sonar forum there is a thread - which also talks about EZDrummer - concerning sample midi accuracy and 'midi jitter' (I'm putting that in '' as I don't like the term). Should say that this is a LONG thread - I've only skimmed the thread but from it a couple of points:

1) doesn't look like you're alone on this.

2) Inaccurate time stamp here might be down to EZ (and indeed vsti's more generally that use a particular part of the Windows OS)

3) That inaccuracy causes an increasing error in time sync which induces what Andrew and I are calling 'jitter'

Now MAYBE one way round this if it's 'midi jitter' is to render the track - as I recall rendering in Reaper (and other daws) will write the midi out effectively as audio and so at least fix/freeze the jitter .

IF this is the root of the problem (and tbh I'm not entirely convinced by the 'midi jitter' theme of the thread) then freezing/track delay compensation won't sort out the issue. IF i'd (maybe a big IF) I'd render the drums to audio and loop them as 'midi jitter' here might well be an inherent Windows OS issue IF a vst uses 'old' Windows MM API call.

Cheers,
Tony


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Owen
post Oct 18 2007, 02:39 AM
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Cheers Tony, I'll have a look at that,

I think I've got the first version of EzDrummer here, maybe its an error thats not been patched until later.

I believe rendering does fix it although I find that to be a pain when I'm looking for drum loops that fit a certain section of track.

I also have another error with EzDrummer in that when it opens sometimes it crashes Reaper and then when I open Reaper again it fails to detect any audio drivers until I do a full restart, so I'm concluding that the software itself isnt very stable.

Neither is my pc, that being said, sometimes I get bluescreening when unplugging my USB audio interface.

Thanks for the help smile.gif


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Andrew Cockburn
post Oct 18 2007, 02:46 AM
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FWIW, I have had the occasional probelm with Reaper & VSTs - problem is the VST manufacturers never test with Reaper, its always Cubase, Logic and the other big names. Occasionally something gets through and causes a probelm, most ikely due to a glitch in the VST that CUbase forgives but Reaper doesn't. I had a probelm with EXD not loading samples but the Reaper people fixed it in less than 24 hours after I reported it. So I am trying to say it could be Reaper not necessarily EZD. Having said that, I have no probelms with Reaper + EZD.

One thing - my EZD takes forever to load its samples. While it is loading, things behave badly, so check you are not running into this. You can tell from the EZD window - it has a meter that tells you how many samples it has left to load.


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Saoirse O'Shea
post Oct 18 2007, 05:39 AM
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Andrew's right Owen wrt the amount of testing that goes on with soft synths and other vstis generally.

Nonetheless there are error reports for EZ for Sonar (which has a user base equivalent or larger then Cubase in the US) and also on some of the other big name Daws. This might indicate an issue in the coding of EZ that may have been patched so it's certainly worth updating if you can.

The crash whilst loading - sounds a bit like a crash I've had some time back (with Cubase ironically) when loading an early version of Kontakt. It was caused in that case by a buffer overrun that NI- Kontakt's developers - patched. However your crash may well be different - if you can report on both your sequencer forum and the EZ one - someone else there may have the same issue and might know a workround/solution.

Blue (and worse black) screen of death is/was pretty common though my audio pc has ben pretty stable for a while - touch wood. If it's really bad maybe selectively uninstall first EZ and see if the pc is stable with your daw: if it isn't uninstall the daw put a new one in to test that with EZ and see what happens? That might help pin point if its software related to either the daw or EZ...

Debugging some music software ultimately is a real pain the backside. TBH I've ended up passing on a few in the past as I've just never got them to work with any consistency. Just hope you have more luck here as it can be really frustrating.

Let us know how you're doing and I'm sure we'll all help where we can.

Cheers,
Tony


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Owen
post Oct 18 2007, 05:52 AM
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Ok, thanks again for your help guys, I believe my mate has a copy of Cubase somewhere so I'll test it all out with that and get back to you. tongue.gif


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