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DESPERATE!! Increasing Audio Dropouts

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Re: DESPERATE!! Increasing Audio Dropouts

Postby Pete Kaine » Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:20 pm

James Perrett wrote:Take a look at the first post Pete - though it isn't clear what each drive contains...
Yep, my bad.

James Perrett wrote:One other thought - could the OP try downloading Reaper and running it to see if the problems are still present.

Given OP's experience with Latency Mon going mental outside of Cubase, I think we're safe to assume at this point that it's not a sequencer lead issue.

BasUitermark wrote:It's a 3 port firewire card. I checked the card itself and it is a "Sonnos Allegro FW800".

Thanks, that's one of the newer working cards, so that should confirm we can forget about that for the time being.

BasUitermark wrote:To elaborate a bit on that. It's been a 50/50 chance of having Cubase working on start up. If it doesn't work on start up it won't work all day. Doesn't matter how many times I restart my PC or how many times I restart Cubase it will give me the same peaked out average load on all buffer sizes and minute long audio drop outs all day.

Well, that's a curve ball. I've not heard of it downing it for a day before.

So, if it's gone one day and back the next, is there a pattern? Normally, at that point I'd bee looking for OS or software updates that are running and failing in the background, but I'd expect them to cause problems for an hour here or there at a time. Not, for longer durations.

BasUitermark wrote:I run my OS and Cubase from a 250 Gb SSD. This Windows instance is about 5 years old now. Started on Windows 8 and updated to Windows 10 when it came out.

Yeah, right choice on the SSD. As I someone else has noted, inline upgrades can sometimes be flakey at best, and I wouldn't be surprised to see a clean install fix it, although I'm not certain enough to suggest you wipe anything to find out.

Do you have a blank drive that you could do a test install on?

BasUitermark wrote:Then I have a 3 TB HDD (5 years old) for all my bulk audio storage (VSTi's, old projects, IR's, stems, Nail the Mix Sessions, midi files, etc.). Lastly I have a 4 Tb personal drive (a month old, last one passed away).

Those are old enough that I'd be a bit wary about another one maybe being on the way out.

https://support.wdc.com/knowledgebase/a ... spx?ID=940

The link above will lead you to WD's official drive tool for checking your older HDD's. Worth running it to check how healthy they are.

BasUitermark wrote:Done, but I don't think it will help much as this graphics card just went in yesterday.

I didn't realise. However, the choice of drivers and avoiding NV experience are all conducive to a happier system, so worth doing regardless even if it doesn't otherwise solve anything.

BasUitermark wrote:Done, but I don't think it will help much as this graphics card just went in yesterday.

I didn't realise. However, the choice of drivers and avoiding NV experience are all conducive to a happier system, so worth doing regardless even if it doesn't otherwise solve anything.

BasUitermark wrote:Is it maybe a good idea to format my C drive and do a fresh install of everything, seeing how old this instance is?

I think it might be, judging by your later response it looks like your prepared for this course of action too.
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Re: DESPERATE!! Increasing Audio Dropouts

Postby James Perrett » Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:57 pm

Pete Kaine wrote:
BasUitermark wrote:To elaborate a bit on that. It's been a 50/50 chance of having Cubase working on start up. If it doesn't work on start up it won't work all day. Doesn't matter how many times I restart my PC or how many times I restart Cubase it will give me the same peaked out average load on all buffer sizes and minute long audio drop outs all day.

Well, that's a curve ball. I've not heard of it downing it for a day before.

A while ago I had something slightly similar - except in this case the computer would sometimes not boot on some days. I really couldn't work out what was causing it as it seemed random. However, one day I accidentally removed a USB hub and it worked. I tried adding the devices to the hub one by one and it turned out to be a DVD writer causing the problem. So could there be some kind of device connected to your computer that you've forgotten about or that you have connected some days and not others? Do you always switch everything on in the same order?
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Re: DESPERATE!! Increasing Audio Dropouts

Postby BasUitermark » Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:54 pm

Just finished reïnstalling everything. It took me a couple of hours but I'm finally done.

And it worked!!!

Before I wasn't able to run my session below a buffer size of 2048. Now I can go as low as 64 (with a plugin count of around 180 plugins), maybe 32 if it's a simple project.

It wasn't just my windows instance but also a plugin as well. Helix Native to be exact. Hogs up all my cpu. But it's no problem if I freeze it after I made my bass tones with it.

Well I'm glad I'm finally done with this.

Really want to thank Pete Kaine for your help. You're truly a hero. Thanks to you I put 2 and 2 together. And thanks to everyone else with the suggestions!
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Re: DESPERATE!! Increasing Audio Dropouts

Postby zenguitar » Fri Sep 07, 2018 12:22 am

And thank you for being a team player and making the effort to let us know the outcome.
:clap:

And now you've found us, feel free to explore the broader forums and join the conversations. As you've seen, we are a friendly and helpful bunch :)

Andy :beamup:
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Re: DESPERATE!! Increasing Audio Dropouts

Postby Pete Kaine » Fri Sep 07, 2018 2:06 pm

Good stuff and glad to hear you've got to the bottom of it all too.

It's always a rather drastic last ditch resort to nuke it all and start again, so always very happy to hear when it turns out well for someone who's been having such nutty problems.
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Re: DESPERATE!! Increasing Audio Dropouts

Postby andy@york » Sun Jan 12, 2020 11:06 am

Hi

I've just found all this advice after struggling (unsuccessfuly) with the same dropout problem for nearly 2 years. Just wanted to say how brilliant it is that you're all willing to put so much effort into helping.

Now I'll start the tedious & confusing job of following your advice. (btw the PC has been returned to Scan for this problem without success (it's a specialist audio machine) & Cubase Support has dug around in my system remotely - again no joy).
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Re: DESPERATE!! Increasing Audio Dropouts

Postby CS70 » Sun Jan 12, 2020 7:05 pm

Hi Andy,

if everything is set up properly (bios, power management, etc) and the interface drivers are half decent, the only thing that can produce dropouts is the fact that for some reason the CPU and I/O subsystem can't process data in the audio buffer fast enough, and so it is still full when new data arrives.

If the PC is specced in a way that it should handle the task, the only conclusion is that something is stealing CPU cycles or, more rarely, I/O bandwidth.

For a system that "used to work" and then doesn't, this is most due to some application which uses a lot of CPU cycles, some driver which has been updated and generates lots of DPC or even some hardware malfunction, which makes so that devices generates many more interrupts that it should. A system corruption can also be an issue, as occasionally drivers may perform operations, like reading the registry, that can quickly become very expensive if the registry is corrupted etc.

That's why a system reinstall sometimes helps.

So when investigating these things, you need to have a look if there's any user level process that uses CPU, then disable methodically all drivers but the minimal ones to see if there's a runaway driver, check for system corruptions and the likes.

Best of luck!
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