too much latency with midi?

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by tristan, Nov 17, 2005.


  1. tristan

    tristan Member

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    hey all, just bought bfd, awesome program!!!

    anyway i have way too much time between when i hit a midi key on my keyboard and when i actually hear it or the computer hears it.

    is there any way i can decrese this? my local music store owner said its windows, not my hardware.

    btw i have pentium 4 2.8
    1 gig ram
    80 gig hd.
    onboard sound, no sound card.

    also i usually just plug my mic into a beringer mixer into my mic input on my motherboard. then record using sonar or cakewalk. the sound to me is ok but will something like an mbox improve my sound? is protools easier to use than sonar?

    cheers all!!

    tristan
     
  2. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    Does your keyboard have a USB or Midi interface?

    Lots of soundcards and systems have considerable latency. Lots don't, however. Some software has automatic latency compensation, i.e., the software makes sure everything is lined up time-wise. Digital Performer, and to some degree, Logic, have this. I'm not sure about others.

    Here's what I use with my Mac G4 powerbook and G5 iMac (I took my old G4 tower machine to the office, I LOVE the G5 iMac), and the hardware and some software is cross-platform, ie, will work with windows:

    Midi Interface: 2 MOTU MTP AVs (USB to computer, Midi to outboard gear)

    Midi controller: M-Audio Keystation 88 (currently using USB connection)

    Audio Interface: MOTU Traveler (firewire interface)

    Software:

    Digital Performer 4.61 (not cross-platform)
    Waves Plug-ins
    MOTU FX/Dynamics Plug-ins
    Arturia Moog V
    MOTU Symphonic Instrument
    MOTU Mach 5 sampler
    Spectrasonics Stylus
    Spectrasonics Atmosphere
    Crystal

    Midi Hardware:

    Synths/Samplers - various pieces of gear
    Effects - various (I call up presets via midi instead of squinting into little windows on rack gear)

    The MOTU Traveler feeds my analog console. I submix some "stems" in the computer, and then do my final mixes on the console. I use the automation in DP.

    No audible latency with this system.
     
  3. tonefreak

    tonefreak Member

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    I have BFD and love it as well!! I need to get those extension packs!!!

    I run a P4 3.2 with 1 GB RAM, two hard drive (one for music the other for OS), blah, blah blah

    I run MBox (orginal) with PT 6.9 and now PT 7. For a midi interface, I use M-Audio 2x2 midiSport. I don't get those the latencies you describe... in fact, if there is a latency, I can't tell.

    NOTE: I use two Mackie 1202 VLZ Pros to create a totally latency free recording environment without using the computers CPUs resources!!
     
  4. Jo

    Jo Silver Supporting Member

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    Er... what's BFD?:confused:
     
  5. elambo

    elambo Member

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    If you're using an MBox or other host-based recorder (so far everyone in this thread is), there's latency. No way around that because it takes time for the CPU to process the data. Maybe you have it set at its fastest setting, which can be pretty quick.

    On PLAYBACK, there are some programs that will compensate for the latency, but that's not possible when playing live.

    Tristan - I'm more of a Mac guy for audio, but please ignore your local music store "experts" who said that Windows is to blame - your sound card is more likely causing you the trouble. Many people use "Windows" with great sound cards and very little playback delay. In any case, there's probably something you can do: check your sound card's buffer size (not sure where it would be - maybe the control panel for the card, or the general audio panel) and set it to a lower buffer size. It could also be in the BFD application itself. Maybe someone else can offer Windows help in this area...
     
  6. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    A lot of it will be the buffer size adjustment. Then again, some cards have more latency than others.

    Some software does, too.

    For example, my son uses an M-Audio box as his "soundcard" with his Powerbook running DP and has some latency. I use a MOTU traveler with my Powerbook and have almost none, and this is running the same buffer size. We haven't yet figured out this discrepancy, but it isn't too bad on his machine, so he lives with it.

    Go figure.
     
  7. elambo

    elambo Member

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    Do you and your son have the same type of Powerbook (CPU speed, OS, memory)? Could that be the culprit?

    You're right - some cards will process audio faster than others. And in the early days of USB/Audio, there were latency problems inherent in some USB implementations. All of the newer stuff I'm familiar with is snappity quick, but I do remember a few boxes from a few years ago that were frighteningly slow/delayed.

    Tristan - what brand of computer are you using, or if you put it together yourself what type of motherboards did you use? Although there's no sound "card" per se, there's still a sound processor - it's merely built in to the motherboard - and could possess a noticeable, but adjustable delay.
     
  8. gomez1856

    gomez1856 Member

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    Joe,

    BFD is a fantastic drum sample application for DAW's. Extremely realistic and infinitely configurable, but very resource intensive. Argueably, one of the best drum apps on the market.

    Website


    Rick
     
  9. tristan

    tristan Member

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    Location:
    Darwin, Australia!
    hey all

    sorry for my latency (sorry i had to do it) in replying. i am now convinced its not windows.

    i just want to know the cheapest way of fixing my probs.

    maybe if i get a soundcard such as a creative soundblaster 2zs with ASIO 2.0 support it will kill my latency?

    i dont think i need a midi interface as my evolution keyboard is usb, unless i plug it into one to lessen my latency??


    cheers!
     
  10. tristan

    tristan Member

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    Location:
    Darwin, Australia!
    so do you guys think this will solve/help my problem?
     

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