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Starise

Minimizing latency using software instruments.

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 I often use a combination of real/software instruments. I don't often have an issue with latency so up until now this post wasn't necessary.

It seems lately the latency on some recent instruments is really bad.

I try to keep my interface set as low as possible which is often in the 4ms range or less. 

Other measures taken are to freeze tracks when I can and make sure nothing else significant is running in the background.

My most recent problem was when I used UJAM IRON . That instrument has a lot more phrases that can latch to the DAW timing. Maybe this had something to do with the problem?

Anything I haven't done here that could improve this?  The plugin in sounds great but the latency is killing me.

Thanks in advance.

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I've had issues with latency (or crackles/pops when the buffer size is anything but massive) with the UJAM Virtual Guitarist synths.

I solved it by enabling JBridge for those synths. I can now run them with a buffer size of 64 (32 at a push). 

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I find as I pile on the plugins , although my PC can deal with it at a low latency setting the latency seems to build up 

i.e. If I need to add a new part using a VSTi when I'm near the end of my mix and I've got say 10 VSTi's & 50 - 60 plugins running ..even though I might be running my buffer at 128 samples , latency is introduced which was not noticable before I adding my mix plugins.  I work around it by disabling the FX , recording my midi part, and re-enabling my FX.

Is this normal ?  As it kinda sucks, I though having a more powerful PC would let me do this without having to disable stuff.  I tried using the PDC button which sort of worked but then all my newly recorded midi notes were out of sync upon playback, even though I played them in time.  

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I have a very powerful machine, an Intel I9 with 24 threads and it is really good at running all kinds of latency rich effects almost boundless but I still need to shut off most of my latency hogs to record a track. All 24 threads barely register at 3% usage when under full load. 

I can run tons of effects with my PC only occasionally dropping out but latency is another thing. It is still a major issue.

Mostly my bus effects need to be disabled, Izotope and FabFilter every time I need to track and set my latency to 6ms or less.

I may be wrong but recording latency is something that really should have its own dedicated engine to handle that process.

If the effects were dedicated to GPU then the processor would be free to handle tracking.

But I am not really that knowledgeable about this kind of thing other than experiencing latency when my effects are on.

Would the CPU be better for handling effects or tracking? I really have no idea other than the fact that my RTX 3090 graphics card is nearly completely idle when I am using Cakewalk.

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2 hours ago, msmcleod said:

I've had issues with latency (or crackles/pops when the buffer size is anything but massive) with the UJAM Virtual Guitarist synths.

I solved it by enabling JBridge for those synths. I can now run them with a buffer size of 64 (32 at a push). 

Good questions above as well. Especially if one has a powerful computer. I'm running a 6 core i7 O.C. and I'm not loading it up. It handles everything else ok. I realize at least some of this has to do with the interface and driver efficiency. I'm using a Focusrite Scarlett for my midi input.

msmcleod are you running heavy mixes and getting these results? So you are running 32 bit versions under JBridge? I would need to reinstall as I don't believe I installed those versions. Thanks.

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the main issue is the latency is set by the worst performing VST/VSTi being used, so if you were to add the same bunch of low latency VSTi and VST, you should not see a significant increase in latency because they're all low. but add something with a lot of latency, now your overall latency needs to be adjusted to accommodate all the other tracks in order to keep in sync. i'm wagering there is little to be done in this regard because of the need to hear stuff in sync and it only gets worse when you're trying to monitor something live while recording. for me, when i'm tracking something live i turn off everything except the bare minimum number of track needed to perform with. all effects off, etc. this way minimal latency. CPU performance etc is nice but doesn't solve it...

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11 hours ago, Starise said:

you are running 32 bit versions under JBridge?

No, I believe you can assign 64 bit plugs to Jbridge as well. Think he’s mentioned this before. Check his profile and run through his posts. 
t

corrected Jbridge not bitbridge. 

Edited by DeeringAmps
Correction
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8 hours ago, Starise said:

Good questions above as well. Especially if one has a powerful computer. I'm running a 6 core i7 O.C. and I'm not loading it up. It handles everything else ok. I realize at least some of this has to do with the interface and driver efficiency. I'm using a Focusrite Scarlett for my midi input.

msmcleod are you running heavy mixes and getting these results? So you are running 32 bit versions under JBridge? I would need to reinstall as I don't believe I installed those versions. Thanks.

My mixes aren't particularly heavy, but I was getting clicks/pops even using a single instance of any of the UJAM Virtual Guitarist range without JBridge.

I'm not using 32 bit versions - JBridge also supports 64 bit to 64 bit.  Using JBridge just forces it to run in its own separate 64 bit process outside of CbB, which seems to cure it. The UJAM products are the only ones that I have to do this with.

I'm also using a Scarlett, so this could be a common factor.  

The only other products I have similar issues with in CbB is any of the Antares VST3 plugins. For those, I just run the VST2 versions.

Many of the iZotope plugins (esp Ozone) also give me grief, but I just avoid them completely unless I'm running them standalone.  In saying that, Nectar seems to be fine.

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23 minutes ago, msmcleod said:

I'm not using 32 bit versions - JBridge also supports 64 bit to 64 bit.  Using JBridge just forces it to run in its own separate 64 bit process outside of CbB, which seems to cure it. The UJAM products are the only ones that I have to do this with.

This give me the impression that there's still something that can be significantly improved in CbB regarding latency. It should be possible for the DAW to allocate a separate process for demanding plugins, especially on PCs with many cores (fortunately quite common these days).

Also, it would be nice if CbB could give a clear overview that shows the latency caused by each plugin in a separate latency monitor window, so you can choose to not use that plugin at a given time or replace it with another one that could provide similar use but without the same heavy latency.

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2 minutes ago, Teegarden said:

This give me the impression that there's still something that can be significantly improved in CbB regarding latency...

This is not the case.

VST's / VSTi's are in-process DLL's, so they run in the same process space as the host (i.e. your DAW).  As such, they have the ability to adversely affect any of the threads the DAW is using if they're not written properly.

Running it in JBridge effectively hides the issue - in other words, it's messing with JBridge's threads instead.

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2 hours ago, msmcleod said:

My mixes aren't particularly heavy, but I was getting clicks/pops even using a single instance of any of the UJAM Virtual Guitarist range without JBridge.

I'm not using 32 bit versions - JBridge also supports 64 bit to 64 bit.  Using JBridge just forces it to run in its own separate 64 bit process outside of CbB, which seems to cure it. The UJAM products are the only ones that I have to do this with.

I'm also using a Scarlett, so this could be a common factor.  

The only other products I have similar issues with in CbB is any of the Antares VST3 plugins. For those, I just run the VST2 versions.

Many of the iZotope plugins (esp Ozone) also give me grief, but I just avoid them completely unless I'm running them standalone.  In saying that, Nectar seems to be fine.

Mark,

 

Thanks for this. I had no idea you could use JBridge for this. I'll give it a try. 

I loaded up other soft synths last evening in another project with no problem, so it seems to me UJAM is a power hungry plugin. I am not drawing samples from my C drive and  was still having the issues. 

Thanks again for chiming in. Very helpful!

-Tim

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The main issue here has nothing to do with your machine, but with developers themselves for the most part. Many assume everyone has enthusiast level hardware and develop targeting that kind of platform. As the hardware increases in performance (in theory), the more plugins need more CPU, more RAM, more cores and so on. Optimizations pretty much don't exist at this point. Eventually, it gets to a point where a piece of software that always ran on your machine fine requires more resources than you have. Then you either upgrade to a better machine, stop using the software altogether or use something else.

Eventually, it gets to that cool point where loading a single plugin can take your entire DAW with it.

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