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Lombardi

Various issues and problematic Cakewalk behavior

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Okay, first the disclaimer..   I am aware of some of the recent threads here that have been critical of the performance of the Cakewalk DAW.   I have no interest in bitching and piling on.  I just want to get some work done.  I have been an exclusive Cakewalk user since 1986 and couldn't have been more thankful and excited when Bandlab took over and saved me from having to change DAWs.  I have dabbled with others, but it's hard to teach an old dog new tricks and I can get around pretty well in this software, so my desire is to continue here.   That being said, I have been experiencing various anomalies and crashes over the last few months that have me concerned.  

First the crashes.  This has been going on for quite some time and most recently cost me about 6 hours of newly recorded tracks on a project I was working on.  To be clear, it is not project specific and has happened while performing various tasks, not one particular action.  The GUI goes cloudy, the hour glass spins and reports Cakewalk is "not responding".  When I try to close out the program either by closing the window or opening task manager, it asks me if I want to end the process and I make that selection.  Usually the program will shut down.  However, if try to relaunch, it is unresponsive.  If I choose to open the task manager the Cakewalk process remains active, and selecting end process does not work.  My work around has been to open an earlier version of Cakewalk, X2, let it boot and then close it out.  Usually this will allow me to open CbBL again.  Of course my work has been lost, but I am usually pretty meticulous about saving my work frequently, so it's usually not a major inconvenience.  (I stopped using autosave because I thought that was contributing to the problem, since it seemed like it would crash if I was making changes at the same time autosave kicked in.)  At any rate, this has become a PITA.  My setup is not the most up to date or elaborate, but I'm running an older I7 on a Dell Precision laptop with 16 GB of RAM, a MOTU MK2 interface, a Midisport 8/8 midi interface, with my projects and audio files on separate drives.   This configuration worked fine  with Sonar and SPLAT.   None of my projects are all that complex, 16 to 32 tracks with 4 or 5 Vsti 's and some fx and Pro Channel usage.  Any ideas as to what's happening here?

Also, I keep getting audio engine dropout messages (usually error 1), but they happen when the program is idle or if I change from an open web page let's say back to Cakewalk.  I have tried closing out just about every background app with no effect.  Changing the buffer size also seems to have no effect on getting the error message.  I actually tried increasing the buffer size earlier this evening while working on a project and the only effect was to change the key of a True Pianos vsti I had open in the project.  Imagine my surprise when I tried to playback the file and it sounded like this dissonant mess.  By the time I isolated the problem, (one of 22 tracks), I was at a loss as to what to do to get it back to normal.  G minor was no longer G  minor.  In the end I had to delete and re-insert the vsti and all was well.  Bizarre!   Again, changing the buffer size either up or down does not seem to impact the error messages, or for that matter the performance of the DAW in recording or playback.  Any suggestions? 

There are some other things as well, like a project not stopping at its endpoint, and also when selecting to insert a vst into the fx bin of a channel, certain vst's that appear in the recently used portion of the menu do not open, requiring the multiple mouse clicks of finding the particular fx.  But I can live with these. 

Any help or direction to resolve these issues would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks

 

 

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3 hours ago, Lombardi said:

If I choose to open the task manager the Cakewalk process remains active, and selecting end process does not work. 

No need to open X2 to get it to work again. Just open the TASK MANAGER and look for any cakewalk related files besides the main one and end those. 

Also, try removing X2. Your plugins will still work in Cakewalk by Bandlab. 

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8 hours ago, Lombardi said:

I'm running an older I7 on a Dell Precision laptop

 

8 hours ago, Lombardi said:

Also, I keep getting audio engine dropout messages (usually error 1)

On a dell audio dropouts can be caused  by the “Dell SupportAssist Remediation” service, if you haven't already tried this, try disabling the service... That's what us dell users have had to do.

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10 hours ago, Will_Kaydo said:

No need to open X2 to get it to work again. Just open the TASK MANAGER and look for any cakewalk related files besides the main one and end those. 

Also, try removing X2. Your plugins will still work in Cakewalk by Bandlab. 

Yeah, that's just it, when opening the Task Manager, the Cakewalk related services remain and refuse to be ended when selected.  I will try removing the older versions to see if that helps.

Thanks

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3 minutes ago, Lombardi said:

Yeah, that's just it, when opening the Task Manager, the Cakewalk related services remain and refuse to be ended when selected.  I will try removing the older versions to see if that helps.

Thanks

Also keep in mind that Cakewalk isn't very friendly with certain 32bit plugins. 

You might want to update your windows and motherboard drivers frim the manufacturers website to keep things running smoothly. 

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6 minutes ago, Will_Kaydo said:

Also keep in mind that Cakewalk isn't very friendly with certain 32bit plugins. 

You might want to update your windows and motherboard drivers frim the manufacturers website to keep things running smoothly. 

I do have more than a few 32bit plugins...  My drivers and bios are all up to date, including the audio and midi interface.  Thanks

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6 hours ago, Tez said:

 

On a dell audio dropouts can be caused  by the “Dell SupportAssist Remediation” service, if you haven't already tried this, try disabling the service... That's what us dell users have had to do.

As far as I can tell this does not exist on this computer.  It does not appear in the list of running services, nor is there any Dell support app listed in install/uninstall programs.  The only Dell programs listed are Dell Touchpad and Dell ControlVault Host Components.

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4 hours ago, John Vere said:

Have you run Latency Monitor?   https://www.resplendence.com/latencymon

Laptops can be nasty homes for some DAW's. They need more setting up. And that's an older interface are the drivers up to date for your OS? 

I have run the Latency Monitor and it reports that my system "appears suitable to handling real time audio and other tasks without dropouts".   I am not sure what all of the data it reports means, but nothing jumps out at me as peculiar.  And yes all the drivers are up to date.

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Something else you might want to try is going to dell's support site for your particular laptop and update your bios...one would be surprised at how old their bios is and not updating it would cause an updated windows crashes, etc...

Newer bios's helps windows talk back to the hardware, etc. and with drivers to properly work right....

plus I would also make sure all your drivers, windows is updated...

hope this helps..

 

Edited by Einstein R

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My son bought a Dell laptop was a higher end one too, It just never worked for audio. Dell couldn't help him because audio recording is not on their radar. And he's very tech savvy and always builds his own machines but laptops are another animal. If any one could have made it work he could have.  He boiled it down to how the BIOS was set up so this was nothing you could change. 

So He bought a cheap Acer that worked perfectly from day one. He still has both. Laptops are a crap shoot with audio systems. 

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 do have more than a few 32bit plugins..

There is a good chance that this is part of the cause of your instability. Most issues like this are caused by plugin instability. Stop using 32 bit plugins as far as possible.
If the program hangs capture a dump file and send us a link and we can let you know the cause of the hang. Regarding the dropout make sure that you are running the latest version of Cbb since we fixed some spurious dropout messages.

Instructions to capture a dump from a hung program are in my sig.

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2 hours ago, Einstein R said:

Something else you might want to try is going to dell's support site for your particular laptop and update your bios...one would be surprised at how old their bios is and not updating it would cause an updated windows crashes, etc...

Newer bios's helps windows talk back to the hardware, etc. and with drivers to properly work right....

plus I would also make sure all your drivers, windows is updated...

hope this helps..

 

Thanks.  Yes I updated to latest bios yesterday with no appreciable difference in behavior.  All other drivers and windows updates are in order.

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47 minutes ago, Noel Borthwick said:

 do have more than a few 32bit plugins..

There is a good chance that this is part of the cause of your instability. Most issues like this are caused by plugin instability. Stop using 32 bit plugins as far as possible.
If the program hangs capture a dump file and send us a link and we can let you know the cause of the hang. Regarding the dropout make sure that you are running the latest version of Cbb since we fixed some spurious dropout messages.

Instructions to capture a dump from a hung program are in my sig.

Thanks Noel.  I am running the latest CbBL.  I will dig in to the prevalence of 32 bit plugins and try to root out that option.  In the meantime, if I can capture a dump file I will forward it to you.

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1 hour ago, John Vere said:

My son bought a Dell laptop was a higher end one too, It just never worked for audio. Dell couldn't help him because audio recording is not on their radar. And he's very tech savvy and always builds his own machines but laptops are another animal. If any one could have made it work he could have.  He boiled it down to how the BIOS was set up so this was nothing you could change. 

So He bought a cheap Acer that worked perfectly from day one. He still has both. Laptops are a crap shoot with audio systems. 

Yeah, that may be it as well.  Unfortunately, until this Covid thing lightens up and I can get back out to earning a living playing music as I have for the past 50 years, I'm stuck with this...  Thanks for your help.

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You could, if you don't already have, activate "Suspend Audio Engine when Cakewalk is not in focus".

Have you tried to only have Cakewalk open without any other software running. At least you could get a hint if Cakewalk behaves nice under that condition.

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13 hours ago, Kurre said:

You could, if you don't already have, activate "Suspend Audio Engine when Cakewalk is not in focus".

Have you tried to only have Cakewalk open without any other software running. At least you could get a hint if Cakewalk behaves nice under that condition.

Yes, that is selected.  I have tried having only Cakewalk open with the same results.  Thanks

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The drop outs are hideous this has never happened before. I don't come on here too much but thought let me see if anyone else is experiencing the same issues with CBBL?

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7 hours ago, dappa1 said:

The drop outs are hideous this has never happened before. I don't come on here too much but thought let me see if anyone else is experiencing the same issues with CBBL?

After exhausting all the suggestions posted here, (most of which I had already tried) with no apparent change, I decided to rescan all my vst folders and also installed a new ssd drive to replace the mechanical boot drive in my laptop.  I don't want to jinx myself, but so far I have not been having dropouts over the last couple of sessions.  That being said, I have had other issues relating to the audio snap feature (I have never had any  real success with that feature) and some weird midi behavior where overdubbing new parts to an existing track results in the new midi being way out of sync with the original.  I haven't had the time to really dig into it, but I may be making a separate post regarding that.

  • Thanks 1

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19 hours ago, Lombardi said:

installed a new ssd drive to replace the mechanical boot drive in my laptop

Beat me to it. I was going to suggest that if you still had the original spinny drive in a laptop that's old enough to have SONAR X2 on it, that you might run some in-depth fault tests on it. My guess is that crumbling drive was the issue. If the update had anything to do with it, it might be that installing it wrote to a section of the drive that had funky clusters but hadn't been used before.

Well done, sir.

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