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sadicus

Synths don't playback

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Posted (edited)

This is not specific to one kind of synth. (in this case it happens to be NI Absynth 5)

The synth played back when the project was saved and closed. Opening the project and the synth is silent.
Open a new instance of the synth and it works as expected. all the routing is the same.
Now 3 instances are in the project, the original two that are useless, and the new instance that works as expected.

 

Edited by sadicus

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Posted (edited)

Troubleshoot 'no sound' as usual, starting in the synth UI, and working downstream (Audio chain) or upstream (MIDI chain), depending on what you find:

- Amp/Monitors are on, volume is up, and sound from some source other than CbB can be heard.

- Hardware Out bus meter in CbB shows signal (drag divider in Console View left if hardware outs are not showing)

- Master Bus meter in CbB shows signal.

- Synth /Instrument track meter shows output.

- Synth/Instrument track Volume is up.

- Synth/Instrument track Gain is up.

- Synth volume,  modulation and expression levels are nominal, and not getting zeroed by 'Zero Controllers on Stop'.

- Soft synth UI audio meter shows signal (may have a virtual keyboard or auditioning function you can use to test)

- A patch is loaded in the soft synth and is compatible with the pitch range in which you’re playing and channel on which your keyboard is sending.

- Soft synth UI shows MIDI input (if it has an indicator).

- MIDI track Output  is assigned to the synth in the rack.

- MIDI track meter shows MIDI output activity.

- MIDI track volume fader is up.

- MIDI track's Input Echo button is lit, either by being enabled manually or automatically by Always Echo Current MIDI Track in preferences (the default).

- MIDI track [output] Channel is  unassigned (no forced output channel; events are passed on keyboard's channel without modification) or matching the synth.

- MIDI clips/lanes are not muted.

- MIDI track records MIDI when you play, whether you can hear the result or not.

- MIDI track's Input is assigned to the port an channel (or Omni) on which your keyboard is sending.

- The recorded notes are in a pitch range that works with the loaded synth patch, and velocities and durations are nominal ( a synth patch with a very slow attack may not respond audibly to a staccato note).

- MIDI I/O activity monitor that CbB inserts in the Windows System Tray shows activity on both sides.

- Keyboard is powered up and MIDI indicator on keyboard (if present) shows activity in response to performing.

- Keyboard output channel matches MIDI track Input channel if not Omni.

 

Edited by David Baay
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Thanks. Hope it helps. There are some more obscure causes of 'no sound', but those are the biggies, and should help find the problem, even if it's not mentioned explicitly.

I'm curious to hear what you find. 

P.S. I should probably add "No tracks/buses soloed". ;^)

 

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I've had times when Absynth 5 does the same thing.  What I found it to be (most of the time) is a CC controller (like Modulation) was triggered somehow.

This has caused it to "reset" resulting in no sound.  I've toggled the preset button to the next one and back the the sound came back.

 

Now, I just add an envelope that keeps the midi control at it's original value (until I'm ready to automate).

Hope it helps.

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Yes, 'Zero Controllers when Play Stops' (mentioned in the list) in MIDI preferences  will do that with synths that use Modulation and/or Expression to control volume (the classic example is Garritan/Aria Player). If you don't want to disable the setting, adding Modulation (CC0) and Expression (CC11) events with nominal values at the start of the track for Cakewalk to ' search back' on will take care of it.

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Add a new instance that works.

Aim the old midi track at the new synth.

Aim the new midi track at the old synth.

This is a quick way to look for the problem. Look for muted anything or solo that excludes the synth.

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Excuse me for borrowing this thread. I just opened a recent project (and couple of other ones to be sure) and get no sound from synths when pressing keyboard keys. Playback works ok however. My keyboard outputs midi just fine and I see midi activity in Cakewalk. Then I inserted a new synth which works fine. I compared the settings and found out that midi inputs must be set to 'none' for correct function. I can't remember I've ever had such an issue. Actually I have never payed any attention for midi input settings as they have always worked without issues. It's not a big thing to switch all inputs to none. But what's going on here?

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Posted (edited)

Always make sure you have input echo turned on (the orange button below) on both the MIDI track and the synth audio track.   Once in a while I also have to arm the synth audio track for recording.  Of course also be sure your MIDI channels and inputs are aimed correctly at the synth and that your outputs are properly assigned.

 

948919254_InputEchoOn.JPG.7db6a678f9a47037aff7cfa4d9896f31.JPG

Edited by BRainbow
spelling

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Doesn't the track always activate 'auto-thru' when selecting a track? A click on the icon  activates the  input echo mode which lets you  select multiple tracks/synths for midi input route.    I usually open a new synth with 'simple instrument track' which creates just one track. This reduces the number of visible tracks and keeps my track view plain and simple. I can then access midi and audio properties in track inpector if required. In case of drum kits I usually have one midi track and 4-5 audio tracks (kick-snare-toms-cymbals-percussion) for tailored processing.

As I  haven't used outboard midi gear for ages I haven't touched midi channels or settings as they have always worked fine. Until now. Which makes me wonder what has changed. It took me a good while to find a way around it. I will keep using the 'none' until I find out what's going on there.

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Same problem here as the original poster:

Re-opened a  *.cwp   a week later and don't get a sound from four out of eight soft synths. Routing used to be fine before.
Corresponding MIDI track output meter shows action, its output is linked to the soft synth, soft synth output meter does not show any activity.
In synth rack the "freeze" button of the failing soft synths are greyed out, the working ones are accessible.
Soloing the track doesn't automatically solo the soft synth.

Synth Rack view:
in Soft Synth Options both the MIDI in and 1st Output are ticked.
The drop-down menu top right of the synth rack shows correctly the associated MIDI input tracks for all soft synth.

 

So here comes the "solution":
======================

 - go to the soft synth track header
 - right-click and chose "Split Instrument Track"
(- the newly generated MIDI track can be deleted)
 - then focus newly generated audio track
 - in inspector go to the "I" (input) dropdown 
   in my case the sound card was ticked instead of the soft synth
   chose the corresponding vst and set output to e. g. "Primary Output: Stereo"

Yes indeed, it is not self-explanatory why you should go to "input" to select an output ...  ;-)

So the problem might start by triggering a "Simple Instrument Track" from another midi track. That appears to work initially but can get corrupted.
Haven't figured out what causes the information loss. Renaming the MIDI track, adding & deleting other soft synths, updating cakewalk ... ? - no idea.

At least we got a clue ...   ;-)

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Why I never use simple instrument tracks,, every attempt in the last ? years has resulted in weird behavior of midi. 

And for those who only use them to keep track count down learn how to use track folders. This is even better as you can do things like have 2 or 3 midi tracks for one instrument like say piano and splitting right and left hand. And drums work really well using track folders.  For me it makes editing or copying parts easier. 

My first reaction to a silent VST is to open the GUI and if it has a playable interface trigger it. Look at the master volume etc. 

Edited by John Vere

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Thanks for the insight John. I have to admit that I have chosen "Simple Instrument Track" because it sounded simple 😉 ... but not exactly the way it originally was intended. Will try to stick to your recommendation.  😌

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4 hours ago, Richie_01 said:

Yes indeed, it is not self-explanatory why you should go to "input" to select an output ... 😉

Same as the physical world - If you have cables coming from the  outputs of several different sound sources, you 'select' the one you want, and plug  it into the input on the mixer.

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