MUSIC, AMBIENCE AND SOUND ART > Music Gearheads Tech Talk

If you use Cubase on a Mac...can you help? :)

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Gemini Ambience:
Well this weekend I'm still not connected fully; not sure what I'm missing or not doing. I couldn't get the routing to work when I had the Mackie controller hooked up, so I simply ditched it and now have the following configuration:

Audio interface/Mixer:  M-Audio NRV10
MIDI interface:  M-Audio Midisport 4x4
Sequencer: C4
Synths: Yamaha AN1x & Access Virus A

Here's all I've been able to do so far...and I think I'm "almost there"...but still encountering some weirdness:

1. Installed the NRV10 on to my Mac. In the Audio/MIDI devices section of the System Preferences, I have the NRV10 as my audio input/output device set to the main "multichannel" configuration.

2. Connected the AN1x and the Virus to the 4x4 according to the quick card instructions (AN1x OUT to the 4x4 IN / 4x4 OUT to the AN1x IN : Virus OUT to the 4x4 IN / 4x4 OUT to the Virus IN).

3. In Cubase I created a 2-stereo bus template so I have two Input busses coming from the two stereo channels on the NRV10 (5/6 for the AN1x and 7/8 for the Virus) into Cubase. I've followed the C4 manual's instructions on connecting external gear and both synths show up in the VST connections panel as well as in the VST instruments rack as external VST's.

I know I need to set up the MIDI control chain...but not sure how to do it. I'm assuming that C4 needs to be the MIDI master and time source, but I'm not sure how to do this. I'm about to start going through the synth manuals to set them up to be slaves to Cubase...but again, this is all new to me and while I think I understand the connections/routings...I must be doing something wrong yet.

I have 2 audio tracks and 2 midi tracks open in Cubase to control and record from the synths. And while the routing is correct on the mixer, I'm not sure if they're correct in general.

The one puzzle I'm not sure about, too, is latency. When I start playing the AN1x (which I have set as the midi input for both synths) I get instant playback from the AN1x. When I solo the Virus track, however, and start playing the AN1x...I've documented the lag to be 56 seconds from the time I press a key and actually get sound back from the Virus. Any suggestions as to what I'm missing or doing incorrectly?

I haven't even tried recording yet since this lag is wigging me out a bit.

If anyone has any advice...I'm all ears. I'm still reading through the manuals...but as of this post, I'm still kind of stuck.

If anyone is in Philly and would be willing to swing by at some point during the week or next weekend, that would be more than appreciated!

Now I need to see if I can return the Mackie...

I don't use Cubase or a mac. So things may be different.

You should find that when you send midi time code from Cubase to the synths that they automatically sync to it. Otherwise there will be an internal or external sync option in the synths.  You can test the synths using an arpeggiator patch, which should speed/slow with different timings of Cubase.

Somewhere in Cubase is the option to send Midi Time Code  (MTC). You just have to make sure its going out the correct midisport ports.

Midi is a thing that can be routed many ways.

You could, for example, have the midi Out from the AN1x go straight to the Virus midi In, then the Virus midi Thru goes to Cubase if you want to record the midi. That way the Virus is sure to be playing at the same time as the AN1x. Should not be any latency. It simplifies things.

Gemini Ambience:

Thank you very much for your input. I was even going to try re-routing the MIDI to make it one large loop, and not two loops like the quick start guide suggested.

I'll get back to you once I can try the new set-up tomorrow after work.


Gemini Ambience: I got a call today from my Sweetwater sales rep, Mark.

Long story short, all 3 pieces of gear I got are returnable and I can get either a refund or replace gear at less or equal price. So that being the case, we discussed my basic set-up and what I'd like to achieve. He's going to do some research and get back to me with some options...but i have 24 days left til the return window expires on all 3 pieces of gear.

I'm really glad he called; I emailed him yesterday asking if I could return the Mackie.

So hopefully by the end of this week we'll have found a solution to get my studio completely integrated and operational. I've also looked around Sweetwater to see what gear options are available...and I found one unit that does all 3 of the functions that my current set of 3 items do independently:

Audio and MIDI interfaces built-in, digital mixer, and control surface for Cubase. And it leaves a refund of $1,349.94 to the account, which is definitely good to contemplate.  lol

So hopefully it'll be another week or two til I've gotten the set-up taken care of. But at least I'm making forward progress.  hehe

Will keep you updated. It's definitely a learning process for me...but one I'm enjoying.  :)


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