Aggregating multiple ASIO drivers

Hi, I use the Yamaha TF1 as my main audio interface. I need to do some DI recording/reamping with an external piece of signal processing gear (Line 6 Helix), which comes with its own ASIO driver and is connected via USB. Unfortunately, I can only select one ASIO driver in Cubase. Is there any way to keep the TF1 driver as my “main” ASIO driver, and then just select one of the inputs from the Line 6 Helix ASIO driver so I can record a DI signal from that device?

Does ASIO4ALL do this sort of thing, and if so, is it stable? I’m really hesitant to put another piece of software into my digital signal processing chain, so I’d much rather have a Cubase-native option.

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Yes, this is the way on Windows.

Doesn’t it provide a VST plug-in?

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Thanks, I thought that ASIO4ALL was the ticket here. I’m still a little hesitant since I worry about stability and latency, but perhaps others can chime in and share their experiences with ASIO4ALL.

@Martin.Jirsak Regarding the Helix plug-in: I have an actual hardware Helix unit, but they do offer a plugin as well (which I don’t have, and don’t want to pay for since I own the hardware)


Stability is OK as far as I know. The latency is not the best in comparison to the dedicated drivers.

Thanks. The latency issue is likely going to be a dealbreaker. I’ve worked very hard to build a system that has a small enough latency to be below the threshold of human perception so that I can do vocal recordings that I can monitor through the DAW vocal chain.

Plan B is to try to route the Helix DI signal to an input on my audio interface and capture that signal in the analog domain instead of digitally via their ASIO driver.


As far as I know, the human perception is around 10ms.

There’s no need to try to get latency down so low as long as your audio interface has its own front-end mixer app (and you don’t monitor via Cubase/Direct Monitoring). For instance I use an RME interface that comes with TotalMix = zero latency monitoring. Latency is of absolutely no consequence.

But I wouldn’t use ASIO4ALL - too flakey.


Yep, and that’s the latency of my current setup, so I’m really sensitive as to that not going up by inserting ASIO4ALL into my processing chain.

Ah, good to know about the flakiness of ASIO4ALL. Between that and the additional latency, I’ll skip that “solution” and go with routing things in the analog domain between the Helix hardware and Cubase via my TF1.

You are absolutely right about direct monitoring, and my digital mixing board (TF1) offers that. The issue is that this means the vocalist can’t hear the processing that occurs in the Cubase vocal chain via insert effects, and that’s important so that the performer can “sing into” the effects. Having things like a comfort reverb from the digital mixer won’t be sufficient in that case since many performers are (rightfully) very demanding of being able to adjust their vocal performance to the specific vocal chain that ends up getting used in the track.

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I hear you re the additional cost of the plugin, but the combination of the Helix hardware with the Native plugin is a hugely capable system, much more so than the sum of it’s parts. Adding Native to my Helix set up has been a total game changer.

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Not sure if I’m missing something here, but the Helix already provides the DI signal when you use it as an audio interface. IIRC, the input channels USB 7 and 8 carry the DI signal…check the Helix manual, topic DI-recording and re-amplification. If you use the Helix that way, you’ll also have no latency issues while recording.

I already have an audio interface (Yamaha TF1) that I’m using for studio connectivity (32 channels in / 32 channels out) which uses its own ASIO driver, so switching to the Helix ASIO driver wouldn’t work for me since I would lose the connectivity to the rest of my studio :slight_smile: hence my original ask of aggregating ASIO drivers.

Oh, that’s really interesting to hear! I thought it to be a complete waste of money to buy a plugin that the hardware already does. Can you tell me more about how this has been a game changer for you? Line 6 tends to have sales on the plug in, so if this indeed provides me with capabilities I haven’t thought of yet, I just might buy it too!

The hardware is fine when it’s needed, but I use the Helix plug-in more often with Cubase. You can swap patches between the hardware and software.

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Ah, got it. Our setups differ. I have the Helix main outs connected to the inputs of my main audio interface, they pick the signal up no matter if I switch ASIO drivers. So for recording from the Helix I switch to the Helix USB driver but still can listen through my main interface.

Sure, I record all guitars and basses (and anything else that gets put through the Helix) as both a dry DI and the patch from the Helix hardware, whilst enjoying zero latency monitoring off the hardware of course. Then I can copy the same patch used for the hardware into Native and insert it on the DI track and use it as a starting point for any reworking of the parts. I can do this with multiple guitar tracks, then instead of having to reamp and print each track one by one, I can tweak all the “reamps” from multiple instances of HX Native, working on on all tracks together whilst mixing. The hardware unit can be used as a real time controller to automate the plugins, and I can swap the patches back and forth between hardware and Native just with Copy and Paste. If I need to configure a live rig I just port the finalised patches over from the plugins to the hardware and tweak as necessary for different outputs etc.

Along with the DI I can record any parameter changes from the Helix hardware as MIDI data, so for instance if I’m using a volume pedal, wah or any other EXP that data is editable in Cubase + can be used to control the Native plugin too. So if I want to tighten up the timing of swells, tame a heavy footed wah or rebalance a delay mix it’s a breeze. If I’m turning stomps on + off or changing patches that too can be recorded and edited later if needed.

Finally the HX Native for a registered hardware device user costs about 10-15% of the cost of the hardware. For that extra 10-15% you basically get a rack full of Helixes all linked to the hardware as a controller. In a big project I can be running a couple of dozen DI tracks each with a separate instance of Native on. and I don’t have to print the sounds until the mix is fully finalised.

I’ve got my Helix audio out connected to my digital mixing board/audio interface as well, but once I switch to the Helix ASIO driver, I lose the connectivity to the rest of my studio, for example the studio monitors connected to my main audio interface. So I could still listen to the audio from the Helix, but since I switched away from the main audio interface ASIO driver, I now can’t hear the rest of the tracks coming from the stereo out of Cubase. Am I missing something?

Thank you so much for the detailed answer, really appreciated! The ability to have seamless patch compatibility between the Helix hardware and the native plugin is indeed a great feature, and makes reamping and editing super easy! Lots of great tips in your answer, and I think you’ve convinced me to buy the native Helix plugin and incorporate it into my workflow. Two questions:

(1) Does the native plugin add any latency to Cubase? Right now, my latency is around 10 milliseconds, which is below the perceptual threshold, meaning I can run, say, a vocal chain and monitor it natively all within Cubase.

(2) Do you use Helix as your audio interface? If so, then getting both the DI and processed signal from the Helix ASIO driver is easy, but my problem is that I use the ASIO driver for my main audio interface (TF1) that connects to the rest of my studio, so I’d have to resort to modifying each Helix patch on the hardware to sending the DI signal to one of the aux outputs of the Helix hardware and connect that to my TF1 so I can record that DI signal too.

I’ve set it up this way: I’ve created presets in the audio connections window for inputs, outputs and control room. One preset for the main audiointerface and one for the Helix. If I switch to the Helix ASIO driver, I change the presets in the audio connection window accordingly.

I set up the inputs for the Helix DI being input 7 and the inputs for the Helix’s left + right outputs to input 1 and input 2 on the respective tracks in Cubase.

The Helix’s main outs are connected to the main audiointerface. Now if the Helix ASIO driver is selected, the Helix is the interface Cubase uses. Every sound the Helix produces goes out to the main interface’s inputs via Helix’s main outs.

The main interface works regardless if its ASIO driver is selected in Cubase or not, it picks up the incoming signal from the Helix (and in this case from Cubase, cause the Helix is the Cubase audio
interface now) via the Helix’s outputs.

That way everything played back in Cubase and routed to the Helix can be listened to via the main interface.

When I’m done with recording guitar, I switch back to the main audiointerface’s ASIO driver and
change the presets in the audio connection window accordingly.

Unfortunately this can’t be done via a macro, that would make it a tad less convoluted. It isn’t as complicated as it sounds, though.

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This is a really clever setup, and one that just might work for me! Thanks again, I’m going to try this out…