Audio now clicks when volume automation is changed to 0db

Hi, does anyone else experience clicks/pops in the audio when a tracks volume automation is changed from any audible level to 0db? A lot of the time I will want a tracks volume to cut to 0 so I’ll draw in the automation to do that, usually on a beat or bar. Since Cubase 12 whenever I do this it results in a single click or pop occurring at the point of the automation change. Its the same as when you edit an audio file to end midway through a wave cycle and not at the zero point. is there a way to change this behaviour?

Does changing the value for Volume Automation Precision help?

If you change level instantaneously then you’ll get a click (audible if the level difference is large enough). That’s just how the “physics” (“math”) of it works. So best practice is to never do that. To avoid it you’ll have to use cross fades or set your DAW to automatically edit on zero crossings only, and for volume automation you’d need to set it so that you never have an instantaneous jump but always a ramp, even if it’s pretty short.

Thanks! I’ve tried upping it to the maximum of 32, to my ears it seems to be softening the click but not removing it entirely.

Thanks Mattias, the thing is I’m sure it never used to behave this way in previous Cubase versions. I’ve been doing instantaneous volume automation cuts for years and I’m not aware of any clicks but recently they are on everything (so I do a very quick ramp instead). I also get crazy volume jumps when using the loop cycle feature on certain tracks/events.

Double-check preferences? I don’t have any of these problems so I don’t know what the setting would be that changes this. Perhaps the ‘return’ time in the automation window settings tab (for volume automation)?

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I might misremember, but I believe Steinberg improved upon the accuracy of volume automation (the Volume Automation Precision setting is one result of that update) and I would guess that an instantaneous drop of volume is now more accurately rendered with an audible click as a result. In other words, it wasn’t accurate before hence no clicks or pops.

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you’re absolutely right, “instantaneous” volume in previous Cubase versions wasn’t in any way instantaneous. I think it even depended somewhat on the buffer size. In C12 they changed that to sample accurate volume automation (“sample accurate” meaning whatever you configure with the precision setting. The higher, the less precise, but also less cpu usage).

Would be interesting to hear what kind of signal OP is experiencing the
clicks with. i guess that with lower frequency signals with a long wavelength, even 32 samples might lead to some distortion, because the automation then acts as waveshaper.

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This makes sense, I think I remember hearing the same thing and not really understanding what the benefit was. The track I’ve been using to test is a sub bass pulse thing so I think you might be right about the long wavelength being too long for even 32 samples. I’ll do some more testing.

Something interesting I’ve noticed though is that when I draw in these volume automation drops is that the second automation point never snaps fully to the beat, it always has a small ramp. I’ve taken a screenshot to try and demonstrate. You have to zoom in all the way within the arrange window to see it.

Not too sure that any of these settings are what I’m after. I tried changing the return time up and down but the issue was unaffected.

Interesting, I’ve never noticed that. It’s not new to C12 though, the same in C11. It makes sense, of course, as instantaneous volume changes are impossible.

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