Audio setup

Hi. This is my first post. I’m hoping I this forum will be a source of answers for me. I’ve been using Cubase for years now, but finally decided to seek answers at the forums.

So, the first thing I’m wondering…

The setup I currently have is an i7 PC with a Layla3G rackmount unit and a set of desk speakers. I’m using AfterEffects and various other FX/animation programs, along with Cubase7. I have the system sounds deactivated, and AfterEffects is currently set at 48.000kHz.

The way I currently have the audio hardware set up, is I have regular RCA cables coming from the back of my PC (RealTek integrated audio card, I believe) going to the speakers directly. I also have the Layla rackmount unit plugged into the PC (proprietary cable into the Layla3G card installed in the PC case), and 1/4" audio cabled going from the 1and2 analog outs of the rackmount, and merging into the RCA cables from the back of the PC via Y cables, before the Y cable then goes (as a single set) into the desk speakers.

The reasoning for this is that I did not want the Layla on all the time, as I rarely do midi stuff, and didn’t want to unnecessarily wear out the Layla while I wasn’t using it. So, having the two inputs (PC and Layla) merging into the desk speakers was my solution, which worked fine. (Yes, I know it’s not at all ideal, but I use internal VST instruments, and am not critical about optimal sound while I’m working on non-midi PC things. I’m only able to have one set of speakers, so this is all I can do for now).

So, recently, I fired up Cubase (after a long absence from it). It had recently been updated to the latest version of the 7 series, and this was the first time I had fired it up after the update. I had also transferred Cubase from another PC, as well.

So, what I found now, is that I’m very confused about the audio setup within Cubase (and AfterEffects). Although it seemed to be working before, it’s giving me grief now. What I WANT is for Cubase to spit out the audio to the Layla3G 1and2 analog output (as I had previously), and have AfterEffects simply spitting out its audio to the back of the PC (and not through the Layla)… but it seems now it insists on it, and the two can’t seem to coexist.

In Cubase, I have the output set to Layla’s 1and2 outputs, but now AfterEffects is silent. I’ve set AE to a variety of different settings, but none seem to work now… as if Cubase is overpowering it or something.

At first, I thought it might be a conflict in sample rate, but it seems both are set to 48kHz, if I’m reading things correctly.

AE was working fine a minute ago, but since I started using Cubase today, it is silent.

I know this situation involves AE and the Layla, in addition to Cubase… but I’m hoping I might get some guidence on how to set things up properly… be it just in Cubase, or (if anyone is familiar with either of the other two items), the others… as I figure there might be.

I confess, even though I’ve used Cubase and other midi programs for most of my life, I’m overwhelmed by the number of controls and settings… and the long absence from Cubase, plus the slight changes in things with the latest update, have me feeling very lost.

I hope someone here can help. Please be merciful!

hello LAdlon! This is my first post too and i have i5 with Gina3G and Mia MIDI as one audio interface. Go to “Device Setup -> VST Audio System” in Cubase. Choose your “ASIO Echo PCI” driver and then activate “Release Driver when Application is in Background” option. Set 44100 kHz everywhere (Layla console, Cubase, AfterEffects, Realtek in win audio pref.) reboot and never feeling very lost! :slight_smile:

Hi Lfee. Thanks for the response.

Ya, everything is set to 48kHz by default. Is it really correct/ideal for me to set everything to 44100? What’s the reason for this?

I managed to restore the audio in AfterEffects (although, I’m not entirely sure exactly how, as I was trying all kinds of combinations between the AE audio settings, the Windows audio settings, and the Layla settings.

What I’ve still found, is that it doesn’t seem to allow me to pipe the audio of Cubase and AfterEffects through the same Layla3G output for some reason. I kind of need that, as I need a means to merge the various audio (PC and Layla) to a single set of speakers. I tried setting both Cubase and Windows (and AE) to all send audio to the 1and2 Layla output, but it seems that as soon as you set one, that output is excluded from the list in the settings of the other. Not sure why it wouldn’t let you send multiple sources to a single output… and, again, that’s kind of the whole point, since I can only attach 1 set of physical cables to the speakers.

I’m not sure who to ask… If I contact Adobe, they will say their product has nothing to do with Layla or Cubase, and that I should contact them. If I contact Layla (…can you even DO that?), they will tell me to ask one of the others. That’s the problem with questions about the interaction between several pieces of hardware/software.

Just too many damn controls… The signal routing and options alone, through the layla, AfterEffects, Windows and Cubase, is just mind boggling. Even something as simple as the Windows audio setup (Realtek, in my case) seems overly complex in its options, and I find myself crying out for just a single input, output and volume control! I totally understand the need for all the options and alternate settings, but sometimes you just want A to B. It woud be great if you could optionally bypass all these optional settings/routings.

I realy wish I knew where to go to get advice and guidence on the whole setup. I’m generally very technically minded, but I’ve met my match with all this audio routing. :frowning:

Lfee is right. Have you followed his advice? Only one programme can access your sound card’s ASIO driver at a time and you willl need to tick “Release Driver when Application is in Background” option as he describes to get Cubase to “let go” of it.

Hi, guys. Yes, I’ve checked the ‘release to other programs’ box. Looks like it got unchecked, or wasn’t checked when I installed it on the other machine. I suspect that will probably solve that one issue with the outputs being unavailable. Makes sense! Thanks for that!

Sorry, my whole post is a bit of a jumble… it’s hard to really put in words the various things I’m trying to sort out with the setup… again, partially because of the complexity of the combined options, and partially because things were updated and changed. Add to all that, the fact that I moved from Kontakt4 to Kontakt5… so now many of the instruments and effects of my existing projects are no longer there… so, it’s unfortunately a large combo of various things making for a very confusing rats nest to sort through for me.

I’m trying to isolate the questions as best as I can, so they are not so vague… but often I’m not sure where the issue starts from, or if it’s only one or more of the programs that are contributing. Often, it’s a case of either something not working, and being confused as to where the issue may be, or simply being overwhelmed by the number of settings and options, and losing track of the general overview of the setup. Sorry for not being able to be more specific and clear. Your patience and understanding are much appreciated!

I’ll fire up Cubase at some point again, and see where I’m at now.

Yep, it was that checkbox, as far as AE and Cubase not being able to share the same port. Simple and makes sense. Sorry I didn’t notice that before. I had it checked before, but I guess it is unchecked by default, and got reset when I reinstalled it or updated.

Okay, cool. Now to untangle the rest of the rat’s nest… It’s scary how foreign Cubase is to me, after only a short absence.

Can anyone suggest someplace to go for overall setup questions? In an ideal world, I’d have someone whose knowledgable in the software and hardware and setups overall, take a look at my setup, tell me how they would do it, show me what settings to keep at default, what to change, how to optimize what I have, and point out the controls and routing that are relevant to what I’m doing, and what I can ignore. If I win the lottery, I’ll be sure to hire someone to do just that, but until then, I have to somehow sort through it myself, hopefully with the help of someone online or something… or a good book or website on the subject?

Just so many settings… :slight_smile:

Damn… Spoke too soon.

It was working, but it appears that when I use AfterEffects, Cubase loses the output channels again.

It seems that it works one way, but not the other direction. Cubase can be set to let go of the output channel when AfterEffects wants it, but I believe AfterEffects does not give it up when I use Cubase. There doesn’t appear to be a way (in AE) to set it to release the output, like Cubase has.

Is there some setting in Windows overall that does this?

I’ve been also trying to have the physical audio output from the back of the PC wired into one of the inputs of the Layla3G, then route that to the output that is physically wired to the speakers (rather than the PC audio being directly routed to that output)… but, no luck. I can’t even seem to distinguish which output the back ones are in the Windows/RealTek control panel to route the audio in the first place.

Anyone able to help?

Oh, I think I got it… Deep within the settings of the Windows/RealTek audio options was an Advanced section with a checkbox about allowing programs exclusive control of the device, and another giving ‘exclusive mode applications priority’… I unchecked both, and that SEEMS to have done the trick… for now.

Did I mention I feel there’s way too many controls?.. I did, didn’t I. :slight_smile:

Nope, it was good for a while, then Cubase lost the output again.

Almost seems like some event/action in AE will trigger it, even with Windows (seemingly) set up to not give any program exclusive use.

Here’s what I know so far:

I set Windows to have the Layla3G Analog 1and2 output as the default audio output (if I’m understanding the controls properly), and I have the ‘Allow apps to take exclusive control’ unchecked. Playing audio in Windows works.

I boot up AfterEffects, and (among a few other options) I can either have the Audio Mapping set to After Effects WDM Audio using the Layla 1and2 outputs, or ASIO Echo PCI using Layla 3and4 outputs. (Which should I use?) Playing audio in AfterEffects currently works if I have it set to AE WDM audio (as well as the Audio Hardware set to AE WDM Sound, rather than the Echo ASIO option).

I boot up Cubase, and it tells me that my default output is now unmapped (Layla output 1and2 are ‘missing’), and will not show 1and2 as an option when I try and remap it (only the other outputs, starting from 3). No audio from Cubase now (but AE and Windows still work).

To add to the weirdness, I just was playing around with the settings and things, and when I had a Quicktime movie playing on the Windows desktop, and then switched over (gave focus) to Cubase, the playback of the QT suddenly slowed down! Sample or playback rate? Everything is set to 48kHz, as far as I can see.

No idea…

For those following along…

At this point, it seems that the main issue (among others) is that there is a sample rate conflict within the single machine… Everything is set to 48kHz, but playing a QT movie, for example, probably knocks the global (Layla?) clock to 44.1kHz.

From my discussions with some techs, it seems this is a common issue that even huge studios face.

The Layla is set to 48kHz (as is AfterEffects), yet the Layla is also (currently) showing a sample rate of 44.1kHz. I’m not sure if it WAS at 48kHz, and got knocked down, or never was at 48kHz to begin with (despite being set to 48kHz).

I’ll have to see what Cubase is set at… as soon as I can remember where the recording sample rate settings are.

There may be other issues here… as Cubase is (again) currently not allowing me to use outputs 1and2 (even though it was allowing it for quite a while before). Again, maybe the change in sample rate suddenly caused the outputs to not be available? This is all way beyond my abilities, but so far, it seems all the theories I came up with have been verified to be correct (according to the techs)… so, at least I’m thinking right. :slight_smile:

Another clue… I discovered that the sample rate of the Project Settings in Cubase was set to 44.1kHz. Ah! Okay, that should at least be a step in the right direction.

Further tests… Everything was working great, until I played a Quicktime movie. I’m told that the player is probably using a lower rate than the 48kHz set for everything else. When I play it, both Cubase and AfterEffects go quiet. Looking deeper, it seems that the audio routing in AE also gets changed (…output previously going to Layla outputs 1and2 are now routed to outputs 3and4… So, it looks like the sample rate discrepency causes AE and Cubase to automatically disconnect the current (1and2) outputs, and reroute it to the next available one (3and4)… which are not hooked up to anything… hence, silence. Or, so my theory goes.

I’ve found that QT can be configured to use a 48kHz rate, so I’ll see how that works now.

Annoying thing is, once the damage is done (programs are rerouted), there seems to be no way to get it back, other than shut everything down.

Most film material is in 48Khz format, so activating QT or AE wil force the hardware into 48Khz, switching back to Cubase switches it to 44.1Khz. Many times switching can leave the audiodriver or hardware in an error state giving you all kind of strange behaviour.

Yep, that seems to be what’s happening here. I set everything (QT, AE, Cubase, etc) to 48kHz. Seems to be happy right now. I’ll see how it progresses. Thanks!