Cubase 11 Waves v12 plugins not loading


I have upgraded to Cubase 11 Pro. All thirdparty plugins work fine.
However the Waves V12 plugins I have purchased are visible, but do not load.
Using Cubase 10.5 they were loading ok. No issues.

According to Waves V12 is compatible with Cubase 11 and 10.5 Supported Hosts | Support | Waves

I have uninstalled all Waves plugins using the latest Waves Central 12.0.19 version; reinstalled and activated using the procedure I found and pasted below.

Still the issue exists. All Waves v12 plugins do not load.

Has anyone experienced this problem as well with Cubase 11 and Waves V12?

OS is Win 10, 64 bit, latest build 19042.985
Processor Intel(R) Core™ i7-6700HQ CPU @ 2.60GHz 2.59 GHz
RAM: 16 GB

I am running out of ideas howto fix the problem.
Hints and resolutions very welcome!

thanks and regards

— complete uninstall and reinstall waves plugins -----

Once the license is sent choose: Install->Uninstall Products (at the top). Das ist jetzt unter „Settings“
Choose all the products click ‘Uninstall’.
Once uninstall is finished - quit Central.

Uninstall Central :

Uninstall Waves Central itself using Control Panel->Programs and Features

Remove Various files:
Click on Winkey+R and enter the text %appdata% - click Enter. Delete the Waves folder inside ‘Roaming’.
Click on Winkey+R and enter the text %programdata% - click Enter. Delete the ‘Waves Audio’ folder.
Conduct a file search on your system for the term :“WaveShell” and delete any “WaveShell” file that you find.

Did you try the license verify and refresh procedure?

Have you contacted Waves support?

same here. I guess it´s Waves silly copy protection, which shuts down the plugins, as soon as you plug in an USB Stick or update your Wifi drivers. All of the troubleshooting advice on their homepage is useless. The only other solution they offer is to have a teamviewer session with their tech support.
When I cannot fix such a problem by myself, I cannot trust waves plugins any longer and therefore will stop using them. The next shutdown is right around the corner…

having the same issue. It happened to me last week randomly in the morning the next day after everything was initialising perfectly previously. That same day I updated to the latest version of Cubase Pro 11 & waves central, but these updates were done AFTER the problem started.

It appears that when Cubase tries scanning my VST3 plugins it hangs up on scanning the file Waveshell5 VST10.0 & gives me the waves license engine is missing error.

I have opened a ticket with Waves, telling them i had already tried a fresh installation of everything, including central, and got a half baked reply saying to delete files & reinstall V12 plugins. It seems it is V10 that is the problem. Im starting to feel this is a Waves attempt to force people to update to 12. Not having any of it.

I have never known any plugin developer that charges for compatibility upgrades, and if they dont provide a fix, I will just uninstall their dated plugins forever & never buy anything from them again. a grand down the tubes on Waves plugs, unless i pay over £200 for WUP? no thanks!

I’ll just replace their buggy crap with Plugin Alliance stuff that actually works & dont squeeze you for paid compatibility updates


So i had a couple of Waves 12 licenses so was eligible for VIP support. Had a Waves tech support guy remote in to my machine to take a look.

It seemed to be the Waveshell5 VST10.0 initialisation that was causing error messages saying “Waves License Engine is missing. Please restore” in my case.

Turned out the issue in my case was that C++ redistributables needed restoring / updating. After he took care of that & rebooted, alll my Waves stuff started working again. The tech support guy said they have had to deal with this issue a lot since a recent Windows update.

Hopefully this will help OP or anyone else having this issue recently.


THANKKKKKK YOU for your post. Thank you very much for sharing it.
I had lost two days, trying to install different Waves versions, trying to do similar things shown on ytb videos, unsuccessfully. And thinking about format my PC, and preparing myself for spending not less than 20-30 hours reinstalling allll.
At the end, reading your post, with 100% all sense about the problem that it was happening for me too, the solution was to remove all the MSoft redistributables, and to install only the one needed.

Thank you

1 Like

Hey guys, thank you for all the posts!

I have the same problem with all my Waves v12 Plugins not opening in Cubase Elements 10.0.60 running on Windows 10 (updated to the latest version). Non of them are opening although everything is correctly installed, updated and all the licenses are activated.

triumphspeedmaster can you pleas tell us which MS Redistributables are “the one needed” to make the Plugins work again exactly?

Thank you in advance and kind regards.

Hello Band_Recording,
All :wink:
In my case I had about 12-14 MSoft different versions, for the last 8 years. I suppose that most of the software we have at our computer could resolve most of the API MSoft calls versus the last redistributable version available so, I removed all of them and after there is to reinstall eLicenser, Cubase, and your Waves. At the installation process they install the redistributable they need. If you “brake” other software different than theese three due to the redistributable deinstallation, you only have to look for the one it needs and install it.

This problem comes due to Microsoft, they have changed something on some Windows 10 update. Or may be the problem is that Waves it should be programmed on a different way, and this problem we have had it is an example of it.

Kind regards,

To anyone having the same issue:

You don’t need to uninstall all the MS C++ Redistributables! I refused to do so, because I didn’t want to install Cubase, the E-Licenser, and Waves Central again, just to step by step install all the Redistributables that are necessary. So I just downloaded a package of all the MS C++ Redistributables from techspot. com (I can’t post links here…)

It includes a batch file that will install all those MS C++ Redistributables at once. And what can I say… It works again! I didn’t even have to restart my PC. I opened Cubase and loaded the API-2500 - GUI pops up and works like a charme. Tested in Reaper - it works!

I spent 4 hours looking for a solution and I am SO happy right now.

1 Like

The easy fix that worked for me: I had the same problem after updating Cubase to 11.0.40. I tried to inactivate and uninstall the Waves plugins and Waves Central and reinstall but like everyone else it did not work. I FIXED IT THIS WAY: Close Waves Central and Cubase. I clicked my Windows “Start” button and then Settings and then Apps. In the list of installed Apps I found all the Microsoft Visual C++ Distributables. I clicked on each one. The newer ones have both an active Modify button along with the Uninstall button. The older ones don’t have the active modify button, just a gray one. For the ones WITH a Modify button, from oldest to newest I clicked Modify and allowed it to modify my computer at the Yes/No prompt. The next window asked to Repair, Uninstall or Close. I picked Repair. After repairing all of them with the Modify button it asked me to reboot. After rebooting everything worked as normal. Let me know if it works for you. Thanks to everyone above who mentioned the distributables. I would never have guessed they were the problem.