Cubase 6 Project Corruption (this is getting serious)

Hey guys, I’ve been experiencing some HUGE dramas on a recent project with Cubase 6. It seems that sometimes I save the project, a random plugin has its settings and preset list corrupted. This is incredibly hard to spot as the project is complete and I’m trying to render down my final WAVs for the label.

The first instance of corruption occurred on Araldfx Stormgate1:
Corruption 1.png
I then repaired this and continued to work, then a few saves later found an even nastier corruption in Sylenth1:
Corruption 2.jpg
All I have been doing between saves is adjusting clip levels, channel levels and a few plugin parameters.

I’m honestly really concerned because I just don’t know what will get corrupted next time I save, the project has a LOT of plugin instances. I’ve tried to systematically reproduce the issue but I’m struggling with that.

Has anyone seen this behaviour before?

Thanks for your help :slight_smile:

I have seen a fair amount of project corruption myself, and it’s usually due to one of three things for me.

Firstly I notice it when I’ve got a very complex and large project. This may say have many edits on many audio tracks, or rather a lot of automation, etc. Usually too many edits will tend to crash Cubase as well as corrupt my project. To avoid this, I always save numbered projects, keep everything that’s ever created in the project directory, and then periodically bounce the complex audio clips down to keep things a bit simpler.

The second thing I notice is that when I reach my memory limit (<2GB on XP, not tested in Win7) then the project will likely be corrupted next time I try to load it. I can see how much memory Cubase uses by using the Task Manager. It doesn’t corrupt while you’re using it, but when you save it and load again then it’s corrupt - a nuisance because you can be busy auto-saving corrupt projects for ages before you notice, all day sometimes! Also when the memory limit is reached I find that some instruments don’t load their presets correctly or at all. I avoid this by simplifying my projects and rendering things down to clips, samples or whatever I can so I keep away from the memory limit.

The third thing which causes corruption for me is rogue plugins, and specifically in my case AutoTune7. This is frustrating because it’s not like it’s ripped, it’s a full iLok’d version which I upgraded to last year (wish I’d bought Evo cause it would have cost me less!), but it just causes Cubase to do all sorts of weird things including project corruption, crashing on exit, pops/clicks, phasing issues, etc. So, now I disable AutoTune7 except until the last minute I can, then I correct things all in one go and disable it again, or use vari-audio.

So I guess, I’m saying, check for any of these issues and avoid them. Hope this helps.


Hey Mike, can’t thank you enough for taking the time to reply with this info, it was very helpful.

I checked my memory usage and don’t think that’s the culprit. The project is not overly large or complex, especially in comparison to others I’ve worked on, I think it’s about 60 tracks in total but not many audio chops. Most my projects are roughly this size if not a tad bigger.

Thus, I would be guessing it is related to a bad plugin or perhaps a crash which has permanently done some damage to the project file. Anyway, as you do, I also save many version of my project, so I went back to a previous version, made the final changes I needed carefully and then closely cross-checked it with the older version to ensure no corruption occurred after the save.

I also spent a little time screwing about, trying to replicate the issue, and I did manage to replicate it one more time but I’m not sure exactly what I did to trigger it. I will give it another try in the near future.

At this point, I just want to get the final render done for the label so I can get this bad boy released :slight_smile:

I really really wish Steinberg would implement an XML or text based file format instead of binary as it would make it much easier to troubleshoot these sorts of issues.

Once again, thank you so much!! :slight_smile:

Glad to help.

As a closing statement, I’d say that Cubase is great!! I push it hard with all my projects, 100s of plugins over sometimes 100+ tracks, and it does become a little unreliable at these extremes. The facilities it provides are second to none but I wish it had a few more diagnostic tools though.