Cubase cancels out any other sound?

so I have used Cubase since 2018 across multiple versions, (not my pc) and I could open any other apps and still receive a sound fine. however, when I got Cubase 11 on my pc I experienced a problem and can’t fix it?
whenever Cubase is open, my microphone and audio will not work with any other apps?

Hi and welcome,

One ASIO driver cannot be shared among multiple applications. Make sure, you are using other driver in the other applicant(s), please.

Interesting. I’d wondered about this.

I am using a Focusrite audio interface with ASIO and Sonarworks Reference calibration for Cubase

I am also using Focusrite audio interface with ASIO and Sonarworks SystemWide (also in ASIO mode) calibration for desktop audio.

I can use both at the same time without any problems at all.

Reference is a plugin which is used in the Control Room inserts, so Cubase is still using the normal ASIO driver. It’s not as if Sonarworks is mixing the signals prior to them going to the ASIO interface.

So I wonder why it works for me?

@SledDriver I think the point of this topic was to help @art.reeder2013 to figure out his problem :smiley: but in any case what you tell could have several explanations.
For example if in the Studio settings you tell to release the driver when the application (Cubase) is in background you are able to listen to your audio player while Cubase is minimized


No, I do not have that checked.

And I do not minimise Cubase.

I can literally, for instance, play Youtube or Spotify or any other audio app while Cubase is full screen and playing. Works perfect.

I have family high up in Focusrite technical. I’ll ask them about it. :slight_smile: I also have an ongoing dialogue with Sonarworks technical. I’ll ask them too.

I’d assumed it was normal.

Oh, and re your opening gambit, I consider my comments as possibly part of the solution to the OP and not mindless drivel as you suggest. :wink:

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I don’t think Youtube or Spotify is using ASIO driver. I would expect they are using different type of driver, like WDM or MME (if the names are correct and still valid in Windows 10, I’m sorry, I’m not Windows guy).

Sonarworks Systemwide is their non-DAW calibration facility for all system sound except DAW.

The DAW uses the usual ASIO driver, and a Sonarworks plugin within the DAW to calibrate the Control Room output, so that is separate from the system sound.

The system uses another program called SystemWide to calibrate all other sound. This program is seen by the system as an additional audio driver, prior to the actual audio driver, so the Windows Sound output dialog looks like this.


Sonarworks can run in ASIO or WASAPI mode, but I am definitely using it in ASIO as you can see below, and it’s even appears to be using the same ASIO channels as the DAW.

As you can see Sonarworks SystemWide is the default output for the desktop audio.


And SystemWide is kept as the default device automatically.


So I still don’t understand how they can both play at the same time, but they do, very well.

I think that’s the same principle when you use Voicemeeter (VB-Audio VoiceMeeter) that virtually mixes the signal allowing to merge multiple sound sources at once.

For example with it I can open different Native Instruments standalone app (ex. Guitar Rig, FM8, Massive) all at the same time and I can hear sound from each (using my onboard audio chip). While doing this I can play my guitar in the external USB card and still hear it.

This because Voicemeeter is the output same as it says in your last image: when you change the output in your system SystemWide will hijack it (by remaining still the default output) but will set as its output the device you chose effectively allowing to have multiple sources that go in SystemWide and one output (SystemWide itself).

Ofc I do not have it installed so mine is just a guess.

I am also a bit confused about the setup because in this page (Can I use Systemwide with my DAW? – Sonarworks FAQ) see bottom says:

Please note that Systemwide will not work with Cubase on Windows because Systemwide currently supports Windows native drivers only while Cubase works exclusively with ASIO drivers. We plan to add ASIO driver support on Systemwide in the future.

That info is out of date. ASIO was added to SystemWide some time ago and works well.

And you would never want to use SystemWide with your DAW. Sonarworks provides a separate VST version called Reference, as I mentioned above, and you insert that in your Control Room insert chain to gain calibration. The audio routing within Cubase is normal, going via whichever output driver you are using, including ASIO.

In fact you can use multiple instances of Reference in separate Cubase monitor setups concurrently to calibrate various near/mid/wide field monitors all at the same time as you switch between them.

SystemWide is completely separate from the DAW Reference product, and is meant for desktop audio, not DAW audio. And it does that very well too. SystemWide can be run in ASIO or WASAPI modes.

Reference doesn’t have such a mode. It just feeds whatever drivers your DAW is set up to use, ASIO or otherwise.