External Midi Clock devices with Cubase Artist 11

Hi there !

As I understand, i can’t use External Midi Clock device with Cubase, cause Cubase can’t slave to incoming Midi clock, just sending Midi Clock to external devices.
They have said to me that Ableton or ProTools supports incoming Midi clock, i wish the same for Cubase.
I was thinking to add External Midi Clock device like E-RM MIDIclock+, to have better control and better sync between DAW and hardware synth, but i guess this is not possible ?

So, i’d like to ask you, do you use any external hardware to control Midi clock, any other solution or ?
Any tips or recommendations are welcomed.

Protools does not lock to MIDI clock. It can however lock to MTC or generate MIDI clock, same as Cubase/Nuendo.
Ableton Live certainly can lock to MIDI clock, it was more or less came from the origin of the sequencer. Cubase classic decades ago, could lock to MIDI clock, too.
Despite these exception, MIDI clock doesn’t carry stable enough information to play audio against. It only sent/received 24 pulses / quater note which has no relation to the audio clock so that daw tries to lock to it has to time stretch all the audio it plays.

Besides, use of MIDI clock slaves in Cubase/Nuendo is far more superior than any other DAW. Set up all the MIDI clock devices in your setup as external instrument, once you’ve done that, you can insert any buffered plugin to any of them without causing shift in timing. Cubase compensates those delays by shifting MIDI clock earlier no matter how complex the routing is. This cannot be done in any other sequencer and it is actually a new ‘feature’ in Cubase11/Nuendo11.

I use lots of MIDI clock devices, SND ACME-4 to convert, control and distribute MIDI clock to other devices, 909,808,303,NordModular, G2, analog sequencers and etc. All locks to Cubase very solidly and you can even use lots of UAD plugin on their individual outputs like 1176 on the 909’s BD out while playing, and everything still perfectly stays in sync. This is impossible with any other daw on the market.
Setting external insts needs a few know-hows depending on how many MIDI outs or audio inputs, if you need help please ask.

Thanks for your answer !

The best result right now is to play external hardware synth with “internal clock” enabled.
It’s quite stable.
If setting “slave” on hardware synth i get sometimes little out of sync sound, mostly with arp presets.
Synth is Korg Minilogue XD and it’s connected thru USB/Midi cable.
I have also tried to connect module thru MIDI IN/OUT to soundcards interface, but results are the same like thru USB/MIDI.
What I like is to use editor in Cubase for Minilogue XD and record knob movements and it’s easier to edit, without touching the module.
We’ll see how it goes in the future.
Need to expand my knowledge about Midi clock devices.

It’s maybe because the MIDI clock sent to the device is not shifted earlier i.e. delay compensated, perhaps you connected output of the synth to an audio interface and USB-midi. As posted earlier, you could try to use the device as an external inst, assign both audio and MIDI of the synth to the inst, and send midi clock to the external inst instance (not to the physical port.). That way, recorded notes on project, CCs, arppegios, and internal sequence will be perfectly in sync.
But for just arpeggiator no-sync maybe simple and good enough.

Also, I am sure you can automate MIDI CCs to record and playback movements, the synth is new enough to be able to react entirely to CCs.

Thanks !

Yes, synth is connected to audio input of soundcards interface.
Also, I have already tried to connect synth via MIDI IN/OUT cable to soundcards interface and yes, i was able to record knob movement, but via synth editor in Cubase , there’s so much better overview over whole synth and easier editing of recorded knob movement, just like i do for VST synths.

About , creating external instruments, i believe it’s only possible for Cubase Pro version and not Artist ?

You can record CC from the synth to a MIDI track and playback to the synth.

So, your personal opinion is, that connecting over MIDI IN/OUT connection is more stable and more suggested ?

I have played little more with synth module and Cubase yesterday,
internal clock works the best for me.
If setting soundcards latency low i have better response with synth module, but takes little more CPU power then in Cubase.

I am not sure which part you are referring here.
If you want to record knob movement, record them as midi cc to a midi track , then there are options to treat them as automation or edit in midi parts.
If you want to use the arpeggio, you don’t really have to sync them as they are triggered by midi notes (if recorded), and tempo deviations won’t become too bad in short term. So leaving it ‘internal’ i.e. no sync is ok.
If you want to sync drum machines or sequencers, you have to use midi clock to sync as they could be played all the way.


Thank you !
Everything is fine, just like you said.
Internal clock is way to go, it’s stable, even arp section isn’t that bad.
Ofcourse when polishing track at the end , i can record arp also in wav and then edit it, to fit into track.
Thanks again

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