Glitchy exports / Stuttering tracks on new PC

Hi there,

It’s a long post, so thanks for reading this!

Here’s a short summary of what’s happening: once in a while Cubase gives me an audio export that has a stutter effect on one or multiple sounds, The glitch always occurs in the same spots and sounds different in C9.5 or C10. I’m unable to replicate this behavior using other daws on the exact same system, and I’m also unable to replicate it on my XPS 15 9570 laptop which uses the exact same plugin versions / cubase version / etc.

You can listen to the glitches here: https://soundcloud.com/musicbyraven/sets/stutter-2/s-hxAFX

I’ve been trying to get in touch with Steinberg support about ongoing issues I’m having with C10 in combination with Windows 10 on my new PC build. But the support I’ve received so far has been so tediously slow that it’s really not any use at all. So far it has been the worst customer service I have ever experienced, absolutely horrible for a company working at this level. Even the phone numbers on the website aren’t working. When you have people and companies relying on your product you should be able to assist them in a decent manner.

So here’s another try of getting in touch with someone who can hopefully help me out here.

I’m running Cubase 10 on a freshly built system and have been encountering glitch issues for about 3 months now. My first support request about this dates from March 17, 2019. I did receive some replies since my initial request, but there’s an average of 3-4 weeks in between messages, which is extremely long for something that makes Cubase so unreliable to me.

Sometimes I’m able to make 150 good exports before a bad one occurs, sometimes I have 5 bad ones in a row, sometimes I have 10 good ones, 1 bad one, 26 good ones, 2 bad ones… etc. There doesn’t seem to be a pattern in it. I have tried an extensive list of fixes and consulted IT experts from my neighborhood to try and get this fixed, but nothing has worked so far.

At this point I cannot guarantee any sort of quality and consistently to my clients - which even makes switching to another DAW with normal customer support a better option than waiting for someone to help me out here.

Does anyone here have connections to someone from Steinberg? All help is greatly appreciated!

– FULL LIST OF WHAT I’VE TESTED UP TILL NOW —

Here are my specs: https://tweakers.net/gallery/618142/inventaris/?inv_id=1836156

CPU
Set to a fixed clock, disabled speedstep, turboboost, etc.
Removed the overclock from my system, no fix.
Disabled hyperthreading in BIOS, no fix.
Ran Aida64 for four hours straight to check the temps and stability of the system, all pass.

RAM
Ran MemTest86 for a full night (around 10 hours) to test the stability of the RAM, all pass.
XMP on or off in BIOS, no fix.

HARDDRIVES
Physically removed all non essential drives from my system to make sure they weren’t slowly dying on me, no fix.
Tested all drives with crystal disk mark and other software, no errors, SMART data reports are looking good.
Adjusted the windows power plan to never let hard drives sleep.

AUDIO INTERFACE
Thought that my current interface (Focusrite Saffire PRO 24DSP) might be the culprit. Bought a new interface that runs over USB instead of Firewire and fully uninstalled the Pro 24DSP. No Fix.
Also tested with a Dragonfly RED DAC using the FL ASIO and Magix ASIO drivers. No fix.

GRAPHICS CARD
Fully updated my GTX1080ti to latest version, runs steady in games, video editing, etc. Cubase hangs on close, but this seems to be an ongoing issue with Windows / Steinberg / NVIDIA.

NETWORK
Removed my WiFI card from the computer, started using ethernet instead. No fix.
Disabled all software that syncs over LAN / WiFi (Dropbox, Google Drive, Synology NAS, Resilio Sync), no fix.

DRIVERS AND BIOS
Installed all latest drivers (chipset, memory, hdds, etc) for my mobo, updated the BIOS to latest version. No fix.

DEVICE MANAGER
Disabled all non-essential devices, removed all additional audio devices. No fix.

PLUGINS AND SOFTWARE
Fully re-installed windows 10 x64, re-installed all plugins one by one with testing in between installs. All seemed to run fine for about a week, then the glitches appeared again.
Removed all Visual C++ installations except for the one that came with Cubase. No fix.
Compared some projects with glitches to see if there are certain plugins being used consistently. But even upon removing all these plugins the glitches still appeared.
Changed the disk preload setting in Cubase to 4 seconds and 6 seconds. No fix.
Disabled the “Suspend VST3 plug-in processing when no audio signals are received” feature. No fix.

USB DEVICES
Unplugged all USB devices except for my eLicenser, mouse and keyboard. No fix.

LATENCYMON AND TASKMANAGER
All looking good both during exports and with regular use. No spikes / peaks, not even when the export turns out to be glitched on playback. There is a difference in how Cubase 9.5 and Cubase 10 utilize the cores, C10 doesn’t seem to use the Hyperthreading cores as much.

LATENCYMON https://i.imgur.com/qPQnqVk.png
C9.5 https://i.imgur.com/r6JEh0x.png
C10 https://i.imgur.com/ROBsDMy.png

WINDOWS EVENT LOG
Checked the windows event log to see if there were any errors, only Dropbox reported some SSL errors. No fix.

OTHER DAWS AND OTHER SYSTEM
Í haven’t been able to replicate these issues in FL studio and Studio One. To test this I’ve made some dummy projects using the same plugins in a similar fashion. But so far I have been unable to get glitchy exports from either DAW using the same ASIO driver as Cubase.
I’m also running a Dell XPS 9570 laptop with C10 and the exact same VSTs (versions match 100%) and haven’t been able to get any glitches from this system.

It seems there’s something about this particular build and Cubase that just doesn’t glue…

J