HALion stuck in staccato playback

I’ve seen related issues posted here, but tried all suggested fixes and none of them work.

I’m running Dorico 4 Pro and using the included default HALion sounds. On my laptop (Framework i7, Windows 11), the playback for all instruments seems to be stuck in staccato for all files. If it’s not actually sending a permanent staccato MIDI message, it’s still playing all notes at about 50% length.

On my desktop (Hackintosh, OS12 Monterrey), everything works fine.

Here’s what I’ve tried, to (almost) no avail:

  • Quit and restart
  • Brand new project file
  • Switch instruments, both in Setup and in HALion Sonic
  • Add nat, legato, and slurred markings
  • Adjust staccato and normal playback note lengths (e.g., setting staccato length to 100% note length)
  • Fine-tuned adjustment of note lengths in the Play MIDI scroll
  • Different playback templates
  • Different endpoint expression maps, including “default” and “cc11 dynamics”
  • Reset playback overrides

The one thing that did work (temporarily):

  • Total clean install of ALL Dorico and sound libraries

I’d include an example file, but as I said: the issue is localized to one computer. The exact same files play just fine on my desktop.

Any help is appreciated! I’d love to avoid continually doing clean installs.

If I understand well, the playback techniques lane in Play mode does not show staccato, but the sound is staccato. As if the other articulations were not available? That is certainly unusual, I don’t remember reading such thing in this forum…

If you can reproduce this problem at will in a minimal project, please do attach it here so we can take a look and see if the behaviour is reproducible for us like it is for you.

I will when it happens again. Right after posting this, everything works fine on my laptop. :expressionless:

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And it’s back! Like I said earlier, this file is localized to my laptop only, so I doubt there may be anything in the file itself. But I’m ready to be wrong!

It makes me wonder if there’s a problem with the HALion instruments themselves. Is there anything I can be checking or resetting that I haven’t mentioned above?

Always-staccato.zip (571.8 KB)

I’m sorry to say that this project plays back exactly as expected for me! Does the problem persist if you quit and restart Dorico?

That’s what I figured since it works on my other computer. Yes, I’ve tried quitting and restarting many times. On rare occasions, it works, but the next time I open it, it doesn’t.

Is there anything in HALion I could be trying?

Update: testing out my different outputs seems to have an effect.

On my Framework laptop, I’m using the “Generic Low Latency ASIO Driver.” When I use the built-in speakers, playback is fine. When I change to my Bluetooth headphones, the playback becomes staccato.

I’ve isolated the issue to the headphones as I’ve tried:

  • Starting Dorico with one or the other already set up
  • Changing between them after startup
  • Different projects

I’ll say that these headphones have worked just fine for the past 7 months of Dorico use, so unsure if there was a driver or Dorico update that has caused the issue.

Can you double-check the device settings after choosing your Bluetooth headphones? Could there be a mismatch in sample rate or buffer size that’s causing the problem?

Sorry for the late response! I’ve checked the sample rate (48000 for the headphones) and buffer size. Everything matches how it should. Problem is persisting.

Edit: plugging the headphones in with an 1/8" cable resolves the issue so the Bluetooth connection with Dorico is the culprit. Headphones function just fine over Bluetooth with all other programs at current settings.

The problem will be, I suspect, that your Bluetooth headphones present two devices to your computer: an output device, and an input device. These presumably end up with exactly the same name. The input device has a very low sample rate because it’ll be a low-quality microphone, while the output device has a more normal sample rate. Dorico is getting confused about which device to use, and that’s resulting in the wrong sample rate being chosen.

Solved! Sharing my results in case anyone is in a similar position.

I suspect this is entirely due to the Generic Low Latency ASIO Driver (v1.0.21.10). It may be affecting sample rate as well, as @dspreadbury suggests, but everything seems to be matched up at 48K across the board. It also seems to be pointing correctly at the stereo output and not the input. I could be wrong!

Opening up Device Settings > Device Control Panel in Dorico launches the ASIO driver’s control panel, which has an option for allow ASIO host application take exclusive control of selected port configuration.

This had been enabled by default, as well as a sister option within Window’s native Sound control panel for the headphones (this one is for any application rather than Dorico). Disabling this option through the Dorico panel resolves the issue, even if the Windows native Sound control panel keeps the system-wide option enabled.

Thanks for the prompt communication, @dspreadbury. :slight_smile:

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