HiDPI mode and plugin issues. (I'm quite sure I'm not the only one here)

Cubase 11 is the greatest, most powerful, user-friendly version of Cubase of all time, I just want to start by saying that. I ALSO believe it’s the nicest on the eyes, and so much user customization with the colors and schemes.

HiDPI mode - it’s REALLY throwing me for a loop. I’m trying to get a sense of how everyone else is combating this. I have a 15.6 inch Dell XPS with 4K ability. Cubase looks FLIPPIN PHENOMENAL on it. But… when you try to load up a plug, such as ANY waves plug, or perhaps an EZDrummer VSTi, or perhaps OMNISPHERE or PODFARM… wow… it’s REALLY not readable it’s so tiny. and it’s very difficult to utilize a mouse with these plugs. I guess the only choice is to go back to non-HiDPI mode, which STINKS because then everything is HUGE. But the plugs all look correct.,

So it’s like… a catch 22 really. I DONT want a huge Cubase, because it’s nice to be able to see so much on my 15.6 4K screen here. On the other hand, I need to use plugs!! And some (like Omnisphere become pretty much unusable).

What’s everyone else doing to solve this? Keep in mind, on my main studio setup with dual 32 inch 4K displays, this is no sweat, everything is very visible. But on my mobile unit which I take on the road… sheisse!

I think the lesser of the two evils is just shutting off HiDPI… NONE of the compromise options seem to mitigate the issues. It’s too bad cuz it’s just stunning. Until you load a plug.


Maybe you should put a bit more pressure on the plug in vendors?


Probably those plugins aren’t compatible with HiDPI. Have you tried this option though so that they aren’t appear so tiny? https://helpcenter.steinberg.de/hc/en-us/articles/360017509919-Cubase-11-Using-DPI-unaware-plug-ins-on-Windows

There are some plug-in suppliers who haven’t yet got it together and upgraded to resizeable GUI, but many are well up there. With Omnisphere the option is under Utility - Magnify Window and that can go up 2 time scaling, which should be fine. With Waves, it depends on the plug-in but many of the V12 versions have an option under the Burger menu (3 horizontal lines at the top right) of GUI size and options of 75% to 200%. Can’t comment on EZ Drummer but Superior Drummer and EZ bass, which are their newer products have scalable GUI. So it is a bit hit and miss but you may need to update/upgrade some of your plug-ins and some of those, especially Waves, may be a cost option if you don’t have the maintenance on them.

On non scalable GUI’s (i.e. those recognised by Cubase as non-scaling) there is always the option to click the downward arrow at the top right of the Cubase frame to the plug-in window and select ‘Allow Window to be Resized’ which doubles the size but won’t be as sharp and often causes weird artifacts but it might get you by. Some just plain simple don’t scale well (looking at you iZotope) and we will just need to wait for plug-in updates.

  1. you have options in Windows display preferences for applications to show larger scale e.g. 150%? have you tried that?

  2. latest version of cubase has an option to multiply this further

3 ). third-party plug-ins we have to consider on a case-by-case basis.

all waves plugins since version 12 allow you to choose small, medium or large via a little Icon on the right side . since version 13 have smarter high DPI support . they seem to work well for me .

likewise the Spectrasonics instruments seem to work okay for me on the high DPI mode. not too small.

iZotope plugins have issues. nectar3 VST3 still shows the “allow window to resize” option which I understand should not be there for VST3, and makes it look terrible.

  1. i find cubase hiDPI mode does not integrate very well with Windows scaling. with a mix of 1080p and 4K monitors, in high DPI mode, I have to move badly-drawn plugin windows to one of the 4K monitors, close it and reopen it, and then move it back to a less-than-4k monitor to make it look right. I do this many many times a day and it’s very frustrating. Do Steinberg test Cubase with third-party plug-ins? Do they test Cubase with mixed monitor set ups? not much it seems. and when users report issues they just assume the users have done something stupid or Windows is malfunctioning, or there is something wrong with the third-party Plugin, or maybe the Nvidia driver. As a last resort they may accept it as a Cubase issue … and then never do anything about it. I have a long-term issue where, when resizing Audio Events, the cursor suddenly turns into the pencil for no reason and if I just move the mouse to a non-4K monitor and back, the cursor changes back to what it should be. I also have to do this many times a day. Come on Steinberg!

In 2021 I think 4K monitors mixed with HD monitors is pretty standard for Cubase users. IMHO Steinberg needs to look at the VST3 spec, and how vendors are using it, to develop a more robust solution for hiDPI in these mixed monitor environments.

Guys and or gals , thanks so much this amazingly helpful info from everyone, love this forum.

I think now might be a great time to bite the bullet and upgrade my Waves stuff to get the hiDPI ability, as much as i hate to give them MORE money. Eh, whatever great plugs!

i’ve definitely messed around to the MAX with the windows settings… i guess i’m asking for too much: on my 15.6 laptop screen i want everything fairly small within cubase, so i can see lots of tracks at once, at the same time i want all my plugs to be large so i can quickly navigate. I know this transition to 4k is only temporary, but i just was searching out what everyone was doing in the meanwhile and seeing if anyone knew anything i didn’t.

THANKS again!


Just to say I’m still intending to allocate time to investigate this issue with Nectar.


1 Like

FabFilter too apparently …