Hypnotic Dance, Triebwerk and HSO cannot load presets

I have message “Loading Program Failed” if I open preset selection browser (that black one in picture) and doubleclick on a preset:

But if I choose “Load preset…” in the plugin’s top selection box and select preset to load, then nothing’s loaded, just nothing’s happening.

I have this problem on Hypnotic Dance, Triebwerk and HALion Symphonic Orchestra if they are loaded as single instruments. If they are loaded in a 16-channel HALion Sonic SE 3, then there is no problem to load presets.

What I missed or what’s changed in latest versions? This problem was on v3.4 of HSSE. Then I updated to 3.5 and have the same issue.

I removed .vstsound packages and installed latest. No result.


The standalone plugin versions of these Halion libraries have been discontinued, as they became unnecessary when Halion Sonic SE 3 Free was released.

The current version of their preset files isn’t compatible with the standalone plugins.

These were not standalone in a standard meaning. These were single instruments - a shell to load single preset at a time in a DAW. Standalone means that we can run it without DAW.

If they were discontinued then why they are in a list of plugins? For example Mystic is discontinued and disappeared from a list of plugins, but Hypnotic Dance, Triebwerk and HSO still exists in list as wel as Dark Planet, which still works perfectly, but is the same “standalone” as you mentioned. So it can be used in two ways - loaded in multichannel HSSE or as single one channel instrument as it was for years.

Can you provide a link where the discontinuation described? And why Dark Planet still not dicontinued? It’s the same category if we look on making or performance.

Sorry, by standalone plugin I mean separate plugin. The plugin versions are no longer updated, and haven’t been part of the standard download for 5 years. The installers from Downloads | Steinberg are legacy downloads for users who still need 32 bit/old OS support.

If you download Hypnotic Dance, Triebwerk, Dark Planet or HSO through the Steinberg Download Manager, you’ll notice that they don’t include a installer at all anymore, only .vstsound Halion libraries and the option to download Halion Sonic SE 3.

Mystic (old stock Cubase plugin) is no longer in your plugin list because it has been removed from the Cubase 12 installer, as it’s no longer officially supported by Steinberg. It’s not installed in the standard VST3 folder, so you have to move it from a previous Cubase installation for your DAW to scan it.

These plugins show up in your plugin list because you’ve installed them previously. Cubase only automatically removes plugins that crash on startup.

To clarify: Hypnotic Dance, Triebwerk, Dark Planet and HSO are still being sold and are fully supported by Steinberg, but the plugins should only be installed if you need them for compatibility reasons.

So why Dark Planet still is loading presets, but those three don’t?
Dark Planet also have only .vstsound files downloaded with Download Manager and has no installation as it was before for all four packages.

And the Downloads page on Steinberg Support don’t have installations for those plugins to have them installed as separate plugins. And I’m not talking about 32bit/old support.

Also Padshop for first seconds after loading tells that there is problem with license, but after that message is gone and all is working correctly - is loading presets and works great. So I guess that there are some license (new licensing system) issues. Because Steinberg is working to transfer everything to the new licensing system.

To clarify: I used to use separate plugin versions in situations when there is no need for 16 channels nor HSSE features for mixing and use of inner effects. For 100 and more track template there is significant difference in RAM usage.

The Dorico still offers to use separate Triebwerk, Dark Planet, Hypnotic Dance, but it don’t offer HSO, because it always use HSSE. It’s okay. I understand this.

So here is another point I want to you to read carefully and overview your opinion written above. I open Hypnotic Dance separate plugin in Dorico or Cubase, and as I wrote, presets cannot be loading from the black browser nor from the gray list. Okay, but I can load my own created presets I created one to three years back. How could you explain this?

P.S. I’m beta tester for VST Live and have installed it. Can it be a reason to have something a bit different? I hope no. If yes, then I would think that VST Live did something to preset library.

Okay, I understood. I didn’t have updated Dark Planet presets. Now main .vstsound pack is the same v1, but _presets.vstsound is v3 and it don’t allow to load any sound in “standalone” plugin. Nice.

So how “standalone” plugins will react if I open old project where there was no problems, it means where there was previous preset versions that can be loaded in “standalone”? I cannot guess the parameters I tweaked and load default preset in HSSE. It won’t sound as it was in “standalone”.


  1. Dark Planet as separate plugin with default preset took ~100 KB of RAM
  2. Halion Sonic SE 3 itself took ~350 KB of RAM + Dark Planet a bit.

So feel the difference?

I would ask why this move to disable loading presets in old and light plugins if sound packs are the same, only preset definitions changed? Just to disable of loading them?

The .vstsound files have been updated to better support newer Halion versions. They’re not just presets, they can also contain scripts, images and other resources too.

If RAM usage is a concern, loading multiple presets in a single Halion Sonic SE instance is more efficient than multiple separate plugins. Each preset uses less than 10MB of data, not including samples. The same applies to other plugins such as Kontakt.

Okay, I understand. Everything seems to be okay including the fact that old projects, where is separate Dark Planet, loaded without problems - the preset is loaded and sounds good.

But I don’t see my own created presets in HSSE. Of course they were not updated to comply new format. It’s very hard to find my presets in MediaBay - I need to set “plugin matches Dark Planet” or going right to the place where they are - user content / vst3 presets / Steinberg media tech… / Dark Planet… It’s not serious. With “standalone” I had all presets in one place and only criteria was to set count of star to find what I need. Now it’s harder.

Anyway, thank you @Romantique_Tp for your time!

It would be nice to have old “standalone” plugins downloadable. I have them all in my archive, but as I read around some don’t have them and I am not entitled to send them.