Imported Tracks Are Playing About 10BPM Slow

I am moving a bunch of tracks exported from a KORG D3200 (as 24bit WAV) into Cubase Pro 10.5.2 When I import the files they play in Cubase at about 10 BPM slower then they actually are. Note that if I go into the audio folder and play the songs with Windows Media player they play at the correct speed.

An example: I import a 120 BPM set of WAVs (bass, drums, vocals, guitars). The project is 120 BPM. The individual files when viewed in the Pool have a BPM of 120.8 (this apparently is the default for imported files). When I play them they actually play at about 110 BPM. To get them to play at the proper speed I have to set the tracks to musical mode and then set the Tempo for each track in the Pool to 110. I don’t recall this happening in the past (I recently upgraded to 10.5.2). I can’t find a good explanation of what the “Temp” setting in tracks in the Pool does. It doesn’t seem to actually change the wave file, my guess is that it is just metadata describing the file and these metadata are used by Cubase when you change tempos or use musical mode and other things.

I have a considerable amount of experience using complex image processing and geographic information systems software and I always found that understand a little about what is going on under the hood made it a lot easier to figure things out. Unless I am looking in the wrong places, Cubase help files are not very good at explaining what is going on, they just kind of tell you what buttons to push. Can anyone:

  1. Help me understand why the imported files play at a slower tempo?

  2. Point me to documentation that explains how musical mode, Tempo listed in the Pool, and tempo in the project cursor are related. I am sure it is one of things that are intuitive once you know how they work.

Thanks in advance.

It’s almost certainly 48KHz audio being played at 44.1KHz.

Yes, that’s it.

But if you import audio files into Cubase, the sample rate should be automatically converted into the project sample rate (and a bug relating to this has allegedly been fixed in 10.5.20). So I’m not sure what’s happened here.

What I would do is set up a new empty project and set the project sample rate to 48kHz, then import your audio files.

That pointed in the correct direction. When I dug into the Korg the files were all originally created as 44.1 KHz - 16 bit by default and this is how they are exported. I recorded these several years ago and always took the default. When I use the Pool import function Cubase thinks they are 24 bit 48KHz WAV files. Now I have to figure out how to get Cubase to correctly recognize them or somehow convert them to 48KHz.

In preferences.

You could try importing them directly into the project using File - Import - audio file

I just need to push the “convert to project to project settings” option when importing. Everything is intuitive once you know how it works. Thanks, you solved my problem. I’ll still need to poke around the InterWeb to understand more about the inner workings of Cubase, but at least I am off and running again.

But if your ultimate destination is 44.1 for say a CD then there is no benefit changing it to 48 - you are just incurring unnecessary sample rate conversions.

If you search these forums you’ll find several very detailed discussions about how TImebases, Musical Mode & Tempo Tracks interact. Initially it is a bit confusing, mostly because some of the terms used are similarly named causing folks to mistake one for the other.

My defaults for new projects in Cubase are 48, so as I move things over I’ll probably convert the files so at least everything is consistent. I need to do some reading on KHz and bits, but for most of what I am doing it won’t matter since I play a lot of wrong notes anyway. Thanks to everyone for their quick response.

The sample rate determines how high a frequency can be accurately represented digitally. It is half the sample rate. So 44.1KHz can go up to 22.5KHz and 48KHz is 24KHz - basically dogs can hear the diff but most humans cannot. Conversion results in some data loss, so doing it ‘just because’ is generally not a wise choice. Figure out what sample rate you need for the end result and use that for your Project.

Bit depth controls how much headroom the audio has. In Cubase you don’t really need to be concerned with this as it is huge.

I hit the books last night on sample rates, bit depths, WAV formats etc. Fortunately it is very similar to what image processing concepts I am very familiar with. As recommended by Raino I am going to import the Korg-created WAV files in as they were recorded (44.1KHz) to avoid any resampling. Once again thanks to everyone of the forum that chimed in, its good to have a community that’s willing to help out those of us with less experience!

Is this a bug? I have recently upgraded to 10.5.
I have been using Cubase since the early 90’s, this is the first time I have imported stems that are 44.1k and it hasn’t automatically converted them to 48K which is massive problem as i just delivered a mix only for the client to ask why it was so fast and higher in pitch?? All my other version just convert the sample rate??

Check your Import Audio settings in Preferences>Editing>Audio.

I am answering my own question but it was a bug that was resolved with an update! Beware!!