Input Signal Metering?

I am noticing in Cubase 7.5 that the channel meters (when set to “input”) do not reflect any changes made to the pre gain.Is there any way to get true pre fader meter activity? The manual states that the meters are post gain when set to input but that is not what I am seeing.


I think if the meters really we’re post-gain, it would not make sense…
Cause if the soundcards input gets overdriven, and the gain was set to -10dB for example, the signal would look clean in the software with peak at -10db, right?
Probably the manual’s just wrong…

That does make sense as far as the input buss is concerned. What doesn’t make sense, is that there is no pre-fader channel metering available for mixing.
The gain control in the Pre section on the input buss will attenuate the incoming signal during tracking.
The gain control in the Pre section on the channel will attenuate the recorded clip afterwards but does not reflect any gain changes in the channel meter in “input” mode but does show the gain changes in the Master meter.

So if the gain is changed pre-fader by the gain setting why doesn’t the channel meter reflect those changes in input mode? If you would want to check the actual level of the recorded clip you could just bypass the pre section and then re-engage it to reflect your change in level. Kind of makes the “Input” meter setting on the channels worthless IMO.


+1 on being mad on this.

Complained about it ages ago, they never listened. There needs to be an option for post input gain but one that’s before inserts and fader.

What I do as a workaround is set the meters to post fader when doing the input gain adjustments. Makes no sense on paper, but it’s Cubase gives us…


you can also create a group and set its output to not connected. Then use a pre/fader send from your audio track to that group and set your meters to input. That way you can meter the actual input in the track itself, and the pre-gain in the group channel.

Hope this helps.


Yes, you could do that along with some other similar work arounds but that clutters the mixer IMO. Pre fader metering is pretty common in most other DAWS I just find it strange they chose not to include it.


Does the manual really say that the meters are post-gain knob? I thought I remembered it was like that in C6.5, but I don’t have that loaded up on my new system to confirm.

Anyway, to avoid the messiness/clutter of groups, another way to continue to use the input meters in a meaningful way is to make any gain adjustments with the waveform trim tools on the project page … I think … those amplitude adjustments are made pre-meter.

If anyone checks that out before I do, please post back.


This from the manual:
Meter Position:
•If Input is activated, the meters show input levels for all audio channels and input/output channels. The input meters are post input gain.
•If “Post-Fader” is activated, the meters show post-fader levels.
•If “Post-Panner” is activated, the meters show post-fader levels and also reflect pan settings.

As far as using the trim tools on the project page that would only work if have single clips on each channel.


Well, you’re right, there it is in the manual.

Re: the trim tool: you’re right, I’ve only ever used it on one clip at a time, but …

Can’t “select all” clips and use it?

Meter Position:
•If Input is activated, the meters show input levels for all audio channels and input/output channels. The input meters are post input gain.

Isn’t that what you want? Does it not work this way? A bug/broken feature then? Did it work that way in C6.5?

I have honestly not tried in Cubase 7/7.5.

In Cubase 6.5 I have used Slate Virtual Tape Machine in the first insert slot, using its meter. For so long that I don’t remember.

AS it states in the manual is the way it should work - but it doesn’t! Yes it has been broken!
It worked properly in 5x but I bypassed 6 so can’t say if it worked - I assume so otherwise there would have been an outcry back then!

As gain staging is a rather critical part of tracking/mixing, this is a serious flaw. Yes it can be worked around, but the term “work around” is a clear indication that something is wrong. One of the features I always liked about Cubase was the gain controls were built into the mixer, and didn’t need to be “inserted” as on some other DAWs. One of the official workarounds involves using a group channel in the send to monitor the post gain levels - not acceptable in my book.

Moderator Luis Dongo claimed in another post that this behaviour is by design. I’m afraid I can’t see the logic behind such a design decision.

The on/off or bypass switch on the pre section only seems to affect the filters and is reflected in the meter levels. I believe the gain should also be affected (it’s not) and I think this oversight (BUG) is the key to the problem. Pre bypassed would show the true channel input signal (no gain, filtering or phase influence). Pre when engaged would show the pre-Fader (post gain) level (assuming PFL is selected). That would be the correct solution!

Hi BriHar,

I have to disagree. In Cubase 5 and Cubase 6 it was also pre gain (always has been). The idea of this meter position is to show the “unprocessed” signal coming from the audio interface. There is indeed a bug, but it is in the Cubase 7 Manual. I have already reported this wrong information.


Regarding workarounds,
I set up the Cubase mixer input channels Pre’s and Faders for unity gain (0.0) and use the gain controls either on my interface (UR series has built in pre’s) or on a favoured preamp, using the meters on the Cubase mixer to check the level and the level I am checking is the input to the recording channel (which if all is set to unity gain will be identical to the input channel.
In this sense the flaw in the metering is not particularly a hindrance during tracking (the input to the recording track must of necessity, because of the routing, be the output (post fader) of the input channel - unless that is somehow broken too), it’s just important that one knows what one is seeing!
Setting gains for mixing levels is where the problems will likely arise, unless you do your gain settings with the fader at 0.0 and use post fader metering.
I’m assuming in the above that direct monitoring has been turned off - otherwise the observed metering may be different, especially during tracking.

Is my memory so bad… :confused:
Thanks for the input Luis.
As you can see from my WF above this issue kind of passed me by until I specifically tested it.
I still can’t fathom the reasoning behind this design decision - it deviates from virtually every mixer paradigm, analogue and virtual I’ve ever known.
If the gain is set at unity, the signal shown is the “unprocessed” signal (would be too if we could bypass the entire Pre section as I mention earlier). Typically one sets the gain full CCW, engages PFL and then increases the gain 'til one has an optimum level. This is gain staging 101 - but not in the Cubase mixer.
Unless using post fader, with fader 0.0 as mentioned in my other post, it is no wonder people are getting confused, especially if it erroneously depicts the classical way of operating in the manual.
One more reason the Manual and more importantly the online program help needs to be revised! Especially if, as you say, this has always been wrong. (I’m pretty sure it worked traditionally in VST :wink: )

Actually, it works just fine on multiple clips by my testing just now.

Select all clips, then use the info line volume to increase/decrease the gain.

I believe this is the way I will do it - never touch the pre-gain knob, and continue to use the “input” meter mode as I have in the past.

My recollection is that the pre-gain “trim” knob was pre-meter in C6.5, but I guess I’m wrong as the moderator says it was always as it is now. I don’t want to load up C6.5 in my new rig to check!

Just saw this In another section of the Manual (Pg. 116 “Setting Input Levels”)
To check the level of the unprocessed signal coming into the audio hardware, you need to switch the Meter Position of the level meters to “Input”. In this mode, the input channel level meters will show the level of the signal at the input of the bus, before any adjustments such as input gain, EQ, effects, level or pan

So, not broken but by design, and the manual (at least in some parts) not wrong.

CUBASE … Vive la différence!

Would love to have a simple pre-fader (post-pre & post-inserts) metering like Logic for example! ;(

What I have started doing to avoid hitting my plug-ins too hard is to always have a meter/fader in the first insert slot (a Melda plug-in, but there is also a Sonalksis free-g free fader for download on their site).

That meter reflects changes to the input trim in the rack of course.