Intermittent loud noise burst

Recently, working on a large orchestral project (lots of Kontakt and EW Play instances) I would very occasionally get a sudden sustained burst of full scale noise. There’s a lot of sample playback going on, but in general my load/real-time/disk are all comfortably low. Buffer size if 256, ASIO guard is on “high”.

I know there could be a lot of different causes for something like that, but I wanted to get an idea if anyone had any insights on what actually is going on when that happens. Is it a low-level audio driver type thing, or a Cubase playback thing?

Do you by chance have any of the Melda vst plugins loaded?

I have had this happen once or twice in the several years I’ve been using Cubase Pro. I’m sorry to say I have no idea as to cause. I found no way to reproduce the error or any solution for it. Closing and reopening the project and/or re-starting Cubase got rid of it as I recall. Since that time, I’ve kept a Brickwall limiter in place as a Control Room insert. It’s a strange and scary thing. The channel meter is pegged and nothing stops the harsh way over-scale kind of “pink” noise. BTW, my projects are no orchestral, so, I don’t think this is related to the scale of the project.

If you get this error repeatedly I’d look at the VST that’s causing it, but, again, I found no solution for it and, thankful, it has happened, as I said, maybe twice in several years… I’ve not seen this issue mentioned in the forums as I recall. I think it’s perhaps a known issue but very rare. Sorry I can’t be more helpful other than to say I’ve seen this.

I had a similar thing when using a Synthmaster plugin. My suspicion (no more than that) is that it’s a plug-in thing and not a Cubase thing.

Putting a limiter on the master bus with zero gain and 0dB output is a wise idea in any event.

I’ve had it happen, too, just a handful of times over a year. Scary, but I have no clue as to whether it’s a plug-in thing or Cubase.

I’ll follow up on my previous post in case it’s of use to anyone else.

When I upgraded to Cubase 10 I was getting random bursts of static, and the meters would periodically peg out of nowhere. CPU load was almost nothing, memory usage the same, no stress on the system at all. Following the principles of Debugging 101, I naturally looked at “what’s the last thing that changed,” which was my install of 10 on this laptop. I thus mistakenly thought Cubase was the culprit. However, I have Cubase 10 on two other computers, and I wasn’t getting the problem on them, just this new install.

Fast forward…

I own the Melda plugin for comparing reference mixes (I forget the name), and I had it as a standard insert on my master bus. This laptop was a new Windows and Cubase install for a keyboard workstation. I thought I’d installed everything correctly, but I’d forgotten to apply the license for the Melda plugin. I thought I recalled something like this being part of the copy protection, so I applied the license and sure enough, the problem went away. By the way, this symptom happened even when the plugin wasn’t active - that was the disconcerting part as far as I’m concerned.

So, in my case at least, it was in fact a plugin that was causing the problem. I understand and accept copy protection schemes (I pay the bills as a programmer), but if copy protection code is a part of the signal chain then I don’t know what else is being altered, licence or not. They may be fine plugins and do a great job for most people but simply put, I no longer trust the plugin as I don’t know what else it’s doing to my signal chain. I’ve since uninstalled Melda from all computers and have never had this problem again.