No Activation (Cubase 5 Update to 11)

I first used Cubase back in the Atari days ! The last version I used was Cub 5. I stopped because the support amongst other things became unworkable with. The program itself I always loved (maybe when it’s your first and only one the comfort zone will always be there). I went to other DAWS Ptools Reaper Studio 1 and then couldn’t afford Cubase my first love. I can now and have used the upgrade to Cubase 11 which looks majorly back a very good recording program.

I bought the USB and received the email codes download access and licence activation. Upon activation it simply says no licence is there. Gone through the forums and the volumes of activation paraphernalia. Still no joy. Was sent the same activation code 5 times. Of course same result Made a support ticket over a week ago. Nothing.

I mean really. Effectively I’m a new customer and this is how they are dealing with it. It looks like nothing has changed in the last dozen or so years in terms of support. It looks a fantastic program but one that Steinberg seems not to want me to use !! Strikes me that it should take all of 5 minutes to send me a code that actually works!?

Is there anyone on here from Steinberg who can do something about this ? or do I end up trying to get my money back and stick with my current daw?

Honestly talk about poor.

What exact product did you buy, and what exact product do you own? This sounds like you bought the wrong update.

Thanks for the reply. I updated from Cubase Pro 5.

Here’s the email from Steinberg:

 	Order Confirmation 

Order Number: 216147629 Order Date: 28/02/2021

Dear valued Customer,
Thank you for ordering from the Steinberg Online Shop. Below you will find a summary of your order.

Please retain this e-mail for your records. It serves as your receipt and contains information that will be helpful if you choose to reinstall your product(s) at a later date.

Qty Product Price

1 Cubase Pro 11 Update from Cubase (Pro) 4 / 5 / 6 / 6.5 / 7 / 7.5 / 8 / 8.5 / 9 / 10
macOS 11.0, macOS 10.14, macOS 10.15, Windows 10

110089942 Download £136.00

Download Access Code

Then I bought the USB elicencer, downloaded Download Asist / Library Asistant etc went to activate and nothing. Went through Online Synchronization & Maintenance but my licences and code aren’t going through

There was no Cubase Pro 5. There was Cubase 5, Cubase Studio… and a couple others… So which is it?

Both my USB elicenser and Soft Elicenser are greyed out and the message at the top says

‘No License To Upgrade Selectable’ - No license to upgrade found. Please connect a USB licenser (which I’ve done) which contains an appropriate license to upgrade

And, of course, you need a license on the dongle that can be updated.

Post a screenshot of your elicenser window…

Well must be Cubase 5. (I just called it pro 5 thinking that is in line with 11 pro). They’ve sent me an activation. They obviously still had my details and reg from before to issue me an activation code anyway, which does not work

That’s not actually how it works though.

ok ill get the screen shot

To be clear – you need a license on the USB key in order to update.

Right I’m confused here Steve. I found my old paperwork with my original details of my Cubase 5 (from Thomann) and went for the upgrade assuming they would have my details from way back which they did and then let me buy the upgrade. Which they have done.

Am I missing something here? How does it / should it work then?

You buy the update, and apply it to the already existing USB key. Do you not have the key that came with Cubase 5?

I bought the USB elicenser from Amazon

Your details are not checked, nor are they available to whomever you bought it from.

Jesus I’m trying to remember how this all works. My original 5 came on a CD and I don’t think recall they even had USB elincensers back then. I recall having a code but that was way way back since then I don’t even have the original CD but do have the original paperwork from Thomann when I bought it with other hardware at the time.

I’m more than confused now. How can Steinberg sell me an upgrade but have no records of my original purchase?

And where does this leave me now? With the upgrade charge and USB I’ve spent over £150 and sit here with nothing ??

Actually I do have my original Steinberg Product registration document.
Was Cubase 5.01 part 201189-06

I would open a new ticket now that you understand what’s going on better, saying what you just posted.

Depending on where you buy from, those who bought the wrong update can get a refund, since they can’t activate the license. But that is between you and the retailer.

Cubase had always run with an hardware key, as you will recall from the Atari days. I had cubase 6 artist and on the box, there was a hole with a window that contain the USB key. That’s the key I’m still using today because I upgrade from 6 to 10

Cubase 5 definitely used the USB-eLicenser. I still have my original one from a boxed Studio 5 purchase. If you registered your Cubase 5 license, that is the proof of ownership. When you log into your MySteinberg account is anything showing up? Basically, if you don’t have the USB-eLicenser with your active license for Cubase 5 plugged in when you enter your update code … the eLCC does not think there is an available license to update (and rightfully so).

Sooooo … what happened to your original USB-eLicenser? If it is lost and you have registered it, you might be able to recover your license. Many things are still unclear.


Well, this has been a saga sadly of my own making!

Correct, many things were unclear, particularly in my little befuddled mind! My not remembering anything about USB licenses was right and wrong. My intention to upgrade was because I had Cubase 5.1 . However my registration card that I still have, has on it Cubase 5.1. and upon checking my original invoice (from Thomann) in 2000 it made sense ??

BUT Cubase 5.1 came along in 2009 !

What I had all those years ago was Cubase ‘VST’ 5.1 (which my registration shows no evidence of!). And of course the reason for my lack of USB recollection was because there was no usb licenser back then. It was, as pointed out above, the hardware dongle that I now do recall having (thing that looks like the back of a monitor input adapter. Seem to recall it was where you put your midi cables through to get them into the pc , I think ! I have no idea what happened to that either.

Anyways of course that meant my upgrade from Cubase 5 .1 (2009) was never going to happen. A mad mix of ‘too many years ago’ and paperwork that didn’t have the most accurate of facts. And of course there is no upgrade from vst 5.1 .

Steinberg have been really good and gracious about it and after I explained this they’ve refunded me the upgrade cost, which has gone towards my buying the full Cubase 11 Pro on a deal from Amazon ! which I’m looking forward to installing very very much.

I can’t believe it was all that time ago, over 20 years ! Blimey.

Thanks for trying to help anyways