No sound on some newly-added instruments

All of a sudden, any keyboard instruments I add have no sound, also other keyboard instruments, harp, alto & tenor saxophone, singers, contrabassoon (and possibly others). I have spent quite some time trying many things such as re-applying the playback template, resetting the various options to factory, checking which instruments display the problem, etc. If I open a pre-existing project containing a piano part, it plays OK. If I add another piano part to that project, no sound is produced. Copying and pasting from a sounding keyboard to a non-sounding one still results in no sound.

Does anyone have any ideas as to how I can rectify this situation? It is puzzling me. I can have two projects open, one with a pre-existing piano part and the other with a newly added one. The pre-existing piano will play while the newly added one will not. The same for singers, harp, etc. Most of the woodwinds, brass and strings seem unaffected. I have tried (many times) re-starting Dorico and rebooting the computer (you can see details of my computer setup by clicking on my name). I am hoping that a fix might be as simple as deleting one of the Dorico preferences/settings files, but at this stage I don’t know. All suggestions will be welcomed.

Immediately before this problem occurred I had imported into Dorico a musicxml file which was exported from Sibelius after being imported into Sibelius from a “.opt” file created by PhotoScore & NotateMe Lite 2020. If this turns out to be the cause of the problem, it is the first time that I have had any trouble with such a procedure.

I have tried running the plugin-presets-installer-mac which @dspreadbury posted in After updating to Cubase 13 no HSSE in Dorico anymore .
That made no difference.

Does it make any difference if you choose from the menu Play > Playback Template and reapply the default template?

I have tried all of the Playback templates, including Silence (and changing back, of course). No difference.
In the attached file I created a new Solo Piano project, input the notes, added the Flute and copied and pasted the notes into the Flute. The Flute plays back, but the Piano does not.

No sound.dorico (1019.1 KB)

As I mentioned earlier, if I open an earlier project which has a piano in it, the piano plays back OK.

Also, I have tried changing the Piano to other keyboard instruments. None of them produce any sound, except Hurdy-Gurdy.

When I open your project and switch to play mode, I find that the flute and piano are assigned channels 1 and 2, respectively, of VST 02. But when I open the VST, I find that slot 1 has loaded Flute Combi and slot 2 is empty. What happens if you manually load a piano into slot 2?

That works, but I have to do it manually every time I add a piano (and, presumably, any of the other instruments which are similarly affected).
I am puzzled as to why this has changed. I generally leave the playback side of things alone to the point where on the odd occasion when I have experimented with playback, I cannot remember ever saving any changes as a default.

I opened an earlier file with a piano part in it (as accompaniment to a solo trombone). Both parts played back as they should. When I changed the piano to harpsichord, only the trombone played back. When I changed the harpsichord back to piano, still only the trombone played back. I noticed that each time the keyboard instrument was changed, a new empty slot was created in VST. When I changed the trombone part to tenor saxophone, a new empty VST slot was created, and I had no playback sound at all. When I changed the tenor saxophone back to trombone, a new VST slot was created but with a trombone in it, and I had trombone playback but no accompaniment. As well as most of the keyboard instruments, tenor saxophone is one of the instruments which behaves in this odd manner, namely a VST slot is created but no instrument sound is loaded into that slot. Re-applying the Playback Template does not put an instrument into the empty slot.
Load Sounds For Unassigned Instruments has no effect.

Re-installing Dorico did not fix the issue: when creating a Piano - empty VST slot with no sound loaded.

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I downloaded your project as well and upon loading, yes, I see the same, the flute sound is loaded but nothing for the piano. However, when I then reapply the playback template, both, the flute and piano sound do get loaded.
You mentioned that other forum thread, may I ask you to follow that once more again? Also, did you restart Dorico after executing that?

Yes, I did that again and restarted Dorico after that, and I also re-applied the Playback Template.
There is still no change.

If I manually load a Piano sound into the empty VST slot, it plays back and saves with the file.
So far, so good.
If I re-apply the playback template, it empties that slot - back to where I started.

In case it helps in determining the cause of the problem, here is a list of all the instruments for which an empty VST slot is created with no sound loaded. There might be some sort of pattern which the devs can discern.


Electric Organ
Electric Piano
Ondes Martenot
Synth Bass

Fretted Instruments:
I tried about 1/3 at random - all of them were affected

All except Hurdy-Gurdy

Gamelan Percussion:

Orff Instruments:
Descant Recorder
Soprano Recorder

Pitched Percussion:
Antique Cymbals
Bell Lyre
Glass Harmomica
Hammered Dulcimer
Steel Drum
Steel Pan
Tuned Gongs



String Bass
Tambura/Tanpura (Male & Female)
Upright Bass

All Recorders
All Saxophones
Tin Whistle
Pan Flute

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It definitely seems as if Dorico can’t find the HALion Sonic Selection sounds. Did you recently install any updates to the sounds via Steinberg Download Assistant?

Not that I can recall.
Is there a file somewhere which I can delete to let Dorico recreate a clean default? Or is it not that simple?

If you don’t have the updated HALion Sonic Selection sounds installed, then having installed the fix for that would prevent Dorico from being able to load those sounds, so it might be a good idea to install the updated sounds now. In Steinberg Download Assistant, find Cubase Pro 13, and download the HALion Sonic Selection – Content (recommended) download choice.

Thanks, Daniel.
I’ll give that a try.

Success (almost complete).
After downloading and installing the HALion Sonic Selection – Content (recommended) as you described, I created a project which used Piano, Harpsichord, Alto Saxophone, Pan Flute and Alto Recorder - all of which were on the “empty VST slot” list.
It did not work for singers though, either by adding a vocal ensemble or by adding individual singers separately.
Should I now run the plugin-presets-installer-mac?

The problem I described earlier might have existed for a while without my noticing it. Recently I have been working solely on projects with orchestral instrumentation (or touching up existing piano/vocal projects) and have not done anything for some weeks, at least, which required adding keyboard or singers. All the other instruments in the list are ones which either I have not worked with for a long time or have not needed to use.

You might try reinstalling the Olympus Choir Micro sound content from the Dorico Pro 5 product in SDA.

I’ve reinstalled the Olympus Choir Micro sound content but the singers are still not showing up in the VST slots.
Should I try reinstalling the HALion Sonic 7.0.20 - Instrument (recommended)?

This is what I see when I go to Endpoint setup:

Changing the Expression map for the singers to Default makes no difference,

No, reinstalling HALion Sonic won’t help, I don’t think. The issue is that Dorico’s unable to find the content. Could you run Steinberg Library Manager and check that the Olympus Choir Micro content shows up there with no issues?

Here is a screen shot of Steinberg Library Manager.

As a test, I created a new project containing only a soprano singer. Its VST slot was empty. After I loaded “Sustain Ah” from the Olympus Micro program list (which is the sound I had used in previous projects some months ago), saved the file, quit Dorico and re-opened the project, the sound was still in the VST slot and played back. Re-applying the Playback Template emptied the VST slot. This happened with HSSE+HSO (Pro) and with HSSE+HSO+GASE (Pro).

When opening a previous project containing voices and which played back properly (their VST slots all showed “Sustain Ah”) and then re-applying the Playback Template, all of the singers’ VST slots were emptied. As with the newly-created project, it was possible to re-load the sounds into the VST slots and those sounds survived after saving and re-opening.

So, it looks like Olympus Choir Micro is working. To my mind, what is not functioning normally is whatever procedure Dorico uses to match up an instrument to a (factory default) sound in the Playback Template. I don’t know whether it is something that I have done inadvertently or a setting that has become corrupted somehow. If perchance I might have accidentally “broken” a default for something used as commonly as keyboards and singers, that still leaves all the other affected instruments in the long list I posted earlier. Most of them I have never even explored, let alone used.

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Now that you’ve installed the updated HALion Sonic Selection sounds, I think you’ll find that most or all of those instruments will now load sounds of one sort or another. The problem with Olympus Choir Micro remains to be solved.

Thank you for your help so far, Daniel.

For the time being, I just have to remember to not apply a Playback Template after manually loading the Olympus Choir Micro sounds into the singers’ VST slots. Apart from that small impost on my brain, it looks like I can return to normal operations.

Out of curiosity, do you know what should appear (as a default?) in the VST slot when a singer is selected in Setup?

I’m afraid nothing shows up (now). That might be because of all the changes that happened lately (HSSE moved to HALion Sonic, etc…)
If I ask Dorico to load HALion Sonic (or HALion) and apply the factory playback template, nothing shows up.
You probably need to add the Olympus Micro endpoints in a custom playback template in order to load automatically voices with that Playback template. As I use NotePerformer, I did not notice that glitch.


On Windows, if I add single or section players for SATB singers and apply the HSSE+HSO (Pro) playback template, Dorico loads the Sustain Ah program from Olympus Choir Micro into the appropriate slots in the HALion Sonic VST.

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