No Sound (or Barely any) from Double Bass

I’m currently arranging a commission for my choir director. She asked me to attempt using strings so I started this. When playing back to check my work, I noticed that I couldn’t hear the double bass at all. Is there any specific reason for this? I have attached a file of both the pdf and the mp3 to prove this. Please note I just started this yesterday so it’s nowhere near finished. The Last Goodbye Arrangement.pdf (202.8 KB)

The project itself (cut down to the first four bars, say) would be much more useful than a PDF and an MP3.

There’s all manner of stuff you may have done to give this result. It’s equally possible that you’ve done nothing at all to create this result, and it’s bad programming or bad design from whatever playback library you’re using. We can’t possibly know without either inputting some of this music again, or seeing the actual file.

(See Four simple guidelines to help us help you)

I’m using HALion, it was included with Dorico. I will send a dorico file of the project later today (I’m not at my personal computer at the moment). Also thanks for the guidelines, I hadn’t come across those previously.

Did you load the sounds manually or use a playback template? I suspect you may have loaded the sounds manually, but the double bass patch uses the mod wheel controller for volume. Try doing Play > Playback Template to re-apply the template (which will set up HALion with the correct settings).

I haven’t changed anything with the sounds, I couldn’t figure out how to do so.

As Leo says, it would be more informative if you could attach the project, or a cut down version of it to find out what is going on here.

Did you use any expression/mod wheel? HSO instruments are defaulted quiet unless you roll that wheel up a bit as you play the midi notes in.

The Last Goodbye.dorico (1.7 MB)

@pianoleo @PaulWalmsley

A) You have no dynamics in the entire piece. What dynamic levels/balance do you want?

B) You have the double basses at the exact same level as all other strings in the HALion mixer. If that’s not good, turn them up.

C) You have the double basses at the exact same level as all other strings in the Dorico mixer. If that’s not good, turn them up.

There are other things you can do to get a good balance too, but I’d start with the simple obvious ones above first.

Thanks for the feedback I completely understand this, but the problem is that I can’t hear Double Bass at all, even by itself.

Solo them in the Dorico mixer to hear them. They are there. If they are too low, try any of the above 3 suggestions I made. If that still doesn’t work there are other options, but try those 3 first.

Hi Ian – I listened to the score you provided and the original audio export. In both the double bass is clearly audible and there is no significant difference between them so I’m not convinced there is a genuine problem here. If I mute the double bass in the score, it’s obvious to my ears that it’s missing.

Try changing the display in Write mode from Full Score to Double Bass which is probably the easiest way to automatically solo the DB if you’re fairly new to Dorico. Are you sure you really can’t hear anything? If you can’t, something in the configuration must have been accidentally changed though everything looks fine here!

I might just add that the volume does seem slightly lower with the double bass so in a mix it’s maybe not so easy to pick out. But at least heard on its own, I can’t identify a problem – it’s easy enough to raise the channel volume a bit if you feel it’s needed.

Hello Paul,

This is for me the first time on a forum. I hope, I do it the right way. I try Dorico SE on a yogabook lenovo, but I don’t have any sound. I did follow the instructions on youtube, but it didn’t solve the problem. Also the only frequenzy I see is 48KHz. can you help me to get sound at my dorico installation? Thanks in advance! herman from the netherlands.

What are you using to listen to the output from Dorico?

I suggest you try listening to the left and right channels separately to see whether you can hear the double bass on one or both of them . Perhaps there is something in your playback set up that cancels out the low bass (e.g. a phase reversal) in stereo.



Unfortunately, I don’t have any super good equipment as I’m still just a Sophomore in High School. I recently got a PC in February 2021. I haven’t had the chance to get a monitor or high end speakers so I’ve been stuck with a pretty basic Roku TV.

I hope you understand,
Ian Hook

Hey! I’m not being critical about your gear, and I’m sorry if it came over that way! :smiley: I’m just suggesting that the bass may be there but not getting through to the loudspeakers. Are you able to turn off one or other of the channels, to see if the bass improves? Generally headphones have better bass than low end speakers, and can plug right into the back of the computer.


Okay, good to know! I have not but I messed around with mixing a bit and it sounds a lot better to me. I’ll definitely check out the channels though.

Sorry to hear you’re having problems with playback, Herman. Perhaps you might try downloading and installing the FlexASIO driver and then choosing that under ASIO Driver in Edit > Device Setup in Dorico.

David’s right – it could be that your audio equipment is rather weak in the bass and it genuinely is hard to hear. I’m pretty sure you haven’t done anything wrong as it’s fine with my headphones and speakers