Output volume is lower than input

Cubase user for like 15 years at least. Never had this one.

OSX High Sierra - Mac mini

Using Cubase 10, my output volume is around 3db lower than the input. I can watch the input track meter next to the master stereo out and the stereo out will be around 3db lower. Everything everywhere i can find is set to 0db. input is a dry guitar signal. looking at the peaks on the meters, input will be like -5db, and peak on the stereo out will be like -8db.

no effects at all on either the input track or the stereo out

i dont get what is happening here.

Pan law - available since at least 15 years and longer.

thank you. did eventually figure it out. i have no idea why this was never an issue on other set ups. Anyway, good to go.