Parts playing out of time.


I have a SATB project with a piano.

For some reason the piano plays a little earlier than the vocal parts.

Any ideas?


My understanding is that it is the vocals playing a little behind. The vocal samples for some reason seem to have a delay of sorts in the voice itself. You can mess with “breath” and some other controls to try and improve it. Beyond that, I do not believe there is much of a fix, aside from getting new voice samples.


Hi Robby.

Oh that’s a bit sad.

I’m using the sound functions that came with Dorico: Halion Sonic SE 2 Artist Library.
Voice uses ‘Aah To Ooc Choir Note Exp’
Piano uses ‘Yamaha S90ES piano’

I’ve captured the timing issue in the attachment.


It’s the sounds. The choir patches are flat and slow (which, of course, is every choir director’s dream come true if your dreams suck). Best bet is to use another library.

What I personally do is swap the vocal sounds for a wind quintet (soprano = flute, alto = clarinet, tenor = oboe, bass = bassoon, though a low tenor part will often be too low for the HSO oboe patch).

Has any thought been given to extending the range of the HALion vocal samples better to reflect the actual ranges of live singers? The current, limited ranges are strange.

Pardon me if I dont understand your setup. If you are using an external synth for the piano, cant you make it delay its output?


The Yamaha is part of Halion Sonic SE 2.

If one has (e.g.) Bidule available, it’s possible to insert a Delay Line for the piano in the Mixer. 80ms seems to be appropriate.

Such vocal delay is very annoying and I would say not really acceptable for a PRO Application. Yes, Daniel, I could change a vocal sounds to woodwinds, any way I am arranging for piano, woodwinds AND choir. Everybody who tries to deal with vocal and piano would say - it is a nonsense. I understand that there is nothing wrong with Dorico it self, because Dorico just reads a provided sample, any way I still wonder why Steinberg doesn’t take care about that…

Dear fratveno, could you tell me please in detail how you setup this delay of 80 ms? I guess I need to do it for all instruments in my score in order to have a more or less acceptable playback sync…

Although I’m not using Halion, I have the same issue with certain vocal/choir samples. My solution is to go to playmode, grab all the blocks in all the relevant tracks and drag them a bit earlier.

Thank you Ian. I will try it:)

I regularly use NotePerformer 3 for voices. It sounds closer to a real voice and does not suffer from the timing issue you mention, even when used with another instrument set for piano (although it also includes a piano). It does cost extra money, though ($129 US), but is well worth the price in my opinion and in many others, too. If you are interested, you can download a 30-day trial version for free.

Thank you Mike, I tried NotePerformer already. It is a great product, any way some instruments like piano which I use a lot sound for me not so good, clear and rich, like Halion. But I am sure there are other opinions as well:)

There are other Choir sounds in the HALion palette. You may get better results with those.

Dear Ian Lawson, could you tell me please how you was able to select a whole choir part at once? When I select one of these blocks in play mode and press cmd+A, I was expecting Dorico will select all blocks at once, but it doesn’t. Thank you in advance

You should be able to use marquee selection, i.e. click and drag.

Thank you Daniel for such a quick response. To be sure I understand you right: I have to zoom out till I see a whole piece, select all blocks with mouse, then zoom in again to work with? If yes, cmd+A would be still a much easier way. Like a Piano Roll in Logic…etc…

The other option would be to select the music in Write mode, then switch to Play mode, where you should see that everything is now correctly selected. Then you can drag them all.

Thank you:)