Sample track playback not happenning

I bought a Yamaha MG10XU wich came with a Cubase 12 AI download. My experience with this so far has been nothing but frustration.
First, there is no MG10XU device listed. It took a ridiculous amount of time to eventually get the device recognized… and it’s a Yamaha product! I’m still not sure if it’s reading it properly.
Second, the manual is useless. All the terms are weird, there’s no simple “how to”, and the support videos are painful. I had to basically play around to start figuring a few things out.
Finally, this is where I’m stuck and need help…I recorded a sample track, just short vocals. I can play it back using the “audition” feature, so I know the connections are good, but when I play using the transport bar, nothing happens. The time line runs over the track, but nothing registers on the mixer and there is no sound. The track monitor is off, there’s nothing muted or on solo, it’s the only track, and I can sample the track… why won’t it play back? I tried the support chat contact, they said I’m not in the USA so they can’t help me.
This is typical of software these days… packed with features but just doing the most basic thing is seemingly impossible.

It sounds like you probably should have used a regular Audio Track rather than a Sampler Track. An Audio Track records & plays back audio the same way a tape recorder does. A Sampler Track plays audio only when triggered by incoming MIDI notes.

This is under the control of your OS and not Cubase (or any other DAW). Cubase will only see devices that the OS tells it exist. But if you post some screenshots folks here can tell you if things look right.

Unfortunately there are no tutorial style Cubase manuals, they are basically technical reference manuals and not particularly user friendly. I’d suggest you take a look at the Groove3 videos on Cubase they have several series that cover the basics. The most cost effective way to use them is to get an all access pass for a month (or two) and binge watch. Also don’t ignore videos for older versions, anything in them will generally still apply.

I like this guy’s videos in general but haven’t watched any of his on the basics

Welcome to the magical world of audio engineering which is and always has been very jargon heavy. DAWs are big complicated beasts and learning to use them is akin to learning a musical instrument. You’re still at the learning how to tune a guitar stage. You’ll get less frustrated if you’re realistic about the learning curve.

Finally keep in mind that Cubase AI is a stripped down version given away for free with other products. So there are lots of things that other versions can do which AI cannot. Here’s a comparison chart.

I’m 54 years old and have been preforming, recording and teaching for 40 years, so I don’t appreciate the “just learning to tune a guitar” comment…I’m actually a luthier. But Cubase IS new for me and it’s not user friendly. Maybe older musicians should just sit on the porch and let programmers link loops together and tell people that they’re musicians.

Great, you are an accomplished musician. The comment isn’t intended as an insult but rather as a point of comparison. Compare your guitar skills now with what they were when you were at the ‘learning to tune stage’ of guitar playing - big difference I’d expect. Same thing happens when learning a DAW it takes awhile to go from “how do you set this thing up?” (analogous to learning to tune) until you get to producing a mix you really like (analogous to being an accomplished musician).

I am impressed that you started teaching at 14 - that is literally when I was first learning how to tune a guitar (fwiw that was also before you were born).

Not in Cubase-land, that’s what Ableton exists for. Seriously out of all the DAWs Cubase is the most music theory aware. Again the AI version is going to be limited.

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Clearly came to the wrong place for help

Dude I’m just a fellow musician like you & I voluntarily spend some time answering questions here (because others did the same for me years ago and even now). I spent about 45 minutes of my own time giving you a fairly detailed description of why you are having the problems you described - which you seemed to have ignored.

I even searched around to find some videos you might find useful.

What are you expecting here? Have you even tried using an Audio Track instead of a Sampler Track? Have you checked out any of the videos? You seem upset that I said learning a DAW is similar in complexity to learning a musical instrument. Sorry if that makes you feel bad, but it’s still true.