Sound card release on networked PCs

I’m having problems getting Dorico to release the sound card on networked PCs in a school latest version of Windows 10). I’ve checked the ‘release device when Dorico 3 is in the background’ box and am using the ASIO drivers for the sound cards (Presonus Audiobox on some machines and M-Audio on others). We are having two issues:

  1. When a user logs out and another subsequently logs in the second user is unable to open Dorico. Nothing happens when the program is started. My IT team think this is because Dorico thinks the first user is still using the sound card, and I’m inclined to believe them given the second issue. A re-start usually fixes the problem but is a pain!

  2. Dorico sometimes doesn’t release the sound card when in the background, notably with online videos and particularly with PowerPoint videos. I also have this problem on my non-networked laptop. Only a restart fixes the confused sound card.

Is there a way to fix these issues? We have just installed the latest update to Dorico 3.

Thank you

When the first user logs out, are they actually quitting Dorico, or is it left running? That might not help. However, I would advise against using the ‘Release device when Dorico is in the background’ option in Dorico’s Preferences dialog: that can actually cause more problems than it solves.

Yes, they are quitting Dorico.

If we don’t use the release option, it becomes impossible to move between programmes and retain audio (e.g YouTube for transcribing or even watching your (excellent) instruction videos). Is there another way around that problem?

What you describe sounds more like a driver issue.

Dorico’s audio engine is not aware if the computer is on a network or not and does not care. Also multi user shall be no problem, as long as the user that logs out also shuts down Dorico beforehand. I’ve just tested that here on my home laptop with Win10. Created a test user and switched back and forth, no problem, Dorico always produced audio immediately, but I was using the Generic Low Latency Driver.

I suggest you also try with the Generic Low Latency Driver and see if that works for you/your students. If it does then it is really an issue with the Presonus/M-Audio drivers.

Further, in regards to listening to YouTube in parallel to Dorico, that is a question of the multi-client capability of the audio driver. The Generic Low Latency Driver is capable as long as you untick the option for “Allow ASIO host exclusive acccess” in the Device Control Panel. One of our instruction videos is dealing with playback issues in Dorico and also describes that.

Thanks, I will try the different driver. However, Sibelius isn’t having these issues using the same drivers so could it be something to do with the way Dorico is using them?

Dorico and Sibelius are very different applications that make use of the hardware in your computer differently. Dorico has more in common with Cubase when it comes to the use of audio hardware than it does with Sibelius.

So, we moved to the Generic Low Latency Driver and this has sorted the sound card release issues, thank you. However, we are now experiencing problems with stability with the Generic driver. Sometimes it just crashes for no apparent reason, even on small, piano-only projects. You sometimes even hear it winding down like an old record player. The computer requires a restart to repair. What might be causing this?

That sounds like a sample rate problem. Is it possible that you have other audio applications on your computer that could be changing the sample rate for your sound hardware? You may find that going to Edit > Device Setup and selecting a different value from the ‘Sample rate’ drop-down, then waiting a moment and re-selecting the original value again is sufficient to restore normal operation.

Also, if there are crashes, I’d like to see crash dumps. Therefore, do ‘Help > Create Diagnostics Report’ which silently puts a zip file on your desktop. Please attach here. Thanks

There are other audio applications on the computer, but not running when the crashes occur (or in the same login session).

I’ve attached a crash dump, supplied by our IT team. I hope it is helpful

Thank you.
Dorico3.exe.9184.dmp.7z (571 KB)

I can’t make any sense of that crash log, unfortunately, though I will ask Paul to take a look at it. However, it does appear that you’re still running Dorico 3.0.10, so a good next step would be to install the Dorico 3.1 update, which you can get here.