VSTi automation sounding a little different when recorded

Example: I create some localized spike in volume automation to emphasize a few notes. I hit space, I hear the temporary rise and fall in volume.

I route the resulting sound to an audio track and record it (so that I can File > Export > Audio Mixdown afterwards). When I play this audio data, the quick rise in volume is a little less pronounced, it feels different.

Does that make sense? Is there something related to the number of parameter updates per second which makes the recording a little different from what you hear when you press space?

This is a subtle but disturbing problem: all the small performance details you put in are then modified by the workflow…


I also noticed different results when using the export function. You may try using realtime export, and then it should give the same results as playing it in realtime.

Can you make a recording of both and compare them? I know it’d probably involve extra equipment, but if I had a pound for every time people have said they think something is different and when direct measurement was made it turned out not to be the case, I’d have £7.