MIDI notes too early

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Conman
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Conman »

Toronja wrote:I have solved it (at least for the moment)
As the problem principally was the Metronome, I decided to use audio files, if you play with the default one you have the notes too early, but if you create 2 audio files with some space at the begin (depending how early are your notes recorded) you can record midi tracks with your metronome without problems.
I upload the wav files I use for this, you can change it from TRANSPORT - METRONOME SETUP
Perhaps it helps somebody else

Pablo
Interesting. A while ago someone posted that they always left lead-in time at the beginning of Projects. Forget why but it may have been relevant to this.
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Conman »

niles wrote:
LeVzi wrote: So to rectify the problem, either a) something needs to be done to compensate for the latency in Cubase or b) I need to get a much lower latency myself by dropping my buffer right down just to record MIDI ?
Option B, hands down!
I think I tried pointing out this mix-up between Latency and Quantise some weeks ago.
High latency does not equate to high (or NO) quantise. I know from my old Emu card that some driver versions can get erratic at very high latencies.

LOW latency (as low as you can go) and NO quantise.
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LeVzi
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by LeVzi »

OK I tried it at 2.4ms latency, and results were a lot better. Still early (ish) but not the 50ms delay there was before.

But thats 1 instrument with nothing else playing. What happens when I want to record while playing along to the track ? At that buffer size, the CPU will overload.
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Split
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Re: MIDI notes too early

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LeVzi wrote:OK I tried it at 2.4ms latency, and results were a lot better. Still early (ish) but not the 50ms delay there was before.

But thats 1 instrument with nothing else playing. What happens when I want to record while playing along to the track ? At that buffer size, the CPU will overload.
I have always understood when playing live into Cubase, be it midi or audio you need the lowest latency possible for best results. If you have plugins or other things that have a reported delay this will raise the latency, you can check how much (in samples) in the plugin info, If you have a complex mix running it will be impossible to achieve without resorting to doing a quick mixdown, switch everything off adjust the soundcards buffer and record your track, you can try constrain delay compensation but depending on where the plugins (ones that incur a delay) are, it may or may not help.
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Toronja
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Toronja »

I have this problem with cubase hard (mr 816), empty projects and 256 buffer, so...If this configuration is no compatible..I don't nkow what to think
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LeVzi
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Re: MIDI notes too early

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Split wrote:
LeVzi wrote:OK I tried it at 2.4ms latency, and results were a lot better. Still early (ish) but not the 50ms delay there was before.

But thats 1 instrument with nothing else playing. What happens when I want to record while playing along to the track ? At that buffer size, the CPU will overload.
I have always understood when playing live into Cubase, be it midi or audio you need the lowest latency possible for best results. If you have plugins or other things that have a reported delay this will raise the latency, you can check how much (in samples) in the plugin info, If you have a complex mix running it will be impossible to achieve without resorting to doing a quick mixdown, switch everything off adjust the soundcards buffer and record your track, you can try constrain delay compensation but depending on where the plugins (ones that incur a delay) are, it may or may not help.

When I am testing , I am not using a plug-in. It's just a blank MIDI Track set to receive inputs from my MIDI controller.
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Split
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Split »

It does seem like for some people something is amiss somewhere?

At 2.4ms is that combined input and output latency, how early are the notes?
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LeVzi
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by LeVzi »

Split wrote:It does seem like for some people something is amiss somewhere?

At 2.4ms is that combined input and output latency, how early are the notes?

It was 2.4ms input 2.5ms output, thats as low it will go without messing up.

The notes were anywhere between 1/32th and 1/64th early, extremely rarely on the beat, pretty consistent and if I was to move all the notes 1/32 later, it would start to even out on the beat.
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Split »

so that's a 4.9ms round trip, midi in to vsti out (speakers) plus hidden buffers and .34ms per meter, ear from speaker.

Plus any delay from key press to midi note generated and any other hidden processing delays.

A 64th at 120 BPM is equivalent to 31.25ms given that most very good players play around 15-20 ms of a beat (when doing well) and add in the latency of say (for arguments sake of 10ms after factoring in estimates for unknown latencies) and the fact that changing your latency directly has a major influence on your reported midi timing. I think it figures that being within a 32nd is actually quite good!

It's also interesting to note that as midi is a serial data stream, each midi event can only be transmitted one after another. It takes around 0.32ms per midi serial byte to be transmitted (best time) It would possibly be wise to make sure no controller info is being transmitted from the keyboard or other devices on a particular midi cable, such as aftertouch etc.
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Conman
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Conman »

LeVzi wrote:
Split wrote:It does seem like for some people something is amiss somewhere?

At 2.4ms is that combined input and output latency, how early are the notes?

It was 2.4ms input 2.5ms output, thats as low it will go without messing up.

The notes were anywhere between 1/32th and 1/64th early, extremely rarely on the beat, pretty consistent and if I was to move all the notes 1/32 later, it would start to even out on the beat.

You're playing early.

Increase the latency to between 5 and 8ms (normal real instrument latency is around 12 to 15).

Practise to a mechanical or phone metronome.
Can you hear the metronome clearly as you play? If so, you're not on the beat.
When practice timing, especially drums, is perfect it should be hard to actually hear the metronome as the striking of the drum etc will mask it.
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Re: MIDI notes too early

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Split wrote: ... It takes around 0.32ms per midi serial byte to be transmitted (best time). It would possibly be wise to make sure no controller info is being transmitted from the keyboard or other devices on a particular midi cable, such as aftertouch etc.
What a great suggestion, thanks! My acoustic piano patch on the Motif has aftertouch transmitted. I have no idea what that would be for, and I think I'll probably not miss it if I turn it off. With MIDI timing (apparently), every little thing helps!
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Split wrote:... so that's a 4.9ms round trip, midi in to vsti out (speakers) plus hidden buffers and .34ms per meter, ear from speaker.
Split, can you please explain why you are (?) including the buffer latency in to get that 4.9 msec? I always thought it was an A/D buffer, and so would have thought it wouldn't be part of the calculation for MIDI in?

Thanks as always, JMS (Jedi Master Split :D )
Alexis

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-Get variable-tempo audio to follow a grid here,
-Replacing freely-timed section into a variable tempo project

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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by LeVzi »

Conman wrote:
LeVzi wrote:
Split wrote:It does seem like for some people something is amiss somewhere?

At 2.4ms is that combined input and output latency, how early are the notes?

It was 2.4ms input 2.5ms output, thats as low it will go without messing up.

The notes were anywhere between 1/32th and 1/64th early, extremely rarely on the beat, pretty consistent and if I was to move all the notes 1/32 later, it would start to even out on the beat.

You're playing early.

Increase the latency to between 5 and 8ms (normal real instrument latency is around 12 to 15).

Practise to a mechanical or phone metronome.
Can you hear the metronome clearly as you play? If so, you're not on the beat.
When practice timing, especially drums, is perfect it should be hard to actually hear the metronome as the striking of the drum etc will mask it.

I can "hear" the metronome, as when playing along to one, you hear it of sorts it's second nature to play with it. I am a classically trained pianist so I learnt to play along with one a long time ago. I am not saying I am perfect, but I am definitely better than that. The major difference is when playing a piano to a metronome it's when the hammer hits the string the sound comes. I am wondering if the velocity setting of the keys has a part to play, maybe I could lower the sensitivity of the keys so they don't "hammer" too early. The velocity setting is set to very sensitive.
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Split
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Re: MIDI notes too early

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alexis wrote:
Split wrote: ... It takes around 0.32ms per midi serial byte to be transmitted (best time). It would possibly be wise to make sure no controller info is being transmitted from the keyboard or other devices on a particular midi cable, such as aftertouch etc.
What a great suggestion, thanks! My acoustic piano patch on the Motif has aftertouch transmitted. I have no idea what that would be for, and I think I'll probably not miss it if I turn it off. With MIDI timing (apparently), every little thing helps!
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Split wrote:... so that's a 4.9ms round trip, midi in to vsti out (speakers) plus hidden buffers and .34ms per meter, ear from speaker.
Split, can you please explain why you are (?) including the buffer latency in to get that 4.9 msec? I always thought it was an A/D buffer, and so would have thought it wouldn't be part of the calculation for MIDI in?

Thanks as always, JMS (Jedi Master Split :D )
Cause I think (I have no proof) that it would be correct, to keep the timing correct with recorded audio at the same time.

For argument's sake, say the input latency was 1 second for audio and 0 seconds for midi and the output latency is 1 second for both, then the midi out would be sent back 1 second before the audio.

I have never watched Star Wars, any version all the way through :lol:

I must add... I have no Idea how USB midi works!!!
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by alexis »

Split wrote:
Split wrote:... so that's a 4.9ms round trip, midi in to vsti out (speakers) plus hidden buffers and .34ms per meter, ear from speaker.
alexis wrote:Split, can you please explain why you are (?) including the buffer latency in to get that 4.9 msec? I always thought it was an A/D buffer, and so would have thought it wouldn't be part of the calculation for MIDI in?

Thanks as always, JMS (Jedi Master Split :D )
Cause I think (I have no proof) that it would be correct, to keep the timing correct with recorded audio at the same time...
Well, it's very interesting you say that because ... on my system, audio and (USB!) MIDI is sent from my analogue synth to be "printed" on their respective Cubase tracks within 1 msec or two of each other. The amount varies with each measurement, but consistently it's in that range. It's worth pointing out that the USB MIDI doesn't go through my interface, but goes into the computer itself, and is then routed over to Cubase.

I never knew whether their respective arrival on Cubase tracks within a msec or two of each other was coincidence, or meant to be/instant karma, but I was pretty pleased that it wasn't off by an order of magnitude more!

Signed,

Easily satisfied and amused
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Conman »

I never knew whether their respective arrival on Cubase tracks within a msec or two of each other was coincidence, or meant to be/instant karma, but I was pretty pleased that it wasn't off by an order of magnitude more
Shouldn't be. The method should allow for note placement at pretty much real life tolerances and more to quite a high degree of accuracy although different systems will have a bearing on the exact Nth degree.
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by LeVzi »

The thing that puzzles me about this whole MIDI too early problem is that if it was occasional or even 50% of the time i'd put that down to human error.

But the fact that over 90% of the notes are the same distance away from the beat, to me at least, suggests that something is causing it.

Maybe Cubase needs a MIDI record latency compensation control so it acts like Ableton. At the very least it needs to be acknowledged and looked into by the tech's, although I am pretty sure they are aware of it by now.
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by alexis »

Conman wrote:
I never knew whether their respective arrival on Cubase tracks within a msec or two of each other was coincidence, or meant to be/instant karma, but I was pretty pleased that it wasn't off by an order of magnitude more
Shouldn't be. The method should allow for note placement at pretty much real life tolerances and more to quite a high degree of accuracy although different systems will have a bearing on the exact Nth degree.
Conman - to make sure I understand - are you saying your interface, and most, print a MIDI and audio note simultaneously on Cubase when a hardware synth key is struck?

If so, alas for me. I don't mind shifting tracks here and there to compensate. But I was just wondering if I was understanding you correctly.

Thanks!
Alexis

-Cubase "Safe Start Mode" (CTRL-ALT-SHIFT)
-Get variable-tempo audio to follow a grid here,
-Replacing freely-timed section into a variable tempo project

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Conman
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Conman »

alexis wrote:
Conman wrote:
I never knew whether their respective arrival on Cubase tracks within a msec or two of each other was coincidence, or meant to be/instant karma, but I was pretty pleased that it wasn't off by an order of magnitude more
Shouldn't be. The method should allow for note placement at pretty much real life tolerances and more to quite a high degree of accuracy although different systems will have a bearing on the exact Nth degree.
Conman - to make sure I understand - are you saying your interface, and most, print a MIDI and audio note simultaneously on Cubase when a hardware synth key is struck?

If so, alas for me. I don't mind shifting tracks here and there to compensate. But I was just wondering if I was understanding you correctly.

Thanks!
If your latency is low, pretty much, yes. Or they should do. Compensation should, of course, be done via quantisation. If you're recording freely ie: Q off then, besides player inaccuracy, there may be variables but USUALLY they should not be that noticeable. I'm very accurate at playing notes in with Q off, which I often do, but any variables I can mostly put down to ME. Occasionally, once or twice a year, I will notice something amiss that wasn't me. I put it down to the usual computer glitches. If it was more often then I'd raise my own questions.
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Conman »

LeVzi wrote:The thing that puzzles me about this whole MIDI too early problem is that if it was occasional or even 50% of the time i'd put that down to human error.

But the fact that over 90% of the notes are the same distance away from the beat, to me at least, suggests that something is causing it.

Maybe Cubase needs a MIDI record latency compensation control so it acts like Ableton. At the very least it needs to be acknowledged and looked into by the tech's, although I am pretty sure they are aware of it by now.
I'll ask again. When you play with a metronome can you hear it? If you can then at quantise off you will see notes that are out. Most band players DO play early because they are able to hear themselves better (I think it's an effect called "precession"), they perceive they are louder. This is what leads most bands to gradually speed up on some music as they all play early to compensate.
And being out and early 90% of the time means that it may well be the player and not the machine. Machines are generally not that accurately inaccurate.
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by LeVzi »

No , I can't hear the metronome. In fact I had to stop at one point to check I was still in time with it.

I use a 2 bar intro to get the timing right then go from there, and I only examine the MIDI recorded from about 4 bars into it, which gives me time to adjust if needed.

This again draws me back to the Ableton recording vs Cubase's. If I was that early, wouldn't I be early there too ?
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Conman »

No , I can't hear the metronome. In fact I had to stop at one point to check I was still in time with it.
Now that. Is a very strange statement indeed. Funny too.
Just the first sentence would have done. :mrgreen:
All I can think is that Ableton implies some sort of quantise that is coarser than Cubase's even when the quantise is set to "off" in Ableton.
If the same applied to Cubase it would pull you off a 128th triplet (approximately & effectively quantise "off").
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by LeVzi »

Conman wrote:
No , I can't hear the metronome. In fact I had to stop at one point to check I was still in time with it.
Now that. Is a very strange statement indeed. Funny too.
Just the first sentence would have done. :mrgreen:
All I can think is that Ableton implies some sort of quantise that is coarser than Cubase's even when the quantise is set to "off" in Ableton.
If the same applied to Cubase it would pull you off a 128th triplet (approximately & effectively quantise "off").
Have you never started playing something and just gone off in a world of your own ? I do it all the time, start playing something I know, and then branch off into something completely different and forget what it is I was doing.

It's at it's worst when I load up the Korg M1 plug-in and just go off on one with that. I can be there for ages, played loads and not actually recorded or done any work on the project I was on. :lol:
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by EdCubasero »

Oh..another midi early thread? It goes moving around on the forum all the time. Well, lets bring it up. Hopefully we got some news some day that somebody at Steinberg is at least listenning and maybe, like in our wetest dreams, planning to do something about it. :)
Conman wrote: All I can think is that Ableton implies some sort of quantise that is coarser than Cubase's even when the quantise is set to "off" in Ableton.
You are a truly creative person, thats for sure!
All i can think is Live records my performance as i play it while Cubase shifts it akwardly to the left. Sorry Conman, you served me that one on a silver platter ;)

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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by Conman »

EdCubasero wrote:Oh..another midi early thread? It goes moving around on the forum all the time. Well, lets bring it up. Hopefully we got some news some day that somebody at Steinberg is at least listenning and maybe, like in our wetest dreams, planning to do something about it. :)
Conman wrote: All I can think is that Ableton implies some sort of quantise that is coarser than Cubase's even when the quantise is set to "off" in Ableton.
You are a truly creative person, thats for sure!
All i can think is Live records my performance as i play it while Cubase shifts it akwardly to the left. Sorry Conman, you served me that one on a silver platter ;)
Well as it's not happening for everybody I try to work out what conditions are the cause.
While you seem to think "winning" somethng is the answer I try to look objectively at the problem as I think it can be solved at the user end rather than the programming end. While it isn't fixed for you we all "lose", granted you more than me. The thing is I can only see my version of Cubase but there has to be some guessing from this end about what is happening to others.
While no-one is still bothered much about supplying system details no programmer is going to consider looking at the problem so you're stuck with the forum. Sorry but you are still serving that to yourself on a gold platter.
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Re: MIDI notes too early

Post by EdCubasero »

Its not about winning anything, what do i win? We´d all win if the guys at Steinberg took care of the problem and thats why i´ll keep posting on these threads.
We have many posts and threads about this and many people (including myself) already gave their specs and nothing has been done so far. There´s nothing more we need to work out here, its something they need to take care of. Just because you dont have it it doesnt mean that the rest of us are playing out of sync, have quantization on and we didnt realize, etc, etc.

So, for people like me having the issue the most coherent thing is to bump up this treads, point people to look on the other older threads and warn them that if they cant fix this thing after all they have read (ignore portfilter, timestamp, etc.) they will probably will never get rid of it.

I guess this is the position we all should take about it since there´s plenty of info here and people continue to have the issue. I really cant understand why you keep pointing to things like quantization etc. when you already know that none of this fixed the thing for many of us, and i´ve been following the threads and knowthat i am not the only person telling you this. But ehy this is a forum, just allow me to take it with a bit of humor. No hard feelings.

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