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Effects Calculated Also If Audio Data Is Not Present.


Mau_Italy
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Hi all,

I'm a Cubase user who wants to crossgrade to Samplitude 10 Pro. I downloaded the version 10 demo and I liked very much, among the other features, Hybrid Audio Engine concept.

But I have a question:

I inserted some VST plugins in a track, with a CPU usage of about 20% during playback. The track contained just 1 object of about 5 seconds. After the end of the object, Samplitude still continued to calculate the plugins, so CPU usage still was 20%. I enabled all the options in the performance menu.

I know it's possible to use Freeze function to reduce CPU usage, but I don't like this way of managing plugins, which are always calculated also if no audio is present on the track.

Cubase gives the possibility to automate a BYPASS parameter to enable/disable a plugins as you want. So, plugins are not disabled automatically, but it's possible to automate this process.

The question is: did I forget anything? Is it possible that a program, so optimized, has a plugins management so bad? If so, I think I'll stay with Cubase.

I hope you will help me to understand this aspect of Samplitude.

Bye,

Maurizio.

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Hi Maurizio,

Samplitude in fact offers a lot of optimisations for turning off FX while there is no audio in the timeline.

In the first place this is the case while you use the classic audio engine, AFAIK for track FX.

It is always the case for Object FX, that are immediately released when the object is over.

The VST parameters of VST plugs can be automated as well, including bypass if exists. (though I never automated this parameter I must say).

There is also an automatic silence optimisation under Hybrid Engine, see performance settings. It is default-off, as some FX don't like that.

Cheers,

Sebastian

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Hi Maurizio,

Samplitude in fact offers a lot of optimisations for turning off FX while there is no audio in the timeline.

In the first place this is the case while you use the classic audio engine, AFAIK for track FX.

It is always the case for Object FX, that are immediately released when the object is over.

The VST parameters of VST plugs can be automated as well, including bypass if exists. (though I never automated this parameter I must say).

There is also an automatic silence optimisation under Hybrid Engine, see performance settings. It is default-off, as some FX don't like that.

Cheers,

Sebastian

First of all thanks for the reply...

As you say, the Automatic Silence optimization of the Hybrid Engine seems to work just with some VST plugins. For example, it does not work with Voxengo Boogex or with Studio Devil Amp Simulator, that I use and have not a Bypass button.

Moreover, the major part of VSTs have not a Bypass function, so it's almost not possible to use this option.

Another problem is during monitoring. Suppose I'm monitoring a track while I'm playing guitar with 3 effects active and suppose I need to deactivate 2 effects in a part of the song. Since Samplitude always calculates them, it's not possible to bypass the 2 effects. This feature is important during a live performance.

The real problem is that in Samplitude it's possible to automate just few parameters of the program. For example, if the "Bypass all" option (that you can find in the Effects menu of the tracks) was automatized, the problem could be solved.

Steinberg is not famous for the optimization of their products (for this reason I'd like to crossgrade), but their choice of the creation of a "per plugin" automatized Bypass button is the best actually. Moreover, it's so simple...

At the end, without this option and the effects always active, Samplitude loses lots of the power declared by Magix.

I'm a software developer and my question is always the same: why do software companies always forget these little things which are so simple and powerful? Magix created Hybrid Audio Engine and you cannot bypass a simple VST effect where you want and when you want...

Thanks a lot again,

Maurizio

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As you say, the Automatic Silence optimization of the Hybrid Engine seems to work just with some VST plugins. For example, it does not work with Voxengo Boogex or with Studio Devil Amp Simulator, that I use and have not a Bypass button. Moreover, the major part of VSTs have not a Bypass function, so it's almost not possible to use this option.

Well, that both are quirks of the PlugIns, not of the host. In Cubase, it doesn not make a fundamental diference if a VST function comes from the host or the plugin. As Samplitude is not a pure VST host, it makes a difference.

Another problem is during monitoring. Suppose I'm monitoring a track while I'm playing guitar with 3 effects active and suppose I need to deactivate 2 effects in a part of the song. Since Samplitude always calculates them, it's not possible to bypass the 2 effects. This feature is important during a live performance.

If you mean that you can't deactivate on the fly, that is a correct observation. That's a characteristic of Sequoiatude that a change in the FX chain, especially when a change in latency is triggered by this, only happens in Stop mode.

The real problem is that in Samplitude it's possible to automate just few parameters of the program. For example, if the "Bypass all" option (that you can find in the Effects menu of the tracks) was automatized, the problem could be solved.

You are not right assuming that this would address the above problem. The idea is however very good.

Steinberg is not famous for the optimization of their products (for this reason I'd like to crossgrade), but their choice of the creation of a "per plugin" automatized Bypass button is the best actually. Moreover, it's so simple...

At the end, without this option and the effects always active, Samplitude loses lots of the power declared by Magix.

I'm a software developer and my question is always the same: why do software companies always forget these little things which are so simple and powerful? Magix created Hybrid Audio Engine and you cannot bypass a simple VST effect where you want and when you want...

I am afraid that besides that very good idea of automating an (internal!) bypass parameter, you are jumping to conclusions that are not entirely correct. Still, an instantaneous re-ordering of the FX chain would be required to acheive what you desire. That is a completely different issue. In spite of your acclaimed knowledge. Apart from that, it seems so that Samplitude is different in an aspect from Cubase that is important for your personal use. That's very relevant for you, but has nothing to do with objective quality parameters, as you might want to allude to.

Communque, un buon 2008!

Saluti,

Sebastian

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Hi Sebastian,

When I say “as developer” I don’t want to say “I know all” or “I’m a super expert”, but I just say that, when I use a program, I try to study all its different aspects, since I work in the software market. For me, performance optimization is an important aspect of a program, particularly for a DAW, which needs great processing power.

That said, every time I open a thread in a forum (I use DAWs since 1997) about performances, the result is always the same: users don’t care about this aspect. They prefer to buy a super-powerful computer instead of ask developers to disable an effect when it’s not needed. Also in this case, you are the only one who answered me, no other seems interested on this.

Actually, DAWs engines don’t require so much CPU power, the real problem are effects. So, a good optimization work should be focused on how use them correctly.

To close this discussion, I discovered a new bad aspect of Samp: when you create an Automation Track for a plugin parameter, the Automation is read only if an audio object is present! So if I play guitar and automate the Gain parameter of a Amp Simulator, the Automation is not read… To enable reading of Automation track without the presence of an Audio Object you need to disable “Deactivate FX on empty or silent tracks for ASIO”, and the circle closed…

Happy 2008 also to you.

Bye,

Maurizio.

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