Questions & Answers

closed [Completed 3.5] Hybrid Audio Engine - An alternative to transform for low latency software monitoring

+79 votes
asked Jun 19, 2016 in Completed Feature Requests by danam2 (4,030 points)
closed May 23, 2017 by LMike
Lately there have been a couple of forum discussions and feature requests about how to improve software monitoring where it is needed. Recording "real" instruments is best done with ZLM, but for recording VSTis or recording with a guitar amp simulation software monitoring is mandantory. There is no way around it, period.

To improve latency for software monitoring there are two major solutions that people talk about:
a) Render/freeze/transform-to-audio (call it whatever you want) tracks before recording with software monitoring
b) deactivate plugins with high latency and/or high CPU demand. Some DAWs have features that deactivate plugins with high latencies automatically by clicking a button.

But I found another solution that I would prefer: Samplitude/Sequioa (Windows only) have a feature called Hybrid Audio Engine.  A low-latency-engine (its buffersize is set by the ASIO driver) and a high-latency-engine with a buffersize that you can configure in the DAW. Now there are a couple of possible combinations of those two engines. Example: For recording a guitar through an amp simulation you can choose a combination that uses the low-latency-engine only for your software-monitored guitar track. All other tracks would use the high latency engine. Because of that your guitar track is completely unaffected by latencies introduced by plugins on other tracks. There is also less CPU demand so you can set the ASIO buffer lower, too. I did a test drive and it worked for me pretty well. I set the high latency buffer very high and so fader moves of those high latency tracks took a while to be heard, while changes at low latency tracks could be heard immediately, no matter how many plugins with high latency where inserted into those other tracks. That's fantastic. Of course you can also set all tracks to use the low latency engine. But then you have the usual problems again.  The best solution to this problem I've seen so far. You don't have to wait for freezing to be finished or record with a changed sound because some plugins have been deactivated. I wish Studio One could introduce such a feature.
closed with the note: Dual / low latency monitoring

1 Answer

+14 votes
answered Jul 10, 2016 by Skip Jones (165,770 points)

Thank you for the feature request. 

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