Studio One playback of B-Step has some problems

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Monoman
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Studio One playback of B-Step has some problems

Post by Monoman » 08 Dec 2014, 02:54

1.
Midi channel one 'pulsing' with input data even when sequencer stopped.

In the template that I have included, you can see that when B-Step has all its channels muted on the B-Step interface itself, and there is no midi theoretically being sent to S1, if you look at the track there is a steady 1/8th note sort of pulse that is somehow still being sent. In fact, this pulse becomes audible and triggers an 1/8th note sequence sound out of the synth. Even when it is stopped and play is not engaged. Even with all tracks muted on B-Step. If you press play, and unmute the relevant track, it kind of reverts to normal. For a while, then it plays up again. It is pretty random. I have even tried changing some of the midi channels, but no luck, for B-Step to work, this problem seems unavoidable. This only happens on the first synth channel set to receive on midi '1'.

2.
B-Step is resetting some of the parameters on its configuration page.

For some reason, some of the options on the config page are being reset. I.E. 'No Device' becomes 'In Host'. None of this seems to make any difference to how B-Step behaves. It doesn't change the main parameters. But I did notice this and don't know why it is happening.

3.
Playback is speeding up and slowing down.

The playback of B-Step is atrocious. Totally out of time. Unusable in fact. It misses notes. Adds notes. It slows down. It speeds up. I am using a very simple template with just B-Step controlling one synth in a bare bones song that has nothing else in it. This should not be happening. Again, it is very random. There doesn't seem to be a problem playing the notes in when record is set on the tracks. And B-Step is not visually slowing down/speeding up - the lights flash in a steady time, but playback of the sounds is totally off and unusable. Problem no.1 only seems to compound how badly it plays back.

I have included the song templates for you to have a look at. It happens in both. I have tried different synths and restarted etc. but to no avail. B-Step is all over the place.
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STUDIO ONE TEMPLATES.rar
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Monoman
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Re: Studio One playback of B-Step has some problems

Post by Monoman » 09 Dec 2014, 03:10

As for problem no.1, it seems the issue is B-Step sending its sync signal via channel 1 (some kind of midi clock thing). If I change the input from B-Step the 'pulsing' stops. You can see it flashing on via the midi on/off indicator. Some times it flashes when B-Step is stopped and there is no sound. Then sometimes the sounds are triggered again. Even changing another channel other midi 1 does not stop this clock being sent. I am assuming that is what it is.

I understand why B-Step would need to keep sync, but it shouldn't interfere and play any notes.

I may be wrong about this, but I think this is what's happening.

Also, the playback seems much more solid now. I really do not know why that should be. I've restarted my computer since yesterday and the problem seems to have almost gone away. This midi clock thing is confusing the issue. It still goes a bit funny now and again, but it's certainly usable.

This is odd becaue every other plugin was working fine including Kirnu Cream which I am using to test alongside B-Step when I'm setting stuff up.

Ah well, it's an improvement at least and getting a little deeper into things now...

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Monoman
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Re: Studio One playback of B-Step has some problems

Post by Monoman » 09 Dec 2014, 03:30

Problem 1 (the errant midi clock thing) is manageable. If it start playing the notes, then you just have to press play and stop and this usually stops it from sounding. Obviously it shouldn't be leaking through. I've tried to find some settings I can change in S1 coz you can actually turn midi clock on/off for some external instruments, but there seems to be no way to do this for internal ones. Then again, turning it off might not be such a good idea! It seems that this is more of a problem on S1's end than B-Step though.


Also, S1 has a lot of latency when rendering out the waves from B-Step. To see what I mean I have included a couple of wave files rendered from S1. The first one is just B-Step with the missing first beat, and the second is with it rendered again with a 4/4 kick underneath.

B-Step is playing continuously and there are no gaps in the sound, so I am assuming the silence at the start is some kind of latency.
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S1-WAVS.rar
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Monoman
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Re: Studio One playback of B-Step has some problems

Post by Monoman » 09 Dec 2014, 04:07

As for the gaps when rendering out files, according to Reaper, B-Step has 0 latency so it can't be that. Dune has 0 latency as well, so that isn't it either. I imagine it is some kind of buffering for the sync to start. No idea.

However. There is a very easy way around this problem. Record the midi into S1. It takes only as long as the bars you want to record in in real time. It works absolutely perfectly and couldn't be easier.

But, as with rendering out to file, there is a beat long gap waiting for it to 'catch'.

Solution: Give it a blank 1 bar count in when you record, then (if your sequences always starts on the first beat of the bar), just move ALL the midi notes to the left, so the first note is on the first beat of the bar. And there you have it - perfectly recorded midi. No need for 3rd party solutions. And only takes about 5 seconds.

I probably should write a little tutorial at some point, but you get the picture.

I'm seriously impressed with how quick and easy the midi recording is in S1. This is an excellent way to work and it's a seriously fast workflow coupled with B-Step. You can just play B-Step live like a real life mixing desk and record all the midi notes into S1, then edit it later to what you want. This is my preferred method of working, anyway.

I'm coming up with some amazing ideas using this method. I'm getting to really like this plugin a lot.

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Monoman
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Re: Studio One playback of B-Step has some problems

Post by Monoman » 09 Dec 2014, 04:36

Ok, sorry for the ramble. Lot to take in, I know.

Just take all the above stuff as a bit of feedback.

For some reason, B-Step is playing really solidly now. All the timing issues I had have gone for the moment. I can't think of what I have changed, apart from just installing a new multi-client ASIO driver http://vidance.com/asiomulti/asiomulti.html

Not sure if that has anything to do with it.

For now, I would say, the only problem seems to be that 'Midi clock' sync thing.

But even that isn't a problem to me, so I'm not too woried about it.

Just consider this as me sharing my 'notes'.

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monotomy
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Re: Studio One playback of B-Step has some problems

Post by monotomy » 09 Dec 2014, 20:24

Hi Monoman,

the MIDI clock thing is a active sensing message. E.g Ableton Live stopped B-Step after a short time and we use the old MIDI sensing standard to avoid this.
But it's not a big deal to disable it for Studio One. (will be added in the next update).

3. is solved?

2.?
Monoplugs - Unique Music Software

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Monoman
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Re: Studio One playback of B-Step has some problems

Post by Monoman » 10 Dec 2014, 02:21

monotomy wrote:Hi Monoman,

the MIDI clock thing is a active sensing message. E.g Ableton Live stopped B-Step after a short time and we use the old MIDI sensing standard to avoid this.
But it's not a big deal to disable it for Studio One. (will be added in the next update).

3. is solved?

2.?
Hi.

1. Ok that makes sense. Good to know.

2. I'm not sure what is going on but it doesn't seem to be affecting anything. I just know that when I save the song in S1 with the devices disabled, when I load that same track back in, the devices are enabled. Just something to keep in mind. It may affect some other setup, but for now I wouldn't worry.

3. Yes, the playback seems fine again today after another restart. I can't think what it was. It might possibly have been Dune coz when I replaced it with synth1 things seemed a bit better. But I might have got that wrong and it is probably a coincidence. It DID definitely seem quite bad for some reason, and it wasn't only the midi clocky thingy confusing me. I can't replicate it so I'm not going to worry about it. If it rears its head again, I'll try to get a reproducable track to send you.

4. Just while we're about things, I suppose there was a no.4 as well. The fact that the renders of B-Step are fine, but a bit delayed, by a beat or something, and also the recording in of the midi. Like I said, you just give it a 1 bar count in and the problem goes away, so again it is something to keep in mind but nothing to really worry about. I guess this is a problem more to do with S1 than it is with B-Step, because I have duplicated the templates (roughly) for Reaper and EnergyXT2 and I have rendered the same files out and no delay. So, I guess that says something. You can have a look at those files (renders) in the rar files I'm about to put up in the 'Using B-Step' section to see what I mean.


I'm telling you: Studio One with B-Step is a KILLER combination though. The speed you can record in with and the stability of the midi being read is just spot on. This is a new musical dimension for me and all done with such ease and elegance. Not sure if you have S1 - they do a pretty good free version of it that might allow you to load B-Step, or maybe it's the really cheap one - anyway, try to get a hold of it some time and have a look. I've tried these things before and they are either a chore to do, or don't quite work properly. This integration and synergy you have is probably a coincidence, but it is somethig to be noted about an ideal way of working. It is even easier than using the integrated Melodyne plugin, which was the main game changer for this version (and the reason I upgraded). I know it is a different kind of thing, but it encourages me to use both B-Step and Studio One a lot more.

I bet there's a lot of people that use S1 for 'that' type of music, would really love this plugin. For a couple of dollars it would give them a whole new dimension of work flow that they don't have at the moment. I'll have to put something up properly on the other bit of the forum about this subject.

I've also checked the resource usage and B-Step has 0 latency (I'm sure you know this) and is only 1 percent of CPU going full tilt. So all that 'utilitarianism', with practically no performance hit whatsoever. It took me a while to figure how to hook it all up, but when you know how, it's very easy and quick.


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