digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers?

Posted by: toddy

digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/11/12 05:52 AM

This is one more horrible problem I've run into with D/A recording on PC. I'm using Yamaha's midi-USB UX16 (to record my piano - Roland HP302)to my computer (Acer W/7 64bit) running MSI recording software.

The above set up works quite well, but when I but in my mike - C-1U, a Behringer direct to USB condenser mike - I can work for a while but I get frequent crashes.

But the real problem starts when I put the Audio-USB mini mixer - Behringer (XENYX 302USB). Either the USB fails to load at all, or there is a brief entente cordial followed by another blue-screen explosion.

I'll need the audio-USB device to actually record the HP302 parts into the computer (and it's a lot of multi tracks).

So: 1) What do you do when you get blue screens?
2) Does anyone else deal with this kind of Behringer stuff - if so, have you solved any driver problems?
3) In the longer term, what would be a realistic solution for reliable digital audio recording/multitracking (always including midi).

To be honest, I've been trying to sort this problem out since 1998 (from time to time) and ALWAYS run up against silly (mostly synchronisation) problems with PCs (I used to work fine with Atari ST back in the 80's, but that was mostly midi only).
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/11/12 07:45 AM

News Flash: I've just changed USB hub and ALL THREE devices are now working (midi to usb/ audio to USB to audio/ mike to USB).......FOR THE MOMENT....

The hub I was using was a brand new USB 2.0 device bought 2 weeks ago from a high tech chain. It did not work.

The one I'm now using is ancient, version 1.0 and was bought from LIDL (the down-market grocery chain).

There is a moral in there somewhere.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/11/12 07:55 AM

mmmm - It's much better now but I'm still getting occasional blue screen crashes. Pain in the ass. Any suggestions?
Posted by: RafaPolit

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/11/12 07:31 PM

The problems with USB hubs it that you are actually using a single USB port split into several ports. But they share Interrupt Requests and several other issues like bandwidth etc. So they work great for things that are not continuously requiring info, like a keyboard, a mouse, etc.

My suggestion would be to try to hook the Behringer mixer into a dedicated USB port on the computer (you may need to put the keyboard on the hub, for example), and do this with any key components if you are able to free actual ports on the computer.

Hope this helps,
Rafa.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 03:30 AM

Yes, thqt mqkes sense. My problem is thqt this computer only hqs one USB port. It used to hqve two but one of them is broken - qnd I qctuqly tested the terminql inside the computer qnd it is not working either. So thqt meqns qll signqls hqve to pqss through the sqme USB.

Yesterdqy I wqs looking qt Mqc Book Pro - they only hqve one USB qpprently. Does thqt meqn it would be unsuitble for multi-trqck Digitql Qudio recording?

Or qre they so well designed thqt they only need one?
Posted by: Macy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 03:49 AM

Originally Posted By: toddy

Yesterdqy I wqs looking qt Mqc Book Pro - they only hqve one USB qpprently.


I don't think any Macbook Pro has ever had less than 2 USB ports. Some had 3 USB ports. What Macbook Pro did you see?
Posted by: Gigantoad

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 03:50 AM

Have had some trouble with USB hubs as well, mostly power-related. Could try use an active one that comes with its own PSU if that's the issue.

Though I don't think I've ever had blue screens because of a hub. Blue screens are usually the result of messy drivers. Your mileage may vary.
Posted by: RafaPolit

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 04:14 AM

I am completely confused here... you are having Blue Screens on a Mac Book Pro? You listed your hardware as an Acer with Windows 7. I really don't understand, is this a new computer you are looking into? I agree with Macy that any Macbook Pro, as old as I can remember, has had at least 2 USB ports. Also, Macs are heavy on Firewire support, so you could have a Firewire audio interface or firewire midi device and save one USB port?

Also, there appears to have been a hardware swap of your Q and A letters in your keyboard, you may wanna check into that wink

Rafa.
edit: Yes, all Macbook Pro has 2 or 3 USBs: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MacBook_Pro#Technical_specifications_2
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 08:49 AM

Yes, I wqs looking qt q Mqc Book Pro in q shop - I didn't sqy I hqd one. I once experimented with q Mqc Book Qir qnd there did not qpper to be qny speed problems qt qll. If it would be q solution, I might consider buying one.

I think the drivers cquse the blue screen - not the hub. The hub wqs simply not functioning properly with the mike/mixer inputs for some odd reqson.

I do not know the model, but it wqs new qnd only qppered to hve one USB socket qs well qs one firewire.

Thqnks for your suggestions.
Posted by: Gigantoad

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 09:25 AM

toddy, is your "a" key broken? smile
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 09:42 AM

Yes. I thought 'q' would do for second best.
Posted by: MacMacMac

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 09:50 AM

Your keyboqrd is hqving q bqd dqy? Thqt's q shqme! smile
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 10:17 AM

Thqnk you qll for your concern. I'll convey your condolences to my keyboqrd immediqtely.
Posted by: Gigantoad

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 10:29 AM

Well, Behringer usually produce crap so a driver issue with these devices wouldn't surprise me all that much.

Does the bluescreen have any message? If you see mention of a .sys file then it's most certainly a driver issue.
Posted by: RafaPolit

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 10:36 AM

Toddy, most of the Macbook Pros have one USB on one side and one on the other, so if you saw one USB and one Firewire, then the other USB is on the other side.

I'm sorry to hear that about the Behringer, as they seemed like a budget alternative to more expensive products.

Rafa.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 11:03 AM

Yes, I must sqy the Behringer does q very poor job re Qudio to Digitql (to USB). There is q distinct drop in quqlity qnd the bqnd between (white) noise qnd clipping due to overloqd is very nqrrow indeed. I wouldn't recommend this converter/mixer, unfortunqtely.
Posted by: emenelton

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 02:41 PM

Perhaps a good place to start would be Komplete Audio 6. It's an audio and midi I/O for about $229. I would get a mic to use with it as well and not recommend using your podcaster. One usb device only. I would also recommend a good daw program. You mentioned MSI. What is that?
Reaper is free and considered good.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 03:35 PM

MSI is q Jqpqnese progrqm which leqves q lot to be desired. However, it wqs the only one I could find for q resonqble price which combined midi qnd qudio, for q rqsonqble price, q couple of yeqrs qgo.

It's bqsed on the originql Cubqse design which I quite like.

http://www.frieve.com/english/musicstd/download.html

Unfortunqtely it is not thqt intuitive in some of its fqcilities qnd there does not seem to be much support for it. I shqll certqinly try Reqper.
Posted by: emenelton

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 03:56 PM

Your multiple usb devices are just as suspect.

Your program is probably incompatible with your computer.
Early version of Cubase as well as Cubase LE are known not to work good. On top of that, you are running a 64 bit OS with this same old software.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 05:06 PM

Yes, indeed. I'm considering a clean sweep with new gear - too many mishaps and crashes with this equipment. and at the moment, I'm only using one midi source - my Roland piano - and one michrophone. It should not be so incredibly complicated surely.

I've downloaded Reaper and the manual. It seems exactly what I could use. Thanks for the advice.
Posted by: emenelton

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 05:15 PM

I would be concerned about your usb hub as well. It's possible that you get less crashes with the 1.0 hub because it is slower and your computer can keep up with it(just an idea). I would not continue to use a 1.0 hub. Both midi and audio need constant streaming. Having both on a single usb controller is probably not a good idea.

How-ever, I would try to get reaper going with your USB 2.0 hub or no hub, just direct. Put together some tracks with your keyboard only plugged in. Close Reaper, unplug your keyboard, plug in your mic, restart Reaper and see how that records. It should work.

What do you use to listen to your computer audio? What AUDIO DEVICE?
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/12/12 06:17 PM

at the moment, I listen back to audio on the Behringer mixer - it works both ways simultaneously. Infact that works ok. What does not work well is the analogue to USB which is its most important function as far a I'm concerned.

but I'm just feeling my way here. In fact, self-synch monitoring while recording is completely impossible with this set up because, even if the system didn't crash with the duplex running, there is such big time lag that you'd be completely thrown.

...blue screen said: driver 64 ST (something like that)
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/13/12 10:16 AM

Reaper is very nice, but it has a midi sync problem - when monitoring the keyboard directly through Reaper, there is between 0.5 and 1.0 second delay. I've looked in the manual and cannot find a reason for this. All buffering settings concern audio, not midi, of course.

I cannot understand why there should be such a time lag with midi - maybe I'm doing something stupid, but I don't know what. Help** (This problem does not occur at all with MSI).

....this is turning out to be a saga, which I fear is only just beginning......here we go again.
Posted by: emenelton

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/13/12 10:20 AM

Originally Posted By: toddy
it works both ways simultaneously. Infact that works ok. What does not work well is the analogue to USB



Toddy,

The above statement contradicts itself.

Please confirm in your audio device properties in Reaper(you are using Reaper I assume), that you've chosen the Behringer ASIO driver.
For now , also, please make sure that you have your behringer mixer only plugged directly into the USB port on your computer.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/13/12 10:45 AM

Originally Posted By: emenelton
Originally Posted By: toddy
it works both ways simultaneously. Infact that works ok. What does not work well is the analogue to USB



Toddy,

The above statement contradicts itself.


Yes, it does. What I meant was digital to analogue from the computer works well - and the various analogue inputs also work well - to the analogue output monitor. But analogue to USB does not function well because of the poor signal to noise ratio.

Please confirm in your audio device properties in Reaper(you are using Reaper I assume), that you've chosen the Behringer ASIO driver.
For now , also, please make sure that you have your behringer mixer only plugged directly into the USB port on your computer.

Yes. But if I do that, I will have no midi to/from the computer.
Posted by: emenelton

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/13/12 11:11 AM

Toddy,

I understand about your midi needs, how-ever I thought that if you got to a point that your system recorded and played back without crashing, that that would be a starting point.
Your mixer is considered to be good. It should also record well.

For now plug the analogues from your keyboard into your mixer and record analogue. You might not want to do that as a goal, but if you can accomplish that, it will be a significant first step. Also, the latency you mentioned while using your midi is a 'normal' characteristic, I am not saying that when your system is finally up and running that you will still have that, but that is a different 'catagory' of a problem to address. I would recommend focusing on your usb mixer only and accomplishing one step at a time.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/13/12 11:47 AM

Right. I will try what you're suggesting. I'll tell you what happened later.
Posted by: emenelton

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 11/13/12 12:36 PM

toddy

http://www.kvraudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=4959574

This is an interesting thread where you can read about users opinions on the midi implementation of various 'daws'.

Reaper gets good grades. It seems FL Studio is a favorite with Logic being perhaps the best.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 03/30/13 04:30 PM

The upshot of the above (system crashes, Reaper timing errors with midi/audio, poor sound quality with Berhinger analogue audio to usb mixer) is that, after a complete Windows 7 re-installation, EVERYTHING works fine now.

But to get good quality (and indeed stereo) using the Berhinger audio to USB device, you need to specify in Windows audio device management that you are using a 2 channel input device at 44kHz or higher. The problem is, windows assumes that the USB audio input is a (mono) microphone, unless you specify otherwise.

Now that the latency problems with Reaper are sorted (using ASIO4ALL) the program is fine for midi recording - although it's not always intuitive, by any means. But support and forum activity is healthy.
Posted by: emenelton

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 03/30/13 05:46 PM

Wow, congrats for keeping at it!
Good news.
Posted by: toddy

Re: digital audio and midi recording - bad drivers? - 03/30/13 06:08 PM

Emenelton, your advice helped a lot, so thank you! smile