getting dropouts during recording - buffering?

how much to use?

I successfully recorded a piano track the other night, but noticed that during recording I kept hearing faint “pops” that sounded like dropouts.
The pops occurred in the same places during playback.

I chalked it up to overworking my internal hard drive and switched to my USB external HD as the output device for temp and WAV files.

I experienced the same thing.

I realized that perhaps my Buffer Settings needed to be adjusted.

When I went into the buffer settings, the Record settings were at "Custom, 512 samples - 0.006 response time. Going off the manual, I switched to the preset “Normal (Default)” buffering.

Now when I record, I DO seem to be getting fewer dropouts, BUT I’m also hearing my input sent back to my headphones with a 1-2 second delay.
I tried turning off Monitoring on the Playback VU meter but that had no effect.

I did set my Audio Devices to WDM FastTrack Pro 1/2 IN and WDM FastTrack Pro 1/2 OUT for my Recording and Playback devices, respectively, based on Phoo’s advice in a previous post.

How do I either mute the monitoring I’m hearing, or adjust the settings so the monitor send isn’t delayed by 1-2 seconds?

Or is this even possible?
I’m smart enough to see that there are 3 or 4 different factors that could be at play here, but not smart enough to figure out which one it is :)

Ahhhhh, yes, the magic word is tradeoff.

As you’ve noticed, if you increase the size of your buffers, the latency (the delay you hear) goes up, and vice versa.

My suggestion is, unless you absolutely must (because you want to use Vst or Vsti when recording), then try to monitor your recording source directly rather than via the software.

I suspect that you have the “LIVE” button pressed in n-track at the moment. Turn it off and try to figure out the best way to monitor directly. That way you can set your buffers to whatever setting that they need to be for reliable recording and playback without having to battle with latency.

You can do this either via a mixer or by settings in your soundcard.

Come back and ask if you need more info.

Mark, thanks for the quick reply.

I understand what you’re saying, but…here comes the dumb question…what if I then need to record a second track with a vocal on top of the piano?
If I’m monitoring from the source, I can’t monitor the track I just recorded + the live signal I’m laying on top of it.

Or did I miss that chapter in Multitrack Recording 101?


Life was easier when I was using my Zoom PS-04 and dumping WAV files to nTrack, but dangit I can’t find a 128mb SM card these days :)

It’s all about getting your monitoring setup correctly. Not much time at the moment. Will try a longer reply later…

If the Fastrack pro uses the same control applet as the Delta cards then the answer is in there. I’m not an expert but I think you need to setup the monitor mix.

I used to have a Delta in my old DAW, but I used it with a nice mixer so I could do my monitoring via that, and I cant’t really remember much about the Delta configuration as I never had a need to play with it.