Can VSTi's be played in realtime?

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Can VSTi's be played in realtime?

Postby MrHope » Mon Oct 16, 2006 8:01 pm

Sorry for asking a beginner's question, but I am wondering if VSTi's can be played in realtime with a MIDI controller? I have downloaded some VSTi's that seem ok, and I've been testing out their sounds using SAVIhost.

The problem is that the latency is too large. There's a big delay between when I hit the key and when the sound comes. It's less than half of a second, but it makes playing riffs impossible.

My soundcard has ASIO, but doesn't support it fully--there is no ASIO configuration program.
Do I need a faster computer or more RAM to get rid of the latency?

Is everybody just using the VSTi's as sequencer outputs? I'd really like to be able to play them in realtime. If they can be played in realtime, what do I need to accomplish it?
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Re: Can VSTi's be played in realtime?

Postby jimi_t » Mon Oct 16, 2006 8:51 pm

MrHope wrote:Sorry for asking a beginner's question, but I am wondering if VSTi's can be played in realtime with a MIDI controller? I have downloaded some VSTi's that seem ok, and I've been testing out their sounds using SAVIhost.


More or less their intended purpose :) You've got some serious driver woes there mate, don't fret - someone more experienced than I will advise you - there is hope :D
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Re: Can VSTi's be played in realtime?

Postby kk994 » Mon Oct 16, 2006 9:15 pm

MrHope wrote:My soundcard has ASIO, but doesn't support it fully--there is no ASIO configuration program.


Not really sure what this means but yes you can play VSTs in realtime. You need a decent asio driver which usually comes with a decent soundcard. The RAM and Processor comes into play but with a simple synth for example SYNTH 1 you would get away with an old enough computer and 512Ram... no problem
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Postby HrBak » Mon Oct 16, 2006 11:12 pm

hey there..

try to visit the manufactors homepage and see if there is a driver update to your soundcard.

Also be sure that the host your are useing are set to use the asio driver.. I don't know anything about SAVIhost, but in most sequencers you have to choose the asio driver. It is not always set to use the aiso driver as default.
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Postby elmosexwhistle » Mon Oct 16, 2006 11:24 pm

asio directx full duplex, set to a buffer of 512 will get you near enough 0 latency on playing softsynths...for actually playing in audio with vst effects and monitoring in real time, im afraid ur gonna have to get a better soundcard with full asio support, i switch between full duplex (more stable) for vsti stuff and the creative audigy asio for 0 latency audio recording without too many glitches...so yeah...it can be done without having to spend a hell of a lot.x.
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Postby MissionBrown » Mon Oct 16, 2006 11:31 pm

Try this
www.asio4all.com/
It works on mst things
I used a creative extigy for years and the asio4all sorted it out with the latency.
Its free and easy to setup.
I find a latency of 92ms works fairly well on my laptop, though on somethings it can do 42ms with no problems.
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Re: Can VSTi's be played in realtime?

Postby Thefumigator » Tue Oct 17, 2006 1:29 am

MrHope wrote:Sorry for asking a beginner's question, but I am wondering if VSTi's can be played in realtime with a MIDI controller? I have downloaded some VSTi's that seem ok, and I've been testing out their sounds using SAVIhost.

The problem is that the latency is too large. There's a big delay between when I hit the key and when the sound comes. It's less than half of a second, but it makes playing riffs impossible.

My soundcard has ASIO, but doesn't support it fully--there is no ASIO configuration program.
Do I need a faster computer or more RAM to get rid of the latency?

Is everybody just using the VSTi's as sequencer outputs? I'd really like to be able to play them in realtime. If they can be played in realtime, what do I need to accomplish it?


1)Which sound card do you have?

2)Does your VSTi host supports ASIO?

3)If you wanna know if they can be played in realtime, watch my video (signature) you'll also see which vsti could fit you the most ;-)
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Postby ambientlive » Tue Oct 17, 2006 3:44 am

go ambient, then half a second delay is nothing ;)
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Postby Thefumigator » Tue Oct 17, 2006 4:27 am

ambientlive wrote:go ambient, then half a second delay is nothing ;)


:lol: you don't even need a keyboard, just mouse clicks for that ;-) hehe
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Postby MrHope » Tue Oct 17, 2006 4:52 pm

I bought a Riviera Sound Card. It's made by the same people who make SoundBlasters. There is no way to configure the ASIO on it, even though it does supply an ASIO driver. I think I need a new sound card. It's just as well because it's noisy as hell. The noise floor is like -51 dbfs when my keyboard is plugged into it. I tried ASIO4ALL, but it didn't work because my soundcard has no WDM drivers. It really ticked me off. I thought I was getting a good deal when I first bought my soundcard, but now I think it was a mistake. I have a suspicion that the MIDI on it is slightly faulty because sometimes my MIDI programs freeze when I click stop during recording, and sometimes bytes are lost during SysEx transfers. I'm so pissed off about this. I think I'll get an M-Audio soundcard. They have good latency and low noise. I'm running Windows 98 SE so I can't use some other soundcards. Computers are so frustrating.
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Postby Bitexion » Tue Oct 17, 2006 10:31 pm

There is a hardware box called The Receptor that lets you load in many VST's and play them live. Lots of big artists use them to play softsynths on stage without a laptop.
It's a pretty great box according to Jordan Rudess and other prominent keyboardists. You have several knobs on it that can be assigned to MIDI CC parameters on the softsynths.

http://www.museresearch.com/receptor.php
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Postby Thefumigator » Tue Oct 17, 2006 11:07 pm

MrHope wrote:I bought a Riviera Sound Card. It's made by the same people who make SoundBlasters. There is no way to configure the ASIO on it, even though it does supply an ASIO driver. I think I need a new sound card. It's just as well because it's noisy as hell. The noise floor is like -51 dbfs when my keyboard is plugged into it. I tried ASIO4ALL, but it didn't work because my soundcard has no WDM drivers. It really ticked me off. I thought I was getting a good deal when I first bought my soundcard, but now I think it was a mistake. I have a suspicion that the MIDI on it is slightly faulty because sometimes my MIDI programs freeze when I click stop during recording, and sometimes bytes are lost during SysEx transfers. I'm so pissed off about this. I think I'll get an M-Audio soundcard. They have good latency and low noise. I'm running Windows 98 SE so I can't use some other soundcards. Computers are so frustrating.


How wouldn't computers be so frustrating if you are using windows 98? Man, that's the base of all your problems :D

Just kidding,

I think the emus and the M-audios (in between others) got great signal to noise ratio, and also my emu got the DSP effects which are a good bonus for a 100$ sound card...
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Re: Can VSTi's be played in realtime?

Postby DGX305 » Wed Oct 18, 2006 3:02 am

Thefumigator wrote:
MrHope wrote:Sorry for asking a beginner's question, but I am wondering if VSTi's can be played in realtime with a MIDI controller? I have downloaded some VSTi's that seem ok, and I've been testing out their sounds using SAVIhost.

The problem is that the latency is too large. There's a big delay between when I hit the key and when the sound comes. It's less than half of a second, but it makes playing riffs impossible.

My soundcard has ASIO, but doesn't support it fully--there is no ASIO configuration program.
Do I need a faster computer or more RAM to get rid of the latency?

Is everybody just using the VSTi's as sequencer outputs? I'd really like to be able to play them in realtime. If they can be played in realtime, what do I need to accomplish it?


1)Which sound card do you have?

2)Does your VSTi host supports ASIO?

3)If you wanna know if they can be played in realtime, watch my video (signature) you'll also see which vsti could fit you the most ;-)


what VST are you using there? Pretty good!
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Postby DGX305 » Wed Oct 18, 2006 3:06 am

MrHope wrote:I bought a Riviera Sound Card. It's made by the same people who make SoundBlasters. There is no way to configure the ASIO on it, even though it does supply an ASIO driver. I think I need a new sound card. It's just as well because it's noisy as hell. The noise floor is like -51 dbfs when my keyboard is plugged into it. I tried ASIO4ALL, but it didn't work because my soundcard has no WDM drivers. It really ticked me off. I thought I was getting a good deal when I first bought my soundcard, but now I think it was a mistake. I have a suspicion that the MIDI on it is slightly faulty because sometimes my MIDI programs freeze when I click stop during recording, and sometimes bytes are lost during SysEx transfers. I'm so pissed off about this. I think I'll get an M-Audio soundcard. They have good latency and low noise. I'm running Windows 98 SE so I can't use some other soundcards. Computers are so frustrating.


You're living in another world! First of all, upgrade your PC to WindowXP and it may be cheaper and easier to simply buy a new PC. Any brand new PC that sells for just $500 (excluding monitor and printer) will probably do a much better job that whatever you are having now! Make sure to get a minimum of 512MB of RAM. Then load ASIO4all and run any VST. Get a decent soundcard and a good MIDI driver as well.

Man, people are running Vista Beta now, not just XP!
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Postby REwire » Wed Oct 18, 2006 5:46 am

It's possible the Riviera ASIo driver would work in XP, so you are in an impossible situation. XP and the M-audio 2496 card will be the best combo. Avoid any USB external audio interfaces unless you have UBS 2.0 and are ready to open up a new keg of possible conflicts.
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