Has anybody tried to get their head around the maths of implementing "perfect" PDC and found an efficient way to find the latency of an individual plugin?
So there are instruments and effects with latency and all of them are synced to the main clock.
So for each device you add, sync and automation gets offset further.
The solution seems straightforward. Add compensation for that offset.
How much compensation? This is where the fun maths begin:
We can chain and layer instruments and effects. And we can route them with tracks, sends and groups.
So lets take a Rack with 3 chains, all with a combination of different instruments and effects.
Chain 1 = 3ms Delay
Chain 2 = 1ms Delay
Chain 3 = 7ms Delay
Followed by a heavy reverb and compressor = + 5ms Delay
So now the sound coming out the compressor is 8, 6 and/or 12 milliseconds late.
Any automation done now and synced effects placed after the compressor will be 8, 6 and/or 12ms early.
Automation could be corrected by offsetting the delay for each parameter based on the path of the device.
But does it take the offset of the slowest chain? Are the other chains adjusted based on the chain with the most delay?
Does compensation mean the audio starts 12ms later? When you record automation based on what you hear, is audio latency taken into consideration?
And then what about the offset of the synced effect? Is it offset by 6 or by 12 milliseconds?
These are relatively easy questions if we're just talking about 1 track. But its a whole different story is that track has a Drum Rack for example. When you start looking at an average project, the maths become madness.
Its funny to hear some people say that Ableton should have figured out PDC before they added automation recording.
Session recording is easy stuff compared to PDC. Its a way larger issue than just automation.
Recording and playing automation are on 2 different timelines when you add Plugin and Audio Interface latency.
There already is an offset in place for recorded Audio and Notes. Then PDC has to be applied to the envelopes without causing conflicts.
Sure, some companies already figured it out and by that logic, its a disgrace that Ableton didn't. Even though other companies did it in a linear environment. But instant scrubbing is like launching a scene I suppose. So boo on Ableton for not at least implementing it on the Arrangement side.
If and when Ableton comes up with a "perfect" PDC implementation that works for everybody, it'll just be a feature on a list. Met with cheers of "Finally!" and "About damn time!".
While for Ableton, it'll probably be a huge celebration after years of planning, experimenting and implementing. Who knows how far along they are... Its not done, that is all we know.
We're long past posting test results on the forum. Most of the actual info around this issue comes from Ableton's Nico Starke. It has been technically explained. Any test posted shows only 1 scenario. If we all used Live in the same way, this thread would be just 20 pages of +1's.