Problem : Live 6 Sync Hardware

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Chouch21
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Post by Chouch21 » Mon Jan 22, 2007 12:23 pm

For instance, are you using the same computer for sequencing as you are to visit these forums and write these messages? If so, are you running antivirus? Anything else?
No, my computer is running with the minimal services on. No internet, no anti virus etc...
Well, I finally got everything up and running. I am very pleased to report Live is giving me no sync trouble whatsoever
EddieJ > did you tried the microkorg with the arpeggio ON by sending notes from Live to it ?[/quote]

EddieJ
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Post by EddieJ » Mon Jan 22, 2007 9:06 pm

Chouch21 wrote: EddieJ > did you tried the microkorg with the arpeggio ON by sending notes from Live to it ?
[/quote]

I ran the mod sequencer of the MS2000R while triggering notes via MIDI. The mod sequencer kept up just fine.
I just tested it again to be sure. So far, my MS2000R, EMX and ESX all keep up with Abelton clock. I just wish there were a way to transmit a restart signal to the Electribes, they just kinda pause and move on if I use Ableton's restart key.

EDIT: I played a pattern that used heavy sync delay on the EMX while getting clock from Ableton.
~groan~~

I heard it. The delay..
The delay was gltching as though I were adjusting the time.
Ableton seems like such great software, why must this happen???
My CPU stays down at a cool 3% since all I send is MIDI. How is this too hard for the clock?

I'm putting in a trouble ticket. Maybe there are so few of us using hardware the MIDI sync issue is still in the back of their minds???

I'm a believer now... a believer who believes "there be some 'splainin to do." I just paid for a new computer and this software. The really odd part is when Ableton is set to get the clock from one MIDI source and send it on out to another, I can see the two clock indicators (send/ receive) losing track of each other.
This sucks.
I'd love to know if there is really someone who doesn't have a problem with sync.
Just to be sure, I'll be upgrading to Live 6.3 before I put in my ticket (I got 6.0 when I ordered it).

machinedelmorte
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Post by machinedelmorte » Tue Jan 23, 2007 6:25 am

Try messing with the midi in/out/through of the Electribes.

justin
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Post by justin » Tue Jan 23, 2007 11:15 am

EddieJ wrote:I ran the mod sequencer of the MS2000R while triggering notes via MIDI. The mod sequencer kept up just fine.
I just tested it again to be sure. So far, my MS2000R, EMX and ESX all keep up with Abelton clock. I just wish there were a way to transmit a restart signal to the Electribes, they just kinda pause and move on if I use Ableton's restart key.

EDIT: I played a pattern that used heavy sync delay on the EMX while getting clock from Ableton.
~groan~~

I heard it. The delay..
The delay was gltching as though I were adjusting the time.
Ableton seems like such great software, why must this happen???
My CPU stays down at a cool 3% since all I send is MIDI. How is this too hard for the clock?

I'm putting in a trouble ticket. Maybe there are so few of us using hardware the MIDI sync issue is still in the back of their minds???

I'm a believer now... a believer who believes "there be some 'splainin to do." I just paid for a new computer and this software. The really odd part is when Ableton is set to get the clock from one MIDI source and send it on out to another, I can see the two clock indicators (send/ receive) losing track of each other.
This sucks.
I'd love to know if there is really someone who doesn't have a problem with sync.
Just to be sure, I'll be upgrading to Live 6.3 before I put in my ticket (I got 6.0 when I ordered it).
i have a similar (ish) setup to u, and last time i did some midi sync tests with my korg er 1 drum machine i got the same problem that you had. it seems the sync delay changes at random times. i noticed it more when start / stopping the ableton timeline. initially, u start out at a low sync delay value, then as it randomly f*cks up it gets larger and larger and...

it doest seem to be particularly steady either, in terms of both sync and midi notes... i thought i wasnt that good a drummer! 8O i still dont understand why modern equipment is so poor at handling midi clock??? i think i'm going to raid a 2nd hand shop, get me an atari ST just for the f**ing midi clock!

In terms of ableton live, i am not convinced the problem lies exclusively within the software. My current hunch is that the remote SL which i am using in automap mode, could also be part of the problem. perhaps it cant handle being in automap mode and sending / receiving MIDI clock msg? altho' i have done no tests yet to back this up, but i have a 2x2 midi box - with which i have previously and successfully used MIDI clock.

Last time i ran into these problems, i emailed ableton support who got back to me stating they were aware of potential problems with midi timing and were looking into it, but that was quite a while ago... also i recently noticed mr.henke said that one of the things which will be addressed in future updates is midi timing... fingers crossed and they might do something soon, or at least confirm in this post that they are aware of the issues... (?)

in the meanwhile, eddiej can u tell us what midi device u are using, and on what platform?

i will do some more tests with live 6.03 to see if the problem is still there.

EddieJ
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Post by EddieJ » Tue Jan 23, 2007 4:25 pm

I never had issues with MIDI clock when using a hardware sequencer. My current set up, top to bottom:
Gateway M275 tablet/ laptop hybrid, 1.7GHz1 512MB RAM (processor usually stays down at 1-2% when running since I run no audio tracks or VSTis through Live- the M275 isn't hooked up to any audio device).

Korg microKontrol mapped in for note entry and track mutes.

M Audio MIDISport 4x4 for MIDI I/O (I tried clock through the microKontrol once, and it was exactly the same, I've ruled out MIDI interface as a cause).

Right now, the best way for me to run is to use the ESX for clock run out to the EMX's in, then from the EMX's thru to Ableton. I then send clock and notes to the MS2000R, microKorg, Roland SH32 and Roland JV1010.
It seems as though the MS2000R and microKorg aren't as jittery when they get sluggish clock.

Even though the clock is coming from the ESX, Ableton doesn't just pass the clock signal. It appears to calculate and retransmit its own, which is seen when watching the indicators for clock in/ out at the top left of the page. I watch in horror as the two fail to blink together.

zobomix
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Post by zobomix » Thu Jan 25, 2007 12:06 am

I know this post may be useless but I currently use Live 5.0.3 and the MIDI clock drifts, of course. I see the problem is stil going on in version 6 so I won't upgrade until Ableton has addressed this properly.
MIDI drifts occur even when just using softsynths and simpler. The way it works for me is to pipe Live through rewire in PT as other people have suggested.
Since MIDI drifts, I wonder if MTC also goes out of sync in Live 6.
To me, Live is good for DJing but the worst tool to produce dance music. In fact, PT is more solid MIDI-wise than Live! I used to complain about PT MIDI drifts until I experienced the random unwanted MIDI swing in Live. 8O
Seems to me that if you want to have rock solid MIDI clock you either get yourself an Atari with Creator or you shell out the money for an Akai MPC. I am going for the latter soon.

Dr. Zoiberg
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Post by Dr. Zoiberg » Thu Jan 25, 2007 8:16 pm

It seems to me that it's not the midi clock that drifts, but the audio.
That would explain why people using only hardware synths don't have any problem.

To those experiencing midi drifting when synced to live: try the "driver error compensation" lesson and check that the offset always stays the same, even after 10-15 minutes.
On my system I get variable recording latency and it just gets bigger after some time (with a Xone3D).
Obviously Live can't accurately compensate for this variable latency and you get that offset in your recordings, even if midi clock is fine.

krikor
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Post by krikor » Thu Jan 25, 2007 8:53 pm

Dr. Zoiberg wrote:It seems to me that it's not the midi clock that drifts, but the audio.
That would explain why people using only hardware synths don't have any problem.

To those experiencing midi drifting when synced to live: try the "driver error compensation" lesson and check that the offset always stays the same, even after 10-15 minutes.
On my system I get variable recording latency and it just gets bigger after some time (with a Xone3D).
Obviously Live can't accurately compensate for this variable latency and you get that offset in your recordings, even if midi clock is fine.
my machines sometimes stop and this does not have anything to do with the audio, but with the midi sync signal

Dr. Zoiberg
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Post by Dr. Zoiberg » Thu Jan 25, 2007 9:01 pm

krikor wrote:my machines sometimes stop and this does not have anything to do with the audio, but with the midi sync signal
True, but I'm only referring to supposed midi clock drifting.
You clearly have some other problem, probably related to start / stop messages.

zobomix
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Post by zobomix » Fri Jan 26, 2007 7:59 am

Sorry but midi drifts in Live, I have no doubt. Not only did I notice this problem on my system but also on a friend's one. So now I use Live in rewire mode and it has become a glorified drum machine becuse I can't use hardware synths in Live when using rewire unless that is possible. It's really too bad because Live is so inspiring--no need to use the stop button anymore--so using PT is my temporary fix but will look into an MPC soon. That's where it all started :D

dbone
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STILL problems...

Post by dbone » Tue Feb 06, 2007 7:11 pm

OK... So I've made a few upgrades in the studio. I switched from the Steinberg Midex8 to the MOTU MIDI Express 128. My Midex was an early rev of hardware and I was kind of hoping that the MOTU drivers might be a bit more solid. We will see. Haven't had much time to test, but previous issue with the MiniMoog persists:

SYMPTOMS:

1. Repeated 16th note-on messages sent to the MiniMoog will randomly "drop" a note - roughly 1 dropped note in every 10 notes played.
2. Note-on messages (say a string of successive 16th notes, drawn with pencil tool) seem to overlap and "crap out" . If I shorten the note by 1 32nd note "tic" they will play properly. Basic sysnthesis things like Envelopes, KeyTrigger Modes, etc. all set correctly

MAN am I getting pissed!! :evil:

Sent it thru Ableton Support - I can't wait to see the next canned reply.

Architect
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Post by Architect » Wed Feb 07, 2007 2:25 am

I have been able to use Live 6.03 midi synced with my MPC 2000 with no problems as mentioned previously. No slow sync, timing seems to be fine. I'm using an RME Multiface as my audio/midi interface. I haven't given it rigorous testing but so far so good...
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dbone
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so what's your point?

Post by dbone » Wed Feb 07, 2007 3:05 am

Jeez, that's GREAT! Hey everyone! Forget all about it! It's working fine for Architect on his MPC!! Nothing more to see here - move along!

EddieJ
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Post by EddieJ » Wed Feb 07, 2007 2:53 pm

Dr. Zoiberg wrote:It seems to me that it's not the midi clock that drifts, but the audio.
That would explain why people using only hardware synths don't have any problem.

To those experiencing midi drifting when synced to live: try the "driver error compensation" lesson and check that the offset always stays the same, even after 10-15 minutes.
On my system I get variable recording latency and it just gets bigger after some time (with a Xone3D).
Obviously Live can't accurately compensate for this variable latency and you get that offset in your recordings, even if midi clock is fine.
Actually, in my all hardware no softsynth Ableton controlled setup, I DID experience MIDI drift.
EDIT: I should mention that the drift is not the same as a delay. The clock speeds up and slows down randomly. Over a period of time (roughly one measure), the clock is, on average, accurate. Each "slow down" is accompanied by a "speed up". Sequencers will, in general, keep up with Ableton, but with fluxuations in their ability to hit notes or drum hits at the right time.

I fixed this by using a hardware clock and a crazy assed patch configuration using MIDIOX.
Here is the post where I explain how I "fixed" it:
EddieJ wrote:A little about the bug before I go on:
Many of us PC users have found that Ableton Live is a little less than ideal when sending MIDI clock to external gear. This is especially noticeable when using external sequencers, drum machines, arps, and tempo synced delays and LFO's.
I managed to finagle a work around.
It involves software known as MIDI OX. MIDIOX is powerful stuff, but I only use it in this single application.
You can get MIDIOX at :
http://www.midiox.com/
Here is what I do.
I use my ESX as the master clock. In MIDI OX, I route clock from the ESX to the other outputs on my USB-MIDI interface, in this case my MIDISPORT 4x4.
I then disable all sync settings in Ableton except for taking sync in from my ESX.
In this picture, the ESX is coming in on input C. I route it to the outputs A, B and D.
Image
Each of those blocks in the paths is a MIDI filter. In there, I deselect everything except for the clock:
Image

While this doesn't mean I've fixed Ableton's clock (or cleaned their clocks for that matter), this method means I can get good clock to all my synths while still sending and receiving notes and other MIDI info in Ableton Live.
In fact, this has the added benefit of sending the reset that Live doesn't transmit, allowing my mod sequencer in the MS2000R to go back to the beginning. It also lets me have clock when Ableton Live isn't playing, something I didn't have before.

dbone
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"no single reason for midi clock problems"

Post by dbone » Wed Feb 07, 2007 7:03 pm

Wow... Forwarded Eddie's solution and proof that the problem CAN be isolated to Live. Another canned response (shocking, I know) but they DO acknowledge there's a problem.


There's no single reason for midi clock problems (we would have fixed
this long ago if it would be the case), on a lot of systems it works, on
other systems not and there are many causes for this ranging from driver
problems, usb communictation issues etc.

Best,
Dom Wilms

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