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  #1  
Old 07-07-2013, 11:31 PM
ATLracing ATLracing is offline
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Default Recorded audio is not playing back in sync with other tracks

I recently purchased a copy of Pro Tools 11 (the student version) and a Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 interface. When I purchased the equipment, I intended to record guitar/drum/bass/piano tracks, then master them and have decently professional sounding demos.

As soon as I finished installing the software and setting up the hardware, I immediately tested it by attempting to lay down a guitar track over a drum sample that had come with Pro Tools. Unfortunately, upon playing back the recorded mix, I was surprised to hear that my guitar playing sounded off time with the drums. Thinking that my playing must be a little rusty, I attempted multiple times to rerecord the part with tighter rhythm, but even though my guitar playing sounded perfectly in time through the monitors as I played, when I went back to listen to the recorded tracks, they were always off time.

First I suspected that latency was to blame, but I got my system running with a 64 sample buffer and a total round trip latency of 10.2 milliseconds (as measured by a Centrance ASIO latency tester), which is about the time it takes sound waves to travel 12 feet at sea level and shouldn't be significant. Even when I turned on direct monitoring (which should have almost no latency, the problem persisted). Not only that, but I could easily play along with the tracks on time while recording. It was only when I went to play them back that I could tell they were out of sync.

So, I'm wondering why my recorded tracks aren't syncing properly. Do I need to calibrate something in Pro Tools? Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 07-08-2013, 12:52 AM
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crizdee crizdee is offline
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Default Re: Recorded audio is not playing back in sync with other tracks

Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLracing View Post
I recently purchased a copy of Pro Tools 11 (the student version) and a Native Instruments Komplete Audio 6 interface. When I purchased the equipment, I intended to record guitar/drum/bass/piano tracks, then master them and have decently professional sounding demos.

As soon as I finished installing the software and setting up the hardware, I immediately tested it by attempting to lay down a guitar track over a drum sample that had come with Pro Tools. Unfortunately, upon playing back the recorded mix, I was surprised to hear that my guitar playing sounded off time with the drums. Thinking that my playing must be a little rusty, I attempted multiple times to rerecord the part with tighter rhythm, but even though my guitar playing sounded perfectly in time through the monitors as I played, when I went back to listen to the recorded tracks, they were always off time.

First I suspected that latency was to blame, but I got my system running with a 64 sample buffer and a total round trip latency of 10.2 milliseconds (as measured by a Centrance ASIO latency tester), which is about the time it takes sound waves to travel 12 feet at sea level and shouldn't be significant. Even when I turned on direct monitoring (which should have almost no latency, the problem persisted). Not only that, but I could easily play along with the tracks on time while recording. It was only when I went to play them back that I could tell they were out of sync.

So, I'm wondering why my recorded tracks aren't syncing properly. Do I need to calibrate something in Pro Tools? Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks!
Hi,

Have you got delay compensation turned on?
Are you playing through any plugins?
Do you have any plugins on the mix bus?
Are all tracks routed to the same bus/output?



Chris
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  #3  
Old 07-08-2013, 07:35 AM
ATLracing ATLracing is offline
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Default Re: Recorded audio is not playing back in sync with other tracks

Quote:
Originally Posted by crizdee View Post
Hi,

Have you got delay compensation turned on?
Are you playing through any plugins?
Do you have any plugins on the mix bus?
Are all tracks routed to the same bus/output?



Chris
Thanks for the reply. I believe the answer to all those questions is yes, with the exception of the plugins on the mix bus. Delay compensation is on, but doesn't report any delay/correction. I found that by manually adding compensation, I can improve the synchronization of my tracks, but this feels like it shouldn't be a necessary. I am using amp modeling software (Guitar Rig 5), but it isn't reporting any latency, and I was under the impression that it shouldn't cause any (correct me if I'm wrong). Turning on direct monitoring on my interface didn't help though, so I'm fairly certain that isn't the problem. I don't think I have any plugins on the mix bus, but I'm not entirely sure what that is. I currently put my modeling plugin on an AUX stereo track, which I use as a bus, then run my guitar tracks through it. The drums are, of course, not running through that same bus (it would distort them), but all outputs are the same.

I'm beginning to think I should try a complete re-install of Windows and Pro Tools, as no one else seems to have had this problem.

Last edited by ATLracing; 07-08-2013 at 10:07 AM.
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Old 07-08-2013, 08:41 AM
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scrnplyr scrnplyr is offline
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Default Re: Recorded audio is not playing back in sync with other tracks

I had a similar sync problem when I first bought PT9/10 over a year ago. I recorded a few test tracks: first the Boom drum machine, then a guitar track using the GTR plug in and a bass track using sansamp PI. It sounded good when I recorded the tracks, although I noticed some minor latency, esp on the acoustic guitar going direct into the mbox pro interface.

Here's where it got interesting...when I played the recording back from the beginning of the drum track, all the tracks played in sync. If I stopped the recording after the verse and tried to start replay from the verse position, the drums immediately were out of sync - while the guitar and bass were still in sync with each other just out of sync with the drums. I talked to AVID tech support, I came down here to the DUC to get some help (they tried valiantly but no luck) and I reached out to several audio tech gurus I've known for many years here in LA - none could solve the mystery no matter how many work arounds were suggested and tried.

At the end of the day I could not figure out why the tracks would be "in sync" if I started the recording from the beginning but out of sync if I started it anywhere else in the recording. I narrowed it down to 2 possibilities: 1. I had somehow accidentally "marked" a different time signature on the drum track using the search marks, but failed to do so on the accompanying instrument tracks 2. the "composer" button (on the transporter) was engaged causing playback/timing issues.

I have no idea if those were the reasons for the out of sync issue, but the good news is that as soon as I learned a little more about how to set up and use PTs properly I have had zero sync issues on some 20 sessions since the first fubar session.

Make sure you have your session set up properly - there are many variables involved. As an exercise you might want to do several practice sessions using the session templates. The templates take some of the guess work out of the set up. I would also strongly suggest you get a book like Ignite or any other support material you can find and read as much as you can about setting up your session. The learning curve is sometimes arduous in PT and since you're using 11 you might have to wait a few weeks for commercial manuals and support materials to become avail. I would use materials from 9 or 10 to help navigate the basic parameters which should be similar to 11.

Good luck.
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  #5  
Old 07-08-2013, 05:52 PM
ATLracing ATLracing is offline
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Default Re: Recorded audio is not playing back in sync with other tracks

Quote:
Originally Posted by scrnplyr View Post
I had a similar sync problem when I first bought PT9/10 over a year ago. I recorded a few test tracks: first the Boom drum machine, then a guitar track using the GTR plug in and a bass track using sansamp PI. It sounded good when I recorded the tracks, although I noticed some minor latency, esp on the acoustic guitar going direct into the mbox pro interface.

Here's where it got interesting...when I played the recording back from the beginning of the drum track, all the tracks played in sync. If I stopped the recording after the verse and tried to start replay from the verse position, the drums immediately were out of sync - while the guitar and bass were still in sync with each other just out of sync with the drums. I talked to AVID tech support, I came down here to the DUC to get some help (they tried valiantly but no luck) and I reached out to several audio tech gurus I've known for many years here in LA - none could solve the mystery no matter how many work arounds were suggested and tried.

At the end of the day I could not figure out why the tracks would be "in sync" if I started the recording from the beginning but out of sync if I started it anywhere else in the recording. I narrowed it down to 2 possibilities: 1. I had somehow accidentally "marked" a different time signature on the drum track using the search marks, but failed to do so on the accompanying instrument tracks 2. the "composer" button (on the transporter) was engaged causing playback/timing issues.

I have no idea if those were the reasons for the out of sync issue, but the good news is that as soon as I learned a little more about how to set up and use PTs properly I have had zero sync issues on some 20 sessions since the first fubar session.

Make sure you have your session set up properly - there are many variables involved. As an exercise you might want to do several practice sessions using the session templates. The templates take some of the guess work out of the set up. I would also strongly suggest you get a book like Ignite or any other support material you can find and read as much as you can about setting up your session. The learning curve is sometimes arduous in PT and since you're using 11 you might have to wait a few weeks for commercial manuals and support materials to become avail. I would use materials from 9 or 10 to help navigate the basic parameters which should be similar to 11.

Good luck.
I think you're definitely on to something. Honestly, I probably don't know what I'm doing. Because of the frustration caused by this sync problem, I've been hesitant to start diving into Pro Tools guides, because I've felt that I should have the software working perfectly first, but the problem could likely be the result of an improper setup. Currently, I'm reformatting my desktop and slapping fresh copies of Windows and Pro Tools on there. This should hopefully rule out any bad install or broken plugin type causes. I also just purchased Pro Tools 10 Ignite Kindle Edition, and I plan to start reading through that while I wait for all my drivers and software to install.

Thanks for the advice. Whether or not it fixes my bizarre sync issues (and I think it likely will), I'm sure this book is going to really improve my understanding of Pro Tools.
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