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Distorted Audio with Paramount 310

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Distorted Audio with Paramount 310

Postby damuehlbauer » Wed Feb 14, 2018 7:29 pm

I am exploring the Hauptwerk system (free edition) and Paramount 310, and notice significant distortion in the audio when I play large chords with a large registration. It sounds like the various voices are wavering. I have heard (but not played) large theatre pipe organs and played large analog organs and this sounds distorted to me.

I am using a Dell all-in-one computer with it's built-in Dell audio card, and Bose computer speakers. Based on what I read in the forum, this is perhaps due to computer's audio system. Eventually, I will have a dedicated computer with a better sound card, but I am just trying to determine if the distortion is something related to Hauptwerk, Paramount, or my computer.

Your thoughts? Things I should try to narrow down the problem?

Thanks!
Last edited by damuehlbauer on Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Distorted Audio with Paramount 310

Postby organtechnology » Wed Feb 14, 2018 8:49 pm

Probably a good place to start is the View tab>large floating control panels>audio midi performance.
This will show you things that might be causing your distortion.

The CPU is the audio system CPU and in the case of an on board sound card perhaps the main CPU of the computer. If it goes into the red, there is a problem with the driver for the sound card.

The level of digital audio is shown at the top of the box. If that meter is going into the red, reduce the level with the trim or the slider until it does not go into the red and only occasionally into the yellow.

The free edition has limited polyphony so check that you are not using too many pipes at once. Make certain that the computer can handle the required polyphony.

Best regards,

Thomas
Complete VPO systems powered by Hauptwerk™. Real Wood Consoles, PC or MAC Computer Sound Modules, Audio for Home or Church.
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Re: Distorted Audio with Paramount 310

Postby mdyde » Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:43 am

Hello David,

Thanks for the continued interest.

Yes -- to add to Thomas' reply (thanks, Thomas), please first let us know whether any of the meters on that control panel are going into (or nearly into) the red when the distortion occurs.

If the audio-'CPU' meter is sometimes going into the red on that screen when few or no pipes are sounding:

Unfortunately, the manufacturer-supplied drivers for built-in sound outputs in PCs often don't perform well enough for genuine 'pro audio' applications (reliable low-latency, real-time audio use, such as for virtual instruments like Hauptwerk). As a long-term solution, really it's best to look into getting a proper semi-professional/professional audio interface, which is often necessary on PCs in order to get reliable glitch-free audio at low enough latencies, and with sufficient performance, to be usable for playing virtual instrument software such as Hauptwerk in real-time, since professional/semi-professional audio interfaces (meant for recording studio use) are designed specifically for those things.

Sometimes the freeware ASIO4All driver can help to get reliable audio from a PC's built-in sound output: http://www.asio4all.com/ . Hence you could perhaps try that first, if you're happy with the audio quality from your PC's built-in sound output. If so: download and install the driver, configure it to use your PC's built-in sound output as its output device, reboot the PC, launch Hauptwerk, then select the ASIO4All driver on Hauptwerk's 'General settings | Audio outputs' screen. If that doesn't solve it:

We cover audio and MIDI interfaces here:

https://www.hauptwerk.com/clientuploads/documentation/PDF/HauptwerkPrerequisites.pdf
https://www.hauptwerk.com/clientuploads/documentation/PDF/HauptwerkBackgroundTechnicalInfoOnComputerHardware.pdf

For example, RME make very high-quality fully-professional audio interfaces, which should be ideal (although they aren't cheap), e.g.: http://www.rme-audio.de/en/products/fireface_uc.php . (We use RME's interfaces here, and we find them to be excellent, and extremely reliable.)

M-Audio are a popular (but usually reliable) make of semi-professional audio interfaces at a significantly lower price point: http://www.m-audio.com/products/browse/ ... interfaces . For example, their 'M-Track' series (M-Track II, M-Track Quad, or M-Track Eight) might be suitable candidates to consider. (I haven't tried the M-Track series myself, but I understand that they're popular with Hauptwerk users, and I've used various earlier M-Audio models, which were very reliable and gave good results).

There are also frequent discussions on this section (Audio / MIDI interfacing) of our forum about the advantages and disadvantages people have found with particular makes/models of audio/MIDI interfaces.

Also, to see whether your computer itself is performing well enough to support real-time audio, please download a utility called LatencyMon: http://www.resplendence.com/downloads (near the bottom of the page). Install and run it, then click the green 'play' arrow button in it and leave it running for half an hour or so. If the PC is performing sufficiently to be able to handle real-time audio it will (still) say 'Your system appears to be suitable for handling real-time audio ...' in green, like the screenshot here: http://www.resplendence.com/latencymon . If instead it says something in red indicating that the PC appears to have a problem for real-time audio then there is an underlying hardware/driver/low-level problem that needs to he resolved before you would be able to get reliable results from the PC (in which case employing the services of a computer technical expert such as Francois Ratte to try to get your existing PC performing properly: http://www.hauptwerkconsultant.com/ ... might be the easiest option).
Best regards,
Martin.

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Re: Distorted Audio with Paramount 310

Postby damuehlbauer » Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:37 pm

I ran the Latency check and it produced the following results:

Your system appears to be having trouble handling real-time audio and other tasks. You are likely to experience buffer underruns appearing as drop outs, clicks or pops. One or more DPC routines that belong to a driver running in your system appear to be executing for too long. One problem may be related to power management, disable CPU throttling settings in Control Panel and BIOS setup. Check for BIOS updates.

Since I plan to eventually purchase a dedicated computer for Hauptwerk, I think I will wait for that unit to make audio system upgrades.

Thanks for the information on this. This was very helpful!!
Last edited by damuehlbauer on Mon Feb 19, 2018 7:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Distorted Audio with Paramount 310

Postby mdyde » Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:43 pm

Thanks, David.

You're very welcome.
Best regards,
Martin.

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