Lowest latency you can reach for virtual pianos

Hey guys,

I want to build a DAW just for live playing of virtual pianos (like Ravenscroft or NI Kontakt Pianos).
How low can you get the latency?
What is your setup?

For everyone who plays virtual pianos:

Can you please post:

  1. latency (as shown in Cantabile)
  2. buffer-size @ sampling rate
  3. What is your CPU?
  4. What is your interface?
  5. What software instrument do you play?

I don’t know how or if virtual pianos a different from other instruments.
I get problems withs cracks and pops with the virtual pianos, when I am in low latency settings and hold down the pedal an repeatedly grind up and down the keyboard. So please try that and then post, what setup works safe for you.


Hi Albert,

I run 64 samples @ 48kHz on a Focusrite Scarlett 18i20 2nd gen, giving me a latency of 1.33ms (as shown by Cantabile).
Processor is an Intel i7 4700MQ.
I use Pianoteq Stage for my piano sounds. With K2, Steinway D, Steinway B and Steingraeber instrument packs it is an absolute joy to play, not very expensive when it comes to hard cash or processing power.

Depending on the gig I’m at I may run at 128 samples if the songs require Serum. Serum often chokes the processor on 64 samples and 128 still gives me a latency of 2.67ms.

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  • Latency: Should be about 2,3ms.
  • Buffersize: 96 samples with double-buffer activated @ 44.1kHz
  • i7-7700k
  • RME Babyface Pro
  • Ravenscroft 275

Great guys!

@FantomXR: At what samplerate are those settings?

I run it at 44.1kHz.

  1. Cantabile latency (buffer duration): 2.90 ms
  2. 128 samples @44.1kHz
  3. Intel i7-7700k @ 4.2 GHz in my studio machine, i7-4720HQ @ 2.60 in my live laptop
  4. main: RME Babyface 1st gen, secondary: Zoom UAC-2
  5. main: Addictive keys, secondary: Pianoteq 6.



Unfortunately this won’t really tell you much. There is a good deal of latency in the system not included in the number given by whatever DAW you’re using. ADC conversion time, USB driver latency, etc.

This post compares many real world latency measurements for the major audio interfaces out there.


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A quick Q - these low latency readings are from a USB midi controller through a usb cable to the RME or Focusrite? And they are lower latency because the USB drivers to these interfaces are better than ASIO4ALL? Or is this 5 pin midi to USB midi interface?

I tried both MIDI cable from Kawai MP7 and built in USB from Kawai MP7.
The second part I don’t understand. MIDI has nothing to do with ASIO.
ASIO4all can be as fast or faster than the manufacturer driver of an audio interface.
Sorry for the late reply.