VoiceMeeter or Network?

This is a shout out to @terrybritton who is the VoiceMeeter Maven, but feel free to chip in! :slight_smile:
I want to bring some Cantabile setups into my DAW.
I’m already networking two hefty PCs with Vienna Ensemble Pro.
The question is now whether to:

  1. Run Cantabile on a laptop and bring it into the DAW (Nuendo) using something like ReStream
  2. Run Cantabile on the main PC alongside Nuendo and use ReStream or Voice Meeter.
    I want it to be the lowest latency as these are guitar setups I want to play through live - recording the clean audio onto the DAW and looping it through Cantabile.

Anyone have any suggestions before I start wading into the possibilities?
Many thanks, Compadres!

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I’ll be following this topic with keen interest Ade. I have similar questions and am currently building a brand new studio DAW PC which will be primarily for REAPER.
My older PCs could work well as a form of hardware synth but using software VST instruments running Cantabile networked to the new rig.

I will tell you the truth - I haven’t been using Voicemeeter’s VBAN network streaming function except for streaming music to another computer elsewhere in the house. I connect my two computers via Digital-to-Analog and or S/PDIF using two MOTU units (an 828 and Ultralite mk3 hybrid). I’m not certain at all how good the latency would be using Voicemeeter over a network. I did one small experiment and don’t recall it being acceptable, but it might have been other settings.

Voicemeeter is fantastic for bringing my DAWs and Cantabile into OBS to make video recordings, and I use it for its sample-rate-conversion to overcome problems with my MOTU boxes wanting to crank the internal samples rates every time my sample rate changes (videos, tunes). But not yet for networking.

I’m betting @Torsten is the person to talk to about network setups, though!

Terry

:wink: Hmm, you’ve put me on the spot here…

TBH, I’m not so much into audio networking (yet) - the only truly workable solutions like Dante are a bit too expensive for my simple usage - so I’m not really the authority here, but maybe I can give some pointers here.

For recording Cantabile into my DAW (Cubase or Studio One), I use two scenarios:

  • When recording rehearsals, the simplest way is to grab all channels off my digital mixing desk (Mackie DL32R) via multichannel USB. Yes, there are two DA / AD conversions en route, but I can live with that for simple rehearsal recordings. During rehearsals, my Cantabile setup runs on my laptop (with a decent interface), the DAW on my studio PC, so I’m treating Cantabile just like any old hardware synth / guitar amp. Simple and robust ;-). Something to consider if you have a decent audio interface on your laptop.

  • When I want to stay inside my DAW PC, I run Cantabile alongside my DAW. Since I have an RME Fireface UFX in my studio setup, it’s possible to use different output channels for Cubase and Cantabile, so both can coexist happily. Now I route Cantabile’s output into the “DAW recording” loopback channel in my mixer setup, so it appears as an audio input in my DAW (no latency!). Now I can record Cantabile’s output in my DAW. The only thing I need to make sure of is that my MIDI keyboard is only activated in Cantabile and not in my DAW, otherwise the two will fight for the MIDI port…Now this will work only with an audio interface with some routing capabilities, but maybe you have something like this in your setup? Otherwise you could use Voicemeeter or Virtual Audio Cable (with ASIO4ALL) to route audio from Cantabile to your DAW within the box. But that will probably create some latency issues.

  • If you want to record guitars clean, I’d suggest you split your signal within Cantabile - route the clean signal (maybe after some pre-processing) to a separate output that you route to your DAW, but play and monitor your guitar through Cantabile directly, without going through the DAW and back. This way you get lowest latency for monitoring, but also a clean signal into your DAW.

  • I haven’t played around with ReaStream yet, but it may also be an interesting scenario to get your clean guitar to your DAW: just put one (sending) ReaStream instance into your Cantabile song BEFORE the amp plugin, play your guitar through your Cantabile setup normally and record in your DAW with a (receiving) ReaStream plugin. It looks like you could also use ReaStream to connect your DAW and Cantabile on one machine → look here

One other option you could look at is Dante Via - Dante networking without needing any physical Dante devices. With Dante Via, you can connect two PCs over a (wired) network and directly connect your applications. They offer a 30 day trial - why don’t you download the trial and give it a shake - and tell us all what worked and what didn’t!!

Cheers,

Torsten

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Thanks lads.
I do have a selection of audio interfaces so using spdif as a send/return and using Nuendo/Cubase’s External FX routing would be a reasonable two cable, digital, solution. That would always require the laptop to be available though, unless I made sure that I rendered as I went along (which one would have to do anyway, if Cantabile were to be used for several alternative setups).

I will give ReaStream a go and see how that works out. That, in theory, should work with any computers on the network, and ‘internally’ to create inter-app audio.

I’ll be back - and if I’m not… send a search party! :smiley:

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First report with ReaStream.

  1. It crashes Nuendo profoundly. Any attempt to quit the program will lock my entire computer up. Have to avoid quitting Nuendo directly and use restart. 3 finger salute will lock up computer.
  2. Wrapping ReaStream inside DDMF Metaplugin seems to protect the entire situation and the plugin loads correctly.
  3. Null audio card in Cantabile and set the buffer as low as can be.
  4. Preliminary test sending live synth audio from Cantabile to Nuendo worked immediately! As @Torsten suggested, Cantabile’s ReaStream set to ‘broadcast’ (I used ‘local’) and Nuendo’s set to receive as a Group insert.

When compared with the same source instrument hosted directly in Nuendo, the difference between two simultaneous recordings is 19 ms - with the hardware set to a buffer of 64. Increasing the ASIO buffer appears to create a doubling of that buffer so that a distinct 245 delay is heard at the ReaStream synth when the buffer is at 768

And then… something really weird was noted.
If Cantabile is also set to 768, that huge delay drops to 40 ms!

So now, to test with matching buffers at low latency:
With both hosts set to 64 the delay is 1 ms.
That means, that when I wire this correctly, the round trip of sending the clean signal from the DAW to Cantabile and back again should be 2ms, not counting any possible latency induced by the plugins themselves.
That seems pretty acceptable - but the proof of the pudding, as they say…

I’ll be back :slight_smile:

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I think it’s going to be dual audio interfaces and SPDIF.
At 128, the round trip is taking 45ms.
There must have been an error in that 1 ms reading.

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