Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5

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Jackel
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2010/12/22 16:10:25 (permalink)

Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5

I am experiencing very frequent dropouts when trying to do pretty much any playback in Sonar using my new Mackie blackbird.
 
I'm running windows 7 and Sonar 8.5.3 and I have up todate mackie drivers.
 
Is anyone using a blackbird similarly?  If so, are you have the same problems or can you tell me how you have it set up?
 
thanks

Jeff 
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    The Mule
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/01/24 15:38:05 (permalink)
    Jackel


    I am experiencing very frequent dropouts when trying to do pretty much any playback in Sonar using my new Mackie blackbird.
     
    I'm running windows 7 and Sonar 8.5.3 and I have up todate mackie drivers.
     
    Is anyone using a blackbird similarly?  If so, are you have the same problems or can you tell me how you have it set up?
     
    thanks

    I am having the same problem. Up to date drivers on everything. Brand new custom built PC. Music plays fine in media player. Sonar 8.5 up to date. Have tried every possible setup I can think of. I have disabled all hardware that is not needed to run sonar. I have adjusted buffer rate from 64 to 1024. I have dropouts when playing complete silence in Sonar! I am losing my mind! I run a pro studio and am out of business until I can get this resolved. Please help!!!
     
    windows 7 64bit
    Intel dh55tc mobo
    Intel i5 3.33ghz cpu
    4gb ddr3 ram
    mackie onyx blackbird sound card
    rosewill pci-e firewire card
    #2
    EBush
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/11 15:53:38 (permalink)

    Using Sonar 8 PE I run two Mackie Blackbirds with an older laptop (intel 3ghz and win xp) to capture 16 concurrent audio tracks in our rehearsal studio for mix down at home on a quad core desktop pc (audio data captured on the fly to an external usb conntected maxtor 500gb hard drive )....This works pretty well though get some audio glitches/artifacts. I haven't found buffer/cache settings to fix the issue yet so could use some advice. Of note is that I previously had two Onyx 400F interfaces for the same config (16 tracks/maxtor drive) which worked flawlessly until one of the units fw card died and couldn't repair.

    Have also tried the two blackbirds with my Win 7 quad core laptop but get constant drop outs (no audio glitches though)....

    I'm very interested if you've solved the drop out issue on the win 7 platform.

    Thanks
    #3
    Beagle
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/11 16:34:49 (permalink)
    mackie's drivers have been notorious for being horrible.  I know some people have resolved the problem by purchasing 3rd party drivers by CEntrance.  google it - I think the drivers were about $35 last I knew.

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    #4
    EBush
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/11 16:38:29 (permalink)
    Thanks for the tip Beagle...Is it your view then that the issue is with the drivers and not other settings in Sonar?

    Thanks!
    #5
    Beagle
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/11 17:30:07 (permalink)
    I don't mind trying to help you with settings in sonar to verify.  I just know that a lot of people had problems with the mackie drivers.

    are you trying to use WDM or ASIO driver mode?  I don't know for certain if the blackbirds will work in tandem in ASIO mode or not.

    what are your reported latency settings in OPTIONS>AUDIO?

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    EBush
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/11 17:50:18 (permalink)
    Thanks again Beagle...

    I'm using ASIO as the BBs only provide 2 channel operation in WDM and I need 16. Plus, I've always had good luck with ASIO in the past. 


    I've been unable to change the latency settings through the audio options tab in Sonar (can't move the slider). I have been able to make adjustments to larger buffer/higher latency through the Blackbird Control program..Currently running at the highest setting in the BB control panel and still getting the drop outs...I'm not aware if there is a way to allow Sonar to make the latency changes (as I was able to with the Onyx 400F units I was using)...


    I have not done any optimization of the win 7 laptop for audio (tho I have disabled the anti virus when recording)....


    One factor I've been considering though is that I had turned off the waveform generation when recording on the other laptop to save system resources and haven't made this change on the win 7 laptop...Not sure how much of an impact this has...


    Any thoughts?

    #7
    Beagle
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/11 18:02:34 (permalink)
    right - the slider only works for WDM and MME driver mode, not for ASIO.  when you're in ASIO driver mode you HAVE to change the latency settings in the soundcards' software.  SOME soundcard software won't change properly unless you close sonar, but it's supposed to be able to be changed when sonar is open and you click on the ASIO button at the bottom of that window.

    what waveform generation are you talking about?

    as far as "optimization" the only thing I did in win7 was disable the UAC (I would have done that regardless of whether it was my DAW or not - I HATE that controlling crap!)

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    #8
    EBush
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/11 21:35:55 (permalink)
    One issue may have been that I didn't restart sonar after changing the buffer setting in BB control.

    Waveform Generation - there is a way to disable having sonar generate the graphic waveform on your audio tracks while you are recording...(it does it after recording = and can take quite a while if its a long recording session). Its on the Global Options General tab as Display Waveform Preview While Recording...

    I haven't touched UAC yet though I did find a reference today in the Mackie documentation which advised to disable wireless adapters which I plan to try when my band rehearses tomorrow..We've been recording all our rehearsals and I've found it very helpful in getting everyone on the same page as to areas that need attention (esp when learning new material).

    Any other suggestions?   BTW, I enjoyed your website...good info and tunes!
    #9
    JonD
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/12 13:34:30 (permalink)
    Yeah, Mackie has a great reputation with their hardware... and terrible reputation with their drivers.

    That said, make sure you do all the optimization tweaks for DAW use.  Here's a good guide:

    http://support.presonus.c...indows-vista-windows-7

    (Disabling the power management in the BIOS - ie. Speedstep, C1E, etc - is especially important).




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    lfm
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/12 14:52:38 (permalink)
    A completely different approach to using BB might be what I planned to do last fall before BB was released(but I skipped due to delay in release).

    Background to this was that I just hate anything firewire after testing a couple of major brands.

    General tip - check DPC latency and turn off possible WLAN adapters. Major generator of dropouts and cracks and pops.

    Anyway...

    BB has a ADAT output that among other things are meant to be used to daisy chain two BB units, but may be used to connect to computer if that is equipped with a ADAT interface of some kind.

    So getting a clean ADAT interface to computer(like RME internal cards) could be one way to get around driver stuff with Mackie. From what I hears the Onyx preamps are excellent.
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    Beagle
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/07/12 15:02:50 (permalink)
    EBush


    One issue may have been that I didn't restart sonar after changing the buffer setting in BB control.

    Waveform Generation - there is a way to disable having sonar generate the graphic waveform on your audio tracks while you are recording...(it does it after recording = and can take quite a while if its a long recording session). Its on the Global Options General tab as Display Waveform Preview While Recording...

    I haven't touched UAC yet though I did find a reference today in the Mackie documentation which advised to disable wireless adapters which I plan to try when my band rehearses tomorrow..We've been recording all our rehearsals and I've found it very helpful in getting everyone on the same page as to areas that need attention (esp when learning new material).

    Any other suggestions?   BTW, I enjoyed your website...good info and tunes!

    thanks!
     
    I am not at my DAW right now and can't remember exactly where that function is to disable the waveform drawing during recording.  I'll try to look for it tonight.
     
    these guys posting above me here have some good suggestions as well.

    http://forum.christiansongwriters.org
    http://www.beaglesound.com/
    http://soundcloud.com/beaglesound/sets/featured-songs-1
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    #12
    lhrocker
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/08/15 13:29:43 (permalink)
    I have had good results with disabling the NIC cards on the computer/laptop when using any DAW software.  I had tons of dropouts with a Lexicon Omega when I had my NIC card enabled.  Once I disabled it, my dropout problems went away.  I just got a Blackbird last week and it's been running great.  It may be something to try.

    #13
    Beagle
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    Re:Mackie blackbird problems in Sonar 8.5 2011/08/15 15:28:06 (permalink)
    that's always a good thing to do - NICs, webcams, TV tuners, AV programs a lot of times will cause problems.

    I'm glad the blackbird is running good for you.  I've still heard mixed reports on the drivers, just like before.  some say it works, others not so much.

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