Overbridge latency in Ableton Live

agreed, I have 2 elektron boxes with Overbridge capabilities (digitone and Rytm), have owned up to 4 elektrons with Overbridge at one point, and don’t use Overbridge at all because it simply does not cooperate with my other sound card on latencies. the only workable solution is to use my proper soundcard for everything, and rely on my USAMO for DAW to hardware sync tightening.

elektron started to design themselves into this corner when they started producing synthesizers without individual outputs (digitone, digitakt), but other than this self-constraining design choice, they have no good reason to make USB audio such a priority for their equipment.

That workable solution doesn’t even work anymore last time I checked. It did with the old Overbridge and the ‘closed beta’ version, ever since the ‘public beta’ was released it introduced automatic latency compensation which you can’t disable even by turning clock off in OB, it’s meant to help obviously but it doesn’t account for people who want to keep using their audio interface as clock and just use OB for it’s UI and modulations, it in turn throws everything off with the project sync every time so it’s just a nuisance.

I’ve raised tickets going back about a year but got no response so I’ve just gave up on OB altogether unfortunately which is a bit of an anti climax.

I’ve got it all working with other synths and sequencers and plugins all in sync perfectly so it does work and being able to multitrack record like that is damn amazing without having to buy mixers and consoles etc,
but yeah it was difficult because overbridge has its own latency and makes it difficult to work with a second soundcard, think it just needs some type of offset controls for latency

The really frustrating thing is that was possible to bypass all this with the closed beta of Overbridge but then it was for some reason decided that this should be scrapped when they released the Public beta.

I originally bought the A4 mk2 when it first came out in hopes of it being a soundcard that would also host 2 external synths, I got tired waiting and bought an Ultralite mk4. I’ve no regrets buying the A4 as it has turned out to be a multifunctional beast aside from all that but it would nice to be able to use OB just for the interface. It worked fine before, in fact I could even use my soundcard for clock and also stream the individual A4 tracks with just a little track delay without it messing up the entire sync of the project, all with the closed beta. I’m glad this thread has been started as I’ve posted countless times on here about this to little response so I thought I was alone in this. Hopefully more people with these frustrations will post about it so Elektron take heed as clearly they can adjust it to how it was before.

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I’m wondering if anyone else has a good workaround for this particular issue: In Ableton, I’m having a hard time with the MIDI input latency when the plugin is enabled. I tried “deactivating” it (w the yellow button on the plugin), but discovered you actually have to delete the plugin from the track to make the latency go away.

edit: sorry just realized deleting the plugin erases all your routing, so there must be a simple solution I’m not aware of to “disable” the plugin. Thank you to anyone who can offer me the solution.

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@jbone1313 - ty very much, this def helps. I’d still prefer an easy “on/off” for the plugin so that I can record midi without the latency it introduces. Is there a good method for working this way? I’m curious how most people are using overbridge in conjunction with live recording midi so, how are people doing this. Is it more common to just accept it and quantize your midi after recording?

There’s also the option to use the Elektron sequencer and record the midi (not via OB) to Ableton that way, only introducing OB after you’re done recording your midi. I wonder if people have tried this and found it’s problematic for workflow, and if so, why? (Please help save me from spending hours/days trying a workflow and even getting used to it, only to realize it’s problematic at some later stage in the process)

Egh, dealing with Ableton latency is not easy.

I don’t have a simple solution, and I don’t use Overbridge.

Your best bet is to try to understand how Ableton deals with latency (conceptually), measure your environment, and test your use case.

The link I posted helps explain what happens.

I have been thinking about a solution to this for a long time , and one avenue I have not been able to investigate since I have zero knowledge about coding is making a plug-in that can host other plugins but lie about any induced latency that is created by the overbridge plugins , kind of a very very basic version of metaplugin that only has the capability to falsely report a zero latency to the daw

Have you tried hosting it in a maxforlive device? that should work. and you can report whatever latency you like.
have you ever done something in max? then it should be doable in 5 minutes

That would be an optimal solution … I did not realize you could host a vst in max for live ! Do you happen to know how to control what latency a max patch in live reports ? I feel stupid that I haven’t checked out this possibility, I will definitely look into it

Correction. Ableton delays everything else. Not OB.

I’m fairly new to OB and I’m very dissapointed by the latency issue, especially that I’ve spent money for upgrading to Win10 and new soundcard (because the old one has no driver support for Win10) to be able to use OB2.

My use case is Ableton to record live jam separate audio tracks from Digitone and Analog FourMK1 via OB and some instruments via external audio input to the soundcard. Over 30ms of latency makes me not possible to play instruments in time, or do some finger-druming-like things or short live additions to sequences :(. I thought I could make workaround if the DAW does not have to be synced with OB, but just purely record the stream. But there is another obstacle: I can’t clock my Digitone nor A4 via MIDI if I’m in OB mode.

Is there any way to make DN and A4 syncable from other hw clock via MIDI, while audio streams of separate tracks are only streamed and then recorded in DAW?

In Ableton, turn on “Reduced Latency When Monitoring.” That should help you. Google it, and it will explain the details.

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I had it turned on.
BTW: I managed with syncing via MIDI in OB mode, when turned sync off under OB.
I still need to compensate A4 OB track by 30ms to get it in sync with audio in monitored from DAW. There has been also a moment I had to go over 60ms.
But one thing is confusing :crazy_face: When turned monitoring off on audio in track and run audio directly on mixer to the speaker, I have kick from A4 OB and kick from other gear running directly to speakers in sync :crazy_face: - I would expect the one from A4 OB even more delayed to the direct audio. Of course this is good, but confused me totally - can anyone help to understand?

I don’t know your particular set-up, but I do know that trying to “sync” Ableton or most any DAW will give you latency. The reason is that when monitoring the audio going into the DAW, there is a millisecond amount of time for the audio to go into the application, for the application to then process that audio and then the application to send it out…There is really no work around to that, besides a sync box like a ERM Multi clock, where it actually sort of mechanically, externally syncs your DAW. Actually, I’ve heard a rumor that Ableton at some point is working on audio sync.
This is my unprofessional theory. The only way I have gotten to record audio into a DAW in sync, is to just record each individual part, using the setting in my DAW which starts the sequencer just a 14ms late (midi clock offset in Bitwig), so that the recording is perfectly recorded at the BPM Bitwig recorded it’s at. But, if I wanted to play what I recorded back, it will not be in sync with my gear, only the next recording I do.

So, basically, it’s not OB, it’s science and time (And software developers not realizing how many people want something). I’ve heard great things about RME drivers. I’ve heard great things about ERM Multi Clock…But, to be honest, if you search this forum for Ableton sync, you will see 100’s of posts about this very topic, and not many conclusion’s.

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Thanks thoughtstarZ .

I know more or less the technical background for latency in general (serial data processing in, processing out, drivers along the way, etc etc.)
I was suprised that a signal going directly from Octratrack to speakers (without passing it through DAW) is in sync with signal going from A4 via USB to DAW and then from DAW to speakers, which I’d expected to be delayed :).

BTW: there is a method to record into DAW without latency, this video explains: How to Record Without Latency in Ableton Live - YouTube so you don’t need to shift the midi when recording, or compensate after recording :slight_smile:

If ur seeing 60ms on ableton with “reduce latency” active, you need a better computer.
Also remember to set the plugin buffer size in overbridge control panel

Hi Overbridge Users! I recently started using Overbridge under Ableton 11 and everything seems to work as expected so far. There is one thing I’m trying to optimize: All audio tracks recorded via Overbridge are a tiny bit too early, i.e. I need to shift all tracks back some fraction of a millisecond. My regular audio tracks (recorded via physical audio inputs) are perfectly on beat. Can you help me, at what stage/by which function I can introduce the delay for the Overbridge tracks? Thanks! :slight_smile: