Re: Weird behavior from BIAB (I think it's weird anyway)

David H. Bailey

On 6/4/2020 8:30 AM, Steven wrote:
Hello All,
I have BIAB 2017 installed on 2 computers.  My laptop running win 7 with a fairly small basic installation and I have the second on the desktop machine running my television and stereo system (windows 10 with the full installation with all the real tracks I have, etc.).
I put together a nice practice file of "days of wine and roses" on the laptop with a very simple straight forward melody (no syncopation) and simple chord progression using _jazzfred (midi version) as a style which played perfectly.
I then migrated the BIAB file to the desktop machine and on starting BIAB was told there was a real track version of the style that would give a better sound. So I said sure lets try it.  On starting to play it, the melody was completely out of synch with the accompaniment.  I checked the notation window and the melody appeared to be written correctly with notes starting at the beginning of the measures, i.e. nothing seemed to be off from what I could see.  As a last resort i switched back to _jazzfred, the midi version and everything played perfectly with no synch issues..
Is there any kind of known issue with this BIAB build where switching from the midi to real tracks version causes the file to loose synch or have other issues, or is this just a one time anomaly?
At this point I'm not sure I want to upgrade because I have not seen the improvements outweighing the cost for the software.
MIDI has zero latency because it's just a series of instructions sent to a sound source at the speed that electricity travels over wires the distance from your computer to your MIDI device (okay, there's some latency but it's in the micro-seconds category and so not perceivable by most humans.) The sounds that are produced are already in memory in that device so they don't need to be read from a hard-disk. If you're having the MIDI played through your computer's soundcard, it's an even shorter travel time so even less MIDI latency than over USB to an external module or keyboard.

Audio always has latency because it takes time for the computer's CPU to read the audio data into RAM, then process the commands, then send the sound to the output device.

My advice is not to mix audio with midi -- I know that there are some BIAB styles which mix both but I believe PGMusic programmed some algorithm into BIAB so that it appears not to have a discrepancy in the sounds. But playing a melody is different since PGMusic doesn't have any control over processing what notes you've played.

You can adjust the latency in the Options menu, Midi/Audio Driver Setup dialog. Try various values in the latency box and see if that makes your melody and the realtracks align better.

David H. Bailey

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