When you first start Pianissimo in stand alone mode, you should make sure that the audio latency response is set up properly. All sound devices and sound cards are not created equal and some have better performance than others. In addition, your computer's speed will make a difference in audio performance. Adjusting your sound device's performance will be a balancing act between latency versus gapping or breaks in continuous sound.
If you are recording audio with Pianissimo's built in monitoring or playing virtual instruments, you will definitely need to adjust your latency response properly.
Choosing An Audio Driver Type
1. Click "Preferences" from the "File" menu.
2. Click on the "Sound Device" tab.
3. For Vista users, the default choice is "WaveRT". If you have a slower computer, you may need to adjust the latency to a higher value. (1000 milliseconds = 1 second.) WaveRT is recommended if you have Vista. If "WaveRT" is enabled, click it. (WaveRT stands for Wave Real Time.)
4. If you don't have Vista, the next option is "ASIO". If available, click "ASIO". If it is grayed out, go to your sound device or sound card manufacturer's website and install the latest drivers. Click on the "ASIO Device" and choose the sound device or sound card you wish to use. You can adjust the settings of the ASIO device by clicking "Open Mixer". Each ASIO driver is implemented differently and so you will have to consult the manual or help for your sound device in order to adjust the latency response. Make sure that the "Default Output (Playback)" is set to the correct device so that you will hear audio properly.
5. If you don't have Vista or an ASIO option enabled, you have to use the last option "Wave". Click the "Wave" radio button. To reduce latency, decrease the "Number Of Buffers" and reduce the "Buffer Size". As you adjust these fields, the "Latency" field will update. You will have to make adjustments, click "OK" and play some audio. 100 milliseconds or less is tolerable. 20 milliseconds or less is preferred.
Computer Speed Consideration
If you have a slower computer, you may need to adjust your latency to be longer in order to avoid gapping or breaks in the audio. If you are hearing breaks in the audio, you will need to increase your latency. Alternatively, you may need to purchase a higher performance sound device or sound card designed with music recording and playback in mind. Changing the latency will depend on what type of audio driver you are using. See the section above on "Choosing An Audio Driver Type" for more information. Another good speed enhancement is to de-fragment your hard drive.
Shutting Down Unnecessary Software
When using Pianissimo, shut down unnecessary programs such as email, instant messaging, and your web browser. Each additional program uses your computer's memory and CPU, and, in many cases, it will cause performance to suffer in Pianissimo. Check the Window's task manager to see what programs are using a lot of memory or CPU usage. On XP and Vista, you can bring up the task manager by pressing Ctrl+Alt+Delete. If you can remember to reactivate your anti-virus software, shut down your anti-virus software while using Pianissimo. HOWEVER, DON'T FORGET TO TURN YOUR ANTI-VIRUS SOFTWARE BACK ON WHEN YOU ACCESS YOUR EMAIL OR THE INTERNET!
Get The Latest Drivers
Always make sure to have the latest drivers for your sound device in order to get the best performance and quality in your recordings! Visit the website for your sound device or sound card to install the latest drivers. (Even if you just purchased the device, it is very likely that the included drivers are out of date already.)