Driver Error Compensation

  • Live Versions: Live 9.2 and later
  • Operating System: All

Background

Your audio interface reports a specific latency value to Live. This value is used to offset recording audio and MIDI when the recording track's monitor is set to "Off". However certain audio interfaces may report an inaccurate latency, which will result in recordings which need to be manually aligned in order to sync up correctly. Driver Error Compensation allows Live to compensate automatically for any inaccurate latencies. If a Driver Error Compensation value has been set, then Live will offset the recordings by the specified amount so that they play in sync with the rest of your set.

Important:

  • Although the "Overall Latency" amount in Live's Audio preferences is recalculated when Driver Error Compensation is adjusted, it does not affect overall latency in Live for playback (only for recording).
  • Driver Error Compensation is only applied if the monitor on the recording track is set to "off". If monitoring AND recording on a track where the monitor is set to "In" or "Auto", then Driver Error Compensation is not applied.
  • It's only needed if you have an interface which is not reporting its correct latency to Live.
  • It's only relevant in situations where you are recording audio or MIDI from an external source.

 Check our How to reduce latency article for tips on what to do if you are experiencing high latency in Live.

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Which interfaces require a Driver Error Compensation adjustment?

Audio interfaces using their own native Core Audio or ASIO Drivers

Interfaces running in Native mode report accurate latency values, meaning that there should be no need to adjust Driver Error Compensation.

Note: Certain devices offer both Native modes and Class Compliant modes. We recommend using those devices in Native Mode.

Class-compliant audio interfaces

Interfaces running in class compliant mode (which use the built-in driver of the system itself) report latencies inaccurately, therefore Driver Error Compensation should be used.

Built-in Soundcards

Mac and PC built-in soundcards do not report latencies accurately. Not only are they inaccurately reported, but the latency value grows as the buffer size increases, therefore Driver Error Compensation should be used.

How to calculate the correct Driver Error Compensation value

Live has a built-in lesson including a specifically calibrated set which allows you to set Driver Error Compensation. For the lesson you will need a cable and an audio interface with at least one physical input and output. This can be found in the help view:

Help > Help View > Audio I/O > Page 8 of the Lesson, click the link for Driver Error Compensation.

The Driver Error Compensation value can be positive or negative, depending on the specific offset needed. The value is only correct at the buffer size and sample rate used when testing. If either of these change then it needs to be calculated again and adjusted.

 Note: If Driver error compensation is set to an extreme amount or used when it doesn't need to be, it can cause issues. If in doubt about whether to adjust Driver Error Compensation or not, it's best to leave it at zero.

Finding out more about Latency