Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

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Vincent Burel
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Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by Vincent Burel »

In some cases, Voicemeeter can generate static (cut in the sound) or a robot voice (sound is distorded because discontinued).
This can happend in the first minute... or after having worked well during hours.

In most of cases, you may RESTART AUDIO ENGINE (in Voicemeeter Menu) to get correct sound again.
but if the problem appears too much frequently, it can be a problem of configuration and audio device selection / configuration.

Output A1 device is crucial
Keep default settings (default buffer size / default engine mode) and select your best audio device as output A1 (giving the main stream): ASIO device if present (with 256 or 512 sample buffer size) … WDM or KS (512 sample buffer size) … MME as last choice (512-1024 sample buffer size).

Avoid Audio device Conflict
A typical problem comes when using ASIO Driver as output A1 and selecting the same device with another audio interface (WDM, MME, KS) as hardware input or other BUS. This is an Audio Device Conflict. If you select an ASIO device as main audio device (output A1) you must use ASIO routing capabilities (ASIO PATCH in Voicemeeter system settings) to assign ASIO channels to Voicemeeter physical input or output BUS (generally speaking: DO NOT SELECT THE SAME AUDIO DEVICE TWICE IN DIFFERENT AUDIO POINTS).

Check your Main Stream is stable
The best way to check that your output A1 device is running stable is to use the Voicemeeter banana or Potato integrated Recorder/player to playback some audio tracks and check that there is no problem, no cut, no crack... just the sound you expect.

Device selected as Output A1 gives the main stream
The output A1 device is used to generate the master audio stream, all other I/O and streams will be based on it. So this device must work correct. For WDM device, Voicemeeter opens it in EXCLUSIVE mode per default... But the device could refuse in some cases, or because already in use, or because Eclusive mode is disabled. Then this device will be used in SHARE mode (a "S" is diaplayed in System Settings Dialog box - right to the output A1 Device audio format). In this case, the stream might be unstable and it could be better to use KS or MME.

General rules:
All audio Apps should be connected to Voicemeeter or should not use same audio output device than Voicemeeter (to avoid audio device conflict). That’s why we also recommend to set Voicemeeter virtual audio I/O as default playback / recording device.

In all cases you must test it on significant duration to validate your configuration before going on air.
If the problem remains, send a screenshot of Voicemeeter and its system settings dialog box to let us see your configuration.

If the problem is located in a virtual audio path:
For example from Voicemeeter virtual output (BUS B1, B2 or B3) to a capture application (Discord, Skype, etc...). You may check the internal latency of the related VAIO (virtual audio I/O). The default number is 7168 samples, but in some cases it could be not enough to guarantee a stable stream on virtual link (pending on the buffer used by application connected on - for example 7168 sample could no be enough if the capture app use 4096 samples buffer). Then you may increase internal latency by the VBCABLE_ControlPanel app installed with Voicemeeter (there is one ControlPanel for each virtual audio cable - used as virtual audio I/O by Voicemeeter).
VoicemeeterVAIOLatency.jpg
VoicemeeterVAIOLatency.jpg (147.05 KiB) Viewed 7994 times
Note the internal latency is applied to the related virtual audio cable used as virtual audio I/O by voicemeeter. So the BUS B1 ouptut is using the same internal latency then the first virtual input. The BUS B2 is using the same than the second virtual input etc...
Vincent Burel
Site Admin
Posts: 1322
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2010 12:01 pm

Persistent audio crackling with Voicemeeter, cut or tic in the sound.

Post by Vincent Burel »

if nothing can help to get a stable stream, it usually means that one or several audio drivers are not well installed.
Also don't forget to REBOOT after audio driver installation (or de-installation) - this is also true for USB audio device that you plug on your computer (even if installation is automatic, it's better to reboot after).

Recommeded re-installation step by step:
1- remove all USB audio device + REBOOT.
2- de-install VB-CABLE one by one + REBOOT
3- de-install Voicemeeter + REBOOT
4- check your remaining audio devices are working ok.
5- check there is no presence of our virtual audio driver in Windows Device Manager (in both sections: multimedia controller and audio input output).
6- re-install VB-CABLE and Voicemeeter one by one , REBOOT after each operation, check your device list in Windows Sound Dialog box.
7- when all is re-installed, re-plug your USB audio device. check again your default playback and recording device
8- Run Voicemeeter and check systray option. Audio should work again correctly.

Anyway your VB-CABLE or Voicemeeter VAIO's must appear like on the picture below for Playback and Recording Devices. Otherwise you should re-install them correctly.
VBAudioDeviceList.gif
VBAudioDeviceList.gif (37.2 KiB) Viewed 90051 times
BOLL
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Joined: Sun Aug 28, 2016 6:06 pm
Location: Sweden
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Re: Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by BOLL »

I can apparently reply here so I'm going to add to this.

It seems VoiceMeeter and the Opus codec are not always playing well together, which is a hypotheses I came up with after multiple people I know have had the same issue with Discord and Mumble, a crackling voice stream, and both VoIP clients use the Opus codec for voice communication. Restarting the audio engine in VoiceMeeter rarely fixes it, while restarting the VoIP client appears to be the most reliable remedy.

I have no idea what the actually problem is, just figured it worth bringing up as I personally know at least four other people that has experienced the same issue. I do like to introduce VoiceMeeter to others!
Vincent Burel
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Posts: 1322
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2010 12:01 pm

Re: Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by Vincent Burel »

You may check your Voicemeeter VAIO used to connect VOIP app have 7168 samples internal latency min...
if using additionnal VB-CABLE, check the same parameter and possibly use in 44.1 or 48kHz internal samplerate (instead of 96 kHz).
BOLL
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Aug 28, 2016 6:06 pm
Location: Sweden
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Re: Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by BOLL »

Yup, running 48 kHz on the Aux virtual input with 7168 samples which is where I get the VoIP output piped through :?: This seems to be coming from people's microphones though, meaning their virtual output, as everyone else in a conversation hears the crackling, not just me. :shock: No VB Cable in use. It is a cryptic issue, I have tried submitting an error report to Discord but they had disabled reporting for the desktop client for some reason :?
Vincent Burel
Site Admin
Posts: 1322
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2010 12:01 pm

Re: Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by Vincent Burel »

To let us take a serious look on your problem, you may post screenshot of
- Voicemeeter
- Voicemeeter System settings dialog box-
- VBCABLE Control panel of Voicemeeter VAIO used by Discord.

and also:
- Discord audio settings Dialog box.
- Windows playback device list (showing default playback device and default comunication device)
- Windows recording device list (showing default recording device and default comunication device)
RMCholewa
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri May 15, 2020 12:54 pm

Re: Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by RMCholewa »

Hi there,

First, I have to say that Voicemeter potato is a dream-come-true app. I always wanted more control over sound on my Windows PC. But I am facing some problems described here. Already tried lots of different configs and settings but the end result is the same: audio is ok at first but it starts to crack.

My primary use case is: using zoom for videoconferencing - then generating a stream from OBS - vertical config (and recording to a file) to Instagram with OBS#1 and generating another file with a second instance of OBS with a horizontal config (youtube).

The problems occur after some minutes. Was not able to determine the cause or a pattern (it might start as soon as after 1 minute) or after 10, 20 minutes.

It also occurs eventually without using OBS (listening to spotify, for example, after a while).

Restarting the audio engine in voicemeter solves the problem.

Here are the details:

Lenovo Y540 Notebook, Core i7-9750H with 32GB RAM, RTX2060
Windows 10 release 190318 port-br (language)
Voicemeter 3.0.1.3
Audio Cables A, B, C and D

VB-Audio reinstalled, with the following procedure:
Removed all of them;
Reboot;
Voicemeter Potato install as administrator, reboot;
cable A install as administrator, reboot;
cable B install as administrator, reboot;
cables C and D install as administrator, reboot.

Additional Troubleshooting Steps:
Disabled Dolby support inside Lenovo Vantage App;
Made sure Spatial Sound is disabled in the Realtek Speakers;
Disabled audio enhancement in the realtek speakers;
Configured ALL devices to 16 bit, 44.100Hz (at least all of those that have this config);
Configured ALL devices to 24 bit, 48000Hz (at least all of those that have this config);
Exclusive mode is configured for all devices inside the Playback / Recording Devices List (windows);
Tried using Float and Int (Virtual ASIO Type) in Voicemeter;
Tried Normal and Swift engines in Voicemeter;
Tried 1024 as buffering for WDM and ASIO;
Tried the WDM Input Exclusive Mode option in Voicemeter;
Tried ALL MME;

Voicemeter Config:
Hardware input 1: USB BM800 Cardioid Microphone;
Hardware Input 2: realtek notebook microphone;
Voicemeter VAIO: Windows default OUT
Voicemeter AUX: Zoom default OUT (speaker)
A1: Cable A (OBS #1 capture)
A2: Cable B (OBS #2 capture)
A3: Cable C Zoom capture (microphone)
A4: nothing
A5: PC speakers (realtek, cabled headphone monitor)

I also tried changing the virtual cables position (for example, using A1 for the realtek speakers and then A2=CableA, A3=CableB and so on).

Windows is configured to use the Voicemeter Input VAIO as the standard out and Cable-D as the standard Microphone. When needed, I assign A4 to Cable D.

Screenshots:

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image

So the question is: What Am I doing wrong?

Additional info: the patch panel / insert routes audio to Carla, where I have some VST plugins. The problem occurs with or without carla online or the patch disabled.

Thanks in advance!
RMCholewa
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri May 15, 2020 12:54 pm

Re: Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by RMCholewa »

Hi there,

I did the following changes:

zoom microphone points to cable D;
zoom speakers point to Voicemeter VAIO AUX Input;

OBS#1 (Instagram) and OBS#2 (Youtube) both getting audio from:

Cable D (voicemeter hardware input 1 assigned to BM800 USB microphone -> A5);
Voicemeter VAIO (standard Windows 10 out);
Voicemeter VAIO AUX (used for the zoom: this is where I get the audio from the other parties);

I was able to successfully run a 40 minute stream / recording without issues.

Will do more testing, but I am curious to know what cause the trouble to avoid it.

Thanks in advance!
voicemeter_main.JPG
voicemeter_main.JPG (218.57 KiB) Viewed 32618 times
voicemeter_settings.JPG
voicemeter_settings.JPG (117.88 KiB) Viewed 32618 times
RMCholewa
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri May 15, 2020 12:54 pm

Re: Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by RMCholewa »

Update from last config: although it seems ok for me (everything sounds ok), people on the other side of the zoom meeting listen to cracking sound. Restaring the audio engine solves the problem, but it is coming back after while (20, 30 seconds).
BOLL
Posts: 10
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Location: Sweden
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Re: Voicemeeter and Statics, Stuttering, Crackling sound

Post by BOLL »

Sorry for not responding sooner, I've tried to activate email notifications for this forum but I suspect SMTP settings might be faulty as I've never gotten any. Could be that I've missed some setting, or that some spam filter is catching them, but I've dug through the settings twice without success. Anyway.

RMCholew mentions Zoom experiences the same issue, and incidentally Zoom also employs SILK/Opus as a voice codec, it is a suspiciously common factor in all these cases, but might just be that most applications using microphone output are VoIP applications. I do record and stream with OBS and have never had the crackling happen with that application.

Here comes my screenshots, Vincent. I think that's about it... phew.
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