Apr. 18th, 2012

tchk: Squirrel Badge (Default)
While I am quite happy with the sound of Reason (the software synthesizer), I have serious issues with their custom protocol for wiring the synth into your sequencer, called ReWire.

Frankly, it has never worked properly on any of my systems, and why they cannot make a version of Reason that omits the sequencer features and acts just like any DirectX or VST plugin, is completely beyond my understanding - every other vendor seems capable of that.

Does anyone really work with the fiddly sequencer built into Reason? Everyone I know uses it as a software synth. But I digress.

On my current PC, when the ReWire link goes down it messes my sound subsystem up in a way that needs a reboot for sound to come back. This is a major annoyance if you are trying to write music. Not only do I need to wait for the system to reboot, after that I need to wait for it to open my project files again and load several GB of samples. A forced pause of about 10 minutes about once every hour...

Since my first attempt to fix this was a reinstall of some of my audio software, and I was fiddling around with things anyway, I decided to try another change that I had been planning for a long time: 64 bit. It has been a while that a 64 bit version of Sonar has been available, and I have run into memory limitations one too many times.

The upgrade worked great, uninstall the old 32 bit version, install the new 64 bit version, copy the DLLs for my software synths and plugins over, and voila, all my synths were back. The Vienna Symphonic Library even comes with a 64 bit version of the plugin, so now I can load as many instruments as will fit into my 16 GB memory!

All my other plugins still run as well. Thank you, Sonar, for that built in 32 bit bridge.

Umm ... except Reason, because ReWire doesn't do 64 bit.

A bit of searching on the net revealed that you can download a free-for-personal-use MIDI loopback driver at nerds.de. That solved my problem, because now I can just run Reason standalone, send MIDI from Sonar (64 bit) to this port, and use it as an input to Reason (32 bit).

No more ReWire!!! Ever again!!!

And a stable system.

The only disadvantage is that now I have to use external equipment for effects like reverb while I'm composing. Because, you guessed it, Reason doesn't support regular plugins so it will not allow me to use my standard reverb plugin either...

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tchk

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