How to avoid delay or latency in headphones when tracking


New Member
Oct 13, 2012
Gear owned
DM 4800
Ciao Ciao a tutti,

I would appreciate some help and advice regarding an issue I had to face yesterday evening.   :eek:
For the first time, I was recording a lyric singer. But during the take, there was a kind of some « second voice » just a little bit delayed but enough to made troubles for her. :shock: She would like to make a CD in my studio and I am very happy since that's the first time.. :D
There is no effects neither in the Tascam 4800, nor in Logic 9.
I suspect that there is a routing issue somewhere either in the Tascam or into Logic but can’t identify it. Maybe the second voice comes from Logic..But I don't have any idea to fix this... :cry:
So, I thought you might understand and provide me with a short description on how to avoid this delay or latency. :idea:

Thanks for your kind attention,
If you are recording a track in Logic (or any DAW) and you have the track both record enabled and play enabled then the performer will hear themselves monitored through the console (which is virtually latency-free) and through the play-enabled track in the DAW (which will be much, much later). The resulting echo makes it impossible to perform in time. Just make sure that the tracks you are recording are NOT play enabled.

If the only thing the performer is hearing in their phones is the echo, and when you switch off Play for the track in question they hear nothing, then you're not monitoring through the console. In that case, make sure the track in Logic is not play enabled (only record enabled) and that the console channel for the microphone routed to both the output you have assigned to the record track AND to the stereo outs.
Hello Gravity Jim.....I just came across this post today, and I was intrigued by it.
I have been scratching my head for a long time trying to figure out a way to totally eliminate latency from my DAW and monitor only through the console....even when a track is in input......ready to record.

Your suggestion above got me thinking....and I had never thought of assigning a strip to the DAW and the Stereo Out at the same time.

I got excited, but then I started thinking.....If I assigned strip 1 on the console to channel 1 on the DAW (Logic) and also to the Stereo Outs.....once I started moving faders to work up a mix, I would also be changing levels to the DAW.....and that's not good.
If my input strip is setup to send to the DAW, and the level is properly set, I have to leave that fader alone. I can't touch why would I send it to the Stereo Outs as well.....??
What am I missing here......??

My normal setup is using page 2 as my input page.....input 1 sent to ch 1 on DAW, input 2 sent to ch 2 on DAW....and so on and so on......up to 24, faders all at zero.....adjust gain to suit......
Then switch to page 1 and monitor back from the DAW.....1 through 24......and all channels on this page set to Stereo Outs......but this way I am definitely monitoring through the DAW.
My latency is almost non existent, and no one has ever complained about it, but I know it is there, I can hear it. I would like to eliminate it completely, and the only way I can think of doing that is to monitor directly through the console.
I just haven't figured out a successful way of doing that yet.
I think you are on the right track there, but I guess I'm missing something.....??
If I assigned strip 1 on the console to channel 1 on the DAW (Logic) and also to the Stereo Outs.....once I started moving faders to work up a mix, I would also be changing levels to the DAW.....and that's not good.
Two solutions:
1. Route one input to 2 different channels: 1 for monitoring and 1 for recording.
2. Use INPUT BYPASS routing to route input directly to the DAW same time as it is routed to the channel
Hmm.....INPUT BYPASS.....never heard of it......just checking the manual now. Still not very clear.......but I will certainly give this a try.

I found this previous post from you....and I am assuming this is what you mean..?

My default setup is like this:
1. Use one layer (CH1-24) to monitor already recorded tracks from Cubase
2. Use one layer (CH25-48) for "zero-latency" monitoring of DM's M/L inputs (things being recorded)
3. Use last layer for F/X returns and my monitoring external preamps.
4. Send M/L inputs (and my external preamps) directly to Cubase using INPUT BYPASS routing.

Thank You Jarno.....very much appreciated.
I will keep you posted on how this works out.
It's not that complicated.

When you are tracking, whatever channel or channels you are using for mics, direct boxes, whatever, will be routed as analog inputs in the DM's routing matrix and switched physically to either line or mic. That channel will not be involved in a mix of sources coming back from the DAW. The channel routing is pretty flexible, but a channel can't be two things at once. ;)

I route the tracking channel(s) to the DAW for recording, and to the stereo outs so I can hear it alongside the other tracks playing back from the DAW. The result is zero latency. When mixing, my analog in channels are either muted, pulled all the way down, or changed to something other than analog inputs in the console's routing matrix.
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So to my mind.....if you are routing your tracking channel(s) to the DAW - AND to the Stereo Outs.....are you not creating the problem I am talking about. As soon as you move the tracking are messing up your levels to the DAW?
If the tracking channel is also going to the Stereo Outs....doesn't that mean you are listening to it.....??? And therefore it would probably need to be altered to fit properly in the mix.....while you are tracking...??
That's why it is better to use Direct Outs to go to DAW. The only thing affecting the signal then is analog gain, which is exactly what you want. Make sure your display or meter bridge shows pre-fader signal, ofcourse.

I let incoming signals go to DAW via Direct Out, use the fader channels to mix my control room sound, including DM effects, and use sends 1/2 from these channels to create a monitor mix for the performers. Returns from DAW go to different channels when dubbing, and when time for mixing comes I use a new setup, using all necessary or available channels.
No... You're only listening to WHEN YOU ARE TRACKING. Not when you are mixing. Get it? You don't need to use direct outs.
I wonder if Arjan means 'Input Bypass' ('DIRect from source to DAW)?
If so, I think you're both saying the same thing.

Sometimes this technique is confusing to those who don't understand it. It's not always referred to as Input Bypass in the DM menu. It's about assigning sources DIRectly to the interface Output Slot(s). This bypasses the the DM's channel modules and anything they control.

BigDee: go to: Routing/Tab3 (Output SLOT). Choose what you want to send on the right part of the screen, choose the slot with the 3rd Pod - they're listed in banks of 8. So - if you want Slot #16, choose "9-16" array. Then, on the left side of screen are the output slots. If you want to send Input #3 (M/L#3) to Slot 16, choose: M/L on the right, dial in M/L#3 in Slot #16.

To monitor, pick any available fader - you can even use the 33-40 layer (although they lack compression/EQ). Route M/L#3 to the chosen fader model - say 36. Mute the playback channel, and monitor your input using DM fader 36 for volume control. That fader has NO bearing on the recorded signal; it's just for the performer. Everything monitored during tracking will be in exact, dead sync to all the other recorded inputs because they all arrive at the DM's stereo buss simultaneously.

Hope this helps.

I wonder if Arjan means 'Input Bypass' ('DIRect from source to DAW)?
That is what I meant. Wasn't sure who Jim was referring to anyway - and I don't react to "Get it?" remarks anyway. Oh, guess I just did.. :ugeek:
That is what I meant.
But that's not what you said. Be careful out there:
DIRECT OUT and INPUT BYPASS are completely different things in DM nomenclature. Mixing (pun intended) these terms leads to confusions very easily ... as we've already seen.
Hey all the head is spinning at the moment.
I need to keep reading these posts over and see if I can get something to sink in.
Seems like a multitude of options.....not to mention the confusion in terminology.

I have to think about this.
thanx folks.....really love the tips/advice.
I can't believe that I just wrote this big long thing and my computer just BSODed on a page file issue. OK, I'll try to remember what all I wrote. More to come.....damit!
Hi Big Dee...
Don't sweat it. We all have had to go through quite a learning curve with these DM's. But I might be able to help you a bit. Once you get the routing thing down on these DMs, you'll be hooked!

If you are coming from an analog console, where you routed everything to busses or maybe just a two track stereo buss, you would be right. Everything you do on the input tracking channel's fader gets sent to the subsequent buss and then out to your DAW. But, the DMs are much more flexible than that and they include something called "Input Bypass". Think of input bypass as a way to split the incoming signal from an instrument input, or in your case, the singer's mic signal. When you use input bypass, the signal splits right after the preamp's gain knob. One version of the signal, if routed correctly, goes directly to your DAW, usually over a fireWire channel, UNaffected by anything you do on the DM, such as fader movements. The other signal then would be routed to your DM's input channel fader and then out of the DM's stereo buss, out to your monitors/headphones. I probably should state here that this is only one version of routing philosophy, and is by no means the only or perfect way to do it. But, I will say that it is definitely a good place to start, especially if you are doing muti-track recordings and are new to the DMs.

Now, as to your issues of latency delay...most of the people here, and rightly so, see you making a common mistake in your routing, causing issues that can be easily be fixed. Using your situation specifically, when you were recording that singer, you were hearing two different versions of their voice, with a delay between the two. What you were probably hearing was the singer's mic input, as it was going through the DM's stereo Buss, and the signer's mic as it was going into the actual DAW track you were recording into, then out of the DAW's stereo buss, then back into the DM on another pair of channels, then out through the DM's stereo Buss. What is important here is that you MUTE the output of any DAW track you are recording into, so that the currently recorded signal does NOT go out through the DAW's buss and gets mixed in with the signal coming into the DM from the mic input.

You might be thinking...well, if I can't hear the voice as it's being recorded from my DAW, the how could it be synced with the music coming out of the DAW. This issue is typically taken care of with Delay Compensation, a feature that is built into most DAWs.

So, with that in mind, you may be best served by using the DM as a completely delay free "monitoring" board when tracking/recording. By using "input bypass" in your DM's routing, send one signal of the mic directly to the DAW track you want to record into and the other signal can go into the input of an assigned input channel on the DM, and then out through the stereo buss for monitoring. Allow the previously recorded music from your DAW to play through whatever two DM channels you have assigned to your board that handle your DAW's stereo buss. Move the faders as you need to, but make sure the signal coming out of the actual DAW track is muted at the DAW track. The end result will be no latency delays and a perfectly synced recording in your DAW.

If you need a step by step for this, let me know.
got it this time...

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