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Abeem Live Technologies has updated Rack Performer to version 0.98-beta. This major release concentrates on synchronization and time keeping in general, with some very interesting features for those working with external musical gear (drum machines and sequencers) and for electronic musicians playing in a band.

New features:

  • Classic full-slave synchronization mode, with sample-accurate start/stop, rate and phase locking.
  • Live synch mode, allow to join and synch to any running master on the fly, while retaining both rate and phase locking.
  • Master clock transport control can be received, when "transport input" is enabled, with selectable protocol and source.
  • 5 different synchronization schemes to offer a tradeoff between tracking accuracy and wow/flutter effect.
  • Clock input control using MIDI Timecode protocol (MTC).
  • Clock input control using MIDI Clock protocol.
  • Transport control input using standard MIDI protocol (Start / Stop / Continue / SongPositionPtr).
  • Transport input control using MIDI Machine Control protocol (Play / Stop / Locate / Reset).
  • Transport input control using MIDI Show Control protocol (Start / Stop / Set / Zero).
  • Transport input control using first MIDI note received (start only).
  • Transport input control using space key on local keyboard (Ctrl+space to restart).
  • Metronome with LED display GUI (useful for drummers) bar/beat/sub enable and volume controls.
  • Metronome internal MIDI mode (sends notes to any internal instrument to use as a metronome).
  • Module execution order can now be altered using the new Patch execution order dialog.
  • Master clock location can be displayed in timecode format on transport bar.
  • Tempo can be displayed in quarter notes per minute (QNPM), beats per minute (BPM) or compound beats per minute (CBPM).

Minor modifications:

  • Added preliminary Windows 8 support.
  • Skew up and down controls in transport bar now have an associated global control port (rate bias, mappable).
  • Tempo Tap control in transport bar is now a global control port (mappable).
  • Synchro offset global control port and transport bar control (used to compensate latencies during sync).
  • Sync-to-Push control in transport bar is now a global control port (mappable, increased precision).
  • Added new hidden synchro option to reset internal master clock tempo and rate bias to nominal values on synchro exit.
  • Added new hidden VST compatibility option to emulate clock rate skew with tempo change events.
  • Increased maximum usable memory to 3GB on 32 bit systems (nominal, with 4GT enabled) and 4GB on 64 bit systems.
  • Improved Pentium TSC calibration (again).
  • Improved tick counter calibration and chipset detection.
  • Improved high performance counter calibration and chipset detection.
  • Improved CPU features detection.
  • Added "locate" function to master clock in transport bar (accepts any time display mode).
  • More consistent modal dialogs keyboard handling (faster workflow).
  • Streamlined MIDI configuration cinematic (no need to manually enable after adding devices, and other details).
  • MIDI keyboard lock is now restored after loading document.
  • VST plugins can now be reset to their initial state like any other module.
  • Added new hidden option to increase protection against faulty plugins.
  • Added new hidden options to enable MMCSS per thread and to fine tune priority boosts.
  • Added new hidden options to select MMCSS profiles per thread.
  • Improved GUI refreshing efficiency (use less resources).
  • New "optimal" GUI refresh mode (automatically select the most appropriate refresh rate).
  • Added new option to use aggressive scheduler timings (improve timing precision at the expense of CPU power, when off: defaults back to 1ms).
  • Added new hidden option to reduce Aero desktop interferences (lower Aero thread priority, default: on).
  • Custom MMCSS profiles are added to the registry by the installer.
  • When "standard MIDI control" is selected for transport in, MIDI time-sig changes (sysex) are supported (but quantified).
  • In samples time display mode, locating transport shifts by an amount equal to the audio output latency.
  • Holding a modifier key (ctrl or shift) when locating transport allows to use smaller increments.
  • In musical time display mode, locating transport stays in sync (no clock discontinuity).
  • Transport "FF" and "RW" effect depends on selected time display mode (smart locate).
  • VST plugins now properly receive timecode information.
  • Default timecode format for new documents can be set from "live" menu.
  • Timecode format for the current document can be set from "live" menu.
  • Timecode start offset can be set from the "Timecode format" sub menu.
  • Tempo tap now properly takes compound beat (dotted) time signatures into account.
  • VST path is now guessed by automatic configuration.
  • Added a new hidden compatibility option to enable UAC virtualization (can fix some legacy VST plugins).
  • New performance profile selection dialog during first run.
  • Most advanced options are now auto-configured during first run.
  • Simplified VST configuration (no longer requires two distinct paths, second is now an extra optional path).
  • Improved cached VST scan speed (removed redundant checks).
  • Added an extra category to list controller modules (RBC/automation/RMC/etc).
  • Improved status dumps quality to ease user support.
  • No longer selecting Microsoft GW Synth during auto-configuration.
  • No longer displaying warnings when powering on with disconnected MIDI devices.
  • Improved mouse-centric zoom in patcher (smoother).
  • No longer displaying VST preset mode selection when creating module (default value can be set in config).
  • Pressing Ctrl or Shift when creating a VST module displays preset mode selection (old behaviour).

Bug fixes:

  • A lot of different looking and severe crashes could happen when configuring running wave engines with MIDI enabled (especially under WinXP).
  • Master input module control ports were incorrectly latency compensated (PDC).
  • An unfortunate regression made all Bypass ports (Cut-ports) globally ineffective.
  • Removing module MIDI routings (omni-mode) did not work.
  • Embedded GUI wrappers (racked and frame) could display incorrectly in multiple monitor setups.
  • Percent inc/dec keyboard mappings now properly works for controls with small range.
  • Fixed some edge cases around keyboard mapper calibration cinematic.
  • Under some circumstances screen switchers could revert to screen 1 when powering on.
  • Corrected an issue that could lead to the master inputs module failing (and possibly other modules).
  • Transport "SyncToPush", "FF" and "RW" now have no effect when tempo is near zero using musical time display mode.
  • Corrected a bug where modules with processing latency had a wrong latency compensation on their control events.
  • PDC induced latencies are now properly included when VST plugins request precise latencies.
  • Resuming from OS sleep mode could leave openGL patcher in a corrupted state.
  • Corrected a timing related crash happening sometimes when closing documents with VST modules.
  • ASIO engines didn't run with some particular drivers (JACK-Router, possibly others).
  • With VST SA-emulation option on, recalling presets made plugin crash (both chunks preset mode).
  • Moving objects and resizing zones in patcher could be glitchy sometimes, now it's smooth again.
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