Playback Skipping


I have been through most of the help topics already and have not found a solution to my problem just yet.  I have Sibelius 3, a laptop with 756 RAM, VD2 with Kontact player, and an Oxygen 8.  I had much success with VD1 and am now working with VD2 on my new computer. 

My issue is that my playback skips.  It's not ";choppy"; or ";scratchy"; as I have seen on other threads.  The sounds are of good quality from VD2 in the playback and when it doesn't skip, the rhythms are even.  However, the bar I start the playback on will skip, and then every few bars it will skip (it will hold for a second, and then skip back in).  I also notice this when the playback jumps from line to line, or page to page. 

I am very concerned for my recording purposes and would greatly appreciate any suggestions.


Slightly different symptom, but it sounds like it's just a general performance problem with your computer.  Think of it like this- if you hear scratchy playback and pops, you are probably close to being able to play it back fine.  If it skips like you said, it's probably a more severe performance problem.

That's really not a lot of RAM if you are trying to load an entire ensemble, or all 8 voices in the VDL2 player.  Have you tried downloading the Direct from Disc (DFD) file from the updates page?  You can lower the overall quality of the samples to increase playback performance.  What kind of CPU does that laptop have?  Try playing back just one instrument at a time and see if it plays OK, then add them back in one by one- if you are able to hear fewer tracks fine, then it's definitely performance related.  You may have to record your music in smaller chunks (only battery, then only pit, etc.) and mix them back together in another program.
Thanks for the response. 

First off, I am using a pentium 1.7 in Windows XP.  For now I am only loading four banks, all lite (snare, tenor, bass, cymbals).  I have played one line at a time, and although the skipping is better, it still skips every time it switches lines and pages. 

I downloaded the DFD.  How will that help me?
Another thing to check out while troubleshooting is CPU useage. There's a CPU meter in the VDL2 player window. While playing back, keep an eye on this CPU meter, if it's maxing out (100%) when you hear the skips, there's definitely a performance issue.

Try playing back without Sibelius scrolling. Sometimes the memory useage required to redraw the screen can take away from audio playback in less powerful systems.

You may also definitely find the ";XP audio tuning tips"; very helpful at:

DFD stands for ";direct from disc";. It will allow you to load less sample to RAM, but will then have to stream from your hard drive. This is a good solution for limited RAM, however can also be problematic in terms of CPU useage and problems with slower hard drives (as in laptops). It's worth installing and activating. You can easily DE-activate it within VDL2 by clicking the ";options"; button, and making sure the ";active"; button (under DFD options) is not highlighted.

There's some helpful insight into DFD, CPU, RAM topics at this thread that would be worth reading for you to better understand the technology involved here:
wow, a 1.7 GHz Pentium should be able to play 4 battery instruments no problem.  In addition to what Jim said, you might have other problems like needing to degragment the hard drive, remove a virus, clean up spyware, hard drive is almost full, etc. 
Well guys, I appreciate your help.  As I was going down Jim's list of things to try, the playback without scrolling worked with a charm.  CPU usage was fine and my system seems to be powerful enough.  In this case it was just was skipping while scrolling. 

Thanks again
That's great! Glad you're seeing better results. When you get a chance to look through those ";tune up tips"; from, there are some great things there that help ";trim the fat"; on some of XP's quirks.

May your music flow freely now...:)
how does one turn off the srolling in sib
In [b]Playback Options[/b] (in Sibelius 3), de-select the checkbox that says ";follow score during playback.";
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