SYSTEM SETTINGS

System Settings - Audio

To open the Audio Settings choose 'Options > Audio settings' from the main menu or press the F10 function key on your keyboard. The Audio Settings page contains options and settings for your soundcard. The settings chosen here can have a big impact on CPU load, so it is worth taking the time to learn what options are available. Note that some options change depending on whether an ASIO or Direct Sound driver is selected in the Output selector. If this is your first time to adjust the Audio Settings you may like to view the audio setup pages from the 'Getting Started' section.

Above left shows the Audio Options with the ASIO4ALL 'ASIO' driver selected (your card may have native ASIO drivers, if so use them), above right the less efficient 'Primary Sound Driver', standard Windows driver.

A word about Soundcards & Soundcard Drivers

Soundcard: The term 'soundcard' is used rather loosely, you may have a soundcard in your PC, a chip on your motherboard or it may be an external device connected by USB/FireWire/Bluetooth. The soundcard is any device that makes the sound you hear from your PC speakers. Soundcard Driver: The soundcard driver is the software interface between the Windows operating system and the soundcard hardware. The driver tells Windows, and so FL Studio, what inputs/outputs the soundcard has and what sample rates it can support. Primary Sound Driver drivers place a layer of 'middle-man' software handling communications between the audio application (FL Studio for example) and the soundcard hardware while ASIO drivers allow direct communication between the audio application and the soundcard. This is why ASIO drivers are faster and more efficient than Primary Sound Driver drivers.

NOTE: The default FL Studio installation selects the Windows Primary Sound Driver (DirectSound) to ensure maximum compatibility. Frankly the 'Primary Sound Driver' sucks the life from your CPU, so switch to your soundcards native ASIO driver, if that does not exist then try ASIO4ALL.

Options

Input / Output

ASIO Properties

Visible only when using ASIO driver.

If your soundcard does not natively support ASIO, the FL Studio install includes a 3rd party driver ASIO4ALL. NOTE: that ASIO4ALL is a generic ASIO driver that works with most soundcards, your experience may be different. ASIO4ALL allows you to select inputs and outputs from different soundcards/audio-devices. The help section on ASIO4ALL advanced settings covers the options.

Primary Sound Driver Properties

Visible only when using Standard drivers (Primary Sound, WDM, Primary, etc).

Audio Mixing Thread

Plugin output

Visible only when using FL Studio with the VSTi/DXi connection plugin or as a ReWire client.

Playback tracking

Can help smooth jittery or incorrect Playlist/Piano roll/Event Editor playback position indicators.

NOTE: These options replace the 'Use Mixer as Playback Position' switch used in previous FL Studio versions.

Mixer

CPU

These options are intended to reduce CPU load and maximize FL Studio performance on your PC.

NOTES:

  1. For a plugin to be multithreaded there are 3 places where the option must be selected, here, the Wrapper menu 'Allow threaded processing and Wrapper Additional Settings Menu 'Processing > Allow threaded processing'. All three are selected by default.
  2. Some of these options may cause problems with 3rd party plugins. What plugins? It all depends on how closely they conform to the VST design standard, don't look at us, we are not the 'VST police'. What sort of 'problems'? We are not prophets either, but possibly plugin-crashes, audio glitches, out-of-sync playback or CPU spikes. See plugins behaving badly.