Sudden increase in latency using external sound card



I am working with Live 9 Standard on a MacBook Pro 13 (2009).

Soundcard: MOTU Audio Express (USB and FW, tried both).

When I first launch the session, latency is as expected (unnoticeable with 64 samples). 

At some point in the session (live performance, so no plug-ins added/removed), latency increases suddenly and remains at a high level until I either restart Live or set the output device to "No device" then back to the soundcard.

Latency increase only concerns monitored audio tracks! VST instruments keep their low delay.

Could this be due to the soundcard itself?


All I found about this is an unanswered topic on this dating from 2007 on Live 6...


Thanks for your support





boulfad 3 years ago | 0 comments

4 answers

  • [daw] Ableton staff
    202 answers
    236 votes received
    1 vote


    Are you using OS X Mavericks by chance? There seems to be a confirmed issue with some Motu drivers on Mavericks, and for more information please get in touch with Motu support staff :

    Hope this helps, 


    3 years ago | 0 comments
  • gwendallv
    1 answer
    1 vote received
    1 vote


    I'm having the exact same same issue with my Roland Quad-Capture (UA-55)... The audio latency suddenly because very high (maybe 500ms or more), which make my live instruments unusable.
    On OS X El Capitan, Macbook Pro retina 13 mid-2014, all software (including quad-capture driver and firmware) up-to-date.

    I sometimes work with RME or Motu hardware (but not during long live session like I do with my quad-capture), and I never encountered the bug with these.

    Should I contact the Roland tech support as well, or is it a known bug ?

    Thank you,


    2 years ago | 0 comments
  • [daw] Ableton staff
    202 answers
    236 votes received
    1 vote

    Hi Gwendallv, 

    It is generally always good to bring this up with the manufacturer of the audio interface, as they are responsible for the driver, which is usually the root cause for such issues. 

    Of course you can also send us a Status Report from Live ( help -> get support in Live ), maybe we can spot something unusual. 

    You can reach out to our support here:



    2 years ago | 0 comments
  • finstrel
    2 answers
    3 votes received
    1 vote

    I had the same problem recording a 3-minute track. In the beginning there is no latency at all. After 3 or 4 takes (12 minutes) the latency start to be noticiable, then after 30 minutes it was almost 1 second.

    I am using a Mac Mini with 8 GB and El Captain and a Focusrite Saffire Pro 14 connected via Firewire. I am using all 4 input channels from Saffire and each one is being recorded in a different Ableton track.

    Can't figure out why latency is increasing, and I have a similar workaround. When you notice latency is beign noticiable, do to Ableton Live preferences ans set the sample rate to a different one, than go back to previous one. And boom. Latency disappears. Don't know why. Does it "clean" the buffer? Is it a bug in Ableton? Don't know. But it works.

    Maybe in a live performance I could do this between the songs. But I don't know if it happens when I'm not recording a track. I mean, if I just capturing the audio without record the track.

    1 year ago | 0 comments

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