Tutorials » Spitfire Audio » Troubleshooting

In this blog I'll be looking at simple things to try when experiencing problems in Kontakt and Spitfire products.

Problems, problems, problems

Here are some of the more common problems you may run into when using Kontakt instruments, a description of what causes them for those interested and tips and workarounds to get things working as smoothly as possibe. These are tailored specifically towards Spitfire Audio instruments but some tips may apply to other libraries.

A few of the more obvious things to try first

There are several things you can try that may solve the issue without ever having to mess about with settings, change things on your machine or contact support. I know these seem rather obvious, but you wouldn't believe how many times these simple things can solve the biggest of problems.

Press the Kontakt ! Restart button

Kontakt has a handy button that resets its scripting, logic and audio systems. You'll find it up in the toolbar, just to the left of the Cpu/Disk indicators. If you're experiencing problems, try to give this button a click  and wait a few seconds. Sometimes it's just enough to jog that stuck note, reset those round robins or find that lost release sample.

Restart Kontakt (and perhaps your VST Host, DAW or computer)

There are times when something more serious goes wrong with Kontakt. It's doing a lot of heavy lifting and pushing a lot of data through your system. Sometimes a complete restart just seems to fix things in general, either from freeing up a bit or RAM, restarting an external process that's proving CPU/Disk hungry, etc.

Make sure you've installed all your software updates

If you're experiencing issues with multiple products it's worth checking you're running the latest version of Kontakt. You can find out if there are any updates in Native Instrument's Service Center (installed alongside Kontakt). Also check that you've got the very latest updates to your sample libraries. There are quite a few times when Spitfire have released important hotfixes that fix critical problems, so it's always worth checking the websites or downloader software to see if one's available.

Kontakt 5.3 causes Heap crashes on OS X Mavericks

If you're a Mac user you may have experiencing a crash with the error message “Heap corruption detected, free list canary is damaged"  using Kontakt 5.3. Native Instruments have fixed this problem in later updates. You can update your Kontakt to this latest version using the Native Instruments Native Access software.

A Spitfire articulation (or instrument) doesn't seem to make a sound

Articulations can be 'purged' from memory to save resources ( ). When purged, an articulation or instrument won't make a sound. Double check the articulation you're trying to play isn't purged. If it is, give the little purge icon a click so that it lights up. Also check you're not trying to play a 'rest' articulation (). The rest icon means that this articulation is not available in the loaded patch. Check that the instrument can support this articulation and have a peek through other patches included in the library.

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