If I run cubase, I can't run spotify or any other sound program at the same time. does this have to do with my soundcard and is my soundcard substandard for this?

If I exit cubase then I can use spotify and other soundprograms normally.


  • 4
    What audio driver are you using with Cubase? Most DAWs work in exclusive mode. You can try using shared mode with WASAPI, though low-latency performance may vary. Commented Jul 9, 2013 at 12:22

6 Answers 6


Go to Devices/Device Setup then under VST Audio System on the right side of the window Tick the option underneath ASIO Driver that says release driver when app is in background... ;-p that worked for me.


This is by design - when running a full featured DAW, the assumption is that it will be controlling all sound, otherwise the project you are working on may not end up as you expect.

  • It's worth noting that Ableton, Logic, and Protools can all run outside audio at the same time, even with the DAW focused, SO LONG as the separate audio is running through a different output device. Cubase is the only one I've found that won't allow this even with multiple devices. (Although, I wasn't mixing in 2013, so this info is for >2016). This should not affect your project at all, as the audio is not overlapping Commented Sep 11, 2020 at 4:31

There is also another option (I am using Cubase LE AI 10).

Go to Studio -> Studio Setup. Then in the devices list choose the driver you are using (On my computer it is Generic Low Latency ASIO Driver) (1). Next click in the right panel on Control Panel button (2).

Studio Setup

In the new window UNCHECK option "Allow ASIO host application to take exclusive control of selected port configuration".

Driver control panel

This should do the work - now Cubase will allow to share audio port with e.g. music from web browser.


Having the same problem but I solved it on my own:

Verify that the cubase project is the same bit rate and sample rate as your other audio playing program (Mine had to be set to 24bit 48000Hz). Also follow the other answers about releasing the driver in background.

  1. go to speaker icon and right click. and sounds option.
  2. on sound properties dialog box click properties.
  3. on speaker properties , go to advanced tab and click restore default and apply it. This should solve your problem.
    • Jagan Rai.

Usually, mixing the audio stream of two applications involves the Microsoft mixer which adds latency, too much if you want to play with a VST.

This is why some DAW propose WASAPI with 2 modes (exclusive or not), and ASIO is typically exclusive.

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