Wormhole2 is a powerful, cross-platform (Windows + Mac) VST plug-in capable of transmitting audio between computers over networks. It allows effects chain routing between networked computers, boasts low-latency performance on LANs, and even works over WiFi or Firewire. But Wormhole2′s niche audience kept it from catching on more widely, and we hadn’t heard much from it lately, leaving some users worried Wormhole had fallen into a black hole.

plasq, the wonderful people who brought us Skitch and Comic Life, have been giving their audio tools new lives rather than orphaning them. We’ve already seen plasq’s live performance-savvy instrument and effects host Rax show up as an Audiofile Engineering product, and AE in turn recently promised in comments that great things were coming for Rax.

Now, we have some great news for Wormhole2: it’s gone open source:

Wormhole2 @ Google Code

Product Page and Features (still up at press time)

Discussion at plasq.com Forum

End users can just download AU (Mac) and VST (Windows) binaries, plus a PDF manual. It’s even a Universal Binary for Intel Macs.

Developers: because VST isn’t an open-source format, you have to download Steinberg’s VST SDK to use it, but plasq will actually go the trouble of sending you the files once you agree to Steinberg’s license agreement. (AU isn’t either, but Apple ships all the developer tools you need with the OS.)

I’m really hopeful someone will build something cool with this. You’ll need something else to route MIDI (though the Mac does that over networks out of the box, cough, Windows). But there are powerful audio-over-network options here which would be hard to work out on your own. It’s unclear how useful Wormhole2 will be to the existing, open source JACK audio project, which is also capable of routing audio between apps and (via netjack) networked computers. JACK uses a client/server model as opposed to Wormhole’s plug-in approach. But for end users, having both tools available free is a very good thing, and the price tag is an extra incentive to be brave and see if these tools can help power up your rig.

  • Adrian Anders

    Okay, so you code monkeys out there here's your new task: Port Wormhole to Linux VST for use with EnergyXT2!

  • Matt C.

    I like this GUI and paradigm much better than Jack's for this sort of thing. Also, the netjack component was removed from Jack OS X so Wormhole2 is the only thing I know for the Mac that allows streaming audio from one host to another over a network connection. REAPER has ReaStream in both the OS X and Windows XP versions but I haven't tested this, yet, and I think the OS X version is currently confined to working within REAPER, only, at this time.

  • MrBook

    Has anyone tried this with MAC as a host and a virtual machine VMWare or Parallels running the Windows Plugins? It would be interesting to see how is the latency with such a setup.

  • Dave Robillard

    It would be /much/ more useful on Linux to have as a Jack client rather than a VST which benefits only 1 or 2 apps.

  • johan

    there is at least one more way to stream audio

    over network in OSx. if you have installed the Developer

    Tools, you will have AU Lab.app that gives you,

    access to the Netsend and Netreceive AudioUnits, if you

    combine that with JackOSx… NetJack!

  • Killa Kable

    Tonight I will attempt to stream Pro-tools 7.4 track audio from OSX Tiger on a MacPro (Intel Quad-Core / 4GB RAM)into another host (maybe another instance of Pro-Tools or Reaper)on a virtual Windows XP through Parallels using this Wormhole VST and have it sent back. I am trying to gain access to all those wonderful plugins only available on PC. Or maybe it would be less process intensive if I just get another PC and have THAT connected through LAN…I dunno will try both I guess…Will let you all know the outcome…Any feedback or tips on this would be great…Holla @ ME!!

    -KABLE

    kableny@aol.com

  • JohnnyMarks

    He Kable, any luck?