XO Wave is a basic multi-track audio tool with multi-channel recording and mixing, video support, plug-in support (in the Pro version) and built in DSP, double-precision math, and non-destructive editing. It looks like it could be a strong choice for basic multichannel tasks. And it has some less-common features, like automatic softening to remove clicks/pops at edit points, and versioning so you can go back to earlier versions of files. A very capable version is available free, and a “Pro” version is just US$95 (though that admittedly puts it in slightly more competitive waters).

Interestingly, this is also one of the rare cases of a Java-based audio app. (The app is Java-based, at least; the developer notes that audio processing is not done in Java.) The 1.0 final release is compatible with Mac OS X Leopard, with two caveats: one, 10.5’s new security privileges cause it to gripe the first time you run it about security (as it would with any app), and two, dock/switcher icons appear twice. (Java support on 10.5 has a couple of hiccups; at least they’re non-critical annoyances; the icon issue is apparently a Leopard problem, not Java per se.)

1.0 has also arrived on Linux; in that version the software is free (though closed-source, despite the name, with full JACK support). (Hey, how about a JACK-aware Mac version, too?)

XO Wave downloads; comparison of Linux, free, and Pro versions

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  • dan s.

    Versioning was interesting. I haven't heard of it in an audio context before. Does there exist something equivalent of (programming tools) csv or subversion specially for audio?

  • raindog

    We were talking about something like that on the Linux Audio Users list recently. What this program seems to do is sort of akin to saving the project file under a new name periodically in Audacity, another free non-destructive audio app similar in concept to this one, and this functionality could probably be added pretty easily to Audacity.

    Making a real CVS/SVN style audio repository might be more complicated.