Free Linux Studio: How to Use LinuxDSP Effects with Ardour

Alongside our Renoise + Indamixx netbook-optimized production competition, I’m kicking off this week a series of CDM and guest tutorials on working with Linux audio tools, Renoise, and more. First up, here’s a basic look at how to route the free-as-in-beer linuxDSP effects toolkit into the powerful, modern, open-source DAW Ardour. Correction: I implied that linuxDSP had an open source license, which is not correct. It should be considered “freeware” but not free software. Ardour, of course, is fully open source, and this is as much a tutorial on how to use JACK to route effects as it is linuxDSP …

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Linux Music Workflow: Switching from Mac OS X to Ubuntu with Kim Cascone

Here’s a switcher story of a different color: from the Mac, to Linux. It’s one thing to talk about operating systems and free software in theory, or to hear from died-in-the-wool advocates of their platform of choice. In this case, we turn to Kim Cascone, an experienced and gifted musician and composer with an impressive resume of releases and a rich sens of sound. This isn’t someone advocating any platform over another: it’s an on-the-ground, in-the-trenches, real-world example of how Kim made this set of tools work in his music, in the studio and on tour. A particular thanks, as …

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Renoise 2.1, Now with Mac-PC ReWire, Plus JACK on Linux, Live Performance Tools

Renoise has already earned a passionate following among lovers of trackers. The once-forgotten alternative to conventional sequencers, these music editors were beloved for their quick workflow and vertical, atomic approach to assembling beats and patterns. But Renoise is increasingly poised to appeal to other kinds of music makers, too, not just tracker purists. 2.1 you can sum up pretty easily: now you can integrate Renoise with other stuff easily. There’s ReWire support (appropriately enough for a tool beginning with “Re” in the title). And if you’re on Linux, you can pipe control and audio through the ultra-elegant, ultra-powerful JACK. (If …

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Wormhole2: Tool Routes Audio Over Networks, Now Open Source

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 …

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Leopard: Incompatibilities with JACK, Soundflower; Finder Audio Previews

Generally, Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard has been working pretty well for most users, though we continue to hear a number of complaints about compatibility with M-Audio hardware. There are some annoyances, though, including one glitch as far as routing audio between apps. Updated: the good news is, this is fixable. In the “bad” category, Paul Davis, the creator of JACK and Ardour, writes: Leopard has stopped JACK and other inter-application audio routers from being used as the default audio device. Apple is now distributing an SDK that is aimed at “aiding” developers in writing user-space CoreAudio “drivers” such as …

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Windows Does Jack: Multi-App Audio on Mac, Linux, and Now PC

There’s something to be said for making connections in hardware studios: if you’ve got the cables, you can make it happen. In the world of the computer, it’s another story. The vision of Jack is to make routing audio between software as flexible. As the creators put it: Have you ever wanted to take the audio output of one piece of software and send it to another? How about taking the output of that same program and send it to two others, then record the result in the first program? If so, JACK may be what you’ve been looking for. …

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Aldrin: Powerful, Modular Sequencer-Tracker for Linux/Windows, a la Buzz

There are two basic ways to approach computer music making: work with a system that’s already built for you (think traditional sequencers), or build your own, modular, unique way of working. Both approaches can be valid, but for a small but dedicated band of hard-core computer musicians, only the latter will do. The Buzz project for Windows attempted to merge modular capabilities with a tracker-style sequencer. (Buzzmachines.com isn’t working for me at the moment; see also the Buzz Wikipedia entry.) There’s a new hope, however. Linux-native but build-able on Windows, free, and intensely powerful, early versions of the new Aldrin …

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Mactel Watch: JACK for OS X now Universal; Free Inter-App Audio on Intel (and other) Macs

Want to share audio between applications easily on an Intel Mac? Now you can. JACK OS X, the superb open-source solution for routing audio between applications and computers on Mac OS X, is now a Universal binary for Intel/PowerPC Macs with today’s release of version 0.73. That means if you’re running an Intel Mac, you can now easily route audio between your Intel-native copies of software like Ableton Live (released last week) and Apple Logic Pro (shipped last month). Updated: The creator of JACK writes us to note that inter-app MIDI is bound for an upcoming release. (See comments.)

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