Ardour 3.5.308 released

January 23rd, 2014

Continuing on with our cycle of monthly releases, 3.5.308 contains a pile of bug fixes and several very useful new features. Almost entirely the single-handed work of Robin Gareus, you will find significant changes with panning, auditioning and the very striking addition of explicitly-displayed signal router in the mixer strips.

Additions & Changes

  • add visualization of signal flow within tracks and busses
  • Various improvements to panning
    • add stereo-balance panner
    • right click on panner to select a different (compatible) paner
    • major overhaul to VBAP panner so that it works
    • panner GUI tweaks
    • Sends now have their own panner
    • Send panner may be (un)linked with the main panner via the context menu of the send. If linked, the send's panning follows the main panner.
  • Various improvements to import and auditioning
    • Add MIDI auditioning (using Ardour's builtin "reasonableSynth")
    • Consider all tracks in a MIDI (SMF) file
    • allow auditioning via the monitor section to work (and make it the default when using a monitor section)
    • add a seek/locate slider to the import auditioner
    • auditioning now uses sample rate conversion when necessary, so that auditioned files are always played back at the correct pitch/speed

Fixes and Improvements

  • do not lock audio to video when extracting only the audio from a video file
  • re-enable export file tagging and fix export format dialog inconsistency
  • fix audio cross-talk between tracks that occured when using 1in/2out tracks.
  • fix the "replicate missing channels from regions" option
  • fix text "bleeding" in various buttons
  • provide some level of compatibility with aubio 0.4. Ardour should still be built using aubio 3.2.
  • improve rendering of faders
  • add M-Audio 2496 to the list of devices recognized to have a "control app"
  • fix behaviour of plugin parameter sliders for ranges [0..]
  • new MIDNAM files for Moog MF-104M and MF-108M
  • add support for MIDNAM controller labels
  • document MIDNAM controller values for Moog Minitaur
  • fix display isues with editor mixer strip
  • fix 32 bit export
  • fix crash when adding processors which change overall track I/O configuration
  • fix deadlock when removing monitor section
  • ignore additional channels during AFL/PFL (if the track/bus has more channels than the monitor section, ignore the additional channels)
  • fix output metering for Sends
  • new MIDI binding map for Roland V-Studio 20
  • new very basic MIDI binding map for M-Audio Oxygen-25
  • fix display of pan automation and MIDI fader automation
  • working support for VST "timeinfo" delivery to plugins (Windows VST and Linux VST)
  • fix crash when instrument plugins fail to load
  • fix potential for duplicate Send IDs
  • auto connect preferences now respected for MIDI tracks
  • use all outputs of VST plugins, not just the input count

Ardour 3.5.143 released

Continuing on with our cycle of monthly releases, 3.5.143 is a bug fix release that comes out while other major development work continues on in the background. It fixes a handful of major bugs, notably with MIDI Clock, Generic MIDI control and Mackie Control support. You'll also find monitoring source control in the meter bridge, a new K12/RMS meter type, and more than a dozen other bug fixes.

As usual you can download it from the usual place, and as usual subscribers get this update without cost. Thanks to everyone for their support (and encouragement).

Once again, the OS X release situation has still not improved, though a demo 64 bit copy of 3.4 is available (fully featured except that is has does not have the video timeline, no saving or restoring of plugin settings, and no plugin presets).

Functional Bug Fixes

  • fix continuous send of MIDI start/position/stop messages introduced by mistake in last release
  • deliver MIDI clock position messages when stopped (e.g. when locating)
  • Mackie Control support now saves & restores port connections
  • fix feedback for Generic MIDI control support

New Features

  • allow (optional) In/Disk monitoring button in Meter Bridge
  • add K12/RMS meter type

Tweaks

  • When editing a clock value in "Samples" mode, treat an empty edit as a no-op.
  • Distinguish Save-as and Snapshot dialog windows
  • Metering: reset time-axis peak when meter-point changes
  • Fix for toolbar master-meter w/o master bus and/or detached toolbar
  • Fix a crash during export when using 8 bit format
  • Various minor fixups for the Audio/MIDI setup dialog
  • Fix up a bunch of confusion regarding the size/capacity/allocation of audio & midi buffers
  • Don't run MIDI clock "tick" if session is silent (e.g. due to a locate)
  • Load VST plugins using version > 2.4 but print a warning for each one (they may simply not work)
  • Recognize ppc64, ppc, s390x, s390 CPUs, default to 'none' instead of i686 (which tries to build with SSE and fails on non-x86 architectures).
  • Distinguish flags influencing optimization (overridable) from those necessary for building (e.g. for using SSE).
  • Fix a bug where memset was being used to fill a gain buffer with 1.0
  • Compare region names case-sensitively
  • Compare plugin/creator/category names UTF8-aware
  • LV2 plugins: adjust LV2 ringbuffer size according to LV2:resize-port
  • LV2 plugins: increase scratch buffer size to request port minimum size
  • rsynth.lv2: fix octave, and fix note off+on within same synth cycle
  • Midi Clock: fix wrong calculation of loop error, and fix bandwidth to 2/60 for best results
  • Mackie Control: fix various subtle problems when changing devices

Ardour 3.5.74 released

Ardour 3.5.74 is released to make sure that a variety of very useful fixes plus a couple of functional improvements are available to as many users as possible. If you use Ardour with one of our translations, you should almost certainly update, because there we have fixed lot of subtle breakage caused by the translation process. For others, read over the changes and you can decide for yourself if you would benefit from an update.

Read on below for more information on what was in 3.5.74 ...

Functional Changes

  • Unify editor + mixer ordering. After more than a decade of complexity, Ardour now has only a single ordering of tracks & busses. Modifying it in the editor window or the mixer window will also modify it in the other window. This reduces some tricky programming, and removes another choice offered to users that really just their lives more complex, with no great benefit.
  • Double-clicking now allows editing/renaming an expanded set of things, including regions and markers of various kinds.

Fixes and Improvements

  • Fix handling of the check button in the memory lock warning dialog
  • partially fix NSM support so that random use of NSM_URL doesn't cause crashes
  • fix MIDI quantization where a region was trimmed at the start or had an non-integer position
  • fix MIDI note lengths after quantization when using swing
  • place new routes after highest-numbered selected route, if any
  • make fixed IO port names untranslatable (e.g. "MTC in")
  • fix playback & capture channel counts when using the JACK dummy backend
  • fix MMC after changes included in 3.5 release
  • allow the use of the environment variable ARDOUR_LOVES_STUPID_TINY_SCREENS to override Ardour's refusal to show certain things on netbook/tablet-sized screens
  • Fix invalid silence trimmer end-of-input behavior during export. This caused corruption in the audio file when: normalizing AND adding silence to end AND having more than one channel.
  • make translations just work on OS X if system preferences has been used to select a supported language preference.
  • minor fixes based on various compiler optimization messages
  • keep processing LV2 Ringbuffer once it is allocated, but discard messages in LV2PluginUI::write_to_ui() if the ringbuffer exists but the plugin GUI is not active. This fixes "[ERROR]: Error writing from plugin to UI" messages if the plugin GUI was once active but has been closed since.

Build Related Fixes

  • remove all "fuzzy translations", thus fixing several problems experienced by users working in non-English locales
  • allow linking against unbundled versions of libltc, rubberband, taglib and vamp-sdk)
  • allow complete overriding of all optimization flags (if -O<something> is preset in the arguments given to --arch, we no longer prepend the default optimization flags)
  • fix test builds (./waf configure --test)

Developers

Nick Mainsbridge, Robin Gareus, Colin Fletcher, Tim Mayberry, Sakari Bergen, Nils Philippsen, Julien de Kozak, Paul Davis

Ardour 3.5.14 released

In order to fix a few notable issues with 3.5, we are releasing Ardour 3.5.14 today.

  • Click/Metronome not connected in new sessions
  • Impossible to record when using JACK Transport synchronization
  • MIDI output errors
  • the environment variable SUIL_MODULE_DIR is now overridden rather than appended to (it is not a search path). This fixes issues using the ardour.org bundles on Linux distributions like KXStudio which set SUIL_MODULE_DIR by default.
  • The OS X beta/demo is now enabled for translation if desired. This feature has not been present in earlier 3.x builds for OS X.
There are no other functional changes. The OS X 64 bit 10.7 or later beta/demo has been updated.

Read on below for more information on what was in 3.5 ...

Ardour 3.5 released

Another month, another Ardour update release. 3.5 doesn't include any major new features, but does come with a major architectural change and improvements in two significant aspects of workflow. As usual you can download it from the usual place, and as usual subscribers get this update without cost.

Ardour is now (theoretically) no longer dependent on JACK. The functionality provided by JACK has been abstracted to allow 3rd parties to provide implementations that directly use various platform native audio and MIDI APIs (such as CoreAudio on OS X or ASIO on Windows).

Of course, Ardour can still be run with JACK, and this option is not going away. We hope to see these other "backends" emerge over the next few months. For now, users should not experience any functional changes when using Ardour.

This has led to many improvements in the Ardour source code and some visible changes as the program starts up. Read more below for some details.

Is Ardour3 released for OS X yet?

As usual, OS X users are stuck with a beta demo release though unlike previous releases this is for 64 bit OS X 10.7 and later only. It will not run on early systems. We hope to have some resources to put into OS X after 3.7 is released.

What's up next?

The next major release 3.6 will feature an entirely new "canvas" for drawing and managing the editor window's main track display. Release 3.7 will be focused on significant fixes and improvements for MIDI workflows.

Changes

  • audio and midi I/O has been moved out of the core of Ardour into module(s) that are loaded dynamically
    • the JACK menu item in the main menu bar has been removed
    • a new window, the audio/MIDI Setup dialog can be accessed from the Windows menu
    • the audio/MIDI setup dialog allows precise calibration of I/O latency. It does the same job as jack_iodelay, but is fully integrated into Ardour itself.
    • the audio/MIDI setup dialog can also be used to change everything about JACK's configuration IF it was used to start JACK. This means that if you do use it to start JACK, you can dynamically change sample rate, the device in use, etc.
    • possible to specify the use of the new-ish JACK2 "alsarawmidi" slave driver, and the not-yet-released JACK1 "alsa_midi" slave driver. These both provide better timing and lower latency for MIDI routing to/from hardware than either of the two legacy options. Similar options exist for OS X (or will when we do an official release).
    • if you start JACK outside of Ardour (e.g. via qjackctl or JackPilot) then the audio/MIDI setup dialog can still be used to dynamically change the buffer size and reconnect to JACK if necessary (this replaces the old menu functionality).
  • startup, session loading
    • there is a new session loading dialog. Choose whether to create a new session, open a recent session or browse for less-recent sessions, all in the same window/page.
    • see the sample rate and audio data format of a session before opening it.
    • internal code design has been radically overhauled to make reasoning about session loading possible.
    • if you allow Ardour to start JACK, and the session sample rate does not match the current JACK sample rate, it will be changed dynamically to match.
  • Video range export. It is now possible to export (to video) just a given range within the session. Accessible from both the range context menu and the main Export menu.

Fixes and Improvements

  • improvements in performance of MTC and MIDI Clock sync (it was already good, now it is even better)
  • don't display metrics for invisible tracks in meterbridge
  • make narrow mixer meters slightly wider, hide metrics instead
  • new MIDI binding map for Novation Impulse 61
  • fix compilation for ARM systems
  • fix crash loading 2.x sessions with incorrect options in ardour.rc or session file
  • plugin GUIs made visible via the editor mixer strip remain visible when the currently selected track(s) change
  • The Mackie Control editor/GUI now has a sane height and width
  • Updates to the software libraries used by Ardour, including:
    • GTK+ (used for the GUI of Ardour, now at version 2.24.23 with patches)
    • Pango (used for drawing text, now at version 1.36.0)
    • Cairo (used for drawing everything, now at version 1.12.16)
    • Fontconfig (used for managing fonts on Linux, now at version 2.11.0)

Developers

Paul Davis, Tim Mayberry, Robin Gareus, Alexandre Prokoudine, Nils Philippsen

Testers

Thanks as usual to all the Ardour users on the #ardour IRC channel and elsewhere who have been testing the substantial changes that led to 3.5 as they happened. Particular thanks to Chris Goddard, Axel Müller for their intensive involvement in this process.

Translation Updates

  • Russian translation updated (Alexandre Prokoudine)
  • German translation updated (Edgar Aichinger)