LV2 gaining momentum

The number of new LV2 plugins being released is steadily growing. The last couple of months at least the following LV2 plugins have been released:

  • Bitrot (a set of LV2 and LADSPA plugins for glitch effects)
  • beatslash-lv2 (a set of plugins for live beat repeating and beat slicing)
  • deteriorate-lv2 (a set of plugins to deteriorate the sound quality of live inputs)
  • midimsg-lv2 (a set of plugins to transform midi output into usable values to control other plugins)
  • QmidiArp (LV2 plugins of the three QMidiArp modules)
  • x42-plugins (collection of LV2 plugins: tuner, oscillator, x-fader, audio-level meters, midi filters etc.)
  • BLOP-LV2 (port of the LADSPA BLOP plugins)

Haven’t tried them all of them yet but the ones I did try (the QmidiArp modules as plugins and some of the x42 plugins) proved to be very promising. Besides new plugins being released work continues on a great number of plugins, the LV2 framework itself and on tools facilitating in the creation or building of LV2 plugins. Especially falkTX is in the vanguard with his current work on getting his Carla plugin host to work as a LV2 plugin. This would open up a lot of possibilities like using it in hosts that don’t support all plugin frameworks (think Ardour and DSSI support). In the meanwhile the guitarix team continues to add great LV2 plugins to their ever growing collection and Dave Robillard, the main author of LV2, doesn’t sit still either with releasing updated versions of the building blocks that form the LV2 framework.

LV2 gaining momentum

Bitwig Studio to be released

The 26th of March Bitwig Studio will be released. From the Bitwig Studio site:

Bitwig Studio is a multi-platform music-creation system for production, remixing and performance with a focus on flexible editing tools and a super-fast workflow.

It’s being developed by folks who have worked on Ableton Live and it will also be available for Linux. It’s a cross-platform DAW which means that for the GUI a platform agnostic framework has been used. In the case of Bitwig Studio the chosen framework is most probably Java which raised some eyebrows within the Linux Audio community. The price of the upcoming product met some scepticism too as it ends up higher than initially announced. Add to this that there’s barely any support for plugins (except native Linux VST) and you’ll understand that this upcoming release has fueled a discussion or two.

I haven’t seen anything yet of Bitwig Studio so I can’t judge the quality, workflow or usability of the product. I’ve registered for a beta testing account two years ago and didn’t hear anything from the Bitwig folks until recently so to be honest I completely lost interest in the product in the meanwhile.

Really, the people from Tracktion do it a lot better in that regard I think, it’s cheaper, they communicate more and it’s based on a cross-platform toolkit that has more credibility (Juce). But you never know, maybe I’ll get blown away when I get my hands on Bitwig Studio. You’ll be the first to hear.

Bitwig Studio to be released

Workshops Music Production with Open Source Software: Introduction and Basic Principles

This Saturday my series of workshops about music production with open source software will kick off. The first workshop will be an introduction to the open source ecosystem and attendees will get acquainted with some basic Linux audio principles; different work-flows (monolithic vs modular), ALSA/JACK/PulseAudio, most used and most useful applications and maybe a bit about plug-in frameworks (LADSPA/DSSI/LV2/VST). I will also outline the content of the following workshops and this workshop is a gauge to see if there is enough interest. So people should show up in considerate numbers because I’m not going to invest another 5 Saturday afternoons for just a few people. After all, I’m doing this for free (as in beer).

Announcement on the site of De Bakkerij

Facebook event

Workshops Music Production with Open Source Software: Introduction and Basic Principles

Carla on the Raspberry Pi

Last week I managed to get Carla running on my RPi. Carla is a really nice plugin host that supports the most important plugin frameworks available for Linux (LV2, DSSI, LADSPA and VST) with some awesome extra features like a built-in ZynAddSubFX synth and support for SF2, SFZ and GIG files. The latter didn’t work until yesterday but I managed to compile LinuxSampler (which is needed by Carla in order to be able to load SFZ and GIG files) for the RPi with the help of Paul Brossier aka piem from the Aubio project.

I just wrote him a mail:

Hello Paul,

I’m trying to package LinuxSampler for Raspberry Pi but I’m running into an issue when compiling which fails with a message related to RTMath.h. After some googling I ended up here:
So I started scouring the interwebs and found this:
Where there is a reference to a possible fix. But the diff.gz that contains the patch is untraceable. I know this announcement is almost 8 years old but do you think you still have the diff or maybe an idea what changes you made to the code?

Thanks in advance and keep up the good work with Aubio!

Best regards,

Jeremy Jongepier

And guess what, he replied almost instantly! He gave me some pointers where to add some extra code and even though I’m not a coder I started trying things out. But then I stumbled upon actual patches to resolve this issue. I needed both the ARM and atomic patch and after applying those LinuxSampler compiled flawlessly in my Raspbian ARM chroot. The few lines of code I cooked up myself were almost identical so I got quite far actually. I should really pick up learning how to code, I think I’d learn fast.

So after compiling LinuxSampler I could rebuild Carla against the freshly created LinuxSampler libs. Installed the deb on my RPi and loaded some SFZ’s. It all worked like a charm. Carla is like a Swiss Army Knife, I’m really starting to appreciate this piece of software. Kudos to falkTX! And thanks to Paul Brossier for responding so quickly and helping me to get on the right track.

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Carla running on the Raspberry Pi

Carla on the Raspberry Pi

Nog meer LV2!

Het Portal MOD project is bezig een aantal LADSPA plug-ins om te zetten naar LV2, waaronder CAPS, TAP, SooperLooper en guitarix. En voor zo ver ik begrepen heb werken ze ook aan een van rakarrack afgeleide LV2 plug-in.

CAPS is al omgezet naar LV2 en heb source pakket klaar om up te loaden naar de KXStudio-Team plugins repository. Maar wacht nog even de puntjes op de i af.

Ondertussen is een van de main devs van guitarix ook met LV2 aan het experimenteren.  Hij zit alleen nog te dubben of hij heel guitarix in één plug-in gaat stoppen of dat hij alle losse componenten van guitarix om gaat zetten naar LV2.

guitarix amp head als LV2 plug-in

Voeg daar nog aan toe dat degene achter LV2, David Robillard (aka drobilla), er aan zit te denken om een boek te schrijven over LV2 en je begrijpt wel dat LV2 op het moment best wel een hot item is. Gaat het ooit gebeuren dat er een open source, cross-platform plug-in framework VST naar de kroon gaat steken? De LAD community is er klaar voor, de wrapper tools staan in de steigers (DISTRHO) en met NASPRO is het al mogelijk om eigenlijk alles als LV2 te draaien.

Nog meer LV2!

Nog meer mididings

Mididings script voor 29 oktober is klaar:


from mididings import *
from mididings.extra import *


    Filter(PROGRAM) >> [
            ProgramFilter(0) >> NoteOn(64,50),
            ProgramFilter(7) >> NoteOn(69,86),
            ProgramFilter(0) >> NoteOn(72,60),
            ProgramFilter(1) >> NoteOn(74,62),
            ProgramFilter(2) >> NoteOn(76,64),
            ProgramFilter(3) >> NoteOn(71,30),
            ProgramFilter(7) >> NoteOn(77,88),
            ProgramFilter(8) >> NoteOn(79,96),
            ProgramFilter(9) >> NoteOn(81,84),
        ] >>
        LatchNotes() >> [
            KeyFilter(64) % NoteOff(69,0),
            KeyFilter(69) % NoteOff(64,0),
        ProgramFilter(4) >> Panic(),
        ProgramFilter(10) >>
        Channel(2) >>

Met dit script kan ik nu de strijkers spelen in Soda P – Icon of your Time en heb een Vibraslap sample van in een soundfontje gezet met Swami zodat ik deze met de FluidSynth DSSI plug-in ook vanuit Qtractor kan triggeren met behulp van de Boss FC-50. De strijkers gaan via het eerste paralelle ‘blok’ waarin Program Changes worden omgezet in Note Ons, daarna gaan ze door de LatchNotes Unit en daarna worden in een genest parallel blok nog twee Note Offs gedefinieerd. Stuurt de FC-50 Program Change 4 uit dan worden alle noten uitgezet (‘Panic’), bij Program Change 10 stuurt mididings een MIDI noot 36 op MIDI kanaal 2 naar Qtractor voor de Vibraslap. Het config deel aan het begin van het script vertelt mididings dat er JACK MIDI poorten aangemaakt moeten worden met als naam ‘sodap-live’. data_offset=0 is nodig omdat de FC-50 bij 0 begint met tellen en niet bij 1.

Nog meer mididings


Afgelopen donderdag weer eens op een podium gestaan met Soda P na twee jaar niet opgetreden te hebben. In het eerste nummer van de set, Not Dead Yet, zit een Optigan en om dit live te kunnen spelen had ik m’n notebook, FireWire geluidskaart en keyboardje mee. Het geluid dat het dichtste in de buurt kwam van de Optigan was een MelloFlute soundfont, alleen ging die niet lager dan G2 en aangezien ik een F2 nodig had heb ik die er met Swami en Rubberband bijgezet. Swami om de G2 sample te exporteren en de soundfont te bewerken, Rubberband om de G2 sample een hele noot omlaag te pitchen naar F2. In Qtractor een project aangemaakt met de FluidSynth DSSI plug-in en uiteindelijk was het op het podium een kwestie van notebook aanzetten, Qtractor opstarten, project inladen en juiste uitgang geluidskaart aansluiten op een DI. Ging perfect. Het optreden ook trouwens.