Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - Fully working as of July 2021

What other apps and distros do you use to round out your studio?

Moderators: khz, MattKingUSA

Post Reply
chrisanthropic
Established Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:52 pm
Been thanked: 6 times

Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - Fully working as of July 2021

Post by chrisanthropic »

Like some of you, I've been following the development of Pipewire for a bit and finally decided to see if it can replace my current setup.

TLDR; - as of today, Pipewire can completely replace my existing workflow with the exception of one bug (See BUGS below).

SETUP
My pre-pipewire setup is as follows:
  • Arch Linux
  • Alsa (1.2.5)
  • Pulseaudio (14.2-3)
  • Jack2 (1.9.18-1)
  • Cadence (0.9.1-4)
  • Catia (0.9.0)
  • Ardour (6.7)
  • Intel motherboard w/integrated Audio
  • Nvidia graphics card w/Audio
  • Monitor speakers w/HDMI audio ('screen' monitor, not professional audio monitors)
  • Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB Audio Interface
WORKFLOW
I use Catia for my Patch bay
I use Cadence to start/stop Jack, bridge Alsa -> Pulse -> Jack

Ultimately, this setup allows me to run Ardour, watch youtube tutorials, and listen to reference tracks, all through my Audio Interface.

I'm hoping Pipewire is able to be a drop-in replacement.

PROCESS
  • First I removed all non-default Alsa, Pulse, and Jack configs.
  • Next I followed the Arch Wiki for installing Pipewire and installed

Code: Select all

pipewire (1:0.3.30-2)
pipewire-jack (1:0.3.30-2)
pipewire-pulse (1:0.3.30-2)
pipewire-alsa (1:0.3.30-2)
pipewire-jack-dropin (3-1)
  • reboot

RESULTS
  • All sound cards are recognized
  • All sound cards show up in Catia
  • Firefox audio works, able to use sound applet to switch between all sound cards (Audio Interface, Intel, Nvidia, HDMI)
  • Vital, Helm, and LSP-EQ standalone apps all launch and play sound successfully
  • Ardour launches and plays sound
BONUS
  • Bluetooth headset works out of the box
BUGS
  • Playing sound through my Audio Interface from Firefox and Ardour simultaneously will crash Ardour 100% of the time.
  • When I started testing last week, any Midi plugins that would use the Ardour "fan-out" feature would crash Ardour and require a restart of Pipewire, but as of the most recent update this is no longer happening.
DECISION
Given the results and simplicity (all default configs) I'm very happy with Pipewire so far.
Last edited by chrisanthropic on Thu Jul 22, 2021 2:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
chrisanthropic
Established Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:52 pm
Been thanked: 6 times

Re: Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - fully working as of July 2021

Post by chrisanthropic »

After updating to the recent Pipewire release, everything works as expected!

As of Pipewire version 1:0.3.32-1 I can start Firefox, play a Youtube tutorial, and follow along with Ardour and I no longer need to use Cadence or Jack2 directly!

Pipewire has now fully replaced Jack/Alsa/Pulse on my system and its a nice experience.
folderol
Established Member
Posts: 1284
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2015 8:06 pm
Location: Here, of course!
Has thanked: 19 times
Been thanked: 39 times
Contact:

Re: Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - Fully working as of July 2021

Post by folderol »

What's the buffersize/latency?
chrisanthropic
Established Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:52 pm
Been thanked: 6 times

Re: Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - Fully working as of July 2021

Post by chrisanthropic »

Using all defaults set the buffersize to 1024 which resulted in 21.3 ms latency on my machine.

That said, I was just able to the Ardour UI to change the Jack buffersize to my standard 256 with 5.3 ms latency and so far am not seeing any issues, though I've only done a cursory test.
folderol
Established Member
Posts: 1284
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2015 8:06 pm
Location: Here, of course!
Has thanked: 19 times
Been thanked: 39 times
Contact:

Re: Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - Fully working as of July 2021

Post by folderol »

Hmmm. I normally work with a buffer size of 32 or 64 @ 48kHz.
User avatar
bluebell
Established Member
Posts: 1539
Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 11:44 am
Location: Saarland & Frankfurt, Germany
Has thanked: 7 times
Been thanked: 8 times

Re: Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - Fully working as of July 2021

Post by bluebell »

folderol wrote: Fri Jul 23, 2021 7:57 am Hmmm. I normally work with a buffer size of 32 or 64 @ 48kHz.
It might be a question of the number of plugins loaded in a session.
Linux – MOTU UltraLite AVB – Qtractor – https://soundcloud.com/suedwestlicht
folderol
Established Member
Posts: 1284
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2015 8:06 pm
Location: Here, of course!
Has thanked: 19 times
Been thanked: 39 times
Contact:

Re: Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - Fully working as of July 2021

Post by folderol »

bluebell wrote: Fri Jul 23, 2021 10:44 am
folderol wrote: Fri Jul 23, 2021 7:57 am Hmmm. I normally work with a buffer size of 32 or 64 @ 48kHz.
It might be a question of the number of plugins loaded in a session.
Good Point. I normally work with Yoshimi, Rosegarden, Qsynth, Hydrogen, Audacity - no plugins.
User avatar
Michael Willis
Established Member
Posts: 1199
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2016 3:27 pm
Location: Rocky Mountains, North America
Has thanked: 12 times
Been thanked: 32 times
Contact:

Re: Pipewire, Ardour, and Arch - Fully working as of July 2021

Post by Michael Willis »

This is pretty amazing. Some time ago I kind of dismissed pipewire as vaporware, but over the last year I've been reading reports of people actually using it successfully. Sure, there are bugs needing to be fixed and performance improvements to be made, but that will happen in time. Now I think that maybe some day I might actually try using pipewire.
Post Reply