Hints and tricks for linux audio software

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

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laba170
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Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby laba170 » Sun Jan 31, 2010 9:25 pm

Do you know a trick or two in ardour/hydrogen/zynaddsubfx etc? I thought we could have a thread going where we tell each other about features that may go unnoticed...

For instance: In seq24, you use the middle mouse button/mouse wheel to resize notes. I was just
lucky to find out, and if not, I wouldn't have found seq24 usable at all.

Everyone who use seq24 regularly probably know already, but I hope this hint will be helpful to others.
Last edited by laba170 on Mon Feb 01, 2010 2:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

SR
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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby SR » Sun Jan 31, 2010 10:08 pm

What type of stuff do you use seq24 for? I've looked at it briefly and didn't find the interface to be intuitive enough to hold my interest for very long. Do you find any advantages to using it instead of Rosegarden or Qtractor?

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby laba170 » Sun Jan 31, 2010 10:44 pm

SR wrote:What type of stuff do you use seq24 for? I've looked at it briefly and didn't find the interface to be intuitive enough to hold my interest for very long. Do you find any advantages to using it instead of Rosegarden or Qtractor?


1. I like the workflow, but that's subjective of course. In short, it's good if you like "pattern-based" composing. You create some patterns that sound good together first, and then align them in the song-editor. I like how you can create the foundations of a song in a hurry, and work from there.. Seeing the big picture early is quite motivating.

2. I like the piano-roll, mostly because I find piano-rolls in other programs to be somewhat cramped, and I find the looks appealing. Of course, that's just my opinion. It also has some nice features, for example having another pattern in the background of the pattern you are actually working on. (you see the other pattern it in the piano-roll, but it doesn't make any sound), and indicating different scales.

By the way, in the song editor, you can "split" patterns with the mouse wheel. That way you can have a pattern starting midways in.
Last edited by laba170 on Mon Feb 01, 2010 2:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby roaldz » Mon Feb 01, 2010 10:15 am

Its too bad that some versions constantly crash when clicking the Q (quantize) button, or won't sync with jack properly, and that saved seq24 sessions with lash don't reconnect alsa properly so your patterns aren't working the next time you open the project. It also behave's strange when playing notes on midi keyboard while going from beat 4 to beat 1 in a pattern. You get all kinds of stretched notes and weird stuff.

Its a cool sequencer, but these little bugs make it unusable.

Roald

StudioDave
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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby StudioDave » Mon Feb 01, 2010 11:57 am

roaldz wrote:Its too bad that some versions constantly crash...


Are you using this version :

https://launchpad.net/seq24

?

Best,

dp

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby laba170 » Sat Mar 06, 2010 12:41 pm

I just found another "hidden" feature: In zynaddsubfx, you get more precise control if you turn the knobs/controls with your right mouse button. I hope this is useful to some of you, if you don't already know this.

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby laba170 » Fri Apr 09, 2010 11:47 am

Yet another neat seq24 feature:

For the automation bars, if you select them (select the dots just above the automation panel) you can change their height with your mouse wheel. Very useful if you want program-changes for example, and need to set precise values.

By the way, Do anyone know any neat tricks for the non-sequencer? Or maybe someone could try explaining it's workflow? It's seems like a nice app, but I haven't been able to do anything with it, other than just making sound...

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby laba170 » Thu Jun 10, 2010 4:58 pm

Still more seq24:

Not only can you resize all notes in your selection individually with middle mouse button, but you can resize the whole selection with shift+middle mouse button.

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby autostatic » Wed Jul 28, 2010 7:54 pm

Yoshimi (and ZynAddSubFX):
Some of my inklings/songs require more than one Yoshimi instrument. Of course you can start up several Yoshimi instances but it is also possible to load up to 16 different instruments within one single Yoshimi instance. The first instrument is loaded in part 1 so if you select the following part you can load a new instrument into that part and enable it. Dead simple actually.
Maybe this is common knowledge but I didn't know better than that I had to fire up a new instance of Yoshimi whenever I needed another instrument.

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby autostatic » Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:01 pm

Hydrogen:
The empty.wav trick. I've created a sample of 5 minutes of silence and whenever I need to trigger a softsynth from Hydrogen I create a new instrument in Hydrogen, load the empty.wav file into it and record or edit the notes in the piano roll. Hydrogen is sample based so no sample means no sound/output.

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby autostatic » Sun Aug 22, 2010 8:36 am

Hydrogen:
The empty.wav trick works well but for short notes it's better to use a short sample. Otherwise you might run into polyphony limits and notes might get muted.

Qtractor:
I've made a tutorial on how to use sidechain compression in Qtractor: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnAqk054g7E

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby autostatic » Thu Sep 30, 2010 4:15 pm

How to use a vocoder in Qtractor: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tusCeI1aQ4c

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby laba170 » Thu Sep 30, 2010 5:41 pm

ZynAddSubFX:

If you think your patches sound dull and you want them to sound sharper, you can use resonance in addition to increasing the cut off frequency.

Simply create a single, wide dump in the middle. Then tweak C.F, Oct, and max db. You should hear it sound significantly sharper when you hit the right spot.

I wish I knew why it works though. It just does.

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby laba170 » Thu Oct 21, 2010 8:28 pm

Zynaddsubfx:

This is basic stuff, guess most of you know this, but for those who don't... It's a must for anyone using patches other's have made or creating patches themselves.

Create a bank folder for all your patches in your home directory instead of having it down in some stupid read only location. Then open up zynaddsubfx:

file-> settings -> bank root dirs ->

Make note of the directory set to default. Go there, and copy the contents to your banks folder located in home.
Then delete everything, and add your own bank folder instead. That way, you can easily add banks other people have made, (just copy the whole folder into your banks dir) and you can save new patches very quickly. (the write option.)

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Re: Hints and tricks for linux audio software

Postby autostatic » Mon Jan 24, 2011 9:46 pm

seq24: Toggle sequences with a MIDI controller.

It is documented in the SEQ24 file but I haven't found any reference of anyone using it so I tried to set this up myself because toggling sequences with your keyboard is just not very practical.

Ingredients: seq24, a MIDI controller (in my case an AKAI MPK Mini), some time
After starting seq24 for the first time it will create a .seq24rc file in your home directory, open it and the first section you'll see, [midi-control], is the section we need. The matrix represents the first two screensets (entries 0 up to and including 63) and some control keys (entries 64 up to and including 73). The three fields between the brackets on each line correspond to a MIDI filter, if the incoming MIDI event matches the filter it will either toggle (first field), enable (second field) or disable (third field) the sequence.

The layout of each filter inside the bracket is as follows:

[(on/off) (inverse) (midi status byte (channel ignored)) (data1) (data2 min) (data2 max)]

If the on/off is set to 1, it will match the incoming midi to the pattern and perform the action (on/off/toggle) if the data falls in the range specified. All values are in decimal.

The last three is the range of data that will match. MIDI status byte values can be looked up here: http://www.midi.org/techspecs/midimessages.php

As the channel on which the events are sent is ignored you should always use the values for channel 1 of the MIDI Message Table 1. An example of the [midi-control] section of my .seq24rc file I use with the MPK Mini:

Code: Select all

[midi-control]
74
0 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144  96   0 127] [1 0 128  96   0 127]
1 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144  97   0 127] [1 0 128  97   0 127]
2 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144  98   0 127] [1 0 128  98   0 127]
3 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144  99   0 127] [1 0 128  99   0 127]
4 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 100   0 127] [1 0 128 100   0 127]
5 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 101   0 127] [1 0 128 101   0 127]
6 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 102   0 127] [1 0 128 102   0 127]
7 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 103   0 127] [1 0 128 103   0 127]
8 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 104   0 127] [1 0 128 104   0 127]
9 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 105   0 127] [1 0 128 105   0 127]
10 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 106   0 127] [1 0 128 106   0 127]
11 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 107   0 127] [1 0 128 107   0 127]
12 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 108   0 127] [1 0 128 108   0 127]
13 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 109   0 127] [1 0 128 109   0 127]
14 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 110   0 127] [1 0 128 110   0 127]
15 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [1 0 144 111   0 127] [1 0 128 111   0 127]
16 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
17 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
18 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
19 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
20 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
21 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
22 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
23 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
24 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
25 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
26 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
27 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
28 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
29 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
30 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
31 [0 0 0  0   0 0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# mute in group
32 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
33 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
34 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
35 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
36 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
37 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
38 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
39 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
40 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
41 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
42 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
43 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
44 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
45 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
46 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
47 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
48 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
49 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
50 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
51 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
52 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
53 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
54 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
55 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
56 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
57 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
58 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
59 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
60 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
61 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
62 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
63 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# bpm up
64 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# bpm down
65 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# screen set up
66 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# screen set down
67 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# mod replace
68 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# mod snapshot
69 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# mod queue
70 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [1 0 176  64 127 127] [1 0 176  64   0   0]
# mod gmute
71 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# mod glearn
72 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]
# screen set play
73 [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0] [0 0   0   0   0   0]


What this example does is listening for notes 96 up to and including 111 and it toggles the sequences on note on events and toggles it off on note off events. But what about queuing sequences? Well, the Akai MPK Mini has a Sustain button and I've set this MIDI event up as the queue modifier (see above, the fields after entry 70 which corresponds with 'mod queue'). So when I hold down this button and press one of the pads on my MPK Mini the corresponding sequence gets queued.

Best,

Jeremy


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