guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Programming applications for making music on Linux.

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StudioDave
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guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by StudioDave »

Greetings,

I'm writing a review of the latest Guitarix and I have some suggestions for the developers. I'll be rather blunt here, but my intent is not to diss any of the fine work already put into this excellent app. However, for all its internal polish its UI still needs some low-level attention. So here we go:

The text needs consistency throughout the application. For example, here are the errors just in the About panel: "Aplication" should be spelled "application", it does not need capitalized in English. The grammar in that sentence is broken and would read much better as "... the marvelous Faust compiler by Yann Orlary and his team at GRAME" (with the link for GRAME of course). A period should be added after the URL following Albert Graef's name. "guitarix 0.12.0svn use jack_capture..." should be corrected to "uses jack_capture". "it will allways" should be "It will always...". The same thing at "for impulse response it use...", it should be "For impulse response convolution it uses..." and brackets should be placed around the URLs for Kjetil and Fons. A period should follow Fons's URL. Finally, "authors:" and "home:" should read "Authors:" and "Home:".

Proceeding to the main panel we find more of the same, with inconsistent capitalization throughout the whole panel. Why are the tone controls labeled Bass, Middle, and Treble, while the volume controls are labeled "in/level" and "out/master" ? I suggest using capitalization consistently, so that "preamp" becomes "Preamp" and so forth. Also, "anti aliase" might read better as "anti-alias", "amplifier" ought to be "Amplifier", and so on.

In the slooper pane the record and playback buttons are mismatched with the first button (the green square), giving the buttons a rather clunky appearance as though they were pasted in as an afterthought.

In the About menu neither the Show Tooltips nor the Help items do anything. Am I missing something or are those items broken ?

In the Options menu, why does the Meterbridge item summon five instances of the meters ? In the same menu we find the problem with orthographical consistency in the jack_capture dialog.

It's "MIDI", not "Midi". It's an acronym, and in English acronyms are printed in all caps. Yes, the rule isn't always observed, but that isn't a good excuse, at least not for a grammar-guardian like myself. ;) Again, be consistent, don't use Midi in one place and MIDI in another.

It has been my experience that some developers get pissed off when they receive this sort of information. They either do not care about such detail or they feel they don't need told how to write in English. Hopefully the Guitarix team will take this criticism as a user's contribution towards making the program even more professional. It already sounds fantastic - I've been making a set of presets I'll contribute to the community - and I would simply like it to appear as good as it sounds.

Btw, I realize that window resizing and font issues may drive the decision to use upper or lower case lettering. However, such issues should not stand in the way of developing a consistent UI. There are solutions, other programs have found them, and hopefully Guitarix will too.

My review has focused on the sounds I get from Guitarix, so have no fear, I'm not planning to criticize its spelling or other UI anomalies. I know that English is not a first language for some of the developers, and I hope they take this critique in the spirit in which it is offered, i.e. in the hope of making a fine program even better.

Best regards,

dp

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maghoxfr
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Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by maghoxfr »

That's the way to make a constructive criticism, I kkow some people could get offended when someone corrects their grammar, I hope is not the case with Guitarix's developers. It's already awesome and the correction of the small issues you mention would make it even better.

Pablo
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Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by Pablo »

Guitarix is awesome. I am longing for a stable release of gx_head. Its GUI has improved hugely! It feels far better than before. And you can connect rakarrack as an insert. There are not a lot of options for guitar players in GNU/Linux, BUT: gx_head and rakarrack collaborating is ... I lack words in English. A huge advance.

So, hermann and friends, thank you very much! I would love to see the typos corrected and a consistent typography, but hey anybody can do it and send a patch, no? I don't dare though. Thanks for guitarix.

Regards, Pablo

brummer

Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by brummer »

Hey,

Thanks for the hints, indeed my native language isn't English, but anyway, it wouldn't help if it was, because I'm Dyslexics :? :) . It will be a hard torture for me to correct all grammatical Issues, but I will do my best to do it. Any hints in that direction are more then welcome, same as ready to apply patch's. :D

To the tooltips, they are more related to the Convolver Settings widget and mostly only apply there, in the main widget there is only a tooltip to the level widget. Indeed the help menu is empty, it is for future includes hopefully with a given text from the English part of the community. :D

To the Meterbridge , yup a "bug", it's because guitarix have 5 jack ports, it's one Meterbrige per port, properly a bit confusing. Will change that.

Be sure that I will never be pissed of because of a critic, a hint or a suggestion, or what ever people say about guitarix, it is a Open Source Project, focused on the part "OPEN" in the meaning of "Owned by the Open Source Community", every one how like could be a part of the project, a bunch of people have contributed already, and I hope more will follow, that is what makes guitarix so shine.

So I'm curious for your new review and your presets, I would like to include a set of it to the next release.

thanks in advance hermann

@ Pablo
A release of gx_head will not come so soon, at time it is a prof of concept, I don't believe that a release is possible before middle of next year.

StudioDave
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Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by StudioDave »

brummer wrote:... It will be a hard torture for me to correct all grammatical Issues, but I will do my best to do it. Any hints in that direction are more then welcome, same as ready to apply patch's.
I will prepare the patches this week. I thank you and the Guitarix team for all your great work, I'll be happy to contribute to give something back.

Are labels and other text stored in a single file ?
To the tooltips, they are more related to the Convolver Settings widget and mostly only apply there, in the main widget there is only a tooltip to the level widget. Indeed the help menu is empty, it is for future includes hopefully with a given text from the English part of the community.
This is an area that could use help from a non-programmer, so perhaps someone here could step up to the job ?

Guitarix really needs a tutorial help file. I've been playing through hardware amplifiers for about 40 years of my life, and I still couldn't tell you what everything does in Guitarix. Yes, I'm learning a lot by playing around with it, but experiments can be better directed with some basic guidance. It's also a tall order: A good tutorial will not only explain terms, it will also demonstrate the use of each function and control in the app, and that's a lot of functions and controls. Some background on amplifier design would be most helpful, or even some links to such information.
To the Meterbridge , yup a "bug", it's because guitarix have 5 jack ports, it's one Meterbrige per port, properly a bit confusing.
Okay, thanks for the clarification. It's not a problem, it just looks weird.
Be sure that I will never be pissed of because of a critic, a hint or a suggestion, or what ever people say about guitarix, it is a Open Source Project, focused on the part "OPEN" in the meaning of "Owned by the Open Source Community", every one how like could be a part of the project, a bunch of people have contributed already, and I hope more will follow, that is what makes guitarix so shine.
Now *that* is what I love about open-source development. Sometimes people point out that "open source != open minds" but obviously that's not the case for this project. With your kind of attitude I'm confident that Guitarix will thrive and continue to evolve in interesting and useful directions.
So I'm curious for your new review and your presets, I would like to include a set of it to the next release.
I hope to complete the review in the next few days. If you like, I'll send it to you before it's published, you can let me know where I've got things wrong. :)

The presets collection is coming along, but I'll make no claims for its deep musical utility. I'm really just setting up a bunch of "starter" patches that could serve as the bases for more complex patches.
thanks in advance
Again, my thanks to you and the team for the wonderful software, I'm enjoying the latest version.

Btw, my next two articles are focused on guitar software/hardware for the Linux guitarist. I've already profiled Guitarix, Rakarrack, and Fender's Mustang 1 amplifier. After that article goes on-line I'll submit part 2, which will take a look into Guitar Pro 6 and Tux Guitar.
A release of gx_head will not come so soon, at time it is a prof of concept, I don't believe that a release is possible before middle of next year.
Too bad, we'll just have to wait and somehow survive with just Guitarix and its new features. Oh well. ;)

Best regards,

dp

PS: Is there a flowchart available that indicates Guitarix's signal processing chain ? It might be helpful to see how Guitarix routes a signal once it enters the program.

brummer

Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by brummer »

StudioDave wrote:I will prepare the patches this week. I thank you and the Guitarix team for all your great work, I'll be happy to contribute to give something back.

Are labels and other text stored in a single file ?
Hi Dave

Unfortunately no, chars are set in the source direct( :oops: ) as gtk_label, mostly int gx_interface_builder.cpp, gx_main_interface.cpp and gx_paramtable.cpp.
StudioDave wrote:Guitarix really needs a tutorial help file.
I have set up a MEDIA WIKI page on the SourceForge project Page, guitarix friend merlinthegreen have already started to create a tutorial there, but it is incomplete for now.
http://sourceforge.net/apps/mediawiki/g ... =Main_Page
There you could also find a description of the Signal flow.
StudioDave wrote:If you like, I'll send it to you before it's published, you can let me know where I've got things wrong. :)

Would love that :D
StudioDave wrote:Too bad, we'll just have to wait and somehow survive with just Guitarix and its new features. Oh well. ;)
:lol: :lol: :lol:

Hey nice one, anyway, gx_head is absolutely in a stable stage and nicely playable, anybody can check it out from SVN and play with it. Only the (rack) preset behaviour could change a bit in the next time, so it isn't usable in professional environments for now, when you need to restore your results, but for play around and check it out it's a try worth, I guess.
today I have commit a function to auto resize the 2 racks to the minimal needed space when plugs are removed/added and the rack isn't higher then 605pix. Otherwise a scrollbar will added. But you can resize the rack at any time when you wish. Racks can save and reload,
For those how only wish to use the amp head (with Rakarrack, for example) they be save, on the head and the convolver, nothing will change any more before a release, except a bug is coming along.

greats hermann

brummer

Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by brummer »

Hi Dave

For grammatical correction it will be good enough when you just compare the wrong -> right spelling in a text file, I could use my IDE (CODE::BLOCKS) then to search ad replace in Project.So you don't need to search the places in the source by your self.

greats hermann

StudioDave
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Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by StudioDave »

brummer wrote:For grammatical correction it will be good enough when you just compare the wrong -> right spelling in a text file, I could use my IDE (CODE::BLOCKS) then to search ad replace in Project.So you don't need to search the places in the source by your self.
My apologies for falling out of the loop for a while. I installed a new Ubuntu 10.04 and in the process wiped out my new set of patches for Guitarix, and since then I've been swamped with performance work. I'm taking next week for vacation, I'll get back into the Guitarix stuff then.

Meanwhile you might like to know that Ubuntu User magazine contracted me to write an article about using a guitar or musical keyboard with Ubuntu. Of course, Guitarix gets mentioned, along with a screenshot. Rakarrack too. I don't know when the article will run, I'll let you know as soon as I find out.

The long article for LJ will also run soon, I'll let you know about that one too.

Best,

dp

brummer

Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by brummer »

Hi Dave

Yea great, guitarix have just hit ubuntu now official in "natty", I'm a debian/sid user, but I have subscripted to launchpad to be responsible for possible Bug reports against guitarix in ubuntu.
By the way, I didn't know if you have seen already, next version will come with localisation, then there will be all used strings in a *.po file and will be more easy to maintain. :wink:

Have some nice (holy)days, many thanks for your continues work, it's very match appreciated.

regards hermann

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autostatic
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Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by autostatic »

brummer wrote:Yea great, guitarix have just hit ubuntu now official in "natty"
Cool!!! But hopefully they manage to come up with a solution for this cgroups thing first :(

http://lwn.net/SubscriberLink/420407/49f5175c9e7f2b85/ (You need to be subscribed to lwn.net to be able to read it)

https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+sour ... bug/690010

And best wishes to you too!!

Best,

Jeremy

brummer

Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by brummer »

Yea, I follow the discussion on the Jack-Devel list, thorben have already created a patch for jack witch respect also the client side. But guitarix and zita-convolver needs a rework to work prop under a cgroup enabled Kernel,
but first I have other stuff to do before I can start to add support for cgroups in guitarix, also I wone hear what Fons plans are for zita-convolver.
On the other hand, didn't Ubuntu already think about to disable cgroups in default installation, or at least for rt-kernels ?

Heavy times, indeed, lets hope that it comes to a surprising good solution :mrgreen:

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autostatic
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Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by autostatic »

brummer wrote:On the other hand, didn't Ubuntu already think about to disable cgroups in default installation, or at least for rt-kernels ?
Well, if I have to believe the sheer amount of comments/"this bug affects me" on the bugreport I get the idea that not that many people have an idea what it's all about. Or in the worst case nobody really cares. Or maybe I'm a bit too cynical ;)

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Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by prokoudine »

Regarding all the brummer's apps, how about a better UI for convolver? There was an interesting thread in a forum at linuxsound.ru recently, and one user pointed out that switching between IR files is not as simple as it could be and demands dealing with open file dialog every single time.

The guy then pointed at Poulin LeCab2 VST that makes it really easy: you have several units you can switch between, and for each of the units you can set a root directory with IR files. All you have to do then is just press prev/next button.

Here is what it looks like:

Image

(Sorry if the picture is too large)

You could actually make it similar to NI interfaces where there is a left pane where you switch between presets. So just instead of presets there would be a kind of file browser.

brummer

Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by brummer »

Hi

The main feature in the guitarix jconvolver settings widget is that you can trim the IR-file, and you can set a gain line on it. So, indeed, it is a settings dialogue. For fast switching the IR-files best is to save your settings in presets, those you can switch with midi commands (Program change), with numeric key's (1-9) or with picture-up / down.

Anyhow, it seems to be a good idea to replace the file-name label with a combo-box for better handling.

greats hermann

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funkmuscle
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Re: guitarix 0.12 SVN - some remarks

Post by funkmuscle »

hey brummer, same idea as what Ken was talking about from acmebargig. Poulin and Ken collaborate a lot on their VSTs.
I like the lastest svn version with the ability to choice between tubes...

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