Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

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RyanH
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Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by RyanH »

I'm having problems with Hydrogen 1.1.1, which came with Ubuntu Studio 22.04 LTS. The distro shipped with the development version for some reason. I'm using Hydrogen with QTractor via Jack.

When I set QTractor to Master and Hydrogen to J.Trans and press play on QTractor, Hydrogen doesn't follow QTractor - it automatically matches the tempo and starts the pattern like it should, but just plays the first beat repeatedly while QTractor rolls along normally. So there seems to be a glitch in the syncing.

I didn't have this problem with Hydrogen 1.0.0.rc1. All of my Hydrogen, Jack, and QTractor settings appear to be the same as they were when I was using the earlier version (except that this newer version doesn't have the option to enable OSC feedback, whatever that is).

I considered just installing the older version, but can't find a .deb file. Plus, when I previously installed an older version of a different piece of software, Ubuntu Studio just tried to update to the packaged version and apt wouldn't show me available updates until I let it do so.

Any suggestions on what I can do about the situation? I could sign up for a Github account to report a bug, which I don't really want to do (not averse to making the effort, but too many accounts!), but this wouldn't make the installed version work... and Ubuntu Studio wouldn't likely send out an update until the next LTS, anyhow, so I would have to compile from source when a new version comes out.

Maybe there's some setting I'm missing?

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by Impostor »

I just found this, but it's up to you if you trust it or not!

http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/pool/u ... _amd64.deb

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by Largos »

Works for me with these settings in hydrogen and qtractor set to master or full in the transport mode.

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by Linuxmusician01 »

For some reason I've always had problems getting Hydrogen to play nice with the BPM tempo I've set. Stopped using it. Curious to get to know if you'll manage to solve your problems with it. Will follow this topic.

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by Impostor »

Linuxmusician01 wrote: Sun Nov 20, 2022 2:35 pm

For some reason I've always had problems getting Hydrogen to play nice with the BPM tempo I've set.

It used to have problems with non-integer bpm, but that's supposedly fixed in 1.0.1.

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by RyanH »

Impostor wrote: Sun Nov 20, 2022 11:05 am

I just found this, but it's up to you if you trust it or not!

http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/pool/u ... _amd64.deb

Sweet, thanks! I'll have to mull over the trust vs. utility balance. I have found a solution to my issue (see below), but I still prefer the way the previous version worked, so may take you up on your offer.

Cheers.

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by RyanH »

Impostor wrote: Sun Nov 20, 2022 6:19 pm
Linuxmusician01 wrote: Sun Nov 20, 2022 2:35 pm

For some reason I've always had problems getting Hydrogen to play nice with the BPM tempo I've set.

It used to have problems with non-integer bpm, but that's supposedly fixed in 1.0.1.

I think it may be partially, but not completely fixed. I only partially understand what's going on here - enough to solve my problem, anyway.

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by RyanH »

Ok, I've solved the problem.

This new version of Hydrogen interacts with QTractor's time signature in a way the previous version didn't. Version 1.1.1 uses proper time signatures for "size," whereas 1.0.0.rc1 just used a single number. With this new implementation, the two programs need their time signatures to be set in compatible ways (but not identically, oddly enough).

I haven't explored too deeply - only enough to get back to being able to use Hydrogen to follow QTractor - but basically, if QTractor's and Hydrogen's time signatures are set such that the same type of note gets one beat, they play in sync. For example, if QTractor is set to a 3/4 time - where a quarter note gets one beat - Hydrogen will play properly even if it's set at 4/4 - which is a different time signature, but a quarter note still gets one beat.

I have been using weird time signatures in QTractor, like 2/32, to have the bar numbers line up with MIDI notes the way I want them to - basically using the time signature more to set myself visual markers rather than for normal time-signature purposes. Hydrogen can't handle these higher beat values, so now, when pairing with Hydrogen, I will set QTractor to some "normal" x/4 time signature and then set it back when I'm done.

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by Linuxmusician01 »

@RyanH: So if you simply use 4/4 in both Qtractor and Hydrogen there's never a problem?

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by Impostor »

RyanH wrote: Sun Nov 20, 2022 11:28 pm
Impostor wrote: Sun Nov 20, 2022 11:05 am

I just found this, but it's up to you if you trust it or not!

http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/pool/u ... _amd64.deb

Sweet, thanks! I'll have to mull over the trust vs. utility balance. I have found a solution to my issue (see below), but I still prefer the way the previous version worked, so may take you up on your offer.

Cheers.

You can always use firejail if you do not completely trust some piece of software. If only to deny it internet access. You'll have to trust it enough to install it though, of course! That's where appimages are useful: you don't install anything, and you can run it firejailed. Alas, there's no appimage of Hydrogen afaik.

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by Largos »

Linuxmusician01 wrote: Mon Nov 21, 2022 11:06 am

@RyanH: So if you simply use 4/4 in both Qtractor and Hydrogen there's never a problem?

If you use the same pattern size as the time signature it's fine. Where it goes wrong is these are different, in certain pairings it goes wrong.

For example, make a song in hydrogen with a 7/8 pattern. Set qtractor to 2/32. Hydrogen does not like this.

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by RyanH »

Linuxmusician01 wrote: Mon Nov 21, 2022 11:06 am

@RyanH: So if you simply use 4/4 in both Qtractor and Hydrogen there's never a problem?

Sorry, took a day away from the computer, but I echo Largos' response.

I haven't played around with it much since I solved the problem, but yes, 4/4 for both works. Also making sure you're using...

-Jack
-QTractor set to "Master" in the Transport options ("Full" might also work, as someone mentioned)
-Jack-midi as the driver in Hydrogen
-the J. Trans button turned on in Hydrogen (located next to the tempo)

No need to connect Hydrogen to anything in QjackCtl - QTractor will control the Jack clock and Hydrogen will follow it. And Hydrogen will automatically switch to whatever BPM QTractor is set to.

Last edited by RyanH on Thu Nov 24, 2022 8:00 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by RyanH »

Impostor wrote: Tue Nov 22, 2022 3:40 pm
RyanH wrote: Sun Nov 20, 2022 11:28 pm
Impostor wrote: Sun Nov 20, 2022 11:05 am

I just found this, but it's up to you if you trust it or not!

http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/pool/u ... _amd64.deb

Sweet, thanks! I'll have to mull over the trust vs. utility balance. I have found a solution to my issue (see below), but I still prefer the way the previous version worked, so may take you up on your offer.

Cheers.

You can always use firejail if you do not completely trust some piece of software. If only to deny it internet access. You'll have to trust it enough to install it though, of course! That's where appimages are useful: you don't install anything, and you can run it firejailed. Alas, there's no appimage of Hydrogen afaik.

You may have just solved a non-music-related issue I've had. There is only one piece of tax software which works natively on Linux here in Canada. It's an appimage. It works great, but I have wondered what it might be doing in the background. I know it automatically checks for updates, so have been concerned it could possibly also send sensitive info to someone other than the government.

Of course, as you said, I'd have to also trust firejail. I'll look into it. Thanks!

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by Impostor »

RyanH wrote: Thu Nov 24, 2022 7:57 am

Of course, as you said, I'd have to also trust firejail. I'll look into it. Thanks!

Firejail is in the official repo's (at least, in Mint/Ubuntu's). It comes with a lot of default profiles for programs like Firefox and such.

Creating/adjusting your own can be confusing/incomprehensible though, especially with certain profiles calling on others, and having combinations of blacklisting/whitelisting/noblacklisting/nowhitelisting and taking care of what takes precedence in any given order.

I often use it to just deny internet access with "firejail --net=none program".

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Re: Problem Syncing Hydrogen 1.1.1 to QTractor

Post by RyanH »

Impostor wrote: Thu Nov 24, 2022 9:40 am

Firejail is in the official repo's (at least, in Mint/Ubuntu's). It comes with a lot of default profiles for programs like Firefox and such.

Creating/adjusting your own can be confusing/incomprehensible though, especially with certain profiles calling on others, and having combinations of blacklisting/whitelisting/noblacklisting/nowhitelisting and taking care of what takes precedence in any given order.

I often use it to just deny internet access with "firejail --net=none program".

If it's in the repos, I would be willing to trust it. There's always some risk, but I guess that could be said about anything, really. I'll try it out and see how easy it is to just wall off that one program. If nothing else, I'll learn something new!

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