[Ardour-Dev] waveform display for master track

Patrick Shirkey pshirkey at boosthardware.com
Thu Nov 20 19:24:02 PST 2008

torbenh at gmx.de wrote:
> On Thu, Nov 20, 2008 at 07:52:46AM +0200, Quentin Harley wrote:
>> Patrick Shirkey wrote:
>>> Wolfgang Woehl wrote:
>>>> Patrick Shirkey:
>>>>> To save space the waveform could be exported as 8bit/mono which
>>>>> should give enough info to build the peakfiles and display the
>>>>> complete waveform.
>>>> Except it wouldn't.
>>> I don't see why a track saved in 8 bit mono wouldn't provide enough data 
>>> to generate a peakfile for use as a quick reference. Can you give more 
>>> details on why you feel this wouldn't work?
>> Your master display will need to be in stereo, unless you never work in 
>> stereo.  2nd, actively converting 32 float into 8bit all the time would 
>> take even more processing power than just using the 32bit float masterbuss 
>> output.  Maths becomes involved.  Every time you change something if will 
>> have to use a custom audio engin, not written yet to sense the changes 
>> (with effects) and print it to the 8bit file, using the 32bit to 8bit 
>> converter.
>> I may be old fashioned, but it all seems a bit much, just to be able to see 
>> a waveform that may or may not be accurate.
>> If this is to be implemented, it needs to have minimal impact in the 
>> current engin.

Thanks for taking the time to think about this concept

> well... i think anything which does not involve a second audio engine
> running in the background (in the same thread) would be ok.
I'm not sure. Now that I have been told to effectively stuff it I'm 
thinking of making the feature ludicrously damaging and wasteful just 
for the hell of it. In fact I would really like to waste years of my 
life working on a completely unneccessary and long winded approach to 
this idea and take lots of crap from people every time I mention 
anything else on a public mailing list again.   <=== it's a lame attempt 
at sarcasm btw

> another solution just came to my mind.
> this might actually be feasible. (and might be useful in other senses
> also)
> how about a separate export command ?
> ie non GUI non jack ardour-export
> you save a snapshot, and then:
> ardour-export <snapshot> <outputs>
> runs in background as a separate process, 
> i dont see much sense in reducing bitrate etc.
I'm not attached to the idea. It was just a thought.

> but having the export run in background is a very noble goal actually ;)

This is the crux of the feature. Everything else is cosmetic.

Does anyone care to weigh in on how difficult it would be to put in 
place? It may have already been said but I'm dead serious about making 
this feature happen so unless I'm told that is is completely unwanted 
and unnecessary I plan to forge ahead with it and pay for any assistance 
that may be needed to get it finished.

If I am required to make an up front donation in order to secure the 
brain power needed to harness the execution of the concept then I will 
do so.

> this still does not tackle the problem with, only render the changes,
> but its getting us somewhere.
This sounds like a reasonable way of creating the backend functionality 
to make the feature possible. It's basically what I was proposing but it 
seems that some people like to jump at my suggestions with the angle 
that I'm a crazy looney so this thread has moved all over the place in 
the past few days.


Patrick Shirkey
Boost Hardware Ltd.

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