[ardour-users] Terrible pain with Jamin

Marukqs marukas at hardcore.lt
Tue Oct 25 12:11:50 PDT 2005


Today it was a debut with my new band on one of the biggest local TV (there
are only 3 000 000 people in my country, so it is not comparable with MTV).

I made my first record with open source products only, but I am still not
happy with the result. 

I play pop rock music (something similar to TM Revolution but more rock) so
I use many synths for beat, etc. 

My PC is Fedora Core 4, Athlon +3000, 512RAM, 7200rpms ReiserFS disk.

The hardest part now is mastering (it kills me as applications crash and
crash all the time), so I want your advices and opinions on my workflow:

1) create some basic beats and synth bass lines

Thanks god I have a drum machine with 4 outputs and CS1X synthesizer, so
they reduce CPU overload a little. My soundcard has only 2 inputs it's
M-Audio Audiophile 2496

When I use a sequencer I need to sync it with ardour. Rosegarden default
note lengths and segment editing completely suck (especially Copy/Paste
annoyances as it is impossible to Paste at the start of the measure easily).

And I cannot get into seq24 as it is does not work like regular STANDARD
sequencers like Cakewalk and Cubase.

Muse has some troubles too:
f.e. fast snare notes are not played in equal intervals for bigger jack
buffers - the smaller jack buffer is the notes are more precise. So when I
work with muse I MUST set jack latency at least 1ms, cause with 5ms latency
I get 16th length snare sounds like
t-da-ta-ta-ta-ta-ta-ta-t-da-ta-tda-ta-ta-ta, but not

Muse does not allow to select bassdrum or snare in a drum track and move it
to another track - this is quite painful when I want to record bassdrum,
snare and hihats separately.

Again - segment stuff in Muse kills me too, but it is works better than in

2) create ardour project and record the drums to separate tracks - this is
3) record guitars, bass and vocals - this is easy too

and now comes the hardest part:

4) do the first mixdown.


I need to restart jack with higher latency so the applications do not crash
as I use many LADSPA plugins.

I start Jamin and then problems appear:

Jamin is terrible slow. I have 512 RAM and it is all busy. It seems that for
this reason CPU usage jumps to 99%. 

The sound in ardour dissapear - JAMIN multiband compressor dies. I have to
restart JAMIN - so I need to close Ardour session (or else Master Output
will be disconnected from Jamin), close Jamin, start Jamin, open the session

Ardour starts to behave very strange - X windows does not respond to
keyboard or mouse, NumLock key does not swithces LED on the keyboard - so It
means extremely heavy CPU usage.

Today I restarted the computer 5-6 times for this reason.

5) burn cds to band members and producers and wait for their opinions - this
is easy

6) change rythm, change some fills, add some synth effects, change synth

I need to change JACK parameters to get 1ms latency to play notes in Muse
without drifting. 

I start Muse.

I cant listen to the voice, guitars and the MIDI synths at the same time as
LADSPA plugins take too much CPU and with 1ms they kill either JACK, Ardour
or Muse applications. 

So I must create a new ardour project and record synths separately and then
export them to WAVs:

Change JACK latency to higher value (f.e. 5ms), open ardour project with
voices and guitars, delete synth tracks from it, import WAVs with a new
synth lines and then drag them to a synth track in ardour project.


It sounds like a suicide. 

How can I make my system stable, CPU load MAXIMUM 50%?

I hate closing and opening applications all the time - is there any stable
as an atomic clock sequencer so the drums sound like a real techno and which
stability is not dependent on JACK.



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