[ardour-users] [ANN] Mackie MCU, BCF2000 and Tranzport testers wanted

Giso Grimm gg3137 at vegri.net
Sat Apr 28 07:47:40 PDT 2007


I got the possibility to play around with ardour2 and the Tranzport
controller, using ardour2-rc1 (same for rc2) from Planet CCRMA/Fedora
Core 6, and the 'libardour_tranzport.so' plugin from the archlinux
package of ardour2-rc1 (http://www.archlinux.org/) (it is not included
in the CCRMA dist).

The installation instruction in the manual did not work for me, but the
instructions from http://ardour.org/node/274 worked fine (except for the
strange double quotes created by cut-and-paste...). I like the device,
although there are some problems:

- Complete freeze of the machine: Select the 'master' bus on the
Tranzport device, and then go one more track to the left. Sometimes the
crash only occurs after repeating this some times. Running a
non-RT-kernel has same problem. I was running ardour/jack without root
privileges (although with full access to usb-device and RT-privileges).
rc1 and rc2.

- The last track/bus cannot be selected.

- The link breaks down after some buttons pressed or after quickly
turning the shuttle wheel. It takes about 10 seconds to recover the

- After a button was pressed the device is not accepting input for about
0.5 seconds.

Except for these bugs it works fine. The mapping was somewhat different
to that described in the manual. "record-enable all tracks" (shift-rec)
is a good feature, but I was not able to find the opposite. And 200% is
not to fast for ffwd/rew, but this is probably a matter of taste.
Switching of the displayed time mode is desirable (bars/beats make no
sense in recording sessions without metronome feedback...).

Is it possible to compile the libardour_tranzport plugin without
compiling ardour? I would be happy to have a deeper look into the
source, but was not able to compile ardour2 on my system (probably
inconsistent gcc-versions in some libraries), and found
tranzport-related code at more than one place in the repository.

Thanks to all developers of ardour!


John Anderson wrote:
> Hi everyone
> We've just merged code for Mackie MCU surfaces and new Tranzport code
> into the trunk for ardour2. It's available on svn right now, and will be
> in beta-12.
> Tranzport
> ---------
> The tranzport control surface driver now has increased modularity and
> slightly more advanced support for metering. For detailed instructions:
> http://www.ardour.org/files/manual/sn-frontier-design-tranzport.html
> Mackie & BCF2000
> ----------------
> If you're a BCF2000 user and you're wondering if this is worthwhile,
> here's the answer: no clicking on GUI controls and doing the midi-map
> thing; bank switching for as many tracks as you have in your session; no
> futzing with custom presets (apologies to all those who have, with great
> success, engaged in said futzing).
> To enable support for the Mackie and the BCF2000 in Logic Control
> emulation, add the following line to ardour.rc:
> 	<MIDI-port tag="mcu" device="/dev/snd/midiC2D0" type="alsa/raw" mode="duplex"/>
> obviously your device= may be different. Alternatively you may have
> success with an alsa/sequencer port, but I haven't tried that lately.
> Note that the driver looks for a port with tag="mcu".
> And of course you'll need to put your bcf into Logic Control emulation
> mode:
> http://www.behringerdownload.de/BCF2000/BCF2000_Emulation_modes.pdf
> The code was developed using a Behringer BCF2000 in Logic Control
> emulation. So it has a 7-channel mode for the bcf, where the right-hand
> strip acts as master channel, and there are some changes to the button
> mappings. To enable bcf mode, add the following line to ardour.rc,
> inside the <Config> tag:
> 	<Option name="mackie-emulation" value="bcf"/>
> The Mackie MCU should work "out of the box", except that:
> - certain buttons (the ones not on a BCF ;-) aren't yet implemented
> - the shuttle wheel has only preliminary support (because in bcf mode
> the master channel pot aspires to be a shuttle wheel)
> - The displays aren't yet implemented.
> If you own an MCU, and are willing to recompile ardour from svn, we
> could really use your help with getting these implemented.
> Known Issues
> ------------
> - for non-mono tracks and busses, pan pots don't work
> - surface doesn't activate when a session is closed and another is
> loaded. Shut down and start up ardour to work around this.
> - busses lose their remote ids across a save and reload
> - shuttle wheel with transport rolling doesn't work properly
> bye
> John

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