[Ardour-Users] Important test:

John Emmas johne53 at tiscali.co.uk
Sat Sep 15 03:31:49 PDT 2007

Hi Geoff,

I've endured clicks with Ardour ever since I first installed it.  I'm not
convinced it's always Ardour's fault though - in my case, I think my
graphics card is at least partly responsible.

I use quite an old - but trusty - graphics card.  However, the Linux drivers
are nowhere near the standard of the Windows ones.  For example, if I'm
playing some audio from Ardour and I simply grab a window title bar (any
window) and physically move the window on my screen, the audio output
glitches (100% repeatable).  If I open the mixer window and simply write
some automation (e.g. drag a fader with my mouse) the audio glitches (also
100% repeatable).  Strangely however, I even get glitches when simply
playing across a crossfade (about 70% repeatable).  I don't think this last
one is graphics related.

I mentioned in a recent post that there's often a conflict of interests
between product sophistication and performance.  As products like Ardour
grow in sophistication, their demands on the hardware grow similarly.
Therefore, hardware that used to run the application perfectly will
eventually start to struggle.  This is true of any product that's either
resource hungry - or processor/hardware intensive.

It's a simple fact of life that you can't design a complicated product to
run perfectly on an unlimited range of unknown hardware.  A point always
comes when you need to start specifying the minimum hardware requirements
and/or produce a hardware compatibility list.

I'm quite new to Ardour so I don't really know when that point got reached.
All I can say is that it was probably reached before I got involved.  I can
say that confidently because Ardour has never run acceptably with my
particular configuration.  Like you, I've tried many different distros
without success.

I've often been tempted to try one of the 'audio specific' distros like
64studio but I don't think it would be any better than the 7 distros I've
already tried.  If the problem is down to hardware, then a hardware
solution is the only real answer.

In your case it might not be a hardware problem but whether it is or it
isn't, Ardour (IMHO) is well past the stage of needing a 'recommended
hardware' list.



----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Geoff Beasley" <songshop at bizmedia.com.au>
To: <linux-audio-user at lists.linuxaudio.org>
Cc: <ardour-users at lists.ardour.org>
Sent: 15 September 2007 04:04
Subject: [Ardour-Users] Important test:

> Folks,  I am on something of a quest here. I have been suffering clicks in
> the
> audio stream here for sometime now.  I have changed my audio HW from 3 x
> ice1712 cards to a Firepod firewire, changed my Distro 3 times, changed
> everything I know about kernels, jack, alsa etc etc...; all to no avail.
> The
> click manifests when duplex recording from ardour back into ardour  ( or
> traverso, mhwaveedit etc... this is not ardour specific)
> So what I would like to ask is can others please carry out this simple
> test.
> Record some tone first. (you could just install  Jaaa.) Generate 20
> minutes
> of tone into 4 Ardour (or whatever) tracks. Then playback the tone whilst
> recording it back into another 4 tracks in Ardour.
> Do you see any clicks ? They sound exactly like changing an I/O point
> within
> ardour when program material is being played back.. They appear as a spike
> in
> the waveform. On closer inspection I generally see a "flat-line" between a
> broken waveform of about 70-110 samples. Sometimes it's smaller, and
> sometimes it just a typical "distrotion" of the wave itself. I always get
> them. Sometimes it goes for 3-4 minutes without one, but I always get
> them.
> Traverso doesn't get them using the alsa driver. This may or may not be
> significant. Jack is the standard way of connection here,in collaboration
> with Qjackctl, so a test with jack is what I most seek. Tone is the best
> way
> to test audio stability; i wonder how many people have tested with tone ?
> I
> hadn't for some years; when i did i was shocked at the result.
> any feedback will be most welcome
> g.
> HW: tried 32 bit Amd, 64 bit Amd, 64 bit Dual Core Amd, CCRMA, 64 Studio,
> Musix, Gentoo, alsa 1.0.13 thru 15 rc1, Jack 103,107x, Jackdmp,Ardour 2.5,
> Ardour 99.3, kernel 2.6.18,20,21,22 all the major RT,with/without
> SMP,posix,RT,vst support; have i forgotten anything ? probably. but you
> can
> bet I've tried it.
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> ardour-users at lists.ardour.org
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