December 11, 2018

Linux – CDM Create Digital Music

Bitwig Studio 2.5 beta arrives with features inspired by the community

We’re coasting to the end of 2018, but Bitwig has managed to squeeze in Studio 2.5, with feature the company says were inspired by or directly requested by users.

The most interesting of these adds some interactive arrangement features to clip launching. Clip Blocks add Next Action capability to individual clips, for interactively generating arrangements.

What’s different about Clip Blocks – versus something like Live’s Follow Actions, or the basic timeline interactions in more linear DAWs – is the ability to freely group sets of clips together as sections. You leave a free slot between a group of clips to make a section, which promises to make arrangement more improvisatory. So with this slot free, for instance:

You get a ton of different actions, which you can apply to the whole block and not just individual slots:

I’m going to have to play around with this some more. (Especially since I initially misread the press release and described this totally wrong.) That interaction also strikes me as useful not only for musical situations but performance/theater/dance/radio applications where you might want non-linearity.

Also in this release:

“Audio Slide” lets you slide audio inside clips without leaving the arranger. That’s possible in many other DAWs, but it’s definitely a welcome addition in Bitwig Studio – especially because an audio clip can contain multiple audio events, which isn’t necessarily possible elsewhere.

Note FX Selector lets you sweep through multiple layers of MIDI effects. We’ve seen something like this before, too, but this implementation is really nice.

There’s also a new set of 60 Sampler presets with hundreds of full-frequency waveforms – looks great for building up instruments. (This makes me ready to boot into Linux with Bitwig, too, where I don’t necessarily have my full plug-in library at my disposal.)

Other improvements:

  • Browser results by relevance
  • Faster plug-in scanning
  • 50 more functions accessible as user-definable key commands

Go check out the release, and if you’re a Bitwig user, you can immediately try out the beta. Let us know what you think and how those Clip Blocks impact your creative process. (Or share what you make!)

Just please – no EDM tabla. (I think that moment sent a chill of terror down my spine in the demo video.)

Correction: I initially wrote that Clip Blocks work in linear arrangement. That’s not correct; they’re for clip launching only.

PS – you may want to check out the Sampler features from the last update, too! Here’s a tip on getting multisampling going:

The post Bitwig Studio 2.5 beta arrives with features inspired by the community appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

by Peter Kirn at December 11, 2018 01:37 PM

December 07, 2018

Qtractor 0.9.3 - The End of Autumn'18 Release


Qtractor 0.9.3 (end-of-autumn'18 beta) is out!

All the changes that were simply decrastinated for this season are as follows:

  • Auto-backward now skips the end-of-session location.
  • Audio clip time-stretching and pitch-shifting limits are now 10-fold in either direction.
  • Custom color (palette) theme editor introduced; color (palette) theme changes are now effective immediately, except on default.
  • Old deprecated Qt4 build support is no more.
  • Recover audio and MIDI dedicated port connections when changing any of the Metronome, Player and/or Control option settings.
  • Fix MIDI track (and bus) bank/program reset to none.
  • Anti-glitch micro-fade-in is disabled on audio clips with zero offset.
  • Audio and MIDI file players also stopped on Transport / Panic command.
  • LV2 plug-in UI GTK2 and X11 in Qt5 host native support are now disabled on default configure.
  • Get rid of symlink duplicates on the default plugin search paths.
  • According to Debian policy and guidelines, the out-of process plugin scanner (qtractor_plugin_scan) is now installed to $LIBDIR/qtractor.


Qtractor is an audio/MIDI multi-track sequencer application written in C++ with the Qt framework. Target platform is Linux, where the Jack Audio Connection Kit (JACK) for audio and the Advanced Linux Sound Architecture (ALSA) for MIDI are the main infrastructures to evolve as a fairly-featured Linux desktop audio workstation GUI, specially dedicated to the personal home-studio.


Project page:


Git repos:

Wiki (help wanted!):


Qtractor is free, open-source Linux Audio software, distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL) version 2 or later.

Enjoy && Keep the fun.

Donate to

by rncbc at December 07, 2018 07:00 PM

December 06, 2018

Qsampler 0.5.3 - An(other) End of Autumn'18 Release

Hello again,

No more excuses left: please upgrade!

Qsampler 0.5.3 (end-of-autumn'18) is out!

Qsampler is a LinuxSampler GUI front-end application written in C++ around the Qt framework using Qt Designer.


Project page:


Git repos:


  • Avoid saving plug-in sampler channels and related devices to regular LSCP (*.lscp) session files.
  • Fixed MIDI and Audio device selection on the common sampler channel settings dialog.
  • Old deprecated Qt4 build support is no more.
  • AppStream metadata updated to be the most compliant with latest specification and recommendation.


Qsampler is free, open-source Linux Audio software, distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL) version 2 or later.

Enjoy && have fun!

Donate to

by rncbc at December 06, 2018 07:00 PM

December 04, 2018

digital audio hacks – Hackaday

High-End Headphones Get Flexible Boom Upgrade

It seems a reasonable assumption that anyone who’d be willing to spend a few hundred dollars on a pair of headphones is probably the type of person who has a passion for high quality audio. That, or they work for the government. We’re fairly sure [Daniel Harari] falls into that former category though, given how much thought he gave to adding a decent microphone to his Sennheiser HD650 headphones.

Not happy with the results he got from microphones clipped to his shirt or mounted on a stand, [Daniel] realized what he really wanted was a sensitive boom microphone. This would be close enough to his mouth that it wouldn’t pick up stray noises, but at the same time not obstruct his field of view or otherwise get in the way.

He found a few options on the market which would allow him to mount a boom microphone to his HD650’s, but he didn’t want to stick anything to them and risk scratching the finish so those weren’t really an option. [Daniel] decided to go the DIY route, and eventually settled on a microphone that would mount to the headphone’s existing connector which plugs in at the bottom of the cup.

To make his mount, he 3D printed a two piece clamp that could be screwed together and securely attach to the connector without making any permanent changes. Once he had that base component printed, he salvaged the flexible metallic neck from a cheap USB light and used that to hold the female 3.5mm connector. Into that he’s plugged in a small commercially available microphone that is usually used on voice recorders, which [Daniel] said sounds much better than even the larger mics he had tested.

Finally, he used Sugru to encapsulate the wires and create a flexible strain relief. The whole assembly is very light, easily movable, and perhaps most importantly, didn’t require any modifications or damage to a pair of headphones which have a retail price that could double as a car payment.

It’s been a few years since we’ve seen anyone brave enough to hack their pricey Sennheiser headphones. But in the past we covered a modification which gave them an infusion of Bluetooth and even one that reversed a sneaky manufacturer hardware limitation.

by Tom Nardi at December 04, 2018 09:00 PM

November 22, 2018

digital audio hacks – Hackaday

Battery Swap Keeps Sansa Clip+ Chugging

You’d be forgiven for not realizing there’s still a diehard group of people out there carrying around dedicated MP3 players. While they were all the rage a decade or so back, most consumers have since moved over to using their handy dandy pocket supercomputer for playing their music. Plus controlling every other aspect of their personal life and finances, of course. Though that’s another story entirely.

But as [Conno Brooks] explained to us, there’s a sizable group of open source fanatics who prefer to store their jams on devices running the Rockbox firmware. Only problem is, some of the desirable Rockbox-compatible players are from the Golden Age of dedicated players, and aren’t getting any younger. In a recent blog post, he briefly goes over his ultimately successful attempt to put a new-made battery into his Sansa Clip+, a particularly desirable player that was released in 2009.

There are a few problems with the procedure that has kept it from being very widespread, according to [Conno]. For one, the Sansa Clip+ is tiny and not easily disassembled without destroying it. Worse, the diminutive 30mm x 36mm x 3mm OEM battery is effectively unobtainium. But ironically he was able to find an even smaller battery which seemed like it should work, assuming he could get it wired up.

The OEM battery on the Clip+ uses three wires, which [Conno] presumed was part of some thermal protection system. He first tried to take the circuit board off the original dead battery and graft it onto the modern cell, but something must have tripped because the resulting Franken-pack didn’t output any voltage. On his second attempt he simply ignored the third wire, and luckily the Clip+ didn’t seem to complain and started up as expected.

[Conno] says there’s some careful flexing required to get the new pack installed and the Clip+ closed properly, and the device’s runtime is somewhat diminished by the new battery’s lower capacity. But if it means another few years of keeping Big Brother out of your digital media habits, he figures it’s a worthy trade.

We’ve actually seen a few hacks now for the Sansa Clip line of players at this point, thanks to its second lease on life as an open source darling; from a slightly less stock-looking battery replacement, to adding a line-in option. When you get sick of listening to Hanson’s discography, you can even boot up what is perhaps the world’s worst port of DOOM.

by Tom Nardi at November 22, 2018 12:00 AM

November 06, 2018


Notstandskomitee Paris concert video

nearly complete video of the recent Notstandskomitee concert in Paris 25. October 2018

by herrsteiner ( at November 06, 2018 09:29 PM

October 27, 2018

KXStudio News

Carla 2.0 RC2 is here!

Hello everyone, this is the announcement for a Carla stable update.
Only 2 blocking issues remain, 1 of which needs testing to see if it still happens or not.

General fixes

  • Fix build against fludisynth 2.0
  • Fix build on Haiku OS
  • Fix build with external plugins enabled but no OpenGL available
  • Fix detection of old Windows dll plugins
  • Fix dynamic/split process cycle for plugin bridges
  • Fix internal plugins receiving wrong frame position on split buffers
  • Fix program changes coming through as bank changes in MIDI output
  • Fix a possible race condition in plugin code
  • Fix some warnings triggered by gcc-8
  • Fix LV2 plugins with UI feedback ports in bridge mode not receiving feedback events
  • Fix macOS specific note visible in settings when not running macOS
  • libjack: Fix applications that register clients right after being started

Usability fixes

  • Always show keyboard in plugin edit dialog if plugin has midi inputs
  • Always expand user home path (~/) when loading project from CLI
  • Don't try to find binary type of certain plugins when loading project (avoid assertions)
  • Use executable basename on jack apps as name when initial name is empty
  • libjack: Catch window close when possible, and hide it instead closing entire application
  • libjack: Implement basic session management via SIGUSR1 signal


To download Carla binaries or source code, jump on over to the KXStudio downloads section.
If you're using the KXStudio repositories, you can simply install "carla-git" (plus "carla-lv2" and "carla-vst" if you're so inclined).
Bug reports and feature requests are welcome! Jump on over to the Carla's Github project page for those.


Work for KXStudio 18.04 ISO is under way, should only take a few more weeks now.
Next JACK2 release will be quite nice, we we have meta-data now (thanks to Rui), but that will be handled after KXStudio 18.04 ISO release.

by falkTX at October 27, 2018 10:37 PM

October 23, 2018


new Notstandskomitee album and concert in Paris

The french label Serendip Lab releases the next album by Notstandskomitee, called Release Candidate, digital download and on cassette tape. It is the first tape by Notstandskomitee in 24 years since the split cassette Kassettentäter with De Fabriek. The new album contains 13 new tracks produced between 2010 and 2018, some tracks can already be listened to on bandcamp, where the preorder for the pending release is open:

To celebrate the release, Notstandskomitee plays a concert in Paris on October 25. during the Festival Serendip Lab 2018 held at Cirque Électrique:

by herrsteiner ( at October 23, 2018 10:51 PM

October 18, 2018

News – Ubuntu Studio

Ubuntu Studio 18.10 Released

The Ubuntu Studio team is pleased to announce the release of Ubuntu Studio 18.10 “Cosmic Cuttlefish”. As a regular release, this version of Ubuntu Studio will be supported for 9 months. Since it’s just out, you may experience some issues, so you might want to wait a bit before upgrading. Please see the release notes […]

by eeickmeyer at October 18, 2018 05:45 PM

October 09, 2018

GStreamer News

GStreamer Conference 2018: Talks Abstracts and Speakers Biographies now available

The GStreamer Conference team is pleased to announce that talk abstracts and speaker biographies are now available for this year's lineup of talks and speakers, covering again an exciting range of topics!

The GStreamer Conference 2018 will take place on 25-26 October 2018 in Edinburgh (Scotland) just after the Embedded Linux Conference Europe (ELCE).

Details about the conference and how to register can be found on the conference website.

This year's topics and speakers:

Lightning Talks:

  • gst-mfx, gst-msdk and the Intel Media SDK: an update (provisional title)
    Haihao Xiang, Intel
  • Improved flexibility and stability in GStreamer V4L2 support
    Nicolas Dufresne, Collabora
  • GstQTOverlay
    Carlos Aguero, RidgeRun
  • Documenting GStreamer
    Mathieu Duponchelle, Centricular
  • GstCUDA
    Jose Jimenez-Chavarria, RidgeRun
  • GstWebRTCBin in the real world
    Mathieu Duponchelle, Centricular
  • Servo and GStreamer
    Víctor Jáquez, Igalia
  • Interoperability between GStreamer and DirectShow
    Stéphane Cerveau, Fluendo
  • Interoperability between GStreamer and FFMPEG
    Marek Olejnik, Fluendo
  • Encrypted Media Extensions with GStreamer in WebKit
    Xabier Rodríguez Calvar, Igalia
  • DataChannels in GstWebRTC
    Matthew Waters, Centricular
  • Me TV – a journey from C and Xine to Rust and GStreamer, via D
    Russel Winder
  • GStreamer pipeline on webOS OSE
    Jimmy Ohn (온용진), LG Electronics
  • ...and many more
  • ...
  • Submit your lightning talk now!

Many thanks to our sponsors, Collabora, Pexip, Igalia, Fluendo, Facebook, Centricular and Zeiss, without whom the conference would not be possible in this form. And to Ubicast who will be recording the talks again.

Considering becoming a sponsor? Please check out our sponsor brief.

We hope to see you all in Edinburgh in October! Don't forget to register!

October 09, 2018 01:30 PM

October 02, 2018

GStreamer News

GStreamer 1.14.4 stable bug fix release

The GStreamer team is pleased to announce another bug fix release in the stable 1.14 release series of your favourite cross-platform multimedia framework!

This release only contains bugfixes and it should be safe to update from 1.14.x.

See /releases/1.14/ for the details.

Binaries for Android, iOS, Mac OS X and Windows will be available shortly.

Download tarballs directly here: gstreamer, gst-plugins-base, gst-plugins-good, gst-plugins-ugly, gst-plugins-bad, gst-libav, gst-rtsp-server, gst-python, gst-editing-services, gst-validate, gstreamer-sharp, gstreamer-vaapi, or gst-omx.

October 02, 2018 11:30 PM

October 01, 2018

Ardour Web Forum Migration

@x42 wrote:

12 years ago the Ardour Forum was launched and there have been little to none infrastructure updates since.
12 years of Ardour online community.
12 years of web-evolution!

Brace yourself, because we have opted to perform a long overdue modernization and migrate the forum to!

The most significant changes compared the previous forum are: support for dynamic notifications, a flat front-page with context and the page-less layout. Just keep scrolling down.

That barely scratches the surface though. There is plenty to discover and we hope you’ll feel right at home here with us!

However, we will leave you with some nostalgia from time to time:

  • User-accounts remain at This includes
    • Sign-on and password management
    • Download purchases, donation and subscriptions

All forum posts and comments have been migrated. You can even find the very first post of the then “The New Ardour Website” from early 2006 here :slight_smile:

There are certainly some loose-ends to be tied up to complete the migration. If you find some dangling links, or please don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments. You’re also more than welcome to leave feedback about this site, its organization and how we could improve it in the Feedback Section.

Let the discourse begin!

Posts: 19

Participants: 12

Read full topic

by @x42 Robin Gareus at October 01, 2018 02:16 PM

September 28, 2018

News – Ubuntu Studio

Ubuntu Studio 18.10 (Cosmic Cuttlefish) Beta released

The Ubuntu Studio team is pleased to announce the final beta release of Ubuntu Studio 18.10 Cosmic Cuttlefish. While this beta is reasonably free of any showstopper CD build or installer bugs, you may find some bugs within. This image is, however, reasonably representative of what you will find when Ubuntu Studio 18.10 is released […]

by eeickmeyer at September 28, 2018 05:09 AM

September 26, 2018

open-source – CDM Create Digital Music

Powerful SURGE synth for Mac and Windows is now free

Vember Audio’s Surge synth could be an ideal choice for an older machine or a tight budget – with deep modulation and loads of wavetables, now free and open source.

And that really means open source: Surge gets a GPL v3 license, which could also make this the basis of other projects.

People are asking for this a lot – “just open source it.” But that can be a lot of work, often prohibitively so. So it’s impressive to see source code dumped on GitHub.

And Surge is a deep synth, even if last updated in 2008. You get an intensive modulation architecture, nearly 200 wavetables, and a bunch of effects (including vocoder and rotary speaker). Plus it’s already 64-bit, so even though it’s a decade old, it’ll play reasonably nicely on newer machines.

Inside the modulation engine.



Synthesis method: Subtractive hybrid
Each patch contain two ‘scenes’ which are separate instances of the entire synthesis engine (except effects) that can be used for layering or split patches.
Quick category-based patch-browser
Future proof, comes as both a 32 & 64-bit VST plugin (Windows PC)
Universal Binary for both VST and AU (Mac)

Factory sounds

1010 patches
183 wavetables


3 oscillators/voice
8 versatile oscillator algorithms: Classic, Sine, Wavetable, Window, FM2, FM3, S/H Noise and Audio-input
The classic oscillator is a morphable pulse/saw/dualsaw oscillator with a sub-oscillator and self-sync.
The FM2/FM3 oscillators consists of a 1 carrier with 2/3 modulators and various options.
Most algorithms (except FM2, FM3, Sine and Audio-input) offer up to 16-voice unison at the oscillator level.
Oscillator FM/ringmodulation
Most oscillator algorithms (except FM2/FM3) are strictly band-limited yet still cover the entire audible spectrum, delivering a clear punchy yet clean sound.
Noise generator with variable spectrum.


Two filter-units with arrangeable in 8 different configurations
Feedback loop (number of variations inside the parenthesis)
Available filter-algorithms: LP12 (3), LP24 (3), LP24L (1-4 poles), HP12 (3), HP24 (3), BP (4), Notch (2), Comb (4), S&H
Filters can self-oscillate (with excitation) and respond amazingly fast to cutoff frequency changes.
Waveshaper (5 shapes)


12 LFO-units available to each voice (6 are running on each voice and 6 are shared for the scene)
DAHDSR envelope generators on every LFO-unit
7 deformable LFO-waveforms + 1 drawable/stepsequencer waveform
LFO1 allows envelope retriggering when used as stepsequencer
Extremely fast and flexible modulation routing. Almost every continuous parameter can be modulated.


8 effect units arranged as 2 inserts/scene, 2 sends and 2 master effects
10 top-quality algorithms: Delay, Reverb, Chorus, Phaser, EQ, Distortion, Conditioner (EQ, stereo-image control & limiter), Rotary speaker, Frequency shifter, Vocoder

Via Synthtopia.

The post Powerful SURGE synth for Mac and Windows is now free appeared first on CDM Create Digital Music.

by Peter Kirn at September 26, 2018 04:05 PM

September 17, 2018

KXStudio News

Carla 2.0 RC1 is here!

Hello again everyone, and surprise, the stable 2.0 version of Carla is coming!

This is the announcement of the first release candidate of Carla 2.0.
Very little features were added, focus went on stability instead.
The 'master' branch on Carla's source code is now for stable content, all new stuff will go to 'develop'.
My intention is to really let Carla on the side for now. If I can do it or not remains to be seen...

The list of changes is a little big, so let's split it by parts.
First, the highlights and major changes.

Highlights and major changes

LinuxSampler removed, replaced by SFZero

Basically I removed the code that interacted internally with LinuxSampler, and replaced it by SFZero.
There are a lot of reasons for this change, but we can resume it to 3 points:

  • LinuxSampler API being overcomplicated
  • SFZ handling not very reliable
  • Licensing issues

Removing LinuxSampler means we lose support for GIG files, also SFZero loads the entire kit in RAM.
But, in return, SFZ files now always load without getting muted or having to do dirty workarounds.
Plus, with this, Carla can keep SFZ support while maintaining its GPLv2 license intact.

Note that SFZero does not support some opcodes, so the playback might sound different.
At a later date, a release will be made that will focus on SFZ support.

Big windows fixes

Carla under Windows has always a been a bit behind, compared to its Linux and macOS support.
Not anymore!

Carla can now run as a plugin in Windows, and also the PyQt-based big-meter, midi-pattern and notes plugins.
With this done, Carla as LV2 is now included in the Windows builds.

The export of a single plugin as LV2, though it is an experimental feature, now also works on Windows.
Because Windows does not handle symlinks very well, Carla copies its resources instead.

Scanning plugins will no longer show a console window.
The font engine was changed from native to freetype, which not only fixes the mini-canvas but gives a better presentation too.
Plugin bridges work once again, and now even better as Carla now initializes Windows resources on them (like static pthread and OLE).

UI changes

The piano-keyboard widget got some attention, now has 4 different highlight colors, 3 input layouts (qwerty, qwertz and azerty) and allows to change the offset when using the PC keyboard to send notes.
Just right-click on a piano-keyboard widget to trigger these options.

The rack looks a bit different now, as the possible "skins" for the plugin slots are now exposed and can be changed at any time.
You can change the background color too. Because why not? :)

The knobs and rack buttons are now more white-theme friendly.
This was needed to get white backgrounds working correctly, so for those of you that prefer Carla in a more bright theme, it will behave better now (why would you do that though?)

Other changes

Some changes that make sense or are useful enough, and that deserve to be mentioned.

  • Allow control output parameters to go out of bounds, thus displaying the correct value
  • Automatically restart plugin bridges when plugin is re-activated, using last saved state
  • Don't allow to disable jack transport if running in multi-client mode
  • Don't close and re-open VST plugin UIs on show/hide
  • Don't change any engine settings if it currently running
  • Don't list lv2 plugins that are not supported
  • Don't make Windows or macOS plugin UIs resizable for now
  • Implement loop-mode for audio-file plugin, turn it on by default
  • Implement support for buffer size changes in RtAudio JACK driver, and ignore JACK sample rate mismatch
  • Implement SF3 support (SF2 files with OGG audio files instead of raw WAV)
  • Force fftw thread-safe mode when starting Carla as standalone
  • Plugins with more than 2 audio ports can now be loaded in rack mode (the extra ports are just ignored)
  • Save and restore BPM with a project
  • Save and restore last used BPM, if not loading a project


Besides the ones already mentioned for Windows, we also have:

  • Big push to get transport working correctly
  • General fixes against dynamic buffer sizes
  • Several fixes to UI size and UI bridges under macOS
  • Fix all PNGs that triggered libpng warnings
  • Fix canvas rubberband being invisible after a canvas refresh
  • Fix embedded UI covering window controls under certain hosts (in a Qt5 Linux build)
  • Fix switching plugin positions in plugin mode

Notes for developers and packagers

  • Base python scripts are no longer installed in dist-packages
  • Carla front-end code was moved to its own folder
  • FluidSynth version 1.1.7 is now required for soundfont support
  • UI bridges can now be started from CLI with just the plugin URI
  • New CarlaNativePlugin header and library exported, exposes Carla's Rack and Patchbay internals to 3rd party applications

Currently work-in-progress is a complete REST API of Carla's backend, allowing to have full control of a remote Carla instance.
(and not in a limited fashion like done with Carla-Control / OSC).
Initial code for it is already done, and tested to work.
If this interests you, let me know!

Notes for users

The code for scanning plugins had a little rework, making some internal data structures change.
Because of this, a full rescan of your plugins is needed after the update.

When running Patchbay mode in JACK, changing the buffer size might cause a crash.
This is not a common action to do, so not a priority to fix.


To download Carla binaries or source code, jump on over to the KXStudio downloads section.
If you're using the KXStudio repositories, you can simply install "carla-git" (plus "carla-lv2" and "carla-vst" if you're so inclined).
Bug reports and feature requests are welcome! Jump on over to the Carla's Github project page for those.


With Carla done, next up is DPF handling and KXStudio 18.04 ISO release, while trying to get a new JACK2 release out too.
Note that after these 3 items are done, I plan to take a well-needed break from open-source project maintenance.

by falkTX at September 17, 2018 05:58 AM

August 30, 2018

Audio – Stefan Westerfeld's blog

SpectMorph 0.4.1 released

A new version of SpectMorph, my audio morphing software, is now available on Besides Linux and Windows, it now also runs on  macOS (>= 10.9).

In order to simplify the installation under Linux, the required instrument data for SpectMorph no longer needs to be downloaded seperately. Instead, the source tarball and Ubuntu packages include the instrument data (the other platforms already do this by default, too).

We added recordings of Claudia – a female opera singer – as new instrument (“Claudia Ah”, “Claudia Oh”, “Claudia Ih”). A few improvements to the instrument building tools were made along the way. To get good results from Claudia’s recordings, we had to add an algorithm that systematically reduces vibrato automatically.

As always, a few minor problems were fixed, for instance the VST plugin automation now works properly with Cubase. A detailed list of changes is available here.

The video for my presentation at Linux Audio Conf 2018 about how SpectMorph implements morphing is now available.

Finally, a new piece of music created by Sven and me with SpectMorph has been completed: Clicking.

by stw at August 30, 2018 12:55 PM

August 21, 2018

Audio – Stefan Westerfeld's blog

Beast 0.12 Release

Beast 0.12 is available from the Beast Homepage. Beast is an Free and Open Source Linux DAW for composing music with the integrated modular synthesis environment. A detailed list of changes is available in the Release Notes.

From the announce mail on the BEAST List:

This release removes the Rapicorn dependency as well as the runtime dependency on CPython. To achieve that, a number of utilities from Rapicorn has to be integrated, which has made the code base a fair bit larger:

651 files changed, 75581 insertions(+), 44596 deletions(-)

Most notably, this is the first release that installs the new ebeast UI. Tracks, piano rolls and dB meters are already displayed, but not much beyond that as it’s still in pre-alpha stage. However it’s a good showcase for our future UI direction, you can start it and take a quick look with:


by stw at August 21, 2018 11:19 AM

August 14, 2018

Talk Unafraid

Mapping Electromagnetic Field

This is part blog post, part prelude and part documentation.

At Electromagnetic Field (EMFCamp, being held later this month) I will be giving a talk on mobile mapping technologies, what the current state of the art looks like, precise location and some open source tools. We use mobile mapping and some of the tools I’ll discuss at my work, Gigaclear, to survey large areas of the rural UK for our fibre-to-the-home network build, which is how I’ve been able to wrangle a quick drive around the EMFCamp site at Eastnor from the survey vehicle.

That vehicle is equipped with fairly standard mobile mapping hardware, using a Ladybug5 camera for panoramic 30MP images (which I can’t distribute for privacy reasons) and a Riegl VUX-1HA scanner for LiDAR scanning. The Riegl captures 1 million points each second and rotates its scan head 250 times every second.

Words of caution and apology

LiDAR data is sometimes a pain to work with. Even with the best kit in the world, and a bunch of time spent processing, without control points and lots of manual marrying up of points in overlapping passes of the scanner, there’s noise and variation in the output. This isn’t a project that Gigaclear have done in our usual manner – I’ve had no such time in preparing this in my evenings, and so this dataset is presented as a “best effort” dataset, likely riddled with all sorts of errors and inaccuracies that we wouldn’t usually accept and which professional users will, rightly, sneer at!

In absolute terms the x/y accuracy of this dataset is pretty good, and an upper bound of 5cm RMS error from OSGB36 (the British National Grid) can be expected throughout most of the scan. Within the scanner output the accuracy is around 3mm between points – but only within the same pass. This dataset contains multiple overlapping and automatically aligned passes (you can see these as point source ID in the LAS file), and so there are some errors and anomalies. On top of this, the colour in this dataset comes from the overlaying of images on the points, using a calibration file and alignment – and I know the alignment I used wasn’t great. And the drivers didn’t go down the middle of the campsite, so there’s a bit of a void there. So, expectations set!

Sensible scale

Often, very dense point clouds can be counterproductive. In the case of our initial dataset there were over 1 billion points returned. Most of the subsequent processing was done on this dataset, thinned to a 5mm grid (still about a billion points). This dataset is about 32 gigabytes and is a real pain to work with.

Intensity view – the infrared brightness of the reflection from the laser

What I’m publishing here is therefore a reduced dataset; it is the same dataset, thinned using simple decimation (taking 1 in every 10 points), making it about 3.2 gigabytes in size and containing 92 million points – something that will fit in RAM on most modern PCs. In terms of detail, it’s still pretty fantastic for many uses. It’s a LAS 1.4 file, georeferenced to the UK National Grid (OSTN15 flavour, for those who care) with some fairly imprecise classifications, raw intensity and RGB data per point.

RGB colours – taking photo data and laying it onto the point cloud

This data can be post-processed for your needs, desires and interest. If you’ve never worked with LiDAR data before, CloudCompare is a great tool to start with – you’ll need the alpha version for liblas LAS 1.4 support. If you fancy generating rasters or generating filtered versions of the data (or writing your own Python code to work with it) then PDAL is a great tool.

Hillshade maps are easily produced by asking PDAL to write a GeoTIFF with the Z dimension

… interesting stuff, right?

If you do think this sort of stuff is downright fascinating from a technology standpoint, I’ll be doing a talk on the underlying technology at EMFcamp, whenever the schedule computer deems it so. Come along and find out more!

I’m personally really excited to see what comes of giving a gathering like EMFcamp this sort of data, and I’ve already heard some great ideas – let me know what you make with it!

And if you fancy a job working on software that works with this sort of stuff, and solving similar interesting problems in the geospatial world, drop me a line or check our website.

The Data!

Eastnor Deer Park – LAS 1.4 – Version 1, 1:10 Decimated – 3.2GB – Download here

This dataset is also available for online consumption here, but if you’re going to do anything interesting or serve it to many people please don’t do it off this server. The online version was produced with PotreeConverter and uses the excellent Potree web based renderer.

As the creator of this dataset, I license this dataset under a Creative Commons BY-SA license. The dataset may be used for any purpose, so long as it is attributed in some way and any derivative works are shared alike.

Creative Commons License
Eastnor Park LiDAR Survey is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

by James Harrison at August 14, 2018 08:05 PM

July 24, 2018


FAUST Conf + Luppp 1.2!

Hey All,

You may have seen the posts about IFC ’18, which was a great event! Lots of discussions about FAUST, about using FAUST and generally just making FAUST even more awesome than it already is. As you know OpenAV is working on the Ctlra device library – and there is some good progress being made with Mappa / Ctlra integration and FAUST. Exciting things to come to fruition soon in this area!

An apart from that, the 1.2 release of Luppp is just finished! There’s an email on the way to Linux Audio Announce etc already, @Packagers work your magic!

Stay tuned – lots of things happening just under the surface – and they’re about to start landing and becoming really cool! Chat soon, -Harry of OpenAV

by Harry at July 24, 2018 10:25 PM

July 23, 2018 - LAD

Sratom 0.6.2

sratom 0.6.2 has been released. Sratom is a library for serialising LV2 atoms to/from RDF, particularly the Turtle syntax. For more information, see


  • Various minor code cleanups

by drobilla at July 23, 2018 12:48 AM