Ardour 2.8.12 released (with support for OS X Lion)

After a year in which Ardour 2 has seen little focused development due to the work on Ardour 3, the release of OS X Lion finally created the motivation to consolidate the accumulation of patches and improvements and release 2.8.12. The list of changes is suprisingly long for something supposedly in maintainance-only mode, and its a good list. The most important changes are probably Lion support, the arrival of binary packages for Linux (these should run on any Linux system, with no dependencies on your existing system libraries), and major fixes to the way Ardour handles latency and the alignment of newly recorded material.

Please note that Ardour now requires the latest JACK latency API which can be found in JACK1 0.120.2 or JACK2 1.9.7 (on OS X, JackOSX 0.88) or any later versions. Using Ardour 2.8.12 with older versions of JACK will lead to random crashes and generally bad behaviour. There's no reason not to upgrade JACK if you haven't already done so.

New Features or Behaviour and workflow improvements

  • OS X Lion Support
  • Linux binary packages (for all versions of Linux on x86 or x86_64 processors)
  • Correctly align newly recorded material on the timeline
  • OS X: double-click on a session file opens Ardour
  • reinstate "merge files" in import dialog so that 2 mono files can be imported as a stereo track
  • Forces new tempo and meter markers to start a new bar on the first beat
  • Changes to automation data recording
    • No longer decide automation control point visibility based on zoom level
    • Remove unnecessary control points in automation data as it is recorded
    • Allow timecode to skip forwards or backwards or even loop while recording automation (data is only recorded during forward playback)
  • Add a second Delete action, so both Backspace and Delete can be bound to delete. this is really useful on macbooks which have a backspace but no delete key. to turn on this behavior, users will have to add the new editor-alternate-delete action to theri bindings, OR go to Preferences->Mouse/Key and re-load one of the default bindings files
  • New route groups are turned "on" at creation
  • F4 is bound to the real separate action, not the Separate sub-menu (ergnomic bindings only)
  • Remove some rhythm ferret options that are not implemented in A2
  • Change order of range menu so more common operations are nearer the top

Crash Fixes

  • Fix crash when two overlapped regions are selected
  • Fixes crashes when playhead is moved if fader automation is on the 'write' setting
  • Symptom-fix for an issue with bogus crossfades. Avoids crashes though it doesn't fix the underlying problem.

Bug Fixes

  • Fix misbehaviour when freewheeling due to Ardour's own export
  • Change the way we use "physical screen height" to better account for multi-monitor setups
  • Make sequence-files option for import use file timecode, make all import/embed ops use per-file TC if timecode was requested, rather than just the first file's TC
  • Fix occasional deafening noise at region cut points
  • Fix management of fade in/out active management
  • Restore text to the editor canvas on big-endian machines (OS X PPC)
  • Don't try to call "render" on AU plugins with no input elements
  • Some Mackie-emulation systems (e.g. euphonix) send zero for the tick count when the jog wheel is moved, so accomodate this by pretending that they reported 1 tick
  • Save/restore environment as needed when forking external apps like JACK
  • Fix possible drift out of sync of tracks during varispeed
  • Don't adjust session end location when any region end is moved.
  • LV2 UI parameter now handled by the GUI thread, not just the same thread that the update happened
  • Prevent ardour from ever, EVER, EVAH removing an existing source file
  • Make sure declicking fades reach their target
  • Fix Insert Region From List and Fill Range with Selected Region
  • Add support for AudioUnit parameter listening
  • Make timefx thread sleep for a bit after its done, so that the GUI can process its requests before it dies and takes it request buffer with it
  • Fix old issue where copy-pasting a range selection from region(s), each region would inherit the parents full fade-in or -out even when the region excerpt didnt include the fade
  • Fixes for gcc 4.6
  • Do not try to silence port buffers after a reconnect, since this violates old JACK policy and new JACK implementation
  • Fix reallocation of silent, passthru and send buffers, specifically after a reconnect to JACK
  • Fix cut-n-paste typo that caused Session::send_buffers to be the wrong size
  • Commit patch from colinf to just err, rather than abort, if ::truncate_start() is called on an empty automation list
  • Fixed bug where embedded sources did not correctly obey the BWF time stamp and would import at the timestamp of the first file
  • When importing sources that are using sample rate conversion, the BWF start time has to be converted also
  • Fix bug that prevented fade-ins from being restored in an inactive state
  • Remove almost all use of Glib::ustring to avoid issues with non-Latin characters in file names on some versions of OS X
  • Do not attempt to lookup sndfile constants/enums using a string, because this breaks when using anything but english
  • Allow correct restoration of Lock Edit mode


  • New Basque translation from Maider Likona and friends

Contributions to this release from: Carl Hetherington, Ben Loftis, Todd Naugle, Colin Fletcher, the Basque translation team and Paul Davis

I just might forego my camping trip this weekend.

I’m mixing right now! Works perfectly! Thank you, guys!!

Maybe it’s a good plan to update the front page, it still says 2.8.11…
Like to try it out, but got no money at the moment…

I’ve had this problem before, just forget how to fix it: Open a project I last saved on another machine with previous version of Ardour, all the waveform images appear to be clips…

@iamdooser: what are the two machines in question, in terms of: what OS and what processor?

10.5.? PowerPC (where it was originally saved)
10.7.1 core i7

They playback fine; it’s just that with those images it’s distracting…will be difficult when I have to detailed edits.

@iamdooser: you need to remove all the peakfiles in the session folder and they will be rebuilt. The peakfiles are not portable across different “endian” processors (like PPC and Intel). To remove them, open up Applications -> Utilities -> Terminal and type: rm /path/to/your/session/peaks/* substituting for /path/to/your/session appropriately. Next time you open the session with Ardour they will be rebuilt, but depending on the session size it could take a very long time.

No need to do it in the terminal, you can do it via finder as well by simply navigating to the session folder and deleting the contents of the peaks directory.


Nonsense, that’s just modern mastering. :wink:

Upon upgrading, certain plugins no longer work - Most notably Steve Harris’s SC4 plugin, which previously only worked when an SC1 plugin was also used in the same project, but now does not function at all. Is this a bug in Ardour, a bug in the plugins, or am I simply doing something wrong?

Most likely a bug in the plugin that was emphasized by changes in Ardour, but hard to say without more work diagnosing it.


I’ve never had SC4 work smoothly, even with an SC1 used alongside it.

@paul righto. thanks! I’d forgotten that’s how it’s done.

If I’m using Ardour 2 from svn, does that mean I have whatever is included in 2.8.12?

If it is a recent SVN build, yes most likely.


Cool, thanks. I run system updates once a month, and Ardour usually gets recompiled.