Ardour Development Update

There is a subscription called “Developing World” $1 USD per month. Can anybody subscribe with this option or why is it called that way? Different benefits?

Here are we are acutely aware that income levels vary dramatically around the world. A reasonable price in Oslo is very from a reasonable price in Bishkek. So we try to provide options that reflect the different absolute economic living conditions that people are in. We also recognize that this can be true even within a country, especially one with large disparities of income equality such as the USA.

The specific goal of the “Developing World” subscription was to target people in … the developing world. But if you honestly feel that this describes your economic situation better than the others, you should feel free to use it as well. There re no differences in what it provides access to.


Thanks a lot Paul, English is not my native language so sometimes I get lost in translation.

Ah. This sounds great, Paul, thanks for the update… I think this may address a question I have re: MTC… which I will post in another forum… looking forward to 6.0!

There is a need for a good SFZ player library released under GPL. But I am not sure that it is worth developing for SFZ from the point of view of the standard for virtual instruments. So, I think free software audio needs a format for virtual instruments developed by a community or a specific group. Regarding SFZ, I am quoting from Wikipedia: " The SFZ format isn’t maintained by a single company or group, and supported features can vary between individual synthesizers. The official page at the Cakewalk web-site is no longer available, however descriptions of the SFZ opcodes can be found on various websites.". I have a plan to develop an LV2 orchestra sample library, but I don’t think I’ll develop it against SFZ.

Perhaps SFZero (not GPL, more liberally licensed)? It was recently also included in Carla (plugin-host) as replacement to Linuxsampler’s engine (which has licensing issues due to a non-commercial clause).

Maybe. But I’ve seen that It is dependent of Juce to build and I don’t know if it is an API, also it is done in C++. Ideally these kinds of libraries (rather the API) would be nice to be in C, like FluidSynth was done for SoundFont.

All valid points. Also a library that can easily be statically linked to produce self contained plugins. fluidsynth is indeed a good example.

There is a stripped down version of JUCE included in Carla, only GPL code, removed end-user tracking, and a bit less kitchen-sinky: called “Water”:

Anyway, compared to what NI-Kontakt does, sfz seems also rather dated. Perhaps some effort to convince NI to ship native Linux versions might succeed now that there are more DAWS (Reaper, Bitwig, Ardour, Mixbus, Renoise, Tracktion, etc all run on Linux).

As @paul said, it is highly unlikely that Ardour will ever integrate a sfz player. A simple sampler perhaps, but more realistically we would bundle a 2nd or 3rd party plugin with Ardour binaries, like we do with GMSynth (if the plugins runs on all platforms that Ardour does).

That would be great! Is there a specific format that you have in mind? As for disk-streaming, playback engine perhaps you can share some code with (although their codebase is also C++)?

Thank you for the info, I’ll take a look on Carla and DrumGizmo. But I am thinking to provide a kind my own version of file format (probably in JSON or XML, or a bundle, I am not sure now) specific for the plugin in order to let users to define their new instruments. I have contacted Versilian Studios that releases the VSCO orchestra samples as a community edition under public domain, and they said I can use their samples for the plugin.

“As @paul said, it is highly unlikely that Ardour will ever integrate a sfz player”… Yes, I think it is not necessary.

Hi Paul,

I seldom have much to say – and this time too! lol Just thanks for the great work you and the team are doing. Ardour is a great DAW and although I admit I don’t use it exclusively, I do indeed use it a great deal and it is great software! Keep it up!

HISE is a GPL3 sampler built on JUCE that has the benefit of being able to injest sfz, yet create instrument plugins that are much more complex (with its own scripting), or create sample’s from scratch!

My gut feeling says the programming side of things pales in comparison to the work on recording the samples (and the cost of production thereof).

I’ve meant to develop LV2 by using samples offered by as public domain, which I see them good since I am composing with them. Yes, to record a sample library, a high quality one costs very much. I have doubts that soon we will have samples like these released under a free license.

Hi Paul it`s been 5 month since the last update news - by any chance can we get an update how far you have come regarding the planned development steps - would be a nice christmas gift ? (Version 6.0 would also be a nice gift :wink: )

kind regards

I don’t know when Ardour6 will be ready, but it’s highly unlikely that it will be before x-mas. I’m sorry.

Since we are far behind with many planned steps, we may even postpone the music-time related features for a later release in order to release an update at all. Even though it would be nice to release a version with bug-fixes and initial improvements, we have been putting that off because we do not want to break the session-format twice in a very short timespan.

Current git/master still lacks some essential parts, and all of the transport-logic and buffering is still in pieces. After that, music-time updates will realistically also take quite a while to stabilize. All in all it feels a bit like Ardour 2…3


I’m confused! Isn’t Ardour’s a-Fluid Synth an SFZ player? I use Don Allen’s ‘Timbres of Heaven’ with it and it works great! - Am I thinking of something else?

FluidSynth is an SF2 player. SFZ and SF2 are different.

Will there be a different (hopefuly) more modern GUI?
Maybe something like drag’n’drop routing? (like Reaper or Studio One).

Keep on making this great DAW. :slight_smile:

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More intermittent updates would be good, among them an updated version of FFMPEG. It is over a year since the last release and it is not responsible to have such a massive gap since some of us use Ardour for crucial work. I prefer not to have to turn to other DAW’s to get things done.

After 6.0 is out, we aim to return to a bi-montly release-cycle focusing on bug fixes and frequent releases.

The current state of major overhaul is far from usable, nor robust and the session-format is not even stabilized. There’s nothing we can release.

Ardour 5.12 is quite robust and there should be no need to update. In particular if you rely on Ardour for crucial work.

Keep in mind that the Ardour development team is on average less than 2 persons full-time. Major versions have historically been 2-5 years of development, and it’s now only just over a year since 5.12 was released.