Can't watch YouTube w/ Ardour Open

Using Pop_OS (Ubuntu flavor) w/ Ardour from the ardour.org site…

I have (successfully) made it thru the installs, read the "must read’ stuff, etc…

The last item on my list is to get Ardour working so that I can also watch Youtube videos or let another app use my sound card.

Having already done some googling, it appears Alsa won’t allow that. This is where I’m getting rather confused because a reddit comment(below) suggested that I switch to Jack when I open a new session. I got Jack all set up (all green in that terminal, etc), but then the default driver is Alsa.

I googled each of the options in the ‘Driver’ dropdown and wasn’t sure which, if any of those, as the right pick (Alsa is the default option).

Other suggestions online mentioned installed Cadence, but I don’t want to get into downloading a whole bunch of unnecessary shit… Thanks.

Anyone have any suggestions?

reddit comment referenced: https://www.reddit.com/r/linuxaudio/comments/9umt1m/when_i_open_ardour_youtube_video_not_working/

Your system is set up so that most/all apps default to using PulseAudio for output. JACK (and Ardour, if you use its own ALSA backend) take exclusive control of the audio hardware they are told to use.

Hence: https://ardour.org/jack-n-pulse.html

Note if you use the ALSA backend to Ardour (which we recomemnd), you can’t do this. So if you really insist on playing YT or getting message notification beeps while working on a professional non-linear, non-destructive digital audio workstation, you will need to use JACK as the backend instead.

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I gotcha. Thanks for the quick response. I have other devices I can easily use if necessary…

If you don’t need to do this concurrently, temporarily stopping the ALSA backend is an option. Menu > Window > Audio/MIDI setup.

The motivation behind requiring exclusive access to the device is to prevent other apps to change settings while recording. In particular buffersize and sample-rate. As side-effect this also prevents desktop bleeps, or other apps from blasting out on monitor-speakers.

Ardour6 will feature a pulse-audio backend for playback only. The main motivation there was to allow mixing on the road without a proper soundcard, but it can also support your requirement to watch youtube videos while mixing or mastering.

That is a good solution.
I usually use the onboard soundcard for desktop apps, and an external USB soundcard with Ardour.

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Interesting. Thanks for the additional background. I’m a bit of a noob on this side of things, but I’m a developer with a multi-instrumental background. What I really want to do is be able to use tutorials on YouTube for learning purposes (learning a ton from Unfa’s channel).

Ardour6 will feature a pulse-audio backend for playback only. The main motivation there was to allow mixing on the road without a proper soundcard, but it can also support your requirement to watch youtube videos while mixing or mastering.

Coming from a development background, my inclination is to follow best practices until I’m comfortable enough looking at the codebase to make reaasonable predictions about repurposing technology for new uses… And I’m not going to be there for a very long time yet…

I usually use the onboard soundcard for desktop apps, and an external USB soundcard with Ardour.

Thanks for this. This is a really interesting suggestion. At some point in the future, once I’m a bit further along and I am going to invest in some more equipment (right now, it’s just me and my laptop). If you’ve got any recommendations for shopping/research. Please feel free to pass on a link.

Look for documentation on the PulseAudio jack-sink plugin. You would start jackd, then load the plugin in PulseAudio and connect the output to the system outputs using whatever application you are comfortable with for making jackd connections. The system applications still send audio to Pulse as usual, and Pulse uses jackd for the backend instead of using ALSA directly.

This is also a good tutorial on the topic:

Thanks a lot, I saw you’re the project lead dev somewhere else so decided to stick with your recommendation (I’m a web dev) and actually, now I understand the reasoning because I’ve started getting slightly more irritated by notifications from other stuff while I’m coding…

My project this week has been to plow thru as much of the manual as possible. Thanks again for your good work.

Is there a particular exertal soundcard (or some minimum/optimal specs) that I should look out for if I want to migrate to something like this in the near future?

There is no easy answer… How many inputs/outputs do you want/need? Do you need microphone Inputs (phantom power, pre-amp) or just line in/out? What bus options are available (USB, PCIe, Thunderbolt,…)? What is your budget? etc.

I suggest to start a new thread on this forum, or search for existing recent ones. e.g PCIe 8-in/8-out soundcard for Linux based system, options?

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To use youtube tutorials; down load the video, convert to .wav (keeping the origial!) then import the .wav and then video - when done you can step through the video ‘a frame at a time’ for the tricky bits :slight_smile:

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