Conserving resources

I’m looking for insights on conserving resources with a large mix in Ardour. A few specific questions:

  1. Is freeze functionality reasonably robust for most people? I tried it this morning and got a crash, but will revisit it when I get home.

  2. Do vst plugins use more resources (in general) than LADSPA? I’m finding, bit by bit, some LADSPA plugins that I like as much as some of the vst’s, and if the vst’s eat up more resources, then I will be happy to limit my use of them even further.

  3. I got the impression from comments in another thread that increasing Jack latency WON’T help free up resources in the same way we would expect it to do so in an ASIO/Windows environment. Is this true?

  4. Are there any tweaks, Jack or otherwise that can help us to maximize resources (I’m already running the ll kernel, of course).



  1. I remember it was quite buggy in the past…not sure on it’s current status, but I could never use it without a crash.

  2. Don’t know about that, however I know some plugins might not report their latency values correctly…if at all, which can cause big problems…also they are considerably less stable than ladspa and you can’t automate…so I only use them if nothing else in ladspa stacks up.

  3. It may not increase free CPU, I’m not sure, but what it WILL do is help you avoid XRUNS that come about from using up heaps of resources. I just finished working on a track that I had to increase my JACK latency before I exported or there were some audible clicks, created by XRUNS.

  4. If you are using PAM limits, you can adjust the amount of memory that is locked for Realtime use by editing the /etc/security/limits.conf file and changing the @audio - memlock to a higher value

Also, if you are using gnome or kde, then you can lighten the load by switching to xfce or e17 or fluxbox etc etc…
Check for unnecessary system services that could be running and using up resources

Also, if you have two harddrives then you should have your OS on one, and ardour session files on the other, making sure that they are both the master controllers on SEPERATE IDE/SATA interfaces.
Also make sure you’ve run hdparm and dma is enabled on the drives

OR set them up in a RAID 0 level to improve performance

Lastly if you get really desperate for a little bit more, you should google for articles about adjusting pci latency values if you have a pci audio and video card…tweaking them can improve performance if you do it right.

Great response, thanks.