How can I use my sound card with Ardour?

I have an external sound card, which I’ve verified is connected to my computer with lsusb:

Bus 001 Device 002: ID 1235:8205 Focusrite-Novation Scarlett Solo USB

However, when I try to run any complicated virtual instrument, my CPU usage skyrockets and the instrument starts skipping.

This makes me believe that Ardour isn’t using my external soundcard for real-time signal processing.

How can I make Ardour use my external soundcard for signal processing?

What Buffer-size are you using? (Ardour > Menu > Window > Audio/MIDI Setup)?
With USB devices try at least 256 (@ 48KHz), most systems require special tuning to go below that.

You cannot. The soundcard is used for I/O only.

It is not possible to outsource arbitrary DSP. Some soundcards have built-in effects (for direct monitoring), some have programmable gate-arrays, but this only works with a fixed set of usually proprietary effects.

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Thanks for the reply!

My buffer size is 1024.

I seem to have had the wrong idea about sound cards. I remember Pro Tools or some other massive DAW I used a few years ago going out of its way to make sure I had a sound card before launching so I assumed they provided some acceleration.

Might just be a bug in the instrument then.

Pro Tools used to be bundled with audio hardware made by avid. “Bundled” in the meaning of “license is paid with the outrageous price for the hardware” so Pro Tools just won’t run without the audio card it came with. Which you probably lost and totally forgot about it or left at your aunt’s studio or your dog ate…

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