I just finished a quite big project (8 songs with ~ 50 tracks+). All the recordings were similar and recorded into different Ardour projects. Once the first song was mixed, I needed to get the same mix on the other songs as a starting point (this just make sense since a lot of instruments and processings were similar). So I thought about a couple of nice-to-have features, which could save a lot of work:
Import Mixer Strip from another project.
In the context menu of a track, “import mixer strip”, choose an Ardour project file, choose a track of this project. All processings, FXs and their settings, fader and panning, (maybe also sends) are inserted into the track. Best of the best: prompt the user if he wants the processings to be replaced or added to the track. This is in my point of view the most important feature of these 3.
I wrote an .ardour file parser in Python to get a list of all tracks and processing settings, but it is not so handy as I thought, so I started with the following workaround, which could also be a nice feature :
Full Mixer View Screenshots.
Since I could’t import the mixer strips, I started making screenshots of the mixer view, then applying the settings from one project track to the other project track (very feasible since all the nice Ardour and x42 plugins have in-strip-graphics). This just takes a lot of time. Also very annoying if the songs has a lot of tracks and they all not fit on the screen, then you must deal with different screenshots of different mixer views, this can be quite complicated and confusing (I had to gimp all my screenshots together!). Maybe even thinking further and take a screenshot automatically when a project is closed, so it is really easy to have a look to the mixer and its actual mix without opening Ardour? Or make an automatic screenshot on each export (as well as the export analysis)? The benefit could also be to give this file to the next engineer as information or as a personal archive.
Stem Export Select Visible/Soloed/Unmuted etc.
When finished, I wanted to make a stem export (I wanted to try the summing of Mixbus), but I was not possible because I just had too many tracks, also a lot of tracks not playing in the mix (muted and not visible/active, old midi tracks, old versions, etc…). New feature idea for the Stem Export Dialog: “Select Visible only”, “Select Soloed only”, “Select Unmuted only”, “Select Active only”, etc etc
So that was it! I hope I could bring some new ideas. By the way, the project I worked on was the newest Album of Superdirt² (www.superdirt.net) which will be released in september 2019 on CD and Vinyl. I attache a gimped mixer screenshot I used to apply mixer strip settings, because it just looks amazing!
All the best!