Install Ardour on Linux Mint 21 Cinnamon - Tips and Tricks

When installing Ardour on Linux Mint 21 I need some time to eliminate a few issues. Therefore, here is my tutorial for you on how to quickly install Ardour on Mint 21 Cinnamon.

After download the .run file here is the guide to install Ardour

After the Installtion there came a warning:

 "!!! WARNING !!! - Your system seems to use frequency scaling"

That means, that Linux Mint throttles the cpu.

Solution: Download and install the CPUPower_Gui from the Application Manager and set it e.g. from “Powersave” to “Performance”. If not, you could be performance issues with Ardour.

Bildschirmfoto vom 2022-11-12 20-04-35

In my case it was enough to switch to Performance. You can adjust the min frequence up if it’s not enough on your system. Try it out. On every new boot you have to adjust it (at the moment i don’t know how to make this as permanent default, but for office working the default value is maybe good - so i make it manually, when i run Ardour).

Using Jack

First, i use Ardour under ALSA and all is fine. Its runnung without Jack, simply select ALSA and your interface.
BTW: Steinberg UR824 don’t work with Linux. I bought Behringer U-Phoria - that works fine (all models, buy how many ins and outs you need).

If you want to use some Apps who use Jack, you need to setup Jack. Or if you want use Ardour and e.g. playing music over Audacious, you need also Jack.

Jack is virtual plugin tool to connect your sound-in to sound-out. You find many articles over that in the internet, but i don’t find a proper manual with the actual gui - here is it:

First, got to user and groups and put yourself in the audio group by clicking right in the group field

Download QJackctl from your application manager of Linux Mint

QJackctl - Bedienfel

Setup: Interface (soundcard), sample rate and frames what you want to use in Ardour.

under “Miscellaneous” → take out the Replace Connections with Graph button

Start Jack (with the Play Button)
QJackctl - Bedienfel

Click now to Connect / Verbindungen (bottom left button)
Qjackctl - Verbindungen

After that you can start Ardour and switch in the audio settings Jack. If before ALSA was in, you can start Ardour bevor starting Jack and stop the audio connections. In my case i hat Audacious running.
Note: Firefox (playing Youtube videos) can not displayed over Jack.

Useful Plugins
For Sounds you have a build in ACE Fluid Synth - a SF2 Soundfont player. And a general midi synth. And many other plugins Ardour comes with.

I searched for additional Stuff and here are my results after long searching and testing:

First: Here is the place to install plugins:

Additional for VST3s:
Linux VST3 Plugins i installed here (according to the vst path /usr/lib/lxvst i made this directory): usr/lib/lxvst3
Some Plugins use this path (Plugins you download the .dep file for installing over doublecklick): /usr/lib/vst3

Usefull (for me) Effekts:
Ubuntustudio Audio plugins (the plugins from Ubuntu Studio Distribution)
install: sudo apt-get install ubuntustudio-audio-plugins
Note: There are a huge collection of Plugins - a few are not running, is not the problem, because you have so many, and the best are running

LoudMax – Maximizer

Dragonfly Reverbs

Only VST2 Plugins work

Speedrum Lite - Drum Sampler (i buy the big brother from him the next days)
VST2 works only proper!.
Path: /usr/lib/lxvst/Speedrum_lite/
(VST3 makes not multi outs)

Redux - Sampler (fantastic sampler - the best i found in 1 week research)

Path: /usr/lib/lxvst/renoise_redux_x86_64/renoise_redux.res

Tal-Sampler (also good, needs a bit more performance as the Redux, but not the problem - i desided to use the Redux)

Surge - Synthesizer

Only VST3 works, LV2 not.

I hope i helped many user here a bit to have fast a great studio so that the users who use Linux for music productions become more and more.

Greetings, Party-DJ Stefan (Germany)


Vielen danke! Documenting the bits you have learned while getting up to speed is a great way to contribute.

Some additional things to sounds. I searched a lot about this things, and if all new user find here the solution, it makes it easier to get started with Ardour.

With Ardour SF2 and SFZ Sound can used (many you find free to download in the internet).
SF2 - can directly played with the ACE Fluid Synth (Ardour Plugin).
SFZ files can played with Sfizz or open and played with e. g. Redux (Sampler)

Conert: With Polyphone (in my Linux Mint 21 Application Manager) you can convert SF2, SFArk oder SFZ to e.g. SF2 or SFZ file.
Short Tutorial: Soundfonts 4U - Customizing Your SoundFont

Here a great list for download SF2, SFZ etc files.

BTW: SFPack und SFList Files you can convert with SFPack (Windows - free)

So in the end, you can with this tools all convert to an SFZ Sound, and if you want load in a sampler like Redux and adjust something.

In addition, there are a large number of freely-available sample libraries available on the PianoBook site for the free-as-in-beer DecentSampler plugin.

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Here is a tip for virtual guitar racks:
For Metal productsions the “Metal” and for normal things the “GFX” run in Ardour as VST2 plugins on my Linux Mint 21 Cinnamon - plug and play via .deb installation file.
(the VST3 not at the moment, but i sent the information to the developer - so maybe in the next time it works also as VST3)

Thanks to @ardourwlk for his tip: Search Sound Rom Player and Guitar Rack as Plugin under Linux - #2 by ardourwlk

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Now talk about Sounds
I think the switch from e.g. Cubase to Ardour makes on the first step (in my case) hard work to find sounds. Cubase is a plug an play software where Halion or Groove Agent comes with 1000 of Sounds.

As i startet with Ardour i need about 1 Week to search and download SF2 and SFZ Files

Downloa Sounds here for a fast and nice start with Ardour

My idea today was, to contribute Ardour user in this case of Sounds.
Here on my own Cloud, you find now over 1400 sounds. And i add over time more. (i’ve downloaded about 100GB on Sounds, but first i have to sort them).

All Packages have a SF2 Sound Package (1 file with more sounds) and i extracted all as single SF2 Files and also converted as SFZ files. I use the Redux Sampler who can import SFZ Files (and export too).

Upload your best Sounds here:
If anyone here wants to share his sounds too, you can do it easily: Upload your Sounds as .7z (best compression) or as .zip as a package up to my cloud. And i can move it in the download section.
Upload SF2, SFZ or .xrni (Redux Sampler) files for sharing. I have here over 1 TB space

My workflow: I sort single SF2 in my sound directory used for Ardour. Sounds i would like to change i load it as SFZ file in Redux.

BTW SF2 files can played in Ardour (for new user) the “ACE Fluid Synth” in Ardour. SFZ files, can played by sfizz

If new use search a great Drum Sampler: Speedrum is my recommendation.

Hope that helps new user for a fast switch from Windows to Linux and a fast producing with Ardour.
Greetings Stefan Franz - Party-DJ-Stefan