JJazzlab sound distortion when Ardour is open

JJazzlab 4.0.2 (JJazzLab) is backing software which bundles Fluidsynth. If I run it (on AV Linux 23.1) the output plays fine. However, once I open Ardour (AVL’s bundled 8.2.5), the sound from JJL becomes distorted, as if it’s being played through a cotton-wool cushion. Close Ardour, and it plays normally again. Any suggestions on what might be causing this? Seems odd.

Maybe you’re running JJazzlab directly to the audio output and through Ardour and to the output?
If that’s the case you just need to remove the direct connection.

Or it’s a sample rate mismatch somewhere.

Thanks. I’m not actually connecting JJL and Ardour at all (the JJL objects in Pipewire are the two at the top, and one is connected to the output (Scarlett 2i2), but nowhere else.

Exhaustively trying all options:
(a) Keeping the default bundled Fluidsynth as the sound source in JJL:
Open JJL - plays fine.
Open Ardour. JJL plays fuzzy.
Play something in Ardour. JJL plays fuzzy.
(b) Close Ardour - JJL sound option dialogue freezes until you open Ardour again (!).
(c) Switch JJL sound source from Fluidsynth to the builtin Java synth:
JJL plays fine (thought the transports show a delay in having an effect).
Open Ardour. JJL plays fine.
(d) Close Ardour - this time the JJL sound option dialogue doesn’t freeze.
(e) Switch JJL sound source from Java synth to a virtual MIDI port:
Open Qsynth - Pipewire automatically makes a connection between the virtual MIDI port and the Fluidsynth engine.
JJL plays fine - no problems with the delayed transport either.
Open Ardour. JJL plays fine.

So it seems to be an issue with the bundled Fluidsynth - a sample rate mismatch, as you say? Though I can’t see anywhere to change that in JJL.
Anyway, the two workarounds seem to be:
(i) To use the bundled Fluidsynth (better instrument matches), keep Ardour closed.
(ii) If you need Ardour open, use Qsynth and a virtual MIDI port.

OMG! After that, I subscribed and installed the new Ardour 8.6, and the issue no longer exists! The bundled Fluidsynth in JJL plays fine, with or without Ardour open. Ah, those hard-working devs have solved it!

Sorry for the wasted bandwidth…

I’m glad you got it figured out and thank you very much for subscribing to Ardour. Much of the goal of AVL is to give people a proper introduction to Ardour (and Mixbus) and to provide a fully working supported version (thanks to @paul) so people get a positive first impression and then purchase or subscribe for upgraded versions to continue to support the great work that the devs are doing here.

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AVL, especially the new version, is a very neat distro, and reflects the years of work you’ve put into it. I’d recommend AVL to anyone looking to get a solid foundation for exploring audio in Linux (me, for instance!).

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