Magnetic/snap to in timeline


(Sub) #1

I have tried searching and think I have found the answer, but still want to verify:

Am I right in assuming that Ardour can only snap to a pre-determined grid and not to other objects in the timeline?

I am not a composer, and I will not use Ardour for mixing music. I will use Ardour to edit audio for video, radio and ambience recordings.

This means cutting, splitting, moving segments around. So it would help a lot to be able to park the play head and snap to it or snap to other segments in the timeline.

Sorry if this has been answered somewhere else. It is sometimes difficult to search when you are not a native English speaker.


(Paul Davis) #2

The list of grid objects is presented in the grid dropdown. It includes many different sub-divisions of the beat, of clock time, and also includes the beginning, end or boundaries of regions, which are “other objects on the timline”. You can’t snap to automation or notes. Note that people get very confused by one thing: if there is a selected track, then the beginning/end/bounds of regions applies ONLY to regions in the selected track.

Moving the playhead to region boundaries can be done completely independently of tthe grid.


(Sub) #3

Sorry - a very late response due to various life events :slight_smile:

Yes, it feels a little confusing as I am coming from a TV/video/broadcasting world.

I am not used to snapping to regions - live recordings of audio do not have regions or beats. So I am used to programs that snap to:

Beginning or end of a piece of audio in the timeline
In-point or out-point
Beginning of timeline
Play-marker

For the first two, I am used to snapping to selected track, or if no track is selected, snapping to all tracks.

I am also used to be able to use a modifier key (ALT) - by holding it down while moving something, the end of it will snap to the points.

I understand that Ardour is mainly meant for music production. But the need for good tools for non-music material is definitely there.

OBS! I am in no way demanding any change or features. I know the program is developed with limited funds and that there is a logic behind it. I am just explaining my background.


(Xherbie) #4

Why don’t you create markers on the timeline and after that use the snap to markers function to align with the markers?


(Sub) #5

So, your suggestion is that for every start and end of a segment in the timeline (there may be hundreds depending on the project) I should create a marker? :slight_smile:

I understand your suggestion, just saying it is not practical at all. Software like this is supposed to make things easier.

Ardour has support for video projects. And bringing in a documentary or other big video project could mean a timeline with a lot of tracks and literally more than a thousand segments in the timeline.

It is really valuable to be able to have a segment that you are moving snap to any kind of point in the timeline without having to add markers or change snap mode.

I already see two use cases where the workflow and methods would be a little different than your usual music project:

1 - Video/film
2 - Radio/podcasts

Especially for the second category, it is a lot about simplifying things.

Again - this is in now way a demand. Just a friendly suggestion that as Ardour is already such a fantastic tool, why not make it easier for new groups to use it? That might as well help get more funding.

Podcasting is on the rise, and they could use a good open-source tool that works better than Audacity :slight_smile:


(Paul Davis) #6

I believe that the behavior you want is already implemented in our development version (and also in the current release of Mixbus, which for once is “ahead” of Ardour in terms of releasing new stuff).


(Sub) #7

Ooh!! THAT is interesting!!

Is the development version ok to run and play with?

Do you have any indication when this development version will be stable?


(Paul Davis) #8

We do not recommend anyone use the development version for any purpose other than testing out specific features, and even that will likely follow some personal interaction on IRC or similar.

We never release timetables for development plans, because we never keep them. It has already been more than a year since a release, which is way longer than anticipated, and the end to basic architectural changes is still not in sight.


(Paul Davis) #9

You could, however, test it out in the current release of Mixbus.