Need a free SoundFont player

On my Linux machine, I had the Calf FluidSynth player that would let me have a piano on MIDI ch.1, bassoon on 2, violins a.s.o. but it’s Linux only. For Mac, I found the SFZero that promises to enable me to do the same thing but it won’t show up, maybe because I’m using 10.6.8 (no requirements listed on the website). I’ve been trying to find information on what earlier versions might work but to no avail. Anyone know a good one? Thanks in advance (and later on, too)

So do I have to go back to Linux in order to get that stuff to work? I have no problem with Linux but it forces me to buy two new computers and I hoped I could get along with buying just one new Macbook pro …

Ardour Intel works on OSX 10.6 or later. Ardour PPC on 10.5 and 10.6 (the last powerPC OSX version).

After installing new Audio Units: Preferences > Plugins > Scan also check Window > Log for any messages after scanning.
If you compile the plugin yourself and you don’t compile it as universal binary, the architecture of the plugin (32/64bit) must match the one of Ardour.

After installing new Audio Units: Preferences > Plugins > Scan
This did the trick! Thank you!! I didn’t have to do this with any of the other plugins that I have …

Forgive me please if this is another stupid question but I tried sforzando which is a plugin and it changes my soundfonts into some cheesy sounding thing, not the good sounds that I got from Calf. Now I found another one called “Simple Synth”
and it sounds good but it’s a standalone program. How can I get Ardour to “talk” to it? If it were a plugin I’d know how to get it to play my MIDI tracks from Ardour. I probably haven’t found the right pages on the net to teach me how to connect these two.

So this is how far I got …
I was wrong about Fluid Synth being Linux-only, I downloaded its source code via “Homebrew”. To install it, I needed to download XCode and compile Fluidsynth. Got some errors but I don’t get the lingo - first: some problem with AppleUSBEthernetHost.kext that I googled and found out it has something to do with iTunes. Decided to carry on. Second: “Download failed:” which sounds a lot more dangerous but what do I do about it?
I downloaded QSynth and setting it up, it found FluidSynth and showed all the right instruments in the right slots! So something must have gone right after all although I don’t know how much since I don’t know how to test this setup now. Can I have QSynth show up in Ardour, like, as plugin in a MIDI track? Or is there some other way?
Help needed!

QSynth, last time I looked, was not a plugin. It is a standalone instrument that actually uses the FluidSynth plugin as its engine.

I would advise against attempting to build open source software yourself on OS X. If it isn’t available, and you don’t feel quite competent at this sort of thing, I would personally recommend that you either try to find somebody else to build it, or consider that software currently unusable on OS X.

No paul, QSynth is not a plugin, I know that. Do you know of any plugin that will play .sf2 files in Ardour? I realize I must’ve misunderstood something, maybe I’ve been looking for answers in the wrong places.

I had exactly the same experience with that. You can compile and use calf without UI using my homebrew formula ( but unfortunately calf fluidsynth does not have and control for changing a soundfont on its generic UI. I already raised a ticked about that (
At least this will be useful for playing back your existing files.