Noise Gate

I have paid for Ardour over the years, and finally am trying to do some work beyond just using it for its multitrack features. I do not know and can’t figure out the technique for noise-gating. Audacity has access to such a plugin, but it appears Ardour 5.5 doesn’t pay attention to LADSPA ones (only scans for vst and au). Any help for what must be completely obvious would be greatly appreciated.

Since you mention AU, I assume you’re using Ardour on OSX or MacOS.

Are the LADSPA plugins installed in /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA or ~/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA?
Does the architecture match? 64bit Ardour, 64bit (or universal binary) LADSPA plugin?

Ardour does load LV2 and LADSPA plugins on all platforms, but LADSPA has been superseded by LADSPA Version 2 (LV2) almost a decade ago and the only free LADSPA plugins that I know of which were ported to OSX are swh’s

A universal binary of those can be found at (May 2014)
These plugins have also meanwhile also moved on to LV2:

I use kxstudio repository to get plugins. When I type in “Gate” in Ardour’s Plugin Manager, it gives me a list of LV2, LADSPA & LXVST gate-plugins:

(be sure, the search filter buttons are not activated)

Missed “au”, sorry. My reply for linux users…

Sorry, yeah Mac OSX, thought I posted to that forum, but it now isn’t clear which forum this post is in.

x42, thanks for confirming how LADSPA plugins are to be installed. I did the system level library, and then my account library. The architecture of the plugins are universal. See below.

Unless there is some trick I’m missing, I think that it is time for ProTools or something else turnkey. Ardour/MacOSX isn’t surviving usage with my band mates breathing down my neck. If I can throw money at some standard commercial plug-in library, pointers super appreciated. I can’t continue looking through several year old plugin review sites to not find a simple noise gate.

Model Name: Mac Pro
Model Identifier: MacPro5,1
Processor Name: 6-Core Intel Xeon
Processor Speed: 3.33 GHz

macpro2010:lv2-master randrews$ ls -l /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/
-rwxr-xr-x@ 1 randrews staff 49828 Mar 4 2013 /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/
macpro2010:lv2-master randrews$ ls -l ~/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/
-rwxr-xr-x@ 1 randrews staff 49828 Dec 27 12:15 /Users/randrews/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/
macpro2010:lv2-master randrews$ file /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/
/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/ Mach-O universal binary with 2 architectures
/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/ (for architecture ppc): Mach-O bundle ppc
/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/ (for architecture i386): Mach-O bundle i386
macpro2010:lv2-master randrews$ file ~/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/
/Users/randrews/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/ Mach-O universal binary with 2 architectures
/Users/randrews/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/ (for architecture ppc): Mach-O bundle ppc
/Users/randrews/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/LADSPA/ (for architecture i386): Mach-O bundle i386

As a last ditch, I tried to build lv2, and of course immediately ran into dependency problems. I’ll try and figure out what fftw3 is, and see if I can find the dev headers and libs. Also need to know the source for pkg-config.

macpro2010:lv2-master randrews$ sudo make install-system
clang -Wall -Wno-unused-variable -Wno-self-assign -I. -Iinclude -O3 -fomit-frame-pointer -funroll-loops -DFFTW3 -arch x86_64 -ffast-math -msse -fno-common util/blo.c -c -o util/blo.o
clang -Wall -Wno-unused-variable -Wno-self-assign -I. -Iinclude -O3 -fomit-frame-pointer -funroll-loops -DFFTW3 -arch x86_64 -ffast-math -msse -fno-common util/iir.c -c -o util/iir.o
clang -Wall -Wno-unused-variable -Wno-self-assign -I. -Iinclude -O3 -fomit-frame-pointer -funroll-loops -DFFTW3 -arch x86_64 -ffast-math -msse -fno-common util/db.c -c -o util/db.o
clang -Wall -Wno-unused-variable -Wno-self-assign -I. -Iinclude -O3 -fomit-frame-pointer -funroll-loops -DFFTW3 -arch x86_64 -ffast-math -msse -fno-common util/rms.c -c -o util/rms.o
clang -Wall -Wno-unused-variable -Wno-self-assign -I. -Iinclude -O3 -fomit-frame-pointer -funroll-loops -DFFTW3 -arch x86_64 -ffast-math -msse -fno-common pkg-config fftw3f --cflags util/pitchscale.c -c -o util/pitchscale.o
/bin/sh: pkg-config: command not found
In file included from util/pitchscale.c:42:
util/pitchscale.h:4:10: fatal error: ‘fftw3.h’ file not found
#include <fftw3.h>
1 error generated.

If you want something turnkey, don’t bother with LADSPA plugins. ProTools or Logic Pro won’t help there either, you’ll also need some 3rd party plugin(s). I suggest to search the web for “AU gate plugin”… or VST.

Note that ppc & i386 are only 32bit versions (not 64bit which is x86_64). That would explain what you’re seeing if you use 64bit Ardour.

To compile them yourself, a couple of build-dependencies are required (as you found out: fftw from and some further tweaks afterward (apple’s install_name_tool to make the plugins self-contained). As-is, make install only works properly on GNU/Linux for the swh plugins. It took me a couple of hours to compile and bundle the linke back in the day (those are universal 32 bit ppc, 32bit intel, 64bit intel: 3 archs) but upstream wasn’t interested.

One option for a freeware noise gate for Mac:

And just noticed those plugins are 32-bit only… Sorry.

For the record, turnkey based on Ardour I would suggest looking at Mixbus with the plugins Harrison puts out especially. On top of that for a gate specifically in the past i have used the WaveARTS MRGate. But these of course assume paying isn’t an issue as these options aren’t always cheap.

In as far as building things on OS X, as you already found out cross platform builds aren’t always easy.