OSX plugin suite to share sessions with Linux

I’ve managed to encourage a collaborator to move to mixbus or ardour so we can share projects. The problem is she uses a Mac and I use Linux. I want to be able to work on her projects using the same plugins she uses for now. Which plugins might be good?

Probably only really after a half decent, eq, reverb, delay, compressor. The Calf plugins have a pretty intuitive interface for beginners are they, or something similar available on OSX. I think a simple interface will really help. The built in ardour plugins are great, but not very easy to use if you don’t have a firm grasp on the basics (all because of the interface… or lack thereof!)

The aim is actually to teach her how to use a DAW to record her own demos, so the ability to share session files to see what she’s been up to and offer advice would be great. We’ve been trying with logic for ages, but I don’t have a mac or logic at home so that makes things a little more tricky. Last time I recorded her she was asking about Ardour which I was using and we’ve decided to give it a go, but if we were both able to use the same plugins (at least initially) that would be great.

So… any good cross platform plugin recommendations?

(also she has very little money, so the mixbus plugins are great, but quite pricey, so probably not a great choice in this particular case)

@bdp: OvertoneDSP plugins are nice and have recently reestablished linux support. They are commercial but a bit less pricey than Mixbus plugins it seems.

@dsreyes1014: Ooh, thanks for the reminder I have a few of the original linuxdsp plugins. the 500 series compressor and Eq find their way onto most channels, they sound great (the compressor even works well on the mixbus at times). I’m also quite a fan of the Black EQ so would be quite happy to upgrade to their replacement graphical/parametric EQ if it has full cross platform support.

Good call.

Still interested in any free plugins anyone knows of any good cross platform ones.

:frowning: the 500 series still hasn’t got linux support… shame really fancied updating to try the G Series dynamics plugin.

I might just suggest Mixbus + Harrison plugin essentials bundle + Overtone AF-210. That should give everything needed for now and comes in at under £200, not as cheap as I was hoping, but still pretty good! My only issue with this is the awkward interface for Mixbus on a small screen.

@bdp: I’m using the 500 series plugins now on Linux. I believe it’s still supported, maybe they just haven’t updated the webpage.

One possibility: ZAM Plugins (http://www.zamaudio.com/?p=976): LV2 for Linux and Mac, $25 bundle. I’ve never used them, but they include a limiter, EQ, compressor, gate, saturator, delay, and others. The interfaces seem pretty simple to work with.

..I just noticed OvertoneDSP updated their page with full linux support on all available plugins..
The linux versions were always included in the downloads however we felt that it was becoming increasingly difficult to guarantee compatibility of the standard we wanted to provide, given the increasingly diverse and often customized nature of linux distributions (and e.g. self build host applications). There has however been some significant work on the linux versions recently, which (I hope) will increase resilience to several host application bugs and especially X11 related issues. This should provide a more reliable experience, similar to the Windows and Mac versions. There are also some ARM Linux compatible builds available in the beta software downloads area, intended for Raspberry Pi 3 running Ubuntu MATE 16.04. These are experimental, however they have been tested on a RPi 3 with hifiberry DAC+ Pro running Tracktion / Waveform 8 as the host application. Builds of Ardour appear to be available for RPi too, in the ubuntu MATE repositories, however at the time of writing this was Ardour 4 and was quite CPU heavy and a bit unreliable. It's possible / likely an optimized build of a more recent Ardour version would fair better, as it's quite remarkable what such inexpensive hardware can do.

@bdp: Heads up I just noticed OvertoneDSP updated their page with full linux support on all available plugins.

Bumping since it’s been a year or two since the last post. Calf plugins are theoretically multiplat, but without the GTK+ GUI, they’re essentially useless; not to mention the compressor has -inf. gain reduction no matter what I do on OS X (without GUI of course, compiling with GTK+ results in Ardour crashing whenever I try to open the plugin).

Don’t bother with Calf, please.

For free plugins:
Cross platform, the a-* plugins that come with Ardour are actually a good start. Also the Dragonfly Reverb[s]. x42’s plugins as well. I wouldn’t discount mda plugins either even though they are a bit old. There is a variety of others as well I am forgetting right now, as this is off the top of my head.

For paid plugins:
Harrison’s LV2 plugins, and I believe OvertoneDSP still are both good starts. x42’s paid plugins are well worth it.

I am actually working next month on prepping my online introductory mixing course (For a local uni) and putting together a list like this. I may come back and post it once I confirm everything with it.


Don’t bother with Calf, please.

Why, what’s wrong with them? I honestly haven’t found better, easier to use (and that’s an important one since the Ardour-bundled ones are fine but a bit of a hassle to use) plugin suite on Linux.

I am actually working next month on prepping my online introductory mixing course (For a local uni) and putting together a list like this. I may come back and post it once I confirm everything with it.

Please do, I’d appreciate it.

Thanks for the suggestions for the other plugins, I’ll look into them and try them out!

In short: the DSP is poor, often flawed, also the GUI displays does not correspond to what the plugin actually does.

There are various threads on this forum discussing this already. A quick search found those:

PS. Depending on context, the calf plugins can still be useful. But beware that they’re not great to learn mixing (since they display misleading information), and also unreliable on some systems.