Questions about how Freeze works

I posted this on the mailing list yesterday but didn’t get any response yet so I’m cross-posting here – apologies if I shouldn’t have done.

I’m trying to understand exactly how Freeze works but there doesn’t seem to be any information about it in the manual yet. Can anyone shed any light on it?

From what I can gather, it takes into account the fader level (the fader level is set to 0.0 for the frozen audio but the level is the same as the unfrozen at whatever position the fader was it). If there is fader automation on the track to be frozen, is this printed or is the audio just bounced through at a static level?

Does altering/automating the fader level of the frozen audio disturb the pre-frozen fader level in any way?

By the way, I notice that Send fader automation still works after audio is frozen, which is a really nice touch when you have post-fader Sends to reverb busses for example.

I doubt I’ll ever use anything other than post-fader sends for reverb, but out of interest, what happens with pre-fader sends? Is the frozen audio just rendered through the pre-send plugins but not post-send plugins and the fader, or is the fader level taken into account?

It seems that all frozen bounces are kept, even after a track is unfrozen, is that right? Is there a way of getting rid of older bounces so that sessions don’t balloon due to numerous rounds of unfreeze/tweak/freeze?

I’m trying desperately to free up resources so I can continue with a mix so I want to understand how Freeze works so that I can make best use of it.

Thanks in advance.

Sorry for talking to myself. I guess I should have done this before posting, but I’ve done a couple of quick and dirty experiments.

It seems that fader automation definitely isn’t taken into account with Freeze. It’ll be a pain having to recreate the automation on the frozen version, but at least that’s doable.

It also seems that plugin automation is ignored during Freeze, which makes it far, far less useful for my needs. I’ve tried using Bounce through processing instead, but that just completely locks A3 up for a while before finally crashing (I’m using rc3 if that has any bearing on things).

I’d expected that Freeze would bounce through fader and plugin automation – might it do that at some point in the future, or is that an unrealistic expectation?

Thanks again

Urgh, I’ve now discovered quite by chance that the fader has absolutely no effect on the level of frozen audio. The Freeze feature seems to be almost totally devoid of any purpose – it’s only useful for tracks that remain totally static throughout a session, with zero change in level and zero change in effects.

I always thought the point of Freeze was to free up CPU by replacing audio+plugins+fader+automation with a temporary recording that exactly replaced that. Obviously I’m completely wrong about that.

There is a lot of confusion about Freeze vs Bounce, but it sounds like you are seeing a bug and should report it on Mantis.


Ah, okay, thanks. So what is the difference between Freeze and Bounce – how exactly is Freeze supposed to work? Thinking about it, it is a little confusing that there are three options, bouncing with and without processing and freeze, because two of them sound almost like they might do the same thing. I’m sure that isn’t how it actually works though.

I’m certainly seeing a bug with Bounce (with processing) as that reliably crashes Ardour. Do you think I’m experiencing a bug with Freeze as well? I’ll gladly report them in Mantis, I just didn’t want to report as a bug something that was working properly, just not how I expected (due to my ignorance about the correct behaviour).