Updated Ardour 2 Tutorial in the Works. Suggestions?

Hey All!
To celebrate the new release of Ardour 2.0, I’ve decided it’s time to update my tutorial. I’d like your input on what new and old features you’d like to see included in the tut. As far as I can tell, the current tutorial covers the following topics:

* Software Requirements
* Starting Jack with QJackctl
* Connecting Jack Inputs in Qjackctl
* Creating tracks and assigning inputs in Ardour's mixer
* record enabling tracks and the big red button
* jack transport sync
* tempo
* importing sound files
* snap to and region editing
* looping with copy/paste or dragndrop
* LADPSA plugins
* mixer sends
* recording from coreaudio apps
* punch in and out
* exporting

I’d like to include 2.0’s preliminary VST support. Anything else you want to see?

What’s the link to the tutorial?

Google “Ardour Tutorial” and it should pop up. Quicktoots has a copy, so does my friend wolever.


Not bad for a day’s work. It’s a first draft but already has some good potential.

Looks great! Keep up the good work!

Are you using docbook for the tutorial? We’re doing the ardour manual using docbook, so our SVN repository might be a good place to store the tutorial as well.

Hey Sampo,
Never used docbook before. Just using straight up HTML and CSS.

It’s CC (by-nc-sa 3) licensed, so you can use it under those terms for now. Probably when it’s finished I may offer a special license to one or more of the Ardour devs to use it in part or whole in the manual.

How about a section on using some external applications with Ardour such as Hydrogen or one of the softsynths? Synching, recording and mixing. Though this isn’t entirely Ardour related it would be extremely helpful for people new to Ardour to get recording as quickly as possible using a real world setup.

Hey hackmeister. Version 1 had extensive info on using hydrogen with ardour, and even a bit on using coreaudio apps. I intend to include this information in version 2. In fact, one of the main differences between 1 and 2 is that 2 will actually include more “real world” instruments and microphone recordings than 1, which was largely a digital production.

Hey Benny. Nice stuff, keep up the good work.
I would explain more about plugins, I mean all the different kinds of plugins, which are implemented and which are not. There are so many kinds that I think it’s pretty confusing.

Afaik it’s like this: (please, anyone, correct me if i’m wrong)
vst : steinbergs plugins. for audio processing

vsti: like vst but midi in, audio out (for instruments)

A link to http://ladspavst.linuxaudio.org/?intro=1 (checks which proprietary plugins work on linux, and to which degree). also a note about some free linux-native vst’s like the ones here http://www.anticore.org/jucetice/

ladspa. like vst but completely “free”. http://www.ladspa.org/
Some examples (caps plugins,…)

dssi: like ladspa, but for instruments. (comparable to vsti). there are very few dssi based plugins, but dssi support inside ardour is coming nonetheless.

lv2: very advanced api that can be combined for all kinds of audio processing, with support for several kinds of inputs (audio, midi)
it can do regular effects like vst/ladspa, but also instruments like vsti/dssi. and more… still in development though. Support for this probably during summer when drobilla gets bored. http://lv2plug.in/

Also maybe put a note on Steinbergs restrictions about the vst header files.

Not a bad idea, dieterb, I’ll take not of it for when i get started on plugins

I’ll soon be in need of a proofreader, someone proficient in Ardour and Engligh, who can correct both technical mistakes, grammar errors and suggest stylistic improvements. If you are such a person, post here or drop me a message.


Drafted the section on plugins and busses

Please note that everything here is in rough draft. If you spot any errors or omittions, please let me know. Thanks!

Hi bennyp,

Great work on the tutorial! About your explanation on routing tracks to a (mono) bus and applying effects there, it occurs to me that apart from being convenient, it is not quite the same as applying the plugins separately for each track, in two respects: 1. you loose the ability to pan the tracks separately, and 2. depending on the plugin, the result of applying the effect to a mix of two signals might not be identical to the result of applying it to two signals separately (especially compression will behave differently I think).

This is not intended as criticism, just as a comment. I’m not an audio expert either, just trying to find my way in daw land. I would be interested in hearing other people’s common practices for applying effects etc. but this is obviously not the right topic. Might start one in “how do I?” or post a call for “Hints and Tricks”.


Thanks Maarten!
That kind of constructive criticism is exactly what I’m looking for. I’ll add it to the tutorial.

As regards panning, if i output my two mono tracks into a bus through a single input, but the bus has a stereo output, would the panning data not be preserved?


Do you mean a stereo bus or a mono bus? A stereo bus has two input and two output channels, a mono bus has one input channel and one output channel. In the case of routing through a stereo bus, the panning of the two source tracks doesn’t change as long as you have the left bus channel fully left, and the other fully right.

In the case of a mono bus, of course the left and right channels of the source tracks get mixed into one, and you lose the panning of the source tracks. Your mono bus might have two outputs, if you add a plugin that has two outputs, but that won’t give you back the original panning.

maarten, I actually discovered that as a result of your suggestion, and ended up uncovering a bug, which I submitted to Mantis. I’ll have to re-check my tutorial to examine whether the improper use of the feature is still there.

I think I’ll also add a section on using busses for headphone mixes, even though I dont’ have enough mics, headphones or musicians to really need it right now :wink:

Then again, if anyone wants to buy me some mics, headphones and a band, I’m not against the idea :wink:

Ok folks, the first draft is finally finished (fresh from the fingers for friends and foes alike ;))

Ardour Tutorial

Please take some time to proofread it, if you get the chance. Be on the lookout for broken links, mislabeled section headings, innacurate info, misspellings, etc.