Waves just announced today that with version 9, you will no longer need to own an iLok to use their plugins. Not getting my hopes up for any kind of actual support, but i was just wondering if the folks here with a more intimate knowledge of how these sorts of things work could shed some light on the potential of finally being able to use waves with ardour on linux?
Funny that you are mentioning the SSL plugins after talking to LinuxDSP
About VST support, I have to not only second LinuxDSPs comment, but warn again everyone from using ArdourVST. Some years from now, I mixed a demo for a small band, “non critical” work. I used the VST plugins from digitalfishphones.com a lot, they sounded good and worked fine. And right when the band said “hey, we’ll do a small gig to release the demo next week, you said you were nearly finished”, Ardour kept crashing and crashing whenever I opened up a VST plugin… It was so frustrating. And on top of that, no one can help you - the Ardour devs have no possibility to look into ardourvst.exe, it’s not debuggable etc. etc. Again, it might work, but you can never count on it.
Besides, we have some good plugins around nowadays, even if there aren’t enough yet (if that is ever possible). My favorites are the LV2s from www.linuxdsp.co.uk, the Invada plugins, some of the Calf (in development , cool stuff but not completely stable) and of course a lot of LADSPA like the ones from Steve Harris.
Before Waves started requiring iLok, it was possible to use their software on Linux via Wine IIRC. Since they started requiring the iLok some time ago it has been less than useless to even try as the iLok wasn’t supported. So if someone owns Waves v9 that doesn’t need an iLok, and wants to try getting it running under Wine and the headaches of authorization that has the potential to cause, then we might have a better idea, but I wouldn’t hold my breath, and I certainly wouldn’t spend money on them at this point trying to use them in Linux.
If you use Waves, or any other Windows plugins on linux you are going to be depending upon the WINE compatibility layer to make things work for you. WINE is an incredible piece of work, but it is trying to allow binaries compiled for a completely different operating system to run on linux and as such I don’t believe it can ever be completely stable.
The big problem when testing software (and plugins) using WINE is that what may appear to work just fine may be hiding some intermittent problems (I’ve experienced this myself, something can work fine for days and then just decide it won’t even start anymore - it may recover later, it may not)
While this can potentially happen with any software, the combination of reverse engineered Windows compatibility layer and proprietary Windows applications / plugins coupled with the fact that some parts of the Windows API behaviour differ slightly even from the MSDN documented behaviour in subtle ways means that in this case such problems are very difficult to find / fix.
If you want / have to use Windows applications (especially ones you may have paid a lot of money for), you would do better to use them on Windows unless you are working on non-critical projects and don’t mind the possibility that the software may not work occasionally, or may break when the next WINE update happens.
You could also see if similar tools exist as native linux applications / plugins, although I appreciate that there are still a lot of applications / plugins for which there is no equivalent on linux.
again, thanks for the input. i’m aware of the compatibility issues, i more so had a passing curiosity about the matter because i’ve heard stories (possibly even on this very forum, i don’t rightly recall) about native plugins working with ardour on linux. RTAS/TDM is completely out of the question, as our overlords at avid have willed it to be so, but i couldn’t help but hold out some hope for vst or even au.
realistically speaking, all the work i do is non critical as pro audio isn’t an income stream for me. waves has some stuff that definitely piques my interest and i can guarantee there isn’t a linux equiv. for (SSL 4000), but it’s really nothing i can’t live without.
It is being replaced with a new tool whose name escapes me that I am looking forward to (Can’t you tell with me not being able to remember the name?). But the basic concept in as far as patching them into Ardour should be the same.
linuxdsp is a former SSL engineer before he left and started his own DSP company, LinuxDSP;) It might not be exactly what you are looking for, but in general I find his stuff very usable. And of course you get the Harrison console EQ/Compresion/etc. in Mixbus.
About VST support, I have to not only second LinuxDSPs comment, but warn again everyone from using ArdourVST. Some years from now, I mixed a demo for a small band, "non critical" work. I used the VST plugins from digitalfishphones.com a lot, they sounded good and worked fine. And right when the band said "hey, we'll do a small gig to release the demo next week, you said you were nearly finished", Ardour kept crashing and crashing whenever I opened up a VST plugin... It was so frustrating. And on top of that, no one can help you - the Ardour devs have no possibility to look into ardourvst.exe, it's not debuggable etc. etc. Again, it might work, but you can never count on it.
I have been using Festige for this myself and using Inserts into Ardour with good success. It has emphasized the need for a good session management solution to me, but it has allowed me to use some plugins for which there is no linux equivalent (Realtime Noise Reduction for example) with good sucess. This also means that if it does crash (Hasn’t yet on me thankfully) that it doesn’t take down Ardour or Mixbus with it.