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"Ardour" on https://aligot-death.space, available at https://aligot-death.space/wiki/ardour-en

wiki/Creation Linux DAW


Setting up Ardour on Debian.

Read it aloud: play pause stop



This guide was tested on Debian.

install package:

sudo apt install ardour

follow debian wiki regarding real time capabilities (make sure user is still in the audio group):

  1. Add to the end of the file /etc/security/limits.conf:

    @audio                -       memlock         unlimited
  2. Add to file /etc/pam.d/common-session:

    session required pam_limits.so
  3. And you need (contrary to some guides which say that it is a eventuality) to add your own user to the aformentionned audio group:

    sudo usermod -aG audio nemecle

if no sound, https://discourse.ardour.org/t/no-sound/90327/2:

Start QJackCTL and click on setup.

Then locate the box named “Interface” and click the arrow on the right side of it pointing to the right (do not confuse this with the drop down menu arrow that points down). Here you can see the list of sound devices on your system, select the one you want to use and click “Ok”.

Click on “Start” on the QJackCTL interface to start Jack.

Now start Ardour and Select Jack as the audio Backend

In this picture I have selected Presonus Audiobox 1818VSL as the audio device.

  1. Basic plugins
sudo apt install eq10q x42-eq calf-plugins


If you use an audio interface or something, go to settings > advanced and set the input device (might require to fumble around to find the display name for your interface).

The "connect" window acts like a literal connection bay: for instance, select the input device on the left and the virtual amp on the right and connect them. You can then simply build a circuit like:

[guitar -> ] audio interface -> virtual amp -> Ardour -> system output (headphones/speakers)

devices names:

Midi keyboard#



Noise gate, reverber, flanger, sidechain compressor...#

sudo apt install calf-plugins

Graphic EQ#

eq10q and x42-eq, both available as packages on debian-based distributions:

sudo apt install eq10q x42-eq

The EQ10Q (under the category "plugins" for some reasons) does the job well.

Synthesiser: Helm#


(drums) https://github.com/geontime/geonkick install redkite as told then dependencies libjack-jackd2-dev, NOT libjack-dev > apt-get install build-essential cmake qjackctl libjack-jackd2-dev libsndfile-dev rapidjson-dev lv2-dev

-> open issue once installed ?


Sound removal#

This program is actually a standalone.


Audio tips#


44kHz/16bit info https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cIQ9IXSUzuM A->D->A

More than just avoiding the "red zone", stay well below it: modern 16bit precision means that even a rather "low" sound still has a lot a definition and can be safely amplified. Avoid at all cost a signal that is "too hot" (i.e. close to that danger zone), or dynamics management will be a nightmare.

Guitarix (available as a apt package) does a very good job as a virtual amp, as long as the input device is not garbage (i.e. do not use the default mic input on your computer unless you want to make low-cost Lightning Bolt).


  1. Ensure that individual tracks stay just below -3dB
  2. Compress a bit to kill potential hard sound and keep dynamics under control
  3. EQ:
  • Boost wide, cut narrow
  • add high shelf and low shelf to keep only useful frequencies
  • chase parasites by setting a narrow positive filter, move it around until something starts resonating, and cut it off
  • boost based on feeling, according to this chart:https://web.archive.org/web/20190417040339/https://www.independentrecording.net/irn/resources/freqchart/main_display.htm
  1. de-essing (reduction of "sss" clashing sounds) on human voice if necessary (plugin to find, check http://www.linuxdsp.co.uk/download/lv2/download_dsr500/index.html and https://twinysam.github.io/FreeAudioPluginList/)
  2. pan & wide


The screenshot corresponding to the text above.

The amplitude of the first audio ends at the bottom ,and the next one start at the top: the speaker will quickly transition between the two, creating a pop.

Be careful with "mismatched amplitude" when sticking two audio elements, including when doing video editing. Avoid it by either:

  • doing "snap-to-zero crossing" (always cutting when the amplitude is at zero, but this is not trivial in a video editing software);
  • do a small cross fade;
  • slightly reduce the sound on the last frame of each element;
  • add in the background the "room tone" (i.e., the background sound of the recorded place without any other sound)