Ardour 3 — a users’ guide

Paul Davis

Carl Hetherington

Roy Vegard Ovesen


Table of Contents

1. Introduction
What is Ardour?
Typographical conventions
About this manual
Licence
Getting help with Ardour
The website
IRC
Mailing lists
Support expectations
2. Overview
JACK
Ardour concepts
Sessions
Tracks
Regions
Playlists
Busses
Plugins
The Ardour interface
The editor window
The mixer window
3. Quick start
Starting Ardour and creating a session
Adding a track and connecting it up
Recording
Playing back your recording
Adding another track as an overdub
Mix-down
Export
4. The editor window
The playhead
The toolbar
Rulers
Time displays
Meter and tempo
Markers
Clocks
Times area
Edit point selector
Zoom controls
Grid controls
Nudge controls
The editor lists
Region list
Tracks & Busses
Snapshots
Track & Bus Groups
Ranges & Marks
Other buttons
Solo
Audition
Feedback
Metronome
Positional sync button
Auto Play
Auto Return
The transport controls
The summary
The status bar
The editor mixer strip
5. Tracks and busses
Track and bus basics
Types
Adding and removing tracks
Track and bus groups
Tracks and busses in the editor window
Busses
Audio tracks
MIDI tracks
6. Signal flow and the mixer
Signal flow in the strip
Input
Processors
Panning
Output ports
Monitoring
Different ways of monitoring
Overall signal flow and solo / mute
The master bus
The monitor bus
Mute and solo
Connecting things
Automatic connections
Manual connections
7. Recording
Basic recording
Punch in/out
Step entry
8. Editing
Basic region operations
Splitting regions
Duplicating regions
Overlapping regions
Raising and lowering overlapping regions
Audio region fades
Cross-fading
Audio region gain
Pitch shifting
Time stretching
Stripping silence
Rhythm Ferret
Spectral analysis
MIDI region editing
Channel selection
Full note details
Cutting, copying and pasting notes
Adding notes
Editing velocities of multiple notes
Patch Changes
Other MIDI operations
Transpose
Quantize
Fork
List Editor
Non-note MIDI data
Undo and redo
Time
9. Automation
Adding an automation lane
Automation modes
Creating automation
Editing automation
MIDI ‘automation’
Thinning
10. Sessions
Sessions and session files
Snapshots and save-as
Session templates
Session clean-up
Renaming
11. Locations and markers
Location markers
Range markers
CD track marks
The locations window
12. Synchronisation
MIDI time code
JACK transport
MIDI clock
Timecode options
Timecode frames-per-second
Subframes per frame
Timecode source shares sample clock with audio interface
Pull up/pull-down
Timecode offset (and timecode offset negative)
13. Control surfaces
Generic MIDI surfaces
14. Region operations
15. Configuration
Per-session and global options
Session properties
Timecode
Fades
Media
Monitoring
Misc
Ardour preferences
Misc
Transport
Editor
Audio
Solo / mute
MIDI
User interaction
Interface
16. Troubleshooting
Starting Ardour from the terminal
Startup warnings
Your system has a limit for maximum amount of locked memory!
17. JACK
Introduction
JACK and other audio software
Will my sound card work?
JACK versions
Starting JACK
Parameters
Troubleshooting JACK
I am getting lots of xruns!
I can play back but I cannot record, or vice versa
18. Advanced JACK
Using JACK with multiple sound cards
19. Unfiled miscellany
MIDI binding maps
File basics
Finding out what your MIDI control surface sends
Describing MIDI in the binding file
Binding to Ardour
Binding to Ardour ‘functions’
Binding to Ardour ‘actions’
Banks and banking
Motorised controls
A complete (though muddled) example
The processor list
Operations on the processor list
Tracks and busses in detail
Export
Internal return
Monitor control
Monitor send
Meter
User processors
Amp
Main out

List of Figures

2.1. A typical editor window
2.2. A typical mixer window
3.1. Welcome to Ardour!
3.2. Default folder for new sessions
3.3. Monitoring choices
3.4. Monitor section
3.5. Audio/MIDI setup — device
3.6. New session
3.7. And finally: the editor!
3.8. Add Track or Bus dialogue
3.9. Top part of a mixer strip
3.10. Input port matrix
3.11. Track controls area
3.12. Main transport controls
3.13. Editor window after recording a region
3.14. The mixer window
3.15. The export dialogue
4.1. A typical editor window
4.2. The Ardour toolbar
4.3. The zoom controls
4.4. Main transport controls
5.1. Add Track or Bus dialogue
5.2. The header of a track in a group
5.3. The track/bus group dialogue
5.4. Controls for a typical bus
5.5. Controls for a typical audio track
5.6. Typical MIDI track controls
6.1. A typical mixer window
6.2. A typical mixer strip
6.3. Basic track signal flow
6.4. A mixer strip input connection editor
6.5. A 1-in, 2-out panner
6.6. A 2-in, 2-out panner
6.7. External monitoring
6.8. JACK-based ‘hardware’ monitoring
6.9. Software monitoring
6.10. Solo and mute with a monitor bus
6.11. A connection editor
7.1. A punch range marker
7.2. The punch buttons set for a punch in and out
7.3. The MIDI step entry dialogue
8.1. An audio region
8.2. Trimming the end of an audio region
8.3. Some overlapping regions
8.4. Some regions with fades
8.5. Dragging a fade-in
8.6. Fade shape menu
8.7. Simple cross-fade
8.8. An audio region with a gain line
8.9. The strip silence dialogue
8.10. The Rhythm Ferret dialogue
8.11. A MIDI region with ‘edit region contents’ switched off
8.12. A MIDI region with ‘edit region contents’ switched on
8.13. Extra MIDI track controls
8.14. Altering a note's channel
8.15. Setting note velocity
8.16. A couple of patch changes
8.17. The quantization dialogue
8.18. The mathematics of swing
8.19. A region at one tempo
8.20. Possible region positions after changing tempo
9.1. An automation lane
9.2. Thinning automation data
10.1. A session
11.1. The location markers context menu
11.2. The locations window
17.1. An example JACK session
19.1. Basic structure of a track or bus
19.2. The processor box
19.3. Detailed view of a route

List of Equations

8.0.
16.0.