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Free and open-source software I use for music production

You decide if this stuff is going to work for you and for that you need to know why it works for me not just that it works I’ll skip a lot of detail because this article could easily last a week, and we don’t want that.

Please keep in mind that I have preference, so my weapon of choice might not be the best for you, but in case this sounds fun. My current toolchain might be a great starting point for you all right. Let’s begin, and I will begin with the operating system. You already know that I’m using Linux for all my work, but the number of Linux distributions is approaching infinity so that info alone isn’t that helpful.

In the past, I’ve been happily using caves to do live DVD as my main system, the one is now badly outdated. So I had to switch for a few years now I’ve been running Linux, Mint 18.3, with KDE 5. Why did I choose this one three main reasons. First, with Linux Mint, I can use both cakes to do repositories and PPAs kicks the repositories. I already made two articles about these, so let me just say it’s a fantastic source of cutting-edge, open source software for audio production, ppas, our personal repositories usually created by developers to distribute newest versions of their software.

I use it for a couple of article tools like OBS and simple screen: recorder, second reason: KDE 5 or plasma desktop as it’s also called it’s a great-looking desktop environment. That has a lot of features that I find missing from its alternatives and ferd Linux Mint has a great tool for managing article card drivers, so I was able to install Nvidia drivers and get CUDA working relatively easy there.

Now it doesn’t have really much to do with music production, but I also do graphic design for the animation and rendering, and I need this stuff. However, it can also be helpful for playing games, so that’s my main reasons for choosing a Linux Mint. 18.3. However, the problem I’m facing right now is that Linux Mint is no longer shipping with plasma desktop, so I’m actually looking for a replacement.

I just don’t think cinnamon can replace plasma in my life. Before I move on to the next section, I would like to discuss a topic known as the modular workflow. Now the Linux audio ecosystem has a lot of standalone programs that can be used together with the jack server to create a virtual modular environment. It’s a bit like having a desk and putting a mixer some FX synthesizers sequencer and connecting all of that with cables to produce music.

Now this can be a lot of fun, but I think there’s one big problem with all modular setups. You can’t easily save and load your work and for me that really kills productivity. I know there are so-called session managers, but I really I did I couldn’t ever make get this stuff to work for me, so I have ultimately decided that whatever I’m going to be using to make music, it has to live inside of a digital audio workstation.

Fine. Now we can move on and talk about the digital audio workstations. For many years I’ve been making music with lmms in tandem with our door. I’ve produced multiple full-length albums this way, including the most recent one titled suppressed. However, in 2017 I finally decided to drop LMS and focus my workflow entirely on order alone, why? I made a detailed article comparing the two in the past, so let me just rephrase that real quick for many years Alma Mass was the only integrated music production environment with MIDI, editing and sound design capabilities that would suit my needs.

Illuma mess, however, lacked advanced signal. Routing lv2 plug-in support, audio recording and editing and other functions that our tour boasted for years already. In order to be able to do everything, I wanted I to use both programs together. I used to do it like this. Make instrumentals in lmms export a mix imported into order, add vocals, guitars or extra editing and effects then export another mix and finally master all the mixes in a separate order session to produce the final album.

However, error was developing its MIDI workflow for quite a few years now, and once I found it has majored enough to be production already, I’ve decided to drop all MMS and simplify my workflow. So that’s that the last part of the tool said I want to talk about. Are the plugins? That’s a big one, we’re going to need a few subcategories here. Let’s talk about synthesizers. First then we’ll move on to FX processors.

You see I’m a bit weird in this regard. Other people use drum samples they found on the internet and I used to do that’s too back in 2005, but now I synthesize all my drums. That’s why I don’t use any sampler moving on the synthesizer clubbing and the synthesizer plug-in that I use 95 % of the time is was in fusion. Why? Well again, it’s the most powerful, versatile and modern open-source sound synthesizer out there.

I dare you to prove me wrong on this. There is something on the horizon that might challenge this, but for now, as infusion has almost everything I need in case you don’t know, this infusion is a new graphical user interface to zenith’s of FX 3.0. It runs in a single window. It’s scalable. It’s awesome. It made me work with lots of effects even faster in case you want to learn the all user interface.

A few years ago, I made a long as article covering everything in great detail, and also lots of the knowledge will translate this infusion as well as it’s the same synth under the hood. However, if you feel intimidated but still affects complexity, I can recommend a few other liver synthesizers that are not as layered, namely tall, noisemaker, OB, XD, helmed, oxy, FM sense and dext, however, know this that z knots of effects can do almost everything that these synthesizers can And much much more so if you’re really serious about sound design and you want to use open source stuff, learn some effects.

Alright, alright, why actually use them and I do more guitar focus stuff? Ok, so let’s talk about the sampler plugins, you can use hydrogen drum kits installed on your system using a plugin called DRM, our sampler. It’s simple: it only allows serial output. We could work around this, but I never had it crap out on me. So it’s safe to use! If you need quick, great sounding acoustic drum sounds, I recommend a VL drum kits.

These are lv2 plugins and caps, elating acoustic, drum kits created by the AV linux project. These come both in stereo and multi-blog variations and are integrated extremely well with order. They are black boxes, however, so you can swap out the samples, but that’s the point here. Another plugin I used is Fablab it’s a simple but nice-looking sampler from open 80 productions, single layered. I have experienced some problems with it, so I wouldn’t call it exactly a rock-solid, but I like it, there’s also Fabri, which has awesome functionality, but it’s still far from being production ready at this point, I’ve briefly tried sample v1 and drum kv-1 from the man behind Cue tractor, I think these are solid options among two samplers, but again I haven’t worked them too hard.

So don’t blame me if they disappoint there’s also some decent looking drum samplers in the LSP bundle, they support velocity layers, stereo or multi-blog output. Again, my experience is very limited, so proceed at your own risk. I mention one last drum sampler because it’s freakin kick-ass drum gizmo. If you know how to mix acoustic drums from scratch, read this talk by bent and you can tap into the amazing drum kits and technology of drum gizmo.

I am the main developer of drum gizmo 10 years ago, when I made it. I had a very specific workflow in mind my tip pick a drum kit and read its readme file before you start there’s a listing of all the output blogs and what they are supposed to be without that he’ll be lost once you sort that out, you can Just stop like this all right enough drum samples for one article. Now, let’s talk about something I’m really excited about, and that is the effect processor applause.

Let’s start with delay, call vintage delay. Syncs 2 ppm sounds great. I use this all the time. A delay, an ardor slew, a plugin that can be used for some awesome flaming effects. If you automate the delay time in millisecond range delay, arama a great plugin for creative effects that can deliver up to 128 delay tabs each with procedurally generated delay. Time and amplitude. Reavers um verb is my favorite right now.

It’s sound is full and smooth without that strange tinny character that many synthetic reverbs have it’s also very flexible, and it looks nice GX Zeta Rev one stereo. This is a guitar X interface to the famous zither river by phones and reason it sounds awesome quite flexible, so it won’t replace in verb for me because you can’t make it small enough. Gx reverb stereo, this one sounds a lot like a spring reverb, which is very rare among synthetic reverbs.

It sounds nice on drums and guitars. So there’s not much things to set up here, eq’s and filters. I use EQ. Thank you for everything I used to use cough equalizer, eight-b –, and this one is also very nice. So one day I just decided to try EQ, thank you and it’s stuck with me. Cult filter. I use this one. All the time to reveal sounds with the Lopez modes or to add motion to my bass patches using no cheese and band best modes pitch shifter.

I love em a pitch shift for messing things up, especially when you automate the ratio and window parameters. It creates cool glitchy effects. I would recommend rubberband pitch shifters for more traditional pitch shifting, as they allow precise musical control of the pitch, and they also sounds pretty good for some quick, sound butchery. I also like using AM pitch shifter. It can sound very glitchy in bed, and I like that distortion wall shaper I’ve made three articles about this one already it’s extremely flexible and can be used just as well for gentle saturation as for head splitting distortion, tap tube warmth is a great sounding.

Yet simple saturation plugin, I love it on bass and drums don’t be discouraged by the lack of a custom, graphical user interface. Also called saturator is based on the algorithms of this plane. Caps and VTS cube amp plus tone stack. This is a great all-in-one plugin for guitar distortion. Again, don’t be misled by a lack of the custom GUI. It sounds great and not just on guitars GX amplifier X. This is a fancy.

Looking great sounding all-in-one. It’s are a torsion suit with tube cabinet and stonest accumulation dynamics. Processing curve, compressor, is what I use all the time. It’s great, looking versatile, easy to use. The compression graft function is very helpful. Call sidechain compressor same story only now the kick drum compresses the baseline cough limiter. I put this on every master bus. I see multiband compressor stereo x8 from LSP.

This is an eighth band compressor by default it runs with four bends. It sounds way cleaner than the cult multiband compressor, so the interface is a bit cluttered cough de-esser. I put this on every vocal track and sometimes on bass and lead tracks as well. If the highs are getting painful at certain notes, there’s a neat trick for you. Super smelly, shampoo, spies, super smelly, shampoo, spies, psyching gates, stereo from LSP.

I use this to gate, pads or vocals with a trigger zone like this super smelly, shampoo, spies, super spy other are but one or two it’s a versatile granular processor. You can do dozens of strange effects with this one noise repellent. This is a real-time denoising plugin. It has some latency, but our door can cope with that bad quality voice, recording testing one two: three bad quality voice, recording testing one two: three tal vocoder: this is a simple, yet powerful vocoder that won’t kill your CPU only Cal vocoder, a fantastic vocoder that I’d Actually kill your CPU auto-tuned.

This one is great for either monitoring your vocal performance quality or fixing it super smelly, shampoo, spies, super smelly, shampoo spies or creating these weird synth lying vocal, lead lines by using the auxillary midi input bit, rot, repeat great for glitchy repeating effects very versatile. Don’t be scared over by a lack of a custom, graphical user interface bit. Red tape stop likewise very useful for this one iconic effect tapes – all right, let’s cut it here.

There are dozens more that I’d love to talk about, but this article is getting a bit too long in the future. Articles I’ll take a closer look at the plugins I mentioned here and some other ones as well to help you get the most out of what the free and open source audio ecosystem offers thanks for reading. I hope this article was worth your time. I also want to thank all the patreon supporters who are enabling me to make articles like this one, if you’d like to join them and help keep this show going.

Please go to patreon.Com/scishow now go and make some music you


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How do I prepare Manjaro KDE for audio production?

How do I do that? I have a fresh Manjaro installation and we’re going to go for the process of configuring, the system and installing all necessary packages making sure it works good and then installing all the software that you might need for a music production, all the doors or the plugins.

And that sort of thing, and I’m going to show you where to get this and how to install it, how to later update it, etc. So you’ve just logged in for the first time into your new system and there’s a few things I want to do. The first thing might be a little bit strange to you, but the first thing I ever do is configure backups. So let’s open a program called time shift. Now it’s not installed, so we have to install time shift now.

Something I really like about Manjaro is that it has a drop-down terminal installed by default. So if you just press f12, you get this terminal, you can press shift, +, alt, +, arrow keys, right, arrow, key and down arrow key to make it bigger, and I usually like to have it much bigger. We can also make the font bigger if we just use ctrl + my mouse wheel, and this is going to be much easier to to follow.

I hope alrighty. So we need to install time shift, but first we need to update our package list so pac-man, which is the package manager s and Y. This will go into in update all the package information but of course we need to use sudo so sudo and I can now type exclamation points and that’s going to execute the previous command with prefix. So that’s going to execute pseudo pac-man s. Why? Now? I’m going to type in my temporary password, which is one two three four and let’s let it run and everything is up to date great now we can install time shift so I’m going to go sudo pac-man s, time shift.

This is going to install a package called time shift and all its dependencies proceed with installation. I just press ENTER and it’s default. Yes, it’s going to download some packages and time shift is installed. Now I can press f12 to hide the terminal. We can also close this hello dialogue. Now I can open my main menu and type time, and you see there is time shift a system restore utility. Now we need to give it our administration password that you’ve set during installation and during first run time shift, is going to ask you to configure how it’s going to do its job.

Now, if you have installed your system using ext4, filesystem you’re going to have to use our sink, which is the default option, this is simpler and but it takes longer to do. I have installed Manjaro using Manjaro architect and I’ve installed it on a btrfs filesystem. So I can use the very fast snapshot functionality of btrfs to create and restore these snapshots nearly instantly. So I’m going to select btrfs, you can also open help and read up about them.

Now we have to choose the file system, we’re going to store the backups on. We have one file system present in this in this laptop, it’s the main file system. So we don’t have to do anything now. We can configure a snapshot schedule by default. Time shift is going to do five daily backups, I’m going to disable that, because I want to be using time shift only to do manual snapshots when before upgrading my system, let’s go next this, let’s leave this enabled, and now we can include the user home directory.

What this means is everything in our home user directory will also be included in the snapshot. That means our documents. I want to use time shift only to store the system state, so I’m going to leave this off, but if you want to also include your documents, projects and everything, you can click this and it will back up everything, let’s press next and the setup is complete. I can now click finish: let’s create our first snapshot.

What you got to do is just click create now on btrfs. This takes no time at all. If you want to delete a snapshot, just use this delete button. If you were to roll back to that snapshot, we just press restore it’s as simple as that. We can also browse the selected snapshot files to retreat, something that was previously on our disk. But it’s not isn’t there anymore. Ok, this article is not about time shift.

Let’s get going now, I want to make sure octopi is installed and you can see it is, but in some previous versions of Manjaro it was not installed by default. So if you would like to install octopi, you would go to your terminal window and we can clear it and you can type sudo pac-man s. Octo P, give it your administration password, and indeed there is an update to be installed for that program. Let’s go ahead and do that all right.

What actually we want to do is update the system in its entirety, so I’m going to clear it the terminal and I’m going to run sudo pac-man, big s, small Y and small. U this command will update our system. Basically check if there is anything to update and it will update everything. This is an important thing on Manjaro, which is based on arch linux, as arch. Linux is a rolling release distribution.

That means there are no frozen states like with Ubuntu’s. You know different trees like 1404 or 1909 or who knows what 1909 oh, and then you update packages for the versions supported by this version of the system. No on arch based Linux distributions, like Manjaro, you are always on the bleeding edge, so you often will be required to update all your system packages now there is not much to update, because I have actually updated it during installation.

Another tool we’re going to need to install extra software is called yay yay, and it’s going to give us access to so called arch user repository, which is a collection of user created. Pk builds. These are scripts that get sources or binary packages from the internet and either build these sources or build packages from the binary files and install them to your system. There is pretty much everything you could ever imagine or want in the arch user repository, so we’re going to need that for some really bleeding-edge versions of our software or plugins that are not in the usual repositories.

So let’s go sudo pac-man s yay! Now you can see that I already had ya installed and that’s because I have chosen to have it installed during installation when I used Manjaro architect. But if you do a regular installation for the graphical installation program, you’re not going to have that option. So you will need to install yourself. The next thing we need to take care of is the jack on your server.

It’s pretty much the workhorse that’s going to hold all our audio work together. So, let’s just see if we have Jack installed, let’s go which Jack D and you can see we have Jack installed, but we want to make sure it’s the correct version. So I’m going to just make sure that Jack two is installed. I don’t use Jack one because Jack one is not multi-threaded and modern computers have at least two cores.

So it’s a shame not to use them for your DSP. From what I see here, Jack one doesn’t have any cool features at all: let’s go sudo pac-man s Jack and now you can see we have jacked installed so by default. Manjaro has supplied it with Jack 1, but we want Jack to do you want to remove Jack. I do so. We want to replace Jack 1 with Jack. Yes now. This is a very important step because if I have gone and installed other software depending on the jack replacing that package later would be quite problematic, because I would have to uninstall all the software that needs Jack audio server.

Then I could remove the jack 1 a package and then install Jack, and I would have to reinstall again all the software installed. On top of that now we are sure we are running Jack, so we can go ahead and install other things and the other thing I’m going to install is cadence sudu pac-man s. Cadence cadence is basically a control panel for production, audio work. Okay, we have cadence installed, let’s hide our terminal and let’s find it cadets.

Yes, it’s a jack toolbox, let’s open cadence and we can see. We have a yellow sign here, which says we have a non real-time kernel and with the user is an audio group. We’re going to check that soon, let’s see what we can do in the configuration the driver, we want to use alsa and yes, this is the analog interface, okay, fine, and we need to use real-time priority. Indeed, to up our performance, we can move the real-time priority up and now, if we try to do that, the jack server is started, but I’m going to stop it for now and first make sure we have other things configured properly.

So a one important thing for using Jack and Jack dependent applications like our door is to make sure that your user is allowed to use real-time scheduling in the system, and this is done with the use of so called audio group. So we can type in a command called groups and that’s going to show us what user groups our user is in and we can see it is actually in the audio group. But we need to make sure that the only group is properly configured so that it has the privilege to use the real-time scheduling that the jack server needs to do that, I’m going to go to a directory called etc’ security.

I’m going to list the files in there you can see there is limits, conf and limits dot D. This is a monolithic configuration file and this is a directory containing smaller files, which can be which are concatenated to produce the complete configuration I’m going to go into the limits, dot, d directory and list. What’s there you can see, there is something, let’s, let’s type less and ten and see what it is: their users mem, lock, 2024.

Ok, there is nothing here. Let’s go up, let’s now type nano limits, conf and I need to prefix that command with sudo. So this is run as administrator’. Nano is a text editor and limits. Conf is the file we want to edit and that’s the contents of the file. Now, let’s see if the audio group is mentioned here, let’s press ctrl W, which stands for where and now I can type audio audio is not found. That means our audio group is created in this system and our user has been added to it, but it doesn’t really have the privileges that we need.

So let’s go down to the end of the file and specify the privileges for the audio group. Let’s type a hash which starts a commented line and this is going to be ignored and now I’m going to type at audio, which means the name of the group user group tab. I’m going to use two tabs just to aligned with what is above. The type is nothing. The item is RT prior, which means real-time priority. Now I’m going to allow it 95 and, let’s also add another line, let’s call it audio again type tab, and this is mem lock unlimited.

This is another privilege for the jack server to use more memory in your system. I’ve taken this text from a website, Jack audio org, and there is a frequently asked questions section where you can find exactly how to configure this so yeah. You need to look it up and you probably will need to look it up now. We need to save the configuration file, I’m going to press ctrl o for out or right out limits.

Our conf enter. It wrote 54 lines great call. Now I’m going to press control X to exit, we can verify that the file was changed by typing less limits conf, and this is a file viewer. We can press page down, and indeed there is our audio group privileges specified, let’s press Q to quit this less problem now for this to take effect, we need to log out and log back in. So let’s do that. Okay, I’m logging! Back in now, we have cadence opened and can start all right now.

If there was no audio group in our system, we can create it by typing. Sudo group add audio. Now we need to type in our administration password. It’s going to tell us that the audio group already exists, but if it wouldn’t exist, we would have created it just now. Now we would have to also add our user to the audio group, and we can do this with the command usermod’. A big gene which means add to a group audio and now we can type our username alpha, but you can also type dollar sign and with big letters, user and this text will be substituted with whatever is the username.

Of course, I need to prefixed s with sudo or afterwards I’m studio and exclamation points, and this will execute the command. Now I have now. I should have done this before configuring, the audio group, because otherwise, that configuration would have not made any sense and then log out log back in and it would take effect to verify, let’s type in groups and indeed we are in the audio group. We can make it a bit easier by typing groups, pipe grep, which is a program to search for text audio, and it highlights the audio group in red for us to make it easier to spot.

Our user is in the audio group. Our audio group is configured so we should be able to run our tour just fine, let’s install it now. Maybe I’m going to use octopi to do so. So far I’ve been installing everything using the terminal, but you might prefer to use the graphical user interface. I’m going to type in our tour right, click install and it asks us to install optional packages. Xj do is an X, Jack article viewer, it’s a very useful viewer for working with film, soundtracks or editing, or making sound effects for pilot footage or whatever I’m going to install both of these.

Now, let’s commit these changes or apply these changes. Now I need to, of course, give my administration password and it’s going to install our door for us and Artur is installed, so let’s run it our door. Welcome to our door, I’m going to put everything in default places and I’m going to change this later. Let’s scan for plugins there’s not going to be much plugins because we haven’t installed any: let’s create an empty session hard or test my favourite name.

Let’s change the audio system to Jack, which is already running because we have started it with cadence and we can connect to it now. If we wouldn’t have the audio group and the audio group privileges properly configured, our door would not be able to create this session. It would give us an error and say that it cannot open the the session file or whatever it’s a misleading error message and what it really means is that it couldn’t obtain the real-time scheduling privileges.

Now we can pin the ardor icon to the task manager. It will let us open it up more quickly. You can also right click to start a new instance. If you want to open two other instances for some reason, we can create a new track control-shift-n, let’s make a stereo audio track, and this is already capturing audio from the built-in microphone huh. Let’s see if it works, it does hmm alrighty. It works. Now.

Let’s install more software, I’m going to save this. Let’s go back to octopi and now do you remember. I have told you we installed this program called yay. Now. If we go to tools, options and aur, you can see. We have yay selected as a as a program to interface with the arch user repository. You may have this dis elected so make sure you select yeah here. You can also enable a you are voting if you created an account on our aur Arch Linux at org.

I know I have so now I can vote on packages. You can select, no confirm and no edit to make it easier for you to go through the installation process. This will disable the option to change anything in the pay, Pete a build script, but it will also not ask you as many questions and it just going to be smoother. Let’s apply these settings and now I’m going to install this infusion first thing: I have to click on this alien face to enable the eye tool so we’re going to search the arch user repository instead of the regular arch linux or Manjaro linux packages.

So i’m going to type in Zen and press enter and we have Zen fusion here, let’s right-click and you can see. I have already voted on this package. Let’s install it and now octa-pie opens up an interminable ater and runs the high command with parameters of our package. It’s going to ask us a password, I’m going to give it the password, and you see it shows question proceed with installation and automatically answered yes, because we have selected the know confirm option.

This is right now downloading all the source code for s infusion and it’s going to compile it on the spot and install the package for us, so we can use it. This is going to take a short while, because the infusion is quite a big program now, as this installation is going on, I’m going to tell you something about pulseaudio, pulseaudio and jack are a cause of many headaches for many people using linux for audio production, because Both pulseaudio and jack are sound servers and they tend to not cooperate very well, but there is a very easy way to deal with that, and that is just to install a jack module for pools audio.

Then Posada will be able to use Jack as its audio backend. Instead of trying to use your sound card directly, two nights are fighting for the attention of Princess Elsa, the nimble Jack and the well-known police audio. But for the kingdom to blossom, we need Jack to pass the letters between Elsa and pull so do as any other way around will cause a disruption. What did I just make up unless all of that can be handled by pipe wire, but that’s a topic for another article? That means you will be able to play articles from your web browser and run order at the same time without having to stop or the other, and you can also then record articles from the web browser into your other session, because pulseaudio will expose its audio ports To the jack server and Kadence makes this easier you can see.

We have this post audio tab right here and we have information of the post of your server. You can see that post audio is started and bridged to Jack. That’s good news, because that means we already have pulls out you configured to talk to Jack. You can go to tools open katia, which is a Jack patch Bay, and we can see what is happening in our system right now. This is a graph of Jack clients and connections.

The system nodes show the built-in sound card that we are using for our Jack server, and you see we have Poots audio jack sync, which is the post audio output. So whatever you play in your web browser, for example, is going to feed it there. It’s audio here and right into our speakers, and here is post audio jack source, whatever you’re going to, if you’re going to talk to someone using a web application in your browser.

This is going to get the sound from your microphone, and here is the stereo microphone built into the laptop, but with the power of Jack, you can reroute that wherever you want, for example, you can feed output of your other session to pull Solio, so we can, For example, process your voice with our door and make people hear you with your voice changed or with reverb added or whatever I’m going to reset that to the previous st.

. Do not leave it in a mess. So Katia is a tool shipped with cadence. There is another tool called Claudia, which is a front end for laddish session mannered manager. There are also level meters. This one shows the microphone input and this is an out meter and I think it’s working, because we have this thing here. Yes, let’s see how the installation is going and we’re still cloning. Now we are copying the downloading the source files for EM Robby’s ESTs framework, which is the GUI framework that Mark Mercury have created for this infusion.

Normally this is much faster, but I’m recording the article and that slows everything down. Another thing we can talk about is using real time. Kernels now with Manjaro. Installing a new kernel is very, very easy. You just open your main menu and type kernel, and there is this tool for installing different kernels, and here are all the available kernels you can see. We are currently running kernel version for 5.

4 point 18 1, which is a long time supported kernel, it’s installed and it’s running, but there is a newer kernel, but there is a different kernel and it’s a real-time kernel. So a real-time kernel might give us better performance for Jack audio server. However, I have not found a significant change difference in my workload, but if we were to install it, we will just click here. Click yes give our password and we can show details and it’s going to download all the packages and install the real-time kernel for us, of course, to use this new kernel, we need to reboot our machine and you can verify what kernel are you running either by Opening this Manjaro kernel manager, or by opening a terminal hit f12 for example, and type a command called, you name a, and this tells us we’re running Linux.

This is the name of the computer, and this is the version of the kernel. This is a pre-emptive kernel, so it allows real-time scheduling, but it’s not like super full support and our new kernel is installed. You can see it’s now installed. If we reboot our computer, you will have a menu where we can choose which kernel we want to boot. Once we’re done with installing all the packages, I will reboot and we will choose this real-time kernel and once we confirm that it works, then we will remove the other one.

So we don’t have this option and the boot process will be simpler. Let’s check back and we’ll tale cloning by the way, a very important command on Linux is sudo, make coffee just joking. Okay. Now we have to give our password. One thing I don’t like about yeh is that it can timeout with the password. I need to install it again. Thankfully, it caches the results. So it’s not a big problem and we have the infusion installed.

Let’s try it in our door, I’m going to press Shift key to open up the side terminal by the way. I think we should change the font size of our door now there it is yeah that looks much better. Not all phones will be updated immediately, though you should rest at our order for this to take full effect and I’m going to press ctrl shift and and add a new track. Let’s make it a me track and you can see we don’t have as in fusion on this list.

What we have to do is go to edit preferences plugins and go scan for plugins, and you can see we have it’s detecting, it’s helped. It has detected zeenat’s of effects so now, if I go to control-shift-n and add a new MIDI track, I have the amounts of the facts on the list. I’m going to pick lv2 version. Let’s call this Zen fusion for some reason it didn’t have to plug in here: okay, let’s do it CIN and some effects.

Now it’s failed. What the okay all right! So now we can control shift and create a new MIDI track. Okay, let’s press control shift n to create a new MIDI track and I’m going to choose Xin fusion VST. Let’s call this Xin fusion, it’s called dance of effects, but with the new interface it is as in fusion and there we have it and it works. I’m going to install more software that I use and I need let’s go, install surge and there is search synthesizer.

We can install the binary version, it’s going to be faster because it’s not going to have to compile everything. So if you read the output, you can see that it’s downloaded a debian package right here. It’s extracted it and it’s created an arch package from that. Now it’s compressing this package, so it can be installed. So arch user repository is using various means to pull in different software, so it can be installed on Arch Linux based operating systems like Manjaro.

Now it’s installing the package and it’s installed. If we now go into edit preferences and scan for plugins, you can see it has found a search plug-in. You can create a new MIDI track, call it Serge and we can select search from the drop-down menu and, of course it doesn’t work. Hey it’s alpha and it’s eight days later I have actually used this laptop with our door 6 and that we installed during this article that you’ll see and I recorded a gig and everything went perfectly and right now.

I’ve just went back to check this order. 5 problem with all be two plugins and I removed order six and installed our door five again and it works it works. So I think that must have been some error in the arch unofficial order build and that it’s already fixed. Okay, let’s install a bunch of plugins that I use all the time I use called plugins. They are very important. I also use LSP plugins tap. Plugins may be an easier way to do.

This would be to go to the raw audio group of packages, and here we have a lot of stuff that you might want to install, for example, audacity yep golf caps, also Carla the plug-in host. This show plug-in framework, dragonfly reverb. Of course AB you meet er. Yes, drum gizmo, oh yes, EQ tank. You certainly G on kik. Oh yes, guitarist for sure helm, yeah, IRL v2. It also might want to install Jack capture or something else.

I don’t like Linux sampler at all liquid sfz I’ve heard it’s a nice plugin LSP plugins yeah MDA lv2 yeah. These are some good plugins, though I had problems with them. Ninjas too, is a nice drum loop, slicer noise repellant is an excellent realtime de noising plugin. Actually two plugins one is using neural networks can looking through anything else I might need or want sample v1 is a very useful sampler set b3 is an excellent hammond organ emulator Sherlock lv2 is a great plugin for reading.

What’s going on in your MIDI stream, sonic visualizer is a very useful program for well visualizing audio file contents, as WH plugins are used to Tampa plugins sure wall shaper. Oh yes, love spectrum 2 X, 42 plugins are very useful. These are excellent. Audio metering, plugins zam plugins, are great. Zita audio jack bridge is very nice. It’s a tool for bridging, also applications to Jack. A Zeta ng bridge is a network jack application to send Jack audio over network.

I’ve made a article about that and there’s 8 RF 1, which is the very well sounding reverb and now to install them. I right-click somewhere and then go install. It asks me to install Jack. I don’t want to because that’s optional and I also have Jack already project. Em is a music visualizer. I don’t need a visualizer plugin and it should now list all the packages I want to install. Do we have everything I think we have everything we need.

Let’s do it, of course you need to give it your password, and now we just wait in the meantime, I’m going to close this our door session, so the user interface can reload with the changed font size. Now, we’ve mostly installed software that is present in the regular Manjaro or arch linux repositories, but we can also fund search plugins that are in the arch user repository. Sometimes these are newer versions of the plugins.

I’m always amazed how fast Arch Linux packaging manager works on Debian it’s like 10 times slower. I got used to how slow it was. It’s already installed. Alright. Now we can just go edit preferences plugins scan for plugins. Now that’s going to take a while, okay yeah now this is unlocked. I can enable the aur search. What is there that is not in the usual repositories, I’m going to search for LV, Oh bitch, rot bit.

Rot are very useful plugins that are unfortunately, not very popular. We can install bit rot plugins. Let’s do that. It’s going to download the sources of of github and build them for us, these are very small, so it shouldn’t take long. I very like the bitch rot, repeat plug-in, which is very good for on creating glitchy effects, and you can very well automate it in order. I like to use it on drum lines, especially so you can have like, oh in Nevada, studio plugins in verse.

Three planes will be yay in Nevada are also some great plugins. Now I need to give my password. Okay bit. Rod is installed. We can install the invader plugins, it has 44 votes. People like these. Let’s see how order is going. Okay, it scanned everything. It has all the new plugins detected. Now we have a lot of plugins. Let’s go EQ 10-q. I use these a lot. So I’m going to add these two to my favorites.

I think there’s something wrong with our disorder installation. It can’t load any lv2 plugins. That’s no good, usually it just works so kind of sucks and I really wished something like that: wouldn’t go wrong when I’m making a article, but we have our in Venice to do plugins installed. You know what I’m going to do. I’m going to install our door! 6.0 and hope it’s going to work a bit better, so note that I’m searching in a you are, and we have our door get let’s right-click and install.

It would like to ask us to remove our door first, because these two are conflicting. If I were to edit the PK build file script, we could install both alongside, but let’s not do that, so I’m going to just remove our door, it’s already removed. Now, let’s go back to the aur search and I’m going to install our door, get you can see that our our door desktop or our icon here is no longer pointing to anything I’m going to unpin it because our door 6 is probably going to add a Different icon, we can also run Carla the nonlinear plugin host.

We can add a plugin, let’s see if the lv2 plugins work in Carla, let’s go with in Nevada. I can go with special filters and, let’s just enable lv2 plugins, nothing else in Fatah. Early reflections, reverb loaded and here is the user interface. I really like this early reflection, reverb plug-in, because you know it has this three-dimensional visualization of a room and you can place your source and your listener, and you can see the impulse response being generated on the fly and visualized.

I’ve used this a lot in the Lance perversion and lmms: okay, so lv2 plugins work in Carla, so that some problem with order. So we are not installing official order builds. So we can’t complain to order developers because the official builds probably work. Let’s open Serge lv2 here and it works, let’s make it bigger yep, just like it should alright, so Artur 6 is installed, let’s see if it works out or 6 of ascared configuration from our tour 5.

Would you like to these fans to be copied and used for our door, 6, yeah, sure and congratulations file will cover you now. You now can restart our door and okay. I don’t know why this get version. Has this weird icon welcome to this pre-release build of order? Six point: zero: three: zero! Three. 504! Yes, I know don’t use it for production, let’s create a new session, our door, six test. The main thing I want to know, if is if this version of our door, is going to work with LV two plugins, because that’s quite important, and I have no idea why the order 5 version didn’t work and, let’s see if our r6 works with all v2 Plugins because our door 5 didn’t want to control-shift-n, let’s create a new MIDI track and insert maybe sentence of effects.

Let’s call this Xena, and here it is, I’m not sure if this is the LV to plug in or the VST one. Let’s add a new track. Let’s go to me track: let’s make a no plugin at all and let’s insert the plug in manually, so plug-in manager, and here we should be able to filter by type so LV. Okay, let’s show instruments only show all formats. I want just LV okay, so we have LV two instruments: let’s try G on kick okay, so LV two plugins work in this order.

Six build that’s good. It took a while to install because this laptop is not the most powerful one. It just has 4 cores, and but it did it alright, so we have a working workstation to do things now. If we wouldn’t have the pulse out your jack module pulsar, they wouldn’t cooperate with jacks, so let’s try and find it in the package manager. In case you need to install it, we can also install vcv rack.

So in aur we have vcv. Rack can install the binary package, so you don’t have to build it from source. Ok, that works, and you can see we have VCB rack here. We can change the audio backends to Jack and we can make it feed into the system output, but now we can intercept that you can clean these and use these outputs here and now can record. Don’t pay attention to the X runs. This laptop is under heavy load.

No, we have recorded audio from vcv rack into order now. The very last thing we can do to try and improve our jack performance is to install a real-time kernel so away like I said before, you can go here, type kernel and we’re going to have this thing opened now we have installed the real-time kernel, but we Are still running the non real-time kernel, so I will now reboot this machine. I like to just press f12 and type reboot, oh by the way before we do, that we can create a time shift snapshot and we can do it in two ways.

I’m going to show you the graphical user interface way, so you’re open up time shift. We give it already you administrator password or root password, and we can click here to create a new snapshot, but I also want to show you how to do the same from the comment line. So I’ve got sudo time shift and if you run this command, it’s going to show you all the help text to tell you what you can do with time shift.

Basically we’re going to use the create option with comments. So let me clear the terminal and I’m going to go su time image if create, and then comments and now I’m going to type after installing all this software and I got press ENTER and it’s read a bit ers snapshot now. If I run time shift note time shift list, oh sorry, I need to use sudo, you can see. We have two snapshots. This was our first one, and this is the second one I’m going to close this terminal and I’m going to open the graphical user interface and you can see we have the same thing here and we can double click here to type comment, and this is going To be our initial snap shot snapshot, so it’s nice and we know what is what and why these are here.

You can see that our size has changed to four point: six gigabytes, so there’s quite a lot of things changed in our in our system partition or file system alrighty. I am going to now reboot the computer, so I’m going to go and you can do it from the main menu here leave and press restart or be cool like I am and just type reboot. What I’m going to do now is press shift to open the grub menu, but it doesn’t okay.

I think we need to change the configuration of grub. So let’s go sudo nano et Cie default grub, that’s a grub! Let’s give it the password, and here it is grab a timeout style uncomment. This line, if you want unable to save default function, come in the following line and set group default to saved okay Group default is set to saved, but this was disabled and I’m going to allow the generation of recovering boot modes because that’s useful, sometimes, okay, I’m Going to save this file and go update grub now, I need to, of course give it sudo, and it should use this to remake the configuration files.

Now if we reboot, I think we should be good if I’m going to smash their shifts key anyway. Get me that group menu group Group group group, oh yeah, we have the menu now we’ve got the group menu and the absolutely amazing thing about time shift and btrfs is that now we have arch linux snaps and you can see, we have the snapshots that we’ve Created so we can basically boot right into an older version of our operating system.

If we messed something up, we can just select a different snapshot right here. For example, if we removed a working kernel – and we don’t have anything to boot – we can just go here and boot an old version, and this is something really amazing – about btrfs and timeshift snapshots. Now we can go for Advanced Options for men, general Linux, and here we can choose the kernel. So man Gerald Linux, kernel 5.

4 is the default one and we’re going to go for 5.4 13 real time and I’m going to press ENTER and boot this one. Now, every time I boot into btrfs, I get this error and really doesn’t mean anything. You don’t have to press any keys. It’s going to disappear really soon. Okay, so we have logged in let’s open the kernel, dialogue see what we’ve got and yes, we are running the real-time kernel. Well, I hope you found this article to be useful thanks for reading and all the good luck with installing your own Manjaro system and configuring.

It for audio work. It’s not that hard. Many things that I’ve shown you are kinda, like double checking that it’s correctly installed. Now your the mileage mayor of may vary. You know. Every version of the mange road is so that you can download is going to be slightly different and also, if you install using the Manjaro architect or the graphical program, it’s going to give you different results. But overall, it’s really not that bad yeah.

So thanks for reading, I hope you’ve learned something and also big thanks to all fun people who are supporting my work on beat John and litter. If you would like to join them and help keep this show going, please go to patreon.Com/scishow and fur now go install Manjaro and make some music hey I’d like to apologize, because this article has taken away too long to finish alright. So I’d like to apologize, because this article has taken way too long to finish, however, midway through the editing, all the article editing in open source hell broke loose and I had to abandon olive altogether because it became so unstable.

I was unable to proceed and I had to go back to kdenlive, which also isn’t working great and it’s just crashing and hanging, and so it was real hell to finish this article, but I thought it yeah, so I hope you’ll enjoy it. I really hope it’s going to be worth it. Ok, bye,


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