CLI/text mode audio and midi multitrack environment

From: laurent schwartz <>
Date: Thu Jun 18 2009 - 16:22:36 CEST
Hy Julien,

i'm interested in CLI and text mode multitrack environment.

I can think of several advantages that CLI and text mode have against
graphical GUI:
  - lighter CPU and memory needed for same tasks
  - highly customizable using command line parameters and/or a configuration
  - can be automated using a scripting language

I've studied some open source tools that have CLI or scripting capabilities
that should be useful for audio/midi multitrack environment:
  - ecasound (audio recording and audio effects),
  - midish (midi sequencing/filtering/recording),
  - timidity and fluidsynth (software synthesizer based on soundfont2).

These tools seems to be pretty good now and stable.

I could point out, trying to use them together, that there are some lack of
features to provide a full audio/midi multitrack environment:
   - audio and midi transport synchronization (recv and send) using jackd
server is not yet supported (midish/ecasound)
   - timidity and fluidsynth do not yet provide a jack channel for each MIDI
instrument (Snare, OpenHihat, FingeredBass, SteelGuitar or at least, not in
an optimized way ...)
   - color signal monitoring for each jackd channel (similar to the
alsamixer text mode output) does not yet exist (as far as i know).

Combined together this features should allow some more exciting experience.

In the meaning time, CLI/text mode multitrack environment could be setup
using an abstract tool such as nama (that provide a frontend to guide the
user through the configuration steps). It could generate some basic
scripting and/or configuration files needed to run a lighter (CPU/RAM) audio
setup for welcomed users.

It seems to me that this component view is more Unix friendly and should
have more advantage against a single and monolithic GUI software.

Friendly Regards,
Received on Thu, 18 Jun 2009 16:22:36 +0200

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