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IDProjectCategoryView StatusLast Update
0007753ardourfeaturespublic2019-07-11 01:29
Reporternaught101 Assigned To 
PrioritynormalSeverityminorReproducibilityhave not tried
Status newResolutionopen 
Summary0007753: Plugin containers
DescriptionSplitting from comments at

I would be really nice to be able to have plugin containers that could be saved as presets/templates for re-use. Two main types of containers would be useful:

 - A "chain" container, that groups a set of sequential plugins (or layers).
- A "layers" container, that groups a set of parallel plugins (or chains).

Sub-types of layer containers might include:

- Standard: all inputs are copied to each layer inside the layers container.
- MIDI-split: e.g. a different plugin/chain on each note - very useful for drum machines, but perhaps also tonal multi-sampling.
- EQ-split: each layer receives different different bands of an incoming audio signal - useful for multiband processing on a bus.
    - Other audio splits, such as Mid-Side split.
- Selector: one layer is active at a time, and selection is automatable/controllable.

It would be nice if layers/chains had their own fader.
TagsNo tags attached.



2019-04-21 16:22

developer   ~0020638

You can save sequential plugin chains (using pin connections also to some degree parallel ones) in a route template.

If you want to treat every midi note individually, you would rather use a bus for every midi node you need. Each bus has a midi filter plugin (to select the relevant note) at the top followed by the plugin chain for the individual drum. Then you have an individual fader for each chain. Each chain you can set up in a route template.

What you can't do is set up all the busses by one action. So far you need to set up every individual bus and connect it. Maybe you could do that with a lua script.


2019-04-22 01:56

reporter   ~0020641

Do you mean what you get when you right-click on a mixer strip (in the mixer only, not in the editor), and select "save as template"? I can't figure out how to add those back as a new track..

If that's what you mean, then yes, that is probably sufficient for a single chain, in practice. To my mind a chain is semantically different from a mixer strip template though. And once you combine chains with layers, it becomes even more useful to have a distinction, I think. It should be easy to simply drop a chain of plugins into a slot (mixer strip, or container layer), and have the slot manage the routing.

But yes, of single chains, this is mostly a UI issue, I guess.


2019-04-22 08:42

developer   ~0020642

When you add a new track or bus it lets you choose the template, I think.

Both what you describe, chains and layers, are implementable as busses. You can route from one bus into another. That's a chain of what you call (predefined) plugin containers. You can also route from one bus into several and then mix them together again. That's the layers.


2019-04-22 11:22

reporter   ~0020643

Ah yeah - the templates only appear after a restart.

Yes, I agree, this could be managed with the current bus and routing systems. But the UI is painful, and much, much slower and more convoluted than in could be.

In bitwig or ableton, you can add a drum rack/machine, and in 1-2 clicks, you have the equivalent of a midi-note routed bus, 128 tracks (which can each have their own chain of instruments and effects, plus a master group bus that can have further effects. You also have individual note filtering on each of those tracks, so each note only triggers an individual channel. That would be annoying to set up with Ardour, even with only 8-16 drum pads. Also, AFAICS, there is no way to save a group of busses and tracks as a template, so you can't even set this up as a 1 click solution in ardour after all that work. I guess you could do it as a project template, but what if you want to have two racks in one project?

There are lots of potential ways to deal with this, I guess. being able to save a group of tracks/busses as templates would be a great start, and then there could be a default group template. Perhaps this could already be done in the same way that the "live-band" template does it, but I don't understand how that works, or how to create something like that.

The ableton/bitwig approach is also very nice because the UI is incredibly compact compared to the equivalent in ardour - you just basically have one track in the editor and mixer, but all of the individual layers can act as sub-channels (you can route to/from them individually - nice for side-chaining, and you can mix them independently).

Issue History

Date Modified Username Field Change
2019-04-21 13:51 naught101 New Issue
2019-04-21 16:22 johmue-eo Note Added: 0020638
2019-04-22 01:56 naught101 Note Added: 0020641
2019-04-22 08:42 johmue-eo Note Added: 0020642
2019-04-22 11:22 naught101 Note Added: 0020643