Ardour in 2012: what to look forward to

As 2011 draws to a close, I wanted to point people toward the future with a brief summary of what to expect from Ardour in 2012.

Ardour3 Beta 1a released

After a furious 3 months (more than 600 code commits), the Ardour team is pleased to announce the release of Ardour 3.0 Beta 1. This is the first version of Ardour 3 that has support for OS X (Intel only for now, sorry PPC users), where you will find fully functional AudioUnit instrument support among all the other goodies that Ardour 3 brings. The (very long) list below documents the other many changes, including support for Linux native VSTs, an initial new version of Freesound browsing, some shinier (and perhaps out of place) new buttons, and a metric ton of bug fixes and improvements.
This is an update of the beta1 release from earlier today. It corrects several packaging errors in beta1, and by coincidence contains a couple of new features and bug fixes. If you downloaded beta1, please upgrade to this version.
Read more below for full details, including some notes on the OSX release.

Ardour 2.8.12 released (with support for OS X Lion)

After a year in which Ardour 2 has seen little focused development due to the work on Ardour 3, the release of OS X Lion finally created the motivation to consolidate the accumulation of patches and improvements and release 2.8.12. The list of changes is suprisingly long for something supposedly in maintainance-only mode, and its a good list. The most important changes are probably Lion support, the arrival of binary packages for Linux (these should run on any Linux system, with no dependencies on your existing system libraries), and major fixes to the way Ardour handles latency and the alignment of newly recorded material.

Please note that Ardour now requires the latest JACK latency API which can be found in JACK1 0.120.2 or JACK2 1.9.7 (on OS X, JackOSX 0.88) or any later versions. Using Ardour 2.8.12 with older versions of JACK will lead to random crashes and generally bad behaviour. There's no reason not to upgrade JACK if you haven't already done so.

Full details on the changes and fixes can be found below...

Issues with Subscriptions (Fixed)

There have been issues in recent months with people subscribing (providing a monthly payment of US$1, US$4 or US$10 to help support continued development of Ardour). The problem was discovered today - the module we use to track subscription payments assumes the use of a single PayPal account, but in order to utilize PayPal's micropayments option, uses two different accounts with PayPal. It didn't prevent subscriptions from working, but did not know about them. This has affected all new subscriptions since I started using the micropayments system a few months ago.

The issue is now fixed, and I'm working with everyone affected by it to get them correctly registered on

Ardour 3.0 alpha 10 released

The final alpha of the Ardour 3 release plans is now available. The list of changes is long, but it is dominated by bug fixes (some rather significant) and cosmetics, with no new features except for the ability to rename sessions. The full list is available below, as always.

The next release will be beta1, and will be available for OS X as well as Linux

Ready-to-run binary packages can be found here:

Read more below for the full description of changes.

SVN Revision 10k Approaching

Sometime in the next 12-36 hours, its very likely that Ardour will see the 10,000th commit to the SVN repository. That's 10 thousand changes to the source code and build systems that make up Ardour2, Ardour3 and Mixbus. I'm not sure how to celebrate this, so if you have any ideas, post them here.

Sticklers for detail will want to know that there were 1352 commits to the CVS repository on sourceforge that preceded's SVN repository. So strictly speaking the upcoming milestone has already been passed. But don't spoil our fun!

Ardour 3.0 alpha 9 released

Ardour 3.0 alpha9 is now out. There's a nice new feature for people using 1 MIDI device to record multiple tracks, and some very necessary fixes for track visibility, height control and general layout in the editor window, plus the usual selection of crashing and missing functionality bug fixes. I expect a few glitches with the new stuff, so please do leave feedback via the bug tracker or the ardour-users email list (not the forums) .

Ready-to-run binary packages can be found here:

For full details, please read more below ...

Ardour 3.0 alpha 8 released

3.0 alpha8 is now available. Its not a huge set of changes, but does include fixes for several crashing bugs. One important thing to note up-front is that some changes introduced in alpha7 have seriously broken a number of aspects of automation track display and editing (this includes MIDI Controller data). Fixing these issues (not being able to edit the data, track heights and visibility being wrong) will be the first priority when I start working on alpha9 next week.

Ready-to-run binary packages can be found here:

Ardour 3.0 alpha 7 released

Hot on the heels of alpha6, here is the 7th alpha release of Ardour 3.0. This fixes a major regression related to panning in alpha6, adds MIDI note selection channel editing, and a variety of other fixes and improvements (See below for more details). Ready-to-run binary packages can be found here:

Ardour 3.0 alpha 6 released

As usual, somewhat later than expected, but here is the 6th alpha release of Ardour 3.0. A little bit of new functionality here, a bit of GUI polishing, and quite a few crashing bugs fixed. Ready-to-run binary packages can be found here:

Note: with this release, the session file format has been altered. The changes should cause no data loss but automation track visibility may be different when loading sessions created with old ardour3 versions.

Read more below for full details ...