The Null Device

Pd rocks

After being dragged along to some laptop electronica performances by Peter, I've started playing around in earnest with Pd; it's a fun piece of software to play with. With an audio in socket and the built-in objects (and possibly some optional LADSPA plug-ins), it's possible to make a Linux-based PC into a customisable bank of effects pedals for whatever you plug into it (i.e., a guitar, microphone, Casio keyboard, electronic bagpipe chanter, whatever). Now all I'd need is a decently fast Linux-capable laptop.

Aside: someone should write a WINE-based wrapper of some sort for running Windows VST plugins under Linux and interfacing them with Linux audio software. It shouldn't be too hard; one way would be to write a very simple Windows VST host which takes audio input, runs it through a plugin rack, and sends it to output, and then use WINE to wrap it in such a way that the input and output goes to FIFOs in /tmp or somesuch. A better alternative would be to actually wrap the plugins within the host application, giving them just enough Windows GDI calls to draw their user interfaces and such. (After all, the DSP code should be fairly portable.)

There are 4 comments on "Pd rocks":

Posted by: scott http:// Mon Dec 9 00:32:35 2002

Posted by: acb Mon Dec 9 01:41:57 2002

It looks to do the same thing as plugin~.

Posted by: gjw Mon Dec 9 01:47:29 2002

I couldn't get a single sound out of PD when I tried it. But they should start making VST plugins available for Linux - after all, they're available for Windows and Mac. It should just be a matter of the developers compiling them as a .so instead of as a .dll, and having software that can access the API. As usual, Linux is about 5 years behind in audio software....

Posted by: acb Mon Dec 9 02:12:17 2002

It's not that easy. Steinberg refused to allow an open-source port of the (freely downloadable) VST SDK, which is why we have LADSPA (which is a pretty daft name, btw; it sounds like a paedophile group or something).

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