Audio Heaven: Planet CCRMA!
I just want to point out a great site I just found (that probably many of you already know about). I just put this info as a followup to another thread I had going but thought I'd make it more visible.
Background: I have lots of UNIX "user" experience buy no sys admin experience and (until a few weeks ago) no Linux experience. Basically a complete newbie. I'm running Fedora Core 1 on a Pentium 4 PC I built.
My goal was to install Audacity, a really cool audio editor that has some features I needed like "Change Tempo", an incredably useful and equally amazing trick where you can change the duration (length) of an audio track withOUT changing the pitch! I somehow eventually ended up at the fantastic web site: "Planet CCRMA" (planet karma)
Wow! They held me by the hand and helped me install a new Fedora Core 1 low latency kernel, ALSA sound drivers, fine tune my hard drive and install Audacity and several other cool audio apps. Maybe the best part of all was the very first step in all this which was to install "apt" which was then used for all other installs, automagically figuring out dependencies, etc.
I can't recommend this site enough especially if you want to do audio work (especially if you are a major newbie!)
Planet CCRMA -- Extremely Easy to set up!
I just wanted to let people know that I recently installed the Planet CCRMA system on Fedora Core 5, and it is incredibly easy to set up and install. I had a complete Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) set up in about 2 hours!!
I've been a Slackware user for about 8 years, and I had no plans on ever changing distros, but I was having some time consuming problems with Slackware. I was unable to get things just the way I wanted.
My Linux box that I'm using for my DAW is a dual-cpu, dual-core AMD64 system with 2GB of registered RAM, a 74GB SATA Raptor, a 250GB SATA drive, IDE DVD-ROM, IDE DVD-Writer, Nvidia GFORCE 6600GT graphics card with 2 19" LCD Viewsonic Monitors and an RME 9632 Card.
I was having a lot of problems trying to get a low-latency kernel working on this machine. On my single CPU box, installing a kernel with Ingo Molnar's RT patch was absolutely no problem at all. But, to try and get Ingo Molnar's RT patched kernel working on the above mentioned machine, proved to be an impossible task. I tried at least 25 kernel config variations with various 2.6 kernel releases, and each one would hang on boot-up.
If you Google the above problem, with the same or similar hardware, you will find people with the same problem... unresolved.
I tried several disros in both 64bit and 32bit distros, but had the same result.
I tried 2 different versions of Slamd64, 2 versions of Slackware, 64bit Gentoo and a few flavors of Debian (64 & 32bit.
For various reasons, I decided to go with a 32bit distro... mostly because I had some "funky" behavior with some media files in 64bit systems. Also, there are not many video codecs available in 64bit. And yes, I am aware of the various methods to use a 32bit player within a 64bit system, but time was passing and I needed to get a working system without problems.
I was actually a little reluctant to go with Planet CCRMA, because of some past experience with Red Hat. I was never a great fan of Red Hat, but, with Planet CCRMA, it was just so very fast and easy to get a DAW up and running, I'm sorry that I didn't go with that option first. I would have saved myself several MONTHS of frustration!
I highly recommend to anyone who is setting up a Linux based DAW, to check out Planet CCRMA which is built on Fedora. You won't regret it.
There was a minor bug in getting flash working and in getting the Nvidia driver installed, but no big deal in solving it.
Check out Planet CCRMA at http://ccrma.stanford.edu/planetccrma/software/
and subscribe to their email list at:
for helpful advice.
Fernando Lopez-Lezcano, the person in charge of the project is a great guy and he is very helpful if you have a problem.
Like I said before: In about 2 hours, I had a complete DAW setup from scratch in about 2 hours! And that was with a low-latency kernel.
Switched to Gentoo with ProAudio Overlay
I wrote the post above immediately after I installed Planet CCRMA.
And yes, it is a breeze to install, and very quickly too. BUT, after using Planet CCRMA for a while, I came to hate it. Why? Because it is just way too unstable. Several crashes a day was normal for that setup.
And as a Linux user for many years, first with Slackware & now with Gentoo, I became used to a rock solid stable computing environment; something that was NOT the case with Fedora & Planet CCRMA.
I do not recommend Gentoo for a complete beginner to Linux, but if you have been using Linux for a little while and are comfortable setting things up on the command line, then I would HIGHLY recommend Gentoo with the ProAudio Overlay
After using Linux for almost 11 years now, for me, nothing beats Gentoo. EXTREMELY STABLE, and a pleasure to use.
I'll give you some advice to save yourself some problems if you are going to go this route:
Compile your first kernel on the installation.
Do NOT use genkernel. While it makes things easy initially, it MAY cause some problems later on.
When you compile your RT kernel, choose an RT kernel that is from the same branch as your main kernel and copy the config from your main kernel with this command: zcat /proc/config.gz > .config
Here are some instructions that will help in your RT kernel configuration.
The only downside with using Gentoo, is that it will take you several days to complete your installation and configuration, but after that, pure joy!:cool:
With Planet CCRMA, it installs fast & easy, but after that comes the grief.
Anyway, I hope that this post is helpful to someone. I do NOT want to start any sort of "flame war". I just wanted to relate my experiences here and hopefully save people some of the troubles that I have had.
i myself am using fedora 12 and planet ccrma.
i experience zero crashes, and total relaibility...
i do things like run 10 VST's at once, use ardour, hook up my AKAI mpc2000xl to use as a midi sequencer routed into the computer.
i think gentoo is a good OS, which i am just getting into, however
i don't think you should sell fedora/planet ccrma short, by your own admission you had problems with pretty much all the distro's...
i suppose with gentoo you got around your problems by doing a stage1 install..?
Thanks, I'm going to be installing Fedora 12 and Planet CCRMA very soon. Are you running 64-bit or 32-bit?
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