Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 8
single cd install, live cd too, excellent realtime support, tons of music apps out of the box
still relatively unstable, especially if using anything other than the default fluxbox for desktop
Got the day off from work (rained out) and ended up tinkering with one of my primary obsessions, making music under linux! I've been beating my head against a wall from trying to get other debians such as ubuntu, mepis, progeny and even libranet to play nicely with "realtime" audio apps.
During a google search I stumbled across an announcement that release candidate 2 of DeMuDi 1.2.1, a debian based distro optimized for "pro-audio" use, had been released so I gave it a go. Gave the "live cd" version a try too!
Both are very nice, musically speaking. I got my machine down to below 5ms of latency with the included multimedia kernels (SB Live!) and both the live and the "install" versions contain more music apps than I've ever seen in any handful of other distros *combined*!
The text installer, while not glitzy, was easy to follow and the partitioning routines were the easiest I've seen this side of qtparted.
I did have problems getting eth0 to utilize my prefered static IP settings and nameservers but a quick trip through the system with "debconf" straightened that all out in a few minutes.
xhost+localhost straighted out some problems getting mozilla-firefox running from a cli and a few additions to my /etc/apt/sources.list got me up to running a comfortable OS in under an hour.
Release Candidate?! Out of the box this distro is just about perfect, from a musical point of view. As a desktop OS the RC still had some features lacking:
I apt-get'd full KDE 3.3.1 and Gnome 2.8 (default install is Fluxbox) and then even went as far as building the latest nvidia drivers! Followed all that up with XFCE4.
KDE on my install is pretty much a house of cards in a hurricane. It seems everytime I even simply log in to KDE it becomes more and more unstable. Gnome isn't quite that bad but still troublesome enough that I pretty much leave it alone. Fluxbox, the default desktop, runs pretty much flawlessly out of the box and plays nicely with all the software I've tried with it so far. XFCE4 is close to Fluxbox in overall stability and speed and has become my desktop of choice in this release candidate.
The Nvidia drivers worked perfectly and I think game performance (*even though this is a distro intended for multimedia production, NOT gaming!) is at least on par with other debians I have tried.
Running an SB Live! Platinum with "Live Drive" has in the past been quite a challenge to configure correctly for different apps. Mic control combined with dual channels out in particular has always been a real mess. Not so with Demudi! Out of the box everything, including my Mic, worked suprisingly well. If ALSA configuration seems a nightmare to you too you might want to give Demudi a try... It's the *first* distro of any flavor that had all my audio hardware configured to a useable state out of the box.
If you are interested in making music with your computer (or even experimenting with the thought) I can *highly* recommend this distro, even in it's current RC state. Try the live the first, if you like it give the installable version a run too. The current 2.6.11-2 multimedia kernel is worth it's patches in gold for someone serious about sound and should only get better with time and beta testing.
Favorite apps: Seq24 (MIDI sequencer), Ardour (multitrack DAW), Hydrogen (awesome drum machine), qjackctl (powerful GUI'd patch bay for MIDI and audio connections), ZynAddSubFX (simply amazing soft synth), Qsynth (frontend for Fluidsynth sound font based synth)
Wish the distro had: vsti support of some kind *out of the box*, Freewheeling (live performance sampler), RTsynth (the most exceptional string synth I've ever heard on ANY OS), stable alternative to fluxbox.