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Re: [fluid-dev] Major degradation in sound quality & cpu usage going fro

From: Aere Greenway
Subject: Re: [fluid-dev] Major degradation in sound quality & cpu usage going from Ubuntu 11.04 to 11.10
Date: Sat, 05 Nov 2011 14:12:23 -0600

David, et al:

I have not heard back since I reported on performing the test you asked me to run. 

I noticed on the website that there are "0 new bugs". 

What process do I need to go through to have this problem evaluated as to whether it is officially a 'bug' or not? 

To me, this problem kills my future prospects.  The music education package I am poised to put out depends on FluidSynth (actually Qsynth, which uses it). 

I could distribute my package, and people could get all excited about it, but when they installed it themselves (instead of using what comes with the package), they would find that the installed version won't even play the demo-music, even on a fast machine. 

What I had to go through to compile the older version on the current level is not something I could expect a new user of Linux to do. 

There is no path forward if this cannot be fixed.  But of course, those are the chances I take when I attempt to develop something. 

It would be very helpful if I had some indication of whether or not this problem will be addressed, or even looked at.

I am willing to supply MIDI and audio files you could test it with, and verify any fixes. 

Please consider the idea that what I have been doing in the past to avoid under-runs, by configuring fewer simultaneous voices (setting the polyphony parameter to 64, or even 48 on a slower machine), may be a more elegant solution than what has apparently been done in the latest release (probably to address that same problem of under-runs). 

I think my planned product could make a big difference in the way people learn to play (and compose) music, and I am really hoping FluidSynth can be a part of it.  It certainly has been a rock-solid, dependable component up to now. 


Aere Greenway

On Mon, 2011-10-31 at 04:52 +0100, David Henningsson wrote:
2011-10-30 16:08, Aere Greenway skrev:
> David:
> I made a determined attempt to do what you asked, but was 
> unsuccessful.  This is disappointing, since if I had been successful, 
> it would have given me a temporary work-around for the problem, while 
> the actual problem is being fixed.
> On my first attempt to build it, it reported it needed a number of 
> packages before it could do the build.

Oh sorry. Please use the following command:

sudo apt-get build-dep fluidsynth

It will download all build dependencies automatically (well, if there 
aren't any problems, as pointed out below).

> So I painstakingly installed each of the packages listed.  The 
> installation of one of them required that qjackctl be removed, which 
> is an essential part of the software I use.  So I will have to 
> un-install the package that required this when/if I am able to 
> successfully build fluidsynth.
Hmm. There is some stuff in the packaging that switches between jack1 
and jack2, when you install the development package...I wonder if Debian 
got all the packaging pieces right in that process...
> As I installed these missing packages (using Synaptic Package 
> Manager), there were three of them that could not be found (are not 
> available) in the Ubuntu distribution:
> liblash-dev | ladcca-dev    libsndfile-dev
> It appears that the first two are an either-or requirement.

Libsndfile-dev has been replaced by Libsndfile1-dev (so just install 
that one instead). With some research it seems like the liblash-dev has 
been completely removed [1], so you can do the same edit to debian/control.

In short, this was not as easy as expected, sorry for putting you 
through this, but hopefully you learned something in the progress. :-)
> I currently have all of the possible software sources (including 
> source packages) enabled.
> I attempted to build it again anyway, but it reported the above three 
> packages are missing, and would not do the build.
> So do you have any ideas of how to get around this problem in building 
> the earlier version of fluidsynth on my machine?
> Thanks,
> Aere
> On Fri, 2011-10-28 at 07:12 +0200, David Henningsson wrote:
>> On 2011-10-28 03:09, Aere Greenway wrote:
>> >  David:
>> >
>> >  I downloaded the source for the older level of FluidSynth, but didn't
>> >  know how to build it.
>> >
>> >  But I remembered the file structure in Unix (and Linux), and looked for
>> >  the executables in /usr/bin.
>> >
>> >  I use qsynth (which uses FluidSynth). On finding it in the Ubuntu 11.04
>> >  system, and in the 11.10 system, I substituted the different executables
>> >  in each system, and what I found was surprising, from the symptoms I had
>> >  observed.
>> >
>> >  First, the old version (from 11.04) of qsynth on Ubuntu 11.10 also
>> >  failed. The new version (from 11.10) on 11.04 worked fine.
>> >
>> >  I therefore conclude that the cause is in Ubuntu 11.10.
>> Ok, so this is completely wrong. First, FluidSynth's main functionality
>> is in a library (.so) file, so you have not changed FluidSynth by just
>> moving the executables. Second, while ABI breakage is quite rare these
>> days, subtle library differences can still make moving files between
>> distro versions fail. Recompiling the program on the distribution you
>> want to run it on (or in pbuilder, but that's a separate story) is both
>> easier and gives correct results.
>> Here is a mini-howto for how to do that on Ubuntu. Let's assume you have
>> a directory ~/fluidsynth-code, you are in Ubuntu 11.10 and want to
>> compile FluidSynth 1.1.3. First download the source, e g from launchpad
>> by going tohttps://launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/fluidsynth, click the
>> arrow for the selected version, then click to save the files ending with
>> ".dsc", ".debian.tar.gz" and ".orig.tar.bz2".
>> Then execute the following commands:
>> cd ~/fluidsynth-code
>> dpkg-source -x fluidsynth_1.1.3-3.dsc
>> cd fluidsynth-1.1.3
>> dpkg-buildpackage -b
>> This will create files named "fluidsynth_1.1.3-3_i386.deb" and
>> "libfluidsynth1_1.1.3-3_i386.deb" in the ~/fluidsynth-code directory.
>> (Or amd64 instead of i386, if that's what your machine is running.)
>> There will also be a libfluidsynth-dev_1.1.3-3_i386.deb", but you don't
>> need that right now. Now run
>> cd ..
>> sudo dpkg -i fluidsynth_1.1.3-3_i386.deb libfluidsynth1_1.1.3-3_i386.deb
>> ...to install you new packages. After that, just restart qsynth or
>> whatever program is using fluidsynth, and test.
>> To return to the distribution supplied version again run "sudo apt-get
>> install fluidsynth libfluidsynth1"
>> >
>> >  Perhaps the path-lengths with interrupts locked out are too long.
>> >  Perhaps something is causing problems by other means.
>> >
>> >  What I notice on 11.10 (also with the old version of qsynth), is that
>> >  everything seems fine until I try playing one of my sequences with many
>> >  parts, and many simultaneous notes. Within about 30 seconds, things 'go
>> >  bad', and stay bad. After that point, even simple sequences play poorly.
>> >  Even playing notes on the keyboard is bad.
>> This sounds similar to a bug fixed a while ago, here:
>> http://sourceforge.net/apps/trac/fluidsynth/changeset/435/trunk/fluidsynth/src/synth
>> // David
> -- 
> Sincerely,
> Aere



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