problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces

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problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces

udaemon
dear list members,

I have a question on using zita-bridge with jack2, obviously I'm
missing some detail (?).

I'm trying to get two usb soundcards working as inputs for recording.
as usual, I start jackd via qjackctl with one of them, say, the
soundcraft notepad12fx as hw-device (with -r 48000 -p 512 -n 2).
now, I want to add the 2nd interface, my zoom h4. in a terminal I put

#zita-a2j -d hw:H4 -r 48000 -p 512 -n 2

I get

#Starting synchronisation.

and I can see the zita-bridge both in the graph window of qjackctl and
in my daw (reaper).
the problem is that I don't get any signal from the device connected by
the zita-bridge. I have also tried to change both devices - without
success. furthermore, I've  tried to leave some of the parameters (-p
and -n) out.

am I missing something?

thank you very much for any suggestion!

have a good day!
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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces

Len Ovens
On Mon, 16 Dec 2019, [hidden email] wrote:

> #zita-a2j -d hw:H4 -r 48000 -p 512 -n 2

does the # mean you are running things as root? Jack and zita should only
ever be run as a regular user and never as root/system.

> and I can see the zita-bridge both in the graph window of qjackctl and
> in my daw (reaper).
> the problem is that I don't get any signal from the device connected by
> the zita-bridge. I have also tried to change both devices - without
> success. furthermore, I've  tried to leave some of the parameters (-p
> and -n) out.

By no signal you mean there is a mic on the input but the audio does not
show up? (The meters on the device itself show level?)
Does the signal ever show up on each device A) when not running jack? B)
as the sole jack master?
Is the device you are using as jack master also the device you are using
for monitoring? (output to speakers/heagphones?)

--
Len Ovens
www.ovenwerks.net
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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces

udaemon
dear Len, thanks for replying!

Am Montag, den 16.12.2019, 08:18 -0800 schrieb Len Ovens:
> On Mon, 16 Dec 2019, [hidden email] wrote:
>
> > #zita-a2j -d hw:H4 -r 48000 -p 512 -n 2
>
> does the # mean you are running things as root? Jack and zita should
> only
> ever be run as a regular user and never as root/system.

no, # was just to identify the following as code/terminal output. sorry
for the confusion, now I'm aware I should better use $ for that.

> > and I can see the zita-bridge both in the graph window of qjackctl
> > and
> > in my daw (reaper).
> > the problem is that I don't get any signal from the device
> > connected by
> > the zita-bridge. I have also tried to change both devices - without
> > success. furthermore, I've  tried to leave some of the parameters
> > (-p
> > and -n) out.
>
> By no signal you mean there is a mic on the input but the audio does
> not
> show up? (The meters on the device itself show level?)

exactly, that there's a signal (physically) incoming is indicated in
the 2nd device (and also in the 1st, as usual) but not in the daw, i.
e. its meters (but in the 1st). if I record from both devices, only
1st/master device's tracks have the signals/content, but the tracks of
the 2nd/slave device are empty.

> Does the signal ever show up on each device A) when not running jack?
> B)
> as the sole jack master?

a) yes, they normally do.
b) yes.

> Is the device you are using as jack master also the device you are
> using
> for monitoring? (output to speakers/heagphones?)

yes, by now, the master device is, as usual, the monitoring device. for
the moment I'm just focussing on the inputs.

> --
> Len Ovens
> www.ovenwerks.net

I hope that helps. thanks again!
christoph
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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces

udaemon
hi,

still concerned with the issue that zita-a2j doesn't work properly on
my computers (I’ve also tried it with another machine, both run arch
linux) I enabled zita-a2j in verbose mode which tells me:

playback : not enabled
capture  :
  nchan  : 2
  fsamp  : 48000
  fsize  : 256
  nfrag  : 2
  format : S16_LE

whilst "playback" is indicated to be disabled, "capture" lacks a state,
at all.

could this be a useful hint for solving the problem?

I have uninstalled zita-ajbridge, restartet and reinstalled, but the
problem persists.

by the way, I tried also if playback works (zita-j2a), but in the same
manner it doesn't, i. e. zita-j2a shows up in jack’s graph and in the
daw, but there is no signal.

thanks in advance for any suggestion.

christoph


Am Montag, den 16.12.2019, 19:28 +0100 schrieb
[hidden email]:

> dear Len, thanks for replying!
>
> Am Montag, den 16.12.2019, 08:18 -0800 schrieb Len Ovens:
> > On Mon, 16 Dec 2019, [hidden email] wrote:
> >
> > > #zita-a2j -d hw:H4 -r 48000 -p 512 -n 2
> >
> > does the # mean you are running things as root? Jack and zita
> > should
> > only
> > ever be run as a regular user and never as root/system.
>
> no, # was just to identify the following as code/terminal output.
> sorry
> for the confusion, now I'm aware I should better use $ for that.
>
> > > and I can see the zita-bridge both in the graph window of
> > > qjackctl
> > > and
> > > in my daw (reaper).
> > > the problem is that I don't get any signal from the device
> > > connected by
> > > the zita-bridge. I have also tried to change both devices -
> > > without
> > > success. furthermore, I've  tried to leave some of the parameters
> > > (-p
> > > and -n) out.
> >
> > By no signal you mean there is a mic on the input but the audio
> > does
> > not
> > show up? (The meters on the device itself show level?)
>
> exactly, that there's a signal (physically) incoming is indicated in
> the 2nd device (and also in the 1st, as usual) but not in the daw, i.
> e. its meters (but in the 1st). if I record from both devices, only
> 1st/master device's tracks have the signals/content, but the tracks
> of
> the 2nd/slave device are empty.
>
> > Does the signal ever show up on each device A) when not running
> > jack?
> > B)
> > as the sole jack master?
>
> a) yes, they normally do.
> b) yes.
>
> > Is the device you are using as jack master also the device you are
> > using
> > for monitoring? (output to speakers/heagphones?)
>
> yes, by now, the master device is, as usual, the monitoring device.
> for
> the moment I'm just focussing on the inputs.
>
> > --
> > Len Ovens
> > www.ovenwerks.net
>
> I hope that helps. thanks again!
> christoph
> _______________________________________________
> Linux-audio-user mailing list
> [hidden email]
> https://lists.linuxaudio.org/listinfo/linux-audio-user
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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces

Fons Adriaensen-3
On Tue, Dec 17, 2019 at 11:32:44AM +0100, [hidden email] wrote:

> still concerned with the issue that zita-a2j doesn't work properly on
> my computers (I’ve also tried it with another machine, both run arch
> linux) I enabled zita-a2j in verbose mode which tells me:
>
> playback : not enabled
> capture  :
>   nchan  : 2
>   fsamp  : 48000
>   fsize  : 256
>   nfrag  : 2
>   format : S16_LE
>
> whilst "playback" is indicated to be disabled, "capture" lacks a state,
> at all.

What do you mean by 'lacks a state' ?

Is there any output after the lines you quoted, like

fons@zita1:~> zita-a2j -d hw:1,0 -v
playback : not enabled
capture  :
  nchan  : 2
  fsamp  : 48000
  fsize  : 256
  nfrag  : 2
  format : S32_LE
Starting synchronisation.
  -0.151   1.000057     0
  -0.007   1.000034   326
  -0.053   1.000046   327
  -0.114   1.000094   327
   0.128   1.000019   328

etc. ?

This problem is quite mysterious...
I've got zita-j2a running on one of my machines at work, with
a Digico 48-ch MADI interface for two months or so without
interruption. Use it almost every day, no problems...

> I have uninstalled zita-ajbridge, restartet and reinstalled, but the
> problem persists.

Could you try jaaa -A or japa -A with the same sound card and
see if you get any signal in or out ?

Ciao,

--
FA

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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces

udaemon
hi Fons,

thanks for your reply!

Am Donnerstag, den 19.12.2019, 21:35 +0100 schrieb Fons Adriaensen:

> On Tue, Dec 17, 2019 at 11:32:44AM +0100, [hidden email]
> wrote:
>
> > still concerned with the issue that zita-a2j doesn't work properly
> > on
> > my computers (I’ve also tried it with another machine, both run
> > arch
> > linux) I enabled zita-a2j in verbose mode which tells me:
> >
> > playback : not enabled
> > capture  :
> >   nchan  : 2
> >   fsamp  : 48000
> >   fsize  : 256
> >   nfrag  : 2
> >   format : S16_LE
> >
> > whilst "playback" is indicated to be disabled, "capture" lacks a
> > state,
> > at all.
>
> What do you mean by 'lacks a state' ?

I mean that in the verbose output above there’s nothing mentioned after
the entry "capture". but in the output you pasted below it’s the same,
so this obviously is the normal behaviour.

> Is there any output after the lines you quoted, like
>
> fons@zita1:~> zita-a2j -d hw:1,0 -v
> playback : not enabled
> capture  :
>   nchan  : 2
>   fsamp  : 48000
>   fsize  : 256
>   nfrag  : 2
>   format : S32_LE
> Starting synchronisation.
>   -0.151   1.000057     0
>   -0.007   1.000034   326
>   -0.053   1.000046   327
>   -0.114   1.000094   327
>    0.128   1.000019   328
>
> etc. ?

no, on both my computers there’s nothing printed after "Starting
synchronization".

> This problem is quite mysterious...
> I've got zita-j2a running on one of my machines at work, with
> a Digico 48-ch MADI interface for two months or so without
> interruption. Use it almost every day, no problems...
>
> > I have uninstalled zita-ajbridge, restartet and reinstalled, but
> > the
> > problem persists.
>
> Could you try jaaa -A or japa -A with the same sound card and
> see if you get any signal in or out ?

I tried japa with that soundcard (Zoom H4n with usb connection):

[christoph@x270 ~]$ japa -A -d hw:1
playback :
  nchan  : 2
  fsamp  : 48000
  fsize  : 1024
  nfrag  : 2
  format : S16_LE
capture  :
  nchan  : 2
  fsamp  : 48000
  fsize  : 1024
  nfrag  : 2
  format : S16_LE
synced
Connected to ALSA with 2 inputs and 2 outputs

from the speaker of the device I can hear constant noise and its meters
show constant input at around -10 db. in the little window which is
opened I can also see some movements in the diagram when I gently tap
the  device’s microphones. so, yes: there’s plenty of signal.

Maybe it’s related to my distribution, arch? I have no clue.
in alsamixer there’s nothing to adjust for the H4n, it says: this
device has no controls.

so, indeed mysterious.

> Ciao,
>
ciao & thanks & have a good day!
christoph
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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces

Fons Adriaensen-3
In reply to this post by Fons Adriaensen-3
Hi Christoph,

> I mean that in the verbose output above there’s nothing mentioned after
> the entry "capture". but in the output you pasted below it’s the same,
> so this obviously is the normal behaviour.

It is. The following lines imply that it is enabled :-)

> > Is there any output after the lines you quoted, like
> >
> > fons@zita1:~> zita-a2j -d hw:1,0 -v
> > playback : not enabled
> > capture  :
> >   nchan  : 2
> >   fsamp  : 48000
> >   fsize  : 256
> >   nfrag  : 2
> >   format : S32_LE
> > Starting synchronisation.
> >   -0.151   1.000057     0
> >   -0.007   1.000034   326
> >   -0.053   1.000046   327
> >   -0.114   1.000094   327
> >    0.128   1.000019   328
> >
> > etc. ?
>
> no, on both my computers there’s nothing printed after "Starting
> synchronization".

I suspect your system isn't configured to allow normal users running
real-time threads. Zita-ajbridge will fail (silently, and yes that
*is* a bug) if that is the case.

The way to enable real-time for normal (non-root) users has changed
on Archlinux some time ago, it now involves the realtime package
(see the archwiki for details).

I'm on Arch too but I'm still using the 'old' method without the
realtime package. This just involves putting some lines in
/etc/security/limits.conf:

@audio          -       rtprio          95
@audio          -       memlock         unlimited

and making sure you are in the 'audio' group.

If you do this you need to re-login after making the changes.

AFAIK the realtime package is doing the same, but using a
different group.

Ciao,

--
FA

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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces -- some extra info

Fons Adriaensen-3
In reply to this post by Fons Adriaensen-3
Hi Christoph,

Some extra info:

In case your system does allow real-time, it could be
that the maximum priority is set too low.

Zita-ajbridge will run the thread talking to the ALSA
device with a priority that is 10 higher than Jack's
callback threads. So if your jack is configured for
e.g. 80, and the system limit is 85, zita-ajbridge
will fail.

Ciao,

--
FA


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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces -- some extra info

udaemon
Hi Fons,

thanky you very much for your help!
now it works.

I was already in the realtime and also in the audio group, in fact, I
had modified limits.conf manually when setting up the system, and
later, I guess, had also installed the realtime-privileges package.

also I checked the priority settings of the jack daemon. Somewhere I
read  priority should be between 50 and 70 or so. so I had this set
already, too; maybe not for every soundcard, though.
but, what also seems to be important - quite logically, if I read your
recent hints on the realtime-settings - is to tell the jack daemon to
run in realtime mode. Here, in qjackctl the related checkbox was
unchecked; I did that because I recently tried to start linux with the
arch stock kernel instead of the realtime kernel, just to see how this
works with my audio usage. And I thought if I don’t run the rt-kernel,
I have to uncheck the realtime-setting in qjackctl, which may be a
misconception (?).
now, with it enabled, zita-ajbridge works very well.

again, thank you very much!
christoph





Am Freitag, den 20.12.2019, 21:49 +0100 schrieb Fons Adriaensen:

> Hi Christoph,
>
> Some extra info:
>
> In case your system does allow real-time, it could be
> that the maximum priority is set too low.
>
> Zita-ajbridge will run the thread talking to the ALSA
> device with a priority that is 10 higher than Jack's
> callback threads. So if your jack is configured for
> e.g. 80, and the system limit is 85, zita-ajbridge
> will fail.
>
> Ciao,
>
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Re: problem with zita-bridge to use two recording interfaces -- some extra info

Fons Adriaensen-3
In reply to this post by Fons Adriaensen-3
Hi Christoph,:

> ... And I thought if I don’t run the rt-kernel,
> I have to uncheck the realtime-setting in qjackctl, which may
> be a misconception (?).

It is. The standard kernel runs RT threads quite well. I've been
using it on at least 20 Arch machines all doing audio work, and
some of them quite heavy stuff with dozens of Jack clients and
64 channels in and out. No problems at all.

Many of the original RT patches have been incorporated in the
standard kernel for years now.

You may need the RT kernel if you use very short audio periods,
some people go as low as 16 frames.

Ciao,

--
FA

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