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Hydrogen DAW

3 replies [Last post]
Joined: 09/18/2011

Hey guys, new user here. First I'd just like to say that Hydrogen is simply magnificant. I'm a long time user of NI Battery, and in fact Hydrogen is actually better in a lot of ways.

I've just wondered a lot if there's ever been any plans or discussions about developing hydrogen into its own full fledged DAW? I mean, it already seems to be somewhat headed in that direction, and it already has a lot of the core functionality it would need. It's just something I'd like to see, so I thought I'd bring it up. At any rate I do see a hell of a lot of potential in this project. Keep up the good work!

Joined: 09/06/2011

HI x371322..

I'm not a developer and can't speak for them. However, i doubt that is the plan and actually hope it's not..  Within the linux audio world or should I now say jack audio world (as this encompasses Mac  as well ) .. the theory is generally a bit more modular... 

Hydrogen is an awesome drum machine/drum sampler with a lot of potential as a loop based MIDI sequencer (but I doubt even that is a priority at the moment).. Using JACK it integrates perfectly into Ardour and MusE both of which are DAW environments.. Muse grew out of being a MIDI sequencer and is stronger in that aspect whereas Ardour v2 is a pure audio DAW but is very strong in that capacity.. Ardour v3 (currently in alpha release only for linux) MIDI capable but much stronger in the audio department (you can even integrate all 3 and use MusE for MIDI and ardour for audio and Hydrogen for creating your loops and getting the arrangement done)

Ardour can even be used as a better mixer solution for Hydrogen in a live situation..

It wouldn't make a whole lot of sense for the (small)  Hydrogen development team to create yet another DAW unless they have some vision of something different... .It makes a lot of sense for them to refine and improve what they are doing.. which is more like NI Maschine (although Hydrogen was first).. or an Akai MPC style environment.. but with greater flexibility... So as an overall environment you can sync Hydrogen to a full fledged DAW and/or linear MIDI sequencer, use it or the other sequencer to drive soft synths/samplers, hardware synths or whatever and get the benefits of the larger number of developers across all projects and utilise the strengths of all of the apps.

I don't even think it would make sense for them to develop the sampler section much outside of the hits, small loops and basic instruments philosophy (like an MPC)... as with better MIDI functionality it could better drive Linux Sampler (or other software samplers) which has amazing functionality for complex instruments and long loops e.t.c..

Personally I use an MPC-2000xl as the loop sequencer and sampler with some external synths and fx modules.. this is then synced with MusE and ardour (for production but a hardware mixer for live).. I'm hoping to replace the mpc-2000xl with hydrogen.. in it's current state it would be adequate to replace it in the studio.. actually more flexible than the MPC.. but it's not quite there for live usage.. (due to the requirements for the hardware MIDI devices I use..)



thijs's picture
Joined: 04/20/2010

HI x371322

i'm afraid that Allan is right ... the devel team is quite small and this only allows for a step-by-step evolution of Hydrogen.  What you are talking about classifies as a 'REvolution' IMHO ;-)

And like Alan points out there are other apps that are much more suited as DAW than hydrogen.

I'm not sure what you want to do with Hydrogen, but maybe using the 'create per-instrument outputs' option  (see might be what you are looking for ?  that way all the instruments get their own output, and these outputs can then be connected to Ardour.  This gives you a lot more flexibility (+automation of FX and all the other great stuff that you can do in Ardour)

but still : thanx for your input !




Joined: 09/18/2011

Thanks for the replies. And don't mind me too much, just brainstorming. : ) Coming from Logic on the Mac, I'm just so used to everything being in the same application. I'm just going to have to take the time to get used to the new work flow.

And thanks thijs for the tip about multiple outputs. I hadn't noticed that feature just yet, so that's actually a really big help!