Frequently Asked Questions
These FAQs apply to the latest version of AudioMulch except for those in the section at the end which apply to AudioMulch 1.0 only.
If you have a question that isn't answered below, please search the AudioMulch help file which contains documentation for every feature of AudioMulch - to view it, go to the Help menu inside AudioMulch, or browse a web version of the help file here. You can also ask for help in the forums or on the mulch-discuss mailing list. If you can't find the answer elsewhere, feel free to email email@example.com.
Operating System Compatibility
Q: Does AudioMulch 2.0 work with Windows Vista, Windows 7 or any other specific version of Windows?
A: AudioMulch 2.0 works with Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7. It does not work with Windows 98. Windows 2000 is not officially supported but it works with a few minor display glitches. If you find that it doesn't work please report it as a bug to firstname.lastname@example.org and it will be fixed.
Q: Is AudioMulch available for the Macintosh?
A: Yes! AudioMulch is now available for Intel-based Macintosh computers. AudioMulch 1.0 was for Windows only.
Q: What about Linux?
A: AudioMulch is not available natively for Linux. AudioMulch runs with the latest version of WINE (tested with WINE 1.2, on a Ubuntu 10.04 32-bit system). You may need to switch AudioMulch to use DirectSound on the Audio Driver page of the Settings dialog box (Edit menu > Settings). If you experience problems try upgrading to the latest version of WINE.
Q: I have a desktop computer at home and a laptop that I use for performances. If I buy a license can I use it only on one of my computers or on both? Also, can I install a single licence on both Windows and Mac OSX on a single computer (under VMWare, Parallels, BootCamp etc.)?
A: The answer to all of the above questions is: yes, you can. For single user licences you are entitled to install AudioMulch on any of your computers and/or multiple OSes on the same computer. However you may only run AudioMulch on one computer at a time. If you run AudioMulch on multiple computers at the same time then you need to purchase a licence for each simultaneous use. When you install AudioMulch these conditions are spelt out in detail in the End User Licence Agreement (EULA). The EULA is legally binding and should be consulted for the final word on licencing issues. For classroom education networks the conditions are slightly different - please consult the EULA and contact email@example.com for more information. A more detailed response to these questions can be found in this forum discussion thread here.
Q: Does my computer need to be connected to the internet when I enter the licence key?
A: No, your computer doesn't need to be connected to the internet. Your licence key is a 36 letter/number code which can be typed in to any computer or cut-and-pasted from the email we send you when you purchase a licence. There is no "on line activation" required.
Q: Can I sell, trade, gift or transfer my licence to someone else?
A: You can't sell or transfer your license. You can, however, purchase an AudioMulch licence for someone else as a gift.
An AudioMulch licence is granted to a single person. Like a driver's licence, once granted it cannot be transferred to another person. If you wish to purchase a licence for someone else as a gift we will be happy to help. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org at the time of purchase and we will issue a licence key to the right person.
Q: Is there a student price for AudioMulch?
A: Sorry, no there isn't. Volume discounts are available to education institutions purchasing 5 or more licences, but there is no single-user student price.
Q: I have lost my licence key. Can you retrieve it for me please?
A: We can retrieve your key but we reserve the right to charge for this service in the future, so please keep a printed record of your licence keys. To retrieve your key send an email to email@example.com. Before you email us try one of the following:
- If you purchased licence key insurance from Share-it or Kagi please contact them or use their system to retrieve your key.
- If you still have AudioMulch 1.0 installed on your computer you can find your version 1.0 licence key in the Registry using RegEdit. From the Windows Start menu choose Run, type regedit, click OK, browse to: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Ross Bencina\AudioMulch\1.0\Registered User.
Q: When I press the Play button on the toolbar AudioMulch makes sound, but when I press the Stop button, the sound keeps on going. Is this a bug?
A: The short answer is no, it's not a bug. The transport controls on the toolbar (Play, Stop, Return to Start) control the AudioMulch clock. The clock is used by clock dependant contraptions such as the Drums and LoopPlayer, it's also used by Automation. Pressing the Stop button will stop the clock, and hence stop clock dependant contraptions from making sound. However, many contraptions in AudioMulch are free running -- they don't depend on the clock to make sound. Examples of free running contraptions include TestGen, 10Harmonics and SoundIn. Pressing stop won't stop these contraptions from making sound. You might reasonably ask: then why did they start making sound when I pressed Play? The answer is that pressing Play not only starts the clock, but also activates real-time audio if it's inactive. You can activate and deactivate real-time audio independently of the clock by using the Activate Audio (speaker button) on the toolbar. The stop button never stops real-time audio because stopping the clock shouldn't stop all sound -- reverb tails should be allowed to decay, and some aspects of your processing may not depend on the clock at all.
Q: The AudioMulch audio output is popping, crackling and/or glitching. What's the story?
A: First, check the CPU Load indicator in the bottom left of the status bar (make the Status Bar visible from the view menu if it's hidden). If the CPU Load indicator is always red, or often above 80%, your computer may not be fast enough to synthesise the current document in real time, try using less contraptions (see "I want to make my patches more complex but the CPU load keeps maxing out, any suggestions?"). If the CPU Load is not red the audio buffer settings may not be optimal for your soundcard and CPU speed. Try increasing the Buffer size and / or the Number of buffers in the Audio Driver tab of the Settings / Preferences dialog box accessible from the Edit menu. See the Settings / Preferences Dialog Box reference in the help file for more details. There is an Optimising Real-Time Performance section of the help file which you will find helpful. On Windows, you should also consider using ASIO drivers if you aren't already. ASIO4ALL is a good generic ASIO driver.
Q: I want to make my patches more complex but the CPU load keeps maxing out, any suggestions?
A: One technique for creating more complex sonic textures with AudioMulch is to create something and then record it out as a wave file either using the SoundOut contraption, or the Export to Sound File item in the File menu. Then, load this wave file back into AudioMulch either using the LoopPlayer (for clock synced loops) or the SoundIn or FilePlayer (for longer textures). Then you can overlay or reprocess more audio, save it out to disk and repeat...
Q: When I try to use the SoundIn or AuxIn contraptions to process a soundcard input (Mic or Line In) there is an echo, or I can always hear the unprocessed sound. How do I fix things so only the AudioMulch processed output can be heard?
A: Some soundcards are set up to pass the uneffected audio to the output. Usually you can adjust this by muting the playback level of the Mic and/or Line In in the Windows Volume Control. You can access the Windows Volume Control from within AudioMulch by selecting Volume Control... from the View menu. It's also available from the Windows Sound control panel. The Windows Volume Control is a little confusing, it has two display modes: 'Playback', and 'Recording' - you can select between these modes by selecting Properties from the Options menu. To overcome the problem described in the question you need to mute the Playback level. Adjusting the Recording level will change the level of the signal that reaches AudioMulch. Some soundcards (such as some SoundBlaster soundcards) have their own mixer or configuration application - if one is available you should try to use this instead of the Windows Volume control.
Q: AudioMulch seems to be working fine, the VU meters light up, but I don't hear anything. Any ideas?
A: Check that you have the correct soundcard devices and channels selected for the SoundOut contraption (and AuxOuts if you have a multichannel sound card). Do this by selecting Settings... from the View menu, and looking at the Audio Output Tab. While you're in the Settings Dialog make sure that the Audio Input tab looks OK too. Another thing to check is that the Wave Playback level is turned up in the Windows Volume Control (choose Volume Control... from the View menu within AudioMulch).
Q: I have programmed a number of different drum patterns and stored them in separate presets, how do I sequence them into a song?
A: You have a few options depending on whether you want to work entirely within AudioMulch, or use other tools as well: (1) Right-click on the preset button on the Drums' contraption editor and choose Automate. Insert and move preset change points on the Automation time line. (2) export each pattern as a wave file using the Export to Sound File... item in the File menu, and then assemble the sequence in a sound editing program. (3) Synchronise AudioMulch to a separate MIDI sequencer using a loopback device and change patterns using control change messages (see "How can I route MIDI messages from other software into AudioMulch?").
Q: How can I route MIDI messages from other software into AudioMulch?
A: On Windows you can user MIDI Yoke (Windows 2000/XP). It provides virtual MIDI devices which can be used to send MIDI signals from one application to another. This can be useful if you want to control AudioMulch from other sequencing software, or use a program like KeyKit, ArtWonk, Pd, or Building Blocks to generate or process MIDI messages for controlling AudioMulch.
Q: I'd like to use a MIDI controller to switch between effects during my live performance, how can I do this?
A: The easiest way is to use a Matrix contraption (from the Mixers category) to set up presets with different effects routing combinations. Then assign a MIDI controller to the Matrix's preset so you can switch between different routings from MIDI. You can read more about the Matrix contraptions and MIDI control in the AudioMulch help file.
Q: I've heard of VST plugins, but I don't really know much about them. What's the story?
A: VST plugins are (usually small) pieces of software that you can use in conjunction with AudioMulch and other applications to add new sound generation and processing functionality. In AudioMulch, VST plugins can be used just like built-in contraptions. You can use VST plugins either by placing them in the VSTPlugins directory inside the AudioMulch installation directory (usually under C:\Program Files) or by setting AudioMulch to use another application's plugins directory from the VST tab of the Settings dialog (accesible from the Edit menu). Some VST plugins are commercial and must be purchased, however there are many VST plugins which software developers offer free of charge. To get started try visiting sites like Database Audio, K-v-R, and Smart Electronix. You can read more about VST plugins in the AudioMulch help file.
Q: How can I sequence or control VST instrument plugins from within AudioMulch?
A: AudioMulch doesn't provide any built-in MIDI sequencing functionality. You can route MIDI between VST and AU plugins using the patcher, so it is possible to use MIDI sequencing plugins such as those from Sugar Bytes and Five12. VST instruments can also be controlled from an external MIDI source such as another MIDI sequencer, or a hardware MIDI controller keyboard. Midi routing can be performed using AudioMulch's MidiIn contraptions. You can select which MIDI channel(s) a plugin will receive from the plugin contraption's node in the Parameter Modulation dialog, available from the Control menu. For further information see the question "How can I route MIDI from other software to AudioMulch?"
Q: How can I access a VST plugin's factory programs?
A: Right-clicking in the title area of a VST plugin contraption editor will display a popup menu which includes a "VST Programs" submenu - this submenu allows you to call up factory programs, and also save and load program banks.
Q: AudioMulch doesn't seem to save VST programs, when I reload a document using VST programs they are gone, is this a bug?
A: Because of the differences between AudioMulch's built-in preset system, and the VST program system, AudioMulch does not currently save VST plugin's programs. Use AudioMulch's built-in preset system to save multiple presets, or use the Save VST Program Bank feature to save a VST plugin's programs to a separate file.
Q: I just tried a VST plugin in AudioMulch and it crashed or didn't work properly. The plugin's author says it must be a problem with AudioMulch. When will you fix the bug?
A: AudioMulch's VST support has been developed in close consultation with a number of major VST plugin developers - it is generally regarded to be quite stable. Hundreds of VST plugins work perfectly in AudioMulch. However, the VST plugin specification is ambiguous, this can create incompatibilities between different hosts and plugins. If you find a plugin that does not work in AudioMulch, you should contact its author and ask whether it has been tested in AudioMulch, if not ask them to test it to ensure that there is not a bug in the plugin. If they have tested it in AudioMulch and still believe that the problem is with AudioMulch, ask them to email a technical explanation of the problem to AudioMulch's creator Ross Bencina (firstname.lastname@example.org) so that we can work together to resolve the issue. Please understand that without the cooperation of VST Plugin developers it is impossible for AudioMulch to support every possible variation of plugin implementation.
Q: Can I use Direct-X plugins or instruments in AudioMulch? If not, when will AudioMulch support Direct-X plugins?
A: AudioMulch doesn't currently support Direct-X plugins, and there are no current plans to implement support. You could consider using the DX Rack (FFX16 and FFX4) from VB Audio - these are VST plugins which can host multiple Direct-X effects.
Q: Does AudioMulch support AudioUnit plugins on Mac?
A: Yes, on Mac AudioMulch supports VST and AudioUnit plugins.
Q: Why do some sound files import into AudioMulch fine, but others don't?
A: AudioMulch currently only supports linear PCM wave and aiff files, other file formats such as compressed files are not supported. To use files in other formats, first convert them to a supported format using a sound editor or conversion utility.
AudioMulch 1.0 FAQs
These FAQs only apply to the older version 1.0 of AudioMulch.
Q: Does AudioMulch 1.0 work with Windows Vista or Windows 7? I seem to be having problems...
A: Yes, AudioMulch 1.0 works with Windows Vista and Windows 7. However, you need to use the "Run as administrator" setting. To do this, right-click on the program icon, select "Properties" then navigate to the "Compatibility" tab and select "Run this program as administrator". You can also change the setting for a shortcut by right-clicking, selecting "Properties" then "Advanced..." then "Run as administrator". Still confused? Googling for "windows vista run as administrator" turns up lots of helpful information.
Q: I'm a registered user of AudioMulch 1.0 but I've lost my copy. Can I still download it from somewhere?
A: You can download AudioMulch 1.0 here