Bits from the Debian Multimedia Maintainers
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The Debian Multimedia Maintainers have been quite active since the
Wheezy release, and have some interesting news to share for the Jessie
release. Here we give you a brief update on what work has been done and
work that is still ongoing.
Let's see what's cooking for Jessie then.
Frameworks and libraries
* Support for many new media formats and codecs.
The codec library libavcodec, which is used by popular media playback
applications including vlc, mpv, totem (using gstreamer1.0-libav), xine,
and many more, has been updated to the latest upstream release version
11 provided by Libav [libav]. This provides Debian users with HEVC
playback, a native Opus decoder, Matroska 3D support, Apple ProRes, and
much more. Please see [libav-changelog] for a full list of functionality
additions and updates.
libebur128 is a free implementation of the European Broadcasting Union
Loudness Recommendation (EBU R128), which is essentially an alternative
to ReplayGain. The library can be used to analyze audio perceived
loudness and subsequentially normalize the volume during playback.
libltc provides functionalities to encode and decode Linear (or
Longitudinal) Timecode (LTC) from/to SMPTE data timecode.
libva and the driver for Intel GPUs has been updated to the 1.4.0
release. Support for new GPUs has been added. libva now also supports
* Pure Data
A number of new additional libraries (externals) will appear in Jessie,
including (among others) Eric Lyon's fftease and lyonpotpourrie, Thomas
Musil's iemlib, the pdstring library for string manipulation and pd-lua
that allows to write Pd-objects in the popular lua scripting language.
JACK and LADI
LASH Audio Session Handler was abandoned upstream a long time ago in
favor of the new session management system, called ladish (LADI Session
Handler). ladish allows users to run many JACK applications at once and
save/restore their configuration with few mouse clicks.
The current status of the integration between the session handler and
JACK may be summarized as follows:
* ladish provides the backend;
* laditools contains a number of useful graphical tools to tune the
session management system's whole configuration (including JACK);
* gladish provides a easy-to-use graphical interface for the session
Note that ladish uses the D-Bus interface to the jack daemon, therefore
only Jessie's jackd2 provides support for and also cooperates fine
Plugins: LV2 and LADSPA
Debian Jessie will bring the newest 1.10.0 version of the LV2 technology
[lv2]. Most changes affect the packaging of new plugins and extensions,
a brief list of packaging guidelines is now available [lv2-packaging].
A number of new plugins and development tools too have been made
available during the Jessie development cycle:
* LV2 Toolkit
LVTK provides libraries that wrap the LV2 C API and extensions into easy
to use C++ classes. The original work for this
was mostly done by Lars Luthman in lv2-c++-tools.
* Vee One Suite
The whole suite by Rui Nuno Capela is now available in Jessie, and
consists of three components:
drumkv1: old-school drum-kit sampler synthesizer
samplv1: polyphonic sampler
synthv1: analog-style 4-oscillator substractive synthesizer
All three are provided in both forms of LV2 plugins and stand-alone JACK
client. JACK session, JACK MIDI, and ALSA MIDI are supported too.
* x42-plugins and zam-plugins
LV2 bundles containing many audio plugins for high quality processing.
Fomp is an LV2 port of the MCP, VCO, FIL, and WAH plugins by Fons
Some other components have been upgraded to more recent upstream versions:
* ab2gate: 1.1.7
* calf: 0.0.19+git20140915+5de5da28
* eq10q: 2.0~beta5.1
* NASPRO: 0.5.1
We've packaged ste-plugins, Fons Adriaensen's new stereo LADSPA plugins
A major upgrade of frei0r [frei0r], namely the standard collection for
the minimalistic plugin API for video effects, will be available in
New multimedia applications
Advene (Annotate Digital Video, Exchange on the NEt) is a flexible video
The new generation of the popular digital audio workstation will make
its very first appearance in Debian Jessie.
Qt4 front-end for the MPD daemon.
Csound for jessie will feature the new major series 6, with the improved
IDE CsoundQT. This new csound supports improved array data type
handling, multi-core rendering and debugging features.
DIN Is Noise is a musical instrument and audio synthesizer that supports
JACK audio output, MIDI, OSC, and IRC bot as input sources. It could be
extended and customized with Tcl scripts too.
dvd-slideshow consists of a suite of command line tools which come in
handy to make slideshows from collections of pictures. Documentation is
provided and available in `/usr/share/doc/dvd-slideshow/'.
DVDwizard can fully automate the creation of DVD-Video filesystem. It
supports graphical menus, chapters, multiple titlesets and
multi-language streams. It supports both PAL and NTSC video modes too.
Flowblade is a video editor - like the popular KDenlive based on the MLT
engine, but more lightweight and with some difference in editing concepts.
Forked-daapd switched [forked-daapd] to a new, active upstream again
dropping Grand Central Dispatch in favor of libevent. The switch fixed
several bugs and made forked-daapd available on all release
architectures instead of shipping only on amd64 and i386. Now nothing
prevents you from setting up a music streaming (DAAP/DACP) server on
your favorite home server no matter if it is based on mips, arm or x86!
HTTP Ardour Video Daemon decodes still images from movie files and
serves them via HTTP. It provides frame-accurate decoding and is main
use-case is to act as backend and second level cache for rendering the
videotimeline in Ardour.
* Groove Basin
Groove Basin is a music player server with a web-based user interface
inspired by Amarok 1.4. It runs on a server optionally connected to
speakers. Guests can control the music player by connecting with a
laptop, tablet, or smart phone. Further, users can stream their music
It comes with a fast, responsive web interface that supports keyboard
shortcuts and drag drop. It also provides the ability to upload songs,
download songs, and import songs by URL, including YouTube URLs. Groove
Basin supports Dynamic Mode which automatically queues random songs,
favoring songs that have not been queued recently.
It automatically performs ReplayGain scanning on every song using the
EBU R128 loudness standard, and automatically switches between track and
album mode. Groove Basin supports the MPD protocol, which means it is
compatible with MPD clients. There is also a more powerful Groove Basin
protocol which you can use if the MPD protocol does not meet your needs.
HandBrake, a versatile video transcoder, is now available for Jessie. It
could convert video from nearly any format to a wide range of commonly
New jackd midiclock utility made by Robin Gareus.
Laborejo, Esperanto for "Workshop", is used to craft music through
notation. It is a LilyPond GUI frontend, a MIDI creator and a tool
collection to inspire and help music composers.
mpv [mpv] is a movie player based on MPlayer and mplayer2. It supports a
wide variety of video file formats, audio and video codecs, and subtitle
types. The project focuses mainly on modern systems and encourages
developer activity. As such, large portions of outdated code originating
from MPlayer have been removed, and many new features and improvements
have been added [mpv-changelog]. Note that, although there are still
some similarities to its predecessors, mpv should be considered a
completely different program (e.g. lacking compatibility with both
mplayer and mplayer2 in terms of command-line arguments and
SMTube is a stand-alone graphical video browser and player, which makes
YouTube's videos browsing, playing, and download such a piece of cake.
It has so many features that, we are sure, will make YouTube lovers
very, very happy.
Sonic Visualiser Application for viewing and analysing the contents of
music audio files.
SoundScapeRenderer (aka SSR) is a (rather) easy to use render engine for
spatial audio, that provides a number of different rendering algorithms,
ranging from binaural (headphone) playback via wave field synthesis to
videotrans is a set of scripts that allow its user to reformat existing
movies into the VOB format that is used on DVDs.
XBMC has been partially rebranded as "XBMC from Debian" [xbmc-debian] to
make it clear that it is changed to conform to Debian's Policy. The
latest stable release, 13.2 Gotham will be part of Jessie making Debian
a good choice for HTPC-s.
Binaural stereo signals converter made by Fons Adriaensen
Stereo monitoring organiser for jackd made by Fons Adriaensen
Jack clients to transmit multichannel audio over a local IP network made
by Fons Adriaensen
Radium Compressor is the system compressor of the Radium suite. It is
provided in the form of stand-alone JACK application.
With Jessie we are shipping a set of multimedia related tasks [tasks].
They include package lists for doing several multimedia related tasks.
If you are interested in defining new tasks, or tweaking the current,
existing ones, we are very much interested in hearing from you.
Upgraded applications and libraries
* Aeolus: 0.9.0
* Aliki: 0.3.0
* Ams: 2.1.1
* amsynth: 1.4.2
* Audacious: 3.5.2
* Audacity: 2.0.5
* Audio File Library: 0.3.6
* Blender: 2.72b
* Bristol: 0.60.11f
* C* Audio Plugin Suite: 0.9.23
* Cecilia: 5.0.9
* cmus: 2.5.0
* DeVeDe: 3.23.0-13-gbfd73f3
* DRC: 3.2.1
* EasyTag: 2.2.2
* ebumeter: 0.2.0
* faustworks: 0.5
* ffDiaporama: 1.5
* ffms: 2.20
* gmusicbrowser: 1.1.13
* Hydrogen: 0.9.6.1
* IDJC: 0.8.14
* jack-tools: 20131226
* LiVES: 2.2.6
* mhWaveEdit: 1.4.23
* Mixxx: 1.11.0
* mp3fs: 0.91
* MusE: 2.1.2
* Petri-Foo: 0.1.87
* PHASEX: 0.14.97
* QjackCtl: 0.3.12
* Qtractor: 0.6.3
* rtaudio: 4.1.1
* Rosegarden: 14.02
* rtmidi: 2.1.0
* SoundTouch: 1.8.0
* stk: 4.4.4
* streamtuner2: 2.1.3
* SuperCollider: 3.6.6
* Synfig Studio: 0.64.1
* TerminatorX: 3.90
* tsdecrypt: 10.0
* Vamp Plugins SDK: 2.5
* VLC: Jessie will release with the 2.2.x series of VLC
* XCFA: 4.3.8
* xwax: 1.5
* xjadeo: 0.8.0
* x264: 0.142.2431+gita5831aa
* zynaddsubfx: 2.4.3
What's not going to be in Jessie
with the aim to improve the overall quality of the multimedia software
available in Debian, we have dropped a number of packages which were
* lv2fil (suggested replacement for users is eq10q or calf eq)
* specimen (suggested replacement for users is petri-foo - fork of
* zynjacku (suggested replacement for users is jalv)
We've also dropped mplayer, presently nobody seems interested in
The suggested replacements for users are mplayer2 or mpv. Whilst the
former is mostly compatible with mplayer in terms of command-line
arguments and configuration (and adds a few new features too), the
latter adds a lot of new features and improvements, and it is actively
Please note that although the mencoder package is no longer available
anymore, avconv and mpv do provide encoding functionality. For more
information see [avconv-man], [avconv-documentation] and [mpv-encoding].
rtkit under systemd is broken at the moment. [bug747568]
More information about team's activity are available at [team-stats].
Where to reach us
The Debian Multimedia Maintainers can be reached at
pkg-multimedia-maintainers AT lists.alioth.debian.org for packaging
related topics, or at debian-multimedia AT lists.debian.org for user and
more general discussion.
We would like to invite everyone interested in multimedia to join us
there. Some of the team members are also in the #debian-multimedia
channel on OFTC.
on behalf of the Debian Multimedia Maintainers
Alessio Treglia | www.alessiotreglia.com
Debian Developer | firstname.lastname@example.org
Ubuntu Core Developer | email@example.com
0416 0004 A827 6E40 BB98 90FB E8A4 8AE5 311D 765A
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