Difference between revisions of "Zynthian FAQ"

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Please, add your questions to this FAQ. And of course, if you can add/improve an answer, do it! ;-)
 
Please, add your questions to this FAQ. And of course, if you can add/improve an answer, do it! ;-)
  
----------------------------------
+
===LINUX Audio terminology is confusing===
 +
[[Understanding LINUX Audio]] Helps understand the acronyms mentioned in this Wiki
 +
 
 +
===Which compute boards does Zynthian support?===
 +
The currently supported computing boards are:
 +
 
 +
* [https://www.raspberrypi.org/products/raspberry-pi-4-model-b Raspberry Pi 4 Model B]
 +
* [https://www.raspberrypi.org/products/raspberry-pi-3-model-b-plus Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+]
 +
* [https://www.raspberrypi.org/products/raspberry-pi-3-model-b Raspberry Pi 3 Model B]
 +
 
 +
RBPi2 is not longer supported by official zynthian SD images.
 +
RBPi3 is supported but may be not powerfull enough if you plan to use many sound engines at the same time.
 +
RBPi4 is the best choice.
 +
 
 +
=== I want to run Zynthian OS on another Single Board Computer ===
 +
 
 +
Not an easy task, but it's doable for advanced users.
 +
If you want to use a different computing board model, you have to build your own SD image using the setup scripts. You can start from [https://github.com/zynthian/zynthian-sys/blob/master/scripts/setup_system_rbpi_raspbian_lite_buster.sh here] on top of minimal Debian Buster install. This script and the [https://github.com/zynthian/zynthian-sys/blob/master/scripts/zynthian_envars.sh environment variables] should be adapted to match your board.
  
 
===Where can i buy a Zynthian Kit?===
 
===Where can i buy a Zynthian Kit?===
Currently you can buy the official Zynthian Kits in the [http://shop.zynthian.org Zynthian Shop].
 
  
=== I just wrote my 16/32/64 GB SD card with a Zynthian image, but from Zynthian's console i only see a part of SD's total space and i've no free space left in the partition. How can i make available all the space on my SD Card? ===
+
You can buy official kits in the '''[https://shop.zynthian.org Zynthian Shop]'''.
 +
 
 +
=== How do I edit entries in the Wiki? ===
 +
You need to be able to login into the Wiki. Registering in the wiki is currently disabled for security reasons, but you can ask on the forum to get access.
 +
 
 +
=== I have a license for Pianoteq, what would be the process to enter the license key ? ===
 +
 
 +
You have to access the webconf tool and follow ''carefully'' the instructions from the "Software->Pianoteq" section.
 +
 
 +
=== I see a red lightning on the display, I hear cracks when playing ===
 +
 
 +
You are suffering from underpower. You need a reliable Power Supply Unit and a strong USB cable. The official RaspberryPi PSU bundle is the one that works perfectly. And it's available in the [https://shop.zynthian.org/shop/product/raspberry-pi-15-3w-usb-c-power-supply-389 Zynthian shop].
 +
 
 +
=== Loading engines or soundfonts is slow ===
 +
 
 +
Be sure that you're using a high quality SD card.
 +
Also, if you're running ZynthianOs on a RBPi3, consider upgrading to RBPi4.
 +
 
 +
=== Despite I have a good PSU, a good SD card and a RBPi4, my Zynthian hangs ===
 +
Maybe you have let the VNC server running while playing. Forwarding the sound engines native gui over the network is resource consuming. You should consider disabling the VNC server.
 +
 
 +
=== Does the pre-built kit come with a Raspberry Pi ? ===  
  
After writing the Zynthian image in the SD card, you have to "expand" the partition to fill all the available space.
+
[https://shop.zynthian.org/shop/product/zynthian-kit-v4-2-358?category=13 In the shop], you can choose to buy the kit with or without a Raspberry Pi 4.
  
Procedure:
+
=== I’m primarily a guitarist and thus, I’m interested in the MOD UI... ===
  
+ login into Zynthian by SSH
+
Currently, all official Zynthian Bundle-All Kits include "audio input". The new official sound card is the [https://blog.zynthian.org/2021/05/zynadac-v1-0-an-open-hardware-soundcard-for-zynthian/ ZynADAC].
+ execute "df" command to see the size of your partition and the available space
 
+ run "sudo raspi-config" and select the first option to expand your partition
 
+ reboot Zynthian
 
+ login again and execute "df" command to see size of your partition and the available space
 
  
You should see the difference ;-)
+
Zynthia UI allows to create up to 16 processing audio-FX-chains and you can also use the fantastic MOD-UI.
  
'''Important:''' If you don't expand your partition, you will have problems when updating zynthian software or library, as you will run out of space.
+
=== Do you think Zynthian is for me? ===
  
'''UPDATE: From 2016-12-23, the Gorgona SD image solve this problem. Now, in the first boot, the partition size will be auto-expanded.'''
+
It depends a lot. Building a recent official zynthian kit doesn't require soldering, only basic tinkering (plugging wires, screw-driving, etc.). The official zynthian software runs out-the-box and you shouldn't need to use the command line. That being said, being comfortable with Linux command line helps in solving problems.
 +
If you love tinkering and have specific needs, Zynthian is an excellent basis to taylor a unique piece of hardware.
  
=== Can i play a MIDI track with Zynthian as a multi instrument expander (different instruments on different channels)? If I have such a setup: how can I store it? ===
+
=== About Zynthian Security===
  
You can create such a setup by using the channel list and configuring different presets on each channel. This will work with the next Synth Engines:
+
FYI, everything in Zynthian is executed as root user.
  
+ ZynAddSubFX
+
Anybody who wants to connect their Zynthians to a “not secure” network (any network not controlled by oneself should be considered “not secure”) '''SHOULD CHANGE the default zynthian password'''. You can do that from the webconf tool.
+ LinuxSampler
 
+ FluidSynth
 
  
setBfree tries to emulate the original Hammond B3 configuration. It has a fixed setup of 2 manuals (upper and lower) and pedals, arranged in channels 1, 2 and 3.
+
You also have to understand that:
  
While using MOD-UI, the channel list doesn't appears, but you can setup a MIDI splitter/router inside Carla and configure different plugins/effects in each channel or create more complex setups. No limits (well, CPU ;-).
+
* Although the Webconf Tool ask for the password, it doesn’t use HTTPS, so your password could be sniffed by bad actors connected to the local network. That is especially true if you are using an ethernet cable or the old WEP Wifi protocol. If you are using WPA2 Wifi protocol on your 2 devices (Zynthian and your “computer”), then you should be protected against sniffers.
  
Remember that currently you can only work with one engine at a time, but using MOD-UI you can load all the engines as plugins, so you create complex multi-engine setups.
+
* When a MOD-UI layer is created on zynthian, the MOD-UI server run completely open for everybody in the local network.
  
=== I try to put some GIG files inside the '''zynthian-my-data/soundfonts''' folder, but Zynthian GUI don't show my files. What am i doing wrong? ===
+
IMHO, these 2 are the main security holes in Zynthian. For solving it, we have to:
  
The files dropped directly inside "gig" directory wont be shown. You must create some subfolder (category) inside the gig folder. The same is true for SFZs soundfonts.
+
# Use HTTPS for webconf tool. This is already implemented with a self-signed certificate.
 +
# Secure the MOD-UI server:
 +
## Fast and Easy Way: Set a flag for “secure” networks, so MOD-UI will be “open” in that networks only
 +
## Not so Easy Way: Use HTTPS and ask for the password. We should modify MOD-UI source code
  
=== How do I edit entries in the wiki? ===
+
=== How good can the Latency be ? ===
You need to be able to login to the wiki with a username:
+
[https://discourse.zynthian.org/t/latency-on-the-new-hifiberry-stage-dac/5627/2?u=wyleu A forum post on Latency.]
Simply register . .
 

Latest revision as of 16:21, 16 July 2021

Please, add your questions to this FAQ. And of course, if you can add/improve an answer, do it! ;-)

LINUX Audio terminology is confusing

Understanding LINUX Audio Helps understand the acronyms mentioned in this Wiki

Which compute boards does Zynthian support?

The currently supported computing boards are:

RBPi2 is not longer supported by official zynthian SD images. RBPi3 is supported but may be not powerfull enough if you plan to use many sound engines at the same time. RBPi4 is the best choice.

I want to run Zynthian OS on another Single Board Computer

Not an easy task, but it's doable for advanced users. If you want to use a different computing board model, you have to build your own SD image using the setup scripts. You can start from here on top of minimal Debian Buster install. This script and the environment variables should be adapted to match your board.

Where can i buy a Zynthian Kit?

You can buy official kits in the Zynthian Shop.

How do I edit entries in the Wiki?

You need to be able to login into the Wiki. Registering in the wiki is currently disabled for security reasons, but you can ask on the forum to get access.

I have a license for Pianoteq, what would be the process to enter the license key ?

You have to access the webconf tool and follow carefully the instructions from the "Software->Pianoteq" section.

I see a red lightning on the display, I hear cracks when playing

You are suffering from underpower. You need a reliable Power Supply Unit and a strong USB cable. The official RaspberryPi PSU bundle is the one that works perfectly. And it's available in the Zynthian shop.

Loading engines or soundfonts is slow

Be sure that you're using a high quality SD card. Also, if you're running ZynthianOs on a RBPi3, consider upgrading to RBPi4.

Despite I have a good PSU, a good SD card and a RBPi4, my Zynthian hangs

Maybe you have let the VNC server running while playing. Forwarding the sound engines native gui over the network is resource consuming. You should consider disabling the VNC server.

Does the pre-built kit come with a Raspberry Pi ?

In the shop, you can choose to buy the kit with or without a Raspberry Pi 4.

I’m primarily a guitarist and thus, I’m interested in the MOD UI...

Currently, all official Zynthian Bundle-All Kits include "audio input". The new official sound card is the ZynADAC.

Zynthia UI allows to create up to 16 processing audio-FX-chains and you can also use the fantastic MOD-UI.

Do you think Zynthian is for me?

It depends a lot. Building a recent official zynthian kit doesn't require soldering, only basic tinkering (plugging wires, screw-driving, etc.). The official zynthian software runs out-the-box and you shouldn't need to use the command line. That being said, being comfortable with Linux command line helps in solving problems. If you love tinkering and have specific needs, Zynthian is an excellent basis to taylor a unique piece of hardware.

About Zynthian Security

FYI, everything in Zynthian is executed as root user.

Anybody who wants to connect their Zynthians to a “not secure” network (any network not controlled by oneself should be considered “not secure”) SHOULD CHANGE the default zynthian password. You can do that from the webconf tool.

You also have to understand that:

  • Although the Webconf Tool ask for the password, it doesn’t use HTTPS, so your password could be sniffed by bad actors connected to the local network. That is especially true if you are using an ethernet cable or the old WEP Wifi protocol. If you are using WPA2 Wifi protocol on your 2 devices (Zynthian and your “computer”), then you should be protected against sniffers.
  • When a MOD-UI layer is created on zynthian, the MOD-UI server run completely open for everybody in the local network.

IMHO, these 2 are the main security holes in Zynthian. For solving it, we have to:

  1. Use HTTPS for webconf tool. This is already implemented with a self-signed certificate.
  2. Secure the MOD-UI server:
    1. Fast and Easy Way: Set a flag for “secure” networks, so MOD-UI will be “open” in that networks only
    2. Not so Easy Way: Use HTTPS and ask for the password. We should modify MOD-UI source code

How good can the Latency be ?

A forum post on Latency.