"Audio processing and synthesis plugins are always a lively
topic for musicians. Many contemporary music-makers rely completely
upon their plugin collection for all their sound sources and
processing routines, and it is not at all uncommon to discover that
some of these composers have never learned to play a traditional
instrument. However you feel about audio plugins they are a fact of
life in modern music production.
"In the Win/Mac worlds the VST standard rules, thanks to the
Steinberg Company's liberal policy regarding the use of their VST
SDK (systems development kit), but the VST flag is not the only one
waving over those worlds. Apple offers the AU (Audio Unit) format
for Mac audio plugins, Digidesign has their proprietary RTAS
(Real-Time Audio Suite) for their products, and Microsoft's DirectX
includes a plugin programming interface. In an apparent bid to
compete with this array of formats, Linux can claim its own variety
of standards and acronyms, including LADSPA, LV2, MESS, DSSI, and
native VST. This article presents a summary of recent activity in
Linux audio plugin development.
"LADSPA is the senior player in the Linux audio plugin field.
Its API (applications programming interface) is stable, but
development is no longer as lively as when it first appeared.
Nevertheless, some significant LADSPA plugins have shown up in the
last few months."