Allows you to easily define instruments with seemingly arbitrary mathematical functions, and then use them to play notes at given time intervals.
The instrument functions can be parametrized, and each note played can have different parameters.
The instrument definition actually defines a block diagram graph, much like a hardware synthesizer would.
Csound is so not-bloated that it contains an UI system. And it includes an interactive virtual MIDI keyboard that interacts with parameter knobs: http://www.csounds.com/manual/html/MidiTop.html
CSound states that one of its design goals is backward compatibility, and it shows. Some of the stuff is utterly arcane, e.g. you have to remember what
GEN11, etc. mean instead of having named enums.
It just worked on Ubuntu 20.04 no questions asked:which runs this file: https://github.com/csound/csound/blob/92409ecce053d707360a5794f5f4f6bf5ebf5d24/examples/xanadu.csd and this plays a relly cool sound demo:
sudo apt install csound git clone https://github.com/csound/csound cd csound git checkout 92409ecce053d707360a5794f5f4f6bf5ebf5d24 csound examples/xanadu.csd
Save to file instead of playing:or direct ogg output:or pipe to stdout to FFmpeg TODO: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/64970503/how-to-pipe-csound-output-to-ffmpeg-for-conversion-without-an-intermediate-file
csound -o xanadu.wav xanadu.csd
csound --ogg -o xanadu.ogg xanadu.csd
TODO find the most amazing set of songs made with it on GitHub? Some examples:
- http://www.csounds.com/toots/index.html has a good 101 on instrument design
- Csound FLOSS manual
- http://iainmccurdy.org/csound.html about 100 CC BY-SA examples. Each is a minimal study showing a specific technique, not a full composition, some seem advanced. Dude's a beast.
- https://github.com/csound/csound/tree/f2e70825fb543a6b15011c6984371f61ab2a00dd/tests/soak in-tree minimal examples
- https://github.com/csound/manual/tree/4049b286493d972ff7248b5596e47e7ae97a0cf9/examples contains the examples for the manual which is rendered at: It's insane, but it's fun! Ah those newbs who separate manuals from main tree.
- http://linuxsynths.com/CsoundPatchesDemos/csound.html on LinuxSynths
- https://github.com/csound/examples/tree/ae578159328178142c1055c7f78e28b42eb29774/csd as a few dozen examples
- http://freaknet.org/martin/audio/csound/ 10 pieces with source
- csound/linen.csd: simple attack/release envelope, documented at: http://www.csounds.com/manual/html/linen.html
- csound/chorus.csd: chorus effect
- csound/bend.csd: bend using