Csound offers many opcodes for playing back sound files that have first been loaded into a function table (and therefore are loaded into RAM). Some of these offer higher quality at the expense of computation speed; some are simpler and less fully featured.
One of the newer and easier to use opcodes for this task is flooper2. As its name might suggest it is intended for the playback of files with looping. 'flooper2' can also apply a cross-fade between the end and the beginning of the loop in order to smooth the transition where looping takes place.
In the following example a sound file that has been loaded into a GEN01 function table is played back using 'flooper2'. 'flooper2' also includes a parameter for modulating playback speed/pitch. There is also the option of modulating the loop points at k-rate. In this example the entire file is simply played and looped. You can replace the sound file with one of your own or you can download the one used in the example from here.
When storing sound files in GEN01 function tables we must ensure that we define a table of sufficient size to store our sound file. Normally function table sizes should be powers of 2 (2, 4, 8, 16, 32 etc.). If we know the duration of our sound file, we can derive the required table size by multiplying this duration by the sample rate and then choosing the next power of 2 larger than this. For example when the sampling rate is 44100, we will require 44100 table locations to store 1 second of audio; but 44100 is not a power of 2 so we must choose the next power of 2 larger than this which is 65536. (Hint: you can discover a sound file's duration by using Csound's 'sndinfo' utility.)
There are some 'lazy' options however: if we underestimate the table size when we then run Csound, it will warn us that this table size is too small and conveniently inform us via the terminal what the minimum size required to store the entire file would be - we can then substitute this value in our GEN01 table. We can also overestimate the table size in which case Csound won't complain at all, but this is a rather inefficient approach.
If we give table size a value of zero we have what is referred to as 'deferred table size'. This means that Csound will calculate the exact table size needed to store our sound file and use this as the table size but this will probably not be a power of 2. Many of Csound's opcodes will work quite happily with non-power of 2 function table sizes, but not all! It is a good idea to know how to deal with power of 2 table sizes. We can also explicitly define non-power of 2 table sizes by prefacing the table size with a minus sign '-'.
All of the above discussion about required table sizes assumed that the sound file was mono; to store a stereo sound file will naturally require twice the storage space, for example, 1 second of stereo audio will require 88200 storage locations. GEN01 will indeed store stereo sound files and many of Csound's opcodes will read from stereo GEN01 function tables, but again not all! We must be prepared to split stereo sound files, either to two sound files on disk or into two function tables using GEN01's 'channel' parameter (p8), depending on the opcodes we are using.
Storing audio in GEN01 tables as mono channels with non-deferred and power of 2 table sizes will ensure maximum compatibility.
<CsoundSynthesizer> <CsOptions> -odac ; activate real-time audio </CsOptions> <CsInstruments> ; example written by Iain McCurdy sr = 44100 ksmps = 32 nchnls = 1 0dbfs = 1 ; STORE AUDIO IN RAM USING GEN01 FUNCTION TABLE giSoundFile ftgen 0, 0, 262144, 1, "loop.wav", 0, 0, 0 instr 1 ; play audio from function table using flooper2 opcode kAmp = 1 ; amplitude kPitch = p4 ; pitch/speed kLoopStart = 0 ; point where looping begins (in seconds) kLoopEnd = nsamp(giSoundFile)/sr; loop end (end of file) kCrossFade = 0 ; cross-fade time ; read audio from the function table using the flooper2 opcode aSig flooper2 kAmp,kPitch,kLoopStart,kLoopEnd,kCrossFade,giSoundFile out aSig ; send audio to output endin </CsInstruments> <CsScore> ; p4 = pitch ; (sound file duration is 4.224) i 1 0 [4.224*2] 1 i 1 + [4.224*2] 0.5 i 1 + [4.224*1] 2 e </CsScore> </CsoundSynthesizer>
Csound has an opcode called sndloop which provides a simple method of recording some audio into a buffer and then playing it back immediately. The duration of audio storage required is defined when the opcode is initialized. In the following example two seconds is provided. Once activated, as soon as two seconds of live audio has been recorded by 'sndloop', it immediately begins playing it back in a loop. 'sndloop' allows us to modulate the speed/pitch of the played back audio as well as providing the option of defining a crossfade time between the end and the beginning of the loop. In the example pressing 'r' on the computer keyboard activates record followed by looped playback, pressing 's' stops record or playback, pressing '+' increases the speed and therefore the pitch of playback and pressing '-' decreases the speed/pitch of playback. If playback speed is reduced below zero it enters the negative domain, in which case playback will be reversed.
You will need to have a microphone connected to your computer in order to use this example.
; real-time audio in and out are both activated -iadc -odac </CsOptions> <CsInstruments> ;example written by Iain McCurdy sr = 44100 ksmps = 32 nchnls = 1 instr 1 ; PRINT INSTRUCTIONS prints "Press 'r' to record, 's' to stop playback, " prints "'+' to increase pitch, '-' to decrease pitch.\\n" ; SENSE KEYBOARD ACTIVITY kKey sensekey; sense activity on the computer keyboard aIn inch 1 ; read audio from first input channel kPitch init 1 ; initialize pitch parameter iDur init 2 ; inititialize duration of loop parameter iFade init 0.05 ; initialize crossfade time parameter if kKey = 114 then ; if 'r' has been pressed... kTrig = 1 ; set trigger to begin record-playback elseif kKey = 115 then ; if 's' has been pressed... kTrig = 0 ; set trigger to turn off record-playback elseif kKey = 43 then ; if '+' has been pressed... kPitch = kPitch + 0.02 ; increment pitch parameter elseif kKey = 45 then ; if '-' has been pressed kPitch = kPitch - 0.02 ; decrement pitch parameter endif ; end of conditional branches ; CREATE SNDLOOP INSTANCE aOut, kRec sndloop aIn, kPitch, kTrig, iDur, iFade ; (kRec output is not used) out aOut ; send audio to output endin </CsInstruments> <CsScore> i 1 0 3600 ; instr 1 plays for 1 hour </CsScore> </CsoundSynthesizer>
Writing to and reading from buffers can also be achieved through the use of Csound's opcodes for table reading and writing operations. Although the procedure is a little more complicated than that required for 'sndloop' it is ultimately more flexible. In the next example separate instruments are used for recording to the table and for playing back from the table. Another instrument which runs constantly scans for activity on the computer keyboard and activates the record or playback instruments accordingly. For writing to the table we will use the tablew opcode and for reading from the table we will use the table opcode (if we were to modulate the playback speed it would be better to use one of Csound's interpolating variations of 'table' such as tablei or table3. Csound writes individual values to table locations, the exact table locations being defined by an 'index'. For writing continuous audio to a table this index will need to be continuously moving 1 location for every sample. This moving index (or 'pointer') can be created with an a-rate line or a phasor. The next example uses 'line'. When using Csound's table operation opcodes we first need to create that table, either in the orchestra header or in the score. The duration of the audio buffer can be calculated from the size of the table. In this example the table is 2^17 points long, that is 131072 points. The duration in seconds is this number divided by the sample rate which in our example is 44100Hz. Therefore maximum storage duration for this example is 131072/44100 which is around 2.9 seconds.
<CsoundSynthesizer> <CsOptions> ; real-time audio in and out are both activated -iadc -odac -d -m0 </CsOptions> <CsInstruments> ; example written by Iain McCurdy sr = 44100 ksmps = 32 nchnls = 1 giBuffer ftgen 0, 0, 2^17, 7, 0; table for audio data storage maxalloc 2,1 ; allow only one instance of the recording instrument at a time! instr 1 ; Sense keyboard activity. Trigger record or playback accordingly. prints "Press 'r' to record, 'p' for playback.\\n" iTableLen = ftlen(giBuffer) ; derive buffer function table length idur = iTableLen / sr ; derive storage time in seconds kKey sensekey ; sense activity on the computer keyboard if kKey=114 then ; if ASCCI value of 114 ('r') is output event "i", 2, 0, idur, iTableLen ; activate recording instrument (2) endif if kKey=112 then ; if ASCCI value of 112 ('p) is output event "i", 3, 0, idur, iTableLen ; activate playback instrument endif endin instr 2 ; record to buffer iTableLen = p4 ; table/recording length in samples ; -- print progress information to terminal -- prints "recording" printks ".", 0.25 ; print '.' every quarter of a second krelease release ; sense when note is in final k-rate pass... if krelease=1 then ; then .. printks "\\ndone\\n", 0 ; ... print a message endif ; -- write audio to table -- ain inch 1 ; read audio from live input channel 1 andx line 0,p3,iTableLen ; create an index for writing to table tablew ain,andx,giBuffer ; write audio to function table endin instr 3 ; playback from buffer iTableLen = p4 ; table/recording length in samples ; -- print progress information to terminal -- prints "playback" printks ".", 0.25 ; print '.' every quarter of a second krelease release ; sense when note is in final k-rate pass if krelease=1 then ; then ... printks "\\ndone\\n", 0 ; ... print a message endif; end of conditional branch ; -- read audio from table -- aNdx line 0, p3, iTableLen; create an index for reading from table a1 table aNdx, giBuffer ; read audio to audio storage table out a1 ; send audio to output endin </CsInstruments> <CsScore> i 1 0 3600 ; Sense keyboard activity. Start recording - playback. </CsScore> </CsoundSynthesizer>
Recording and playing back of buffers can also be encapsulated into a User Defined Opcode. This time the tabw opcode will be used for writing audio data to a buffer. tabw is slightly faster than tablew but doesn't offer the same number of protections for out of range index values.
An empty table (buffer) of any size can be created with a negative number as size. A table for recording 10 seconds of audio data can be created in this way:
giBuf1 ftgen 0, 0, -(10*sr), 2, 0
The user can decide whether they want to assign a certain number to the table, or whether to allow Csound do assign one automatically, thereafter calling the table via its variable name, in this case giBuf1. Below follows a UDO for creating a mono buffer, and another UDO for creating a stereo buffer:
opcode BufCrt1, i, io ilen, inum xin ift ftgen inum, 0, -(ilen*sr), 2, 0 xout ift endop opcode BufCrt2, ii, io ilen, inum xin iftL ftgen inum, 0, -(ilen*sr), 2, 0 iftR ftgen inum, 0, -(ilen*sr), 2, 0 xout iftL, iftR endop
This simplifies the procedure of creating a record/play buffer, because the user is just asked for the length of the buffer. A number can be given, but by default Csound will assign this number. This statement will create an empty stereo table for 5 seconds of recording:
iBufL,iBufR BufCrt2 5
A first, simple version of a UDO for recording will just write the incoming audio to sequential locations of the table. This can be done by setting the ksmps value to 1 inside this UDO (setksmps 1), so that each audio sample has its own discrete k-value. In this way the write index for the table can be assigned via the statement andx=kndx, and increased by one for the next k-cycle. An additional k-input turns recording on and off:
opcode BufRec1, 0, aik ain, ift, krec xin setksmps 1 if krec == 1 then ;record as long as krec=1 kndx init 0 andx = kndx tabw ain, andx, ift kndx = kndx+1 endif endop
The reading procedure is just as simple. In fact the same code can be used; it will be sufficient just to replace the opcode for writing (tabw) with the opcode for reading (tab):
opcode BufPlay1, a, ik ift, kplay xin setksmps 1 if kplay == 1 then ;play as long as kplay=1 kndx init 0 andx = kndx aout tab andx, ift kndx = kndx+1 endif endop
Next we will use these first simple UDOs in a Csound instrument. Press the "r" key as long as you want to record, and the "p" key for playing back. Note that you must disable the key repeats on your computer keyboard for this example (in QuteCsound, disable "Allow key repeats" in Configuration -> General).
<CsoundSynthesizer> <CsOptions> -i adc -o dac -d -m0 </CsOptions> <CsInstruments> ;example written by Joachim Heintz sr = 44100 ksmps = 32 nchnls = 1 0dbfs = 1 opcode BufCrt1, i, io ilen, inum xin ift ftgen inum, 0, -(ilen*sr), 2, 0 xout ift endop opcode BufRec1, 0, aik ain, ift, krec xin setksmps 1 imaxindx = ftlen(ift)-1 ;max index to write knew changed krec if krec == 1 then ;record as long as krec=1 if knew == 1 then ;reset index if restarted kndx = 0 endif kndx = (kndx > imaxindx ? imaxindx : kndx) andx = kndx tabw ain, andx, ift kndx = kndx+1 endif endop opcode BufPlay1, a, ik ift, kplay xin setksmps 1 imaxindx = ftlen(ift)-1 ;max index to read knew changed kplay if kplay == 1 then ;play as long as kplay=1 if knew == 1 then ;reset index if restarted kndx = 0 endif kndx = (kndx > imaxindx ? imaxindx : kndx) andx = kndx aout tab andx, ift kndx = kndx+1 endif xout aout endop opcode KeyStay, k, kkk ;returns 1 as long as a certain key is pressed key, k0, kascii xin ;ascii code of the key (e.g. 32 for space) kprev init 0 ;previous key value kout = (key == kascii || (key == -1 && kprev == kascii) ? 1 : 0) kprev = (key > 0 ? key : kprev) kprev = (kprev == key && k0 == 0 ? 0 : kprev) xout kout endop opcode KeyStay2, kk, kk ;combines two KeyStay UDO's (this way is necessary ;because just one sensekey opcode is possible in an orchestra) kasci1, kasci2 xin ;two ascii codes as input key,k0 sensekey kout1 KeyStay key, k0, kasci1 kout2 KeyStay key, k0, kasci2 xout kout1, kout2 endop instr 1 ain inch 1 ;audio input on channel 1 iBuf BufCrt1 3 ;buffer for 3 seconds of recording kRec,kPlay KeyStay2 114, 112 ;define keys for record and play BufRec1 ain, iBuf, kRec ;record if kRec=1 aout BufPlay1 iBuf, kPlay ;play if kPlay=1 out aout ;send out endin </CsInstruments> <CsScore> i 1 0 1000 </CsScore> </CsoundSynthesizer>
Next we will create an extended and easier to use version of these two UDOs for recording and playing back a buffer. The requirements of a user might be the following:
The following example provides versions of BufRec and BufPlay which do this job. We will use the table3 opcode instead of the simple tab or table opcodes in this case, because we want to translate any number of samples in the table to any number of output samples using different speed values. In short, we will need to read amplitude values that must be 'imagined' between two existing table value.
For higher or lower speed values than the original record speed, interpolation must be used in between certain sample values if the original shape of the wave is to be reproduced as accurately as possible. This job is performed with high quality by table3 which employs cubic interpolation.
In a typical application of recording and playing buffer buffers, the ability to interact with the process will be paramount. We can benefit from having interactive access to the following:
These interactions could be carried out via widgets, MIDI, OSC or something else. As we want to provide examples which can be used with any Csound frontend here, we are restricted to triggering the record and play events by hitting the space bar of the computer keyboard. (See the CsoundQt version of this example for a more interactive version.)
<CsoundSynthesizer> <CsOptions> -i adc -o dac -d </CsOptions> <CsInstruments> ;example written by joachim heintz sr = 44100 ksmps = 32 nchnls = 2 0dbfs = 1 opcode BufCrt2, ii, io ;creates a stereo buffer ilen, inum xin ;ilen = length of the buffer (table) in seconds iftL ftgen inum, 0, -(ilen*sr), 2, 0 iftR ftgen inum, 0, -(ilen*sr), 2, 0 xout iftL, iftR endop opcode BufRec1, k, aikkkk ;records to a buffer ain, ift, krec, kstart, kend, kwrap xin setksmps 1 kendsmps = kend*sr ;end point in samples kendsmps = (kendsmps == 0 || kendsmps > ftlen(ift) ? ftlen(ift) : kendsmps) kfinished = 0 knew changed krec ;1 if record just started if krec == 1 then if knew == 1 then kndx = kstart * sr - 1 ;first index to write endif if kndx >= kendsmps-1 && kwrap == 1 then kndx = -1 endif if kndx < kendsmps-1 then kndx = kndx + 1 andx = kndx tabw ain, andx, ift else kfinished = 1 endif endif xout kfinished endop opcode BufRec2, k, aaiikkkk ;records to a stereo buffer ainL, ainR, iftL, iftR, krec, kstart, kend, kwrap xin kfin BufRec1 ainL, iftL, krec, kstart, kend, kwrap kfin BufRec1 ainR, iftR, krec, kstart, kend, kwrap xout kfin endop opcode BufPlay1, ak, ikkkkkk ift, kplay, kspeed, kvol, kstart, kend, kwrap xin ;kstart = begin of playing the buffer in seconds ;kend = end of playing in seconds. 0 means the end of the table ;kwrap = 0: no wrapping. stops at kend (positive speed) or kstart ; (negative speed).this makes just sense if the direction does not ; change and you just want to play the table once ;kwrap = 1: wraps between kstart and kend ;kwrap = 2: wraps between 0 and kend ;kwrap = 3: wraps between kstart and end of table ;CALCULATE BASIC VALUES kfin init 0 iftlen = ftlen(ift)/sr ;ftlength in seconds kend = (kend == 0 ? iftlen : kend) ;kend=0 means end of table kstart01 = kstart/iftlen ;start in 0-1 range kend01 = kend/iftlen ;end in 0-1 range kfqbas = (1/iftlen) * kspeed ;basic phasor frequency ;DIFFERENT BEHAVIOUR DEPENDING ON WRAP: if kplay == 1 && kfin == 0 then ;1. STOP AT START- OR ENDPOINT IF NO WRAPPING REQUIRED (kwrap=0) if kwrap == 0 then ; -- phasor freq so that 0-1 values match distance start-end kfqrel = kfqbas / (kend01-kstart01) andxrel phasor kfqrel ;index 0-1 for distance start-end ; -- final index for reading the table (0-1) andx = andxrel * (kend01-kstart01) + (kstart01) kfirst init 1 ;don't check condition below at the first k-cycle (always true) kndx downsamp andx kprevndx init 0 ;end of table check: ;for positive speed, check if this index is lower than the previous one if kfirst == 0 && kspeed > 0 && kndx < kprevndx then kfin = 1 ;for negative speed, check if this index is higher than the previous one else kprevndx = (kprevndx == kstart01 ? kend01 : kprevndx) if kfirst == 0 && kspeed < 0 && kndx > kprevndx then kfin = 1 endif kfirst = 0 ;end of first cycle in wrap = 0 endif ;sound out if end of table has not yet reached asig table3 andx, ift, 1 kprevndx = kndx ;next previous is this index ;2. WRAP BETWEEN START AND END (kwrap=1) elseif kwrap == 1 then kfqrel = kfqbas / (kend01-kstart01) ;same as for kwarp=0 andxrel phasor kfqrel andx = andxrel * (kend01-kstart01) + (kstart01) asig table3 andx, ift, 1 ;sound out ;3. START AT kstart BUT WRAP BETWEEN 0 AND END (kwrap=2) elseif kwrap == 2 then kw2first init 1 if kw2first == 1 then ;at first k-cycle: reinit wrap3phs ;reinitialize for getting the correct start phase kw2first = 0 endif kfqrel = kfqbas / kend01 ;phasor freq so that 0-1 values match distance start-end wrap3phs: andxrel phasor kfqrel, i(kstart01) ;index 0-1 for distance start-end rireturn ;end of reinitialization andx = andxrel * kend01 ;final index for reading the table asig table3 andx, ift, 1 ;sound out ;4. WRAP BETWEEN kstart AND END OF TABLE(kwrap=3) elseif kwrap == 3 then kfqrel = kfqbas / (1-kstart01) ;phasor freq so that 0-1 values match distance start-end andxrel phasor kfqrel ;index 0-1 for distance start-end andx = andxrel * (1-kstart01) + kstart01 ;final index for reading the table asig table3 andx, ift, 1 endif else ;if either not started or finished at wrap=0 asig = 0 ;don't produce any sound endif xout asig*kvol, kfin endop opcode BufPlay2, aak, iikkkkkk ;plays a stereo buffer iftL, iftR, kplay, kspeed, kvol, kstart, kend, kwrap xin aL,kfin BufPlay1 iftL, kplay, kspeed, kvol, kstart, kend, kwrap aR,kfin BufPlay1 iftR, kplay, kspeed, kvol, kstart, kend, kwrap xout aL, aR, kfin endop opcode In2, aa, kk ;stereo audio input kchn1, kchn2 xin ain1 inch kchn1 ain2 inch kchn2 xout ain1, ain2 endop opcode Key, kk, k ;returns '1' just in the k-cycle a certain key has been pressed (kdown) ; or released (kup) kascii xin ;ascii code of the key (e.g. 32 for space) key,k0 sensekey knew changed key kdown = (key == kascii && knew == 1 && k0 == 1 ? 1 : 0) kup = (key == kascii && knew == 1 && k0 == 0 ? 1 : 0) xout kdown, kup endop instr 1 giftL,giftR BufCrt2 3 ;creates a stereo buffer for 3 seconds gainL,gainR In2 1,2 ;read input channels 1 and 2 and write as global audio prints "PLEASE PRESS THE SPACE BAR ONCE AND GIVE AUDIO INPUT ON CHANNELS 1 AND 2.\n" prints "AUDIO WILL BE RECORDED AND THEN AUTOMATICALLY PLAYED BACK IN SEVERAL MANNERS.\n" krec,k0 Key 32 if krec == 1 then event "i", 2, 0, 10 endif endin instr 2 ; -- records the whole buffer and returns 1 at the end kfin BufRec2 gainL, gainR, giftL, giftR, 1, 0, 0, 0 if kfin == 0 then printks "Recording!\n", 1 endif if kfin == 1 then ispeed random -2, 2 istart random 0, 1 iend random 2, 3 iwrap random 0, 1.999 iwrap = int(iwrap) printks "Playing back with speed = %.3f, start = %.3f, end = %.3f, wrap = %d\n", p3, ispeed, istart, iend, iwrap aL,aR,kf BufPlay2 giftL, giftR, 1, ispeed, 1, istart, iend, iwrap if kf == 0 then printks "Playing!\n", 1 endif endif krel release if kfin == 1 && kf == 1 || krel == 1 then printks "PRESS SPACE BAR AGAIN!\n", p3 turnoff endif outs aL, aR endin </CsInstruments> <CsScore> i 1 0 1000 e </CsScore> </CsoundSynthesizer>
Csound contains a wide range of opcodes that offer a variety of 'ready-made' methods of playing back audio held in a function table. The oldest group of these opcodes are loscil and loscil3. Despite their age they offer some unique features such as the ability implement both sustain and release stage looping (in a variety of looping modes), their ability to read from stereo as well as mono function tables and their ability to read looping and base frequency data from the sound file stored in the function table. loscil and loscil3 were originally intended as the kernel mechanism for building a sampler.
For reading multichannel files of more than two channels, the more recent loscilx exists as an option.
loscil and loscil3 will only allow looping points to be defined at i-time. lposcil, lposcil3, lposcila, lposcilsa and lposcilsa2 will allow looping points to be changed a k-rate, while the note is playing.
It is worth not forgetting Csound's more exotic methods of playback of sample stored in function tables. mincer and temposcal use streaming vocoder techniques to faciliate independent pitch and time-stretch control during playback (this area is covered more fully in the chapter FOURIER ANALYSIS / SPECTRAL PROCESSING. sndwarp and sndwarpst similiarly faciliate independent pitch and playback speed control but through the technique of granular synthesis this area is covered in detail in the chapter GRANULAR SYNTHESIS.
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