The Tools

Hello folks. Just wanted to share some thoughts about renoise, particularily about tools. There are people among renoise users that (if they think renoise misses something) make tools. I completely admire them because they help in development of renoise, and in fact I personally find many tools really help fix the things that our tracker lacks. It gives us a great advantage in comparison to DAW’s like Ableton, Reason, Fl studio and such.
Anyway tools seem to be somehow dismounted from renoise itself. I mean that they are available for download in tools, and are not incorporated into renoise, nor in the manual.
For example: I was a little dissapointed when I found out that I had to put sliced beat to patter editor in it’s original form manually. Later, I found Dblue’s “Slices to pattern”, and I thought: Yeah that’s exactly what I needed! Good work Dblue!. I would have saved loads of time if I knew about that tool earlier, or if it at least would be in tool browser. In fact, it almost made me quit renoise, and made me switch to Ableton Live, when slices set this way by default.
I’m not whining about renoise, I would just ask if tools could be added to current downloadable version, or maybe manual would be open for any forum user for editing, so anybody could add it’s tool description to a certain part of manual tool would refer to. I think that those little things that renoise misses often repulse people from it. But, I bet that if they knew that those things are already fixed in tools, many more people would love it. Another example: automations. Drawing effect or synth parameter envelopes in renoise is a little more difficult in most mainstream DAW’s, so people say fuck it. But if they new about automatron or automasher, they would know that envelopes in renoise are more fun than in any other audio software.

With the amount of tools and the common ground some of them cover I really do not think they should be integrated more robustly into Renoise! If Renoise was to do that with tools it would very quickly become the bloatware it tries hard to avoid coming! It is very clear that there are third party tools, they are hosted as part of the Renoise site, there is a dedicated forum discussing the different tools and for people to report bugs, suggest improvements or even suggest complete tool ideas. Plus with tools not being integrated they can be updated on their own timescale, not when Renoise has a new release coming out.

Some functions I surely do agree should be part of the native Renoise. The one you have mentioned is one that I agree falls into this camp. I did try and start a thread some time ago of which people feel really are functions that should be native but it never got much attention…

Maybe some kind of community pack would be a good idea, as it would be an easy way for new users to access tools, without being overwhelmed.
By community pack I’m thinking along the lines of a bundle of scripts/tools whose additions are useful and still in keeping with the base version of Renoise. So most definitely not a popularity contest nor a “best tools” pack. I think that could help with making newer users aware of the tools/scripts that are available.

It’s the responsibility of individual users and 3rd party devs for searching what’s out there and tool support respectively. I for one do not use many tools and prefer Renoise to run as leanly as possible.

Bundling Tools with Renoise does not prevent Tool Devs from providing updates
even after the Release was done. But bundling Tools might send out the wrong
message, that the Renoise developer Team provides any kind of “support” for
them. Also, which tools to bundle with Renoise? Who decides that?

I would rather see some of the functionality which proved useful as a
tool being implemented natively, like kazakore suggested. Some tools are also
trying to bend Renoise a lot, in ways that are either bug prone or very
inefficient. Some tools would also have a more intuitive GUI if they had more
direct access to Renoises functions - but this maybe could be enhanced by
enhancing the Lua API.

Also, tools are in fact already quite well integrated. They are all collected
on the Renoise website and the Forum, and Renoise even comes with an automated update
for Tools. It’s just important the the users know that there are tools which can
make life incredibly easier, and where to look for them.

The hunt for tools is then nothing more than the hunt for the best VST Synth or FX or sample.

At this time I’m not using even a single tool. I don’t like the “plugins” approach to software. I prefer stability and performance rather than the ability to expand features (for example I would prefer native synthesizers rather than vstis). Having this in mind, there are lots of tools which do good job but are not needed by me. In current state of affairs I just pretend there are no additional plugins and those who need them or simply like to have everything on board may download them from the site. I think it is a good solution and I wish it will stay this way.

Not exactly some tools are not present in the tool browser. For example Slices To Pattern

Ok so how about placing a short description of a tool in a manual’s part it refers to? If there is a problem with a certain thing, you look into manual, if you would read about certain thing, and have the tool description over there that improves it/fixes it? It would be awesome.

Tools are made by third parties, not by the Renoise developers. References to any particular tools does not belong in the Renoise manual! If people want to find a tool for a job they can come here.

This makes the most sense in my opinion.

A good example of this is Render slices to instrument tool for Renoise 2.7. This was an ‘obvious’ feature lacking from the 2.7 release and the tool provided a good method to test, receive user feedback and tweak before it was incorporated natively into 2.8.

I don’t disagree with you and I can see you point.

However, after much experience with the development of Renoise tools, the chance of a tool crashing Renoise is very remote, and unless the tool is written deliberately badly, there will be no performance impact to have it installed (they only use cpu when in use).

I’m not trying to persuade you into using any tools, hopefully just clearing up any potential misconceptions.

Indeed. ‘Core Renoise’ should not refer to anything outside of itself. But the lack of any tool documentation can be a problem. Since the tools page can now support hosting associated documentation I have started using this to provide tool manuals which I feel has helped enormously - I personally get less help requests on irc ;)

Maybe I misunderstood what Vietkong was referring to when he said manual then. I assumed he meant the Renoise one and the area in that which to tool is written to work within (doing this for all tools would be a huge job and make the manual an unwieldy mess!) I have previous suggest that some level of Help Page, Manual and Description might even be worth having as a requirement before acceptance for the official Tools page. Only problem is this might slow down submissions to such an extent that many of the really good one would only ever to be found through the forum…

Mess? Why? Just at the bottom of every section of the manual there could be written “Tools” and a small list of tools that would refer to the manual’s chapter or subchapter. As for slowing down submissions… This could be a problem, but look - you have to type tags in the tool’s description, so maybe you also could point the chapter they match to. I don’t think it would take much time.

Or maybe a disclaimer in the manual next to “tools” part of each chapter that those tools are not a renoise native thing and so on…

All I’m trying to do is to make the tools more accesible to the beginners as they often use only a manual and some youtube videos as a learning source.


Thanks mate. I know it’s not work but I’m so glad you agreed to put the few minutes in required!

How many tools do you think there are that do something related with samples in one way or any=other? I would say well, WELL into double figures. If you think listing every single one, with a link and a brief description, in the main Renoise manual wont make it a mess you obviously think very differently to me!

More importantly: What happened to the ability to Search just the Tools section of the website? The only Search field from is the one that searches the entire Renoise site. Really not that helpful for finding the tool to fill a requirement you might have!!

Volunteered! I could make a tool --> manual list. If it can’t be put on the manual site, i’ll think of something. How about that? Updates. Well I might take a look at those tools once in a while. Once every week or two. Besides, when a tool gets updated it won’t change it’s place in the list, because it will still apply to the same matter. I would have to edit it when new tool will be created.

I propose: Start a new thread, update the first post, user feedback as replies.

If after a few weeks what you actually write makes sense and the community is like “Yeah, this is useful!”, I will personally cut and paste your text into to the manual under Linux FAQ as Tools FAQ, and put a URL back to the aformentioned thread so that you get credit for your work.

So let’s agree that the steps, in order are:

  1. Create a new thread, the first post is the master document, you edit that first post and sculpt it into something useful that looks like a Wiki page. Call it Tools FAQ.
  2. I will sticky that thread.
  3. Replies are user feedback, you can reply too.
  4. After a few weeks, if it’s actually maintained and useful, instead of nothing, I will copy paste into the manual with a link back to this thread for the latest and greatest.
  5. Goto 3

We are in agreement?

Sure, I’ll create a new thread as soon as I’ll list all the tools accesible via tool browser, which should be today or tommorow. I’m not sure if I could make a decent document that will look like on wiki, but surely I’ll provide the content of it, so I’ll be posting raw in the new thread, at least at the beginning.

Continuing in: Tools organized

At the current moment, I am not using enough of the tools to benefit from seeing them as, “part of Renoise’s Core,” either as DSP or Meta or Native FX. I also like the flexibility of tools/plugins. If I don’t need/want it, than I don’t have to install it, and therefore the core program stays, “thin, fast, sleek, sexy.”

I understand how, “a slicer,” or slice to track, group slice, and other slicing functions, could make great feature requests.

@ carmazine: you’re missing out on a lot of cool stuff!

Probably already mentioned somewhere, but I think besides being able to update installed tools, you should be able to browse & install available tools from the tools-site within Renoise. Wasn’t Bantai working on something like this eons ago?

Fetch a list with short description of each tool & decide what you want to install. Fl studio has such functionality, also for downloading samples and it worked beautifully last time I checked.

One thing I really don’t like about the way tools are organized at the moment is that LOTS of cool ones don’t end up on tools page. The more new tools pop out on the forum the harder it is to find and notice them. There’s probably a great amount of tools that I have missed because there is no well organized way to browse them.