Your standard Linux distribution may be able to perform some audio recording tasks, but sometimes, it helps to have a tuned system from the get-go; this is especially important in those cases where one just wants to get to the business of sound as quickly as possible.
Below is a list of repositories and full distributions to give you a jump-start on creating a workable audio production environment as quickly as possible. The full distributions will generally come fully-tweaked, removing the need for you to do the work yourself.
- Self-Contained Linux Distributions
For those who already have a Linux distribution installed, and don’t want to shift about, they can always choose to add a professional audio repository to their system, and just add the necessary software and tweaks that way.
Ubuntu is a popular Linux distribution, and actually has several different Audio Workstation package repositories available, each of which actually comes as fully-installable distributions in its own right.
- UbuntuPackage Repositories
- Ubuntu Studio (full distro)
Ubuntu does not have the monopoly on professional audio repositories, however, as other distributions have their own audio repositories available.
- Other Package Repositories
One thing to keep in mind: This list is absolutely not exhaustive, it’s just the distributions and repositories I’m aware of that have the settings and tools for media production available. Also, some of these distributions are seemly defunct, and have not updated in more than a year. For those, I will identify with “(old)”.
If you want something turnkey, something that will just up and work, and you’re willing to fork over some money on the solution, then you might want to check out Indamixx, a prebuilt system with a custom Linux distribution installed, as well as some custom commercial (and proprietary) applications installed (EnergyXT, LinuxDSP, Renoise, ArdourXChange).
Any Linux distribution can be set up as a studio distribution and work, so if you don’t have the above, don’t worry, with some tweaking, your personal choice can be sufficient as well!
Note: ArdourXChange has been reported as an attack site. The link has been removed for now, and will be returned when the issue has been resolved.