JACK Audio Connection Kit was designed from the ground up for professional audio work, and its design focuses on two key areas: synchronous execution of all clients, and low latency operation. It is a sound server daemon that provides real-time, low latency connections for both audio and MIDI data between applications that implement its API.

Jack is developed by the open source community led by Paul Devis; the group has also won the open source award for this work in 2004. The Jack server is free software, licensed under the GNU GPL; Jack library is licensed under GNU LGPL.

If you have a software that generates audio output, what all you would like to do with it?

  • Send the output to another software
  • Send it to two others
  • In turn if you are looking out for the cross-platform API that enables not only device sharing but also inter-application audio routing.

JACK is system for handling real-time, low latency audio (and MIDI).

  • connects a number of different applications to an audio device.
  • allows them to share audio between themselves.
  • Jack clients can run as normal applications OR can run within the JACK server (as a “plugin”)
  • Supports distributing audio processing across a network –  both: LANs as well as WANs.

Installation:

Wiki, documentation and faq can guide you to install Jack on your systems.

  • runs on GNU/Linux, Solaris, FreeBSD, OS X and Windows
  • Jackdmp a multiprocessor version of JACK.

The current version available are:

Jack 1 – JACK 0.121.3 – Download

Jack2 – JACK 1.9.9 – Download

Impact:

Jack has a significant impact and application in the industry; to provide the glimpse check the list of applications using Jack:

Audio file editorsAudacity: cross platform multitrack audio editor
- Gi_editor: software editor for Juno Gi
- GNUSound: multitrack sound editor for GNOME 1 & 2.
- Swami: advance instrument editor for MDI composition
And others.
Control applications- Aj-snapshot: snapshots of the connections made between JACK and/or ALSA clients
- Njconnect: based on naconnect
- Pyjack: python module that provides Jack interface
- ALSA Patch Bay
And others
Graphic applications- Blender: Open source 3D content creation suite
- Fluxus: graphical live coding environment
- Le Biniou: is a program which creates images from sound
And others
Live loopers- Freewheeling: live looping instrument
- Giada: free tool for DJs and live performers
- Loopcentre: live looper with functionality similar to the Boss LoopStation pedal
And others
Media Players- ALSA player: Can play mp3s, oggs, cds, etc.
- Aqualung: plays audio files from your filesystem and has the feature of inserting no gaps between adjacent tracks
- Kluppe: gtk-based loop player for files and live-input.
- Qmpp: Qt-based media player with a similar UI as XMMS or Winamp.
And others
Metering and Analysis- Baudline: time-frequency browser designed for scientific visualization
- Jaaa: spectrum analyser
- Tap Reverb editor: interactive room acoustic simulation.
And others
Mixers- Jack_mixer: GTK+JACK audio mixer app
- jackMaster: Master consol
- The Non Mixer: powerful, reliable and fast modular Digital Audio Mixer.
And more
Multi track sequencer- Ardour: multichannel hard disk recorder
- Ecasound: multitrack audio processing
- LMMS: free cross platform alternate to programs like FL Studio
And more
Radio- ARAS: open source radio automation system
- JMPX: software based FM stereo encoder
- Rotter: transmission tool for radio; writes new file every hour
Sound Generators- amSynth:analog moduling soft synth
- AlsaModularSynth: realtime modular synthesizer
- CheeseTracker: portable impulse tracker tone
- Din: software instrument and audio synthesizer
Video applications- KSubtitle: edit subtitles
- LiVES: video editing system
- Open Movie Editor:
VOIP- Asterisk
- I Hear U

Jack1 and Jack2:

Jack 2 was originally planned to replace Jack 1, but this is no longer so and they are considered equivalent implementations. Jack 1 and Jack 2 are equivalent implementations of the same protocol. Jack 2 was originally written to add multi-processor support and to rewrite the internals using C++. Programs compiled against Jack 1 will work with Jack 2 without recompile and vice versa.

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