Nama - multitrack recorder and digital audio workstation


nama [options] [project-name]


A multitrack audio application for recording, effects processing, editing, mixing, mastering and live performance. It can also perform general-purpose audio processing, such as 5.1 to stereo conversion. Nama uses Ecasound as the audio processing engine.

Audio projects

Projects in Nama are audio networks of tracks and buses. Tracks may contain one or more RIFF (.wav) files, as well as effects, sends, inserts, marks, regions, fades, edits and sequences. Tracks can host LADSPA, LV2 and Ecasound plugins. Audio regions may be altered, duplicated, time-shifted or replaced.

Audio processing is performed in realtime when a track is played and may be cached (frozen) to a new audio file.

Project data is serialized as JSON. The complete history is tracked by the git version control system. As a result, projects can be managed using branches and tags, and provide undo/redo.

Nama supports some MIDI functionality via midish.

Presets and templates

To facilitate reuse, a track's plugins and inserts can be stored as an effect chain. Effect profiles apply effect chains to groups of tracks. Project templates are for duplicating an entire project sans audio files.

Audio device

Nama performs Audio IO via JACK or ALSA. Soundcard IO goes via JACK, if running, with transparent fallback to ALSA.

Nama supports Ladish Level 1 session handling.

User interfaces

Nama has fully featured terminal command prompt, a Tk GUI, and experimental OSC and remote-command modes.

The command prompt can run Nama commands, Ecasound interactive-mode commands, commands for the midish MIDI recorder/player, shell commands and perl code. Commands and filenames can be autocompleted using the TAB key. Command history is available to browse with up and down arrows.

The help system provides documentation and keyword search covering Nama commands and effects-processing plugins.

The hotkey mode provides a convenient way to select, view, and modify effect parameters.


--gui, -g

Start Nama in GUI mode (default when Tk is available)

--text, -t

Start Nama in text mode

--config, -f

Specify configuration file (default: ~/.namarc)

--project-root, -d

Specify project root directory

--use-pwd, -p

Use current dir for all WAV and project files

--create-project, -c

Create project if it doesn't exist

--net-eci, -n

Use Ecasound's Net-ECI interface

--libecasoundc, -l

Use Ecasound's libecasoundc interface

--save-alsa, -a

Save/restore alsa state with project data

--help, -h

This help display

--regenerate-effects-cache, -r

Regenerate the effects data cache

Debugging options:

--no-state, -M

Don't load project state

--no-static-effects-data, -S

Don't load effects data

--no-static-effects-cache, -C

Don't load the effects data cache

--no-reconfigure-engine, -R

Don't autosave, autoreconfigure or git snapshot

--fake-jack, -J

Simulate JACK environment

--fake-alsa, -A

Simulate ALSA environment

--no-ecasound, -E

Don't spawn Ecasound process

--execute-command, -X

Supply a command to execute

--no-terminal, -T

Don't initialize terminal

--no-fades, -F

No fades on transport start/stop

--log, -L

Log these (comma separated) categories


The Ecasound audio engine is configured through use of chain setups that define the signal processing network.

Nama serves as an intermediary, taking high-level user commands, generating chain setups for user tasks such as recording, playback, mixing, etc., and running the audio engine.

Configuration Commands

Configuration commands affect future runs of the audio engine. For example, rec, play, mon and off determine whether the current track will get its audio stream from an external (e.g. live) source, whether an existing audio file will be played back, and whether a new audio file will be recorded. Nama responds to these commands by reconfiguring the engine and displaying the updated track status. See 'man ::ChainSetup' for details on how the chain setup created.

Realtime Commands

Once a chain setup is loaded and the engine is launched, commands can be issued to control the realtime behavior of the audio processing engine. These commands include transport start and stop, playback head repositioning commands such forward, rewind and setpos. Effects may be added, modified or removed while the engine is running.


General configuration of sound devices and program options is performed by editing the .namarc file, which is formatted as YAML. On Nama's first run, a default version of .namarc is placed in the user's home directory.


Invoked by default if Tk is installed, this interface provides a subset of Nama's functionality on two windows:

Main Window

The top section has buttons for creating, loading and saving projects, adding tracks, adding effects to tracks. In short, for setup.

Below are buttons for controlling the transport (start, stop and friends) and for setting marks.

The GUI project name bar and time display change color to indicate whether the upcoming operation will include live recording (red), mixdown (yellow) or playback (green).

Effects Window

The effects window provides sliders for each effect parameter of each track. Parameter range, defaults, and log/linear scaling hints are automatically detected. Text-entry widgets are used to enter parameters values for plugins without hinted ranges. Any parameter label can be clicked to add a parameter controller.

Waveform Window

Provides a conventional view with waveform and playback head.

Terminal Window

The command prompt is available the terminal window and provides access to all of Nama's functions.


Press the Enter key if necessary to get the command prompt, which will look something like this:

    nama untitled sax ('h' for help)>

In this instance, 'sax' is the current track in the 'untitled' default project.

When using buses, the bus is indicated before the track:

    nama untitled Strings/violin ('h' for help)>

At the prompt, you can enter Nama and Ecasound commands, Perl code preceded by eval or shell code preceded by !.

Multiple commands on a single line are allowed if delimited by semicolons. Usually the lines are split on semicolons and the parts are executed sequentially, however if the line begins with eval or ! the entire line (up to double semicolons ';;' if present) will be given to the corresponding interpreter.

You can access command history using up-arrow/down-arrow.

Type help for general help, help command for help with command, help foo for help with commands containing the string foo. help-effect foo bar lists all plugins/presets/controller containing both foo and bar. Tab-completion is provided for Nama commands, Ecasound-iam commands, plugin/preset/controller names, and project names.

Most commands have abbreviations, such as 'afx' for 'add-effect'. These are shown in the help listings.


Each track has a descriptive name (i.e. vocal) and an integer track-number assigned when the track is created. New user tracks initially belong to the Main bus.

Track output signals are usually mixed and pass through the Main track on the way to soundcard for monitoring.

The following sections describes track attributes and their effects.


Specifying 'mono' means the track has one input channel, which will be recorded as a mono WAV file. Mono track signals are automatically duplicated to stereo and a pan effect is provided.

Specifying 'stereo' for a track means that two channels of audio input will be recorded as an interleaved stereo WAV file. You can also use a 'stereo' declaration to avoid the automatic channel copy usually applied to single-channel sources.

Specifying N channels for a track ('set width N') means N successive input channels will be recorded as an N-channel interleaved WAV file.


Basic signal routing for each track is controlled by its setting to REC, MON, PLAY or OFF.

The MON setting prepares to connect the live track source.

The REC setting prepares to connect the live track source and record it to an audio file.

The PLAY setting enqueues an audio file for playback from disk as the track source.

The OFF setting tells Nama to remove the track from the audio network. OFF status may result for a track when no audio source is available. For example, a track with no recorded audio files will show OFF status when set to PLAY.

Track output

By default a track belongs to the Main bus and is routed to the Main track. This track provides a final fader before the signal goes via ALSA or JACK to the audio device.

Bus setting

Buses can force the status of their member tracks to OFF. Nama provides MON and OFF settings for buses. OFF (set by bus-off) removes all member tracks from the chain setup, MON (set by bus-mon restores them.

The mixplay command sets the Mixdown track to PLAY and the Main bus to OFF.

Version Numbers

Multiple audio files ("takes") can be recorded for each track. These are distinguished by a version number that increments with each recording run, i.e. sax_1.wav, sax_2.wav, etc. All audio files recorded in the same run have the same version number.

The version numbers for track playback can be selected at the bus or track level. By setting the bus version to 5, you can play back version 5 of several tracks at once. Version 5 could signify the fifth take of a song, or the fifth song of a live recording session.

The track version setting, if present, overrides the bus version setting. Setting the track version to zero restores control of the version number to the bus.

The Main bus version setting does not propagate to other buses.


Marks in Nama are similar to those in other audio editing software. One limitation is that mark positions are relative to the beginning of an Ecasound chain setup. If your project involves a single track, and you will be shortening the stream by setting a region to play, set any marks you need after defining the region.


The region command allows you to define endpoints for a portion of an audio file. You can then use the shift command to move the region to the desired time position.

If you use named marks as endpoints, the region will change if the mark's position is adjusted.

Each track can have one region definition. To create multiple regions, the new-region command takes a pair of marks to create a read-only copy of the current track with the specified region definition.

You can control this region as you would any other other track, shifting the start time, applying effects, adjusting volume, etc.

Using Tracks from Other Projects

The link-track clones a read-only track from another track, which may belong to a different project.


Each track gets volume and pan effects by default. New effects added using add-effect are applied before pan volume controls. You can position effects anywhere you choose using insert_effect or position-effect.


Fades can be placed on any track. They defined by mark position and duration. An additional volume operator, -eadb, is applied to each track to host the envelope controller that implements fades.

Sends and Inserts

The send command can route a track's post-fader output to a soundcard channel or JACK client in addition to the normal mixer input. Nama currently allows one aux send per track.

The add-insert command configures a pre- or post-fader send-and-return to soundcard channels or JACK clients. Wet and dry signal paths are provided, with a default setting of 100% wet.

Each track can have one pre-fader and one post-fader insert.


A bunch is just a list of track names. Using the for keyword with the name of a bunch will apply the commands that follow to all of the tracks in the bunch. A bunch can be created with the new-bunch command. A bus name can also be treated as a bunch.


Buses enable multiple tracks to be routed through a single mix track before feeding the Main mixer bus (or possibly, another bus.)

The following commands create a bus and assign three tracks to it. The mix track takes the name of the bus and is stereo by default.

        # create a bus named Strings with a same-named mix track
        add-bus Strings 

        # create tracks for the bus
        add-tracks violin cello bass

        # move the tracks from the Main bus (default) to the Strings bus
        for violin cello bass; move-to-bus Strings

        # use the mix track to control bus output volume
        Strings vol - 10


Submixes are a type of bus used to provide instrument monitors, or to send the outputs from multiple user tracks to an external program such as jconverter.


General Notes

While Nama can address tracks by either name and track number, Ecasound chain setups use the track number exclusively.

The Main track (mixer output) is always chain 1, the Mixdown track is always chain 2.

Nama uses Ecasound loop devices where necessary to connect two tracks, or to allow one track to have multiple inputs or outputs. Each loop device adds one buffer, which increases latency.

Flow Diagrams

Let's examine the signal flow from track 3, the first available user track. Assume track 3 is named "sax".

We will divide the signal flow into track and mixer sections. Parentheses show the chain id.

The stereo outputs of each user track terminate at Main_in, a loop device at the mixer input.

Track, REC status

    Sound device   --+---(3)----> Main_in
      /JACK client   |
                     +---(R3)---> sax_1.wav

REC status indicates that the source of the signal is the soundcard or JACK client. The input signal will be written directly to a file except in the special preview and doodle modes.

Track, PLAY status

    sax_1.wav ------(3)----> Main_in

Mixer, with mixdown enabled

In the second part of the flow graph, the mixed signal is delivered to an output device through the Main chain, which can host effects. Usually the Main track provides final control before audio output or mixdown.

    Main_in --(1)--> Main_out --+--------> Sound device
                                +-->(2)--> Mixdown_1.wav

Mastering Mode

In mastering mode (invoked by master-on and released master-off) the following network receives the Main track signal as input and provides an output to the soundcard or WAV file.

                     +- Low -+ 
                     |       |
    Main_in --- Eq --+- Mid -+--- Boost -> soundcard/wav_out
                     |       |
                     +- High + 

The Eq track hosts an equalizer.

The Low, Mid and High tracks each apply a bandpass filter, a compressor and a spatialiser.

The Boost track applies gain and a limiter.

These effects and their default parameters are defined in the configuration file .namarc.


The mixdown command configures Nama for mixdown. The Mixdown track is set to REC (equivalent to Mixdown rec) and the audio monitoring output is turned off (equivalent to Main off).

Mixdown proceeds after you start the transport.

As a convenience, Mixdown_nn.wav will be symlinked to <project-name_nn.wav> or <branch_name_nn.wav> in the project directory. The latter format is used branches other than the default master branch.) Corresponding encoded files are created if the mixdown_encodings option is set in .namarc. Acceptable values are a space-separated list. The default is "mixdown_encodings: ogg mp3".

Preview, Doodle and Eager Modes

These non-recording modes, invoked by preview and doodle commands tweak the routing rules for special purposes. Preview mode disables recording of WAV files to disk. Doodle mode disables PLAY inputs while excluding any tracks with the same source as a currently routed track. The arm command releases both preview and doodle modes.

The eager setting causes the engine to start immediately following a reconfiguration.

Saving Projects

If git is available, projects are saved automatically after each command and it is not necessary to explicitly save your work.

When you type save, Settings related to the state of the project are saved in the file State.json in the project directory. State.json is tracked by git.

save updates several other data files as well:

Aux.json, also in the project directory, contains data that is part of the project (such as command history, track comments, and current operating modes) but with no direct effect on the project audio.

global_effect_chains.json, in the project root directory (usually ~/nama) contains system and user defined effect chains.

Save without Git

save somename.json will save project state to a file of that name. Similarly get somename.json will load the corresponding file. The .json suffix may be omitted if "use_git: 0" is set in .namarc.

Save with Git

If git is available, Nama uses it to store snapshots of every step in the history of your project.

When you type save initial-mix, the latest snapshot is tagged with the name "initial-mix", which you can recall later with the command get initial-mix.

You can include a comment with the snapshot:

save initial-mix "sounds good enough to send to the front office"

Nama lets you create new branches, starting at any snapshot.

To start a new branch called compressed-mix starting at a snapshot called initial-mix you would say:

new-branch compressed-mix initial-mix

If you want to go back to working on the master branch, use branch master.

You can also issue native git commands at the Nama prompt.

Git history example

All projects begin on the "master" branch. Because this is the default branch, it is not displayed in the prompt. Otherwise "master" is not special in any way.

In the graphs below, the letters indicate named snapshots.

    create test-project
    save a
    save b
    save c
    ---a---b---c (master)
    get a
    save d
    save e
    save f
           d---e---f (a-branch)
    -----a----b---c (master)

Now, you want to go back to try something different at "c":

    get c
    save g
          d---e---f (a-branch)
    ----a----b---c (master)
                   g (c-branch CURRENT HEAD)

You could also go back to master, and restart from there:

    get master
    save h
    save i
          d---e---f (a-branch)
    ----a----b---c---h---i (master CURRENT HEAD)
                   g (c-branch)

Merging of branches is not supported.


When you type quit Nama will automatically save your work to State.json. If you don't want this behavior, use Ctrl-C to exit Nama.

Jack ports list file

Use source filename.ports to ask Nama to connect multiple JACK ports listed in a file filename.ports to the input port(s) of that track.

If the track is stereo, ports from the list are alternately connected to left and right channels.

Track edits

An edit consists of audio clips and data structures associated with a particular track and version. The edit replaces part of the original audio file, allowing you to fix wrong notes, or substitute one phrase for another. Behind the scenes, the host track becomes the mix track to a bus. Sources for the bus are the original audio track, and zero or more edits, each represented by a hidden track.

Each track can host multiple edits. Edits are non-destructive; they are achieved by using Ecasound's ability to crossfade and sequence.

Before creating the edit, select the track and version to be edited. You will now need to create three marks:

  • play start point =item * rec start point =item * rec end point

The edit will replace the audio between the rec start and rec end points.

There are two ways to set these points.

set-edit-points command

Position the playback head a few seconds before the edit. Enter the set-edit-points command. This will start the engine. Hit the P key three times to designate the playback start, punch-in and punch-out positions.

Specify points individually

Position the playback head at the position you want playback for the edit to start. Enter the set-play-start-mark command.

Use the same procedure to set the rec start and rec end positions using the set-rec-start-mark and set-rec-end-mark commands.

Create the edit

Enter the new-edit command to create the necessary tracks and data structures.

Use preview-edit to confirm the edit positions. The engine will run and you will hear the host track with the target region removed. Playback will be restricted to the edit region. You may use preview_out to hear the clip to be removed.

Use list-marks to see the edit marks and modify-mark to nudge them into perfect position.

Once you are satisfied with the mark positions, you are ready to record your edit.

Enter start-edit. Playback will begin at first mark. The replacement clip will be recorded from the source specified in the original track.

Each start-edit command will record an additional version on the edit track. redo-edit will delete (destructively) the most recent audio clip and begin recording anew.

destroy-edit deletes (destructively) the current edit.

You may specify another range for editing and use the editing procedure again as many times as you like. Edits on one track may not overlap.

Merging edits

merge-edits will recursively merge all edits applied to the current track and version, creating a new version for the track. This will freeze your edits against an accidental change in mark, region or version settings.

list-edits will label the edits by index and time.

end-edit-mode will restore normal playback mode


You can send commands to Nama from a remote process, and retrieve the result. Understand that this code opens a remote execution hole.

In .namarc you need something like:

      remote_control_port: 57000

Then Nama will set up a listener for remote commands.

The usual return value will be a single newline.

However, if you send an 'eval' command followed by perl code, the return value will be the result of the perl code executed with a newline appended. If the result is a list, the items will be joined by spaces into a single string.

For example, if you send this string:

      eval $this_track->name

The return value will be the name of the current track.

If the result is an object or data structure, it will be returned in a serialized form.


Help commands

help (h) - Display help on Nama commands.

    help [ <integer:help_topic_index> | <string:help_topic_name> | <string:command_name> ]

    help marks # display the help category marks and all commands containing marks help 6 # display help on the effects category help mfx # display help on modify-effect - shortcut mfx

help-effect (hfx he) - Display detailed help on LADSPA or LV2 effects.

    help-effect <string:label> | <integer:unique_id>

    help-effect 1970 # display help on Fons Adriaensen's parametric EQ (LADSPA) help-effect etd # prints a short message to consult Ecasound manpage, # where the etd chain operator is documented. hfx lv2-vocProc # display detailed help on the LV2 VocProc effect

find-effect (ffx fe) - Display one-line help for effects matching the search string(s).

    find-effect <string:keyword1> [ <string:keyword2>... ]

    find-effect compressor # List all effects containing "compressor" in their name or parameters fe feedback # List all effects matching "feedback" # (for example a delay with a feedback parameter)

General commands

exit (quit q) - Exit Nama, saving settings (the current project).


memoize - Cache WAV directory contents (default)


unmemoize - Disable WAV directory caching.


Transport commands

stop (s) - Stop transport. Stop the engine, when recording or playing back.


start (t) - Start the transport rolling


    rec # prepare the curent track to be recorded. start # Start the engine/transport rolling (play now!) stop # Stop the engine, cleanup, prepare to review

getpos (gp) - Get the current playhead position (in seconds).


    start # Start the engine. gp # Get the current position of the playhead. Where am I?

setpos (sp) - Set current playhead position (in seconds).

    setpos <float:position_seconds>

    setpos 65.5

forward (fw) - Move playback position forwards (in seconds).

    forward <float:increment_seconds>

    fw 23.7

rewind (rw) - Move playback position backwards (in seconds).

    rewind <float:decrement_seconds>

    rewind 6.5

to-start (beg) - Set the playback head to the start. A synonym for setpos 0.


to-end (end) - Set the playback head to end minus 10 seconds.


ecasound-start - Ecasound-only start. Nama will not monitor the transport. For diagnostic use.


ecasound-stop - Ecasound-only stop. Nama will not monitor the transport. For diagnostic use.


restart-ecasound - Restart the Ecasound process. May help if Ecasound has crashed or is behaving oddly.


preview (song) - Enter the preview mode. Configure Nama for playback and passthru of live inputs without recording (for mic test, rehearsal, etc.)


    rec # Set the current track to record from its source. preview # Enter the preview mode. start # Playback begins. You can play live, adjust effects, # forward, rewind, etc. stop # Stop processing audio. arm # Restore to normal recording/playback mode.

doodle (live) - Enter doodle mode. Passthru of live inputs without recording. No playback. Intended for rehearsing and adjusting effects.


    doodle # Switch into doodle mode. start # start the audio engine. (fool around) stop # Stop processing audio. arm # Return to normal mode, allowing playback and record to disk

Mix commands

mixdown (mxd) - Enter mixdown mode for subsequent engine runs. You will record a new mix each time you use the start command until you leave the mixdown mode using "mixoff".


    mixdown # Enter mixdown mode start # Start the transport. The mix will be recorded by the # Mixdown track. The engine will run until the # longest track ends. (After mixdown Nama places # a symlink to the WAV file and possibly ogg/mp3 # encoded versions in the project directory.) mixoff # Return to the normal mode.

mixplay (mxp) - Enter Mixdown play mode, setting user tracks to OFF and only playing the Mixdown track. Use "mixoff" to leave this mode.


    mixplay # Enter the Mixdown play mode. start # Play the Mixdown track. stop # Stop playback. mixoff # Return to normal mode.

mixoff (mxo) - Leave the mixdown or mixplay mode. Sets Mixdown track to OFF, user tracks to MON.


automix - Normalize track volume levels and fix DC-offsets, then mixdown.


master-on (mr) - Turn on the mastering mode, adding tracks Eq, Low, Mid, High and Boost, if necessary. The mastering setup allows for one EQ and a three-band multiband compression and a final boosting stage. Using "master-off" to leave the mastering mode.


    mr # Turn on master mode. start # Start the playback. # Now you can adjust the Boost or global EQ. stop # Stop the engine.

master-off (mro) - Leave mastering mode. The mastering network is disabled.


Track commands

add-track (add new) - Create a new audio track.

    add-track <string:name>

    add-track clarinet # create a mono track called clarinet with input # from soundcard channel 1.

add-midi-track (amt) - Create a new midi track.

    add-midi-track <string:name>

    add-midi-track clarinet

add-tracks - Create one or more new tracks in one go.

    add-tracks <string:name1> [ <string:name2>... ]

    add-tracks violin viola contra_bass

    link-track [<string:project-name>] <string:track_name> <string:link_name>

    link my_song_part1 Mixdown part_1 # Create a read-only track "part_1" in the current project # using files from track "Mixdown" in project "my_song_part_1". # link-track compressed_piano piano # Create a read-only track "compressed_piano" using files from # track "piano". This is one way to provide wet and dry # (processed and unprocessed) versions of same source. # Another way would be to use inserts.

import-audio (import) - Import a sound file (wav, ogg, mp3, etc.) to the current track, resampling it if necessary. The imported file is set as current version.

    import-audio <string:full_path_to_file> [ <integer:frequency> ]

    import /home/samples/bells.flac # import the file bells.flac to the current track import /home/music/song.mp3 44100 # import song.mp3, specifying the frequency

Midi commands

import-midi (im) - Import a MIDI song file (MIDI tracks only)

    import-midi <string:full_path_to_file>

Track commands

route-track (route rt) - Set source and send for a track (see 'source' and 'send' commands)

    route-track <string:source_id> <string:send_id>

set-track - Directly set current track parameters (use with care!).

    set-track <string:track_field> <value>

record (rec) - Set the current track to record its source. Creates the monitoring route if necessary. Recording to disk will begin on the next engine start. Use the "mon" or "off" commands to disable recording.


    rec # Set the current track to record. start # A new version (take) will be written to disk, # creating a file such as sax_1.wav. Other tracks # may be recording or playing back as well. stop # Stop the recording/playback, automatically enter playback mode

play - Set the current track to playback the currently selected version. Creates the monitoring route if necessary. The selected audio file will play the next time the engine starts.


mon - Create a monitoring route for the current track at the next opportunity.


off - Remove the monitoring route for the current track and all track I/O at the next opportunity. You can re-include it using "mon", "play" or "rec" commands.


source (src r) - Set the current track's input (source), for example to a soundcard channel, or JACK client name

    source <integer:soundcard_channel> | <string:jack_client_name> | <string:jack_port_name> <string:jack_ports_list> | | <string:track_name> | <string:loop_id> | 'jack' | 'null'

    source 3 # Take input from soundcard channel 3 (3/4 if track is stereo) # source null # Track's input is silence. This is useful for when an effect such # as a metronome or signal generator provides a source. # source bus Strings # set the Strings bus as source # source track trumpet # set the track trumpet as source # source LinuxSampler # set the JACK client named LinuxSampler as source # source synth:output_3 # use the signal from the JACK client synth, using the # port output_3 (see the jackd and jack_lsp manpages # for more information). # source jack # This leaves the track input exposed as JACK ports # such as Nama:sax_in_1 for manual connection. # source kit.ports # The JACK ports listed in the file kit.ports (if it exists) # will be connected to the track input. # # Ports are listed pairwise in the .ports files for stereo tracks. # This is convenient for use with the Hydrogen drumkit, # whose outputs use one JACK port per voice.

send (aux) - Set an aux send for the current track. Remove sends with remove-send .

    send <integer:soundcard_channel> | <string:jack_client_name> | <string:loop_id>

    send 3 # Send the track output to soundcard channel 3. send jconvolver # Send the track output to the jconvolver JACK client.

remove-send (nosend noaux) - Remove aux send from the current track.


stereo - Configure the current track to record two channels of audio


mono - Configure the current track to record one channel of audio


set-version (version ver) - Select a WAV file, by version number, for current track playback (Overrides a bus-level version setting)

    set-version <integer:version_number>

    piano # Select the piano track. version 2 # Select the second recorded version sh # Display information about the current track

destroy-current-wav - Remove the currently selected recording version from the current track after confirming user intent. This DESTRUCTIVE command removes the underlying audio file from your disk. Use with caution.


list-versions (lver) - List WAV versions of the current track. This will print the numbers.


    list-versions # May print something like: 1 2 5 7 9 # The other versions might have been deleted earlier by you.

vol (v) - Change or show the current track's volume.

    vol [ [ + | - | / | * ] <float:volume> ]

    vol * 1.5 # Multiply the current volume by 1.5 vol 75 # Set the current volume to 75 # Depending on your namarc configuration, this means # either 75% of full volume (-ea) or 75 dB (-eadb). vol - 5.7 # Decrease current volume by 5.7 (percent or dB) vol # Display the volume setting of the current track.

mute (c cut) - Mute the current track by reducing the volume parameter. Use "unmute" to restore the former volume level.


unmute (nomute C uncut) - Restore previous volume level. It can be used after mute or solo.


unity - Set the current track's volume to unity. This will change the volume to the default value (100% or 0 dB).


    vol 55 # Set volume to 55 unity # Set volume to the unity value. vol # Display the current volume (should be 100 or 0, # depending on your settings in namarc.)

solo (sl) - Mute all tracks but the current track or the tracks or bunches specified. You can reverse this with nosolo.

    solo [ <strack_name_1> | <string:bunch_name_1> ] [ <string:track_name_2 | <string:bunch_name_2> ] ...

    solo # Mute all tracks but the current track. nosolo # Unmute all tracks, restoring prior state. solo piano bass Drums # Mute everything but piano, bass and Drums.

nosolo (nsl) - Unmute all tracks which have been muted by a solo command. Tracks that had been muted before the solo command stay muted.


all - Unmute all tracks that are currently muted


    piano # Select track piano mute # Mute the piano track. sax # Select the track sax. solo # Mute other tracks nosolo # Unmute other tracks (piano is still muted) all # all tracks play

pan (p) - Change or display the current panning position of the current track. Panning is moving the audio in the stereo panorama between right and left. Position is given in percent. 0 is hard left and 100 hard right, 50% is dead centre.

    pan [ <float:pan_position_in_percent> ]

    pan 75 # Pan the track to a position between centre and hard right p 50 # Move the current track to the centre. pan # Show the current position of the track in the stereo panorama.

pan-right (pr) - Pan the current track hard right. this is a synonym for pan 100. Can be reversed with pan-back.


pan-left (pl) - Pan the current track hard left. This is a synonym for pan 0. Can be reversed with pan-back.


pan-center (pc) - Pan the current track to the centre. This is a synonym for pan 50. Can be reversed with pan-back.


pan-back (pb) - Restore the current track's pan position prior to pan-left, pan-right or pan-center commands.


show-tracks (lt show) - Show a list of tracks, including their index number, volume, pan position, recording status and source.


show-tracks-all (sha showa) - Like show-tracks, but includes hidden tracks as well. Useful for debugging.


Bus commands

show-bus (shb) - List tracks in current or named bus

    show-bus [ <string:busname> ]

Track commands

show-track (sh -fart) - Display full information about the current track: index, recording status, effects and controllers, inserts, the selected WAV version, and signal width (channel count).


Setup commands

show-mode (shm) - Display the current record/playback mode. this will indicate the mode (doodle, preview, etc.) and possible record/playback settings.


Track commands

show-track-latency (shl) - Display the latency information for the current track.


Diagnostics commands

show-latency-all (shla) - Dump all latency data.


Track commands

set-region (srg) - Specify a playback region for the current track using marks. Can be reversed with remove-region.

    set-region <string:start_mark_name> <string:end_mark_name>

    sax # Select "sax" as the current track. setpos 2.5 # Move the playhead to 2.5 seconds. mark sax_start # Create a mark sp 120.5 # Move playhead to 120.5 seconds. mark sax_end # Create another mark set-region sax_start sax_end # Play only the audio from 2.5 to 120.5 seconds.

add-region - Make a copy of the current track using the supplied a region definition. The original track is untouched.

    add-region <string:start_mark_name> | <float:start_time> <string:end_mark_name> | <float:end_time> [ <string:region_name> ]

    sax # Select "sax" as the current track. add-region sax_start 66.7 trimmed_sax # Create "trimmed_sax", a copy of "sax" with a region defined # from mark "sax_start" to 66.7 seconds.

remove-region (rrg) - Remove the region definition from the current track. Remove the current track if it is an auxiliary track.


shift-track (shift playat pat) - Choose an initial delay before playing a track or region. Can be reversed by unshift-track.

    shift-track <string:start_mark_name> | <integer:start_mark_index | <float:start_seconds>

    piano # Select "piano" as current track. shift 6.7 # Move the start of track to 6.7 seconds.

unshift-track (unshift) - Restore the playback start time of a track or region to 0.


modifiers (mods mod) - Add/show modifiers for the current track (man ecasound for details). This provides direct control over Ecasound track modifiers It is not needed for normal work.

    modifiers [ Audio file sequencing parameters ]

    modifiers select 5 15.2 # Apply Ecasound's select modifier to the current track. # The usual way to accomplish this is with a region definition.

nomodifiers (nomods nomod) - Remove modifiers from the current track.


normalize (ecanormalize) - Apply ecanormalize to the current track version. This will raise the gain/volume of the current track as far as possible without clipping and store it that way on disk. Note: this will permanently change the file.


fixdc (ecafixdc) - Fix the DC-offset of the current track using ecafixdc. Note: This will permanently change the file.


autofix-tracks (autofix) - Apply ecafixdc and ecanormalize to all current versions of all tracks, set to playback (MON).


remove-track - Remove the current track with its effects, inserts, etc. Audio files are unchanged.


Group commands

bus-version (bver gver) - Set the default monitoring version for tracks in the current bus.


bus-on - Restore tracks belonging to bus after bus-off


bus-off - Turn off tracks belonging to current bus


add-bunch (abn) -

    add-bunch <string:bunch_name> [ <string:track_name_1> | <integer:track_index_1> ] ...

    add-bunch strings violin cello bass # Create a bunch "strings" with tracks violin, cello and bass. for strings; mute # Mute all tracks in the strings bunch. for strings; vol * 0.8 # Lower the volume of all tracks in bunch "strings" by a # a factor of 0.8.

list-bunches (lbn) - Display a list of all bunches and their tracks.


remove-bunch (rbn) - Remove the specified bunches. This does not remove the tracks, only the grouping.

    remove-bunch <string:bunch_name> [ <string:bunch_name> ] ...

add-to-bunch (atbn) - Add track(s) to an existing bunch.

    add-to-bunch <string:bunch_name> <string:track1> [ <string:track2> ] ...

    add-to-bunch woodwind oboe sax flute

Project commands

commit (cm) - Commit Nama's current state

    commit <string:message>

tag - Git tag the current branch HEAD commit

    tag <string:tag_name> [<string:message>]

branch (br) - Change to named branch

    branch <string:branch_name>

list-branches (lb lbr) - List branches


new-branch (nbr) - Create a new branch

    new-branch <string:new-branch_name> [<string:existing_branch_name>]

save-state (keep save) - Save the project settings as file or git snapshot

    save-state [ <string:settings_target> [ <string:message> ] ]

get-state (get recall retrieve) - Retrieve project settings from file or snapshot

    get-state <string:settings_target>

list-projects (lp) - List all projects. This will list all Nama projects, which are stored in the Nama project root directory.


new-project (create) - Create or open a new empty Nama project.

    new-project <string:new-project-name>

    create jam

load-project (load) - Load an existing project. This will load the project from the default project state file. If you wish to load a project state saved to a user specific file, load the project and then use get-state.

    load-project <string:existing_project-name>

    load my_old_song

project-name (project name) - Display the name of the current project.


new-project-template (npt) - Make a project template based on the current project. This will include tracks and busses.

    new-project-template <string:template_name> [ <string:template_description> ]

    new-project_template my_band_setup "tracks and busses for bass, drums and me"

use-project-template (upt apt) - Use a template to create tracks in a newly created, empty project.

    use-project-template <string:template_name>

    apt my_band_setup # Will add all the tracks for your basic band setup.

list-project-templates (lpt) - List all project templates.


destroy-project-template - Remove one or more project templates.

    destroy-project-template <string:template_name1> [ <string:template_name2> ] ...

Setup commands

generate (gen) - Generate an Ecasound chain setup for audio processing manually. Mainly useful for diagnostics and debugging.


arm - Generate and connect a setup to record or playback. If you are in dodle or preview mode, this will bring you back to normal mode.


arm-start (arms) - Generate and connect the setup and then start. This means, that you can directly record or listen to your tracks.


connect (con) - Connect the setup, so everything is ready to run. Ifusing JACK, this means, that Nama will connect to all the necessary JACK ports.


disconnect (dcon) - Disconnect the setup. If running with JACK, this will disconnect from all JACK ports.


show-chain-setup (chains) - Show the underlying Ecasound chain setup for the current working condition. Mainly useful for diagnostics and debugging.


loop (l) - Loop the playback between two points. Can be stopped with loop_disable

    loop <string:start_mark_name> | <integer:start_mark_index> | <float:start_time_in_secs> <string:end_mark_name> | <integer:end_mark_index> | <float:end_time_in_secs>

    loop 1.5 10.0 # Loop between 1.5 and 10.0 seconds. loop 1 5 # Loop between marks with indices 1 and 5, see list-marks. loop sax_start 12.6 # Loop between mark sax_start and 12.6 seconds.

noloop (nl) - Disable looping.


Effect commands

add-controller (acl) - Add a controller to an effect (current effect, by default). Controllers can be modified by using mfx and removed using rfx.

    add-controller [ <string:operator_id> ] <string:effect_code> [ <float:param1> <float:param2> ] ...

    add-effect etd 100 2 2 50 50 # Add a stero delay of 100ms. # the delay will get the effect ID E . # Now we want to slowly change the delay to 200ms. acl E klg 1 100 200 2 0 100 15 200 # Change the delay time linearly (klg)

add-effect (afx) - Add an effect

    add-effect [ (before <fx_alias> | first | last ) ] <fx_alias> [ <float:param1> <float:param2>... ] "before", "first" and "last" can be abbreviated "b", "f" and "l", respectively.

    We want to add the decimator effect (a LADSPA plugin). help-effect decimator # Print help about its paramters/controls. # We see two input controls: bitrate and samplerate afx decimator 12 22050 # prints "Added GO (Decimator)" # We have added the decimator with 12bits and a sample rate of 22050Hz. # GO is the effect ID, which you will need to modify it.

add-effect-last (afxl) - Same as add-effect last

    add-effect-last <fx_alias> [ <float:param1> <float:param2>... ]

add-effect-first (afxf) - Same as add-effect first

    add-effect-first <fx_alias> [ <float:param1> <float:param2>... ]

add-effect-before (afxb insert-effect ifx) - Same as add-effect before

    add-effect-before <fx_alias> <fx_alias> [ <float:param1> <float:param2>... ]

modify-effect (mfx) - Modify effect parameter(s).

    modify-effect [ <fx_alias> ] <integer:parameter> [ + | - | * | / ] <float:value> fx_alias can be: a position, effect ID, nickname or effect code

    To change the roomsize of our reverb effect to 62 lfx # We see that reverb has unique effect ID AF and roomsize is the # first parameter. mfx AF 1 62 # mfx AF,BG 1 75 # Change the first parameter of both AF and BG to 75. # mfx CE 6,10 -3 # Change parameters 6 and 10 of effect CE to -3 # mfx D 4 + 10 # Increase the fourth parameter of effect D by 10. # mfx A,B,C 3,6 * 5 # Adjust parameters 3 and 6 of effect A, B and C by a factor of 5.

remove-effect (rfx) - Remove effects. They don't have to be on the current track.

    remove-effect <fx_alias1> [ <fx_alias2> ] ...

position-effect (pfx) - Position an effect before another effect (use 'ZZZ' for end).

    position-effect <string:id_to_move> <string:position_id>

    position-effect G F # Move effect with unique ID G immediately before effect F

show-effect (sfx) - Show information about an effect, defaulting to current effect

    show-effect [ <string:effect_id1> ] [ <string:effect_id2> ] ...

    sfx # Display name, unique ID and parameters/controls of the current effect. sfx H # Display info on effect with unique ID H. H becomes the current effect.

dump-effect (dfx) - Dump all data of current effect object


list-effects (lfx) - Print a short list of all effects on the current track, only including unique ID and effect name.


General commands

hotkeys (hk) - Use this command to set the hotkey mode. (You may also use the hash symbol '#'.) Hit the Escape key to return to command mode.


hotkeys-always (hka) - Activate hotkeys mode after each command.


hotkeys-off (hko) - Disable hotkeys always mode


hotkeys-list (hkl lhk) - List hotkey bindings


Effect commands

add-insert (ain) - Add an external send/return insert to current track.

    add-insert External: ( pre | post ) <string:send_id> [ <string:return_id> ] Local wet/dry: local

    add-insert pre jconvolver # Add a prefader insert. The current track signal is sent # to jconvolver and returned to the vol/pan controls. add-insert post jconvolver csound # Send the current track postfader signal (after vol/pan # controls) to jconvolver, getting the return from csound. guitar # Select the guitar track ain local # Create a local insert guitar-1-wet # Select the wet arm afx G2reverb 50 5.0 0.6 0.5 0 -16 -20 # add a reverb afx etc 6 100 45 2.5 # add a chorus effect on the reverbed signal guitar # Change back to the main guitar track wet 25 # Set the balance between wet/dry track to 25% wet, 75% dry.

set-insert-wetness (wet) - Set wet/dry balance of the insert for the current track. The balance is given in percent, 0 meaning dry and 100 wet signal only.

    set-insert-wetness [ pre | post ] <n_wetness>

    wet pre 50 # Set the prefader insert to be balanced 50/50 wet/dry. wet 100 # Simpler if there's only one insert

remove-insert (rin) - Remove an insert from the current track.

    remove-insert [ pre | post ]

    rin # If there is only one insert on the current track, remove it. remove-insert post # Remove the postfader insert from the current track.

ctrl-register (crg) - List all Ecasound controllers. Controllers include linear controllers and oscillators.


preset-register (prg) - List all Ecasound effect presets. See the Ecasound manpage for more detail on effect_presets.


ladspa-register (lrg) - List all LADSPA plugins, that Ecasound/Nama can find.


Mark commands

list-marks (lmk lm) - List all marks with index, name and their respective positions in time.


to-mark (tmk tom) - Move the playhead to the named mark or mark index.

    to-mark <string:mark_name> | <integer:mark_index>

    to-mark sax_start # Jump to the position marked by sax_mark. tmk 2 # Move to the mark with the index 2.

add-mark (mark amk k) - Drop a new mark at the current playback position. this will fail, if a mark is already placed on that exact position.

    add-mark [ <string:mark_id> ]

    mark start # Create a mark named "start" at the current position.

remove-mark (rmk) - Remove a mark

    remove-mark [ <string:mark_name> | <integer:mark_index> ]

    remove-mark start # remove the mark named start rmk 16 # Remove the mark with the index 16. rmk # Remove the current mark

next-mark (nmk) - Move the playhead to the next mark.


previous-mark (pmk) - Move the playhead to the previous mark.


name-mark - Give a name to the current mark.

    name-mark <string:mark_name>

modify-mark (move-mark mmk) - Change the position (time) of the current mark.

    modify-mark [ + | - ] <float:seconds>

    move-mark + 2.3 # Move the current mark 2.3 seconds forward from its mmk 16.8 # Move the current mark to 16.8 seconds, no matter, where it is now.

Diagnostics commands

engine-status (egs) - Display the Ecasound audio processing engine status.


dump-track (dump) - Dump current track data.


dump-group (dumpg) - Dump group settings for user tracks.


dump-all (dumpa) - Dump most internal state data.


dump-io - Show chain inputs and outputs.


Help commands

list-history (lh) - List the command history. Every project stores its own command history.


Bus commands

add-submix-cooked - Create a submix using all tracks in bus "Main"

    add-submix-cooked <string:name> <destination>

    add-submix-cooked front_of_house 7 # send a custom mix named "front_of_house" # to soundcard channels 7/8

add-submix-raw (asr) - Add a submix using tracks in Main bus (unprocessed signals, lower latency)

    add-submix-raw <string:name> <destination>

    asbr Reverb jconv # Add a raw send bus called Reverb, with its output

add-bus (abs) - Add a sub bus. This is a bus, as known from other DAWs. The default output goes to a mix track and that is routed to the mixer (the Main track). All busses begin with a capital letter!

    add-bus <string:name> [ <string:track_name> | <string:jack_client> | <integer:soundcard_channel> ]

    abs Brass # Add a bus, "Brass", routed to the Main bus (e.g. mixer) abs special csound # Add a bus, "special" routed to JACK client "csound"

update-submix (usm) - Include tracks added since the submix was created.

    update-submix <string:name>

    update-submix Reverb

remove-bus - Remove a bus or submix

    remove-bus <string:bus_name>

list-buses (lbs) - List buses and their parameters (TODO).


set-bus (sbs) - Set bus parameters. This command is intended for advanced users.

    set-bus <string:busname> <key> <value>

Effect commands

overwrite-effect-chain (oec) - Create a new effect chain, overwriting an existing one of the same name.

    overwrite-effect-chain Same as for new-effect-chain

new-effect-chain (nec) - Create an effect chain, a named list of effects with all parameter settings. Useful for storing effect setups for particular instruments.

    new-effect-chain <string:name> [ <effect_id_1> <effect_id_2>... ]

    new-effect-chain my_piano # Create a new effect chain, "my_piano", storing all # effects and their settings from the current track # except the fader (vol/pan) settings. nec my_guitar A C F G H # Create a new effect chain, "my_guitar", # storing the effects with IDs A, C, F, G, H and # their respective settings.

delete-effect-chain (dec destroy-effect-chain) - Delete an effect chain definition. Does not affect the project state. This command is not reversible by undo.

    delete-effect-chain <string:effect_chain_name>

find-effect-chains (fec lec) - Dump effect chains, filtering on key pairs (if provided)

    find-effect-chains [ <string:key_1> <string:value_1> ] ...

    fec # List all effect chains with their effects.

find-user-effect-chains (fuec leca) - List all *user* created effect chains, matching key/value pairs, if provided.

    find-user-effect-chains [ <string:key_1> <string:value_1> ] ...

bypass-effects (bypass bfx) - Bypass effects on the current track. With no parameters default to bypassing the current effect.

    bypass-effects [ <string:effect_id_1> <string:effect_id_2>... | 'all' ]

    bypass all # Bypass all effects on the current track, except vol and pan. bypass AF # Only bypass the effect with the unique ID AF.

bring-back-effects (restore-effects bbfx) - Restore effects. If no parameter is given, the default is to restore the current effect.

    bring-back-effects [ <string:effect_id_1> <string:effect_id_2> ... | 'all' ]

    bbfx # Restore the current effect. restore_effect AF # Restore the effect with the unique ID AF. bring-back-effects all # Restore all effects.

new-effect-profile (nep) - Create a new effect profile. An effect profile is a named group of effect chains for multiple tracks. Useful for storing a basic template of standard effects for a group of instruments, like a drum kit.

    new-effect-profile <string:bunch_name> [ <string:effect_profile_name> ]

    add-bunch Drums snare toms kick # Create a buch called Drums. nep Drums my_drum_effects # Create an effect profile, call my_drum_effects

apply-effect-profile (aep) - Apply an effect profile. this will add all the effects in it to the list of tracks stored in the effect profile. Note: You must give the tracks the same names as in the original project, where you created the effect profile.

    apply-effect-profile <string:effect_profile_name>

destroy-effect-profile - Delete an effect profile. This will delete the effect profile definition from your disk. All projects, which use this effect profile will NOT be affected.

    destroy-effect-profile <string:effect_profile_name>

list-effect-profiles (lep) - List all effect profiles.


show-effect-profiles (sepr) - List effect profile.


full-effect-profiles (fep) - Dump effect profile data structure.


Track commands

cache-track (cache ct bounce freeze) - Cache the current track. Same as freezing or bouncing. This is useful for larger projects or low-power CPUs, since effects do not have to be recomputed for subsequent engine runs. Cache_track stores the effects-processed output of the current track as a new version (WAV file) which becomes the current version. The current effects, inserts and region definition are removed and stored. To go back to the original track state, use the uncache-track command. The show-track display appends a "c" to version numbers created by cache-track (and therefore reversible by uncache)

    cache-track [ <float:additional_processing_time> ]

    cache 10 # Cache the curent track and append 10 seconds extra time,

Effect commands

uncache-track (uncache unc) - Select the uncached track version. This restores effects, but not inserts.


General commands

do-script (do) - Execute Nama commands from a file in the main project's directory or in the Nama project root directory. A script is a list of Nama commands, just as you would type them on the Nama prompt.

    do-script <string:filename>

    do prepare_my_drums # Execute the script prepare_my_drums.

scan - Re-read the project's .wav directory. Mainly useful for troubleshooting.


Effect commands

add-fade (afd fade) - Add a fade-in or fade-out to the current track.

    add-fade ( in | out ) marks/times (see examples)

    fade in mark1 # Fade in,starting at mark1 and using the # default fade time of 0.5 seconds. fade out mark2 2 # Fade out over 2 seconds, starting at mark2 . fade out 2 mark2 # Fade out over 2 seconds, ending at mark2 . fade in mark1 mark2 # Fade in starting at mark1, ending at mark2 .

remove-fade (rfd) - Remove a fade from the current track.

    remove-fade <integer:fade_index_1> [ <integer:fade_index_2> ] ...

    list-fade # Print a list of all fades and their tracks. rfd 2 # Remove the fade with the index (n) 2.

list-fade (lfd) - List all fades.


Track commands

add-comment (comment ac) - Add a comment to the current track (replacing any previous comment). A comment maybe a short discription, notes on instrument settings, etc.

    add-comment <string:comment>

    ac "Guitar, treble on 50%"

remove-comment (rc) - Remove a comment from the current track.


show-comment (sc) - Show the comment for the current track.


show-comments (sca) - Show all track comments.


add-version-comment (avc) - Add a version comment (replacing any previous user comment). This will add a comment for the current version of the current track.

    add-version-comment <string:comment>

    avc "The good take with the clear 6/8"

remove-version-comment (rvc) - Remove version comment(s) from the current track.


show-version-comment (svc) - Show version comment(s) of the curent track.


show-version-comments-all (svca) - Show all version comments for the current track.


add-system-version-comment (asvc) - Set a system version comment. Useful for testing and diagnostics.

    add-system-version-comment <string:comment>

Edit commands

new-edit (ned) - Create an edit for the current track and version.


set-edit-points (sep) - Mark play-start, record-start and record-end positions for the current edit.


list-edits (led) - List all edits for current track and version.


select-edit (sed) - Select an edit to modify or delete. After selection it is the current edit.

    select-edit <integer:edit_index>

end-edit-mode (eem) - Switch back to normal playback/record mode. The track will play full length again. Edits are managed via a sub- bus.


destroy-edit - Remove an edit and all associated audio files. If no parameter is given, the default is to destroy the current edit. Note: The data will be lost permanently. Use with care!

    destroy-edit [ <integer:edit_index> ]

preview-edit-in (pei) - Play the track region without the edit segment.


preview-edit-out (peo) - Play the removed edit segment.


play-edit (ped) - Play a completed edit.


record-edit (red) - Record an audio file for the current edit.


edit-track (et) - Set the edit track as the current track.


host-track-alias (hta) - Set the host track alias as the current track.


host-track (ht) - Set the host track (edit sub-bus mix track) as the current track.


version-mix-track (vmt) - Set the version mix track as the current track.


play-start-mark (psm) - Select (and move to) play start mark of the current edit.


rec-start-mark (rsm) - Select (and move to) rec start mark of the current edit.


rec-end-mark (rem) - Select (and move to) rec end mark of the current edit.


set-play-start-mark (spsm) - Set play-start-mark to the current playback position.


set-rec-start-mark (srsm) - Set rec-start-mark to the current playback position.


set-rec-end-mark (srem) - Set rec-end-mark to current playback position.


disable-edits (ded) - Turn off the edits for the current track and playback the original WAV file. This will remove the edit bus.


merge-edits (med) - Mix edits and original into a new host-track. this will write a new audio file to disk and the host track will have a new version for this.


Track commands

explode-track - Make the current track into a sub bus, with one track for each version.


move-to-bus (mtb) - Move the current track to another bus. A new track is always in the Main bus. So to reverse this action use move-to-bus Main .

    move-to-bus <string:bus_name>

    asub Drums # Create a new sub bus, called Drums. snare # Make snare the current track. mtb Drums # Move the snare track into the sub bus Drums.

promote-version-to-track (pvt) - Create a read-only track using the specified version of the current track.

    promote-version-to-track <integer:version_number>

General commands

read-user-customizations (ruc) - Re-read the user customizations file ''.


Setup commands

limit-run-time (lr) - Stop recording after the last audio file finishes playing. Can be turned off with limit-run-time_off.

    limit-run-time [ <float:additional_seconds> ]

limit-run-time-off (lro) - Disable the recording stop timer.


offset-run (ofr) - Record/play from a mark, rather than from the start, i.e. 0.0 seconds.

    offset-run <string:mark_name>

offset-run-off (ofro) - Turn back to starting from 0.


General commands

view-waveform (wview) - Launch mhwavedit to view/edit waveform of the current track and version. This requires to start Nama on a graphical terminal, like xterm or gterm or from GNOME via alt+F2 .


edit-waveform (wedit) - Launch audacity to view/edit the waveform of the current track and version. This requires starting Nama on a graphical terminal like xterm or gterm or from GNOME starting Nama using alt+F2 .


Setup commands

rerecord (rerec) - Record as before. This will set all the tracks to record, which have been recorded just before you listened back.


    for piano guitar;rec # Set piano and guitar track to record. # do your recording and ilstening. # You want to record another version of both piano and guitar: rerec # Sets piano and guitar to record again.

Track commands

analyze-level (anl) - Print Ecasound amplitude analysis for current track. This will show highest volume and statistics.


General commands

for - Execute command(s) for several tracks.

    for <string:track_name_1> [ <string:track_name_2>} ... ; <string:commands>

    for piano guitar; vol - 3; pan 75 # reduce volume and pan right for snare kick toms cymbals; mtb Drums # move tracks to bus Drums

Project commands

git - Execute git command in the project directory

    git <string:command_name> [arguments]

Track commands

edit-rec-setup-hook (ersh) - Edit the REC hook script for current track


edit-rec-cleanup-hook (erch) - Edit the REC cleanup hook script for current track


remove-fader-effect (rffx) - Remove vol pan or fader on current track

    remove-fader-effect vol | pan | fader

rename-track - Rename a track and its WAV files

    rename-track <string:old_track> <string:new_track>

Sequence commands

new-sequence (nsq) - Define a new sequence

    new-sequence <string:name> <track1, track2,...>

select-sequence (slsq) - Select named sequence as current sequence


list-sequences (lsq) - List all user sequences


show-sequence (ssq) - Display clips making up current sequence


append-to-sequence (asq) - Append items to sequence

    append-to-sequence [<string:name1>,...]

    asq chorus # append chorus track to current sequence asq # append current track to current sequence

insert-in-sequence (isq) - Insert items into sequence before index i

    insert-in-sequence <string:name1> [<string:name2>,...] <integer:index>

remove-from-sequence (rsq) - Remove items from sequence

    remove-from-sequence <integer:index1> [<integer:index2>,...]

delete-sequence (dsq) - Delete entire sequence

    delete-sequence <string:sequence>

add-spacer (asp) - Add a spacer to the current sequence, in specified position, or appending (if no position is given)

    add-spacer <float:duration> [<integer:position>]

convert-to-sequence (csq) - Convert the current track to a sequence


merge-sequence (msq) - Cache the current sequence mix track, and set it to PLAY


snip - Create a sequence from the current track by removing the region(s) defined by mark pair(s). Not supported if the current track is already a sequence.

    snip <mark_pair1> [<mark_pair2>...]

    snip cut1-start cut1-end cut2-start cut2-end This removes cut1 and cut2 regions from the current track by creating a sequence.

compose (compose-sequence compose-into-sequence) - Compose a new sequence using the region(s) of the named track defined by mark pair(s). If the sequence of that name exists, append the regions to that sequence (compose-into-sequence).

    compose <string:sequence_name> <string:trackname> <mark_pair1> [<mark_pair2>...]

    compose speeches conference-audio speaker1-start speaker1-end speaker2-start speaker2-end This creates a "speeches" sequence with two clips for speaker1 and speaker2.

General commands

undo - Roll back last commit (use "git log" to see specific commands) Note: redo is not supported yet


redo - Restore the last undone commit (TODO)


show-head-commit (show-head last-command last) - Show the last commit, which undo will roll back. A commit may contain multiple commands. The last_* aliases are meaningful when autosave: undo is set. In that case each commit contains only a single command


Mode commands

eager - Set eager mode

    eager on | off

Engine commands

new-engine (neg) - Start a named Ecasound engine, or bind to an existing engine

    new-engine <string:engine_name> <integer:port>

select-engine (seg) - Select an ecasound engine (advanced users only!)

    select-engine <string:engine_name>

Track commands

set-track-engine-group (steg) - Set the current track's engine affiliation

    set-track-engine-group <string:engine_name>

Bus commands

set-bus-engine-group (sbeg) - Set the current bus's engine affiliation

    set-bus-engine-group <string:engine_name>

select-submix (ssm) - Set the target for the trim command

    select-submix <string:submix_name>

trim-submix (trim tsm) - Control a submix fader


    # reduce vol of current track in in_ear_monitor by 3dB select-submix in_ear_monitor trim vol - 3

Effect commands

nickname-effect (nfx nick) - Add a nickname to the current effect (and create an alias)

    nickname-effect <lower_case_string:nickname>

    add-track guitar afx Plate nick reverb # current effect gets name "reverb1" mfx reverb1 1 0.05 # modify first reverb effect on current track mfx reverb 1 2 # works, because current track has one effect named "reverb" afx reverb # add another Plate effect, gets name "reverb2" rfx reverb # Error, multiple reverb effects are present on this # track. Please use a numerical suffix. mfx reverb2 1 3 # modify second reverb effect rfx reverb1 # removes reverb1 ifx reverb2 reverb # insert another reverb effect (reverb3) before reverb2 rfx reverb3 # remove reverb3 rfx reverb # removes reverb2, as it is the sole remain reverb effect

delete-nickname-definition (dnd) - Delete a nickname definition. Previously named effects keep their names.


    afx Plate # add Plate effect nick reverb # name it "reverb", and create a nickname for Plate dnd reverb # removes nickname definition afx reverb # error

remove-nickname (rnick) - Remove the "name" attribute of the current effect


    afx Plate nick reverb mfx reverb 1 3 rnick mfx reverb 1 3 # Error: effect named "reverb" not found on current track

list-nickname-definitions (lnd) - List defined nicknames


set-effect-name (sen) - Set a nickname only (don't creating an alias)

    set-effect-name <string:name>

set-effect-surname (ses) - Set an effect surname

    set-effect-surname <string:surname>

remove-effect-name (ren) - Remove current effect name


remove-effect-surname (res) - Remove current effect surname


Track commands

    select-track <string:track-name> | <integer:track-number>

Midi commands

set-tempo (tempo tp) - Set MIDI tempo (bpm)

    set-tempo <integer:tempo-setting>

General commands

set-sample-rate (ssr) - Configure the sample rate for the current project or report sample rate if no parameter

    set-sample-rate <integer:sample-rate>


Nama selects realtime or nonrealtime parameters based on the realtime_profile, ecasound_buffersize and ecasound_globals fields in .namarc. You can optionally specify the buffersizes as a multiple of the JACK period size. Note that for best realtime operation under JACK you will have to configure jackd appropriately as well.

The realtime and auto profiles are useful when using Nama/Ecasound for live fx processing or live monitoring.

The realtime profile sets a small buffersize and other low latency settings whenever a soundcard or JACK client is connected.

The nonrealtime profile uses a bigger buffer, providing extended margins for stable operation. It is suitable for post-processing, or for recording without live monitoring responsibilities.

The auto profile defaults to nonrealtime settings. It switches to realtime, low-latency settings when a track has a live input.


On any change in setup, the GUI display updates and show-tracks command is executed automatically showing what to expect the next time the engine is started.

You can use the chains command to verify the Ecasound chain setup. (The Ecasound command cs-save-as mysetup.ecs will additionally store all engine data, effects as well as routing.)

The dump command displays data for the current track. The dumpall command shows all state that would be saved.

This is the same output that is written to the State.yml file when you issue the save command.


No latency compensation across signal paths is provided at present. This feature is under development.


If you are using Nama with the NetECI interface (i.e. if Audio::Ecasound is not installed) you should block TCP port 2868 if your computer is exposed to the Internet.


The following commands, available on Unixlike systems with Perl installed, will pull in Nama and other Perl libraries required for text mode operation:

cpanm Audio::Nama -or- PERL_MM_USE_DEFAULT=1 cpan Audio::Nama

To use the GUI, you will need to install Tk:

cpanm Tk

You may want to install Audio::Ecasound if you prefer not to run Ecasound in server mode:

cpanm Audio::Ecasound

You can pull the source code as follows:

git clone git://

Consult the BUILD file for build instructions.


The Nama mailing list is a suitable forum for questions regarding Nama installation, usage, bugs, feature requests, etc.

For questions and discussion related to Ecasound


The modules that make up this application are the preprocessed output from several source files. Patches against these source files are preferred.


Joel Roth, <>


Alex Stone Brett McCoy Dubphil F. Silvain ++ Joy Bausch Julien Claassen ++ Kevin Utter Lars Bjørndal Philippe Schelté Philipp Überbacher Raphaël Mouneyres ++ Rusty Perez S. Massy ++


Copyright (c) 2009-2017 by Joel Roth.

This is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License, Version 3.

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