This Tutorial will give you a glimpse into the audio-reactive possibilities of Quartz Composer patches in VDMX.
Create a simple kaleidoscope effect in Quartz Composer
If you donâ€™t have Quartz Composer, this tutorial can help you get set up.
- Open Quartz Composer and create a Basic Composition
- Drag an image or video file into the composition
- Drag in a Billboard patch from the Patch Library.
In the Patch Inspector adjust the Width value to 2 (making it full width in the Quartz Composer coordinate system)
Change the Pixel Aligned value to 1 to ensure pixel aligned output.
- Delete the Layer patch connected to the image input and drag in a Kaleidoscope patch from the Patch Library.
Connect the image output to the Kaleidoscope image input and the Kaleidoscope image output to the Billboard image input.
In the Viewer you will see the effect applied.
Adjust the patch to take video input from VDMX
Quartz Composer allows you to publish inputs so they can receive values or data from other software. In this case we want to control the kaleidoscope count and angle and apply the effect to a video clip from VDMX. In order to do that we will insert input splitters for each of the effect values and will publish their inputs.
- Right-click on the Kaleidoscope patch and select â€œInsert Input Splitter > Angleâ€
- Select the input splitter â€œAngleâ€ and hitÂ âŒ˜+I to open the patch inspector.Â
Under â€œSettingsâ€ select Type: â€œNumberâ€ and set the minimal and maximal values to -90 and 90 respectively.
- Right-click on the input splitter input and select â€œPublish Inputs > Inputâ€
Rename the input to â€œAngle”
Published inputs appear green.
- Repeat the same procedure for the â€œcountâ€ and â€œimageâ€ values
- Set the â€œcountâ€ settings to â€œNumberâ€ with minimal and maximal values of 6 and 40
- Set the â€œimageâ€ settings to â€œImageâ€
- Delete the original image input we dragged in.
- Save your composition as a patch â€œKaleidoscope patch.qtz”.
Screen recording of the previous stepsÂ
KaleidoscopeTutorial 01 QuartzComposer from Tobias Treppmann on Vimeo.
Add the patch to VDMXâ€™s Effects Library
- In FinderÂ locate the file you just saved and copy it to the clipboard.
- Hit â‡§âŒ˜G to open the â€œGo To Folderâ€ dialog and navigate to “~/Library/Application Support/VDMX/qcFX/â€œ
- Paste the file into the qcFX folder.
Load the patch into VDMX
- Start VDMX and play a video clip.Â
- In the Workspace Inspector under â€œLayersâ€ select â€œLayer 1â€ and under â€œLayer 1 Compositionâ€ set the Sizing Mode to â€œFillâ€.
- Under Layer FXÂ select â€œLoad Asset > Misc. QC >Â Kaleidoscope patch.qtzâ€.
- See the effect applied and notice the Count and Angle controls.
Screen Recording of the previous steps
KaleidoscopeTutorial 03 VDMX setup from Tobias Treppmann on Vimeo.
Let the music play
- create a second layer in VDMX and call it â€œAudioâ€
- Add a Media BinÂ âŒ˜B, assign it to theÂ â€œAudioâ€Â layer and play the audio file
- In the Workspace Inspectorâ€™s Â â€œPluginsâ€ tab click the â€œ+â€ button and select â€œAudio Analysisâ€
- Click the Recycling Icon to activate the audio input.
Hook up the Audio Analysis to our effects
- Set the Filter 2 in the Audio Analysis plugin to a spot where it getâ€™s some input, but not the main action or rhythm.Â
- Right-click on the AngleÂ control under Layer 1 FX and select â€œUse Data Source > Audio Analysis 1 > Filter 2″
- Then adjust the input range to something that makes for a gentle effect.
- Letâ€™s support this effect by creating a continuous visual rhythm by moving Filter 3Â in the Audio Analysis plugin to a spot where it captures the beat of the song.Â
- Then assign â€œAudio Analysis 1 > Filter 3â€ as a Data Source for the Width and Height of Layer 1.
- Limit both ranges to 1.0 – 1.50 or something that feels good.Â
Screen Recording (with Audio) of the previous steps and the final result
KaleidoscopeTutorial 04 VDMX AudioAnalysis from Tobias Treppmann on Vimeo.