Avenue 4.5 and Arena 5
Clips are the real nuts and bolts of Resolume - without clips we wouldn't have any content to throw at the screens and speakers.
A clip can consist of a video part, an audio part or both. The video part could be a still image rather than a video file.
Clips can also contain audio or video Sources - plugins that generate content on the fly.
Before you can starting having fun with your content, you need to get it into Resolume. You can do this by dragging and dropping files from your operating system file browser but it is really much easier to do it using Resolume's built in browser.
You will find the browser over to the right of the display, in the Files tab.
Tip! If you need to search through a long list of files and you already know the name of the file or folder you're looking for, simply start typing the name of it while the browser window is in focus. The browser will then jump to the file or folder automatically.
Two really useful little buttons are next to the path. Use the A and B buttons to switch between two places in your filesystem.
Next to the A and B buttons is a toggle that enables you to show or hide thumbnail images for media files - really useful when you can't quite remember what you called that fantastic clip you made last night! Also you can double click a clip name to preview it in the preview window, to be really really sure that it is the fantastic clip you made last night.
Loading media into a clip is simply a case of dragging it over to a slot in the channel strips. You can drag an audio file and a video clip or image file onto the same slot to make a combined clip. If you do this, Resolume will automatically transpose the video to the length of the audio to make an audio-visual clip.
There are some tips in Appendix 2 of this manual that will help you prepare your content for Resolume so that you get the most out of your computer's processing power.
Once clips have been added to a deck, you can move them around by clicking and dragging the clip name below the thumbnail of each clip. If you drag a clip over an already added clip, they will swap places in the deck.
If you want to copy a clip, drag the clip to the new position and then hold down the Ctrl key (Alt on a Mac) as you release the mouse button. A copy of the clip will be created and the original will remain. You can also use the universal copy, cut and paste commands Ctrl-c, Ctrl-x and Ctrl-v (CMD-c, CMD-x and CMD-v on a Mac), allowing you to paste a clip into a different deck as well.
Tip! You can shift select multiple clips and copy/paste multiple clips at the same time!
When dragging an audio clip straight from the browser onto a video clip, they will merge to become an audio-visual clip. When dragging an audio clip to an empty slot, it will simply remain an audio file, and behave like any other clip.
To merge audio and video clips after both have been added to the deck, hold down shift while dragging the audio clip over the video clip.
To find the location of a clip on your computer, you can right click on the blue name handle of a clip, and use the option to reveal in Explorer/Finder.
If you have moved your source files around on your computer accidentally or on purpose (for instance when switching laptops, or reorganizing), Resolume will give an error message for which files are missing.
You can choose to reconnect the files, and point Resolume to the new location.
If more missing files are found in the same location, you have the option to fix just one, or all of the files.
Triggering a clip is as simple as clicking its thumbnail on the layer strips. You can also organize your content so that clips that fit well together are all in the same column (a column is a vertical row of clip slots). Then you can play them all at the same time by triggering the column, using the trigger found at the top of the column.
Tip! You can use the arrow keys on your keyboard to trigger clips as well. The left and right arrow will trigger the clips to the left and right of the currently playing clip respectively. Hold down shift and use the arrow keys to move around the deck, and press enter to trigger.
However, there are some options for what happens when a clip or column is triggered.
You can use the Beat Snap option to have clips wait until the next beat, bar, 2 bars and so on before it starts. This is particularly useful for audio-visual music clips.
In some music software, this feature is known as “Quantising”
You can set the Beat Snap option for the whole Composition through the Composition > Beat Snap menu options.
You can also set the Beat Snap option for an individual clip. Select the clip (by clicking its name below its thumbnail in the channel strips) and select the Clip > Beat Snap menu option. If you set the clip setting to ‘Composition determined’, it will use whatever the Composition setting is.
Normally, when you click a clip, it starts playing and carries on until you clear the layer or play another clip. Through the Trigger Style setting, you can also use Piano mode, where the layer is automatically cleared when you take your finger off the mouse button (or MIDI key or keyboard button if you are using mapped controls)
You can set the Trigger Style for the whole composition through the Composition > Trigger Style menu option.
You can set the Trigger Style for an individual clip by selecting it and then using the Clip > Trigger Style menu option.
The default thing that happens when you click a clip is that it plays on the layer it is held in. You can also set clips to play in the active layer (this approach will be familiar to Resolume 2.x users) or even to use the next available layer.
Like Beat Snap and Trigger Style, you can change this setting for the whole Composition (Composition > Clip Target) and for individual clips (Clip > Clip Target)
The Free Layer Clip Target mode is particularly fun when used with the Piano Trigger Style mode (see above).
You can then play 'chords' of clips with the keyboard or a MIDI device - each of them will be displayed for as long as it is selected. Obviously, you will need as many layers as you want to play simultaneous clips.
This option allows you to 'lock' a clip or entire layer, so that when you trigger another column, that particular clip will not get replaced and just keeps playing. The option can be found in both the Clip and Layer menus.
This is particularly useful when using a single clip as a background, or when you are using Resolume to record a video clip, and you want to keep playing a single audio track while you're mixing.
So, we know how to start clips playing but things would be a bit boring if we had no control over them after that. Fortunately, Resolume provides loads of ways to control and affect how clips behave.
The Transport section of the Clip tab is where we can change the speed and direction that clips play at.
The first thing we will look at in the Transport section is the timeline itself. We can manipulate this directly by grabbing the blue pointer that moves along it and sliding it around. This gives an effect similar to DJ scratching.
The smaller bar below the timeline is also useful. Grab and move the small blue pointers at its end to set the In and Out points of the clip. This is great for selecting parts of longer clips to use.
Tip! You can use the 'magnifying glass' icon in the top right to temporarily enlarge the transport panel, allowing you to place in and out points more accurately.
In the top right, you can see the current time of the clip. Clicking on this number will switch to show you the remaining time.
You have direct control over the Speed (pitch) of the clip. You simply use the Speed slider to speed the clip up or slow it down.
But there is another very powerful way to control the speed of a clip. You can switch to it by the drop down at the top right of the Transport section.
In BPM mode the clip uses the global BPM to control the speed of the clip.
Let's have a quick look at the BPM section, on the left of the display- under the layer strips.
Here you can set a BPM directly with the + and - buttons or by clicking the BPM value and typing a new one. You can also tap along to a tempo to set the BPM automatically.
The best way to use the Tap tempo function is to click the Tap button a few times to set the tempo and then click the Resync button on the first beat of a bar.
Tip! If you're having trouble finding the right BPM, keep your eye on the blue square moving clockwise around the slightly bigger grey square (in the right of the BPM section). If your BPM is on the money, it should hit the top left corner on every first beat. When you find it's drifting out of sync, and always arriving a little late, increase the BPM slightly by hitting the 'plus' button a few times, or hit the 'minus' when it's arriving early. Now hit resync again and see if it drifts again. Repeat till you get it right. This is how DJs beat match records as well, and after a little practice, you'll be able to dial in on the correct BPM very quickly.
Later on we will see how we can use MIDI clock to synchronise the tempo in Resolume with another program or piece of equipment.
So, you have Resolume running at the perfect BPM. Clips that have their Transport mode set to BPM will now play at a speed that synchronises them with that BPM.
In order for audio-visual clips to work right, you will need to set the number of beats that the clip spans in the Transport section. You can click the number and change it, use the + and - buttons or use the *2 and /2 buttons to quickly multiply or divide the value by 2.
By using the drop down to the left of the number of Beats, you can also tell Resolume how the clip should behave by setting the BPM directly (BPM) or asking Resolume to detect the number of beats (Auto).
The Transport section also provides some additional options:
Use the R button to jump to random frames in your video. When in timeline mode, the Speed slider now controls how often the clip will jump to a new frame. When in BPM sync mode, the clip will jump to a random beat and continue playing from there. This works for both audio and video clips, allowing you to make instant remixes!
The play once mode is useful for 'one shot' samples that you want to drop into the mix.
The play once and hold mode will hold the last frame of the clip when it's done playing, similar to how it worked in Resolume 2.
These buttons are only available in Timeline transport mode. Use them to decide what happens when a clip is triggered. The first (default) option plays the clip from the start. The second option starts the clip from wherever it was when it was last played.
When BPM transport mode is active on a clip, the BeatLoopr section is displayed. This enables you to have Resolume automatically loop sections of the clip. This is great for adding a bit more variety to rhythmic clips, creating weird vocal combinations or all kinds of other effects.
To use it, just select one of the options - the clip will loop over the relevant number of beats. When you are done, just click the selected option again or the Off button.
It's really that simple!
You can use the Cue Points section to quickly jump to any part of the clip that you like.
To set a cue point, click the smaller part to the left of one of the cue point buttons. The part you click will turn blue and the letter on the main button will turn white - this means the cue point is ready for use.
Now you can click the main button (or press the relevant keyboard key) to jump straight to the point where you set the cue point.
If you want to set cue points precisely, a good way to do it is to pause the clip, drag the Transport timeline marker to where you want the cue point and then set it.
You can reset an existing cue point in exactly the same way as setting it for the first time.
Tip! The Beatloopr (described above) will automatically turn off if you jump to a cue point. This way you can very easily build a climax using the Beatloopr and Cue Points. During a climax moment in the music, simply keep choosing shorter and shorter loops until the beat drops again, and then jump to the cue point you want to resume normal playback at. Reach for the lasers!
You can set the volume for this clip individually. This is useful for balancing the volume of clips that will play on a layer. Also you pan this clip individually.
Use the X button to delete the audio track. You can use this to remove the audio track from a video if you do not need it, or want to change it.
Tip! Drag a video clip from the browser over the blue video area. This allows you to replace the content, but keep any effects and parameter changes you had applied to the original!
Use this to resize the clip to the size of the current composition. This is great when your content isn't at the right size already (although it is more efficient to make content to the right size, we can't always live in a perfect world)
Clicking this multiple times will cycle through a few options available for scaling. 1. Scale the clip to the composition width, maintaining the aspect ratio of the clip. 2. Scale the clip to the composition height, maintaining the aspect ratio of the clip. 3. Scale the clip to the composition width and height, distorting the clip when necessary. 4. Keep the clip at its original size.
Use these toggles to select which colour channels from the clip will be used. By default, Red, Green and Blue are selected. The Alpha channel will only be selectable if your clip has an alpha channel in it.
Tip! By making smart use of all the different combinations that are possible for colors (R= Red, G= Green, B = Blue, R+G = Yellow, R+B = Purple, G+B = Cyan) you can very quickly 'colorize' your content to match the lighting in the venue.
The rest of the video properties for a clip are very similar to those for layers:
Mask - If you created a mask, it will show up here. You can use the B and X buttons to respectively bypass and eject it. Use the I button to invert it.
Video Effects - If you have applied any video effects, they will show up here.
Opacity - Set the opacity for the clip here. This will be multiplied with the layer's opacity value, so you can always have a certain clip at a lower value.
Width, Height - Set the width and height of the clip, this is useful for correcting the aspect ratio of content.
Scale - Scale the surface that the clip is drawn on in the output.
Position X, Position Y - Tweak the exact position of the clip, pixel by pixel.
Rotate X, Rotate Y, Rotate Z - Rotate the surface that the clip is drawn on.
Anchor X, Anchor Y, Anchor Z - Change the position of the surface that the clip is drawn on and also the point that the surface is rotated around if you use any of the Rotate parameters.
The clip properties can be adjusted for multiple clips at the same time. Shift-select the clips you want to change, and the Clip tab will now show 'Multiple clips'. Any changes you make there, will be applied on all the selected clips.
Beat snap setting, trigger style, transport mode, auto pilot and the other functions found in the Clip menu can be changed for multiple clips at the same time as well. Shift select the clips, and then change the function via the Clip menu or the right click drop down.