Parameter Animation

You have seen how a wide variety of things can be controlled in Resolume by moving parameter sliders, from the volume of the composition to an individual setting on an effect. You can create amazingly dynamic looks just by moving a few sliders.

The good news is you don't need to give yourself a repetitive strain injury to achieve this. Instead, you can set parameters to animate by themselves. 

To access these options, click the little grey cogwheel next to the parameter name. A menu will appear.

The options in the menu will be slightly different depending on whether the parameter you are working with is for a clip, a layer, a group or the composition. However, they all work in much the same way.

The Dashboard and Envelope get the super special treatment and have their own page.


The Timeline option presents you with an interface similar to the timeline you have for videos. 

You can play forwards, backwards, control the speed and duration, set in & out points and you have all the options for looping, pinp-ponging, playing random frames or one-shotting. 

Tip! If you need a refresher on all of this, check out the clip transport section.

Duration Changes with In and Out Points

On parameters, duration and in & out points have a special relationship. 

By default, when you move the in & out points, the duration will update itself accordingly. 

However, after setting the duration directly, Resolume will assume you really really want that animation to last that long. So it will no longer update the duration when you adjust the in & out points.

Should this behavior cramp your style, you can always toggle it via the animation menu. The option you are looking for is appropriately titled "Duration Changes with In & Out Points" and can be found under Animation Settings.

Really? "Duration Changes with In & Out Points"?  What a mouthful! Is that really the best name you could come up with?

Shut up. You're just a voice in my head and my doctor says I shouldn't listen to you.

BPM Sync

Like Timeline, BPM Sync is like the BPM Sync mode on videos. 

It works pretty much the same as the timeline mode. The only real difference is that the time is expressed in beats rather than seconds.

There is one subtle difference though. In BPM Sync mode, changing the in & out points by default won't update the duration in beats. 

Again, if that is not what you want, this behavior can be toggled via the Animation Settings.


The dashboard is so special, it's got its own little section in the manual.

Clip Position

This option is available on clips only. 

It lets you sync a parameter to the playhead of the clip. The parameter will run exactly in time with the clip. You can scrub, skip, change speed, change direction or even beatloop the clip. The parameter will follow everything.

Audio Analysis

Audio analysis enables you to drive parameters directly from the music to make your visuals dance.

If you are really brave you could also use Audio Analysis to drive audio parameters. Who knows what would happen?

To activate audio analysis, select one of the FFT options in the control drop-down menu for a parameter:

External FFT 

Use the audio device specified in the audio preferences to drive the parameter. This is the one to use if you want to use a feed from a DJ or band or if you have an external microphone.

You have to select a source if you want to use the external option. This can be done via the audio tab of the preferences. First choose which Audio Input device you want to use, then select which channel from the list of its available channels.

I'm going to say that again. Not because I don't think you heard me. But because I just spent 2 minutes not knowing why it wasn't working myself.

You have to first choose an audio input device in the top right, and then choose which channels you want to use for external audio FFT in the bottom left.

So first go here:

Then go here:

It may feel weird to set this in two places, but it makes sense because FFT is not the only function an audio input is used for. For instance, on Arena you can also use it for SMPTE input. But yeah, we could at least put them a bit closer together. Anyway, moving on.

Composition FFT

With this option, whatever audio is playing in the composition will be used to drive the parameter. This option is available on all parameters.

Clip/Layer/Group FFT

With these options, whatever audio is playing in the clip, layer or group will be used to drive the parameter. Each option is available in its corresponding panel. So Clip FFT is only available on clip parameters, Layer FFT on layer parameters etc etc.

Using FFT

Once you've selected which input to use, the parameter display will now change to display the Audio Analysis options. 

The first thing you should do is click the small grey arrow to display the full options. 

You can now use the L, M and H buttons to select the Low, Middle or High end frequencies to use to drive the parameter. You can take even finer control of the frequencies used by adjusting the in and out points below the audio spectrum display.

Use the Gain control to boost the signal until it is having the right amount of effect on the parameter. The Fall control sets how quickly the value falls back from a peak.

Tip! There's also a master gain in the audio tab of the preferences as well as in the main interface. Toggle it via View > Show Audio Gain, and it becomes visible on the center toolbar.

The buttons on the left enable us to drive the parameter directly from low to high (>), high to low (<) or to have the audio signal drive the speed the parameter moves at in either direction (- and +).

Crossfader Phase

When animating parameters in the Composition, Layer or Group panels you can choose the Crossfader Phase as the driving force for your animation. This option enables the Crossfader as a 0% to 100% slider.

Generally speaking you want to add an envelope (explained below) to the animation so you can animate parameters on fading the Crossfader from A to B.


Envelopes can be applied on all animations. This is super powerful and explained in greater detail in the section on Envelopes.

Animate Everything!

Thus far, we've only talked about animating sliders. But you can animate all the parameters. Toggles, events, dropdowns, colors, you name it.

Toggles and Events

These behave pretty much the same. After enabling animation via the cog wheel, the same timeline will appear as for sliders. 

There is a subtle difference that the color slightly changes to indicate where the switch will be flipped. When applying an envelope to the animation, envelope points will also snap to this value.

Tip! The Bypass button on effects can also be animated! Right click to reveal its animation menu!


After enabling animation for a dropdown, each choice will appear on the timeline in alternating grey tones.

The fun really starts when applying an envelope. Here you could program an animation that switches continuously between two or three options, ignoring the others. This is a lot of fun on dropdown like the Type parameter on the Shaper effect.

Again, the envelope points will snap to each choice.

Color Palettes

This is where Pandora's box really opens.

When enabling animation for a palette, the timeline will cycle through each color. Using the envelope you can then further refine the selection and order. Bump that cyan to orange on the beat!

Color Interpolation

Want to go completely color crazy? Set the palette to FFT input, enable Color Interpolation for that bad boy in the Animation Settings and get ready to puke rainbows like the magnificent unicorn you are!


"Hey Resolume! What's this Basic option when I animate a bypass or dropdown? A weird slider appears and I don't like weird things!"

Basic mode is essentially the same as for regular sliders. Except instead of controlling the slider value directly, you use the slider to control the 'phase' of the toggle or the dropdown. So at values lower than 0.5, the toggle will be off, at values higher than 0.5, the toggle will be on. Same goes for dropdowns, except with more steps.

If that sounds very technical and nerdy, it's because it is. This behavior is not really new. If you wanted, you have always been able to control a button with for instance a MIDI fader. This is the same thing. We just made it explicit so everything works exactly the same and there's no difference between controlling Resolume via MIDI, OSC or the mouse. This makes you happy and keeps our programmers sane.

Parameter Start Settings

Parameter start settings is a set of advanced features, giving you more control over your animations. It allows you to manually start the animation of a parameter. This eliminates the need for effect layers and allows you to work from the composition panel instead.

Start Settings Animation

In essence this dictates when the parameter starts running. By default an animated parameter starts running as soon as the composition is loaded. But now you can change this condition to starting when a clip or column is triggered. Alternatively you can disable all conditions and start animations manually so you can start button mashing those effects like you’re playing Tekken against your older siblings.

The default setting for a parameter in the composition tab is composition load, this means the effect parameter starts animating when the composition is loaded from disk. But you can change this to a clip trigger or column trigger if you like. Multiple trigger conditions can be used at the same time.

The default setting for a parameter in the layer tab is composition load and clip trigger. This means the parameter starts animating upon the composition being loaded from disk and restarts when a clip in that layer is triggered.

The default setting for a parameter in the clip tab is clip trigger. It is not possible to use composition load or column trigger on a clip.

Start Settings BPM Sync

When animating a parameter with BPM Sync you can disable BPM Phase Lock in the Start Settings. What this does is ‘free’ the parameter from the Master BPM. The parameter is still in sync with the BPM, but no longer in phase with the BPM.

For example: the parameter can be on its second beat while the master BPM is on its fourth beat.

This can be used to start the animation parameters of the BPM synced clip at the same time as starting the clip. Keep in mind that you actually have to be on time yourself now since the parameter is no longer in phase with the master BPM.

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