Thursday, May 18, 2017

A City and Night - visualization progress #1

Development continues.  I realize it's been awhile.  Life just seems to get busy.  So here is a line-up of buildings I've got.  I figured I would go with all the letters of the alphabet so there are 26 different buildings here!  Check them out.

Building Z is obviously the biggest and coolest one while building A is the shortest and smallest.  The idea will be to procedurally increase building type based on amplitude analysis for different frequency ranges.  I'm also exploring the possibility of higher frequencies having more of a spire look to them while lower frequencies will be thicker/heavier shaped buildings.  Height would still be tied to amplitude.

Getting all these buildings built was the easy part.  The next stage will be tracking amplitude as it accumulates across various frequencies.  My previous audio analysis system was somewhat limited. I had 8 bands of frequencies to pull from but I wanted more flexibility. The frequency ranges were limited to 8 distinct bands which were hard-coded.

For example, one band went from 20Hz to 120Hz.  The next band might have been from 150Hz to 350Hz. You can see the original 8 bands in blue here:

The new system I've got will allow almost unlimited flexibility with which frequency bins I collect. There are a great series of tutorials on the web about FFT analysis for Max/MSP.  I highly recommend checking them out below.

Using the help of the work above, I've constructed a new equalizer with extremely fine controls over which frequencies will be analyzed.  Check out the image below:
The light blue and gray curves at the top control which frequency ranges will be analyzed.  You can see the result in the lower spectrograms.  The one on the left is the complete spectrum while the one on the right is a subset based on the control curves.  This will allow finite tuning of each audio channel to better match specific instruments, voices or whatever range is required.

Next steps will be to replicate this across multiple channels and pipe all that revised data over to Unity3D.  I still need to tweak some envelop following and data smoothing functions to best capture the music and solidify a cleaner user interface.  More updates in the future with some city animations too!

1 comment:

  1. I won't pretend to understand any of that but it sounds amazing! Your previous work has been so impressive. I look forward to seeing the latest incarnation put to the test.


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