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Thread: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

  1. #1

    Cool Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Hey folks,

    If you're a windows user and/or a computer musician, and you own a Kasina, you might want to try my new plugin, called Lux Spectra.

    LuxSpectraScreen.png

    With it, you can design real-time, full-color light shows for Kasina using the fantastic new spectrastrobe format. Rather than giving you independent control of each of the colored LEDS, they're mapped to "color wheels", which makes it much easier to select and change colors in realtime.

    You'll need, of course, host software (a DAW) for running the plugin. I recommend Reaper, but any VST-compatible host/sequencer should do the trick, such as Cubase, Sonar, Ableton Live - even Fruity Loops. Oh yeah, and it's 32 bit, so 64 bit users might have to run their hosts in 32 bit mode.

    If you don't have a DAW, but still want to try it out, you can run Lux Spectra with a little free piece of software called Savihost, which lets you run plugins as standalone applications. Directions for using it are on the page, but if you need help, message me or post a question in my forums section and I'll walk you through it.

    Lemme know what you think.

    -Steve
    Veritas Lux Mea

  2. #2

    Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Wow this looks promising I'm very curious.
    Thank You so much Steve
    Cheers
    Esthy

  3. #3

    Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Hi Steve
    I installed Reaper .Now can you tell me how I get your plugin into the program.
    Sorry I^m a technical Dummy.And except MindWorkstation I have no experience at all
    with these Programs but I really am curious to try out your plugin.
    (When I just rightklick your plugin and go to open with reaper it looks like this..see screenshot)
    Cheers Esthy
    Attached Images Attached Images

  4. #4

    Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Congratulations on installing Reaper. I think it's the best out there, and I love their pricing, user community, and overall ethic.

    That said, it's a tough program to get into, especially for someone who has never used a digital audio workstation. Let's get you started anyway.

    Before loading the plugin, set up your audio interface. You can use Kasina as a USB interface. With your Kasina plugged in, go to Reaper preferences. Under Audio Devices, select your Kasina.

    Below are the steps to load Lux Spectra (or any other VST instrument Plugins)

    1) First, you need a place to store all your VST plugins. Most users make a folder called "VST Plugins" and put it in the "Program Files" folder on the C drive. Please create that folder if it's not already there.

    2) Move the Lux Spectra folder to the VST plugins folder you just made.

    3) Tell Reaper where your VST plugins reside. In Reaper Preferences, select Plugins, then VST from the list on the left. On the main part of the window, type in the path to your VST Plugins folder. Click OK.

    4) Back in the main Reaper window, under the "Track" menu, select "Insert Instrument on new track". A list of available plugins will pop up. Under "VST", you should find lux spectra. Double click on it, and Spectra will load on a new track, ready to go. If this doesn't work, you might need Reaper to scan for new plugins. The easiest way is to just exit, restart the program and repeat step 4.

    This should be enough to get you started. If not, then let me know where you're stuck and I'll see if I can help move you forward.

    Recording your knob movements and programming the parameters to change over time will require some more in-depth study, but when you're ready for it, you'll want to read the part of the reaper manual on "automation". There are also a lot of tutorial videos on youtube, so please don't let Reaper's complexity turn you off. With a little elbow grease, you'll be rewarded.

    -Steve
    Veritas Lux Mea

  5. #5

    Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Thank you very much for your help Steve.It worked your plugin is on.
    Well using it , is another story ,but I will try wish me luck!
    Just one more question.Is it possible to automatic syncronize the lights with an audiofile with your plugin
    or will the LightOrgan from CraigT be the better choice for this purpose?
    Cheers
    Esthy

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Hi Esthy,

    Lux is a more capable and polished product than TKE, KLO or KBM - Steve does awesome work!

    From my collection you would be wanting TKE - it is the only one that includes envelope following. The UI for TKE is the best approximation of "simple" that I could come up with that adequately fulfilled the task of adding Synchromuse or AudioStrobe to existing content of for inclusion in new material created in MuLab. KLO is a very simple MIDI to light controller. KBM is a complex beat generator, beats sufficiently complex that the output from KBM could easily be used as a session with nothing else added.

    Lux also runs just fine in MuLab 32-bit. A significant plus for Lux is that it doesn't require MuLab - it will run in pretty much any DAW. To do the same, my MuLab MUX presets require the purchasable MUX program that encapsulates MuLab Mux presets in a VST wrapper for use in any DAW.

    Cheers,
    Craig

  7. #7

    Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Esthy,

    Craig's TKE is quite a different beast. The "envelope following" that Craig refers to means that TKE listens to the incoming audio and analyzes the components (bass, mids & treble), then sets the brightness of the lights according to the volume of those audio components. For instance, louder bass = brighter blue, or louder highs = brighter greens and so on. As far as I know, it does not synchronize the flashing rate per se. If, however, the music has a strong rhythmic element, then of course the lights would follow that rhythm.

    Spectra does not listen to incoming audio at all. (I may add that function later, though, if there is significant interest.) Instead, it listens to the tempo clock in Reaper, or Ableton, or whatever DAW you're using. Spectra has it's own clock which synchronizes to the DAW's tempo. Then, other modules can synchronize to the Master clock, at various fractions and multiples.

    It was designed not so much for adding lights to pre-made music, but for composing lights and tempo-based music together. So if I write some music in reaper that follows a certain tempo, I can run Spectra as a plugin within that project, and it will sync automatically with my music.

    To see how the synchronization works:
    * Try setting Spectra's "Clock" module to 1/4. That means it will flash on every quarter note beat of the DAW's tempo.
    * Now set the LEDs "Rate Sync" to "Master". This means they will follow whatever the Clock module's rate is. If reaper's tempo is 120 Beats Per Minute (BPM), that's 120 quarter notes every minute. You'll see the lights flash once for every click of the metronome.
    * Now, change the tempo in reaper, and you'll see that the LEDs flash rate slows down or speeds up accordingly. Try setting the clock to 1/8, and you'll see the lights flash twice for every click of the metronome, and so on.

    OK... If you really want to synchronize spectra with a piece of already made music - it CAN be done in reaper, but you would have to adjust Reaper's tempo to precisely match your music. I've tried it before, and it can be a real pain unless the music has a very VERY steady beat.

    Good luck! I hope you get some use out of it.

    Steve
    Veritas Lux Mea

  8. #8

    Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Craig,

    Thanks for the compliment, but don't be so self-effacing. Your MUX plugins rock, too! Seriously, you can do anything with them. I like to think that you and I are just designing tools for different workflows.

    -Steve
    Veritas Lux Mea

  9. Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Hi Steve - I assume with the new plug in that the colour wheels and rate knobs etc are all able to be linked to real knobs on Midi hardware like the original LUX.

    The colour wheel in Lux is however a simplified version of Kasina control as it is not possible to have differnt rates flashing on different colours in the same eye as you can with normal audiostrobe.

    Mark

  10. #10

    Default Re: Lux Spectra - VST Spectrastrobe Lightshow Synthesizer for Kasina

    Mark,

    Yes, you're right on all counts. Spectra's parameters can be linked to hardware MIDI controllers. Also, the color wheel does limit the possibilities for some flash/color/panning combinations.

    I made that design decision because in my first prototypes, I found that having totally independent control over each LED was a real pain to program. It sounds cool to have absolute control, but I found that dialing in a particular color with 3 separate knobs was very tough. Additionally, when I dialed in the RGB knobs to intermediate values, I often didn't even like the colors. I realized that I would probably never use grey, beige, or brown light. All possible color combinations sounds cooler than it looks, in my opinion. Ultimately, I felt that the trade-off between complete control over ever parameter and ease of use was worth it.

    That said, if you want to have different rates flashing on different colors in the same eye, you could load up multiple instances. And as I think about that, though, I realize I never included an option to turn off the spectrastrobe reference signal to allow for just such a thing. Ha. OK, well I'll recompile a new version this weekend that has that feature added.

    -Steve
    Veritas Lux Mea

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