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sallz0r
06-28-2013, 09:46 PM
Hi all,

3.0.6 is released! You can grab it here (http://www.vixenlights.com/downloads/vixen-3-downloads/).

The big things in this release are a new display preview, and the addition of Nutcracker effects! A big thanks to Derek for implementing that, he's done a great deal of work in the past few weeks/months getting those going.

There's also a bunch of bugfixes and speed improvements in there as well.

Let us know what you think!

Cheers,
Michael

RichF
06-28-2013, 10:09 PM
thank you to the team for the new release. now that I understand the features I am doing better with vixen 3.x

what would the possibilities of the dev team doing a learning session much like is done for nutcracker. I know some of you of the team are in other time zones from me but I know I have found the nutcracker learning sessions very helpful.

budude
06-28-2013, 10:14 PM
Is there a "State of Vixen 3" kind of thing - perhaps listing major working features, stuff not there yet or in the works? Basically for folks still deciding which way to go (myself included) for this year and whether it's worth it try it, etc.

dsmjuggalo
06-28-2013, 10:37 PM
Been playing with it since last night. Absolutely love how easy it is to implement nutcracker effects and to be able to stretch them to make them shorter or longer. GREAT work guys.

jchuchla
06-28-2013, 10:44 PM
I was actually thinking of doing an online live webinar. I guess we have at least one taker so far.
If we did one, what would be the key points you'd want to see?


--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Wayne J
06-28-2013, 10:53 PM
I was actually thinking of doing an online live webinar. I guess we have at least one taker so far.
If we did one, what would be the key points you'd want to see?


--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

That would be a great idea. I can say, I have heard from several people they would like some instruction on Vixen 3.

jchuchla
06-28-2013, 11:07 PM
Regarding our roadmap, I don't want to speak for the whole team just yet. However I can say that there's some major performance improvements in the works. That's a big part of the current work. Also in the works are some big user interface improvements.

To answer in practical terms, vixen 3 is usable today for certain applications.

Everything basically works now. (yeah there's a few bugs here and there) some things aren't as obvious as they need to be so the learning curve may be steep. That being said however. I'm not writing the software myself and I still find it easier to self learn than LSP or HLS (no knock on those programs at all but that's why I joined this team, it just fits my style)

If you an on having high channel counts (maybe 5000 or more) check with us to find out where your problems might be.

There's a major overhaul of the controllers and patching section planned in the near term. You can get it done with the current interface but its confusing and very tedious. You can set up your elements now and start sequencing. You can hold off on the controllers and patching part until it gets closer to show season. You dont need to do that anyhow until you want to blink real lights. If you want to set up a small number of controller channels for testing purposes, you can certainly do that now. (I am doing that myself) We hope to have a better interface to make that part much smoother for full size shows.

Be aware that there's still a lot of polish going into the user interface. So be prepared to learn and relearn things as we keep making it better.

So. I'm going to try to come up with a more detailed feature roadmap to post here. But hopefully this is a start.


--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Xenia
06-28-2013, 11:33 PM
Jon,

I posted this on the development blog but Gigogig is always looking for presenters for his online mini-conferences on Friday nights and would probably be happy to host an occaissional demo of Vixen 3. If you wanted to do a weekly session, he could probably set you up like he has for Sean. Probably worth a PM to him.

jchuchla
06-28-2013, 11:36 PM
I haven't yet joined one of his online minis. I never seem to be home at the time. But I could probably make it a point to do one every so often. That's probably a good place to start. I don't have the time to do a weekly. But maybe monthly. Ill have to hit him up on it.


--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

dmcole
06-29-2013, 06:24 PM
Is there a "State of Vixen 3" kind of thing - perhaps listing major working features, stuff not there yet or in the works? Basically for folks still deciding which way to go (myself included) for this year and whether it's worth it try it, etc.


Regarding our roadmap, I don't want to speak for the whole team just yet. However I can say that there's some major performance improvements in the works.

Jon:

I appreciate your explanation, but I don't think it addresses Budude's basic concern.

What I think he was driving at (and what I certainly am interested in) is this: If I were to decide today to use V3 for my Christmas 2013 show, what would be the limitations?

You addressed some in regards to the user interface, which would require relearning. But would there be a downside from the perspective of the amount of work in sequencing? Is there something on the road ahead that would cause me to lose any work I might do in the next couple of weeks?

And, can I import my V2.5 files (probably few people have that requirement; they might be interesting in bringing in V2.1 files, though).

Thx.

\dmc

Santacarl
06-30-2013, 11:12 AM
I'm not into the development world....just a user.

From my/user perspective I gave up trying to use V3 for 1 main reason and it wasn't a setup issue like "controllers and patching" as I can live with that tedious aspect since I basically only have to do that one time.

The reason I threw up my hands in total frustration was the inability to easily find a beat to center my lights with. I had posted on this frustration in an earlier thread and was hoping this issue would be moved up in importance. The reason I say all this is because when you begin sequencing, a function repeated on a rather frequent basis, it is more than tedious to find a consistent/steady beat in the music.... This is where I spend the majority of my time......and it now takes me longer with V3 than it did with V2.5 to sequence despite the easier application of effects.....the music/beat thing just takes FOREVER....

This is not intended as a criticism per se.....because I truly appreciate the effort and time being put in..... It is just feedback from an average user as to how the software is perceived (well at least the last time I tried to use it....3.0.4 if memory serves).

I would REALLY like to use V3.....with it's potential and the addition of the Nutcracker effects just temps me all the more (maybe I should say frustrates me) but I can't see it until the music/beat usage becomes more user friendly......

budude
06-30-2013, 11:39 AM
Jon:

I appreciate your explanation, but I don't think it addresses Budude's basic concern.

What I think he was driving at (and what I certainly am interested in) is this: If I were to decide today to use V3 for my Christmas 2013 show, what would be the limitations?

You addressed some in regards to the user interface, which would require relearning. But would there be a downside from the perspective of the amount of work in sequencing? Is there something on the road ahead that would cause me to lose any work I might do in the next couple of weeks?

And, can I import my V2.5 files (probably few people have that requirement; they might be interesting in bringing in V2.1 files, though).

Thx.

\dmc

Exactly right! This is definitely the time where folks have to start making the hard decision on which sequencer to go with if they haven't already. For me it's either sticking with LOR S3 or possibly HLS. Vixen 2 is definitely out forever but for the third horse in the race it's looking like Vixen 3 or Vixen+ - I like the direction both are going but just looking for some concise feedback on where they are at and if I want to spend time on them or not. The easiest thing for me is to stay with LOR but I'm still open!

dsmjuggalo
06-30-2013, 11:47 AM
I noticed while playing around where you tap to make marks that you can generate marks for different music notes and frequencies but I have absolutely no clue how to use it. Any chance of a quick how to? I think this might help with what Carl is talking about as well.

derekbackus
06-30-2013, 11:58 AM
There is work being done on the beat manager. I agree, it is not the simplest thing to use, but it does work given enough patience. Also, we'll be working on documentation that explains the use so that it makes more sense. gizmohd has been playing with finding different frequencies, etc. that will help with automatic beat detection. I'm not sure exactly where he is with that, though.

I do feel for you... I used LOR last year, and all I did was load a song, click on something that I remember as "find the beat" and it did... Nothing could have been easier. I read about xLights using the Audacity beat track (or something like that). I've been thinking about looking at that code to import beat marks into Vixen, but haven't had time yet.

Santacarl
06-30-2013, 12:21 PM
"Patience" is the operative word..... and I have played with it enough to make it work but the time to do so was a showstopper for me. I have pretty good tolerance in that regard but I find the beat issue beyond patience...it's maddening..... Even in Vixen 2.x you could see the cells and once you found the beat pattern you knew that every "x" number of cells the next beat would be there......enabling you to easily place events to sync music/lights.... With V3 you have to place things and drag them about.....potentially for every beat...... A 2 minute song....with a tempo of 80 beats per minute equals 160 potential adjustment points....... For me that is a user interface that is a key component of my sequencing......

I'll shut up now as I do not want to beat a dead horse....just wanted to make sure I had clearly defined the frustration experienced after using the software.....

jchuchla
06-30-2013, 12:52 PM
There is the tap beat function. Though its a bit awkward to use at the moment. That's exactly one of the usability things we're working on.
I don't sequence to a beat per-se but rather to 'movements' in a song. So to do that I find myself listening to and watching the waveform. So the current implementation works ok for this style of sequencing. (Plus I'm an audio engineer, so waveforms come naturally to me)


--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

RichF
06-30-2013, 01:13 PM
Is there a way to program a key such as the space bar to past the last item used.

Kind of like the on off feature in Vixen 2

jchuchla
06-30-2013, 02:28 PM
Space bar is already taken. But copy and paste works. Select and Copy(ctrl-c) the effect you want. Then click where you want it to go and paste(ctrl-v)



--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Santacarl
06-30-2013, 02:52 PM
That works if you are playing the "horseshoe" approach as in it will get you fairly close..... I want to be able to be precise so that when my toe tap hits the floor I want blinky flashy to occur.....without having to adjust....drag.....listen.....readjust....drag again.....several times before I get it nailed down.... Right now my blinky flashy tends to sometimes be just a tad before the beat.....other times a tad after the beat.......not tight and on the beat....to me that gives a quazi synchronized feel to the sequence....... I've tried using waveforms as well but frankly that also seems a bit squishy resulting in that same 'horseshoe' result....maybe I'm just not visual enough to see where the spikes that represent the precise beat are located......I guess the old band director in me needs that precise beat point.....otherwise I feel all 'wobbly' in my tempo.... :blink:

ctmal
06-30-2013, 05:32 PM
I'm not into the development world....just a user.

From my/user perspective I gave up trying to use V3 for 1 main reason and it wasn't a setup issue like "controllers and patching" as I can live with that tedious aspect since I basically only have to do that one time.

The reason I threw up my hands in total frustration was the inability to easily find a beat to center my lights with. I had posted on this frustration in an earlier thread and was hoping this issue would be moved up in importance. The reason I say all this is because when you begin sequencing, a function repeated on a rather frequent basis, it is more than tedious to find a consistent/steady beat in the music.... This is where I spend the majority of my time......and it now takes me longer with V3 than it did with V2.5 to sequence despite the easier application of effects.....the music/beat thing just takes FOREVER....

This is not intended as a criticism per se.....because I truly appreciate the effort and time being put in..... It is just feedback from an average user as to how the software is perceived (well at least the last time I tried to use it....3.0.4 if memory serves).

I would REALLY like to use V3.....with it's potential and the addition of the Nutcracker effects just temps me all the more (maybe I should say frustrates me) but I can't see it until the music/beat usage becomes more user friendly......

The Mark Manager has had quite a few updates since then. You should be able to get more accurate marks with the updates.

Santacarl
06-30-2013, 05:45 PM
The Mark Manager has had quite a few updates since then. You should be able to get more accurate marks with the updates.

That is very good to hear..... Encouraging. Thanks for the update...

Santacarl
06-30-2013, 08:55 PM
I also use a lot of wireframes.....from days gone by. While I'm stepping into Pixels...I want to keep that cast of characters.... When you sequence for them and you are trying to lip sync a 'singing' wireframe with the music you need more than a little control. In Vixen 2.5 I often slow the music to 1/4 speed and place a word between beats....pretty precise stuff that..... That why 'close' is so inadequate....

ctmal
06-30-2013, 09:01 PM
That is very good to hear..... Encouraging. Thanks for the update...

Did you try(or could you try) the Mark Manager in 3.0.6? I'd be curious to hear your results...probably better to put in another thread.

Santacarl
06-30-2013, 11:25 PM
Did you try(or could you try) the Mark Manager in 3.0.6? I'd be curious to hear your results...probably better to put in another thread.

I haven't yet.....I will try to do so later this week.... Need to free up a little time to play with it....

jpb
07-01-2013, 07:37 AM
Did you try(or could you try) the Mark Manager in 3.0.6? I'd be curious to hear your results...probably better to put in another thread.

I would love to be able to drag a mark in the sequencing window. I am very bad at tapping the beat and quite often I can see on the waveform where I should have been but missed. It would be nice to be able to correct it there and then rather than going back into the Mark Manager.

Jon

corytcline
07-15-2013, 07:22 AM
I would love to be able to drag a mark in the sequencing window. I am very bad at tapping the beat and quite often I can see on the waveform where I should have been but missed. It would be nice to be able to correct it there and then rather than going back into the Mark Manager.

Jon
Ill second that!

Traneman
07-15-2013, 02:27 PM
Jon:

I appreciate your explanation, but I don't think it addresses Budude's basic concern.

What I think he was driving at (and what I certainly am interested in) is this: If I were to decide today to use V3 for my Christmas 2013 show, what would be the limitations?

You addressed some in regards to the user interface, which would require relearning. But would there be a downside from the perspective of the amount of work in sequencing? Is there something on the road ahead that would cause me to lose any work I might do in the next couple of weeks?

And, can I import my V2.5 files (probably few people have that requirement; they might be interesting in bringing in V2.1 files, though).

Thx.

\dmc

I still dont see an answere on this, I too would love to use v3 but worried I might end up in a pinch. If its not going to be stable for a 2013 show thats ok, I have no problem in waiting another year. Could someone just give a yes or no answer.

Also I want to thank everyone for all the work that is going into v3.

jchuchla
07-15-2013, 06:01 PM
I'm not sure we understand what information you need to decide if you can use it. If you ask about a specific feature we'll be better able to answer.

Let me remind everyone that vixen is a hobbyist effort. The guys who are working on it are adding and perfecting the features they want to make vixen 3 do what they need it to do. It's not being directly patterned off any other software. Not even vixen 2. There may be a feature you're looking for from another program that we aren't even aware of. Another thing to note is that the team working on vixen 3 is completely different now than previous versions. While KC started and laid the groundwork for the current vixen 3 system, he's no longer active on the team. I only say all of this to make the point that we think we've got a good working program that does what we want it to do, but if you want something else, speak up.

We've already said a few times that the program does work right now and many of us will be using it this year. So if you have different criteria for making that decision, you'll need to let us know what you're looking for.



--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

budude
07-15-2013, 06:39 PM
If I can interject here - and to be clear - everyone understands it's a volunteer effort - no one is ungrateful, etc - - - we went through all that painful back and forth for the last Vixen 3 release cycle - *nobody* wants to go through that again. Anyway, I'm not trying to be a jerk or anything but it's just been my casual observation while reading the threads that many questions about things pertaining to V3 often result in an answer like "we are looking at that for the next/upcoming release - thanks for the input" or "yes we know about that and are looking for a solution". Again - no rant implied but I personally don't get a sense that it's ready for prime time and that goes back to a post I made a while back concerning the state of V3. I think most folks are coming from V2 so I see nothing wrong with making comparisons to it. It's understood it's a new paradigm and things work differently but in the end we all just want to use the tool and not debug it.

I'll re-ask what I did before - - - can someone post a 'state of V3' as it stands today. You guys are working on code I assume - - what code is that - features - bugs - whatever, it must apply to the user base in some way so maybe a quick summary, etc. What works, what is broke, what is missing, what won't be there this year (or maybe ever), what is being worked on, etc. It doesn't have to be in great detail but it may allay fears (if that's the proper word here) about using V3. It would for me anyway.

Again - just to stop the negative responses to this post - - I AM NOT COMPLAINING - I FULLY COMPREHEND THIS IS A VOLUNTEER EFFORT AND SHOULD NOT EXPECT RESPONSES FOR DEMANDS - I just want to know where things are at - nothing more...

jchuchla
07-15-2013, 07:12 PM
Sorry if I came off as short. That wasn't my intention. Im just having trouble zeroing in on what your question is. My role on the team is to help users, create documentation, offer UI design input and monitor the forums.
There isn't a comprehensive list of features that work today and what to expect soon. (We don't have a marketing team to make one.). Another thing to note is that we're not using vixen 2 as a comprehensive list of things vixen 3 needs to do. So even if you think that's a fair comparison, that's not at all how we're handling it. There are plugins that existed there that will probably not exist in V3 unless someone steps up to write one. There is however another thread here that lists the controllers that have planned support in V3 and the current status.
Perhaps one of the best ways for you to make your judgement is to look at the bug tracking system (bugs.vixenlights.com). That will show you the list of problems found (and resolved), feature requests, and how the items are prioritized. It won't really say dates to expect a feature to become reality. (But that's not a reasonable expectation from a team of hobbyists anyhow)

The most active development right now is with the following functions:
Vixen 2 import tool
Discrete color support
Scheduler
Mark management(better integration into main sequencer and automatic beat detection, etc)

Along with that a lot of small misc bugs are being squashed.

One thing we all know needs to be dealt with soon (but I don't think anyone's actively working on it) is better patching and controller setup and management.

Regarding stability, that's hard to answer. Things are generally stable currently on the 3 digit builds (not so on the 4 digit nightly builds) features that are still too raw for general consumption are removed from these release builds. There does seem to be some performance lag with high channel counts but we don't really have enough data yet to say what the number is for a given machine.

Does this help?




--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Aurbo99
07-15-2013, 07:49 PM
deleted. double posted somehow

Aurbo99
07-15-2013, 07:50 PM
I have been testing the builds as they come out in the Beta stream, I believe, based on my testing, the Dev team is very close to a release that even the beginner will have little trouble getting up and going.

The longest part of setting up Vixen 3 is placing your display elements on your Preview. (The current Filters and Patching is being re-worked, so I wont include this)

If you worried about re-sequencing in time for this season, I created a 60 minute ( yes 1 hour long) sequence in less than 45 minutes- starting with a complete wipe of my system and re-install of Vixen 3.

The learning curve is not steep, and once you flush the Vixen 2 methods of sequencing out of your brain, your biggest problem may quickly become having TOO MANY effects in a sequence.

Traneman
07-16-2013, 12:47 AM
Jon,
First I want you to know that I find v3 very exciting and I have the utmost respect for the team and what they are doing for us and all for free.
Lord knows I could never do it. At this point it is a great program and it will get even better and I would love to use it for 2013.

You said that there are team members that are going to use it, I understand that, they are programmers and computer wizards.
If they run into a problem they can get around it I'm sure, I cant. My show would be shut down, what I really need to know is do you and the team think
that v3 is stable enough to use (by a computer dummy) this year. I will have 485 renard channels and 800 pixels.
I love how easy it was for me with little knowledge to set up a mega pixel tree and add effects to it, trust me if I can do it you guys are doing a great job making it user friendly.

Guess I'm getting a little nervous because I know I need to start sequencing soon, and just trying to decide what route to take.

Again.........THANKS FOR ALL YOU GUYS ARE DOING.

budude
07-16-2013, 03:13 AM
Sorry if I came off as short. That wasn't my intention.

Not at all - my response was based on the first 3x Vixen launch where folks were crucified for simple questions on how it was going - or why KC didn't open the code up (at the time) to make things go faster/easier/smoother - much bad blood there for a while...

Anyway - again, really just looking for an overall status. I think there are a lot of folks in the same boat - we're all at that crucial time of making the final decision on sequencer of choice and just want to be sure we go the right way. I know you/team can't/won't promise it will work 100% but - at least myself - I'd just like to see a bit more assurance. I might be completely off-base - and I don't follow things 100% on V3 but it seems like there have been a few posts about features not present or working. Maybe they are fixed or whatever but I was hoping a quick summary of the state of the entire project would be good. There are several parts - sequencer, visualizer, player and plug-in's to name the big ones. Maybe we can get a bigger role call of those using it now - sort of a vote of confidence kind of thing? Again, just talking out loud for others as well who have not decided. Thank you and the team for all your efforts.

corytcline
07-16-2013, 06:27 AM
I'm no developer or anything but i have tried to follow v3 as closely as i could over the years. I had lights blinking with v3 with the very first release. For me a Renard user with no pixels, it works, its ready. Only thing i have not tried to do with my setup and v3 is use the scheduler. Not saying it doesn't work just saying i have not tried it. If i can learn how to use the mark manager better than i do now I WILL be using v3 for my setup this year.

Best advice i can give for anyone on the fence about it is to download the latest release and check it out play around with it. See if it works with your particular setup. If it does not work with your setup then by all means send a bug report so the smart guys can fix it.
Happy sequencing everyone!

jchuchla
07-16-2013, 08:55 AM
You said that there are team members that are going to use it, I understand that, they are programmers and computer wizards.
If they run into a problem they can get around it I'm sure, I cant. My show would be shut down, what I really need to know is do you and the team think
that v3 is stable enough to use (by a computer dummy) this year. I will have 485 renard channels and 800 pixels.
I love how easy it was for me with little knowledge to set up a mega pixel tree and add effects to it, trust me if I can do it you guys are doing a great job making it user friendly.


Well I can tell you that there's a few team meets that aren't programmers. That includes me. I do have a programming background, but for embedded hardware and hardware control systems, I am by no means a windows programmer. Guys like me are on the team to bridge the gap between the programmers and normal users. We're obviously doing something right because you're already telling us that its easy to use. It will only get easier (and better organized) from here.
Your channel count is very similar to mine. I only have 50 or so renard channels, and about 1000 pixels. I am not running a super fast show pc like most of the programmers have. I'm using an older pentium 4 D with 2GB of ram. Things seem to be running just fine for me. That seems to me to be a good safe display size for V3 for this year bit gives you plenty to play with to get proficient on the software. But not so much that you'll be taxing the system.
At this point you shouldn't run into any show time problems. I wouldn't worry about your show being shut down. If you're going to see any problems,it will be bugs in the sequencer or preview that haven't yet been found and fixed. The things that I'm running into aren't necessarily problems, but rather things that I think are a lot slower to accomplish than they should be. (Too many clicks to get something done) Or effect options that don't exist yet. (If it does this, why doesn't it do this?)




--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

gizmohd
07-16-2013, 11:05 AM
I’m one of the V3 Team members and I have one of the more complicated displays. ~2500 pixels, and 150+ Renard channels. I’ve been making some complicated sequences just to STRESS V3 as much as possible in order to make it as stable as possible for everyone… Here's a rundown of the current effects and what they do:

Alternating: will alternate back and forth for the duration of the effect between two colors and/or gradients
Candle: flickers the lights at random intervals
Chase: creates an effect that chases from one end of lights to another
Nutcracker: a FULL implementation of the Nutcracker effects library from xLights/Nutcracker (one of the only sequencers out there with a complete implementation)
Pulse: Think of this as a RampUp/RampDown effect all in one.. Depending on how you configure it, it will Ramp Up, Down, Up then Down, etc.. etc...
SetLevel: Basic set level to turn lights on/off
Spin : a Chase effect that loops over and over again
Twinkle: Similar to the candle effect but give you so much more control over the color pallet and other options
Wipe: Now here's one to get excited over, Up till now, only one commercial product that I know of (LSP, there may be others but this one I know) allows you to control lights based on location in your display. But with this effect, you have the ability to wipe a 'wave' across your entire display if you choose, from left to right, right to left, top down or bottom up.



Sample Sequence in V3 with 2500 Pixels and assorted Renard Channels

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tz5ed5x3r6g… Now, this one was done 10 weeks ago… And much if not all of the choppiness is gone due to the fantastic work that the team has done in boosting performance.

gizmohd
07-16-2013, 11:05 AM
Here is a video that shows both the Alternating and Wipe effect and how you would/could use them.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVgH6VnY31Y

smeighan
07-16-2013, 04:16 PM
wow, so cool!

i have 12,000 channels. this year i expect to be close to be close to 20,000 channels. anyone test vixen 3 with channel counts like this?

sean

jchuchla
07-16-2013, 04:24 PM
I hear you have them already setup on your ceiling. Sounds like you're the perfect candidate to test!


--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

corytcline
07-16-2013, 04:38 PM
I’m one of the V3 Team members and I have one of the more complicated displays. ~2500 pixels, and 150+ Renard channels. I’ve been making some complicated sequences just to STRESS V3 as much as possible in order to make it as stable as possible for everyone… Here's a rundown of the current effects and what they do:

Alternating: will alternate back and forth for the duration of the effect between two colors and/or gradients
Candle: flickers the lights at random intervals
Chase: creates an effect that chases from one end of lights to another
Nutcracker: a FULL implementation of the Nutcracker effects library from xLights/Nutcracker (one of the only sequencers out there with a complete implementation)
Pulse: Think of this as a RampUp/RampDown effect all in one.. Depending on how you configure it, it will Ramp Up, Down, Up then Down, etc.. etc...
SetLevel: Basic set level to turn lights on/off
Spin : a Chase effect that loops over and over again
Twinkle: Similar to the candle effect but give you so much more control over the color pallet and other options
Wipe: Now here's one to get excited over, Up till now, only one commercial product that I know of (LSP, there may be others but this one I know) allows you to control lights based on location in your display. But with this effect, you have the ability to wipe a 'wave' across your entire display if you choose, from left to right, right to left, top down or bottom up.



Sample Sequence in V3 with 2500 Pixels and assorted Renard Channels

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tz5ed5x3r6g… Now, this one was done 10 weeks ago… And much if not all of the choppiness is gone due to the fantastic work that the team has done in boosting performance.
Very cool to see one with pixels and all the colors! I dont have pixels so I cant play with all those tools my display is all white lol. Thanks for sharing.

Santacarl
07-16-2013, 09:17 PM
Here is a video that shows both the Alternating and Wipe effect and how you would/could use them.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVgH6VnY31Y

Giz...the 2 posts describing what the effect does and then a demo of the latest are absolutely terrific. When you're not on the groundfloor discussions on what is in development you have no idea of exactly what is possible.....I find this extremely helpful. Thank you for taking the time to make and post them.....

SC

jpb
07-16-2013, 11:39 PM
I have just read the license agreement instead of blindly agreeing like I have done every other time. I didn't know I was agreeing to all that !!!

Jon

sallz0r
07-17-2013, 09:50 AM
Hi all,

sorry for the delay in my reply -- I've been sick with a winter flu (yes, I'm on the other side of the world to most of you!), so I'm still a bit behind. :-)

I'm not 100% sure on what the question exactly is from earlier in this thread -- sounds like people want a status update on how things are going? I'll try and give a broad answer, but if there's something specific you want more info on just ask.

As far as I'm concerned, it should be fine for people to use this year, depending on what features you use. It's fairly stable (there are always bugs, but we squash 'em when we find them), and there's a heap of features going into it, so I would expect that people would be mostly happy with how it works. However, as we've always said -- make sure it's suitable for what you need. It *doesn't* have all the features of Vixen 2.x, so if you desperately need feature XYZ for your show to work, well, it might not be in 3.x yet, and might not happen by the end of the year. So it's worth having a play around with it to see if I can do what you need it to.


The things we have that work well (not a complete list, just things I can think of off the top of my head):
-- sequencing with a range of effects
-- nutcracker effects!
-- a cool, fancy display preview
-- a range of popular output modules (eg. Renard, E1.31 come to mind, there's some DMX ones as well)
-- Vixen 2.x sequence importing (finished, will be in the next release)
-- discrete color support (eg. now you can either have colors mixed (if you have RGB lights), or 'discrete' colors (eg. if you have a minitree with independently colored strings)
-- we have 'marks' in sequences -- to do things like beat tracks, timing points, etc. -- but the interface isn't nice to use, so we hope to improve that soon


The things I can think of that are currently being worked on or discussed (so should be implemented "soon"):
-- rewriting a new, more powerful scheduler (there's currently a bad port of the 2.x scheduler in there, but it's not nice to use)
-- revamping the setup form and setup process (eg. the patching and filtering screen has copped a lot of flak, so we're trying to make it all more usable)
-- launcher functionality (I believe some people use this for LedTriks?)
-- RDS functionality (I'm not too familiar with this, sorry)
-- I want to revamp the way the data storage works -- it's currently all XML and results in _very_ large files. I want to redo the way a lot of it works.
-- documentation! tutorials! :-)

The things I believe _won't_ be implemented in time for this year (until a developer agrees to spend a chunk of time on it, at least):
-- effect combining in complex ways (eg. masking one effect with another, or colorizing one with the output of another)
-- anything remotely advanced with audio -- eg. there's a request to be able to pick an audio card to use, or to dynamically fade the audio volume based on time of night, etc.
-- more complex controller setups -- at the moment, you describe a 'bus' (eg. 250 channels of Renard), and it's up to you to figure out which controllers start at which channels. I'd like to get to a more detailed model (so you can detail what devices are on the bus, and what addresses they're at), but that probably won't happen this year. It might.... but I wouldn't count on it.
-- support for..... Papyrus? (I can't remember the name) -- someone talked about adding support for that software that made the face/mouth movement stuff. We'll eventually get there, 'cos it's cool and I'd like to support it...... just not this year.


So, I know that might not answer your question specifically, and it's a pretty random collection of features that are done/not done/in progress.... but it might give you an idea of where we're at. My gut feeling is that it's going to be good to use this year for people, assuming all the features you need are in it (eg. your controller modules, or any special effects, etc.). Possibly the _only_ concern I might have is for users with large channel counts -- over many thousands -- but that's only because I haven't explicitly tested it. (I used it myself last year for my show with about.... 1800 channels, I think? or maybe it was 1600..... and it worked fine, didn't break a sweat). But for all I know, there might be some performance issues once you hit.... 5k channels, or 10k, or 100k...... we just don't know.

So, that's my generic answer -- if you have someone more specific you'd like to know about, just ask! :-)

Cheers,
Michael

PS. oh, and don't stress -- we aren't taking offense to any comments, or taking anything the wrong way -- I completely understand when people need to ask questions for themselves and to figure out what they're doing. We'll try to answer them as best we can, but we're not good at marketing spin, so the answers might be blunt. ;-)

Santacarl
07-17-2013, 12:36 PM
Michael....thanks for the explanation. That really helps for planning purposes as we are fast closing in on the time when we have to decide what to use for this season.

I've commented IN BLUE on a couple of your thoughts/questions...as it will hopefully answer your question and/or provide feedback on what a typical user sees/experiences.

Possibly the _only_ concern I might have is for users with large channel counts -- over many thousands -- but that's only because I haven't explicitly tested it. (I used it myself last year for my show with about.... 1800 channels, I think? or maybe it was 1600..... and it worked fine, didn't break a sweat). But for all I know, there might be some performance issues once you hit.... 5k channels, or 10k, or 100k...... we just don't know. (See below for comment)

The things we have that work well (not a complete list, just things I can think of off the top of my head):

-- nutcracker effects!

I wanted to play with the Nutcracker effects using the layout/channels I hope to eventually use in my display. I set up a mega tree that uses 56 strings of 50 ct pixels....and played around with that as the major effect to explore. All in all, with the MT and all my other existing channels I already use I had just over 11,000 channels in the layout.

Nutcracker worked easily and performed exactly as advertised in the effect setup/addition. :biggrin2: However, upon playback the tree appeared to 'jerk' from color to color as though it had to think and then catch up with where the sequence actually was. It wasn't a smooth look at all. :zipped: Since I don't have all the hardware yet to test it on I don't know if what I expereienced is just a preview player issue or if the actual display will do the same with that number of channels.

Don't know if it matters but I'm running an average computer with a 2 core AMD @2.6 ghz.....4 GB ram...Windows 7 (32 bit) machine.....so I don't know if that is an issue either.


The things I can think of that are currently being worked on or discussed (so should be implemented "soon"):

-- launcher functionality (I believe some people use this for LedTriks?)

Yes, and that's a key player in my decision as I use LedTriks with TrixC boards which use a serial port for output.... for auto-announcements....artist name....tune to.....etc.



SC

gizmohd
07-17-2013, 09:14 PM
SC, no your experience with the preview is the same as mine. We are constantly working on improving the performance. But I have found that none of the sluggishness exists in the playback via tge scheduler. For one, the preview is not rendering hundreds of thousands of changes to the as it plays.

Sent from my SGH-T889 using Tapatalk 4 Beta

Santacarl
07-17-2013, 09:34 PM
But I have found that none of the sluggishness exists in the playback via tge scheduler. For one, the preview is not rendering hundreds of thousands of changes to the as it plays.


That is good to hear....Thanks for the feedback.....

I also thought, after I posted earlier, that maybe it was an issue with my video card which is pretty basic....

corytcline
07-18-2013, 10:20 PM
I downloaded latest version last night. At first for some reason nutcracker effects would not work but today it seems to work just fine. Must have been me. All and all felt i would report that my display preview works great my sequences i was working on are still there. Have not tried he mark manager yet but everything is working great for me here. Way to go guys!!

dsmjuggalo
07-18-2013, 11:29 PM
Question. When you import a file it chooses the channels it's gonna associate with the channels being imported but states that you'll be able to edit the channels chosen in the future.... Any idea how close this is to happening?

sallz0r
07-18-2013, 11:48 PM
Question. When you import a file it chooses the channels it's gonna associate with the channels being imported but states that you'll be able to edit the channels chosen in the future.... Any idea how close this is to happening?

Which version are you using? the official 3.0.6 release? If so, then it's been worked on in the mean-time, and is almost good-to-go -- just needs a bit more testing. You can either wait until 3.0.7, or download the latest auto-build from here (http://www.vixenlights.com/builds/). (At time of writing, that would be 3.0.6.18). Please note that these autobuilds are COMPLETELY untested, and there's no guarantees about any of them -- for example, the last few builds before .18 weren't even complete! (some modules were broken and didn't build correctly).

If you want to test it out and give feedback, feel free to try an autobuild -- just back up your Vixen 3 data first if you care about it, just in case it breaks something.

Cheers,
Michael

sallz0r
07-18-2013, 11:57 PM
I wanted to play with the Nutcracker effects using the layout/channels I hope to eventually use in my display. I set up a mega tree that uses 56 strings of 50 ct pixels....and played around with that as the major effect to explore. All in all, with the MT and all my other existing channels I already use I had just over 11,000 channels in the layout.

Nutcracker worked easily and performed exactly as advertised in the effect setup/addition. :biggrin2: However, upon playback the tree appeared to 'jerk' from color to color as though it had to think and then catch up with where the sequence actually was. It wasn't a smooth look at all. :zipped: Since I don't have all the hardware yet to test it on I don't know if what I expereienced is just a preview player issue or if the actual display will do the same with that number of channels.

Yeah -- as Gizmo pointed out, that could very well be the preview chewing CPU. If you have the task manager open and watch the CPU, does it max out when playing back? If so, when you disable the preview module (untick it) and play back, it should be a lot lower?

I would also be interested to see what happens when you have controllers set up, especially given the large channel counts. It _sounds_ like performance will be quite good, but again this isn't something that's been tested past ~2000 channels or so.



Yes, and that's a key player in my decision as I use LedTriks with TrixC boards which use a serial port for output.... for auto-announcements....artist name....tune to.....etc.

No worries. We're going to get a 'launcher' module sorted out soon, to be able to execute arbitrary applications in a sequence, so that should take care of that.

Hope that helps!
Michael

Santacarl
07-19-2013, 03:24 PM
Michael,

Couldn't get the 'quote' gizmo to work....so a copy and paste for a couple of responses.

Yeah -- as Gizmo pointed out, that could very well be the preview chewing CPU. If you have the task manager open and watch the CPU, does it max out when playing back? If so, when you disable the preview module (untick it) and play back, it should be a lot lower?

CPU usage without the preview ticked runs at around mid 20% values. With preview ticked it runs low to mid 30% ranges. Normal CPU idles around 2%....once Vixen is launched CPU goes to mid teens....even without a sequence loaded.....seems a bit high for a program that's not actually doing anything apparent.....just open.

Also, I saw an interesting aspect when I added the MT Nutcracker effect. When I click and drag an effect forward several seconds CPU usage spikes upwards of 85% and it takes several seconds for the 'drag' to get added/rendered to the sequence.....it's pretty slow especially when it also does not drag any further than you can see in the current window (4-5 seconds) then if you want a longer effect you have to wait until the first 'drag' show shows up....before you can drag and extend it another 4-5 seconds with yet another delay as you wait. So, from my limited observations, If I want an effect to run for an extended time it would take a minute or two to complete dragging it to the end point. While that is certainly faster than doing each string individually as in the past it is still somewhat frustrating. I can only assume Vixen is having to think about the 58 strings of pixels and it takes a while to run through them all and effect the rendering (if that's the correct term).....and while doing so CPU usage is very high

I would also be interested to see what happens when you have controllers set up, especially given the large channel counts. It _sounds_ like performance will be quite good, but again this isn't something that's been tested past ~2000 channels or so.

Well...I'm not there yet but will be happy to provide feedback once I am....but it won't be anytime soon as that channel count is in the plan for the 2014 season.....so it won't help much at this stage..

sparky588
07-19-2013, 06:18 PM
is there a place that has the locations of your instructional videos in which order thats recomended???? i keep getting bounced around and see part 1 then theres 2 part 2's and so forth??

jchuchla
07-20-2013, 12:02 AM
The part 1 thats part of the main series doesn't have any follow ups yet. Eventually I will follow it up with 4 additional parts on the sequencer, preview, controllers, and scheduler. I'm stalling a bit for a few things to flesh out in the UI before recording those parts.
Everything else thats currently there is basically quick tips or videos targeted at specific areas.


--Jon Chuchla--

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

sallz0r
07-23-2013, 02:17 PM
CPU usage without the preview ticked runs at around mid 20% values. With preview ticked it runs low to mid 30% ranges. Normal CPU idles around 2%....once Vixen is launched CPU goes to mid teens....even without a sequence loaded.....seems a bit high for a program that's not actually doing anything apparent.....just open.

Also, I saw an interesting aspect when I added the MT Nutcracker effect. When I click and drag an effect forward several seconds CPU usage spikes upwards of 85% and it takes several seconds for the 'drag' to get added/rendered to the sequence.....it's pretty slow especially when it also does not drag any further than you can see in the current window (4-5 seconds) then if you want a longer effect you have to wait until the first 'drag' show shows up....before you can drag and extend it another 4-5 seconds with yet another delay as you wait. So, from my limited observations, If I want an effect to run for an extended time it would take a minute or two to complete dragging it to the end point. While that is certainly faster than doing each string individually as in the past it is still somewhat frustrating. I can only assume Vixen is having to think about the 58 strings of pixels and it takes a while to run through them all and effect the rendering (if that's the correct term).....and while doing so CPU usage is very high


Hmm. I'd be interested to see your config, if you don' mind sharing it? If you could zip up your entire Vixen 3 data directory and attach it, that would be really useful, and I'll try and track down what's happening.

Which version are you using? the 3.0.6 release proper, or have you been testing some of the newer automatic test builds? (which may contain broken stuff, be unstable, etc.).

Thanks!
Michael

Santacarl
07-23-2013, 07:33 PM
Michael,
I only see one directory (SystemData) that looks like a data directory (attached). There's a module data directory but the only thing I see there are several pictures of my house and a preview template in the form of an xml file..... If you meant the whole file in "My Documents"....or whatever you need specifically...let me know.

As to version. I am using 3.0.6 "proper" the one linked in this tread in post 1. I downloaded it at the end of June if that matters.

Are you suspecting an issue? I assume you are since you said you'll try to track down what's happening....

Thanx

SC


Hmm. I'd be interested to see your config, if you don' mind sharing it? If you could zip up your entire Vixen 3 data directory and attach it, that would be really useful, and I'll try and track down what's happening.

Which version are you using? the 3.0.6 release proper, or have you been testing some of the newer automatic test builds? (which may contain broken stuff, be unstable, etc.).

Thanks!
Michael