Resolume 6 Is Here
Resolume comes in two editions: Avenue and Arena, the former more for the solo visualist and indpendent VJs, the latter more for bigger-budget productions. (I could talk about where that line is technically, but frankly with all live visual software, this comes down to the fact that part of the user market has more money to spend because they get paid more. That in turn funds the development of the tools, so no complaints.)
That’s not all, but those are the things that I think will be the most relevant to the most users.
Layer groups and masking! Okay, this changes everything. Layers can have sub-groups, expanding that powerful layer metaphor. And a layer can work as a mask. So that changes how the whole tool works creatively.
It’s easier to manage and trigger clips. This alone I think might be worth upgrading – or switching. Persistent clips and locked clips make it harder to lose or accidentally trigger clips, respectively. You can also trigger next and previous columns, for scenes of clips. That should work well as they say for theater shows and the like. This should be familiar to Ableton Live users, but it’s also an idea Mark Coniglio has championed in his software, including Isadora. It’s something we should see more of – perhaps missing simply because developers aren’t normally familiar with what it takes to run theater, dance, and other performances.
There’s Ableton Link support. Easy networked sync with Ableton Live, iOS apps, desktop apps, other instances of Resolume – everything that supports the de factor Link sync standard, even without MIDI.
The interface is easier to manage. Without making Resolume hyper-modular (like something like VDMX), the developers have at least given us more flexibility. You can drag things around, and the UI works better on bigger screens. Most importantly, previews are more visible.
Standard features from other tools are there, too. A more-standard color palette, browser and media manager (à la Ableton etc.) are included.
You can make animated envelopes. A new editor, with presets, allows for more sophisticated envelopes – and might turn Resolume into a replacement for motion graphics software for a lot of quick jobs.
Text generators and effects. See above. Also: how to make the sponsor happy. Hey, you need to eat…
Map colors to MIDI, assign controllers more easily. A MIDI and OSC and DMX overhaul should make controller mapping easier. (Ableton Live, Traktor – I’m really waiting for you to someday get this right.) And you can use all those disco-colored music controllers for color-coding clips. (Oddly, it’s visual software that really needs this, much as music software really kind of doesn’t.)