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Live Music Visualizer

Apr 14 2011 | 3:55 pm


I am currently trying to create a live music visualizer, however I am relatively new to Max and have come across a few issues so far…

The idea is similar to the clavilux 2000 ( however I want to use it for non MIDI instruments such as guitar, bass and drums.

The images will be based on space odyssey –

Note frequency triggers specific colours – based on Alexander Rimmington

Velocity controls speed of movement of image and alpha

Note length controls length of image produced

I have already managed to get audio to trigger colours in accordance to particular note frequencies and amplitude.

To do this I have used the pitch~ object to analyse the audio and then used ‘If’ statements to specify the frequency bands and trigger specific colours.


The colours produced sometimes appear erratic (I assume because of note harmonics / tiny background noises).

I’ve tried a minimum amplitude but this means that sometimes colours are not produced for quieter notes. I have also tried reducing the output peak to one, however the display still appears erratic.


I’m having trouble with the creation of graphics in jitter. We have looked into / render etc but can’t find a way of creating a line of a particular colour, from nothing, that appears to come towards you and lasts the length of the note played.

It would be wonderful if someone could help or advise me in any way.



Apr 19 2011 | 3:30 pm

Hi, any help with this would be much appreciated.



May 03 2011 | 12:07 pm

Check out the Jitter-examples folder inside the Max5 folder. Very useful little patches.

Aug 16 2011 | 5:36 pm

I have a done a little bit of small playing around – somebody suggested jit.poke~ which is great fun and I use an fffb~ to split up the audio signal. There is a post called Hippie Patching that has some decent visuals in it. You might have a look.

May 29 2014 | 10:27 pm

Hi James,

I’m trying to implement a similar idea to the clavilux 2000 for a course project at university. How did you map the color wheel on the circle of fifths?

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