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Basic Concepts

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Basic concepts

EboSuite application

The EboSuite application handles all visual playback, mixing and manipulation. The application runs in the background in a separate instance from Ableton Live, so all video processing is done outside Ableton Live to maximise performance and reliability. The EboSuite application is controlled by the EboSuite plug-ins in Ableton Live.

The plug-ins

Currently EboSuite consists of 56 plug-ins, organised in five categories:

Sources:

  • eSession – adds video playback to Session View
  • eArrangement – use videos on audio tracks in Arrangement View
  • eSampler – trigger, pitch, record, stretch and scratch video
  • eSimpler – turn Ableton Live’s Simpler into a video sampler
  • eISF – use ISF shaders to generate visuals
  • eVideoIn – use the video stream of a webcam, iPhone or iPad in EboSuite
  • eText – use the name of a clip in the video mix or send it over Syphon to other video applications

Mixing:

  • eTrackTransform – position, scale, rotate individual tracks
  • eBlend – use blending modes to mix video tracks
  • eCrossfade – use visual crossfade effects to mix videos
  • eFade – control the opacity of a track
  • eFeedback – create a video feedback loop on the master track with different feedback modes
  • eGroup – add visual effects on grouped tracks
  • eMask – cut out part of a track
  • eReturnTrack – add visual effects on return tracks
  • eVideoSend – send the video output of a track to another track or other video applications
  • eVideoReceive – receive the visual output of another track or the visual output of other video applications

FX:

  • eFX-ISF  – use ISF shaders to generate and/or manipulate visuals
  • eFX  – 30 modular, stackable visual effect plug-ins for realtime image manipulation and processing

Tools:

  • eOutput – control the output window from within Live
  • eConvert – convert video to Hap codec
  • eSamplerSliceSettings – control the audio analyser of the eSampler to automatically slice samples

Extra:

  • ePoly – create polyphonic and polyscopic compositions
  • eComper – consolidate a MIDI clip to a video file
  • eLoopStutter – bring dynamic ‘beat repeat’-like effects to eClips

Video tracks

Currently up to 64 video tracks can be used simultaneously with EboSuite. 512 video files can be used in a single Live set and on a single track. The specifications of your hardware (CPU, GPU) might limit the amount of tracks that you can use simultaneously.

Mixing videos

To mix videos you first have to create at least two video tracks by adding at least two visual source plug-ins to your Live set (eSession, eArrangement, eSampler, eSimpler, eVideoIn or eText). By default the opacity of the video tracks is linked to the volume sliders in Live’s audio mixer.

The order of the tracks determines which track is on top and therefore will be visible when its volume/opacity is set to maximum. The right most track (Session View) or bottom most track (Arrangement View) will be on top. Changing the position order of the tracks in Live’s Arrangement or Session View will also change the order in the video mix.

Use the eTrackTransform, eBlend, eMask, eFade and eCrop plug-ins to arrange and mix video tracks.

Assign the tracks to AB crossfade sources and use the eCrossfade plug-in to mix video Live’s crossfader.

Using warped clips

When you use Live 10 you need to save the Warp markers when you enable or change the Warp markers. Otherwise eSession. eArrangement, the eSampler and the eSimpler will not be able to use the Warp markers, which leads to unexpected results, like freezing video, out-of-sync video and black output. Click the ‘save’ button in the Sample section of the audio clip playback properties. Each time you make changes to the Warp markers you need to save them to see the effect of your changes.

Note: When you use Live 11 you will not have to save Warp markers.

The reason for this limitation is that Ableton does not give acces to the Warp markers in Live 10. We can only use one set of Warp markers that is stored in the .asd file after pressing save. When you change the Warp markers and press save, the video playback is automatically updated (this takes more or less one second).

A video clip can only have one set of Warp markers. So if you load multiple instances of a video clip in your Live set, editing the Warp markers from one video clip (and thus saving them) will change the Warp markers for all instances (since you need to save them to use them).

Note: When you use Live 11 you will not have to deal with these issues.

Video codecs and image files

EboSuite is compatible with many video codecs, like Hap, H264, ProRes, MPEG-4, DV and Photo-JPEG. We recommend you to try out different codecs, compression settings and image sizes to find out what works best in your situation and with your hardware configuration.

Important note: Choosing the right codec and compression settings is crucial for optimal performance and reliability of EboSuite. Only the Hap codec is optimised for live video applications, so we recommend you to use Hap encoded videos. You’ll need an SSD  drive to playback Hap properly.  Read more about video codecs in the Video codecs section of this manual.

EboSuite’s eSampler and eSimpler handle image files as well,  like .jpg, .png etc. 

Unfortunately the eSession and eArrangement plug-in don’t handle image files anymore, because Ableton Live doesn’t accept image files on audio tracks anymore (since Live 10.10+).

Error and warning messages

EboSuite will warn you when an unsupported or unexpected situation is detected by showing an error or warning message. You can open and close the error and warning message section of the plug-in interface with the small arrow in the right-bottom of the interface. When there is an error or warning message the arrow wil turn yellow (warning) or red (error) and the error/warning section will unfold to show the message. When the unsupported or unexpected situation is resolved the error/warning message will disappear automatically. Refer to the ‘Error and warning messages’ section of this manual to see a list of the error and warning messages.

Dials/sliders

General information about dials and sliders:

  • The value is visible when you move the mouse pointer over the dial/slider or the label.
  • You can change the value with the mouse, but also by entering the value with keys and pressing enter (for some parameters which use a custom or changing value range this can react a bit unexpected).
  • You can have fine control with the mouse when you hold the shift button.
  • If a dial has an triangle at the top you can also click on the triangle to apply that ‘center’ value.

Info buttons

Use the info buttons (?) in the interface of the plug-ins to learn about specific elements and concepts. The button will open a pop-up window with information and a button that links to the online manual with more detailed information and tutorial/Quick-tip videos.

Info view

Use Ableton Live’s Info View to learn more about EboSuite’s interface elements and functions. Most interface elements will show an Info View description when the mouse pointer hoovers over the element. The Info View section needs to be revealed to show this. To reveal it, click on the triangle in the lower left corner of Live’s interface. You can find more information about Info View in the Ableton Live manual.

Info pop-ups

Many interface elements show an Info pop-up when you hoover over them and wait for two seconds.

Tutorial (version 1.x)

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