Quick tutorial for Ramp (and Sine/Triangle) modifiers

Mon Dec 15, 2014 6:01 pm

You may have noticed the Ramp, Sine Oscillator, and Triangle Oscillator modifiers, which allow you to get more complex movement with your parameters. Here's a quick explanation of how they work. You might want to follow along in your own Magic project to see the results of the output.

I'll start with a simple scene in which a polygon rotates:

RotatePolygon1.png (17.75 KiB) Viewed 9648 times

In the above case, the audio volume is directly linked to rotation angle. The movement of the polygon is simple: high volume causes a large rotation angle, and low volume causes little or no rotation. If the volume is constant, the rotation won't change.

Now, I'll add a Ramp modifier:

RotatePolygon2.png (18.64 KiB) Viewed 9648 times

In the above example, the rotation angle constantly increases. The speed of the increase is determined by the Ramp value (1.0 by default). Even if there is no audio volume, the rotation angle will change. However, the volume does affect the angle: it instantaneously causes the rotation to move faster.

To illustrate this further, I'll set the Ramp's value to 0:

RotatePolygon3.png (19.02 KiB) Viewed 9648 times

Here, the rotation angle doesn't increase by itself at all. But, audio volume does cause it to increase. This is one of my favorite effects, because it results in a nice pulsing movement.

If you want the pulsing to be really dramatic, you can add a Scale modifier to increase the Ramp's response:

RotatePolygon5.png (20.32 KiB) Viewed 9647 times

Now the polygon will rotate even faster in response to volume. But it still won't rotate at all if the volume is silent.

So, in all of the above cases, the audio volume affects the Ramp. But what if you just want a constant Ramp, with no influence from volume? You can set the source to "No source", which effectively sends out a volume of 0. Then you can set the Ramp parameter to whatever value you want:

RotatePolygon4.png (19.31 KiB) Viewed 9648 times

In this case, the polygon will rotate at a perfectly constant speed, with no influence from audio volume whatsoever.

The Sine Oscillator and the Triangle Oscillator work in the same way, although they create different kinds of movement.

Take a few minutes to play around, and I'm sure you'll come up with some cool effects!

Site Admin
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Re: Quick tutorial for Ramp (and Sine/Triangle) modifiers

Tue Dec 16, 2014 6:55 am

Thanks - this is a clear and useful lesson.
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Location: London, UK

Re: audio in movie exports

Thu Jun 02, 2016 2:51 pm

Those are amazingly good examples and were easy to re-create.

Matt Linke
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Joined: Fri May 27, 2016 5:30 pm

Re: Quick tutorial for Ramp (and Sine/Triangle) modifiers

Thu Jun 02, 2016 3:04 pm

Very concise. :-)

Something I like to do with this kind of setup is to add a GATE modifier at the top of the modifer stack, to hold the rotation and only have it respond to the peaks.
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Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2016 5:33 pm

Re: Quick tutorial for Ramp (and Sine/Triangle) modifiers

Fri Oct 07, 2016 12:24 pm

Thank you!
Really usefull!
I am glad I purchased Magic! :)
Posts: 40
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2016 7:15 am

Re: Quick tutorial for Ramp (and Sine/Triangle) modifiers

Wed Jan 11, 2017 11:02 am

thanks for this interesting tutorial! you expand out range of knowledge!
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2017 10:43 am

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