Sound to Colour

Hey all,

We are two artists working on an interactive installation where sound is translated into colour. All we would need is a simple block colour page (background colour) that changes in correspondence to aspects of the sound. We were thinking…

volume -opacity or brightness
pitch -hue

not as pressing but if possible…

tempo -smoothness of blending (through beat detection?)

The main thing we would be looking for help with would be taking to values from the audio input and putting them into the variables for the background colour.

Can anyone help?



A little bit idea u can use HSL(join) in order to store the different parameters of sound into variable and join them into a color variable. For the sound detection i can’t really help yeah with this parameters (i’m usually using fft4channels and beatdetector modules from tonfilm and that work ok for me).

Btw i’m a newbie so i’ll have better responses from power user.
I’m just bringing my little contribution.

Cheers man! Every little helps and that was more than a little for us.

Thanks again


i agree with anachronik, tonfilms modules might be the best way to start as they output some sort of meaningful data.

overall volume can be achieved by +(spectral) all 4 values of fft4channels divided by 4.

pitch detection, mmm can we do that with vvvv ? i’m not so sure.

if you guys are coming from the max/msp land then consider using max for audio analysis and send data via OSC or MIDI to vvvv. shouldnt be a problem. Max is just a bit better at handling audio i think and u will find more approaches to audio analysis.

Hey again, thats a really good idea actually, trying to get the issue of cost at the moment unfortunately but will have a look. Have been working with PD for a wee bit but am still totally confused by it.

Thanks again for all the help, i will have a go and see what i can come up with.



If my memory is good u can use the fiddle~ (maybe with bonk~) object within pd or within max in order to make some pitch detection. And u use both osc externals to send that number from pd, max to vvvv.