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Friday, November 19, 2010

Audio Sound node - follow on

Following on from my previous post about audio:

In the Trax editor you can actually trim the sound directly. It's very hidden and there's no graphical hint at all, but if you LMB drag on the top left / right of the sound node, over the top time text, then you'll be able to trim the sound directly. If you're in the CamSequencer you can also, by doing a Shift MMB Drag, shift the audio itself within the sound track. All hidden features, but they work (only in 2011)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Hidden Audio functionality in Maya2011

New Audio Handling in Maya2011

I wanted to point out a couple of hidden features for Audio handling that aren't in the docs and that kind of slipped into Maya2011 via the CameraSequencer upgrades. The audio node in Maya used to just have 2 main attrs, path and offset, that was all you could do, point it to a wav and set the start time. If you now look at an audio node in 2011 there's a ton of new attributes to control the behaviour of the audio. Unfortunately most of this is hidden unless you're using the AttributeEditor or CameraSequencer, in which case RMB on a sound you'll get access to Mute, that's about it. In the Trax sound is still just a simple, poorly supported add-on..... or is it?

Firstly there's now a Mute attr, so you can mute out those audio's you don't want, this displays in both Sequencer and Trax, but for Trax you have to set the attr direct.  Now for the more complex stuff. If you're used to editing in Trax you're used to sliding the start and end times, trimming the clip etc. There's no UI support for Sound for any of this, BUT you can still do it via the attr's directly.

So, 2 sets of attrs work together. Offset and EndFrame, SourceStart and SourceEnd. The Offset is no longer what it used to be, this is the start of the clip nothing more. If like us you have tons of sound code designed to offset audio then it's all stuffed! you need to manage both Offset and EndFrame at the same time now in order to shift a sound node along time.

However, using the Source attrs you can now trim the audio, directly in Maya..... there's not a lot been mentioned about this and we only found it by accident.

 The 2 sound nodes here are the same bit of audio, but the lower has been offset to start at frm 120, because the source start has also been moved to frm120 the audio is still in sync with the original one, just trimmed to start later on. The end source has been moved in, trimming the audio to stop earlier. You can also add silence to the start of the sound if needed.

Thought I'd share that as it's actually going to be really useful, think I'll push for the UI  integration from Autodesk so that the sound node is treated like the clips are, about to be trimmed directly rather than having to set the attrs up manually.