Beginner guides and resources on live video glitch art

Hey everyone :wave: I am pretty new to the whole glitch / analog video world but have loved messing around so far.

I am less technical and more interested in the live aspect of video glitch art. Would love to see some resources on people running through their set ups for live visuals and what they use to achieve certain effects.

I am currently working with:

  • Panasonic WJ-AVE5
  • 2 dirty video mixers (one of which I made myself)
  • 2 DVD players
  • CRT TV
  • Projector
  • Also just bought my first glitch device, the Videffektor by fluxmonkey

So i guess to summarise, these are the things I’d be interested in if anything comes to mind:

  • Live set up rundowns
  • Device recommendations
  • DIY device recommendations for beginners
  • Any useful reading or videos on glitch art and electronics that helped you out

Thanks in advance!

Sounds like you’ve got plenty to start having some fun with analog glitchies! Luv the AVE-5, it’s got a good TBC that can handle dirty signals in an interesting way, and the internal feedback loop is classic. There’s too much gear out there at all different price/accessibility levels to recommend any piece in particular, but one handy piece of kit that is always great for experimentation would be an old camera with analog outs that you can route into the mix. Keep an eye out for any vintage camcorders or CCTV cameras that are still semi-functional, they can usually be found for crazy cheap in thrift/repurpose shops if you’re lucky, tripods too. I mainly use them for capturing feedback from CRT displays or projectors, which each have their own flavor of video chaos depending on factors like camera sensor/lens, orientation in front of the display, moving objects between the camera and screen, etc. etc.

As far as live setup, you’ll definitely want to keep things fairly organized in a case to avoid scrambling too much with video cables and laying out loose devices on a table upon arrival at the performance. Settle on the essential pieces of gear you definitely want to use out in the wild, and note the dimensions of each device, it’ll be helpful to narrow down a search for an appropriate case. I thrifted an old suitcase that I fitted with foam inserts, then traced along the outlines of my video mixers (AVE-5 + Edirol V4, Korg Nanokontrol) and cut out perfectly-sized spaces for them to fit snugly in the bottom compartment. I’ve used a generous amount of velcro tape to attach things to the wall of the top compartment, which includes an LCD preview monitor, PS2 Slim + remote (for DVDs), Pi module (Auto Waaave), and a ClearClick analog video capture box for recording. There’s also a few other small devices that I have bouncing around in there sometimes (Mismatcher, Retrotink 2X, etc.) Cable management with a setup like this is kinda crazy and is still a mess I’m trying to keep under control.

Obviously you’ll want to allocate enough space for appropriate power solutions. In addition to a small power strip with outlets and an extension cord, I try to have as many things as possible juiced by USB power, so I have a powered USB Hub in there along with a few of these USB-DC Power converters to make stuff like my old CCTV cam much more handy by giving it the capability to run off of a regular ol’ USB power bank far away from the case or any wall outlets.

I could go on, but for now you should just have some fun and start playing around with what you’ve got before chasing down a bunch of gear. Looking forward to seeing what you share and thanks for joining the community!

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Thanks for all the advice, Zawa! Yeah, a camera is definitely next on my shopping list. Definitely feel what you are saying about not just continuously chasing gear. There is always going to be another bit of gear that you don’t have.

Do you downscale any video from a computer to your mixer? Curious how you have found balancing different video inputs. And if you have any videos of your stuff, I’d love to take a look!

Thanks again for the reply

I try to use a computer for as little as possible in my setup, mostly due to it not being able to fit in my mobile VJ case. The instances where I do find myself using one usually involves upscaling the VJ rig to HD resolution then using a USB-C → HDMI capture device on the macbook for recording and streaming, but I’ve since picked up a standalone HD capture device that records straight to microSD, so my upscaled recording is now handled in the case for live shows.

I do like using devices for digital video in the chain when I can, though. For portability’s sake, one of the more interesting solutions I’ve found for carrying around a trove of web-sourced videos in a small device that’s natively capable of standard-def output is using an iPod Video/Classic with a 30-pin to AV cable.
Disclaimer, there are a couple drawbacks to using them (first being their relatively prohibitive market price these days), but I happened have several lying around after being really into drive-modding them a few years back, and the ultra small size and USB/battery power is very compelling for my mobile VJ needs. Putting videos on them can be a bit of a pain depending on how you source them; I largely grab them via Stacher for Mac from Youtube playlists I’ve made. Then, the vids need to be downscaled to iPod resolution, which Handbrake happens to have a handy preset for, then they’re synced to iPod. I’m using the stock iPod OS so the video playback options are very simple, but it is what it is. Normally iPods will return to the menu after a video ends, so they need to be arranged in a Video Playlist for uninterrupted playback. No shuffle option for vid playlists though, which makes me sad. Surely there’s gotta be a custom ipod OS that handles media more gracefully or other small video-oriented devices from a decade-or-so ago that may be better for this sort of thing, but like I said I’ve just had a couple iPods lying around and they’ve been really handy for having several gigs worth of material on me without taking up valuable physical space. Ideally, I think I’d have a lot more fun replacing the iPods with a r_e_c_u_r unit that I’ve put together, but I’m still figuring out how to best make its features work for me performance-wise.

If space isn’t as critical of an issue and you want a device that’s capable of playing back web vids and a bunch of digital video sources in a single analog-capable box for relatively cheap, I’ve previously gushed about the glorious Playstation 3 here: Sony PS3 - all-time device for displaying modern + retro media on analog gear?

No shade at all on PC-centric setups, I’ve just found my current glitch art style to be more reactive than generative at the moment, so all I really need with the gear I’ve got is just stuff to play back vids via composite/s-video with as few adapters as possible.

Thanks for the interest about my stuff! Despite having mentioned that my recorder situation is mostly figured out, I’ve been really bad at actually pulling them off the cards and exporting them to share online lately. :face_with_spiral_eyes: But the main place I post stuff is @mystic.stylus on instagram if you’re on there.

Thankfully there’s some dedicated local music archivists in my area that have managed to capture some of the shows that I’ve had the pleasure of providing visuals for, notably our monthly open-aux synth/experimental night called Squared Wave in Gainesville, FL. Here’s a couple, with many more hosted on this channel:

Cheers!

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@glitchybusiness hi and welcome to Scanlines! Please make sure you dig through the existing posts, as what you’ve been looking for has been covered by various people here. A good starting point: “Topics tagged setup

Here are some posts regarding setup and techniques I’ve been using with Pixelflowers, a duo I’m part of:

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