Looking for advice

Hello all!

I’m Greg from Seattle/New York and looking for some advice for building what I want. I’m a musician and want to add video into my live performance rig. I’m looking specifically at using a Raspberry pi 4. (Someone gave me two! A 1 GB and 4GB model). Id like to make a simple player/controller for video with one of these and possibly capture live video via a piCamera or something similar. Ideally I’d like to keep it small. The last thing I need is more gear to haul around.

I came across the rPi wiki here and looked into r_e_c_u_r and waaave_pool which look like tools that would do what I’m looking for but also notice they dont currently work with rPi4. Do I have that correct? If that is correct can someone point me to some tools that might work with the RPi4? I’m new to raspberry pi but not video work. I’m pretty good at following directions!

I appreciate any help/advice!


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rpi 4s have a bit of an issue with the raspbian os and the baked in gl drivers that makes graphics based programming a bit of a giant issue, at least on my end of things! i would have difficulty recommending them for video processing tools until that issue gets resolved as i am unlikely to have much time for editing the kernel any time soon. just simply for video playback tho they should work fine (and in 4k!), id look into omx player and using .bashrc to set one up as a plug n play media player

Maybe Puredata/GEM? A cursory Google search didn’t turn up anything about GEM on a PI4 but if it works it might be a decent option that could take advantage of the Pi4’s extra processing power.

Hi Greg. Do you already have a plan/concept or any strong opinions about what you’re looking to do visually? I’d suggest you try to define a few things before you defining the setup, like

  • do you expect your visuals to be strictly in sync or react to the audio signal? (“not necessarily” would make things easier)
  • does your music show have a fixed structure/narrative/tracklist or you make it on the fly? (“yes” would allow you -maybe even require you somehow- to structure the video part of the show in a way that follows the audio part)
  • if needed, would you be able/willing to add a small MIDI controller to your setup and use it during the show to control the visuals? or are you looking for something that doesn’t need to be taken care of?

(not that I have full answers for each scenario :slight_smile: but some approaches that could work in a scenario won’t work in a different one)

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Thanks for the info folks.

Ideally Id like to have a “palette” of videos/visuals and something that will run it. Something that simply loops videos, cues up the next video, and perhaps some light effects that I can control on the fly. I’ve created a bunch of things in VDMX and would simply like a paired down version to “play” while I’m making music.

I already have a couple midi controllers in my sound setup and have no problem using them for the video situation, but i need all the juice my computer provides for sound. I cant run video on the same machine so I was hoping there might be a raspberry solution (or something similar).

Nothing needs to be audio reactive, nor does it need to be synced or combined with the audio in any formal way. I want to improvise with the video. Does that make sense?

Thanks again for any help!

Looks like you have plenty of options then…maybe even a generic Kodi or LibreElec setup with the right keyboard shortcuts. Not sure if that would support any effects, but there are various plugins available. Not a particularly smart approach, but maybe relatively standardized (and for those who care: it would even run on a Pi Zero)

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Thanks… What would a smart approach be?

@andrei_jay pi4 only differs from 3 via the windowing system, so most GL examples you find online will work just fine.

Simple C++ Example: https://github.com/matusnovak/rpi-opengl-without-x/blob/master/triangle_rpi4.c

@lupertazzi If you’re a real shader freak like me glslviewer works fine on the 4 but its not so much for video playback as it is for synthesis and 3d model rendering: https://github.com/patriciogonzalezvivo/glslViewer