Vcv as library (no gui)


(Sven Salt) #1

good evening modular people,

i am new to this Forum and Rack, so i am Happy to say hello to all of vcv family:)

when patching some modules in rack i was wondering if one tryed to run vcv wothout GUI [just loading and playing a patch].
I have plans on running vcv within another app, serving for dynamic audio in another context.
Is vcv able to be used like that, does someone have experience?
I felt like asking before hacking on the src

Thank you in beforehand:)


(Andrew Belt) #2

No, it is not possible at this time.


(Sven Salt) #3

How do you think about my use case? I see lots of Potential.
For example think of a Plugin connected to lfo,vco,… Just sending values from some game and Viola the Player gets acoustic feedback.

Another Idea would be running vcv on a raspi embedding it into some Hardware and you get a virtual synth.

Rack offers designing an Instrument, there should be more ways to “Play” it imo :slight_smile:


(Rémi Collin) #4

Maybe the upcoming VST version of VCV rack is what you are looking for ?


(Andrew Belt) #5

Would cost around six figures. Perhaps a company like Epic Games or Unity Technologies might want this for generative video game music and could fund it.

I’m not eager to reach out though, since it’s highly unlikely anyone would be interested, and there are much things I could do with my time.


(Skrylar) #6

Sidebar: the original pure data library is still around and, as far as I know, maintained. If you need something embeddable in the immediate case you could look to that. It’s been mentioned that Spore used it.

I’m not convinced of the viability of generative music tuned to games though. Venturing much further than simple oscillators, light sampling and a single bus-wide reverb easily gets you in to blowing your computation budget when it also has to be shared with AI code among other things.

Have eyeballed what it would take to wrap up Rack as an LV2 plugin. Although Linux (where LV2 usually lives; it’s not exclusive per se but nobody on Win/mac bothers) tends to be very tolerant of crazy plugin-loading schemes.


(Joopvanderlinden) #7

A continuation of this thought (probably impossible, way too expensive, etc) would be a player (possibly an app) that could load patches and playing them back. Why? Because when recording a patch, you will remove the unpredictable elements. I would love a way to be surprised by my patches every time, over and over. Of course, that can be done inside Rack, but I can’t play that on my phone.


(Skrylar) #8

Isn’t a player going to end up being 80%+ of the same code as the DAW? If the phones were powerful enough you would just run Rack on them in the first place.

Something like this is probably doable, and I think there are one or two video game engines in days long gone that did that. Had a couple of verse/chorus lines broken up so when loop points came up they could opt to insert different song parts but otherwise it was pre-cooked and all the engine did was queue and mixdown.


(Joopvanderlinden) #9

Yes, probably most the same code, althought I’m not a coder, so what do I know…
You could do without the graphics. Maybe pre-calculate the patch into a wav or mp3 to avoid glitches and crackles.


(Sven Salt) #10

Rack seems to be really good choice when it comes to modular synths, though i cant tell about Puredata due to few experience. Might have a look Into that but i might first try to convice vcv to do things i want. Cant predict the amount of work before grabbing the src.

Computability is a good Point. There are Limits, especially for Games when more than audio is involved. But i think it should be small Overhead to what Rack does for some games.

Thanks a lot for your usefull advises:)