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Interactive granular texture synthesiser

An interactive granular texture synthesiser built in TouchDesigner, utilising real time signal processing of the domain-specific language Faust (functional audiostream), and the corresponding TD_Faust operator. I am using Apple’s ARKit to send FaceID data as OSC signals via the UDP protocol into TD, as well as mediapipe for the hand tracking. The hand tracking controls the effects parameters of Faust just like an XY-pad, only with an additional Z axis which tracks how close your hand is, visualised by the circle shrinking or growing. That one is mapped to the filter cutoff of the reverb, which is also implemented into the FM synth and can be downloaded as a VST3 as well as a component plugin (MacOS only).

Project Demonstration

Using mediapipe for the hand tracking and the ZigSim app to send OSCĀ  data via the UDP protocol into TD.


An Interview with Stanford graduate David Braun, who wrote the TD_Faust operator that is used in the project.

How it works

The granular looper itself is quite simple and functions via a read and write table that takes 5 inputs. Record is mapped to the mouth open parameter coming from ARKit within TouchDesigner:
looper = rwtable(tablesize, 0.0, recindex, _, readindex)
    record = button("[2]Record") : int;
    readspeed = hslider("[0]Read Speed", 1, 0.001, 10, 0.01);
    tablesize = 48000;
    recindex = (+(1) : %(tablesize)) ~ *(record);
    readindex = readspeed/float( : (+ : ma.decimal) ~ _ : *(float(tablesize)) : int;

Parameter mapping

Mouth open was used for record, axis X and Y of the hand tracking for reverb parameters. Blink and smile for randomising what parameters were affected by X and Y. Axis Z controlled the reverb dampening (a simple lowpass filter cutoff).

Selecting the widget itself instead of simply the value that was being generated was a necessity, because the Faust code had to be re-compiled each time the project was opened.
def onValueChange(channel, sampleIndex, val, prev):
	widget = op('ui_container2/Looper/Record3')
	widget.par.Value0 = val

Generalised signal chain

Due to increasing complexity of the project, I am simply showing the signal chains below, while highlighting important sections with white text.


Early tests with hand tracking. The more complex visuals had to be scrapped due to issues with not enough processing power.