Sync a QLC+ Show timeline as a slave to Ableton Live's timeline via MTC?

The issues found when using the Show Manager panel
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Carpoolparty
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Sync a QLC+ Show timeline as a slave to Ableton Live's timeline via MTC?

Post by Carpoolparty » Fri Apr 22, 2016 12:25 pm

Alright, I'm stumped. I've tried searching everywhere, there are few tutorials on the Show editor functionality, let alone wether or not it has the capability of MIDI sync. I am fairly new to QLC+ plus, but I've been searching for days on how to do this if I can do this. Here's what I'm wanting to do:

I'm running on a MacBook Pro. Just like how I can send MTC out of Ableton Live via IAC Driver to Logic Pro and run it as a slave to Ableton so the timelines sync up, I want to know, is there any way I can run the QLC+ Show timeline as a slave to Ableton Live so that when I play Ableton Live's timeline, QLC+ follows it.

So basically: ABLETON LIVE (Master) >MTC> QLC+ SHOW (Slave)

I'm trying to sync up a simple light show to my music, and can't figure out how to do it with QLC+. I've gotten as far as to get QLC+ to recognize IAC and the MTC Pulse from Ableton, I see a little joystick pulsing every time I play Ableton. So I mean QLC+ is receiving the MIDI information, but I don't know where to go from there. Does the show editor not have the capability to sync up via MIDI Time Code?

Thanks for reading. I really want to know so I can have a dynamic light show with as little technical impact as possible.

plugz
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Re: Sync a QLC+ Show timeline as a slave to Ableton Live's timeline via MTC?

Post by plugz » Fri Apr 22, 2016 1:02 pm

Hello,

qlcplus.org/docs/midiplugin.html
Starting from version 4.5.0, QLC+ supports the MIDI beat clock
Not to be confused with the MIDI timecode, the MIDI beat clock is a useful signal to sync BPM-based devices such as a drum machine with your lights controlled by QLC+.
As of now, I don't think QLC+ supports midi time code.

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mcallegari
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Re: Sync a QLC+ Show timeline as a slave to Ableton Live's timeline via MTC?

Post by mcallegari » Sat Apr 23, 2016 4:02 pm

QLC+ clock doesn't work as a slave to an external clock.
Theoretically it could be implemented but I can't even imagine how many issues it can create.

As David says, for now there is only MIDI beat clock, basically to trigger QLC+ functions to start/stop.
Also, a MIDI clock (or a JACK clock) would work only for Shows...very large shows I'd say !
The virtual console would then become quite useless.

As you can understand the effort it massive and the usage case is not a priority at the moment.

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nedmech
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Re: Sync a QLC+ Show timeline as a slave to Ableton Live's timeline via MTC?

Post by nedmech » Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:06 am

If you're playing your audio back from Ableton, why not create a parallel MIDI track to your audio and use that to send MIDI signals to the QLC+ virtual console instead of using a Show timeline? You would have to create buttons on the virtual console for each scene/efx/chaser/etc. and then assign a MIDI input for each button so it can trigger, but then you can work in Ableton to create your synchronized lighting triggers with your audio, and the triggers should follow along even if you change the tempo. You just need a way to get MIDI from Ableton into QLC+. If you're on a MAC (I'm not that familiar with them), there should be options for setting up virtual MIDI IO devices. If you're on a PC, I've used rtpMIDI (that emulates a MAC network MIDI setup) to make virtual MIDI devices.

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mcallegari
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Re: Sync a QLC+ Show timeline as a slave to Ableton Live's timeline via MTC?

Post by mcallegari » Mon Apr 25, 2016 7:46 am

The MTC usage makes perfect sense but it is something related to DAWs, and QLC+ is not a DAW, even if the Show Manager might give you that impression.

Dedicated DAWs implement a bunch of tricks to perform contents seek/skip with a millisecond precision, at the cost of a large memory consumption, which QLC+ avoids.
They usually create offline maps of audio/video files for fast and precise seek, so you can playback from any point in time with a perfect precision.
When I added audio/video support, I didn't go that way cause of the existing QLC clock granularity, which is ruled by the DMX requirements: 44Hz

I could still make up my mind how to support such feature in QLC+ 5, but I doubt we will be able to get a DAW precision anyway

Carpoolparty
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Re: Sync a QLC+ Show timeline as a slave to Ableton Live's timeline via MTC?

Post by Carpoolparty » Tue Apr 26, 2016 2:22 pm

EDIT: Scratch that. I just found it. Thanks again everyone for your help! Really appreciated it! And thanks for your patience, I am a music producer, so that's the angle I approached my light show from. :D

ORIGINAL POST:
Ah ok. I think I'm getting what u guys are saying. Thanks again for all the replies. I've decided to go with nedmech's solution, I'm now working on getting the master clock of QLC+ to the right Hz so my lights are in sync. I'm using a USB uDMX thumb drive, like the $25 one. I thought I set the Hz to 30Hz manually in the QLC+ preferences, but I still don't seem to have it working quite right... Should I just look around some more and close this thread or does anyone wanna answer that here?

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