Rumor says new iTunes visualizer will be gorgeous Magnetosphere

I know I was pretty snarky about one of iTunes 8′s toted features — a new visualizer, for god’s sake — but if the rumors are true and Apple’s snapped up artist Robert Hodgins’ formerly available iTunes plugin Magnetosphere, I may turn on my visualizing options for the first time since my 200MHz Winamp days. It really does look quite lovely.

Rumor: New Visualizer in iTunes 8 to be Robert Hodgins’ Magnetosphere [TUAW]

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15 Responses to Rumor says new iTunes visualizer will be gorgeous Magnetosphere

  1. holtt says:

    I went and bought the track – dunno if it got a BB boost but it’s the hottest track on the album on iTunes.

    Watching that visualizer movie, it really reminds me of an old screen saver called Voodoo Lights. Coolest screen saver ever IMO, written by a guy in Portugal. It was I think one of my first, “By god this author wants $15 for this and it’s the coolest thing I’ve ever seen, so I’m paying for it!” purchases.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I’ve been using magnetosphere already, but often, when Apple incorporates a plug in into the visualizer, they tweak it considerably for more fancy, or at least, for swapping up its variables more often.

    But as to TechonGeeks point; it seems no one has really made a decent sound organ for iTunes visualizer where certain frequencies, and the stereo image of such, are represented as certain colors, objects or variables that change with those frequency and spatial characteristics in the sound file.

    There are plenty of graphic equazlizers and perhaps even some in stereo, so it cannot be that difficult.

    Once you get the image hooked to the Sound in some mean other than a merged waveform, then you can add the fancy visual tricks. And I would use visualizer more, if it actually “Visualized” the music on frequency and balance, rather than just putting on a random volume based throbbing light show.

    It appears anyway, that a lot of the visualizers are tuned to recognize some sort of measure in the music, and will shift every four measures, which falls in with a lot of pop music structure. Thats better than it used to be.

  3. dculberson says:

    Milkdrop is still the unquestionable KING of visualizations. Way beyond any visualization I’ve seen on iTunes or Windows Media Player.

  4. Thinkerer says:

    Magnetosphere is flat out gorgeous — it’s worth watching with the sound turned down.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Still no MilkDrop.

  6. peach3s says:

    @Searconflex: don’t feel bad, I didn’t know what song it was either. For the curious, the information is below:

    Artist: Tosca
    Album: Sazuki (2000)
    Song: Sazuki (Track 2)

  7. searconflex says:

    What track is that?

  8. searconflex says:

    fuck, I’m an idiot.

  9. holtt says:

    Is that actually being driven off the music, or was the music a nice overlay for an existing video?

  10. CD says:

    In my opinion, G-Force is very good…I believe it is done by the same person/group who did the original iTunes visuals…it is much more elaborate than its predecessor. Has a windows version too (sorry, no linux I don’t think).

  11. technogeek says:

    My tests for a “visualizer” are:

    a) Does it actually visualize the music? That is, is it really responding to the pitch-filtered envelopes of the music, or is it just a sufficiently active random graphic that it appears to do so? Some randomness is fine, but if it doesn’t track the input reliably and predictably it isn’t a visualizer. (Ideally, you should get a recognizable variation on the same set of visual themes each time you play the same track…)

    b) Does it have staying power as visual art? Easiest test for this is to try watching it with the sound turned off. If you’re still hooked after five minutes of nothing but the pretty lights, you’ll probably still be interested in it after you’ve seen it on 20 songs. If your reaction is “nice, but it’s getting boring; what else can we do”, then you’re probably going to get bored of it with music too.

    I like light-shows, when they’re done well. I like wallpaper programs, when they’re done well. Making the former act as the latter without a human behind the controls is NOT a trivial task.

  12. zikman says:

    this visualizer plugin wasn’t available for download from their site for ages. I remember trying to redownload it back when I restored my macbook, but they had some jazz up about not offering it anymore or working on another version or something.

  13. O_P says:

    Does anyone remember Sonique?
    It had the best visuals of any audio player I had ever seen at the time, and some of it’s visuals still look better than anything out there now.

    Does anyone know if you can get an itunes plugin that will play Sonique visuals?

  14. Pete says:

    Holtt – yes, that is actually being driven by the music. I’ve had this visualizer in the past, and it is fantastic.

  15. gobo says:

    This is the first I’ve seen Magnetosphere, but it’s so stunning visually that I can see this being the new signature look for iTunes commercials for awhile.

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