Using The Leap Motion To Control AU/VST effects

This video, via Geert Bevin, explores using the Leap Motion spatial controller with AU/VST effects. 

The Leap is a new controller, designed to translate your gestures and movement into computer control. 

Technical details:

This afternoon I took a few hours to write an EigenD ( agent for the Leap ( Currently it only supports sending out the x, y and z axis of two palms relative to the Leap device itself. The API is very intuitive and it shouldn’t take long to gradually add support for hand directions and fingers, I wanted to first play around with it for a while though.

In this experiment I control two effects in Native Instruments’ Guitar Rig 5. It’s processing one of my songs that’s playing from iTunes and you can hear the recorded result. I did have to manually align the audio to the video, so that might not be perfect.

This developer version of the Leap device supports a little bit less range and a restricted field of view, which is why it’s sometimes missing some detection at natural boundaries. The production versions will not suffer from this.

The song is ‘Never Lose’ from my album ‘Dream Like a Tree’:

11 thoughts on “Using The Leap Motion To Control AU/VST effects

    1. Delarue

      This is way more precise than the D-Beam and senses position precisely in three directions. You might want to read up on it!

  1. Great stuff. I’ve always wondered how Leap could be integrated into a studio setup.
    REALLY not a fan of that song thats playing though.

    1. I don’t think anybody’s claiming that it’s a replacement for keyboard and mouse in every context, but there are some things that would work better with gestures (outside of the performance-style control demonstrated here). In Ableton for example, there’s a lot of tangibility with warping and moving chunks of clips around in arrangement view. I think the leap would augment that experience, while the setup of plugins would still be done by hand.

    2. That’s almost like saying “Flutes are cool, but I can’t be arsed to hold one up for a whole performance”.

      It functions just fine as a performance controller. I don’t think anybody claims that it’ll replace the mouse (in much the same way that the mouse didn’t replace the keyboard).

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