The Interactive & Immersive HQ

TouchDesigner 2022 Release!

With the new 2022 release of TouchDesigner there are a TON of amazing new features that developers and artists are excited to dive into. But as with any new release of this size, it can feel overwhelming on what to dive into first and how to approach some of these new features. Over the past few months, we’ve released a ton of content covering these new features and this post gives you the fastest access to diving into all of the best new features!

VSTs

Whenever I remembered the VSTs are now in TouchDesigner, I hear Carnima Burana’s O Fortuna start playing in my head. This is a huge inclusion to TouchDesigner. The ability to load any VST3 (and VST2 with a slight workaround) brings a whole new depth to the type of audio work you can do in TouchDesigner. This could be focused on generating soundscapes with your favourite synths or processing and analyzing live sound in whole new ways directly in TouchDesigner.

Here are some fantastic resources to accelerator your VST explorations. First off, you might not have any VSTs, so this post gets you into the best free VSTs:

If you’re new to VSTs, installing them can also be a bit tricky, and this post walks you through that process:

You’ll likely immediately want to load up a synth and start playing it. While this isn’t hard, it does take a slight bit of Python we cover in this video:

And as you’re creating more generative and procedural systems, this tutorial created by Jack builds a simple step sequencer inside of TouchDesigner using VSTs:

Vulkan + Comments

The new Vulkan rendering engine is huge. In the release rundowns later on the page we dive into more about Vulkan means for the future of TouchDesigner, but it’s safe to say it’s amazing. Along with that huge addition comes to long-requested feature of comments in the network!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can’t add enough exclamation marks for comments. If you’d like to get an overview of Vulkan and how to immediately dive into using comments, this video below provides a quick overview of both:

Power user additions

On top of the features we’ve talked about so far, there are a handful of power user features added recently. These include the ability to have Timer CHOPs run forever, perform much more friendly searching in a project, and adding easy hover-over help boxes for custom parameters. There is also a new syntax highlighting built right into the Text DAT that can help folks who are either getting into Python or are needing to edit their code on a remote machine that might not have their favourite code editor installed. These are covered in the posts below:

Text COMP

The new Text COMP might seem like a small addition, but it is likely going to change a lot of existing pipelines when it comes to rendering text to the screen. This is doubly true especially for UIs that need to scale to different screen sizes, window sizes, resolutions, or DPI settings. Supporting all these options previously meant a lot of additional coding to keep resolutions and layouts dynamic, but a lot of this can be handled automatically for you now. If you want to dive into the Text COMP, this blog post gets you running quickly and easily:

General overviews

There’s also a ton of other features that have come out in this release. For these I recommend doing a quick skim of our Release Rundowns, that cover in quick details what are the top things you should know for these last handful of releases, which add up to this stable 2022 release. These include knowing about the new Apple Silicon support (hooray for M1 users!), the change to a Vulkan-based rendering backend, which SDKs have been updated for your favourite hardwares, and more.

Official release notes

To dive even further into the new features, here are links to the official post from Derivative on the new build as well as the full release notes:

https://derivative.ca/community-post/2022-official-update/66222

https://docs.derivative.ca/Release_Notes/2022.20000

Wrap up

This is another amazing release from the Derivative team. If you think adding all the new features was a tough job, imagine adding all these new features while at the same time completing gutting and replacing the rendering engine. You won’t find developers elsewhere who will take on that challenge the same way Derivative does. Congrats to all involved and we look forward to seeing what all your artists and developers out there build with these amazing new features!