Couple of days ago I wonted to made new music video for my YouTube channel using the Adobe After Effects CS4 and because just classical image with some music in the background is not so interesting for the viewers I wonted to add an Audio Spectrum effect. After searching couple of good online tutorials I actually saw that making an Audio Spectrum is not so hard at all and now I wont to share my new knowledge with all of you about how to make it.
IMPORTANT : Before start of this tutorial you should install some of the Adobe After Effects versions by buying it (or try) in online store. All informations you can find on Adobe official website : www.adobe.com
Step 1 : Open Adobe After Effects (any version from CS3 up to CS6 will work for this tutorial) and on the menu at the top of the program chose Composition > New Composition... When Composition Settings is open, set the values which you wont and click on OK (for YouTube video I usually choosing HDTV 1080 but you can select something else)
Step 2 : Now composition is fixed and it is time to put your music and picture files together before you add an Audio Spectrum effect. To add files from your PC make right click under the Composition layer (in my case it has a name Comp1) then select Import > File... and chose your music/photo files that you wont to add in video.
Step 3 : For this tutorial like simple examples I will add just two files. Picture (.jpg) file will have name Random Picture, and music (.mp3) file will have name Random Music. I will drag and drop those two files on the timeline at the bottom of the screen and spread picture file to fit with music file if it is necessary (of course you will manage it by yourself how do you like).
Step 4 : When you fit pictures and music on the timeline then you should add some special effects. To add Audio Spectrum effect, first select picture file on the timeline where you wont to add your new effect and then at the top of the program chose Effect > Generate > Audio Spectrum.
Step 5 : Now Audio Spectrum settings are open and there is three important things that you should do in order to adjust it to work. First you need to connect your Audio Spectrum with some music file because otherwise it will not work. You can made connection by clicking on the Audio Layer option changing it from None to your layer music file (in my case that file is Random Music.mp3). Next thing is to set up your Start & End Points (which representing positions that Audio Spectrum will have at your video) Start & End Frequencies (it is up to you to dill with numbers because Frequencies depends on song), Frequencies Bands (larger number is usually better) etc... Last but very important thing is to check Composite on Original because than color around the Audio Spectrum will be transparent.