R5 is finally here!
After months of refactoring, coding, rebuilding and testing R5 is now ready for your saber enjoyment!What is R5?
R5 is the firmware update to the Igniter Mini(TM) platform that provides not only a better, smoother experience to the existing features that the hobby has come to know and love, but also completely new experiences that not only knock your socks off, but slice them into 1000 tiny pieces screaming in terror that are then silenced :P
The R4 firmware has been completely reworked; all aspects of the code have been refactored to provide an overall better experience with more consistent accent LEDs, crisper audio, and smoother LED effects. These changes alone are worth an upgrade; however, Master Footman would never just stop there! Once the base platform was greatly improved then all the exciting new features were added, which will be shown in the coming days...When is it available?
R5 will be available at the exciting conclusion of Igniter R5, or when the new boards arrive, whichever comes first. I'll be updating this page each day with a new episode, and after they are all complete the boards will all ship with the R5 firmware.What about the config editor?
The config editor is one of the special features for this release. In most previous releases the config editor was simply updated to provide access to the new variables needed for the new features. While this was also done, the entire editor was reworked with huge improvements in functionality. Please wait for one of the upcoming episodes to see all about it :)
The main thing to note here however is that R5 is not
backwards compatible. This means that you cannot download the new R5 editor if you are using an older version of the firmware. Because of this I will leave the previous Config Editor for igniter R4 and below on my site for those that still need this as a download.Firmware and Config Editor updates are great! But do we still get more?
Yes you can! In addition to these two improvements the DefaultFiles.zip package has been completely re-worked to not only include 9 full fonts (well 8 plus "Testing, Testing, Testing"), but it is completely setup with multiple color combinations and all the new features from R5. The goal is an amazing out-of-box experience without having to tweak anything. If buy Igniter Mini(TM) with the Z6, you will have an experience that is great, utilizing all colors and features without having to change anything. I'll post a video of the new config after the release is over.This is amazing! Are there any drawbacks?
The R5 firmware was a complete refactoring of the R4 code for a smoother experience. Everything was reworked from the audio to the LED driver to even the accent LEDs to make sure the entire experience was improved. From a feature and operation standpoint there are no disadvantages to using the new firmware.
The only real disadvantage is that in order to keep the code as streamlined as possible I have removed support for the original Igniter platform, and thus upgrades are not possible for that board. The same upgrade fee of $5.00 is possible for R4 to R5 on the Igniter Mini platform though as a send in service.
Igniter R5! The Episodes.
There is so much to R5 that Master Footman has decided to spread the release into a mini-series so that everyone could better understand the features. Without further ado, the Master himself and I will be going over those features. Each day I'll be adding the new material in-line and will post to the thread when it has been added. So let us being with Episode I!
Episode I - Attack of the Color-Changers
In a surprise effort to make color editing easier, Footman releases a new color editing mode to help the valiant regain color coordination…
...and now with this mode you can completely change your blade colors in real-time without having to take out the SD
card or even connect to your computer! Simply enter the Color Editor mode, select the font that is to be edited, choose to edit the blade, clash, blast or DualPhase(TM) color and then individually edit each color right from the saber itself!Note: if you got to this page directly please check out the overall release thread here: [a href="Igniter(TM) R5 is finally here! | Imperial Royal Arms;]http://imperialroyalarms.com/thread/3673/igniter-tm-r5-finally[/a]
Color editor is a completely new mode. To enter this mode, hold down the aux button with the kill key still inserted
, and then remove the aux key. Once the color editor welcome begins to play release the aux key.Menu
The Color editor has a menu just like Igniter. Use the aux button to cycle through each font. To select a font for editing, either press the main button (for momentary) or latch it (for latching).
When in the menu, at any time holding the aux button for 1 second will give the instructions.Editing mode
When in editing mode for a font, the following actions can be performed:
Use swings to switch between editing Blade, Clash, Blast, and DualPhase(TM) colors.
Use twists (DualPhase(TM) motion) to switch between colors Blue, Green, and Red.
Hold down the aux button to change from increasing to decreasing.
Hit aux button to increase/decrease by 10.
Perform a clash to increase/decrease by 1.
You can use these actions to edit the colors of one or all of the actions for the current font. Once all the desired edits have been made holding down (momentary) or unlatching (latching) the main button will save all the changes to disk. The next time the saber is booted the new colors will be used!Wow! This is great, are there any drawbacks?
The color editor is great as both an adjustment to fine-tune colors picked from the simulator, and for just completely changing the color altogether. What's more is that these colors can be edited right from the saber without having to hookup to a computer. This allows changing the colors anywhere, including at a con or other event where a certain color doesn't look good in a particular lighting.
The only draw back would be that it is slightly slower than editing via a computer. However, Master Footman feels that the advantages of being able to dial in the colors anywhere and the fun factor of doing it interactively with your saber is overall the best way to do it.Video
Episode I - Attack of the Color-Changers
Episode II - An Enhanced EleganceImprovements
Even with the success of R4 more improvements are needed to aid the great peacekeepers in defending the galaxy...
The R5 release was completely rebuilt to ensure that the code would perform at tip top shape before a single feature was even added. This allowed for the following improvements that are not specifically mentioned in the video but can be seen throughout all the videos and are inherent to R5:
- Improved audio for crystal clear sound even at very loud volumes of 16 for the hum and effects.
- Enhanced main blade effects, making them smoother and more consistent when switching between effects.
- Reworked accent led driver to ensure consistent spacing and smoothness for all effect types.
- Improved the Shade features to be better at color selection, and zero will completely skip that color from being selected. For BlastShade(TM) for example, if c1=0, c2=255, c3=20, even with a high BladeShade(TM) value blue colors will not be selected unless c1 is bumped up above 0.
- Allow zero (0) to be entered for extension, retraction and DualPhase(TM) sound. This will auto-calculate length based on the current sound being played, allowing for the effect to look good with varying length sounds.
After these base improvements were made, the following improvements were added to the release as shown in the video:1. Menu improvements
Not only has the boot speed been increased dramatically, but also the menu is enhanced to always play the current sound font to allow remembering of the current font (and to prevent accidently advancement). Further, pressing the main button (or latching and unlatching if using a latching switch) will immediately select the current font.2. Linear mode
Fonts can be selected to be linear or random. Linear will play all the sounds in a row, looping through each one. This works especially well for FX as the quotes can be played in the order that they are intended to play!
In linear mode, you can select the three groups that can be linear: a. Hums/Extension/Retraction; b. FX; c. All other actions. Once a group is on the counts are maintained independently; that means that if you do 3 swings and then a clash with Actions set as linear, swng01.wav, swng02.wav, swng03.wav and clsh01.wav will be played in that order. This allows an easy way to logically turn on/off the linear mode while still maintaining independence between each different actions.
Linear mode is especially great for demoing purposes of fonts as it is easy to "show" all the different sounds, and is the best for FX when using quotes as they can be played back in the correct order as seen on the big screen!3. Lockup Improvements
Now the color of the lockup can mirror either the clash color or the blade color. Matching the blade color optimizes the EzLockup(TM) functionality of Igniter Mini(TM) that was actually introduced in R1; this is the preferred way to do the lockup.4. EzMute(TM)
Now in R5 you can do a simple mute of the saber by holding down the Aux button and pressing the main button within one second! The saber's lights and accent LEDs work as normal, but no sound is playing. This is great for testing colors without waking up the wife, kids and neighbors.Movie
Episode II - An Enhanced Elegance
Episode III - A New Editor
It is a time of turmoil for the Igniter(TM) platform. In an effort to streamline the code, the mastermind (and borderline loony) Naigon has changed not only all the variable names in the config files, but has added a new config file and has even moved the location of all the .wav files :( Just when all hope seemed lost for those brave saber users, a savior comes in... welcome Igniter R5 config editor.
Igniter R5 config editor will auto-fix all of the above issues and more specifically, it will:
1. Convert any R4 config to R5 just by opening that config.
2. Move the .wav files into the appropriate places automatically.
3. Auto-generate the new wav file required for R5.
4. Auto detect the number of .wav files for a particular sound bank, and update the config with the correct number.
5. Auto detect the total number of fonts, and update the config.
Not only that, but #2-5 above will also happen when switching away from the app and switching back
! This means that if you have the Config Editor open, go to disk and change some stuff and then come back to the program it will auto-scan the font at that time and make the fixes. No more worrying about if you need to re-open the file as you can do everything in one easy step. Please watch the video below for more details on that.
Conversion of configs from R4 to R5 is automatic, even though there are a lot of changes under the hood.There's too many of them!
In a world where new sound fonts are being created every day, and fonts becoming larger and larger navigating and using them is becoming like targeting womprats without a targeting computer. And now with Igniter's ability to support 16 fonts, more help is needed. Again our hero Igniter Config Editor is here to manage them all! Many new wav management features have been added to the config editor that help to get the best audio experience from the fonts. The features added are:
1. Add new wavs into existing fonts
2. Convert functionality to convert wavs to be in the correct format that Igniter Mini(TM) supports.
3. Apply a high-pass filter to files to eliminate swings and other sounds from sounding muddled with TruMix(TM).
1. Add new wavs into existing fonts
This feature allows the full potential of TruMix(TM) to be experienced with ease. Because Igniter Mini(TM) (and Igniter, Spark) are the only boards on the market to support real-time mixing of the hum + acution sounds, it is possible to add sounds from other fonts to the current font to get new and unique fonts. However, this used to require manually renaming and moving the file. Now with our hero the R5 Config Editor, it is as simple as going to edit->Add Wavs, and then selecting the wavs that are desired to be added into the current font. Just select them and hit okay, and the files will be auto moved and even auto numbered to work with the new font, along with the number of fonts being updated. It is a complete solution in one easy step!
Adding wavs to expand an existing font by using sounds from other fonts is now built-in to the app. This allows the easiest and best potential of using the TruMix(TM) technology of Igniter Mini(TM)
You can even drag and drop wavs right into the Igniter window when a font is opened to have it do this for you. This allows directly manipulating the file system, where the Config Editor is completely in-sync with the font folder structure that it is currently working on.
Another way to add wavs is a simple drag and drop from the file system.
This feature also works for creating a new font from disk. Simply copy the font folder, delete all the wav files, and then move the new .wav files into that font. Upon switching back to the Config Editor everything will be moved and named appropriately!
2. Convert functionality
This one is for all the font makers out there :) For those that have dealt with using Audacity or similar programs that add those pesky to remove headers into the .wav file that make the font not work on Igniter, then this feature is for you! Simply select all the wavs for a font and then click file->Convert Wavs and those headers will be auto-removed! Not only this, but the files will be down sampled from 44100Hz to 22050Hz and will be converted from stereo to mono as well! This works for all wavs, not just wavs for a font so font makers can use this for making fonts of other board manufacturers that use 22050Hz, mono 16bit sounds. I only ask that if you are using the config editor for this sole purpose that you kindly make the $2.00 donation for continued development.
3. High-Pass filtering
Similar to the convert functionality, going to File->Apply High-Pass will apply a 300Hz High-pass filter to the selected files. This is super useful for fonts where the hum + swings together are "muddled" and the swings are not cutting through the mix well. Simply apply the filter to the swings and the mix should sound much better.Video
Episode III - A New Editor
Episode IV here:Igniter R5! Episode IV - Return of the Phase
Thanks for looking, Godspeed, and MTFBWY!