Music VU Visualizer Widgets

 

Music VU gives you beautiful and dynamic level, wave, and spectrum displays for your music. Works with any music player on your phone or tablet. You can choose from a variety of meters and music visualizers and place them anywhere on your home screen. Change colors, mix them up, resize/enlarge (Android 3.1 & later), or use more than one side-by-side for greater impact. To find the spectrum, waveform, and VU level meters go into your apps list “Widgets” section and look for widgets named “Music VU”. On some Android versions long-press an empty part of your home screen.

 

All segmented meters feature classic digital styling and a high-resolution first meter segment. In addition, specialty spectrum analyzer and waveform displays give you unique new ways to visualize your music. Premium spectrum and waveform displays are free for a 7 day trial period, after which they must be unlocked through a Google Play purchase. VU level meters are always free. Music VU shows accurate stereo levels when used with supported music players like the SoundWire audio streaming app.

 

To resize a visualizer widget, long-press then release. Adjust any of the four resize handles which appear. To enlarge there must be empty space on that side of the widget. To make visualizers big, resize in both directions – widgets maintain their shape (aspect ratio). Requires Android 3.1 or later.

 

This is an advanced widget app which uses special techniques to update quickly. Due to limitations in the way Android widgets work you should have a relatively fast phone or tablet to get the full benefit of Music VU’s dynamic updating visualizers. To minimize CPU and battery usage Music VU is not active unless your screen is on and music is playing.

 

Available Visualizers

Music VU Visualizer widgets are shown below in the default color scheme, which may be changed through settings. Avoid using too many widgets at the same time if you notice performance problems.

 

 

Circular Sweep 1 x 1: A beautiful and unique circular concentric level meter with 51 segments that sweep continuously between colors. The outer ring is the left channel and the inner ring is the right channel when stereo data is available.

 

Circular Wave 1 x 1: Shows your music as pulsating circular audio waveforms with dynamically changing colors representing VU levels. The outer ring is the left channel and the inner ring is the right channel when stereo data is available. (Premium visualizer)

Spectrum Bars 2 x 1: A segmented spectrum analyzer with 7, 10, or 20 channels (bars), configurable in settings. Shows the realtime frequency content of your music. Frequencies range from 150 Hz on the far left to 5000 Hz on the far right. (Premium visualizer)

Spectrum Graph 2 x 1: A colored spectrogram display similar to those in professional audio applications. Shows the detailed frequency content of your music over time. Conveys a lot of information in a small space. (Premium visualizer)

Spiral Wave 1 x 1: Shows your music as colorful rotating spiral waveforms. Over time “old” waves spin into the center and disappear. The rotation speed is configurable in settings. (Premium visualizer)

Circular 1 x 1: A circular concentric level meter with 12 segments and three discrete colors. This is the most performance-efficient Music VU meter. Due to the relatively small number of segments this meter does not have a peak indicator.

Vertical 1 x 2: A classic vertical double-height level meter with 18 segments and three discrete colors. Large and very easy to read.

Vertical Sweep 1 x 1: A compact vertical level meter with 30 segments that sweep continuously between colors. Looks great resized (enlarged).

 

Horizontal Sweep 2 x 1: A horizontal level meter with 27 segments that sweep continuously between colors.

 

 

Music VU Settings

Touch any visualizer to open the Music VU settings screen, where you can set the following appearance and visualizer behaviour options.

 

Unlock: Select this to unlock the premium meters (spectrum and waveform visualizers) through a Google Play purchase.

 

Meter on switch: Uncheck to turn all meters and visualizers off when not needed. May be used to save power, e.g. your battery is low. Keep this switch on (checked) for normal use. Note that Music VU automatically turns off all meters and visualizers when the screen is off or when no music is playing.

 

Color preferences: This collection of menus lets you individually customize the colors of any meter or visualizer (except spectrum graph). Color settings can be exported to files on your SD card to save them for later use or copy between specific meters. Six preset color schemes are available to quickly update all meter and visualizer colors.

 

Meter background transparency: Select the transparency amount for the meter background from 0% to 100%. To make the background invisible use 100%. Meters look best against a dark background, if your home screen uses light colors and you have trouble seeing the meters/visualizers then try values under 50%.

 

Grey segment transparency: Select the transparency amount for grey (unlit) meter segments from 0% to 100%. Values over 80% can make the grey segments invisible, which means the entire meter may become invisible if the background is also transparent and music is not playing.

 

Peak indicator: Show or hide the peak indicator line.

Spectrum meter channels: Choose 7, 10, or 20 channels (vertical bars) for segmented spectrum analyzers.

 

Meter update rate: This option lets you change the update rate of all meters/visualizers (high, normal, low, very low). Reduce the update rate by one step if you experience performance problems with your phone/tablet.

 

Spiral waveform rotation speed: Select the rotation speed of spiral waveform visualizers from 1 to 4, where 1 is slowest and 4 is fastest.

 

Use Decibel (dB) scale: Controls whether Music VU level meters respond logarithmically, like a real VU meter, or linearly. Unselecting this option can make the meters appear to have more movement. When this option is on the top middle-color segment of three-color level meters indicates -6 dB. Does not affect spectrum displays.

 

Apply volume: Select this option to reduce meter levels based on your current media volume setting when using SoundWire or another supported music player. Unselect to show the actual music level ignoring volume. Volume is always applied to meter levels when not using SoundWire or another supported music player, as if this option is always on (Android limitation). Does not affect spectrum displays.

 

Enable volume scaling: (Android 4.1+) If spectrum, waveform, or level meters read too low when your media volume is not at maximum turn this option on to normalize levels and increase meter readings (on by default). Turn this option off for best meter accuracy. This option has no effect on level meters when using stereo data from SoundWire or another supported music player – turn off “Apply volume” instead.

 

Meter touch action: This option appears if you have the GeorgieLabs SoundWire app. Select this option to make touch (single-click) on any meter or visualizer switch to SoundWire. Unselect to make touch (single-click) open the Music VU settings screen. When this option is on double-click opens the settings screen.

 

Possible Issues

Finding Widgets: To find the Music VU widgets go into your apps list “Widgets” section and look for widgets named “Music VU”. On some Android versions you need to long-press an empty part of your home screen and select “Widgets” from the menu. If you can't find the widgets right after installing the app try restarting your phone.

Performance: If you notice performance problems with your home screen like slow or incomplete icon draws, long reaction times, or irregular widget updates then you should reduce the number of Music VU widgets. On slower devices you should use fewer widgets, or reduce the meter update rate in settings. You may still notice occasional irregular or slow updates since performance depends largely on the responsiveness of your Android device and launcher (home) app. If you have problems related to your launcher try a different launcher app. If you regularly switch between different launchers then try removing Music VU widgets from the unused launcher before switching.

 

Can’t resize widgets: If you’re unable to resize Music VU widgets and your Android version is 3.1 or later, your launcher (home) app may not support widget resizing. In this case try another launcher app.

 

Stuck or unresponsive meters: Try rebooting your phone. If you’ve just upgraded Music VU try removing unresponsive widgets and add them again from the widget list. If this doesn’t work then uninstall and reinstall the app – save (export) your colors first if needed. On some newer phones like recent Samsung and Nexus models the meters may not respond properly. These phones have mistakes in their audio firmware which prevent all third-party visualizers like Music VU from capturing audio information. The problem sometimes affects only certain music players because there are different ways to access the audio firmware. You may find that Music VU works with the Google Play Music app, or when listening over Bluetooth.

 

Music VU Integration Info for Developers

If you’re an Android music app developer and would like to have your app send stereo meter data to Music VU only a few lines of code are needed. Please email GeorgieLabs at the address below to receive implementation details.

 

User Feedback

Please rate the app and submit comments on Google Play to let us know what you think of Music VU. If you have a question or bug report send email to musicvu@georgielabs.net

If reporting a problem please include your phone model and Android version.

Go to the GeorgieLabs main page.

 

© 2013-2016 Georg Feil and GeorgieLabs ver 1.8.1