This is a more or less fully inclusive list of the differences between QLab 5 and QLab 4. For changes made after the initial release of 5.0, check out the change log.
QLab 5 allows multiple people on separate Macs to collaborate on a workspace, live and in realtime, on a local network.
Autosave prevents accidental loss of work in the event of a crash or power outage. No guarantees are made against data loss due to user error, acts of God, or most hauntings.
As part of Autosave, QLab 5 optionally saves a snapshot of your workspace every time you save, allowing you to easily access earlier versions of your work.
Group cues have a new Playlist mode that allows you to create sequential playlists which advance automatically or manually with optional crossfading, shuffling, and looping.
The Audition Window has been replaced by a set of audition-related tools:
QLab 5 uses macOS Dark Mode so that dialogue boxes, title bars, and other window “chrome” look more consistent with the rest of QLab’s interface.
Cue carts have received a variety of updates:
Cue colors can be set to appear all the time, only before the cue has played, or only after the cue has played, making it easier for you to use color to mark cues as “unplayed” or “played.”
A new file search tool makes it easier to reconnect broken cues to their missing file targets, for example after moving a workspace to a new computer or reorganizing media while QLab is not running.
Setting cues’ targets by drag and drop now works bi-directionally: you can drag the acting cue onto its target cue, or drag the target cue onto the acting cue. If both cues could potentially be targets of each other, the dragged cue is set as the target of the cue it’s dropped onto.
Related but separate, dragging cues onto Group cues now sets the Group cue as the target of the dragged cues, instead of potentially re-targeting all the child cues of that Group cue.
Right-clicking (or clicking with the control key held down) on cues in the cue list or on controls in the inspector now brings up a contextual menu which gives you quick access to relevant actions and extensive in-line help text with links to the relevant section of the QLab manual online.
The Warnings tab of the Workspace Status window has been comprehensively updated to give you much more and much better information about broken cues as well as non-breaking warnings such as workspace settings which are in need of attention.
Workspace Settings can now be exported to a settings file, imported from a settings file, imported from other open workspaces, and drag-and-dropped between workspaces.
The “linear” fade curve type can now be edited, allowing sharp-cornered multi-step fade curves.
Fade cues in “absolute” mode will now override and clear out any previously applied changes made by Fade cues in “relative” mode.
Load cues as well as OSC and AppleScript commands that involve loading, can now use negative numbers to load backwards from the end time of their targets, just like the Load to Time tool.
Audio patches are now called audio output patches, and they have been overhauled in QLab 5 with the following improvements:
Mic cues now use separate audio input patches to designate the device they use for input. This lets you use separate audio input and output devices easily, without requiring you to set up an aggregate audio device. Audio input patches can be reordered, copied and pasted within a workspace and between workspaces, drag-and-dropped into the Finder to create a settings document, and drag-and-dropped to copy them into the audio settings of other workspaces.
Audio cues (and
Video cues) can be set to a play count of
0; zero-count slices are seamlessly skipped during playback.
You can now visually edit the start and end times of multiple selected cues by dragging the start time and end time handles in the Time & Loops tab of the inspector.
Audio effect meters now work in all contexts, not just on outputs.
The video rendering engine has been completely rewritten using the Metal framework, Apple’s modern and fully up-to-date video system. Come for the performance improvements, stay for the longevity.
QLab 5 adds per-cue blend modes, allowing you to composite cues in nearly limitless combinations.
QLab natively supports NDI 5 for both video input and output. QLab also supports NDI audio input and output.
Camera cues contain an embedded Mic cue, allowing you to use live audio alongside live video.
QLab can display monitor windows for every video input and output so that you can keep tabs on all your visual elements live and in realtime.
Video, Camera, and Text cues can now use multiple video effects simultaneously. The list of available video effects has grown, too, thanks to the shift to Metal, and the amount of processing power needed for video effects (especially blurs) has been nicely reduced.
QLab now supports an unlimited number of video input patches in a workspace. Video input patches can be reordered, copied and pasted within a workspace and between workspaces, drag-and-dropped into the Finder to create a settings document, and drag-and-dropped to copy them into the video settings of other workspaces.
Video cues (and
Audio cues) can be set to a play count of
0; zero-count slices are seamlessly skipped during playback.
Masks and video surface geometry now happen “upstream” of Syphon outputs, allowing you to send more elaborately crafted video feeds to Syphon-receiving clients.
Video, Camera, and Text cues now have an integrated crop attribute for quick and easy trimming.
The Light Dashboard’s new Audition tab lets you audition Light cues, letting you view level changes without actually changing the live levels being output to your lighting system.
QLab 5 ships with instrument definitions for over 1400 different fixtures from 61 manufacturers, including fixtures from the following manufacturers new to QLab:
Light commands can now be cut, copied, and pasted when they are selected in slider mode in the Levels tab of the Light cue inspector.
Cues set to trigger from timecode can now start in the middle of the cue based on incoming timecode, rather than just at the beginning of the cue, and will skip ahead or back in response to timecode skipping ahead or back. Additionally, Lists and Carts set to receive timecode can optionally be set to pause or stop their timecode-triggered cues when incoming timecode stops, with optional freewheeling up to two seconds.
The Network cue has been substantially revamped and now includes support for directly controlling a number of OSC-controllable programs and devices with a minimum of fuss and complexity. The available modes for the Network cue in QLab 5.0 are:
The Network cue also supports both TCP and UDP transport, as well as OSC 1.1 argument types
When live fade preview is switched on, Network cues in 2D fade mode now transmit their message as you drag the control dot around. This should make it easier to experiment with 2D network fades.
Also, 2D fade curve editing has been improved.
Network patches can be reordered, copied and pasted within a workspace and between workspaces, drag-and-dropped into the Finder to create a settings document, and drag-and-dropped to copy them into the Network settings of other workspaces.
QLab now supports an unlimited number of MIDI patches in a workspace. MIDI patches can be reordered, copied and pasted within a workspace and between workspaces, drag-and-dropped into the Finder to create a settings document, and drag-and-dropped to copy them into the MIDI settings of other workspaces.
MIDI cues, MIDI File cues, and Timecode cues using MTC now all use the same set of patches.
You can now customize the port numbers that workspaces use to receive OSC messages and plain text messages.
Workspaces can have multiple OSC passcodes, each with their own set of access permissions.
Custom OSC remote control commands are now compatible with workspaces that use OSC passcodes.
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