Quartz Composer has been great! We used it for years — and we're designing Vuo to do more. Vuo is rapidly adding functionality (see our roadmap for details), and here are some things that you can do that aren't possible with Quartz Composer:


  • has step-by-step documentation and tutorial videos
  • exports your compositions to stand-alone apps with a single click (no need to learn how to use Xcode just to make your composition into an app)
  • exports your compositions to stand-alone movies, with optional high-quality spatial supersampling (antialiasing) and temporal supersampling (motion blur) (Pro)
  • has built-in support (no plugins needed) for many devices and protocols, including:
    • Leap Motion
    • Kinect
    • Serial I/O
    • Syphon
    • Art-Net DMX
  • has built-in support for reading barcodes in images
  • has built-in support for playing Hap movies
  • has built-in 3D perspective, orthographic, stereoscopic (Pro), and fisheye (Pro) cameras, with variable field of view, and which can easily follow objects through the scene (no trigonometry required; we took care of that for you)
  • has built-in 3D spotlights, which can either point in a specified direction, or point toward a specified object
  • has built-in support for rendering to multiple windows — QC can only output to a single window (unless you write a plugin)
  • has built-in support for loading a wide variety of 3D mesh formats — you can easily use 3D objects others have shared
  • has built-in support for loading, manipulating, and saving XML, JSON, CSV, and TSV data
  • has built-in support for boolean operations on 3D objects (Pro)
  • has built-in support for liquid image resizing (Pro)
  • has built-in support for warping images using projection meshes (Pro)
  • has built-in support for 16bpc (64bpp) and 32bpc (128bpp) images (QC is limited to 8bpc (32bpp))
  • has built-in support for multisampling, whether rendering to a window or rendering to an image
  • has built-in parametric 3D mesh generation — you can use math equations to make 3D objects
  • has built-in phase-accurate wave generator — you can make things move smoothly, even if you change the speed
  • has built-in Simplex noise generation — you can make things move naturalistically
  • has a modern shader-based OpenGL implementation (instead of QC's outdated immediate-mode OpenGL implementation) — giving you better performance (and paving the way for eventual mobile device support)
  • has a real 3D scenegraph with hierarchical transformations — you can build complex 3D scenes that behave realistically
  • has the ability to make any node synchronous (wait for results) or asynchronous (do it in the background) — giving you the flexibility to decide how you want your composition to work
  • can make nodes execute only when you want them to execute (instead of every time a parameter changes, like in QC) — your composition wastes less time and energy
  • compiles code (instead of continually interpreting it) — you experience faster execution
  • automatically generates parallel code — your composition takes advantage of your computer's multiple processors
  • has a first-class API for creating nodes and port types — you have full, documented support for making nodes and port types, without having to resort to the undocumented private API (like in QC)
  • includes source code for the compiler, and core nodes and types — you can learn how it works, make improvements, and have security that you'll still be able to use your compositions in the long term

Team Vuo:

  • values its users' input, and seeks it out to help chart Vuo's development direction
  • has a dedicated development team working many hours every week to improve Vuo
  • has a support team whose focus is helping you solve any problems that might come up — so you can focus on creating

You can read more about Vuo's features, how we compare with other visual programming environments, our plans for the future, and other Vuo users in the community. Please consider helping us continue to develop Vuo by buying a license or making a donation.