OpenSound Control Home Page

OpenSound Control ("OSC") is a protocol for communication among computers, sound synthesizers, and other multimedia devices that is optimized for modern networking technology and has been used in many application areas.

OSC Features

OSC Community Portal

OSC now has a collaborative

OSC Implementations

OpenSound Control has been implemented in the following systems:

Please let us know about any other systems not on this list.

OSC Documentation

The OpenSound Control Specification

A list of some of OSC's application areas.

A paper titled "OpenSound Control: State of the Art 2003." This is probably the best introduction to OSC's features, (then-)current implementations, and advantages.

We presented the first paper on OpenSound Control at ICMC 97, describing the protocol and its features. You can read the (page long) abstract or the full text in HTML form.

We presented a paper at ICMC 2001 about the advantages of using OSC addressing within an application even without sending OSC messages over a network: Managing Complexity with Explicit Mapping of Gestures to Sound Control with OSC. Another paper at the same conference, Preparation for Interactive Live Computer Performance in Collaboration with a Symphony Orchestra, describes how we used this technique successfully for a high-stakes musical performance.

The 1996 page for SynthControl, the parent protocol of OpenSoundControl.

OSC Resources

Proceedings of the Open Sound Control Conference that was held on July 30, 2004, in Berkeley, CA.

We have a suite of Max objects for supporting OSC, including sending and receiving OSC packets via UDP and a tool for building OSC address spaces in Max.

CNMAT's open-source library for constructing OSC packets. This is all you need if you want your application to be able to format OSC packets for sending over the network.

CNMAT's sendOSC and dumpOSC programs. The Unix program sendOSC allows the user to type in message addresses and arguments via a no-frills text interface, and formats and sends these messages to the desired IP address and port number. The Unix program dumpOSC listens for OpenSoundControl messages on the given port and prints them out in a simple ASCII format. It's a very useful tool for client debugging. Source code is available for these programs. They're also available as compiled binaries for OSX.

The OpenSound Control Kit, consists of an open-source library, API, documentation, and other goodies that implement most of the features of OSC and make it fairly easy for developers to add OSC support to their applications. This Kit is described in a paper we presented at ICMC 98.

CNMAT's CAST additive synthesizer was the first OSC-controllable application. We wrote detailed documentation of CAST's OpenSound Control implementation that we hope will serve as a model for how to document how a system responds to OpenSound Control.

There is an email developer's list for OSC hosted by CREATE.

Matt Wright, revised 6/23/4