Learning AV Foundation: A Hands-on Guide to Mastering the AV Foundation Framework


AV Foundation for iOS and OS X® Programming—Get Started Fast!

If you develop media-rich iOS or OS X apps, you can do amazing things with Apple’s AV Foundation. However, the framework is extremely large, reliant on cutting-edge language features, and poorly documented. Now, there’s a more productive way to master these immensely powerful technologies: Bob McCune’s Learning AV Foundation.

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AV Foundation for iOS and OS X® Programming—Get Started Fast!

If you develop media-rich iOS or OS X apps, you can do amazing things with Apple’s AV Foundation. However, the framework is extremely large, reliant on cutting-edge language features, and poorly documented. Now, there’s a more productive way to master these immensely powerful technologies: Bob McCune’s Learning AV Foundation.

McCune’s live presentations and GitHub projects have already helped thousands of Apple developers get started with AV Foundation. Building on his experience, McCune helps you gain true mastery by creating real-world apps, hands-on.

You’ll build a voice memo app, custom video player, video editor, and an image/video camera app. As you proceed, you’ll master all the techniques you need to write your own advanced media apps from scratch. Throughout, McCune provides carefully crafted challenges and complete starter apps—all designed to help you deepen your understanding and make the most of Apple’s breakthrough media framework.


  • Understanding how AV Foundation fits in Apple’s media environment and each of its key areas of functionality
  • Enabling your apps with audio playback and recording features
  • Enhancing video playback to deliver a richer, more dynamic experience
  • Using AV Kit to match your user interfaces with iOS Videos or OS X QuickTime Player
  • Developing media capture apps with real-time video processing using OpenGL ES and Core Image
  • Implementing custom video players
  • Integrating advanced capture features such as video zooming, face detection, barcode scanning, and high frame rate capture
  • Mixing multiple audio tracks and automating volume control
  • Building sophisticated non-linear, non-destructive editing apps
  • Adding advanced video editing capabilities, such as video transitions and animation effects
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780321961808
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley
  • Publication date: 11/14/2014
  • Series: Learning Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 1,491,672
  • Product dimensions: 6.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Bob McCune is an iOS developer and instructor from Minnesota. He started developing for the Mac in 2007 and then switched to iOS when the first iPhone SDK was released in 2008. He is the owner of TapHarmonic, LLC, a small iOS consulting and training company based out of MN. Bob also founded the MN chapter of CocoaHeads in the spring of 2008 and remains the group leader to this day. Bob and his wife, Linda, have two amazing children who are who are growing up faster than he would like. He is incredibly blessed to have such a loving and supportive family.
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Table of Contents

Preface xiii

Part I: AV Foundation Essentials 1

Chapter 1: Getting Started with AV Foundation 3

What Is AV Foundation? 3
Where Does AV Foundation Fit? 4
Decomposing AV Foundation 6
Understanding Digital Media 7
Digital Media Compression 13
Container Formats 18
Hello AV Foundation 19
Summary 23
Challenge 24

Chapter 2: Playing and Recording Audio 25

Mac and iOS Audio Environments 25
Understanding Audio Sessions 26
Audio Playback with AVAudioPlayer 28
Building an Audio Looper 30
Configuring the Audio Session 34
Handling Interruptions 36
Responding to Route Changes 40
Audio Recording with AVAudioRecorder 42
Building a Voice Memo App 45
Enabling Audio Metering 52
Summary 57
Chapter 3: Working with Assets and Metadata 59

Understanding Assets 59
Creating an Asset 60
Asynchronous Loading 63
Media Metadata 65
Working with Metadata 70
Building the MetaManager App 76
Saving Metadata 98
Summary 101
Challenge 101

Chapter 4: Playing Video 103

Playback Overview 103
Playback Recipe 107
Working with Time 109
Building a Video Player 110
Time Observation 118
Creating a Visual Scrubber 124
Showing Subtitles 129
Airplay 133
Summary 136
Challenge 136

Chapter 5: Using AV Kit 137
AV Kit for iOS 137
AV Kit for Mac OS X 140
First Steps 140
Control Styles 144
Going Further 147
Working with Chapters 151
Enabling Trimming 157
Exporting 159
Movie Modernization 161
Summary 165
Challenge 166

Part II: Media Capture 167

Chapter 6: Capturing Media 169

Capture Overview 169
Simple Recipe 174
Building a Camera App 175
Summary 208
Challenge 208

Chapter 7: Using Advanced Capture Features 209

Video Zooming 209
Face Detection 216
Machine-Readable Code Detection 228
Using High Frame Rate Capture 241
Processing Video 247
Understanding CMSampleBuffer 249
Summary 257
Challenge 258

Chapter 8: Reading and Writing Media 259

Overview 259
Building an Audio Waveform View 265
Advanced Capture Recording 276
Summary 293
Challenge 293

Part III: Media Creation and Editing 295

Chapter 9: Composing and Editing Media 297

Composing Media 297
Working with Time 300
Basic Recipe 303
Introducing 15 Seconds 307
Building a Composition 311
Exporting the Composition 316
Summary 321
Challenge 322

Chapter 10: Mixing Audio 323

Mixing Audio 323
Mixing Audio in the 15 Seconds App 327
Summary 333
Challenge 333

Chapter 11: Building Video Transitions 335

Overview 335
Conceptual Steps 337
15 Seconds: Adding Video Transitions 348
Summary 360
Challenge 360

Chapter 12: Layering Animated Content 361

Using Core Animation 361
Using Core Animation with AV Foundation 363
15 Seconds: Adding Animated Titles 367
Preparing the Composition 378
Summary 383
Challenge 384

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