Ministry of Sound Headphone Spot Breakdown

January 17, 2012 - By 

I’m sure by now you have seen this excellent Headphone spot by Paul Clements. It’s full of beautifully animated and composited scenes made with Mograph and Cinema 4D. Today, Paul posted a breakdown video of how he animated many of the scenes including some mograph breakdowns and some before and after compositing. It’s outstanding what a talented artist can make on his own with these incredible tools.

Posted In:  Inspiration Motion Design
  • Amazing, I loved this spot. Thank you.

  • Even the playblasts blow me away. Incredible work, Paul.

  • Is most difficult make the breakdown than the same spot… awesome !!!

  • God damn that was good. I’m literally sitting here thinking how on earth do I make that. I need to learn a LOT MORE about Cinema 4D than I currently do!

  • even the break down is phenomenal !!! Good gosh….applause !!!

  • Holy sh…! That’s awesome! Thanks for relinking this. It’s really cool to see how things get done. Tnkas in advance!

  • Omg!!! This is really awesome!! Nick can you show us some tricks like in this video? I tried to modelize my headphones but the hear cloth look-like part is hard to make. Anyone got a hint? πŸ™‚

  • Woooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow
    that’s good nick how much it take to make like this
    and how it take tom ake tutorial fot it

  • woooow that was mind blowing and so motivating!!! I’m getting on C4D right away.

    ps name of the dub step track? anyone plz!!!!

  • It has got some style and really awesome breakdown, but doesn’t say much to a beginner….:(
    i would love to see a tutorial on some of those effects, and that cloth trick, can’t imagine how?!

    • This doesn’t say much to a beginner, but it is incredibly inspiring and useful to those of us that have moved passed the beginner stage.

      Tutorials are time consuming and often an hour of watching a tutorial will yield limited gains to non beginners. This delivered so much information and technique in a very short time period. Time to start experimenting!

  • Yes on so many levels!

  • By the way … Did you already see his Ministry of Sound “Electronic 80s 2” Spot and that insane breakdown?

  • Even his breakdown has flair. Wow.

  • Wow!! Im happy and sad at the same time.

  • Oh man! Ive been really wanting to know how to do that “trasformers style” animations. Please OH please OH please do tut on this Nick, I beg of you.

  • between 38 and 42 seconds. is there any good tuts anyone know that focus in the attaching of jjoints to geometry (as paul has). really cool work. i also think the joint set-up is in trun linked into a mograph ( the step effector at work in places) love to know if anyone has any tricks or tuts on this. really great work and refreshing viewport outputs!

  • The most interesting part, really, is the COMPOSITING stuff at the end! He shows you basically how he builds and animates everything, but I’m at a loss when he sprints full speed through the compositing finishes that make it all look so good. He piles a bunch of treatments up and then crushes it somehow and it looks fantastic. Anyone know what he’s doing there?

  • Wow nice breakdown, mind blowing animation. πŸ˜€

    Would love to see a tutorial on some of the techniques used in this animation, what do you think about a tutorial on some of these techniques Nick?

  • Woooooooooooooooooooooowwww!!! You are doing fantastic works. Really i’m wanting to know how to do that. Thanx man.

  • Its Unreal!
    BTW. Joints are so important in 3D animation and there are no good tutorials on the net (i know 2 and both are terrible to learn). I hope to see one from Chris with some surface action. It would make a BIG BIG difference for many people to know how to control a surface or object with them.

  • wow un believable greaaat breakdown inspiring

  • nick, please never do a tutorial on this…anyone who has been using cinema for more than a few months and have been watching tutorials and training stuff will see the basic techniques being used in here…its all surprisingly straightforward and well executed (tho a lot of the falloffs are turned off…there’s a hint for you kids)…

    • I see what you mean with it being straightforward as he seems to basically be employing the same technique replicated with radial cloners etc. I’m fairly new to C4D and have gone through some training, but would love to see a really super short/basic tut on the “transformer” type of animation (ie: having something flip/rotate into something from nothing). It appears to be animating vertexes of a shape too, but I’m not too familiar on that subject yet.

    • David Lewandowski already kind of did tutorials on almost everything in this spot. At Siggraph he talked through his work on Tron… this stuff is very similar. Random Effectors breaking the leading edge of PolyFX. So much great insight in that talk.

      Here’s the Lewandowski talk

      • Awesome find man! Love the talks/demos even though they are very inspiring and demoralizing at the same time. It’s nice to see how they build really cool complex stuff in a somewhat “simple” manner.

  • The dude pushing C4d more to the limit,unlike Nick stuck with spheres and ripping people off with the kits,no offense the only Kits I like are the lighting pro.

    • Dude dont hate on Nick he also is a great artist and teacher and his kits and tutorials have took c4d to another level.

    • I wish I was as talented as Paul. I would show you everything I knew if I did. I use spheres and simple mograph because it’s all I know, really. I am (slowly) learning C4D and showing you what I know as I learn it. It’s up to these real artists to push and show what is really possible. It’s also why I’m trying to get Chris more involved, because he knows WAY more than I do. As for the kits, I would love to hear how I can make them better. We are always trying to make these kits more useful for artists to help them build more stuff.

      • I think it speaks volumes that you will even entertain trolls like Andrew and address them as reasonable people.

        Haters gonna hate, as they say. Rest assured for every one like him there are ten that really appreciate the lengths you go to to SHARE YOUR KNOWLEDGE FOR FREE. Yes, you charge for some add-ons you produce. As far as I know, that’s called making a living.

        I assume you havent forced anyone at gunpoint to buy your products. More to the point, you have covered so much stuff in your tutorials that would enable anyone with enough initiative of their own to reproduce most of the tools youre selling – cant say fairer than that really…

        I hope it goes without saying, but please keep up the good work Nick and associates.

    • Andrew, you get the award for the lamest blog-comment in 2012! And we are not past January yet. Well done!

  • That’s just crazy good.

  • Plenty of techniques! Now i have to play it in slow motion to see how exactly every elements are formed…Excellent work!!

  • Sick!!! That whole cloth for the cloth, hahaha. That one was blowing my mind.

  • supper breakdown

  • great to take a peek into some inner workings
    thanks for posting

    i was also very impressed with the animation in this vid:

    apparently it’s all C4D with very little AE

  • Nick/Chris if you’re listening; give us a 10 min or less tut on the basics of this “Transformer” inspired animation style!

  • Truly Amazing…

  • great one πŸ™‚ love to see it.. btw: the song is ‘skrillex – reptile’

  • Thank you for taking look at that video. πŸ™‚

  • Just awesome.
    I will try to do it by myself, instead of looking for a tutorial!

  • Terrific!!
    Impressive technicns!

    Now, let’s try to look at it from another perspective, I guess it’s interesting, we could learn something. How about trying to reply/figure out answers to the following questions:

    1. was the whole work done by Paul only (aka “one guy only”)?
    – I think so

    2. how many years of experience with C4D this guy has?
    – About ten?

    3. how long did it take him from start to finish? (of course working full time 8hrs/day)
    – Just gessing… a month??

    4. how much could he have been paid for this spot?
    – I’m off here, I’ve got no clue about costs in the market.

    Your turn! πŸ™‚

    • if this was an paid work, i would ppl. say between 4k and 8k bucks… those companies are often very difficult to handle with, but the payment is well then. …
      how many years experience? i would say about 5 years strong work; maybe some “playin’- time” before actually learning stuff in C4D…

      C4D isn’t that difficult then it looks… the most important basics are on such great tutorials (see , greatest tutorial- ressources for C4D πŸ˜‰ ) all the other stuff could be learned in a few month with hard work and interest in the functionality of MOGRAPH or other systems… πŸ™‚

      (just my thoughts about it)


      • 4K – 8K! I would of thought it would be a LOT more than that.

        • I agree, $ 8K is definitely not enough for this work.
          I believe it could have taken him about a month to complete the entire work, but that’s doesn’t pay for creativity!

          I’d guess it to be closer to 15K


  • The spot was breathtaking but the breakdown just blew me away. I couldn’t imagine ever making anything that awesome.

  • You can’t create those sort of animations without being very smart. Very clever and inventive techniques to achieve a great animation piece!

  • Wooooooooooow! Thanx Nick for posting. Awesome!

  • Hi Nick
    Could you please create some tutors related to this video???

  • Fantastic!
    Hey Paul, how about some tutorials on the GSG.
    There must be a few basic techniques there that could each do with a tutorial.

  • Do it nick for all this gay’s pleas !!!!!!!

  • Stunning. This has to be some of the best work I’ve seen on C4D. I’m shaking !

  • hay thousand beaver … a wonderful working

  • I’ve watched this about 100xs now and I become more amazed every time I watch it. I’ve been trying to recreate some of the animations to learn how he did it and I’m getting somewhat getting close but it’s nowhere near what he had. I’m probably the 100th person to ask this, but could you pleeeeease make some tutorials on how he used mograph and especially how he animated the cloth of the headphones? That would be AMAZING πŸ™‚

  • Sexy. I saw this piece a while back. Thanks for the breakdown.

  • i realy rate those dubsteps music’s
    d video is great amazing work with c4d

  • I tried to roughly replicate a couple of the shots (the cord wrapping around the wire, and the bit at the end with pieces folding and appearing). They’re very rough and no where near as good as the originals, but I learned a lot trying to make them, and they may be of some interest to others.
    (BTW, does anyone know of a nicer place to host files)

    • Thanks for posting the files…looked pretty close…maybe u can try, or even dropbox?


    • Do you know how Paul seemed to use a custom shape for the falloff of the random effector? Does that make sense?

      At 2:08 it looks like just an alpha of the shape that the pieces seem to flip over

      • I haven’t tried it out yet, but I just learned that in the Falloff section of (well pretty much any MoGraph effect) you can set it to ‘source’ (I think ) which you can link to a spline. I’m dying to try it out tomorrow.

  • Hey Nick / everybody! Wondering if you know of any great short courses worldwide for an introduction to Cinema 4D? Lovin this stuff, I have experience with After Effects and Photoshop and wanna do more 3D in my motion.


  • Wow. I think my heart just stopped. Was that just with advance render?

  • There no need for tutorial the break down show almost every tricks if you learn it your self the better and easy c4d it get.The monkey have tuts in here at the gsg you guys r just lazy..

  • Like this, everything looks like easy !

  • I would sell my Grandma to learn some of the techniques used. I saw the video a few days back and it BLEW MY MIND! INCREDIBLE work. PLEASE TRY AND PUT A TUTORIAL together, this video is INCREDIBLE!

  • The wires being wrapped around the headphone jack was driving me crazy. I wasn’t sure how Paul made it look like it was wrapping around the jack, as if being tossed around a cylinder with physics and then stopping perfectly in place. But with hours of tweaking and messing around, I figured out how to pull off the effect. I’m not sure if it is how he did it, but I used a combination of MoSpline with Extrude Nurbs, Bend, Cloner and Step Effector. It gives the forming circular animation the appearance of cloth, or something with gravity.

  • Try to replicate some of that stuff, just for practice.
    b.t.w. Great breakdown – beauty! πŸ™‚

  • Two days later IΒ΄m still watching this “coolest thing ever”

    Thanks for sharing great stuff Nick.

  • Amazing work!!! You can see a lot of the Tron tip from the Maxon Booth coming through. Very Nice work!

  • hey nick!. greetings! thanks nick for sharing such wonderful link!!.. im wondering how Paul clements do the foam transformation effect….can you teach us how?.. were dying to see it.. thanks much!!!

  • nice cloth rig anyone make some small tutorial for this πŸ™‚

  • I am really really curious how the parts in 0:08 is done. How he later added the rotation is beyond me as well.
    Any ideas anyone? I’m dying to figure it out πŸ™

    • Hey Joon,maybe devide a tube into 5 parts, than put a bend deformer on the tip, at last you put it in a cloner-object with radial setup. than draw a spline and use a spline wrapper to the tube… that would be my first suggestion.

  • please provide a tutorial about the animation

  • Instead of everyone asking for turorials why don’t we just try different bits and share our results, I’m sure between us we could work it all out. πŸ™‚

  • That is INSANE! Amazing!

    Would love to see a training series based on this project!

  • damn straight bro! πŸ˜€

  • How do you render out in those low quality wireframes he does? Is it just with the render set to Cel Render?

  • Could someone give a breakdown of how you think he made the cord animate together, with the sheath and little strands inside? I can’t quite figure it out.

  • WOW! crazy stuff thanks for sharing!

  • what was used to make the folding polys at marker 2.00? Every show was beautiful. thanks for posting this. every few months i think to myself, alright NOW i’m comfortable with this program. i won’t think that for a little while now.

    • Just for a change, I can actually answer a question!
      1 get a plane
      2 put a polyfx as it’s child
      3 grab a step or random effector, and play with psr,have it effect the polyfx
      4 change the effector fall-off to sphere and animate it’s size/shape
      5 chuck an explosionfx as another child of the plain and mess with the thickness to get some bulk to the polys but drag it away from the plane
      6 smoke em if got em

  • Does anyone know how to make the belt wrap around the speaker section like at 0.28?

  • Just a Random side note I’d like to add after watching this.

    Beats by Dr. Dre ….aint got shit on this

  • Any idea how he did the part at 1:20~ where the pieces are split into two then united?
    I’m sure it’s very easy just my brain is in hibernation mode right now..

  • Hey All,
    I found this tutorial on the unfold effect used in this video.

    The instructor, Orestis Konstantinidis used this exact video for his inspiration.

    Hope you guys enjoy πŸ˜€

  • love it!! Breakdowns are great for learning

  • I’ve tried to reproduce the “belt wrapping” effect found @ 0:18 >
    What do you guys think ?

  • I think that this may be the solution to the tube flop. That is what I call it. Thanks to “rb pratt” I was able to come up with this.

  • This is an amazing spot!!
    One year ago I made an animation of a headphone:

  • Amazing C4D stuff, thanks for sharing

  • No Problem! Tons of Fun To Figure Out.

  • The wrapping in the beginning. I used a mospline animated the little sweep to above and then go down and round. No bend deformer is used. Then i make with a sweep nurbs the rectangle and put a tracer in it. Then when i put this in a cloner and clone it on the mospline there you got your wraping. But now there is a problem. In the cloner i make 6 copies. but my stepeffector don’t work. On wich object must it go tracer,mospline.

  • Every time I see those amazing videos I just feel sad. How long will I become somebody like that? I have put all the time and sacrifice a lot of my time to learn but it seems I still have long way to go. T.T

  • It turns out that with Mospline you can do it and make some interesting stuff. I just tweaked the last project I posted. And I came up with this.

  • Wow! That was some bad azz mama jama. Brilliant work and even bigger thanks for showing your thought process.

  • Thank you very much for posting this.
    This work is out of this world !!!! Truly amazing !!!!

  • is there anyway to have the David Lewandowski demo in better quality ?… im missing a loooot of technical goodies by not seeing the details of the screen capture… im trying to understand how he deformed the circle spline into a smooth random shape and have the step effector apply to the animation … if anybody can enlighten me … i’d be a happy man
    thks !

  • WOW !!,
    awesome breakdown, tutorials will be super awesome !!

  • Sorry if this or something similar has been posted, but this is a nice little tutorial that goes some way toward explaining some of what’s involved.

    • This tutorial is just working if you use only one shape like in this video.
      but i didnt work out if you youse thousend of different shapes like in the original spot to build a whole picturein a circle or what ever. The Problem is;

      1. How to cut the an object into 1000 pieces that exactly like teh texture(picture)
      2. How to flip all the pieces, cause you have to flip the axis and the axis has to be at the bottom, but the polyfx effector or the break object use allway the middle of an object you can try to bring the axis to bottom of an polyobject and put this into a polyfx or breakobject, they will ingnor the axis and they use the middleaxis again

      IΒ΄m now trying for 5 days 8 hours a day to figur out how that works, and believe me.. iΒ΄m going crazy

  • Beautiful!

    Don’t worry Nick! Stay motivated and you will become a fantastic artist.
    At this time, I want to be as great as you! πŸ™‚

    Best regards!

  • can some one tell me how can we get affect in the last scene where the blocks flips to from the the head phone’s earpiece

  • Awesome, really nice, the breakdown is better than the original πŸ˜‰

  • I’d be really interested in knowing how he made the wires, was it with a tracer or something. Still, really awesome stuff!

  • For the Trasforming/Transition effect, Pretty certain he uses that black and white sunburst type image map that you see and applies it to a shader effector, then adjusts the rotation and scale. And to get it to effect each polygon you would need to select all the polygons, go to function and select “disconnect,”, then select “explode segments”. this will create individual objects for each polygon. then use mograph fracture and select “explode elements and connect”. Then apply your shader effector and play with the scale only on one axis, and also the rotation on only one axis… another way to do it is use the explosion FX and play with all those settings.. i got something looking pretty good but The problem i am having is the in both instances the little peices rotate in the center and not on the edge as if the pivot point is in the center of the polygon, not on the edge.. and after moving the pivot point it still doesnt work… If anyone knows a way to fix that….

    • After bugging me for so long every day I worked this out.

      1 .You have to set the fracture object to “straight” instead of “explode segments”
      2. The objects must have thier pivots aligned to x axis which can be done under :Structure > Axis center, then drop the x value to -100%. then apply. this will center the pivot to the X edge of the object.
      3. EACH object need to be then placed into its own null. this is the hard part.. I need a python script to do this without having to do it one by one, unless anyone knows how to do that automatically.
      Then the rotation will work from the pivot point like a flap.
      This whole thing is easy with a cloner object with “fix clone” you just need to do the pivot centering and not the null part.. But we want to be able to do this to any object.

  • STEP BY STEP to recreate the cloth effect using the same method

    1) create a tube object and add a fillet to it

    2) convert it hit c > using loop select to ring faces on the back and delete

    3) optimise the mesh to remove loose points

    4) goto tags > simulation > cloth tag

    5) reduce to gravity and animate the wind in one direction then the other direction

    6) add the tube as a child of a cloth nurbs and increase subdivisions and thickness

    7) play with the settings to get the desired result

    8) tags > character > point cache

    9) click store state then click calculate

    10) remove or disable the cloth tag

    11) Alter the scale to change animation speed or add a “-” to reverse it

    12) select the cloth mesh and goto > character > add point morph

    13) click on the tag > mode > poses > then drag the morphed mesh in(duplicate the original mesh)

    14) on the pop up click no to make it relative

    15) goto the deformers and select morph > click on the deformer and drop in the point morph tag

    16) goto > falloff > change the shape to linear and the orientation to +y

    17) animate the linear falloff across the cloth to morph on gradually

    18) play with the other sliders to get the desired result

  • Great! Nick I found this video while watching some tutorials yours and I imagine that you could lean to one which contains tips for video similar to the headphones.

    Sorry do not speak English, so I translated with google translator: D I hope you understand me.

  • Amazing piece of work Paul, truly inspirational and the breakdown was pretty slick too!

    I found a French tutorial which might have inspired Paul or visa-versa and might be helpful to those trying to recreate the animation of the headphone cable and jack. Looks like you need to purchase it but the page has screens which gives you some idea as to how that part of the animation was constructed.

    Here is the link,,25825.html#tab_extrait

  • Nice! How did it animate it all in a nice way? O_O

  • Nice! How did it animate it all in a nice way?

  • Stunning breakdown, you can really learn alot from this πŸ™‚

  • i found this useful tut about one of th

  • i found one of the most interesting tutorial on how to Headphone – Cable Cover Growth
    i will love to give this young kid who’s only 15 a lots of encouragements
    here is the link

  • i found one of the most interesting tutorial on how to Headphone – Cable Cover Growth
    i will love to give this young kid who’s only 15 a lots of encouragements
    here is the link

  • Headphone – Growing Disc from the same 15 years old kid

  • 15yrs old? I don’t buy it.

  • Anyone know how he did the building of the headphones with the joints at 0:35 – 0:45. I’ve been trying everything and still cant connect anything ti the joints to make that FX.

    Love this video btw.

    // Matt Hal

  • Amazing Stuff

  • Raoul van Maaren July 7, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    Awesome stuff! It makes me feel such a beginner πŸ™

  • Im Having a Problem trying to redoing the part of the Big Circle arroun this one, you know, the part where Paul Clements uses Bones. It seems he is using the cloner, but the parts are affected by scale, and match. Please help me, Im driving crazy trying to get it

  • Thank you for creating my private students have access to your web page post. Your kindness will be greatly appreciated. I’ve got some ongoing tasks and I wanted all these students help me with it. The only way they could do this was carry out some exploration on the internet so as to help make my function quicker. They came across your internet site coupled with the content on it, specially this weblog post, seriously assisted them to come to great conclusions on factors we needed to carry out.

  • I’m in shock of just how talented this artist is. I’m currently an aspiring motion graphic artist. Working in my studio painting wasn’t enough, learning graphic design and then becoming an art director isn’t enough after seeing this!
    I’m so happy I explored here on “” and was able to see this inspiring work!! Hats off and cheers!
    Just awesome!

  • The transform or unfolding polygons effect seems to be made with animated texture map than add to shader effector which controling timing and rotation of broken polygons. Is’t it?

    • It would be cool to see Gorilla tutorial with animating textur in AE and exporting them to shader effector to controll afected polygons πŸ™‚

  • Amazing work!

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