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TOPIC: Alternative to Console, a different approach

Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 2 months ago #6213

  • Greg_E
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So of those people who would love to have a LightWorks Console but can not part with the $3,000+, what features would you want and what kind of button layout would be best? Assume buttons about the same size as a standard computer keyboard or slightly larger. Probably a clear key cap and probably slightly contoured.

Heart of the device would be a ShuttlePro v2, but with the buttons changed for something a little higher quality and arranged in a more ergonomic way. This gives us 15 buttons to work with, and it looks like the buttons can be fully programmed to match the software features.

Assuming it is worth doing, there is a possibility that Contour Designs might be interested in producing it since they have the electronics already build and it just needs the buttons moved to fall into a better place.

With high quality components I would expect the target retail price to be around $300 to $500 USD. With components equal to the ShuttlePro I would expect retail to be $200 or less.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6531

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Sitting here looking at a pile of 17mm keycaps trying to figure out how I would arrange the buttons. There are fifteen choices on the ShuttleProV2, of those 3 would be forward (play), reverse (backwards play), and stop. A fourth would be a mode key which lets you flip through 3 levels of assignments for the controller which would give about 33 function keys. Two of those would be the Left and Right jump keys (Avid a and s keys) to move through your edits/cues/markers (mode one and maybe two). Trying to keep mode three for live cuts since most of us don't you multicam mode, they can always be reassigned.

Thinking I might need to go down to 12mm buttons, at least for a few of them.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6551

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Just found something that has made me rethink everything I was doing... I can not make anything decent for a price that competes with this:
www.xkeys.com/xkeys/xkedit.php

Anyone here ever use this jog/shuttle/keyboard?

Again not as nice as the LW console, but at less than 1/10 the price it might be good enough for many users. And since it appears to be completely programmable it should work with any editing software that you may choose to use.

I also did score a Shuttlepro v2 on ebay so I may still make something from it, but now don't want to dump much more money into the project which is basically required to improve it.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6583

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Still thinking about the ShuttlePro v2 conversion, would be nice if it had about 5 more buttons.
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Need to find a smaller trackball to put in/on the panel. It is a sloping box with a raised "bridge" panel for the upper switches (the one on the right).
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The ShuttlePro has 3 modes that can be programmed, so that effectively increases the number of buttons, but I hate to flip through a bunch of modes to get work done and I don't think there are any indication lights that can be used, still need to research this option a little bit more to see how it really operates.
Last Edit: 3 years, 1 month ago by Greg_E.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6587

Sounds interesting. Good luck with your research.
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I am not employed by EditShare. I am a Lightworks user.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6598

  • Odat
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Greg_E wrote:
The ShuttlePro has 3 modes that can be programmed, so that effectively increases the number of buttons, but I hate to flip through a bunch of modes to get work done and I don't think there are any indication lights that can be used, still need to research this option a little bit more to see how it really operates.


No indicator lights but if you click on the taskbar icon for the driver it shows you what settings are currently active. Also, when you switch options, a tooltip balloon pops up to tell you what settings are currently active.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6604

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Thanks. I have a strange feeling that I might find a few I/O pins on the processor that will go high or low when you flip these modes. At least I'm hoping to find this so I can light up some LEDs to show the mode change. If I go with expensive switches I would even make it so that certain families of functions were similar colors, flip the mode and the color groupings would change to follow.

That said an I think I'm going a different way. Started looking at keyboard encoders and found a 32 key encoder that remembers all the settings with the power off or if moved to another computer. Couple this with a ShuttleXpress which is a lot cheaper. If they will sell the encoder to me without the screw terminal connectors then I should be able to come in with ShuttleXpress and encoder for the same price as the ShuttlePro v2 and with 32 keys it should cover every major and most minor functions if I can find a way to fit them all to the panel. It also has a "shift" function so really up to 62 functions can be defined. Obviously I won't be using all those buttons since there just isn't room, but I'll use as many as needed to do the standard functions and make sure they are in a logical and comfortable place. Unfortunately to keep the price low I need to use "lesser" buttons, I know it is a compromise but it saves literally more than $200 (good switches are $15+ each) and precious room on the box because they are also smaller (12 mm squares). Downside is no back lights on the keys which I think is actually important knowing what the lighting is often set to in an editing room.

Also tracking down a more compact panel mounted trackball which may still make it to the final version. That's assuming that I have enough room for it on the box.

Because I haven't used Lightworks long enough, it would really be helpful to know what the main and secondary functions should be. Obviously forward play, reverse play, stop, jump to previous marker/edit and jump to next marker/edit. Also of course mark in, mark out, remove mark, insert clip, delete, undo, redo. This is of course my next step, analyze the key needs and decide if I need additional keys to make this work right.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6644

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Here is what I'm thinking based on a different approach based on using a keyboard encoder and a ShuttleXpress. A little cramped and need to stretch out a lot to get the right side buttons on the bridge, so some of them may go away. Still not committed to a trackball but it seems that with all applications there is still a lot of mouse work that needs to be done, so I want it close by. Need to check the sizes of the jog/shuttle and trackball to make sure everything will fit like this and still gathering prices to see how much I want to risk on the first device. If the trackball goes away I will probably move a bunch of switches off the bridge and onto the main panel.


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Just found out there is a shift function, that means about 60 functions that can be directly mapped to this controller, also means I need to change a few things and make room for a momentary and a locking shift key so I can change modes and keep them there. That will give me the multicam functions that I was trying to find a way to fit.
Last Edit: 3 years, 1 month ago by Greg_E.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6754

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I think this is the final panel layout pending price of the trackball. if it proves too expensive then I'll probably fill the space with the 22 buttons and buy one of the other boxes without the bridge, they will be a lot cheaper. I really want to trackball integrated because there seems like a lot of mousing that still needs to be done, so having it close at hand would be good. Print with no scaling, it should fit on letter and A4 and will give an idea of the layout.


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Last Edit: 3 years, 1 month ago by Greg_E.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6760

Hi Greg_E

I actually use this controller for Steinbergs Cubase 5 (Music Composition and mixing software)and Studio One Pro software (Pro Tools equivalent)
It is completely programmable but I would say the shuttle knob has really weird ballistics. I expected it to be smooth and yet sensitive for say when your scrubbing audio files on the cubase or Studio One Pro timelines but damm it the (insert expletive) is very touchy and races off wildly.I have tried to adjust the ballistics but the software doesn't give you much option for that particular option.
That said however the overall control it allows the user to program is fantastic and I haven't even begun to explore all its capabilities yet

Good on you for the time and effort your putting into this as I think the days of having to suffer with non specific keyboards are over. RSI being the big one.
This leads me to the subject of ergonomics which I think is pretty important when considering these types of consoles. I have tried several and while functionality is the key safe ergonomics are as important considering we editors sit at desks for the majority of the time scrolling through endless vision & sound to sometimes the detriment of our own well being.

Regards
Ronnie
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Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6775

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Ronnie,

Since you have one of the shuttle controllers, what do you think of the layout I have here? The only thing missing is the approximately half inch of plastic box all the way around the panel. It will probably get a small extension on the bottom edge in the form of a padded wrist support.

I haven't started messing with the shuttle knob programming but I don't expect a lot out of it. There really are no ballistics to speak of, it has 7 switches on each side so you really only have 7 functions you can program. There is a post describing what another user programmed and found useful that I was going to model it after, but it will fall far short of the device that EditShare sells to work with this software. There is a bug in the jog function of this version of Lightworks that renders the jog function of the ShuttlePro and ShuttleXpress almost useless, same goes for the keyboard input. If you don't care about scrubbing audio, the regular frame forward/reverse works fine if you just need to scroll through frame by frame for the video.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6804

Hi Greg_E
Did you mean to attach file or your previous PDF attachment
Regards
Ronnie
Alienware M17X R3 Laptop Core i7 2760QM CPU
@ 2.4 Ghz.
8 Gig Ram 1600 DDR3
NVidia 560 M Graphics.
1.5 TB 7200rpm Seagate HDD. Raid 0
17" Full 1920x1080 LED Display
2 x USB 3, 1 x ESata, 1 Gig Ethernet, HDMI 1.4 O/P 2 x USB 2.0 Ports.
Blackmagic USB 3.0 UltraStudio SDI Capture & Playback,
Display Port, Blu-Ray / DVD Recorder
Windows 7 64 Bit Pro SP 1. LightworksV11.5.1 Pro. 32bit & 64bit.
Avid DNxHD codec. GV Canopus Codec Pac V 7.02. Boris Red 5.4. ClipToolz Suite.
Motu Ultralite Mk3 Hybrid Audio Interface,
ADAM A3X Audio monitors

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6806

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Previous PDF. Also take a look in the keyboards section for my shuttle knob setings, I think these will be of some use to you and the explanation will get you on track for modifying the settings if you want something different. I do wish there were some detents or magnetic locks for the shuttle control so it would be easier to hit a certain speed, it is very touchy.

I'm getting ready to sell my ShuttlePro v2, I don't need all the functions with the panel I'm going to build so I just ordered a ShuttleXpress.

Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #6887

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Here is my first set of key assignments, trying to set up multicam as the shifted (and locked) level. Alternate for those that never use multicam might be to have more audio and video track keys and use the shift to switch between audio and video. Other ideas are to have the effects editor panel on a key, color correction on another, and other similar functions or other keys. But these are all programmable so it can change depending on the user and for other applications that use keyboard shortcuts.
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Re: Alternative to Console, a different approach 3 years, 1 month ago #7154

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300 views, not many comments. Maybe I'm going in the wrong direction for most people and it may not be worth designing it to be reproduced.
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