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Review: The Loupedeck+ control surface and its Adobe Premiere Pro integration by Scott Simmons

Review: The Loupedeck+ control surface and its Adobe Premiere Pro integration by Scott Simmons

Loupedeck+ is an Indiegogo-funded, button-filled, knob-twisting, plastic-constructed, USB-connecting hardware console that was initially marketed as a photograph modifying console. It was developed with Adobe Lightroom Basic in thoughts however because the years have moved on the Loupedeck has now develop into a photograph and VIDEO modifying console! How did it obtain this magic when one take a look at the factor screams Lightroom? By way of the magic of software program. With software program, you’ll be able to adapt something to something.

Loupedeck joins a crowded area of hardware merchandise which might be designed to make life simpler for a lot of given computing duties. We’ve reviewed many of those merchandise on the Editblog. The Sensel Morph adapts to many various issues. The Logitech Craft keyboard can work with something actually. Ripples, Waves, Parts and MC Colours will help with shade grading.

How does Loupedeck match into this crowded area? In its personal means. Since we’re targeted on video post-production right here on the Editblog then we’ll concentrate on the just lately added Adobe Premiere Pro integration. That’s what prompted me to succeed in out to Loupedeck’s creators for a evaluation unit.

Making an attempt to suit a sq. peg right into a squircle gap

Check out the surface of the presently delivery $249 Loupedeck+.

The Loupedeck+ is the second era of the hardware and when you can presently purchase the unique Loupedeck it’s the + that added video performance. Right here’s the bullet-point record from the Loupedeck video modifying capabilities webpage:

  • Quicker and extra intuitive video modifying and shade correction. All primary instruments for colour grading are merely labeled on the console
  • Complete flexibility with Premiere Pro CC, permitting editors to make their very own configurations to suit their workflow
  • Potential to export/import editors’ private Loupedeck configuration setups and simply switch them to a different pc
  • Lumetri Colour workspace compatibility for shade grading
  • Capability to toggle between your favourite LUTs, serving as a big time saver
  • Versatile timeline navigation, content material trimming, and clip adjustment
  • Choice to customise console buttons to most popular Adobe Premiere shortcut calls for or use preinstalled features

All of the above is true. Quite than beat across the bush on the pluses and minuses of the Loupedeck with Adobe Premiere Pro I’ll get proper to the most important level: you could have to spend so much of time memorizing the settings, wanting on the documentation and simply studying how one can actually use the Loupedeck with PPro. That’s the in need of it. There are such a lot of buttons and knobs (most with a number of features) that it’s going to take time to actually dig deep into all that the Loupedeck can do with Premiere. And since this was designed as a photograph modifying system you possibly can see the builders making an attempt to take that peg and put it right into a gap that it wasn’t actually designed to slot in. That doesn’t imply it gained’t work as you possibly can typically get a in another way sized peg shoved right into a mistaken sized gap. It’s simply not very elegant.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck basic layerWhereas the knobs of the Loupedeck are clearly labeled and match most of the settings of the Lumetri Colour panel you’ll be able to see the place most of the different buttons and knobs have been matched to totally different Premiere features.

Should you tried to make use of the Loupedeck with none studying of the guide the essential layer (which means the default perform of the keys with none modifiers) keys would do principally what they’re labeled as. Since Lumetri appears to stick intently to the Lightroom paradigm a lot of the dials have a 1:1 relationship. For that, it’s actually quick and very good to work with. If most of your Lumetri work is concentrated within the Primary Correction and Artistic tabs of the Lumetri panel you’ll actually just like the Loupedeck.

For a superb instance of how a consumer should research the features of Loupedeck lets take a look at the way it works with Shade Wheels.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck Hue Sat Lum scrollsWithin the default primary layer the Hue/Sat/Lum buttons (and the P1, P2, P3 dials or scrolls) will control the Highlights/Midtones/Shadows Colour Wheels respectively.

Right here is how that’s defined within the guide:

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck

These scrolls aren’t close to as intuitive as trackballs to control shade wheels. In reality, it’s downright clunky however the builders do get an E for effort. The Loupedeck has the controls so why not attempt and adapt Lumetri the place you’ll be able to.

Holding down the Fn (Perform) key you will get one other degree of performance out of the gadget. There are 4 totally different ranges making for lots of of mixtures however extra on that later.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck

Wanting on the FN layer you’ll be able to see most of the dials are additionally used to control the Shade Wheels. Publicity controls SHADOWS: LUMINANCE (Z) which is the Shadows slider and Whites controls the MIDTONES: LUMINANCE (Z) which is the Midtones slider. Know what the Blacks knob controls that’s proper between the Publicity and Whites knob? The Vignette midpoint. Why not put all of the Shade Wheels sliders proper collectively? And unusually sufficient, there isn’t a default knob to control the Vignette quantity.

To make issues extra complicated, within the FN layer each the Highlights and Vibrance knobs control the identical factor: MIDTONES X AXIS. I can’t determine that one out.

In order that’s two locations to control Colour Wheels. Not a nasty factor however not one thing you’d ever actually simply uncover by farting round with the factor. Examine utilizing knobs, dials and buttons to control Colour Wheels to the three trackballs in a Tangent devivce and you’ll be able to see … peg – gap.

One other instance of considerably complicated mappings for video is the power to vary PPro monitor heights, one thing that could be very good to do by way of a dial.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck track height change

In CUSTOM MODE the change audio monitor peak (Vibrance knob) and change video monitor peak (tint knob) knobs aren’t positioned collectively. Why not? Sitting subsequent to the Vibrance knob is an unused Saturation knob. That looks like the apparent selection.

To notice one thing they acquired proper the D1 knob zooms the timeline in and out when working within the timeline.

Fortunately the controls within the Loupedeck could be custom-made in settings.

The controls for the Loupedeck+ run deep.

The software program could be very customizable. Very.

A lot of the dialog above seems like I’m being fairly damaging concerning the Loupedeck Adobe Premiere Pro integration. I’m not which means to be because it’s a cool piece of hardware, you simply need to take time to study the complexities. Speaking concerning the complexity of the Loupedeck is a direct results of the controller software program.

There are four “layers” to the software program that permits for lots of of controls.

  1. BASIC LAYER
  2. FN LAYER
  3. CUSTOM MODE LAYER
  4. CUSTOM MODE WITH FN LAYER

That is the outline of those 4 totally different modes proper from the guide:

Loupedeck+ additionally has a “Custom Mode” which might be activated by urgent the “Custom Mode” button (LED can be lit when Customized Mode is activated). This can open all of the dials for additional customization as a 3rd layer. When “Custom Mode” is enabled by urgent FN, you’ll have an alternate “Custom Mode” with FN, which makes 4 totally different layers of prospects to grasp Premiere Pro!

Whew.

I might put up a screenshot of every of those layers (I’ve received two of them above already) and how the default controls work in Adobe Premiere Pro however in case you’re critically contemplating the acquisition of a Loupedeck to be used with Premiere then I might extremely, extremely encourage you to provide the Loupedeck Adobe Premiere Pro CC consumer information a evaluate (pdf hyperlink). The truth is don’t simply evaluation it, research it. Dig into it. In fact, it’s no enjoyable to RTFM however you actually ought to know what you’re getting your self into in case you’re going to spend $250 on a Loupedeck. The truth is, obtain the Loupedeck software program, set up it and give that a look too. You’ll get a good suggestion of the depth.

Additionally from the Loupedeck guide:

By beginning to use Loupedeck+ in steps you’ll expertise a quick and extra environment friendly studying curve!

Boy howdy are they ever proper. These controls run deep.

Tons of, maybe hundreds of potential choices come up relating to customization. Is that good or dangerous?

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck settings

This little pie form lives in your menubar and is the place you entry the Loupedeck settings.

It’s when you dig in you’ll see how deep the settings go. Totally different controls are grouped into totally different units. Click on on one and you’ll entry controls for all of these within the set.

When you click on on a button and need to change it you’ll should dig into these customized controls. That’s the place issues go … deep. There are loads of choices.

Within the above picture, you possibly can see the interface for customizing the C buttons and the L buttons in addition to the essential perform and then the secondary Perform degree of these buttons. They don’t have a 3rd and fourth degree of performance by way of the Customized Mode.

Beneath the Press column on the fitting, you’ll see many, many features of Adobe Premiere Pro. Every part from keypresses to keyframing to totally different panels to instruments to markers to … properly … what appears to be most all the things Premiere will do. That’s what makes the Loupedeck such a deep software. Most every part is mappable to the various, many keys. Take into consideration how a lot stuff PPro can do. That’s numerous customization.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck custom D key

On this subsequent picture above you’ll be able to see the controls for the D dials. It’s set to do what I feel is among the greatest issues a hardware dial can do outdoors of Lumetri colour work: zoom the timeline in and out and perhaps different zooming issues across the interface. You possibly can inform it can do that however wanting underneath the Rotate column and seeing the purple proper arrow spotlight by the Zoom command, beneath the NAVIGATE class. The unhighlighted arrow by the Go To Subsequent/Earlier 5 Frames is for the D2 knob.

The place these settings as soon as once more get tough is whenever you take a look at the Press for the D1 knob as all of the knobs could be pressed which within the Lumetri colour controls resets them to zero, as anticipated.

Once I press the D1 knob within the timeline the timeline zooms out with Premiere’s Zoom to Sequence conduct. That is nice and what I might need. However looking beneath the Press column on the appropriate I can’t discover the place that Reset press is mapped.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck zoom to sequence

Wanting on the picture above there isn’t a arrow indicating the press is mapped to Zoom to Sequence. Nor can I discover an arrow for a Reset. The truth is scrolling across the tons of of various choices within the settings, I couldn’t discover something in that D1 Press column that has an arrow subsequent to it.

It does what I’d need it to take action I assume that’s okay.

However that’s what I imply concerning the degree of depth for the controls of the Loupedeck+. There are such a lot of instructions that may be mapped to so many buttons which might be non-standard for video modifying that the outcomes might be overwhelming. Is that this a nasty factor that makes the Loupedeck/Adobe Premiere Pro marriage dangerous? Under no circumstances. You simply want to concentrate on what you’re moving into in the event you’re going to spend the cash.

The controls run deep.

Additionally, use Lightroom? Get out your checkbook.

Speak concerning the Loupedeck in a video modifying vacuum negates certainly one of its most essential features: working with Adobe Lightroom Basic. Should you’re additionally a photographer within the Lightroom universe then all of a sudden the Loupedeck turns into much more usable. When you’re grabbing that PDF guide of the PPro integration get the primary Lightroom guide as nicely. Like Premiere, there are tons of controls for Lightroom and the one strategy to actually get to comprehend it outdoors of hands-on time with the hardware is to review that guide.

I first tried utilizing the Loupedeck with Adobe Premiere Pro however was shortly overwhelmed by how a lot it might do. After taking a step again I spent a whole lot of time with it in Lightroom Basic and was capable of develop a really feel for the Loupedeck and what number of controls it has. Whereas I used to be nowhere close to having all of the Lightroom controls memorized that second time I attempted to make use of the Loupedeck with Premiere it was much more profitable as I knew my method round it a lot better. I might open the PPro PDF guide on my iPad (or my second modifying show) and depart it up whereas I labored. This helped to seek out the controls and maintain them in my head.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck LightroomWith Lightroom, you’ve gotten two of the totally different modules in Lightroom obtainable by way of MODE in addition to a tab for once you’re cropping. So now we will even have totally different tabs on every MODE? Perhaps there are a whole lot of hundreds and even tens of millions of controls attainable for most of the supported apps.

Whereas I’ve by no means memorized all of the PPro controls and completely mastered the Loupedeck with Adobe Premiere Pro it’s rather more helpful now than the primary try to make use of it with Premiere. As a result of … the controls run deep.

Extra software program can be utilized with the Loupedeck and I’m guessing extra to return.

It’s not solely Lightroom and Premiere that will get the Loupedeck love.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck applications

Whereas clearly geared towards picture purposes the modifying integration in Adobe Premiere Pro past Lumetri exhibits the builders can and will adapt the Loupedeck to a variety of various things.

Whereas Cinema Grade is extra of a mouse-based colour grading device you possibly can see how the Loupedeck integration solely makes use of a number of the controls (Learn my Cinema Grade evaluate right here). Since Cinema Grade has totally different “rooms” they will every have their very own controls that are seen within the MODE pop-up.

These controls run deep.

Shopping for recommendation for the top Adobe Premiere Pro consumer

I’ll repeat what I stated above. Obtain the Loupedeck Premiere PDF guide and research it. Research it nicely. Take into consideration what all of the builders try to slot in when they’re adopting this piece of images hardware to a video world.

Obtain and set up the Loupedeck software program. That offers you a degree of element a bit past what the printed guide will present.

Promoting recommendation for Loupedeck builders

A number of years in the past I did a evaluate of the Contour Rollermouse. It was a really totally different and fairly costly piece of hardware to switch your mouse. Contour Design nonetheless gives a 30-day trial a refund assure for the Rollermouse in addition to another merchandise. I assumed this was an excellent factor so one might take the hardware for a spin with out danger.

When asking video editors to make use of a product that wasn’t actually designed for video modifying for video modifying, no danger is an enormous plus. Loupedeck doesn’t have something just like Contour Design’s 30-day trial and taking a look at their gross sales and refund web page this won’t be straightforward since they’re situated within the EU. But when attainable I might encourage Loupedeck to provide you with some sort of trial for video clients. I doubt that is potential for quite a lot of causes nevertheless it’s value a thought.

Proper at this second I’m extra enthusiastic about modifying than I’ve probably ever been in my life! Cannot wait to check out my new Loupedeck. Thanks @loupedeck pic.twitter.com/ydtMYbAV7R

— Fallon Images (@fallonphotog) January eight, 2019

This tweet above is the right enthusiasm a photographer and Lightroom Basic consumer ought to really feel when unboxing the Loupedeck+. Video editors may need to have a bit extra skepticism.

Wrap-up

I assume for those who actually needed to study the Loupedeck as deep as potential you would create some small adhesive labels to put above a number of the knobs and buttons. On the very least I’d print out the four totally different mappings and have them able to reference.

I want that the software program customization was a bit extra intuitive the place clicking on a control would let the consumer change the perform extra in context of the button versus these lengthy vertical menus which have folders filled with instructions. You might spend hours clicking round in them to find what all of the totally different attainable choices are. Whereas the software program could be very highly effective the consumer interplay with it wants some refinement.

This all comes again to how a lot time the consumer could be prepared to dig into the Loupedeck and study what it is going to do. The extra you’re prepared to review the extra you’ll get out of it. Simply wanting on the Premiere PDF documentation there are 9 pages of button explanations on the finish.

However since that is an Adobe Premiere Pro based mostly assessment I’ll shut with this: The Loupedeck+’s integration with the Lumetri Colour panel is straightforward to know, enjoyable to make use of and will certainly velocity up your shade work when you’re an enormous consumer of the Primary Correction tab. For every part else in PPro, the Loupedeck may velocity up your work when you’re prepared to actually research the factor. I feel most editors gained’t be prepared to place in that a lot time and effort whenever you’ve obtained the keyboard proper in entrance of you.

I not often name out one other evaluate of the identical product in considered one of my critiques however I’m compelled to on this case due to a line in Videomaker’s Loupedeck assessment. They are saying this: “You could use the Loupedeck + instead of a keyboard and potentially edit faster with more precision.”  That’s fallacious on so many ranges. No editor of any superior talent degree would ever substitute the keyboard solely with a Loupedeck for video modifying because it definitely wouldn’t be extra exact. It will probably complement the keyboard in a pleasant means, simply not exchange it. However I assume if you would like one other opinion of the Loupedeck you’ll be able to learn that evaluate too.

Execs:

Knobs on the Loupedeck that match most of the sliders within the Lumetri Shade panel.

The builders have labored arduous to make it work with Premiere in addition to different purposes.

The hooks into Adobe Premiere Pro by way of the Control Surface choice make the controls very responsive.

Editors who additionally use Lightroom will get twice as a lot (if not far more) out of the Loupedeck as will Premiere solely customers.

Cons:

A few of the default control placements don’t make numerous sense. For instance, in CUSTOM MODE LAYER the SLIP clip choice 5 frames and the SLIDE clip choice 5 frames must be on adjoining knobs since they’re complementary trim features.

Can a bit of hardware attempt to do an excessive amount of?

Cautions:

You need to in all probability begin with the Default keyboard shortcuts in Adobe Premiere Pro to get probably the most out of the Loupedeck as a result of in case you’ve mapped a few of the features away from the default keys a few of these features won’t work proper.

Adobe Premiere Pro Loupedeck solo mode

The Loupedeck can’t open tabs within the Lumetri panel so uncheck the Solo Mode so you’ll be able to open a number of tabs that the Loupedeck makes use of.

It’s a valiant try and control the Lumetri Shade Wheels with knobs and dials however it’s no alternative for trackballs on a standard colour grading control surface. However editors who spend much more time within the Primary Correction, Artistic and Curves tabs of the Lumetri Colour panel (and not the Colour Wheels) may get higher use general out of the Loupedeck than one thing like a extra conventional Tangent panel.

Did I point out the Loupedeck+’s controls run deep?


SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS

Adobe Lightroom 6, Adobe Lightroom Basic CC 7.four or later, Adobe Photoshop CC, Skylum Aurora HDR, Beta integration with Seize One.

Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Adobe After Results CC

Home windows® 10, Home windows® eight.1, Home windows® 7 Mac® OS 10.12 or later model.

Web connection wanted for Loupedeck ™ software program obtain.

USB 2.zero A

39,5 x 15 x four cm; zero,67kg

Shopping for choices

Okay, yet one more … I discovered this video evaluation on YouTube and since I spent a lot time on the depth of the controls and solely casually talked about the Lumetri integration I really feel like I want to strengthen how good that integration is. Whereas I don’t agree with the whole lot there’s some good information in right here about utilizing the Loupedeck with what it does greatest: operating the Lumetri panel.

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