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Thread: Would love a iPad Control Surface App...

  1. #1
    From Browser To Broadcast jmmultex's Avatar
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    Would love a iPad Control Surface App...

    Here is an application for the iPad that controls any audio application (Pro Tools, Logic, etc):

    http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ac-7-...363743042?mt=8

    I would love to see Newtek release a virtual control surface like this specifically for the TriCaster. It could become like an LC-11 on steroids - effectively providing tailored touch controls for most things that would need to be done during a production.

    As an added bonus, the fact it is back lit would make it an ideal control surface in a dark environment...

    Would anyone here be interested in having Newtek do something like this? More importantly to Newtek - how much would you be willing to pay for it?

    -john
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    John Mahoney
    GNURAL NET, Inc.
    Trenton, NJ 08691

    [email protected]
    http://www.gnuralnet.com

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  2. #2
    Grizzled Veteran jcupp's Avatar
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  3. #3
    This is where I think a vibrant third-party would be best suited for such an endeavor.
    I don't think they (the vid side) have many mac proponents/coders for such a thing.

    NewTek needs to provide a more substantial SDK before something like this can happen from the outside, though.

  4. #4
    From Browser To Broadcast jmmultex's Avatar
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    I would be very happy to see something like this delivered by a third party - I'm just not sure if the economics could work or even if Newtek is interested in providing the level of platform openess that it would require.

    As popular as the TriCaster is, it is still a fairly small market for a third party developer. They would need to recover all of their costs and make a profit over whatever percentage of TriCaster owners would be willing to pay for it. Without a lot more visibility into the makeup of this market, it would be tough to commit the resources up front to develop something like this.

    Newtek, on the other hand, is more interested in selling TriCaster systems, giving them a different avenue to profitability. If having something like this available helped them generate enough new sales (that they would otherwise have missed out on), they could even give something like this away for free and still come out ahead.

    Any other options - like encouraging more of an open sourced, non-commercial development initiatives could end up hurting their dealer network.

    Jcupp's idea of building it via a midi interface might be a little more generic (and thus have a bigger potential market) - it is certainly a lightweight enough protocol to support this kind of setup. My one concern (which could be based on my outdated knowledge) is that it could have some limitations around reliability and state management. (I had a massive midi setup during the late 80's that had it's share of hung notes and missed commands - I ended up having a button built that sent a stop command across all channels to help 'reset' things when they got out of sync. Maybe the spec is richer and it works better now days )

    However it makes it to market, I would love to see something like this get developed.

    -john
    John Mahoney
    GNURAL NET, Inc.
    Trenton, NJ 08691

    [email protected]
    http://www.gnuralnet.com

    Gear:
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  5. #5
    'the write stuff' SBowie's Avatar
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    We've actually talked about what an iPad could best be used for in a TC context - feel free to dream out loud.
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  6. #6
    NewTek System Integrator PIZAZZ's Avatar
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    I could build one of those for you John. $150k would cover it.

    Cool thing is it would come with a human operator that is fantastic at taking complex commands and orchestrating them out on the TriCaster.
    Jef Kethley
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  7. #7
    From Browser To Broadcast jmmultex's Avatar
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    Probably a smidge out of my price range, especially if I'd need to feed and house the included operator.

    -j
    John Mahoney
    GNURAL NET, Inc.
    Trenton, NJ 08691

    [email protected]
    http://www.gnuralnet.com

    Gear:
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  8. #8
    'the write stuff' SBowie's Avatar
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    Some of those operators can really pack it away, too.
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  9. #9
    LiveSet Making Machine joseburgos's Avatar
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    John,
    Like what would you control on the iPad? Just curious as to what you want or envision. See I don't think totally having the TriCaster desktop on the iPad is something you would want but I believe you already can using a VNC type program;
    http://www.technobuffalo.com/blog/un...other-computer
    Jose Burgos
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  10. #10
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    Something like this?

    BroadcastPix has this control app...

    Kris
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  11. #11
    Production Wizard radams's Avatar
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    To be honest...as great as the iPad is it still doesn't give the tactile feedback and ease and accurate control real faders do...and to work with multiple faders at the same time interactively...

    I wouldn't like using the ipad for that...
    Now for display and read out data...great...or individual tactile controls fine...but something that you need realtime feedback and tactile sense...
    No for the iPad...IMHO.

    And as for Midi...it is very limited...though generic...

    I would recommend looking at a couple of other options first..

    One being EuCon...from Euphonix...the artist series...

    This is a protocol that is through Ethernet...is application and hardware aware...and has much more flexibility...and options.

    http://www.euphonix.com/artist/

    Now these have realtime tactile and automation....you can not get that with a touch screen for multiple faders...it just doesn't work.

    Touch screens are great for displaying parameters, etc...and allowing some selections...but not tactile multi channel interaction with tactile feedback.

    Why this is important when dealing with faders..
    1) you don't look at the faders when mixing...you look at the video/meters...and listen to the audio.

    2) you tactily feel the fader...On an Ipad you would have to fumble your fingers to get in the rigt spot and touch just right...now move the faders together but individually...

    I think the iPad and other touch screens will be great for some things...but faders for live production...Nope.

    Cheers,
    Ray Adams
    FX and Production Supervisor

  12. #12
    Production Wizard radams's Avatar
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    Here is another option I would prefer...

    http://www.alesis.com/mastercontrol

    Then you can have a REAL mixer along with a control head.
    For live production this would be great to have.

    Cheers,
    Ray Adams
    FX and Production Supervisor

  13. #13
    From Browser To Broadcast jmmultex's Avatar
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    If you view a touch panel as simply a virtual replacement that duplicates a physical control surface, it is limited in a live situation. Instead, I like to think about it as a way to assign functions to your fingers, giving you a different way to interact and adjust from a traditional physical control surface.

    As an example, consider controlling sound...

    I can look down at a touch display and touch a 'sound channel' with a finger (not just a virtual pot). That act would assign that specific channel to my finger. Everything becomes relative at that point. The system only needs to use the movements of my finger to manage specific controls of that sound channel (I'm not riding a slider on the screen). After I'm touching the surface, I don't need to look at it (the same way I don't look at a mouse pad when I'm using it). I could set my eyes back on to my meter bar or my main TriCaster screen and slide my finger to control things. (Up/Down for Volume, Left/Right for Pan, tap for Mute/unmute, etc) When I lift my finger from the surface for a certain period, the assignment goes away. Since the iPad is multi-touch, you could exercise this kind of control over multiple sound channels at the same time. (I would be happy to describe this in more detail if anyone is interested.)

    The virtual nature of the display would let me move from 'sound board' to 'proc-amp' to 'switcher' to 'camera control in a liveset' all on one surface. It could work independently or display contextually related controls for the section of the TriCaster I am currently focused on.

    It could also work really well for punching in presets items - automated fader transitions, virtual camera zooms, show bumpers, overlay effects, music cues, still slides, etc.

    Ray - I do like the Euphonix series and have used the MC Control with Logic Pro. I started out as a sound mixing engineer before I got into video, so I really do appreciate the benefits of working a real soundboard. While I would never dispute that physical control surfaces are great to use, they do have a few drawbacks - 1. they aren't cheap, 2. you need to lug them around, and 3. you need a place to set them up on site.

    At the end of the day, I see this as just an extension of what the TriCaster is already doing to the way we control it all.

    Thanks for all of the discussion on this. I recognize this is just my personal bias, so thanks for humoring me.

    -john
    John Mahoney
    GNURAL NET, Inc.
    Trenton, NJ 08691

    [email protected]
    http://www.gnuralnet.com

    Gear:
    Gnural Net LiveToAir, TC1, TC1LP, MDS1, TC8000, Cameras: NDIHX-PTZ1, PTZ Optics ZCAM 20x

  14. #14
    LiveSet Making Machine joseburgos's Avatar
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    No keep at it because if no interest is shown, it will never happen. Youngmonkey has a great midi interface plug-in for the TriCaster and Jef has shown some nice touchscreen interfaces for it. I believe I have also seen the touchscreen interface control an external USB mixer. You could as well use it to create your own switcher interface using again the youngmoney plug-in to do some of the things you already want. If anyone is going to make an app for the iPad, I would guess it would be youngmonkey. I would also look to Jef to be the first one to have a practical selling package as he is a big iPhone fan.
    Jose Burgos
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  15. #15
    Technical Account Manager - Channel Support
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    I have heard that the Wi-Fi on the iPad is very flaky(I'll find out tomorrow when mine shows up) I would hate for some one lose control of their show because of a bad Wi-Fi connection.
    Zane Condren
    Product and Vertical Market Manager - Digital Broadcast
    NewTek Inc.
    new.tk/call

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