I know that many of you already know this app, but as I am a really early adopter and a happy user, I thought I would share my thoughts, and some of my workflows with this fantastic app, which got an awesome free update just a few weeks ago. I believe in that we have to talk about what we use, to promote these very useful apps. This way even more people can try it and use it, and the developers can benefit from it too. In my opinion it is a kind of support from the user toward the developer. This little controller application comes from Paul Neyrinck and his team, and it is really something insanely great. I’ve tried almost all of the controller apps for the iPad in the past, and I wasn’t satisfied. Waste of money and time. Well, not with the V-control pro. It blows other controller apps out of the water!
First, a little setup for those who don’t know this app yet. It’s really easy, only a few minutes. First (obviously) you have to buy this app for the iPad. There are two versions in the app store: V-control free (limited functionality) and V-control pro (full app). The pro version is 49.99$, and for this, you’ve got it all! So, you have the app, then you need to go to Neyrinck’s website and download the Ney-Fi utility. It’s a free little utility that will connect your iPad (and V-control pro) to your DAW. Install it. Then we need to set up a few things in Pro Tools.
Launch Ney-Fi, then Pro Tools. In Pro Tools, go to Setup-Midi-Input Devices, here you can find three check boxes:
• Fully-featured Pro Tools control using HUI and Surround Panner protocols
• One-touch access to all automation modes per track
• Sends A-E level, mute and pre-post select control
• Fader-flip mode for sends
• Dual surround panner controls
• Plug-in editor with bypass, compare, and assign
• Stereo track level, peak hold, and clip metering. Double-tap to reset
• One touch group suspend and automation suspend
• Full transport control including pre-roll and post-roll
• Counter display with optional big counter display
• Mix and edit window display switch
• Scrub / Shuttle strip controller
• Numeric keypad window for locating
• “Modifier” buttons
• Cursor Diamond for zoom in/out control and edit navigation
• Mark in/Mark out controls
• Input/output assignment
• Marker create and select buttons
• Various window show/hide buttons
• Automation enable/disable controls
• Editing mode select buttons
• Editing tool select buttons
• Edit command buttons
And these functions are not promises, they are actually working! Flawlessly. But enough praise for now, let’s see some practical usage. V-control pro had a major update a few weeks ago, which gave us not only minor facelift of some gui elements, but a very practical new feature called V-Window. With this, you can control virtually everything within your DAW or even outside of it right from the iPad. Plugins, marker window, any sound card’s software monitor controller, etc.
(RME totalmix in V-window)
I have to tell you that this V-Window thing is very addictive. While you are able to choose what you want to see in V-Window, transport controls are still there at your fingertips, as well as the modifier keys and the counter. And you can switch back to “mix” view anytime you want with a simple touch. This new feature goes even further as we can adjust the V-Window screen: move, zoom, switch to fullscreen mode on iPad.
Probably the most basic operation here happens while the client is here to approve a mix or master. She/He sits in the sweetspot, while I’m controlling Pro Tools from the couch for example. This is easy as I only need the transport controls, some mute or solo and the markers obviously. Before this update, I used the keypad to recall the markers.
recalled marker 58. Now as we have the V-Window it’s even easier to execute this as I can have my marker window visible on the iPad’s screen.
Scrub/Shuttle. With a mouse, it’s a pain. With a trackball it’s getting better, but with V-control pro, it’s a dream. During editing sessions the setup goes like this: left hand side – iPad with V-control pro, middle – keyboard, right side – Kensington Expert mouse and Magic Trackpad. I know it may seem too complicated or cluttered, but this is an insanely powerful editing setup. Within the Neyrinck app in V-window select the Edit window, so the scrub/shuttle area is visible in front of you. Now with your left hand you can easily scrub/shuttle anytime with great precision and speed while with very little hand movement you’ve reached your keyboard, and your right hand operates the trackball and/or the trackpad. Besides the scrub/shuttle operation, from this window you can also change edit modes, tools, zoom sets, etc.
To be continued with more usage tips…