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Help me out with a new controller purchase! Other Controllers
Old 13th September 2011
  #1
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sftd's Avatar
 

Help me out with a new controller purchase!

Hi guys, I consider the mouse the single most important element of my production room (not to mention hands down my favourite controller!) overall, but I'm getting a bit bored with the feel/shape of my current one and was wondering if anybody would have some ideas concerning the purchasing of a new one.

I won't be using it for anything other than music production and day-to-day computer navigation. (meaning, I don't play games or do graphic design or anything like that, so that's not a focus!)

I currently use a Logitech G9x that has performed amazingly for almost a year and a half now. Nothing is wrong with it, I'm just a bit bored with the feel.

My requirements are as follows:

Adjustable DPI (from the mouse itself) with a maximum of no less than 3000. I would prefer to have the DPI increments that are selectable from the mouse to be editable via software.

Aaaaaand thats it.

I would prefer to have a weight adjustment system like the cartridges the Logitech gaming series use, but it's not absolutely necessary.

I obviously want something shaped fairly differently than the G9x (although technically it was two interchangeable "grips") but simultaneously don't want to make a step down in performance.

Budget is unlimited (assuming that a mouse won't exceed $500 USD)

Thanks for any help!

OH! One more thing!

Does anyone have any experience substituting a high-end lightpen/tablet combo for either general mouse duties or specifically for music production? I was pondering how neat it would be to use one for drawing automation so I ran to Walmart last night to see if they had one, and they did, but unfortunately it seems to be a very low end model ("Bamboo"?) and includes no pen. It is essentially just a larger glorified trackpad and satisfied no part of my curiosity. Adding to that, I just checked Best Buy's website for models they might carry in store but they don't show my local locations stocking any of them so I'd like to know if there is anything to my idea before ordering one. I hate ordering things in general.
Old 13th September 2011
  #2
Gear Nut
 

Tablets are great, however it will be very very awkward at the start. You can't really see what you are drawing, most people look at paper when they write or draw, so looking away at the screen and using a pen will be very unnatural. They do however have lots of assignable buttons (the higher end models at least do, the bamboo is not really recommended), and lots of features. I would recommend nothing smaller than a 6x8, but that is still small for monitors over 19". Many of the Wacom tablets come with a "mouse" as well as a pen.

I would also avoid mice that have the ball bearing wheels. I have a logitech with one, and it's glitchy, as it gets older when I pick it up and set it down it activates the wheel, which can really mess stuff up and do things you don't intend.
Old 13th September 2011
  #3
Here for the gear
 

Hey

I was in a similar boat to you - without a paddle - and found a pretty handy guide here Buying A MIDI Controller - A Helpful Guide | Music Matter. I ended up with a Maschine controller (plus the software of course) because that can be reprogrammed as well. I created a template for Cubase with it, which works really well.

Hope that helps dude.
Old 13th September 2011
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MIDIFrank View Post
Hey

I was in a similar boat to you - without a paddle - and found a pretty handy guide here Buying A MIDI Controller - A Helpful Guide | Music Matter. I ended up with a Maschine controller (plus the software of course) because that can be reprogrammed as well. I created a template for Cubase with it, which works really well.

Hope that helps dude.
Hi, thanks for the link but I didn't see any mentions of mice in that guide. Could you help me by directing me to the section concerning mice?

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Old 13th September 2011
  #5
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I always like the Razer mouses. I have 3 different ones because they are relatively cheap. They key is to get a good surface, they make those too.

I have the Naga, it's made for MMO games and has 12 thumb buttons you can use to make custom macros with. An enterprising person could really leverage it with the right software.
Old 13th September 2011
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sftd View Post
Hi, thanks for the link but I didn't see any mentions of mice in that guide. Could you help me by directing me to the section concerning mice?

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If you aren't using a trackball, you might as well be playing hardware.
Old 13th September 2011
  #7
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At the very minimum that little entry there by Mr. MIDI should illustrate the effect that vendors disguised as members and the misinformation resulting thereof have on a community like this one.

You can tell he payed close attention to my post and was very enthusiastic in helping me overcome a problem that he too had experienced!

Whatever my choice may end up being I should definitely make my purchase from the site he linked since he was so helpful.

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Old 13th September 2011
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by razorblade View Post
If you aren't using a trackball, you might as well be playing hardware.
As a child I always hated trackballs but I hadn't used on in many years until perhaps a month ago at which time I bought one to use with my laptop in situations where it was hard to move a mouse around.

And then I remembered I hated them all over again!

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Old 13th September 2011
  #9
Lives for gear
To me one of the most important features of a mouse are programmable side buttons. Some of the cheapies also come with these buttons, but they aren't programmable and can only be used as forward/backward arrows for website navigation. All the mid-price and up Logitech mice come with software that allows you to customize the buttons.
Old 13th September 2011
  #11
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d1rtynyc's Avatar
What about the other hand.
I just got one of these and it has really improved my workflow.
Contour Design | ShuttlePRO v2 | retail.contourdesign.com

You can get it for about $80 when not buying direct.
Contour Design ShuttlePRO v2 - NLE Multimedia 00498-0 B&H Photo

IMO this will expand your control options is a flash.

For a mouse, I have this mouse and I love it:
Logitech - Performance Mouse MX
Old 13th September 2011
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sftd View Post
As a child I always hated trackballs but I hadn't used on in many years until perhaps a month ago at which time I bought one to use with my laptop in situations where it was hard to move a mouse around.

And then I remembered I hated them all over again!

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But your improved finger dexterity will make you popular with the ladies.
Old 13th September 2011
  #13
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sftd's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wax808 View Post
I always like the Razer mouses. I have 3 different ones because they are relatively cheap. They key is to get a good surface, they make those too.

I have the Naga, it's made for MMO games and has 12 thumb buttons you can use to make custom macros with. An enterprising person could really leverage it with the right software.
Ok so I checked this thing out (the Naga). Is it comfortable??

--

Amazing as that shuttle pro looks, which still may get it purchased, I would probably never use it because I'm so used to the keyboard at this point

But I didn't know it existed either, so thank you!

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Old 13th September 2011
  #14
Hey sftd

Amazon.com: Logitech Cordless Desktop MX 5500 Revolution Bluetooth Laser Mouse & Keyboard Combo - 920-000383 (Black): Electronics


Done.

EDIT: A bit more information.

About 6 months ago, I had nearly reached my limit. The amount of mice I had bought and returned was nearing double digits. My requirements (I thought) were simple: a comfortable mouse for my big hands (I'm a righty btw), with lots of buttons, side scrolling, bluetooth (as a laptop user, my USB ports are a precious resource and musn't be wasted), and a charging dock (helps with the weight issue/saves money down the road). OH, and it must be compatible with OSX.

The last one should be simple. A mouse is a mouse, right? WRONG!

It seems that every manufacturer out there has loads of proprietary software written to make their mouse work beautifully with Windows, but only apple does such things with their own hardware. I couldn't handle the awful scroll ball on my mighty mouse, and while the magic mouse looked cute, it was far too small for my hands and lacked BUTTONS!

After trying almost every offering from Razer, Logitech, and others, i stumbled upon this beautiful, sexy combo: the MX5500. It's bluetooth, and though it comes with a USB dongle, it's not mandatory (your built-in bluetooth will work fine). The mouse is just about the perfect size, shape, and weight for my hands, and the keyboard is light and has a great feel. It's wonderful being able to push my laptop to the back of my desk and work off my second monitor using the wireless keyboard and mouse. And although logitech's proprietary mapping software is for Windows only, there exists a lovely little piece of software, called steermouse:

http://download.cnet.com/SteerMouse/...1_4-76439.html

which does wonderful things for making all those side buttons you bought useful.

YMMV as always. To me this was THE combo, and saved the suicide hotline hours of time by not having to listen to me complain about how the only bluetooth mice were designed for mobile users (and were therefor far too small/simple for my needs) or how for all their advanced features, side scrolling seems lost on every Razer product.

A side note: if you don't need bluetooth, your options increase exponentially!
Old 13th September 2011
  #15
OH, and a side note about tablets:

Several of my friends are animators/graphic designers. The only surface they'll even consider is one of Wacom's interactive displays, for the reasons stated above.

Global Sites

Mandatory? No. Expensive? You bet. Does it look cool in your studio?
Old 14th September 2011
  #16
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Really depends what kind of grip you use. if you use a claw grip then steelseries xai is as good as it gets. I use it mainly for gaming and it was by far the most accurate and comfy afte r trying 4 or 5. For everyday stuff it may be overkill but hey this is gearslutz so you need it of course.
Edit: sorry for lazy typing Im writing this on an ipad.
Old 14th September 2011
  #17
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Also as someone who owns a wacom a4 tablet for computer painting I really wouldnt recommend it for music production.
movements that you can do by a flick of fingers with a mouse take a big armstroke or wriststroke on a tablet and it would get triring and cumbersome very quickly.
Old 14th September 2011
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lysander View Post
Also as someone who owns a wacom a4 tablet for computer painting I really wouldnt recommend it for music production.
movements that you can do by a flick of fingers with a mouse take a big armstroke or wriststroke on a tablet and it would get triring and cumbersome very quickly.
Well, it depends on what you use the tablet for. I use it to write scores in Sibelius 7 and it works great! Finally an input system that feels natural to us older composers who grew up with pencils, erasers and music sheets.
Old 14th September 2011
  #19
Gear Addict
 

If this is Gearslutz then this is the most chastity-belt wearing, bible-thumping, self-loathing and utterly prudish thread of all time!

Please somebody start a thread about Cwejman modules and Eventides...STAT!
Old 14th September 2011
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaPi61 View Post
Well, it depends on what you use the tablet for. I use it to write scores in Sibelius 7 and it works great! Finally an input system that feels natural to us older composers who grew up with pencils, erasers and music sheets.
Good point actually, I haven't tried it for score writing but I can see it being quite nice.
However for turning knobs on a virtual instrument, and all the usual stuff you do in a DAW I really think it would be quite horrible. But YMMV.
Old 14th September 2011
  #21
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sftd's Avatar
 

To be honest on the tablet front the only thing that piqued my curiosity was automation drawing.

I can see how the gains made there may not be worth the sacrafices elsewhere.

I've ordered a Naga to give it a shot so we'll see how it feels!

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