I've wanted virtual midi keypad show control for a while. I wanted to assign channels, rename buttons, theme actions by color, etc. Basically, I wanted a show control I could customize for each show that would output a midi signal Watchout Production could understand and output to my display machines. Well, after a morning of hunting and testing, I think I found a pairing that does the trick. So, for those of you without a midi show controller OR who have been looking for a virtual solution, here is one that is currently working for me:
LoopBe1 – Virtual Midi Driver
$14 Commercial (Free for Personal Use / Testing)
AVD “Midi Buttons” – Configurable Midi Controller Keypad
Free for Personal and Commercial use.
Install LoopBe1 and it will create a virtual midi device on your computer that essentially listens for a midi show controller to send it information. Then, just open Midi Buttons and start configuring your cues. It definitely takes some configuration but, it does work and really breaks you out of Watchout's "Task" window. Here was a button configuration that worked for me inside of Watchout: (ensure you set Output1 to LoopBe and set it to Active in the configuration window)
Press / Release
(all other details same as above)
Add a new Midi Note Input and have it "learn" that button. You should see channel 1 and note 2 listed. Now, assign the input to a task and watch it work. I tested this on a Windows 7 machine running WO 5.5. There are obvious drawbacks like not having sliders or being able to halt aux timelines with the stop button in the WO task window but, I get a fullscreen show control to customize that could even work on a touchscreen monitor if configured correctly.