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Fast triggering in production

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I work in live events and by nature they can be unpredictable. Mostly awards shows and I run differnt awards on different auxiliary timelines. Works great for me. I use production as my controller because I like to work that way and I am usually tied up in changes until very late in the day, post rehearsal and only just pre-show.

 What I want to do is this. I am running Timeline 1 and it has multiple pause points as I progress through nominees etc. I have points where I want camera to come in but I don't want this in Timeline 1 because I need to be able to choose when I use camera.

 So I have a timeline for my camera cues and run that when I need camera. It works.

However if I am running Timeline 1, I don't really want to move to another timeline and run that then have to shoot back to Timeline 1. So I thought maybe I could trigger the camera timeline with a key on my keyboard. Sure I could use a midi keyboard, but I would like to have the camera timeline cued by say F1 or C . I have tried to input these keys in the Trigger window but they are not accepted.

Anyone know a way to do this or even achieve the same in a different way?



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There's no built-in way to do what you want. It would be rather simple to make an external control app talking to WATCHMAKER through its network port to trigger those. That would then live in its own window, providing only the controls you need (e.g., press spacebar to trigger main timeline, and a few keytboard or on-screen buttons to trigger other timelines).



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Neil, please elaborate on what's holding you from using a midi-controller? Even for the smallest jobs I consider this to be a must-have. Just so great having all possible pip configs available under buttons you can clearly mark with a label (so you don't have to remember you have a 4:3 ppt pip under F3). And using a mouse or keyboard during show? Must have been 2009 that I've done this for the last time.


I'm in the same sort of shows as you are, therefor very curious about your reasons not to go the easy way.

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With reference to Mike's suggestion, MIDI buttons from audiovisualdevices.au is a nice, easy to use interface, on a laptop or touchscreen laptop. Freeware available from -



Just install MIDIYoke on the the laptop and on the Watchout PCs to enable MIDI Channel 1 on them, and Bob's your uncle!


Thomas Leong

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Thanks Mike. I think making an external control app, though it may be simple to you, is beyond my abilities. :blink:

Hey Walter yes I do use a midi keyboard to trigger timelines occasionally.My reason for this query was I already have a keyboard in front of me which I often am unable to relinquish due to last minute edits.Often name changes/additions, which require a regular keyboard. So I was just thinking in those scenarios it would be handy to me to have just the one keyboard..Also sometimes desk space is limited. By the way what midi controller do you use? I have an AKAI MPK25.

Thomas that is a great idea thanks. I shall explore this.

Thanks guys.

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Hey Neil, i use either a mkp40 or an oxygen8. And try to avoid changes after show start. But hey, we all know how it works. I do really try and demand at least 1,5mtr workspace. So I can accommodate my controller, keyboard, mouse and laptop ;-)

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I usually work in that kind of events you describe. My best choice so far is using a tiny Korg-Controller,  the one that has faders. Then i create an auxilary timeline on top with a live camera, and a fader assigned to the opacity. This cue is running all the time, so whenever i need to switch to camera i just push the fader to the top (plus i have control over the fade time).

This Korg controller is really basic, but a big pro is you can fit it anywhere, even in front of your keyboard.



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Hey D- I use the K70 and it is great. But thats what got me thinking......I already have a keyboard in front of me with lots of keys doing nothing....so it would be great to be able to use these keys to trigger timelines. Thanks Sergio- just looking at one now.And thanks for the tip.I usually run the entire timeline but just running an opacity control is much more useful.

Thanks all.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just as Sergio i use the Korg NanoKontroller. It lets me keep the live video input on standby witch means it´s on screen instantly as i move the fader to 100%.

With "Midioxse" and MidiYoke" installed i´m able to use a Korg NANOKey at the same time where i can map even more triggers.

This gives total flexibility.




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