Take full control of your computer, speed up your workflow and eliminate repetitive tasks with Shuttle Pro. This device give you control of almost any aspect of your daily tasks on your computer. Almost any action or chain of actions that can be done with a mouse or keyboard, can be programmed on Shuttle Pro.
I will talk about this controller device from a design point of view although it can be used for any software you have installed on your computer. I use it mostly with Photoshop and occasionally with Camtasia which is the software I use when editing my videos.
ShuttlePRO V2 is a USB controller compatible with Mac and Windows that allows you to program keyboard shortcuts and other actions with the purpose of speeding up your workflow.
It’s not really a substitute for a mouse because it cannot move your cursor but with it’s 15 Express keys and 2 wheels you can program almost anything on it. The built quality of the Shuttle Pro is solid enough and the materials are good quality.
It’s not plug and play, you must install a driver which you can find on the Contour Design website. It’s a very ergonomic device and its greatest advantage is the advanced customization features it comes with.
Speed up your design workflow with ShuttlePRO V2
After installing the drivers you will notice that its buttons are already comes configured for many editing programs especially for the Adobe package but also for internet browsers. You can add any program you have installed on your machine.
ShuttlePRO works amazingly as a complement for a graphics Tablet. Most tablets have configurable keys but usually there are only a few buttons and you will end up having to also use your keyboard.
The advantage of ShuttlePRO is that it’s a lot smaller than a keyboard. Yet it has enough keys to allow you to program lots of keyboard shortcuts and actions.
Getting used to it and integrate it on your workflow is just like with a graphics tablet, it takes a while but the learning process is quite intuitive once you remember the functions you assigned to it.
Remembering the functions of each key is easy because the device comes with a printed sheet with labels for the most common actions, such as: save, undo, record, paste, open, etc. There is even a blank template so you can write your own actions.
Simply break the labels and put them inside the buttons under the plastic cap and done. The fact that is not a sticky method allows you to change these labels at any time.
This is the strongest feature of the ShuttlePro V2. The top buttons can be programmed to perform a specific action or set of actions. You can do much more than programming a simple keyboard shortcut. Shuttle Pro V2 can run Macros, which essentially is a set of actions to be performed.
If you want, you can even use this as a text expander, which is useful for emails or when you have to use blocks of text over and over again on your documents.
Great graphic tablet under $80
Lots of new tablets and brands are now available on the market and sometimes can be hard to choose one. In this article I will review a very cheap but pretty surprising tablet: the Gaomon M106K
Creating a new function for Photoshop
ShuttlePRO has the lower keys assigned to opening adjustments such as Levels or Curves when pressing them. However, I like to work with layers instead of applying the adjustments destructively on the image.
In order to create a function for creating a new adjustment layer when pressing a button on ShuttlePRO, I had to go into Photoshop’s preferences. Then I had to assign a keyboard shortcut for each adjustment layer I needed (by default Photoshop does not have keyboard shortcuts for creating new Adjustment Layers).
After creating the custom keyboard shortcuts (any weird unused shortcut will do) I assigned a button on the ShuttlePRO to perform them at the press of a button. Now I can add my adjustment layers without using the menus. This action speeds up my workflow with few seconds.