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Contour Design ShuttlePRO V2
4.4 4.4 out of 5, based on 2 Reviews

The ShuttlePro is a handy device that will help speed up your workflow and avoid repetitive point-and-click operations in the music-making process.

30th March 2012

Contour Design ShuttlePRO V2 by MechanEvil

  • Sound Quality 5 out of 5
  • Ease of use 4 out of 5
  • Features 4 out of 5
  • Bang for buck 4 out of 5
  • Overall: 4.25
Contour Design ShuttlePRO V2

Nothing can be more inimical to smooth work flow in your DAW than having to disrupt an operation in order to point and click on a tool, audition a segment or pull up the mixer. The ShuttlePro V2 is a handy device that will help speed up the process of recordng, editing and mixing your music. It's not just limited to audio software, it has a lot of functionality with video editing too. And it might help you avoid carpal tunnel syndrome to boot.

Out of the box

The ShuttlePro V2 was a lot bigger than I thought it would be when I took it out of the box. I was expecting something the size of a mouse, but it's far larger, maybe the length and width of four standard USB mice side by side, though far less thick. Just about perfect to lay your hand on at an appropriate position to control the top row of five buttons and a second row just below that of five buttons. There's more: the device sports a jog wheel as well as a spring loaded shuttle wheel with two buttons on the left and right of it and four buttons below it. It has no power supply, just connect to the USB port on your PC or Mac and the device driver will automatically load.

Inside the box, there's a helpful sheet of cut-outs to stick under the plastic caps for the 10 buttons on top, depending on what function you have assigned to them. While there are standard cutouts like play, record, etc, there are also some blank cut-outs in case you want to assign more advanced functions to these buttons. And if you run out, you can get a printable sheet of cutouts from the company website, which is really nice. There's also a driver CD and a mini-manual in the box. However, the manual is not very comprehensive, touching upon only the basic features of the device and it makes sense to download the complete user guide from the company website as well.

Driver integration

This was the major let down for me on this device: its supposed to recognise what software window you have open and automatically load a preset configuration for helping you with your workflow. However, I could not get it to do so in Windows 7 64-bit, even though the company's driver download says it can do so. I've noticed that other users have also had this issue, but not all of them. At the same time, this does not affect the ShuttlePro's functionality in any way. The application shortcut in the system try can be pulled up quite easily and I was able to load the configuration for whatever software I was using.

Super tweakable

Once the initial wow factor of the preset configurations wore off, I set about programming the ShuttlePro for my own purposes. Assigning a function to a button is as simple as programming it to a keyboard shortcut in your software. This is actually pretty awesome and goes far beyond the standard "one preset per programme" idea that I initially bought the device for. Instead, imaging having different presets for recording, editing and mixing on a single DAW software. Also, having features like a jog wheel and shuttle wheel that would normally be available only in higher end devices is priceless.

My 2 cents

The ShuttlePro is a handy device that will help speed up your workflow and avoid repetitive point-and-click operations in the music-making process, which can often disrupt the entire process and make it time-consuming and tedious. At under $90, it is quite affordable and could easily find a place in most studios looking for an alternative to a mouse in certain situations. The only drawback I found was the driver issue, which means that it might not be able to auto-detect the software being used for everyone. Still, given that I did not suffer from any sub-optimal performance while using the device itself, I would say the device's benefits clearly outweigh this drawback.

NB: I apologise for the review score of 10 for sound quality. For some reason, I could not post if I made it n/a.