Euphonix MC-Color

I was given a prototype by the great guys and girls at Euphonix, notably JC. I put the unit through its paces before it was released.

I had the opportunity to also test the ‘Wave’ here.

At first I thought I needed something the size of the wave as it allowed me to lay my arms on it in a natural way and let my fingers ‘dangle’ this was great, but I quickly realized that the it took up my whole desk.

Enter the new ‘Wave’, the MC color… Wait, what ?

Anyhow, the first thing that struck me, even though this was a pre production version, was the build quality and overall smart design.

It isn’t a huge unit, and you simply don’t need it to be, the layout and ergonomics let you really work fast, really fast. Although I do have quite a bit of experience with color correction control surfaces, this is really quite refreshing, It basically does what the DaVinci did until they recently revamped their entire line. Indeed, ‘color’ does remind me of the early “Resolve” software.

I have the unit laid out with a small apple keyboard in front of it. I sacrificed the larger keyboard to have this new setup.

Setting up is easy, But only worked with one of the ways suggested, again this might have been the beta software I was using. Anyhow, I plugged in the crossover cable into the back of my mac, and it recognized it within seconds.

I fiddled with the different settings in color and on the unit, I found that low numbers on the unit ( in terms of sensitivity & tracking etc) and then adjusting the controller options in color gave me more satisfactory results. If I did the opposite ( high numbers of sensitivity on the unit, low on the software) I found that it was ‘jittery’ and too responsive when making small adjustments. However, I never got it ‘wrong’ and it was interesting to see how I changed the sensitivity over the time I grew accustomed to the unit.

The controllers themselves are just great. Great feeling, easy to pop out and clean ( why is LA so damn dusty).

After a while of playing with it, I started to realize why certain buttons were mapped where. And it’s pretty smart. It is always combinations of both hands that allow you to really flow at a good speed. At times I felt like an athlete in the ‘zone’… A 210lbs athlete that is expert at sitting down….

However, back to the 2 hand thing. When I get to the secondary screen, I find my left hand selects that I want to select it, and then my right hand can switch on vignette, then the next button is to set it outside. You will notice a rhythm that you get into, and it’s fast.

One thing to note, the wave does actually show MORE on its screens, than the mc-color, which is a shame as it is the exact point of having a control surface like this. The Wave has a top and a bottom half to each display, and also has more buttons; 3 for each of the 3 sections. That is quite a bit more control and quite a lot more display. However, on the euphonix there is a ‘show me’ button, which brings up what is assigned to the buttons, but it kinda misses the point. BUT there was a potential fix !! So, with a bit of thought, I made a cool little addition, that I recommended that Euphonix make as a cheap ad-on, have a look here.

One other downside is the fact that when you are working it is easy to have the ‘shift’ buttons pressed and not know it as your wrists completely cover them up whilst working. Its not something that happens when demoing the unit, but sometimes when you are working at speed, you don’t notice that you’ve tapped one on, and things all start going wonky. At first you think, “wait, are we crashing?”, did something happen? At this point, I usually raise my arms away from the control surface, as I’m about to cry, and then see the shift lights…”ahh, ok, no need to cry THIS time”

I heard earlier reports of the Eucon software crashing, however, I have to report that this unit get used all the time and I’ve never had it crash
UPDATE: the new version has crashed once on me, but that was it.

There are videos of me featured on the Euphonix website, and a feature of me there too.

I highly recommend this unit.

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