Using the Tangent Elements and Ripple Color/Editing Control Surfaces in Adobe Premiere Pro CC 2017
I've had a chance to work with both the "full meal deal" of the Tangent Elements panel or "colorist's surface" and the new, smaller Ripple unit for a few months now. I love both of them ... though, you do get a lot more with the Elements panel, as befits something literally ten times the cost. Here's a pic of them sitting on my desk at the moment, so you can get a very good idea of relative size. The monitors are 24-inch models for comparison.
The Elements is just over 30 inches wide if you've got all four sections, and the Ripple is just over a foot wide. Note the way the Elements can easily sit in a narrow area in front of my monitors on the edge of the desk ... I actually find that pretty comfortable to work with. (And I only use the small Bluetooth keyboard when working with the Ripple, just for space.)
The Elements surface has a very nifty feature for getting used to it ... see the little tabs above each section with the white writing on them? Those are screens ... they show what each control is doing at this moment in this active section of the software you're using this with. This surface is scary at first with four balls & rings, twelve spinning knobs, and twenty four un-marked buttons (not counting the twenty-one marked buttons!) ... but those screens make it easy to learn what this does, how to move the panel between program sections with the controls of the panel, and ... to get past thinking of what the buttons & knobs do to just doing stuff them. Any time you switch sections of the Lumetri panel by pushing the buttons on my far left, all the other screens immediately change to display what's mapped out to all the other controls.
I'm a lefty, and I've got the four Elements sections arranged to my liking. Righty's tend to have them mostly reversed from this picture.
The smaller Ripple unit (shown next to the keyboard) doesn't have near the complexity. And during operation, when you touch any control on it, a little box pops up on your monitor showing what each control does at this moment. Which ... is darn handy when learning, especially as ... you're going to want to re-map this to suit your own needs and working preferences. You can of course set the "heads-up display" box to the size and location of your desires, or turn it off when you no longer need it.
I use them primarily within Adobe's Premiere Pro CC2017. The first Premiere Pro CC version they were usable with was 2015.3. They also work with SpeedGrade 2015.1, the last version of that application currently available.
Adobe has "removed" the Direct Link connection between this newest Premiere Pro version and SpeedGrade CC2015.1, so the ability to use the panels within that application also is rather more necessary than just "nice" at times. To grade (color correct) your media within an Adobe multiverse, you either use Premiere Pro's Color workspace and the rather nifty Lumetri panel, or do an old-style EDL export out, import that and your media clips into SpeedGrade, export the clips out of there, re-import into Premiere Pro and finish with titles & such.
Or, you can work in the older PrPro version 2015.2 to use the Direct Link process between Premiere Pro & SpeedGrade. (There is a third-party application that converts Premiere Pro CC2015.3/cc2017 project files into files usable within SpeedGrade CC2015.1 from NTown Productions for purchase as another option.)
Given the new capabilities of the Lumetri workspace, including a very nice Secondary section, and the ability to use colorist surfaces within PrPro, how does this ... work? Within especially Premiere Pro CC2017?
In all, very, very well ... for the most part. With a few caveats I'll cover in later posts, the "trip" from the 2015.2 version to (now) 2017 is a big upgrade, between the combination of a few new Lumetri "tricks" but mostly the ability to use colorist surface controls. And for many users, the use of the control surfaces within Lumetri will overcome the loss of the easy trip to SpeedGrade and back.
And for now, which surface I'd recommend? Both! I'll cover the "why" in my next post.