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This little baby will change the way you work in Photoshop.
The NuLOOQ Professional Series is a USB input gizmo and mini-application that's innovative, slightly addictive, and changes the way you work - for the better, that is.
Logitech developed NuLOOQ in cahoots with Adobe as a productivity-enhancing Adobe CS2 tool (it was recently expanded for use with Photoshop Elements 4 and, theoretically, any app for which you care to configure it). The solid, well-made USB device, the NuLOOQ navigator, resembles a knob controller with an iPod-like clickwheel.
The gray plastic midsection of the navigator, known as the navring, has just enough give that you can either twist or nudge it a few millimeters in any direction, and we found the navring to be the most useful part of the NuLOOQ navigator. Twisting the ring zooms in or out and nudging it pans across the photo, layout, or illustration. The clickwheel on top of the NuLOOQ navigator has buttons on its north and south ends that call up application-specific tool parameters. Three buttons across the wheel can be programmed to access frequently used tools. The touch-sensitive wheel (also called the tooltuner) is used to make parameter adjustments. For example: You can select Photoshop's rubber stamp with your mouse, call up master diameter using the top navigator button, and adjust diameter by swiping your finger along the perimeter of the top wheel. It sounds complicated, particularly when you consider that you're using your nonmousing hand, but it's easy to operate.
The included NuLOOQ tooldial software (also sold separately) is a key part of the NuLOOQ system. Completely customizable, the tooldial is a small wheel with eight wedges, each of which contains a frequently used tool. Some tools are associated with extended menus, which you can activate to reveal as many as eight submenus in a ring around the tooldial. Using a customizable key combination (or a navigator or mouse button), you call up the tooldial wherever your cursor is onscreen. You can configure multiple tooldials for use within your CS2 or other applications.
The NuLOOQ system is supposed to promote efficiency - you're not traversing the vast territory of your monitor to select tools and parameters. It didn't take long to learn how to use it with Photoshop and InDesign CS2, but it takes longer to integrate it into your standard workflow and routine. While we found NuLOOQ useful, we didn't find it as indispensable as a tablet.
The bottom line. NuLOOQ is nifty, and can be a handy time-saving gadget. Do you have the time, patience, and motivation to introduce another device into your creative toolkit? If so, it could be the beginning of a beautiful relationship.
With the NuLOOQ tooldial, software tools are just a click away.
CONTACT: 800-231-7717, www.logitech.com
PRICE: $79.99 (controller and software), $19.99 (software only)
REQUIREMENTS: Mac OS 10.4.4 or later for controller, Mac OS 10.3.9 or later for software, 1GB of RAM, 50MB disk space
Well made. Easy to learn for Adobe apps. Customizable. A potential boost to productivity.
Requires practice and changes the way you work.