The TourBox Console is a relatively new device in the world of photography, (Released back in September of 2019), that promises to make your editing workflow more fluid & efficient. If you are currently working with Lightroom and Photoshop, this tool could be a game-changer for you.

Most of the time, working with editing programs is done with a back-and-forth process between the keyboard and the mouse or graphics tablet. TourBox promises to minimize and simplify this workflow through its small editing console.

The idea is similar to other solutions in the market such as Loupedeck and Palette Gear, with a single exception: TourBox can be controlled with a single hand, while the other remains on the mouse or a graphics tablet, performing different tasks. For instance, the device’s one-handed design means one hand can draw on a graphics tablet while the other uses the dials and buttons to control brush size, hardness, flow, and opacity.

This product review includes the input from two pro-photographers that have been working with the TourBox system for a while and already integrated the console into their workflow.

Tourbox Review SLR Lounge Lead

Who Is The TourBox Console For?

Gerard Santiago: “The specific demographic or targeted users of this device are focused on photographers, designers, and creatives who use Photoshop, Lightroom, and other software with complex adjustments and hotkeys. But actually, any user can use this device in nearly any software that they frequently use.”

Barbara Gancarek-Śliwińska: “I think it’s quite a good solution for photographers. It’s almost too simple for a professional graphic designer but it makes the workflow much easier.”

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TourBox Controls

The console packs three different types of dials and several buttons onto a device with USB-C port and USB 3.0 pass-through. The TourBox can be custom configured to control different adjustments using its special software. By simply matching the shortcut keys of the target software to TourBox, the user can operate whatever application you’re working with more easily and edit more efficiently. Whether it is a simple rotation or the press of a button, it can be set as a keyboard shortcut or built-in function of the TourBox console to meet the operating needs of various software in a more intuitive way.

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[Related Reading: Loupedeck CT – A Hands On Review Of The New Creative Tool]

Size and Weight

The TourBox is small and portable compared to its competition with 12cms wide and 386g of weight. This is a good solution to be placed on a desk or to be carried around in your gear bags since it’s so small. As a comparison, the popular Loupedeck is closer in size to a keyboard and may not be fully compatible with Photoshop, while the Palette Gear is a modular system with dials and sliders that can be purchased separately to expand the system. The small TourBox is capable of setting 42 convenient operations as keyboard shortcuts or built-in functions.

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TourBox Compatibility

The TourBox works on both Windows and Mac OS, is available for left-handed and right-handed users, and each of its buttons, knobs, and dials are fully customizable. In addition to reassigning functions, it is possible to fine-tune the speed, acceleration, and accuracy to suit your desired way of work.

TourBox´s software includes presets or shortcuts for diverse graphic design programs such as Photoshop, Lightroom, Illustrator, and Capture One. Also, for drawing software like Clip Studio Paint, Comic Studio, and SAI. Video and audio software, such as Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, After Effects, DaVinci, Adobe Audition, and C4D. However, you can modify or create your own presets for all of these applications, as well as other apps, such as the inclusion of Luminar 4.

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Firmware Updates

TourBox has recently released a new firmware update with a more consolidated focus on full optimization for a pleasant Lightroom experience. The firmware v2.0 includes improvements such as:

  • Control main functions in LR Basic Panel with the prime four buttons on TourBox.
    • Gerard Santiago: “First of all, I changed the primary buttons for my prioritized hotkeys. I know why the developers did this, but every user has their own preference. If it works, then it is a great adjustment. I love the added floating guide (DPAD HUB) by the way.”
  • Control the other nine sliders in LR Basic Panel with TourBox Dpad and its combinations.
    • Gerard Santiago: “This is always helpful and easy-to-use. It is quite a list of combinations, but it is very effective.”
  • Smartly control Lightroom H/S/L with TourBox wheels, switch among H/S/L, or select color adjustment.
    • Gerard Santiago: “I love that feature, but for me, I need to get used to it first.”
  • Adjust the sharpening amount and post-crop vignettes with buttons and wheels combinations.
    • Gerard Santiago: “I rarely use vignettes and sharpening, I do it separately in Photoshop. I changed it to other adjustments.”

As mentioned before, this device can be personalized according to the individual´s needs or settings for specific software such as Lightroom, which can be downloaded and explained here.

Check Out The Video Below For More Information:

What We Liked

Gerard Santiago: “In terms of the hardware, I love the simplicity, ergonomic, and portability of TourBox. For the software side, it has a user-friendly interface, totally customizable, and covers major features that can hasten your productivity. Lastly, it more affordable than the other competitors (Palette Gear, Loupedeck, etc.)

Barbara Gancarek-Śliwińska: “That I can make my own shortcut sets for Photoshop.

Tourbox Demo slr Lounge

What Could Be Better

Gerard Santiago: “During the earlier phase of the development of TourBox’s software console, a lot of features were missing. But on every update, it becomes better and improved. As of now, I wish they can cover more creator software presets, like for InDesign, After Effect, Premier, and more.

Barbara Gancarek-Śliwińska: “I did have issues with proper working after some Photoshop update. The device was almost unusable for months. Finally, it was fixed with the last update. But I would like not to have wait so long next time.

Tourbox Console

[Related Reading: Palette Review – A New Way To Make Adjustments In Post Without a Mouse]

Final Thoughts

The idea behind TourBox was enough to recently capture the attention of more than 1,400 backers on Kickstarter, bringing the campaign well beyond the original goal. As a new player in the market, it is expected that the device will keep improving with upgraded firmware, but so far, it has correctly proved its capabilities to facilitate the editing process.

Gerard Santiago: “I frequently used TourBox when I am working on Photoshop, Lightroom, After Effects, and Premier. When I started using TourBox, my workflow and productivity drastically increased. I usually use it with my left hand, while using a mouse or an interactive pen on my right. Because the TourBox is customizable, I can easily assign any combination of hotkeys or adjustments that I frequently used in the software. Of course, it takes time and practice to familiarize all combinations but I love the visual interface of the TourBox console so I can easily adapt for visual learner/users.

Barbara Gancarek-Śliwińska: “Overall I´m quite happy. I did get used to it very fast. So, if I have to work on my photos and I left my TourBox back in the studio I really miss it. It makes my work much faster. I like the weight of it, doesn’t move all around my desk. Having TourBox and my Wacom tablet connected makes great equipment for my workflow.

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So what do you think? Have you tested the TourBox console out yet? Do you own one? What do you like/dislike about it? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Check Pricing & Availability of the TourBox Console Here

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