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Griffin Technology NA16029 PowerMate USB Multimedia Controller

3.7 out of 5 stars 270 customer reviews
| 66 answered questions

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  • Control Knob
  • Use PowerMate to speedily shuttle through large multimedia files, spreadsheets, word processor documents, great for DJing.
  • Connect as many as 127 PowerMates and assign an independent function to each of them
  • Comes with presets for a wide range of applications, and easy-to-follow instructions for adding your own
  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year
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Frequently Bought Together

  • Griffin Technology NA16029 PowerMate USB Multimedia Controller
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  • Griffin PowerMate Multi-Media Control Knob with Bluetooth Connectivity - Wirelessly control your Mac from Volume to Key Commands
Total price: $99.90
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Product Description

Griffin NA16029 Powermate USB Multimedia Controller

Product Information

Product Dimensions 3.1 x 3.1 x 2.4 inches
Item Weight 3.5 ounces
Shipping Weight 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
ASIN B003VWU2WA
Item model number NA16029
Customer Reviews
3.7 out of 5 stars 270 customer reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #106 in Electronics > Accessories & Supplies > Computer Accessories > USB Gadgets
Date first available at Amazon.com July 16, 2010

Warranty & Support

Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

I have had one of these in daily operation since they were first released. I'm not sure when that was, but mine is certainly well over ten years old. It's reliable and just as smooth as the day I got it.

Wen most people see it sitting next to my trackpad, they ask about it and it's a little hard to describe, even with a demo. Yes, it seems it's most frequently purchased by folks that are looking for a handy way to control iTunes, and it's worth the money if you just do that, but what a lot of people do not realize is it's a multifunction input device that can be extremely useful in almost every application.

Someone at Griffin finally put out a new version of the software for Mac (I do not have any experience using this with Windows except the rare occasion when I run Win 7 virtualized) and it was a giant leap forward for an already super productive little dial.

The first thing you need to know if you have never had your hands on on is that the dial is free spinning like a shuttle dial n a high end video deck. It also has a "button" press input when you press the entire dial down. You can also turn right or left while pressing down. So right out of the box you have: clockwise, counter-clockwise, press, press and hold, press and turn right, press and turn left.

Now the really fun part, with the software, you can setup a myriad of keyboard functions on these controls. And if those six options don't cover your frequently used operations, you can add any combination of the modifier keys. For example, Control+Right = Zoom in. Control + Left = Zoom Out.

The most obvious use is keyboard shortcuts. In my rss reader I have PowerMate setup to scroll up and down in an article by turning. Go to next article on press. Add to Instapaper on Press and Hold.
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I wanted something to enable me to quickly do specific tasks within various programs, whether it be scrolling, zooming, switching between 20 open files, etc. I decided to get this and try it out, and it works perfect for my needs. The software interface is simple, and you use it to program how the knob works on a per-program basis. I use this for a variety of programs so my review isn't touching on specific programs, but I'll go over the highlights and some tech stuff.

The Driver Issues:

Folks are having what they believe to be driver issues, but there's a misconception here. This hardware doesn't come with or need any "driver" which Windows doesn't already have. Specifically, the powermate uses HIDUSB.SYS which is a default Windows driver for all Human Interface Devices, such as mice, trackballs, keyboards, etc.. Aside from this default OS driver, the only thing the powermate requires is the program itself (along with the plugins it comes with), which runs as a memory-resident program.

What might be occuring is the program may not function well with Windows 7, I haven't tried it yet on my Windows 7 system. However, what I believe is most likely the actual problem, is how Windows 7 uses HID USB devices, as it's a smidge different from XP. There's a different level of security intepretation when software is run. I will update the review once I test this on Windows 7, but as a general rule of thumb, try this:

* Run the powermate program (powermate.exe) in Administrator Mode (right-click, choose Run as Administrator..)

* Make sure the powermate is plugged into a usb2/3 port which has full power available, you can always try a different port (don't use USB extension cables!)

More to follow..
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I bought this device to use as part of a home automation project. It's connected to an OS X server, and it works quite well. I've explored the features of the software, and it's quite nice. You can do a lot of things with it, but the main idea is that you can program actions on the PowerMate (any or all of the six possibilities: press, long press, turn left, turn right, press and turn left, press and turn right--or any of these plus modifier keys like Shift or Control, so you actually have many more possibilities) to do just about anything: press a keystroke (possibly the most common use), adjust something like volume or do a play/pause, or even launch an AppleScript. (The last one is quite handy for my purposes--controlling Philips Hue via a Python script I wrote that I launch with appropriate parameters via an AppleScript--but the possibilities are just about endless.) You can configure different sets of actions depending on the active application (so maybe pressing the button in iTunes does a play/pause, but pressing in Word does a paste action), and you can also configure "global" actions that aren't tied to a specific application.

Some other nice things: the software can control more than one PowerMate. I have two, one for two different rooms, and you can choose which action sets go with which device. With the software, you can also control the blue LED. I found the default of full brightness a bit too much, so I turned it down. You can also make it pulse, but you can only control the rate (it still pulses from dim to full brightness, which I don't like) or tie the brightness of the LED to something on the system like volume level or CPU load. The bottom of the PowerMate has a non-slip silicone pad that makes it good for sitting on desks without moving around during use.
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