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Electronic Theatre Controls Inc

Working with Tabs on Ion and Element

Tabs, introduced in version 1.9 of software for Ion, are a useful tool in arranging and organizing data on the console.  

Much of this information has been drawn from the article: Eos-Ion Displays Conventions

Using Tabs

Both Eos and Ion use a tab metaphor for displays.  All displays open in a tab, the name and number of which are displayed across the bottom of the display the tab opens on.  Each display has an associated number, which can be used for selection purposes, as illustrated below:

Tab Numbers.png

Tab Navigation

When a display is selected, it is bounded in gold with the label of the display is also highlighted in gold.  Focus is now on that display and the command line is routed to editing the contents of that display.  

Focus can be placed on a tab by: 

  • Pressing the associated button, such as:
    • Live
    • [Effect] [Effect]
    • [Displays] {Patch}
  • Selecting the display by number:
    • [Tab] & [2] ZZZ

      Note that while pressing and holding the Tab key, the text "Tab" and the numbers entered appear immediately above the CIA, as illustrated below. 


  • Selecting the display by sequential presses of the tab key.  This advances the tab in focus by one display for each press of [Tab]. ZZZ

Displays can also be opened or selected from the browser.  Press the [Displays] key and scroll down to {Record Target Lists}.  Use the [Page ⇒] or [Page ⇐] keys (which are placed in scroll lock mode automatically) to expand and contract the file structures).  Highlight the display that you wish to open and press [Select] (or you can double-click the selection). 

Some Tabs Remain Open

The Live/Blind display is always open, and always Tab 1.  Playback Status is always open, and always Tab 2.  These displays can be covered with other displays, or moved to other screens, but they cannot be closed.  The [Live] or [Blind] button can be used to pull focus to the Live/Blind display, or you can tab to it using [Tab] + [1].


Note:  If the system detects a single monitor system, a third tab is automatically posted; that display is a "Split" view, and ½ showing channels and ½ showing the PSD.  Again, like tabs 1 and 2, tab 3 cannot be closed. As other displays are opened, they use the lowest available number. 

Tabs Available and How to Open Them

List views/editors of all record targets can be opened by double clicking the record target button.  [Effect] [Effect] opens the effect list and editor.  [Color Palette] [Color Palette] opens a list view of color palettes.   It is possible from there to select a record target press {Edit} to enter a blind view for that target.  Many people assume this is the only way to access a blind view for non-cue record targets.  This isn't the case.  At any time, it is possible to:  [Blind] [Sub] [1] [Enter] (for example), to go into blind for Submaster 1.

Some displays do not have an associated front panel button.  Those displays are accessed as softkeys under the [Displays] key.  This includes Patch, the Color Picker, Effect Status Display, Setup, Curves and the Browser.   Of these displays, only Patch and Curves opens a tab display.  The remainder of these displays open in the CIA (central information area just above the main keypad) - they are not "modes", but rather are programming tools. 

Multiple Live/Blind Screens

Live/Blind can have multiple views open (Eos only).  This allows you to have (as an example) your main live view in one mode (channel summary for example, in show channels mode) and another view of live in a different view (table view, in selected channels flexi mode).    Opening a second live/blind display must be done from the browser.  Under displays, there is a selection for live/blind.  If you click on that, an option to open "New" is displayed below.   It is worth noting that if you have multiple instances of live/blind opened, the Live/Blind button will advance sequentially through these - which is one way to put focus on the additional instances of those displays.  You can also use [Tab] & [n] to bring focus to them. 

The PSD can also have multiple views open (Eos). Displays can be moved from one screen to the next by placing focus on that display and then using [Tab] & Page ⇒] or [Tab] & [Page ⇐].  Continue this until the display is on the desired monitor/touchscreen.  A display can be closed by putting focus on that display and pressing [Escape].   [Escape] + [Tab] or [Tab] + [Clear] can be used to close all open tabs, except 1 - Live/Blind and 2 - Playback Status isplay.  

All displays can be zoomed in and out.  This is done by placing focus on the required display, holding down the [Format] key while rolling the intensity level wheel.

Some displays have multiple different layouts.  Use the [Format] key to advance through the available formats.

Some examples are listed below.

  • Live
    • Channel Summary
    • Table View
  • Blind
    • Channel Summary
    • Table View
    • Spreadsheet
  • Patch
    • By Channel
    • By Address
  • Playback Status Display
    • Expanded Cue List
    • Dual Cue List
    • Expanded Playback View.
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