Old 12-11-2019, 05:35 PM   #521
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However, simply looking at a screen of selected notes (which happens fairly frequently for me), it's very difficult to see what's selected and what is not.
I still hope I'm missing your point but if all are selected, I learned what selected and non-selected looked like 10 seconds into testing so I'm having a problem swallowing that one unless it's accessibility related and/or doesn't live up to the hype I was sold.

I still think I'm missing something though.
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Old 12-11-2019, 05:42 PM   #522
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So the fairest conclusion I can think of is I would not blame anyone for wanting more contrast for MIDI item selection, but I don't yet see it as bad as I thought I would find based on reading forum posts. If the guess what is selected screenshot is via select all, it's a bogus example sorry! I think midi item contrast could be worth checking for accessibility rules by cockos... but I can't find a specific WACG rule for something like a MIDI item (there may be a for the velocity text though!)

For me personally, I can work with them as-is, I'm NOT going to get confused - I say that with confidence based on 20 years of "dawing" but I am open to the example I still may have missed as I can skim text like a pro (meaning I skim and miss details).
Just so you know the answer, the items selected (by lowellben in the "guess what's selected post") were the items with the highest velocity only.. the rest were unselected.

As I said in my last post, I am not super stoked about the change to selected MIDI items color, but it isn't a huge crime to me either.. but I also have pretty good vision. Not a hill I'm dying on though, which is why I am not really posting about it anymore other than to clarify some questions such as yours.

I'd also agree with you that it is pretty easy once you seen the sailboat to always see the sailboat here. lol (meaning once you've selected all the velocity ranges and seen the tinting in action, it's easy for your brain to say "oh ok, that's what a selected item looks like")
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Old 12-11-2019, 05:51 PM   #523
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Just so you know the answer, the items selected (by lowellben in the "guess what's selected post") were the items with the highest velocity only.. the rest were unselected.
Is his default? That matters I think, it doesn't make the complaint invalid but the distinction does matter. His looked different than my default. Maybe he has a color map or something - just clarifying the conditions.


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I'd also agree with you that it is pretty easy once you seen the sailboat to always see the sailboat here. lol
That's what I got out of it, it just happened while testing and was "ah yea, got it".
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Old 12-11-2019, 05:59 PM   #524
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Is his default? That matters I think, it doesn't make the complaint invalid but the distinction does matter. His looked different than my default. Maybe he has a color map or something.
I'm going just from memory here, but it looks about right to me. It's actually not an easy thing to change the velocity colors (I mean it is, but with all due respect to lowellben, I doubt he did that, as it would have required from instruction from someone). When you change velocity, the colors look around like the colors he posted. That would be the "color map" in question, so to speak.. there is a tintmap that is used for different velocity colors (based on the velocity of the MIDI note). A low velocity = blue, and I think a high velocity = red or yellow. Then, when you select something, it looks kind of like a yellowish color overlay blended on top.

Anyways, I'm pretty sure lowellben's screenshot is the default theme with no changes. I'm not sure what your screenshot was, exactly, because you took a few, but you didn't initially change velocities (not sure if you did in your last screenshot though??)
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:00 PM   #525
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I still hope I'm missing your point but if all are selected, I learned what selected and non-selected looked like 10 seconds into testing so I'm having a problem swallowing that one unless it's accessibility related and/or doesn't live up to the hype I was sold.

I still think I'm missing something though.
I can not tell the difference between a screen of selected and unselected notes in 6.0. 5.x is clear to me.

If there are some selected, and some not selected, then I can figure it out in 6.0 after staring at it a bit.

Just for fun, I had my wife close her eyes and try to guess which notes were selected (27" 5k monitor, switched to a calibrated profile, in a high-cri well-lit room... while I had my dark sunglasses on). She was about 50/50, and thought I was playing tricks on her a few times.

I'm more than willing to accept that I'm an exception to the rule in this regard. However, am I off base in thinking that this is a regression in usability from 5->6 for even the average user?
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:02 PM   #526
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Also, I can't seem to make my 6.0 theme, on a new portable install, look like lowellben or karbo's.

The colours don't match... and I would imagine they should with a screenshot? Perhaps platform differences?
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:06 PM   #527
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I can not tell the difference between a screen of selected and unselected notes in 6.0. 5.x is clear to me.

If there are some selected, and some not selected, then I can figure it out in 6.0 after staring at it a bit.

Just for fun, I had my wife close her eyes and try to guess which notes were selected (27" 5k monitor, switched to a calibrated profile, in a high-cri well-lit room... while I had my dark sunglasses on). She was about 50/50, and thought I was playing tricks on her a few times.

I'm more than willing to accept that I'm an exception to the rule in this regard. However, am I off base in thinking that this is a regression in usability from 5->6 for even the average user?
Here's where my latest clarity is...

My previous understanding was that all midi notes were selected in lowellben's example, which I didn't go for because it's not a worthy example in that regard, however based on nait's help I now think I understand as...

Lowellben's example is apparently NOT all notes selected, but only the ones with highest velocity - I can't see those easily either if that is the case - however, in my default install, my notes set to display color via velocity look nothing like his so need to know why because that's an important detail.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:10 PM   #528
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Also, I can't seem to make my 6.0 theme, on a new portable install, look like lowellben or karbo's.

The colours don't match... and I would imagine they should with a screenshot? Perhaps platform differences?
That's crazy, voodoo man. I'm running the V6.rc8 build since I haven't touched in about a week - I might can try the latest but need to get some actual recording done - ah the irony.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:13 PM   #529
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Installed V6.01, same colors FYI. You are correct, they are numbers, they should match each other - I first thought maybe a colorspace mismatch but didn't go the extra step to see.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:16 PM   #530
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I'll do my own screenshot in a bit here, and post the exact velocity numbers I used too, so there's so we can compare apples to apples
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:17 PM   #531
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Installed V6.01, same colors FYI. You are correct, they are numbers, they should match each other - I first thought maybe a colorspace mismatch but didn't go the extra step to see.
I just tried changing colourspace here, it doesn't change the screenshot values for me.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:20 PM   #532
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I haven't looked at the photos side by side, so they might be way different, but these pics are all being compressed too, so maybe something in that is changing color tone a bit too... anyways.. off to Reaper to come up with my own sample
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:28 PM   #533
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I just tried changing colourspace here, it doesn't change the screenshot values for me.
I didn't expect it to. Not really thinking this is a road to go down but to compare them would be for two people to take screenshots, paste into Photoshop or something that can point sample the hex or RGB values then post them here - if it's a display issue, the numbers will all match but the visual won't. Hopefully, the copy/paste not having a profile will keep the test clean but there is room for problems possibly making it not fully trustable.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:29 PM   #534
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I'm more than willing to accept that I'm an exception to the rule in this regard. However, am I off base in thinking that this is a regression in usability from 5->6 for even the average user?
What fix would work best for you?

Would it be a thicker border for highlighted items? Maybe a pulsing animation effect, or would that be too much?

For me it’s an improvement from stock v5, BUT, I know in my head what I have selected so wouldn’t be opening an unknown partially selected MIDI region.

And while this is in no way an answer to your issue, regardless of what DAW I’m in, if I’m ever unsure on the selection I’ll just delete and undo, or move up then down via keyboard to see my current selection.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:32 PM   #535
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I find it a little easier to pick out in my screenshot because of compression fading the colors a bit, but here is my sample (100% stock Reaper 6 theme, yes):



Going from left to right, from the starting point of each MIDI note:

Note: Velocity
1: 22
2: 41
3: 60
4: 127
5: 76
6: 40
7: 70
8: 103
9: 57
10: 12

I won't say which are selected just yet, but I think Karbo will know.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:40 PM   #536
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I know the one's I think are selected - I can't disagree with it being more obvious though.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:46 PM   #537
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What fix would work best for you?

Would it be a thicker border for highlighted items? Maybe a pulsing animation effect, or would that be too much?

For me it’s an improvement from stock v5, BUT, I know in my head what I have selected so wouldn’t be opening an unknown partially selected MIDI region.

And while this is in no way an answer to your issue, regardless of what DAW I’m in, if I’m ever unsure on the selection I’ll just delete and undo, or move up then down via keyboard to see my current selection.
I think the V5 screenshots I showed above are much clearer. I can tell which notes are selected even if I wasn't the person that selected them.

I usually do the selection-move thing too, but sometimes it's problematic to have that filling up your undo history if you use undo-branching (as I do).
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:50 PM   #538
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I know the one's I think are selected - I can't disagree with it being more obvious though.
Yeah I don't really have a horse in this race anymore, but I do believe it should be a bit more obvious. I'm not color blind. And I essentially have 20/20 vision. That said, I select MIDI notes a lot, and I "hacked" the R6 theme to make all selected notes one exact color (like Reaper 5) in my own modified theme.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:54 PM   #539
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Default theme, with RGB values labeled. macOS 10.15.1



I'm using color notes by pitch with the pitches: C3, D3, F3, G3.
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Old 12-11-2019, 06:58 PM   #540
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Yeah I don't really have a horse in this race anymore, but I do believe it should be a bit more obvious.
^Same here.

I had 20/20 even 20/15 vision for much of my life, the last 10 years have degraded some and started wearing reading glasses for the first time in my life around 2012 - and I like contrast more than I used too... but I can still see these without issue - especially while I'm using reaper (vs pictures) which is the only use case that truly matters. Still for it being easy to increase contrast what have you but not an OMFG moment.
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Old 12-11-2019, 07:06 PM   #541
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Default theme, with RGB values labeled. macOS 10.15.1


I'm using color notes by pitch with the pitches: C3, D3, F3, G3.
Ok.. back... I think they are functionally the same but there there are some tiny differences in your screenshot based on your numbers, maybe the save operation is shifting colors a tiny amount but didn't expect that from PNG. I really gotta get some tracks laid fellas so I can't test that right now.

The numbers I placed on your image (your image is left), are what I got back measuring them from photoshop here. Edit, I previously posted wrong image FYI - also the green one should have a blue value of 130 not 13 (typo).


Even if I copy/paste the image below back into PS the values change yet again so, sorry, not as good a test as I thought.

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Old 12-11-2019, 07:37 PM   #542
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I actually have been playing around with the dark theme a little bit tonight,I have to admit... this is growing on me! lol

It is a lot better for me after I changed my track colors (namely, SWS Auto Colors). That was really all. So, that said, I totally get why people love the theme. I'm not in love with some of the envelope colors, but those are super easy to change, so I think I'll do that, and be happy with this theme. I'd still like to dive into theme creation/modification, but the urgency is gone now.

I don't think this is going to be the case for everyone that dislikes the theme, but I think it just took some time to adjust to the new look, and now that I have.. thumbs up.


Here's what I'm working with now.. not everyone's cup of tea, but it works well for me! https://i.imgur.com/hnapN1D.jpg
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Old 12-13-2019, 01:54 PM   #543
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I think you're speaking a bit too broadly here. Just because you can study it at university, doesn't mean it's pure science.

There are certainly better approaches that many people agree on, but a perfect "one size fits all" is NOT one of them.

Keeping in mind that science also evolves over time. Can we all agree that nobody has made the perfect theme? For REAPER or any DAW?

Therefore, at least "part" of it is subjective. Otherwise, we'd all be using the same REAPER theme. And we're not.

Theming is quite similar. You're balancing between what's usable and most visually pleasing. While there are guidelines to follow, it will inevitably be subjective.

Which is why REAPER has the best approach, if you don't like something, you can change it.
Hi Kenny,

First of all i want to thank you for what you do with the reaper blog, and also for featuring my theme back in 2012 when i was in a difficult spot - that and the great response of the community helped me overcome some tough self-doubt time back then.

Yes, one size fits all is not achievable but fortunately Reaper flexibility allows us to fit it to our needs however those might be.

But with all due respect (and because of that) i have to disagree with you on a number of issues that from your perspective i understand that they look right, as they do for the majority of people with untrained eyes (as happens with ppl with untrained ears that cant hear compression or eq, well, you get my point).

UX design involves a broad range of competences, and all of them are linked to the human perception and human limitations. These don't change, as you said science change. Actually humans have the same very basic limitations and needs for thousands of years. Yes, some things have changed, some have evolved and became more sophisticated, but if you go down to the basics the way our brains are wired haven't changed that much (for better or for worse). This is the science that is just surfacing now, and will hardly change anytime soon.

That being said, v6 theme fails to meet SOME of these limitations but it surely DOES MEET a lot of other things, one being a dark theme it is easier on the eyes on the long hours ppl spend looking at it, also some of the choices of tinting certain elements, also its customizable architecture, and so on. This tells me that things are going in a right direction. Where it fails is in some details that can be changed but also on some other things - but its mainly about very high expectations vs a reality where there is a lot of work to make things as they are, and please everyone. Theme adjuster for example is a great idea, and i see it as very useful, just maybe a bit buggy than people expected it to be - imo because of the very high expectations they have, not because theme adjuster is bad. It can, and will surely be improved in the future. Its just that some people don't want to mingle with customizations and want the "perfect experience" out of the box.

But Reaper already have a great UX oob - its fast, not crashing, customizable, competent, have a big community to help, and a general common sense approach to things - these are all part of the UX package and made it such a praised and used daw in the audio community. It could have more coherence of the v6 interface items - some buttons here and there, the unthemeable windows, maybe a better organization of them, and also the menus i think can be improved, because it can be overwhelming and stepping up the learning curve for people because in the current context of apps, they got too used to very simple apps, not even in the same league with Reaper's complexity and customization. People get scared of Reaper easily, and that can be addressed. Its not bad, just can be better.

So i dont see many things to be worried about or get hot about in here. Indeed people have huge expectations about some things that can (and i believe will) be improved, but old themes still work, Reaper is still the best daw out there, v6 brings some great improvements feature and performance wise, WT is still a very helpful and talented designer, and you are the same helpful great guy making some of the most instructional videos that helped many of us get a grip on Reaper's vast competences. Sure, some tease you about the slow talking but i dont mind it and actually i think it helps other people.


Now, back on track.

I started to mod the v6 theme (work in progress) and i made a thread about it for help and feedback https://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=228633

For A/B testing you can download the images below and switch them in your picture viewer to see what i meant by "some things can be improved".

https://imgur.com/a/MjjeLo3
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Old 12-13-2019, 03:52 PM   #544
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But with all due respect (and because of that) i have to disagree with you on a number of issues that from your perspective i understand that they look right, as they do for the majority of people with untrained eyes (as happens with ppl with untrained ears that cant hear compression or eq, well, you get my point).

UX design involves a broad range of competences, and all of them are linked to the human perception and human limitations. These don't change, as you said science change. Actually humans have the same very basic limitations and needs for thousands of years. Yes, some things have changed, some have evolved and became more sophisticated, but if you go down to the basics the way our brains are wired haven't changed that much (for better or for worse). This is the science that is just surfacing now, and will hardly change anytime soon.

Theme adjuster for example is a great idea, and i see it as very useful, just maybe a bit buggy than people expected it to be - imo because of the very high expectations they have, not because theme adjuster is bad. It can, and will surely be improved in the future. Its just that some people don't want to mingle with customizations and want the "perfect experience" out of the box.

But Reaper already have a great UX oob - its fast, not crashing, customizable, competent, have a big community to help, and a general common sense approach to things - these are all part of the UX package and made it such a praised and used daw in the audio community. It could have more coherence of the v6 interface items - some buttons here and there, the unthemeable windows, maybe a better organization of them, and also the menus i think can be improved, because it can be overwhelming and stepping up the learning curve for people because in the current context of apps, they got too used to very simple apps, not even in the same league with Reaper's complexity and customization. People get scared of Reaper easily, and that can be addressed. Its not bad, just can be better.

I started to mod the v6 theme (work in progress) and i made a thread about it for help and feedback https://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=228633

For A/B testing you can download the images below and switch them in your picture viewer to see what i meant by "some things can be improved".

https://imgur.com/a/MjjeLo3
I appreciate your thoughtful comment but I've learned too that regardless of presenting data and well-thought out objective facts, many times it falls on deaf ears. Don't be discouraged if this happens. You wrote a very well thought out argument. Sadly, that isn't enough to change people's minds once they have made it clear that nothing will ever make them budge. Like, nothing.
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Old 12-13-2019, 04:31 PM   #545
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Another happy camper here. The V6 theme seems to be less obtrusive at the same time as being clear for workflow. I love the routing stripes, mute/solo colors, the green shade on the icons, and piano-roll colors. The jury is out on the record and play transport buttons in terms of color and "3D-ness" but they are, at least, easy to find. IMHO, White Tie has done a fantastic job overall.

I will say, as an aside, that I've been obsessing over my monitor brightness in recent weeks. Those SRC graphs at src.infinitewave.ca are crazy different depending on the height of my chair or whether I'm slouching. It makes me wonder whether my monitor is rubbish (Acer model from Target) and what the viewing angle sweet spot is. I can therefore imagine that a user's monitor brand, display type, display presets and viewing angle can have a huge impact on response to this darker theme.
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Old 12-15-2019, 03:28 AM   #546
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Those SRC graphs at src.infinitewave.ca are crazy different depending on the height of my chair or whether I'm slouching. It makes me wonder whether my monitor is rubbish (Acer model from Target) and what the viewing angle sweet spot is. I can therefore imagine that a user's monitor brand, display type, display presets and viewing angle can have a huge impact on response to this darker theme.
You probably have a TN panel (or a low quality IPS/PLS). Those are horrible with viewing angles.
You are looking for a quality IPS or PLS (Samsung) panel to avoid angle based color shifts.
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Old 12-15-2019, 07:27 AM   #547
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Where do I get separators from? I think it is quite a good idea to let the user decide which controls he/she wants to see in different tracks. But no other layouts allowed....hm.....not compatible with older themes.

I used to use saparators for cleanup in MCP and TCP.
Doesn´t anybody miss these?
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Old 12-15-2019, 08:11 AM   #548
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Where do I get separators from? I think it is quite a good idea to let the user decide which controls he/she wants to see in different tracks. But no other layouts allowed....hm.....not compatible with older themes.

I used to use saparators for cleanup in MCP and TCP.
Doesn´t anybody miss these?
I never used them, as it messes with using my Faderport to scroll through tracks, but now you can have separator borders on tracks themselves, so you can have visual separation without needed extra tracks. Maybe there's a reason that doesn't work for you, but I'm liking it.
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Old 12-15-2019, 08:47 AM   #549
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Where do I get separators from? I think it is quite a good idea to let the user decide which controls he/she wants to see in different tracks. But no other layouts allowed....hm.....not compatible with older themes.

I used to use saparators for cleanup in MCP and TCP.
Doesn´t anybody miss these?
I do miss my separators.
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Old 12-15-2019, 09:32 AM   #550
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Originally Posted by TheWhistler View Post
Where do I get separators from? I think it is quite a good idea to let the user decide which controls he/she wants to see in different tracks. But no other layouts allowed....hm.....not compatible with older themes.

I used to use saparators for cleanup in MCP and TCP.
Doesn´t anybody miss these?
This was discussed here:-

https://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=228202
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Old 12-15-2019, 09:34 AM   #551
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I do miss my separators.
I can't understand why you are saying that. I thought you were involved in that particular discussion. In which case, you should have divider tracks in R6.
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Old 12-15-2019, 11:03 AM   #552
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Dislike EVERYTHING about it.......... so, I don't use it.
Instead, I use a HIGHLY customized version of the Imperial theme that WT didn't finish - it's fabulous!
Thanks, WT!!!!!!
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Old 12-15-2019, 11:11 AM   #553
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Thanks for the headsup
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Old 12-15-2019, 11:16 AM   #554
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Thanks for the headsup
No probs

Might be a bit difficult to follow. Make a post in there to raise any questions, just in case I don't keep my eye on this one.


cheers

andy
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Old 12-15-2019, 05:06 PM   #555
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I never used them, as it messes with using my Faderport to scroll through tracks, but now you can have separator borders on tracks themselves, so you can have visual separation without needed extra tracks. Maybe there's a reason that doesn't work for you, but I'm liking it.
While I agree that regular track used as separators may introduce some bad side effects (mainly when using control surfaces), I have to say that new separator borders on tracks does not adequately replace the named separator tracks for organisational purposes. And for users that do not use control surfaces it would be handy to have separator track layouts back.
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Old 12-15-2019, 05:10 PM   #556
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Originally Posted by TheWhistler View Post
Where do I get separators from? I think it is quite a good idea to let the user decide which controls he/she wants to see in different tracks. But no other layouts allowed....hm.....not compatible with older themes.

I used to use saparators for cleanup in MCP and TCP.
Doesn´t anybody miss these?
Yes, I miss them, too.

But to be clear, I alredy do not use new Default 6 Theme for much more important problems and quirks... So I can have separators in other themes
It is a shame.
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Old 12-16-2019, 12:45 AM   #557
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While I agree that regular track used as separators may introduce some bad side effects (mainly when using control surfaces), I have to say that new separator borders on tracks does not adequately replace the named separator tracks for organisational purposes. And for users that do not use control surfaces it would be handy to have separator track layouts back.
I use the wonderful Klinke script with a Behringer X-Touch.
I can easily exclude separator tracks from being affected from my device.
But you are right. A separator is a graphical/organisational item.
Nothing that qualifies it as a track. That is a quirky workaround.
Managing projects with 100+ tracks would be a pain without having separators. So I will stick with the version 5 theme, which is a shame because the new ways to manipulate the tracks are great.
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Old 12-16-2019, 01:48 AM   #558
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Originally Posted by akademie View Post
While I agree that regular track used as separators may introduce some bad side effects (mainly when using control surfaces), I have to say that new separator borders on tracks does not adequately replace the named separator tracks for organisational purposes. And for users that do not use control surfaces it would be handy to have separator track layouts back.
I'm sure I've seen someone's tweak of default V6 that had separators... or maybe I imagined it? Have you been keeping up with what people are doing to the default in the themes forum?
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Old 12-16-2019, 04:23 AM   #559
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Originally Posted by synkrotron View Post
I can't understand why you are saying that. I thought you were involved in that particular discussion. In which case, you should have divider tracks in R6.
I *did miss my separators
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Old 12-16-2019, 04:49 AM   #560
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Have no fear, deep space separators will be here (hopefully on time for Christmas)

https://imgur.com/a/OUABuCE

Not that complicated to make either. Just make a subfolder in the theme folder (called "mixer-deep-space-separator" below) put there 2 images named tcp_bg.png and mcp_bg.png and then at the end of your rtconfig, before dummy layouts add a layout:

Code:
Layout "▮ Deep Space Separator" "mixer-deep-space-separator" 
	clear mcp.*
	set mcp.size [50 1]
	clear tcp.*
	set tcp.size [1 50]
EndLayout
Done
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