Old 07-12-2019, 09:56 AM   #1
Phazma
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Default Will Reaper ever scroll and zoom smoothly

So I guess most Mac users, like me, are using a Magic Mouse and are used to super smooth, pixel by pixel scrolling and zooming in most apps with a nice inertia effect, so when you give your mouse a swipe it will scroll for a longer distance until you put your finger back on. Until little ago I was working with Logic (and a little bit of S1) and both also worked like this.
Now that I switched to Reaper, when using the mouse to scroll and zoom, it seems to do so at a very low resolution, basically the UI elements jump in chunks of pixels.
Also the inertia fades out in a sluggish way doing some pretty large and slow jumps towards the end. Scrolling works a bit better than zooming.

Funnily enough I noticed when scrolling by dragging the top part of the ruler or the scrollbar at the side Reaper moves the UI elements in a much smoother way. The bottom scroll bar for some reason works smoothly like the ruler when zoomed far out but when zoomed far in it seems even more jumpy than the mouse.

Ultimately I noticed even when doing things where the UI elements actually move pixel by pixel (like dragging an item without snap, or as described before, dragging the ruler to scroll) it looks more flickery than in other apps, like all the grid lines, ruler numbers, items etc are flashing. In Logic and S1 it looks like the UI elements manage to somehow smoothly change position without being refreshed at each movement.

So could someone who knows more about graphics and programming than me explain why scrolling and zooming with the mouse isn't as smooth as for example by dragging the ruler? Is that difficult to program and not a priority or is there actually some reason to not do that (like drawbacks for people that use mice with stepped scroll-wheels)?
If it is possible to make scrolling/zooming smooth, will it be easily possible also to make inertia for magic mouse users work like in other apps or is that difficult to do?
And what does it take to make UI elements move smoothly like in other apps as if they weren't redrawn?

Hope someone can shed some light on these issues, are more important to me than I'd like to admit

EDIT:
Link to the video I posted few posts later - here you can see the issue I am talking about:
https://vimeo.com/347874868?utm_sour...campaign=28749

Last edited by Phazma; 07-13-2019 at 05:30 AM.
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Old 07-12-2019, 10:18 AM   #2
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Justin is working on a fix for the next version...
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Old 07-12-2019, 10:46 AM   #3
Phazma
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Seriously?? �� Will he enable zooming/scrolling by pixel, as well as support for mouse inertia as well as seemless UI redrawing? This would be beyond amazing!
Btw you intend for Reaper 6 or even one of the next updates already? Because I know he just fixed mixer opening time and some UI sluggishness with large projects but thought that the changes I wrote about are bigger and not requested enough to be addressed soon.

In my experience a UI as smooth and accurate as Logic's for example would not only look/feel nicer but actually enhance workflow as you can more reliably navigate the project and move things around quickly without getting lost because of UI jumping.

Last edited by Phazma; 07-12-2019 at 10:52 AM.
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Old 07-12-2019, 06:17 PM   #4
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I'm not sure what a "big project" is for you, but I never have any trouble navigating projects of around 70 tracks.

I use navigator for big moves (all my tracks are color coded, so it's easy to see where tracks are in the navigator). Right drag scrolls the arrangement for smaller moves.

Even if none of that appeals to you, you should definitely assign a key to the action "restore previous zoom/scroll position." No matter where I end up (by accident or on purpose), I just hit backspace to go back to where I was. It's like a separate undo history just for the view. It saves multiple steps (no idea how many, but more than I've every needed) and you can step through views in both directions.

I'm not on Mac, but all of these are very smooth behaviors for me and I haven't needed to change my workflow there in years. Try it out, in lieu of the "fix" which may or may not ever arrive. The devs don't make promises and we can only hope that WIP stuff in pre-release versions will actually make it into the release versions.
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Old 07-13-2019, 12:29 AM   #5
Phazma
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That suggested action might indeed come in handy but otherwise your workflow is not immediate enough for me. Tried the navigator but I prefer having the immediacy of just going up/down and left/right by swiping my mouse and zooming with scroll+modifiers while having to live with the jumpy UI until they hopefully do something about it.

If you are on a Windows machine and use a standard mouse with stepped scroll wheel you might not notice Reaper feeling not smooth because all of your other apps also react to stepped scrolling, line by line. But I am pretty sure most Mac users love the smooth pixel by pixel navigation inside all apps and when you are used to that and then have an app like Reaper, which scrolls "the windows way" it just somehow feels clunky, at least to me - and while of course the audio editing capabilities still are what matters most and speaks for Reaper this bothers me more than I could have imagined.

Here a video comparing scrolling, zooming and UI redrawing when dragging an item - Reaper (left) and Logic (right). While scrolling and zooming are pretty obvious, also pay attention at the end when I am dragging the item. In Reaper it looks like if snap was enabled (even though it isn't) and in Logic it is very smooth:

https://vimeo.com/347874868?utm_sour...campaign=28749

Generally all these navigation operations make it look as if Reaper's GUI was flickering a bit at each movement while Logic's GUI remains "constant", making it easier and more intuitive to follow the scrolling/zooming/dragging you are doing.

I'd like to know what do apps like Logic (or Studio One for that matter) do to make this graphical performance possible and if that is something that may be possible also for Reaper's developers to integreate or there are reasons why it is improbable that Reaper will ever graphically behave this way.
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Old 07-13-2019, 03:05 AM   #6
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Reaper is still using Apple's old graphics engine. The transition to Metal, Apple's new graphics engine, is being worked upon. There's a test version in the beta section of this forum somewhere. I think this is the latest one:

https://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=222967

And the previous version being tested:

https://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=222605

I think you can count on Reaper 6 having Metal onboard, which should fix most GUI performance problems on recent Macs (>2012). I expect the new graphics engine to deliver at least twice the speed of the old one for graphics rendering.

Some info about Metal:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metal_(API)
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