Old 12-02-2011, 07:01 AM   #1
sonnie
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Default A professional theme?

Hey Reaper-Community,

me and some other guy have had a discussion in a german recording community, that there is no "very good looking" and "professional" theme for Reaper, and too much "homemade", thats why Reaper have its "hobby / homerecording" fame.

First I don't agreed with it, but after reflecting about it, and comparing it to other DAW-Themes it has changed my view.

My thoughts about it: if there is ONE very good theme, e.g. like in PT, Cubase, and, and, and ... noone will care about homemade skins.
Don't get me wrong, I love Reaper, and use it often as I can, but I getting hate the themes more and more...

Well, IS there a theme, that I don't know, or anything planned in the future
?
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Old 12-02-2011, 07:09 AM   #2
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I definitely agree with that, Cockos should team up with a very good skinner and make a really enjoyable interface for the best DAW on the market. Something relaxing and easy on the eyes like Protools would be great.
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Old 12-02-2011, 07:10 AM   #3
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Ahhh, great. I am not alone.
I feared, that I'd getting destroyed here
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Old 12-02-2011, 07:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fak0u View Post
I definitely agree with that, Cockos should team up with a very good skinner
They already have - there is an excellent small team of people (lead by maestro White Tie) who created the default v4 theme. Whether or not you like it aesthetically is entirely subjective, but it is functionally ideal for a default theme.

As someone who's very picky about how things look (seriously), there are 2 themes which imo are the most balanced in functionality, usability and aesthetics - the v4 default and Nick Morris' ReaBorn. Both of these are (again, imo) just as professional as the skins of any other DAW on the market.
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Old 12-02-2011, 07:27 AM   #5
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The default theme v4 is good in functionallity good, but not perfect.
In many other forums users moan about eye-cancer with it.

I only use default desaturated, but its not that comfortable for my eyes like PT.
Its not only about the colouring, its more about the spacing and the gerneral layout.
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Old 12-02-2011, 07:59 AM   #6
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Before we create another monster thread about what is professional,
good looking, user friendly, better/worse etc., let's go over a few things:

- opinion on user interface is completely subjective
- opinion on user interface will always be divided
- developers offer users a very extensive theme customization,
to suit their personal preferences
- default reaper 4 theme was developed publicly, offering users
to provide feedback. It was made to provide most functionality
for general use, successfully maintaining the soul of reaper.
- in order to fully enjoy reaper, one has to customize it. unlike
other daws, where you simply have to learn and get used to
what you get, you can completely change and personalize here.
some hate this, some love this.
- there are themes that were brilliantly crafted, some even try
to recreate other daws' look. I suggest offering an opinion there
eg. on PT theme: http://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=70014
- the Reaper's theme customization is fairly new and some parts
simply cannot be changed by the user, as they use the OS default window
interface, which makes most themes inconsistent in certain views. Eventually
I hope we will see a complete Reaper interface, which will far extend the
possibility of coherent theme crafting.

Bottom line, to get closer to a perfect interface, Reaper will first have to
support a complete GUI that does not rely on OS graphics. Than I'm sure
someone or some group will come up with something that majority will
enjoy without question. For now it's up to a user to dig in and modify what
he can to get his piece of perfection, and I find that fun

e
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Old 12-02-2011, 08:13 AM   #7
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Thanks EricM, you put that very nicely. Though I would perhaps disagree that this bit is a realistic goal:

Quote:
Originally Posted by EricM View Post
Than I'm sure someone or some group will come up with something that majority will enjoy without question.
...I'm not sure that's ever going to happen Other DAWs have a 100% 'total design' interface and everything always gets niggled and questioned, at the very least. That's just the way of things, particularly when the subjective and the functional are so entwined, but when the day you speak of comes, Reaper will still have theming, and so one way or another our victory will be ...complete!
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Old 12-02-2011, 08:22 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by White Tie View Post
...I'm not sure that's ever going to happen Other DAWs have a 100% 'total design' interface and everything always gets niggled and questioned, at the very least. That's just the way of things, particularly when the subjective and the functional are so entwined, but when the day you speak of comes, Reaper will still have theming, and so one way or another our victory will be ...complete!
Agree there, I guess I just wanted to point out that
when user has no way to influence/modify the theme,
in the end one has to simply accept it or move to
other DAW. Having a possibility of change makes it
more 'vulnerable' for criticism.

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Old 12-02-2011, 08:24 AM   #9
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Old 12-02-2011, 08:31 AM   #10
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anything passing under human subjectivity is largely to be improved...like reaper v4 customable themes, among other smaller things in life.
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Old 12-02-2011, 08:37 AM   #11
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I love the default theme. I prefer it over all my other DAWs ( Pyramix, Pro Tools, Ableton Live).

The grass is always greener.
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Old 12-02-2011, 08:44 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EricM View Post
- there are themes that were brilliantly crafted, some even try
to recreate other daws' look. I suggest offering an opinion there
eg. on PT theme: http://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=70014
I dont want my Reaper is looking like PT, i use PT and love it, but I hate Avid and their marketing and trimming the user. Thats why I love Reaper and use it as often as I can.

Quote:
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Agree there, I guess I just wanted to point out that
when user has no way to influence/modify the theme,
in the end one has to simply accept it or move to
other DAW. Having a possibility of change makes it
more 'vulnerable' for criticism.
Well, its okay and I love to have the possibility to change sth. in my theme.
BUT the default themes in Reaper are looking like "kindergarden-themes", v4 is a good start for reaper, looking more "professionally" but it is just the start.
I hope and I trust in Cockos and maybe Mr. White Tie that this is not the absolute answer for the theme.
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Old 12-02-2011, 08:57 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonnie View Post
the default themes in Reaper are looking like "kindergarden-themes", v4 is a good start for reaper, looking more "professionally" but it is just the start.
Yes, that is your opinion about this particular theme.
Let's not discuss that, it is as it is.

Is there any Reaper theme that you find 'more professional'?
Can you provide us with your definition of 'professional
interface' (in other words, your preference)? Let's find a
theme that may suit you, and if it's still a work in progress
you may want to provide the theme developer with your feedback
to make it more appealing/professional/user friendly

Here's a start:
http://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=85426

e
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Old 12-02-2011, 09:04 AM   #14
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ReaBorn by N.Moritz is not kindergarden imo, take a look.

also compare how long you have used PT with reaper. use reaper as much and for as long then you can make a comparison.
and listen less to your friends

agreed that perhaps v4 default isn't 'wow' & fall-over lookwise, but it doesn't need to! when i have stuff to do i often revert to it as everything is clearly laid out, which is testament to the v4 theming process.

i'd also say that with v4 themeing has become more involved and arguably harder to do well, so the number of people making themes and the rate of creation of excellent ones is less, and considering v4 is still pretty new, more and better themes will come.

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Old 12-02-2011, 09:41 AM   #15
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Handbags at the ready, girls.....
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Old 12-02-2011, 09:59 AM   #16
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I think a lot of companies don't prioritize the appearance of their product highly enough. It truly is one of the most important elements of any software.

If a skinning application was developed to actually use the skinning engine, more competent UI designers would be up for making skins for it.

As it is, having to learn code to skin something, at least to me, is a no go.

No matter how badly I might want to make Reaper look EXACTLY how I want to, I neither have the time, or the mental capacity to learn how to code it.

Skin studio is a good example of the type of app I refer to. It is the Skinning program for Windowblinds. it is capable of skinning the entire operating system.. zero coding required.

http://www.stardock.com/products/skinstudio/

Anyway for me RADO, or my VOX mod of it , looks quite professional enough.

I am thinking about modding the default theme too.
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Old 12-02-2011, 10:15 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EricM View Post
Yes, that is your opinion about this particular theme.
Let's not discuss that, it is as it is.
Yes, this wasn't my intension.

Quote:
Originally Posted by EricM View Post
1. Is there any Reaper theme that you find 'more professional'?
2. Can you provide us with your definition of 'professional
interface' (in other words, your preference)?
1. No, not really, for that reason the topic. My favourite is, as told before, the default v4 desaturated.
2. Its hard to tell you in english for me. I try: Its the mixerspacing and the look and feel of the left side of the TCP (mixer-similar-thing, sorry, dont know the word).
Both are designed not very good. Wrong colours and the "left-TCP-thing" is totally wrong separated.
Yea, I know, I can (let) change everything, but thats not the point. I really love the*freedom in reaper to change nearly everything as I want.
My opinion is, that I dont have to. Sure, I can, but don't want to.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BenK-msx View Post
ReaBorn by N.Moritz is not kindergarden imo, take a look.
Yes, I did already. Don't like it that much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BenK-msx View Post
also compare how long you have used PT with reaper. use reaper as much and for as long then you can make a comparison.
I use Reaper since version 2.9, buyed it at version 3.1. (I think). I need to use ProTools for some payed projects, and buyed it 2 or 3 months ago.

Quote:
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and listen less to your friends


Quote:
Originally Posted by BenK-msx View Post
agreed that perhaps v4 default isn't 'wow' & fall-over lookwise, but it doesn't need to! when i have stuff to do i often revert to it as everything is clearly laid out, which is testament to the v4 theming process.

i'd also say that with v4 themeing has become more involved and arguably harder to do well, so the number of people making themes and the rate of creation of excellent ones is less, and considering v4 is still pretty new, more and better themes will come.
[/QUOTE]
I was very glad, that v4 recieves a new theme. v3 just sucks hard. I mostly used the Rado-theme, whitch was good and usable, but but not very good.

I hope, anytime, anyone (aybe Cockos itself with anyones help) create a theme that is woorth of Reapers "genius".

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Handbags at the ready, girls.....
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Old 12-02-2011, 10:26 AM   #18
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ReaBORN
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Old 12-02-2011, 10:27 AM   #19
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Is it worth asking for a pic of another DAW that has a "professional" theme or is that just adding petrol to the bonfire?

My idea of "professional" will not be the same as yours, otherwise we'd all have the same cars, TVs, gadgets etc
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Old 12-02-2011, 10:37 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkStar View Post
Is it worth asking for a pic of another DAW that has a "professional" theme or is that just adding petrol to the bonfire?
I love Pro Tools, Studio One and Cubase (but not its 90s usability)
But i dont want a second like them.
I want to help getting Reaper an own identiy - not another bad copy of sth.

Quote:
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My idea of "professional" will not be the same as yours, otherwise we'd all have the same cars, TVs, gadgets etc
I totally agree with you. Its hard for me to explain my problem just in english because I'm not that eloquent as I want.

Thing is, I maybe want to earn money with Reaper, and I don't have the time to perfect it to my own, or to search for the right (and non-existent) theme for me. Thats why I use more and more an other DAW
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Old 12-02-2011, 10:43 AM   #21
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Default Ever asked for changing the design of a Microsoft product?

Guess you wouldn't even get an answer... So, for me the idea to skin Reaper the way I want it is a big unique advantage - especially that you can define the position of objects to your needs. Indeed, it's fun for me to create my own theme and I like to spend my time on this - for to make it "feel" right... individualised so to speak.
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Old 12-02-2011, 11:03 AM   #22
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we all have our likes and dislikes. I found Studio One to be utterly klunky to use and to look at for instance.
Haven't looked at Cubase since the first version of VST was out and hated the interface in soooo many ways.

Quite like Sonar's more recent incarnations, if only it was more reliable.

PT I haven't used myself since the first ever version but I worked in an HD3 studio recently and it didn't seem anything very special to look at to me.

The only thing I find a little odd in most of the Reaper themes is that for some reason the strips in the mixer always seem to be either squat and wide or have to take up far too much of the screen.

Maybe I should get a higher res monitor....

But I don't see the current crop of themes as all being amateurish by a long chalk.
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Old 12-02-2011, 11:29 AM   #23
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Well, after reading all this...

If making money with your DAW means 'professional', then that's fine.
If Reaper is a part of that, then great.

For me the MAJOR difference from the big name DAWs mentioned before and Reaper is...

This Forum and the people on it.
In many ways Reaper resembles the open source computing world.
Reaper is not free like most open source products, but priced to include 'amateur' users.
Anyone can participate in suggesting possible directions and improvements.

The current theme offerings are significant, with many offering a look, feel and workflow that could be deemed 'professional' in that you can develop a fast and efficient way to produce sound/music.

I've used other DAWs, Pro Tools included.
They are all great tools. Each have pros and cons.

What takes Reaper beyond 'professional' is not the way it looks, but the fact that it can be molded to each of our personal tastes.

It isn't perfect, but keeps getting better at a cost that us 'amateurs' can afford.
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Old 12-02-2011, 11:30 AM   #24
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WTBrawnBespoke

Super theme

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Old 12-02-2011, 11:50 AM   #25
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WTBrawnBespoke

Super theme


agree! BrawnBespoke Along with digital mods are the best I've ever seen
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Old 12-02-2011, 11:52 AM   #26
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The single pixel knob indicators just kill any kind of knobbed theme for me.

It just looks really bad, compared to something like Studio One's, or Sonars knobs.

This element of Reaper's UI needs some tlc.
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:05 PM   #27
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tlc.
Tender Loving Care? -> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TLC
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:34 PM   #28
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I myself only use the best:

http://forum.cockos.com/showpost.php...6&postcount=35

it's not called "PRO" for nothing - it's for something
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:52 PM   #29
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Of course you can tweak Reaper in every way, I tweaked the hell out of it. In the end of the day I'm just left with a very functional but not to my taste interface. Not only it does look ugly, it looks amateurish as well.

99% of the themes looks horrible, outdated or futuristic wanabes, unbelievably dark or even darker, with "fancy" buttons everywhere that look like they were handwritten and lack in eye resolution. Not to mention You have to learn again all those new icons for each theme, compatibility problems, and hard times getting some of them to actually work !

It's great to play with a skinable interface, but I definitely choose to stay with the default interface that's not sexy but still better than those themes that get posted.

Don't get me wrong, Reaper is the best DAW to me functionality wise, but it's just frustrating that its esthetics aren't that good.

My friends say my "small application" is neat. They use other DAWs and have no clue how Reaper is better in a lot of ways, but they're right in the way that it looks like a outdated application with no sex appeal.
I mean, just look at those button icons when you install Reaper, they are so ugly you have no idea what they are supposed to do. I still don't know what most of them are supposed to do on my first look, i have to check or double check every time. It actually is a downgrade from Reaper 3 icons.

BTW Spending some time to create a real 2011 interface for this DAW will bring a lot of new users to the community and ca$h for Reaper devs.
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Old 12-02-2011, 12:56 PM   #30
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There is an ART to tweaking GUI's. People like White Tie are very talented artists and as computer savy as I may be, I will never achieve the kinds of results he does. He's an:

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Old 12-02-2011, 01:13 PM   #31
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Quote:
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99% of the themes looks horrible, outdated or futuristic wanabes, unbelievably dark or even darker, with "fancy" buttons everywhere that look like they were handwritten and lack in eye resolution.

Don't get me wrong, Reaper is the best DAW to me functionality wise, but it's just frustrating that its esthetics aren't that good.

BTW Spending some time to create a real 2011 interface for this DAW will bring a lot of new users to the community and ca$h for Reaper devs.
Dude, I totally agree with you. Thats exacly my opinion.
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Old 12-02-2011, 01:18 PM   #32
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there are at least a half dozen pro interfaces in reaper, if none of those suit you then either make one or get another daw. Make some music for crying out loud !!! The interface doesn't have to be your lover.
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Old 12-02-2011, 01:28 PM   #33
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there are at least a half dozen pro interfaces in reaper
Name me please one, where I neither get eye-cancer (means good colouring for long workflows) nor bad usability.
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Old 12-02-2011, 01:32 PM   #34
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default, bespoke, rado vox, reaborn......all are very pro themes that are more than good enough for me to continue making the professional music I am making. And once again, feel free to choose another daw or make your own theme. I'm going to make more music, Reaper totally delivers all I need, the rest is just icing on the cake.

Also, calling them eye-cancer is pretty insulting.
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Old 12-02-2011, 01:46 PM   #35
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Tender Loving Care? -> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TLC
yes...

You have to realize skins can only be constructed within the capacity and framework of the application to be skinned.

Saying that all the hard work put forth so far by folks is causing you eye cancer perhaps isn't THE best way for YOU to 'help Reaper find its own identity'

Here's an idea.. put forth EXACTLY what a 2011 theme should look like, not compared to another daw, in specifics, and see if 1. anyone agrees with you, and\or maybe someone will take the job on.

Its very easy to say what one doesn't like, not so easy (apparently) to say what one does.

Lastly, check the theme I did, in my signature links, and tell me what is so cancerous about it please.
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Old 12-02-2011, 02:37 PM   #36
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Just dumping my post

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Old 12-02-2011, 02:53 PM   #37
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O.K. Anyone know what the German for "troll" is?
"Troll" is german
Call me a troll, if you can't argue another way.

@vStyler: I tried the Rado Vox Light. Colouring is good. But the contrasts are too less. A good, simple but good working mixer view is missing (meters are too big), mostly strips, too. And the left-side-of-tcp looks too futuristic, but is the best for me, right after the default.

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Old 12-02-2011, 03:24 PM   #38
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"Troll" is german
Call me a troll, if you can't argue another way.

@vStyler: I tried the Rado Vox Light. Colouring is good. But the contrasts are too less. A good, simple but good working mixer view is missing (meters are too big), mostly strips, too. And the left-side-of-tcp looks too futuristic, but is the best for me, right after the default.
You DO realize there are different mixer layouts, some with tiny meters.. ?

Also, if a selected TCP, or MCP is not contrasted enough for you, easy enough to open it in any paint app. and lighten it to your desired contrast.
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My Rado - VOX theme - http://forum.cockos.com/showthread.php?t=91884
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Old 12-02-2011, 03:28 PM   #39
gofer
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Me, I hate professional grouchies

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Old 12-02-2011, 03:39 PM   #40
sonnie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vStyler View Post
You DO realize there are different mixer layouts, some with tiny meters.. ?
Yep. But if the "volume" in mixerview is availeble meters are too big.
Tried them all a few minutes ago.


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Originally Posted by vStyler View Post
Also, if a selected TCP, or MCP is not contrasted enough for you, easy enough to open it in any paint app. and lighten it to your desired contrast.
Yes, I could, if I would. But I am not a themer, please understand. I USE a DAW, and I DONT want do design it.
But I have to thank you: you are the only one, who is not getting that huffy if anyone is criticising Reaper.

Well, I think, HERE is no discussion possible for me. All others, stay in your small world, and think, that Reaper is going to take te World-DAW-Domination.
Maybe a developer reads this topic, and maybe thinks about it.
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