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Old 12-01-2019, 04:05 PM   #81
JamesPeters
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I calibrate mine using my eyeballs. Getting brightness/contrast right is trivial for me now. Well, as long as the monitor's contrast is good enough. They all make absurd claims about their contrast, but you know when you're adjusting if it's "actual contrast" or some nonsense/trickery that doesn't always work. I consider that Asus monitor borderline "good enough" these days, especially when the new Acer that cost me $95 seems better once I adjusted it.

Color adjustment is trickier though, especially since I'm going for a compromise between properly calibrated RGB and a bit of extra "warmth" so I'm not being bombarded with so much blue light all the time. I have some images to use for reference, and I'm familiar with how they look (and compare to one another). If I'm in doubt I'll look up some images like the ones you posted. I'm actually surprised that I could see all except the last 2 shades clearly since I thought I'd made the brightness setting a little too dim on this monitor. It depends on the time of day though, how much light there is in the room. Once I'd found what I thought was a good balance with this monitor, despite how little time it took me, I just decided to not mess with it any more.

But yeah whenever I try a new monitor, it's like I can feel the brightness so strongly that it hurts my teeth. Default settings are terrible.

I also notice some people I know are using dark OS themes because they don't have enough light in their rooms, and are just staring at a monitor which is most of the light source in the room. That's a horrible idea. There should always be the right amount of light in the room (or as close to it as possible) before considering what needs to be done with the OS (or Reaper) theme.
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Old 12-01-2019, 04:31 PM   #82
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Contrast ratio numbers for monitors are just the distance between a black and white pixel but... that doesn't mean one can control all those individual values in between, those will still have to fit/map into 256 luminence values on an 8 bit monitor display.

Contrast the setting is just affecting the curve of that 8 bit mapping in a non-linear way, pushing values lower or higher based on where they fall in relation to the pivot point of the contrast control.

I kind of made that up but it should be somewhat correct.

I need as accurate color display as I can get though (within reason), it's very much like the visual version of good monitors in a well-treated room. Having 9 cameras, calibration makes life easier.
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Old 12-01-2019, 05:15 PM   #83
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I only have one DSLR, and I'm not going for absolute perfection when using it (although I do want my photos looking nice). I also don't use more than one monitor at a time. So my calibration is more about how things look when I'm using one computer or the other in each room (and photographs get edited only on one computer).
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Old 12-01-2019, 05:24 PM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesPeters View Post
I only have one DSLR, and I'm not going for absolute perfection when using it (although I do want my photos looking nice). I also don't use more than one monitor at a time. So my calibration is more about how things look when I'm using one computer or the other in each room (and photographs get edited only on one computer).
I get it. I did photography semi-professionally in the early 2000s on a CRT and no way to calibrate... but was still able to get my prints to match my screen after working at it for awhile. Some of them still hang on my wall and the colors are just fine.
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Old 12-01-2019, 05:54 PM   #85
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Video monitors can be like audio monitors. Sometimes you want to know what your audience is listening to/seeing.

The Ipad 3 had the widest gamut vs. "normal" colorspace, and is a good cheap check for photos. Kind of a pain to rig it so you can slide an image off of one monitor on a pc to the Ipad, but it can be done. I consider it a generic reference.

The full gamut monitor is like listening to a high end set of ATCs, everything online looks amateur. Make it "flat" then it's back to the same problem with audio, are people listening on ear buds, laptop, subs in cars? The variance of the way people like the brightness of their phones is very much akin to the way stereos are adjusted IMO. I'm never sure on the wide gamut monitor if something isn't popping enough or too much because of that phenomenon, so I always have to go back to the Viewsonic for the NS-10 reality check.

I'm guessing most people run their monitors so they're losing the bottom shadow tones, and may or may not be touching the contrast (based on years of "look over the shoulder" examination). When they like washed-out flatter themes they're getting a bit of contrast accentuation having their brightness too low.


But then there's always that person staring at a super nova, with zero highlight dynamic range. I'm guessing that accounts for the "Themes That Look like 8-Bit Totally Saturated Color"?

Humans.
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Old 12-04-2019, 12:53 AM   #86
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If we come to the conclusion that we need to calibrate the monitor with photography-grade facilities, just to use a DAW... then something is definitely wrong.
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Old 12-04-2019, 01:53 AM   #87
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V6 theme is too dark in my opinion.
Contrast hurts my eyes between dark tracks and flashy automation envelopes.
Same issue in the midi editor.

This is definitely not an easy on the eyes theme.
It would like it to be more light grey than dark.
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Old 12-04-2019, 02:13 AM   #88
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan View Post
If we come to the conclusion that we need to calibrate the monitor with photography-grade facilities, just to use a DAW... then something is definitely wrong.
I use my eyes. If the monitor looks right for some photos I'm familiar with, and I can see various shades clearly (such as in that example image Karbo posted), that's all it takes. By default, every monitor I've used has the brightness set too high, so I start there and the rest falls into place fairly easily.

Then I set the MIDI editor and arrange view the way I prefer (see the file I attached in this previous post, in case it helps).

Anyway, doesn't your video card come with some utility software for calibrating the screen? Even some entry-level ATI cards had that years ago.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dupont View Post
V6 theme is too dark in my opinion.
Contrast hurts my eyes between dark tracks and flashy automation envelopes.
Same issue in the midi editor.

This is definitely not an easy on the eyes theme.
It would like it to be more light grey than dark.
I felt the same way, but the changes I wanted to make were easy to make with the old theme tweaker. See that file I attached in this previous post, in case it helps.
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Old 12-04-2019, 03:04 AM   #89
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Win10 have good enough calibration tool built in. Just type "Calibrate display color" in start menu.
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Old 12-04-2019, 03:13 AM   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dupont View Post
V6 theme is too dark in my opinion.
Contrast hurts my eyes between dark tracks and flashy automation envelopes.
Same issue in the midi editor.

This is definitely not an easy on the eyes theme.
It would like it to be more light grey than dark.

Too dark for me too. I changed all backgrounds to grey with theme tweaker action. Still contrast is too hard on my eyes. Every time I test switch between previous v5 theme and the tweaked new v6, I prefer previous one. Original v6 is out of use for me. To me v5 looks more refined, easier on the eyes, folder track structure is easier to be followed, waveforms blend better into clips.
In v6 it is much harder to grasp folder structure. Tried with 1/2 and 1/4 indent, still it looks scattered all over the place.
But what troubles me most are track names in V6, because text is the same color as track, and text background is too dark and sticks out in a bad way. At least if all track names were the same color, it wouldn't look like damn fireworks.
Overall, v5 looks polished and balanced to me, while v6 is too aggressive imo.
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Old 12-04-2019, 03:25 AM   #91
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This is so subjective, what it is difficult to me is the bright midi editor, it hurts my eyes. WT can't do a theme that works perfectly for all our different points of view, it's simply impossible. As I have already said, I am sure that tweaks will appear in the future, it has always happened.

At least we can use plenty different themes, other "pro daws" only have one theme...
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Old 12-04-2019, 07:54 AM   #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evan View Post
If we come to the conclusion that we need to calibrate the monitor with photography-grade facilities, just to use a DAW... then something is definitely wrong.
I was suggesting it's probably important to know what a user, who is having issues, monitor shows with that calibration image I showed so we can get to the bottom of this. But I think it is this...

Lokasenna said reaper harder to see than VSCode, I now think that is a contrast between elements issue because VS Code is actually darker but it does a far better job of separating elements via contrast or division lines but not so in the Reaper theme (which I think was a bad choice because the usability is far more important than this flat thing). VSCode is used by millions, there is a reason that contrast is there. I still don't understand Lokasenna's reaper looks like a black screen finding, that is certainly not the case here as shown below.

Since everyone has different monitors - the image below, VSCode is clearly darker overall but it has contrast separation between elements. Since my monitor just happens to be calibrated, I can trust that conclusion for our reference purposes. So, I don't think the issue is too dark in all cases, it's contrast etc. In fact, I run the windows 10 dark them for the OS and even it is darker than Reaper V6.

All that said, you should at least look at the calibration chart, you may not do anything critical but if the monitor's brightness/contrast does happen to be off enough, everything you see on the monitor, could be easier on the eyes.

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Old 12-04-2019, 12:02 PM   #93
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesPeters View Post


I felt the same way, but the changes I wanted to make were easy to make with the old theme tweaker. See that file I attached in this previous post, in case it helps.
Thanks but not my taste it looks like Reaper 1 theme
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Old 12-04-2019, 12:44 PM   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dupont View Post
Thanks but not my taste it looks like Reaper 1 theme
Lol wow, I think your monitor may be broken.
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Old 12-04-2019, 08:00 PM   #95
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So hoping that somebody, anybody, whom is skilled at theming can fix this abomination. I've seen the videos appearing now with V6, and the more I see it the worse it looks and the more turned off I am to the new version. And that is the real disappointment, cuz I really do like Reaper.
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Old 12-05-2019, 12:19 AM   #96
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonybeepbeep View Post
did you tweak the fonts at all? A while back I changed my default W10 font and Reaper appeared to go a bit wonky.
Sorry, yes I did change the fonts to better suit my eyeballs. That's pretty easy to change though. The theme tweaker action (the original one, not the new theme adjuster script) allows you to filter (use the word "font" in the filter) then you can quickly swap out the fonts.

Or you can copy the font info from another theme into that .ReaperTheme pretty easily since all the font info is at the bottom of the .ReaperTheme document. It's in code, but if you want to copy all the fonts you don't have to understand the code since you're just copying/pasting. I describe how to do that here (that example is for copying over all the font and color info from Default 5). Just watch that you don't accidentally overwrite the "ui_img" info when copying/pasting the font info since for some reason it's in the middle of all the font info.
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Old Yesterday, 10:37 AM   #97
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Originally Posted by Evan View Post
If we come to the conclusion that we need to calibrate the monitor with photography-grade facilities, just to use a DAW... then something is definitely wrong.
Nobody said that. Reality is there are people using wacked out monitor settings and deciding what things look like on their monitor is "wrong".

White Tie's themes tend towards pastel variations color value more than FL Studio, that uses more saturated choices. Logic does the same, Pro Tools is just the dog's breakfast of plain saturation. Ableton uses stark and flat visualization.

In the case of Reaper, technically what people are on about is the presentation of color space and gamut. To get contrast out of a more pastel, shaded theme dark areas are going to be perceived in isolation as "darker" than the above mentioned DAWs. Reaper's default is going to be more sensitive to people who have their monitors set wrong. And being on Mac as well now with a different gamma means Mac people are probably going to want the same theme relatively darker than PC people.




You don't need photography grade tools to calibrate a monitor. But in the case of the Reaper default theme, complaints of it being too dark is most likely due to the monitor being adjusted wrong. The main track window appears to be 18% gray, which is "neutral gray" - neither dark nor light. I would suggest people that think it's too dark adjust their monitors so that the track window looks neither bright or dark, and THEN say "the theme is too dark". I find it needing more contrast on the control buttons/knobs/borders based on use, but that's not the same as it being too dark (or bright).
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Old Yesterday, 11:07 AM   #98
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chip mcdonald View Post
You don't need photography grade tools to calibrate a monitor. But in the case of the Reaper default theme, complaints of it being too dark is most likely due to the monitor being adjusted wrong. The main track window appears to be 18% gray, which is "neutral gray" - neither dark nor light. I would suggest people that think it's too dark adjust their monitors so that the track window looks neither bright or dark, and THEN say "the theme is too dark". I find it needing more contrast on the control buttons/knobs/borders based on use, but that's not the same as it being too dark (or bright).
The problem isn't just that it's a dark theme - as shown with the VS Code screenshot above, v6 is a very low-contrast dark theme.

If users have to properly calibrate their screen for the theme to work, that's a fail IMO just like a mix that only sounds good on flat monitors in a treated room. If it doesn't sound good with some amount of real-world imperfection it's arguably a bad mix.
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Old Yesterday, 04:48 PM   #99
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Most people have very low contrast and cheap TN- or (M)VA-panel displays. Even more people have unoptimal placement for their said monitor that distorts colors and lowers the already low contrast even lower (If you look any TN or VA panel from even a bit below or from the side, you'll lose a lot of contrast).

Large modern displays make this effect even worse since the edges of the displays are measured from one's eyes in high angle and the top of the display is above so you're looking it from below and that ruins the image. So if you're close to the monitor and it's like 27"+, you have issues at the edges for sure.

If you want to work, never get TN or VA panels, just use IPS. They have generally superior viewing angles, colors and don't lose nearly as much contrast and color accuracy when viewed from the side or below (though, even they aren't immune from viewing below)

All this is even before we say a word about the monitors SETTINGS, contrast brightness color etc... I come across so many displays constantly with people using them, where color and contrast are cranked to a 100, with low quality panel that usually means that colors just compress together regardless of what angle you're viewing them from making these issues even worse than they already are.

But all that being said! V6 theme has issues with contrast, especially how enabled toolbar buttons have almost the same look than disabled ones... I tried it on my properly calibrated IPS-display and nope... it doesn't have the clear distinction that one needs for quick glance to see if something's enabled or disabled.

There's a lot of work to do still and I'll probably wait till all this blows over and then tweak my current semi custom theme for V6 if nothing else works out.

Shame, Id want to get some music done instead of fixing issues in themes ;(
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Old Yesterday, 05:24 PM   #100
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chip mcdonald View Post
I would suggest people that think it's too dark adjust their monitors so that the track window looks neither bright or dark, and THEN say "the theme is too dark". I find it needing more contrast on the control buttons/knobs/borders based on use, but that's not the same as it being too dark (or bright).
i'm on a macpro retina with two 42" 4k displays. call it what you want, but there's a whole lotta grey on grey on grey. i could use more peacock and less elephant.
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Old Today, 10:39 AM   #101
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Originally Posted by Lokasenna View Post
The problem isn't just that it's a dark theme - as shown with the VS Code screenshot above, v6 is a very low-contrast dark theme.


I agree, that's what I'm referencing by saying people are really referencing GAMMA. I don't think it's too dark, in fact I think it's skewed towards bright.

I'm guessing he may be developing on a Mac, that has a 1.8 gamma instead of 2.2. This is my crummiest Windows monitor adjusted for 2.2 next to an IPad 3, that actually has full gamut and a 1.8 gamma.

I'm guessing most people complaining are looking at something like the left image; the Apple gamma looks perfect IMO.





(note the image was taken on my phone and is actually a bit bright/low constrast, but... it should still suffice to get my point across of the potential difference)

This situation is probably why some/most DAW developers, plugin developers, lean towards a slightly "cartoony" palette and tends towards shading only for skeuomorphic shadowing. FL Studio looks stark to some perhaps, but it's probably very legible in all sorts of "wild" monitor environments. Not lots of shades, color values with different luminosity. Logic X looks flatter from a luminosity standpoint, but uses color for delineation.

The default WT theme has a lot of green that has the same luminosity value as some of the grey, and I think that's what makes it less contrasty, and the overall shades are tilted upwards gamma-wise on less than ideal color space/small gamut monitors.


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Old Today, 10:43 AM   #102
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i'm on a macpro retina with two 42" 4k displays. call it what you want, but there's a whole lotta grey on grey on grey. i could use more peacock and less elephant.
Do you have an alternate color space or gamma installed (from a photo editing program)?
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Old Today, 10:57 AM   #103
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chip mcdonald View Post
I agree, that's what I'm referencing by saying people are really referencing GAMMA. I don't think it's too dark, in fact I think it's skewed towards bright.

I'm guessing he may be developing on a Mac, that has a 1.8 gamma instead of 2.2. This is my crummiest Windows monitor adjusted for 2.2 next to an IPad 3, that actually has full gamut and a 1.8 gamma.

...
Not sure what my settings might be, but the issue I have is this - adjusting things so that v6 is comfortable means that anything predominantly light/white, such as 3/4 of the web, nukes my eyeballs.

As far as calibration I've only ever gotten as far as "the monitor should not appear to be a light source" with a slight red shift for my poor eyeballs.
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