Old 09-09-2017, 06:17 AM   #1
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Default RE[a]DD...

Hi, all

This theme has a history a little checkered ; its initial creator, Cal, is no longer being able to finalize it. Cincikat69 has then worked on it in several directions, as the theme was rather at a mockup state than a functional one when he received it. He then had to interrupt its work for personal reasons, so, with his agreement, hopi has passed three months ago the project to me and asked me to take a look on all this and see if something usable could be obtained from it.

So, here it is : a kind of 'vintage' theme which follows (more or less...) the REDD mixers look, these being used fifty years ago in Abbey Road studios... As much as I could, I tried to keep the graphic design of the theme original conceptor when editing the already existing graphic files. Then, I added several other ones, which were missing, in the same spirit and rewritten completely the rtconfig.txt file.

In it, you'll find VCA/Group layouts, horizontal meters ones and a fully redimensionable transport panel. Beside this, and more technically, both the mixer faders and meters have been calibrated for a -72/+6 dB range. I didn't use the version 5 statement in rtconfig.txt file header, as I think that this theme works fine with the way Reaper, previously to 5.xx versions, was tinting the tcp panels background while letting several appearance options still available to the user in the 'Preferences' window. As usual in my themes, I added to the zip file four toolbars (.ReaperMenu extension) which should be put in the \MenuSets subfolder of your Reaper installation then loaded with the 'Options-Customize menus/toolbars...' command.


At the end, I would really like to thank hopi for his continual support and suggestions done during the development of this theme and the test phase that followed.

Let me know what could be misbehaving and also any suggestion to improve it...

The link : https://stash.reaper.fm/theme/2054/RE%5Ba%5DDD.zip






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Old 09-09-2017, 10:40 PM   #2
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Hey Cubic... thanks for the kind words.... IMHO you deserve a huge bundle of credit for bringing this to the Reaper community...

It's been a journey!!!
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Old 09-10-2017, 02:15 AM   #3
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Wonderfull work!
I think it just misses à tes shadows here and there to have a coherent shaping.
If you have shadows under the buttons then you need shadows under the pan knob.
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Old 09-10-2017, 02:16 AM   #4
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"A journey"... yes, indeed, a bit of one. It seems to have turned out well...so, I guess we did alright. (~;
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Old 09-10-2017, 03:06 AM   #5
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Fantastic theme! I absolutely love this. Great work!

How do we calibrate the mixer faders and meters for the -72/+6 dB range? Obviously, I'm at default and it's showing -6 on the faders at 0db. Thanks.

UPDATE: got it. For anyone else wondering how:

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Old 09-10-2017, 05:14 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Retro Audio Enthusiast View Post
Fantastic theme! I absolutely love this. Great work!
Yes, this is a fantastic looking theme! Kudos to cubic13!

Quote:
How do we calibrate the mixer faders and meters for the -72/+6 dB range? Obviously, I'm at default and it's showing -6 on the faders at 0db. Thanks.

Yes, I noticed that too. My Master fader is set to the -6db line even though the actual level is 0db. A bit confusing.....would like to have both fader and actual volume level match @ 0db. I thought there was maybe a setting I had changed, but I checked the REAPER default 5 theme and it shows 0db on the master fader. Switch back to the RE[a]DD theme and the fader shows -6db again.

Cheers,

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Old 09-10-2017, 05:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Retro Audio Enthusiast View Post
Fantastic theme! I absolutely love this. Great work!

How do we calibrate the mixer faders and meters for the -72/+6 dB range? Obviously, I'm at default and it's showing -6 on the faders at 0db. Thanks.

UPDATE: got it. For anyone else wondering how:

Yes, that seems to have fixed it. I wonder why this needed to be changed from the default that works with all the other themes I have.
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Old 09-10-2017, 06:14 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by pyerbass View Post
Wonderfull work!
I think it just misses à tes shadows here and there to have a coherent shaping.
If you have shadows under the buttons then you need shadows under the pan knob.
I see shadows there, so what are you talking about?
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Old 09-10-2017, 06:45 AM   #9
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Thanks to you all !

Few comments...

@pyerbass
As hopi said, there are indeed shadows on the pan/width knobs but they aren't pronounced enough, compared to the buttons, I admit. So, I'll try to make them more evident for a next update...

Beside this, another thing that I would like to correct is the brightness of the meters in the tcp panels. Much too bright, in my view, compared to the mcp ones. Another correction to do...

@Retro Audio Enthusiast & billybk1
Yes, this setting must be put as you show it. But also both the 'Meter minimum value' and the 'max value' ones should be setted respectively at -72 and +6dB. Beside this, I always had all these settings at the values above, so I thought that these were the default ones. Maybe I'm wrong...
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Old 09-11-2017, 01:43 AM   #10
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Been itching to try this ever since those first mockups showed up. Oh and well done to all of you that were involved.
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Old 09-12-2017, 04:31 PM   #11
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Thanks for picking up and finishing this theme cubic. Considering the possible issue about the meter/fader ranges, the default Reaper values are definitely -72dB for the min and +12dB for the max.
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Old 09-13-2017, 03:30 AM   #12
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Thanks to all the people who lent a hand for this very fine theme.
Simply love it !
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Old 09-13-2017, 06:42 AM   #13
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about the shadows thing...

just my opinion but... I don't think the shadows should be any darker...

FYI in the development of this theme, an early version had much darker shadows on buttons and knobs... and it made for a 'hard to read' situation...

So Cubic made them somewhat lighter and IMO it worked much better...

When you have a dark item and then a shadow there can be visual confusion...

Same it true when the shadow extend over any text ...
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Old 09-13-2017, 09:31 AM   #14
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Thanks also to you three for your reactions.

@xpander
So, it's +12 instead of +6dB. I probably done at a very early stage (when starting to use Reaper) the change, as I don't even remember about it. Honestly, I don't want to go again for the tedious recalibration work of all this, which implies also a redesign of the whole mcp.volume and mcp.meters backgrounds. So, too bad, I'm going to let it as it is, at least for a while. Thanks for the info.

@hopi
Hi, mate. I wasn't thinking of making them more darker but making them more long under the knobs themselves. AFAICS in the very few pictures of the original REDD series that I could gather, they are quite high over the surface of the device, so it would make sense, in my view, to make the shadows more visible when compared to the buttons. Think I'm for another Knobman session...
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Old 09-13-2017, 01:49 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cubic13 View Post
Thanks also to you three for your reactions.

@xpander
So, it's +12 instead of +6dB. I probably done at a very early stage (when starting to use Reaper) the change, as I don't even remember about it. Honestly, I don't want to go again for the tedious recalibration work of all this, which implies also a redesign of the whole mcp.volume and mcp.meters backgrounds. So, too bad, I'm going to let it as it is, at least for a while. Thanks for the info.

@hopi
Hi, mate. I wasn't thinking of making them more darker but making them more long under the knobs themselves. AFAICS in the very few pictures of the original REDD series that I could gather, they are quite high over the surface of the device, so it would make sense, in my view, to make the shadows more visible when compared to the buttons. Think I'm for another Knobman session...
Yeah - they had almost identical faders at the old Nashville RCA B studio and they are TALL in the saddle. the actual curved section that the fader runs in stands about an inch or so proud of the desk at the centre of its travel! More like controls on an old fashioned boat or a railway signal box!
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Old 09-14-2017, 03:39 PM   #16
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Default Wonderful!!

First, I want to thank you! What a beautiful piece of work!
Do I have your permission to refine it a bit? I mean, push it a little further to the original? This is the first step of many others that'll follow.
What do you think?
https://3ja9qw.bn1304.livefilestore....&cropmode=none

cheers,
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Old 09-14-2017, 03:46 PM   #17
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Unfortunately, I didn't make it to insert a picture, so I had to do it with a cloud link.
My plan is to replace the pan knobs with 3D-knobs and to re-design the illuminated buttons to improve the "glowing" a bit.

Of course only if you allow me to do so. :-)
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Old 09-15-2017, 07:28 PM   #18
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Very cool.
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Old 09-15-2017, 08:13 PM   #19
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OIC taller knobs means longer shadows.... well I suppose it's worth a look
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Old 09-16-2017, 12:32 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joesi View Post
First, I want to thank you! What a beautiful piece of work!
Do I have your permission to refine it a bit? I mean, push it a little further to the original? This is the first step of many others that'll follow.
What do you think?
https://3ja9qw.bn1304.livefilestore....&cropmode=none

cheers,
Joesi
Hi, Joesi

Good job ! You just did exactly what I have in mind for a next update, as I was actually planning to integrate this original surface color of the REDD series which is missing, in my view.

The problem is that, for this to work efficiently (the background color of the mixer staying stable, no matter the track color choosed by the user), the Tint track panel backgrounds option in the preferences needs to be unchecked, the 'real' color backgrounds being added as layouts for both the tcp and the mixer. Another way would be to create a new version of the theme including the version 5 instruction in the rtconfig.txt header. This one would have included, maybe, a thin area showing the actual track color near the meters in the tcp and involving the strip labels in the mixer.

I still haven't made my mind about the best solution, but the added layouts would probably be more efficient, at least at a first stage.

So, of course, you can use it and do your own mod theme or allow me to integrate this in a futur version of mine. But if you have more improvements in mind, it's probably better to do your own version. We could discuss this via PM : just let me know...
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Old 09-16-2017, 01:13 AM   #21
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Cubic -

When I sent the files along, there should have been a folder with the start of the elements to incorporate an alternative "REDD-like" layout option...more of an actual REDD than the TGI scheme. My original plans included this option so that the user could choose which "vintage console" they want...or any combination. If you still have those, that could make things a bit easier for you...
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Old 09-16-2017, 01:25 AM   #22
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Hi, cincikat

You're right... I completely neglect it until now, focusing on what was directly in the first subfolder containing the graphic files. So, I'm going to look more closely at its content and see what I can do with it. Thanks for reminding me this !
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Old 09-16-2017, 06:01 AM   #23
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Thanks cubic. I changed some of the buttons and the meters to my personal taste. BTW, if found some png-elements you could use let me know, I can send them to you.
https://3zbotq.bn1304.livefilestore....&cropmode=none
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Old 09-16-2017, 04:58 PM   #24
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Great work, guys!
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Old 09-16-2017, 11:27 PM   #25
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@coolbass : Thanks !

@Joesi : not bad, but I still prefer the 'worn out' look on the mcp meters...

Beside this, I updated the history part of the presentation in my first post, as I got precisions that clearly show that there actually have been only three persons involved in the development of this project : Cal, the original conceptor, Cincikat69 and I. So, I thought that a correction was due...
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Old 09-29-2017, 10:45 PM   #26
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Default v1.10 is in the stash...

A first update that fixes or improves several things, not truely essential, but gives, I think, a more achieved look and feel of the whole thing. So, mainly :

- Fixed : the incorrect display of the envelope buttons in the routing window (gen_env* controls).
- Added : original tint layouts (the creamy white color of the REDD series) for all panels, excepting the transport one.
- Improved : more visible shadows on the pan/width controls in the mixer.
- Improved : the meters display both in tcp (I dimmed them a little as they were too bright, in my view) and mcp (this, to allow readouts display also with the narrow layouts).
- Improved : the background display of the mixer panels. Essentially, I reshaped the screws with two aims : first, their lightning follow now the same vertical one as the other controls and, more important, they are no longer tinted with the background itself, which wasn't making sense, IMO. While I was at it, I did the same thing for the meters backgrounds.
- Reshaped (a little) : recarm, pan/width controls and faders both in mcp and tcp.
- Rearranged : the VCA/Group layouts in the mixer. The result is debatable, but I had to put the mcp.volume.label control somewhere...

@users of the initial version : only the .ReaperThemeZip file needs an update.

Let me know what could still be improved...
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Old 09-30-2017, 06:36 AM   #27
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cubic - This is a great theme. VERY easy on these aging eyes.

After a very brief run, the only thing I would change is the hi-lighting of the faders in the mix view. I get that they are done this way for a 3D look, but I find it a bit distracting.

I'm planning to add the toolbars and try this out for a while.

Many thanks
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Old 09-30-2017, 10:40 PM   #28
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Hi, Bob, and thank for chiming in.

About the highlighting of the faders, do you talk about the thumbs or the shadows under them ?

If the shadows are concerned, yes, maybe I could try to rework them a little, but I'm afraid that the thumbs themselves cannot be changed or only marginally, as the faders used in the REDD series were very prominent (at least 2 inches above the surface) and the thumbs used in the theme are designed to reflect this.
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Old 10-01-2017, 06:23 AM   #29
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First, I used this quite a bit yesterday and I've gotten used to the hi-lighting somewhat. This is a minor thing in The Grand Scheme.

I'm referring to the shading/hi-lighting of the scale and the surrounding frame, not the thumb/control itself.

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Old 10-01-2017, 03:20 PM   #30
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I just came here to post the very same critique. The realistic glare effect on the faders makes it a little hard to see the meters. Thanks!
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Old 10-01-2017, 03:44 PM   #31
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I just came here to post the very same critique. The realistic glare effect on the faders makes it a little hard to see the meters. Thanks!
It's like they're too real. Get a dozen or so lined up and I'm reaching for sun glasses
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Old 10-01-2017, 05:56 PM   #32
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They are curved on the actual hardware consoles, so the graphics are made to reflect that realism.

It is a hardware emulation theme...
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Old 10-01-2017, 06:00 PM   #33
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They are curved on the actual hardware consoles, so the graphics are made to reflect that realism.

It is a hardware emulation theme...
Yes, I acknowledged that in the OP. I've never mixed on the original hardware, but I image one could lean one way or another to get around glare when necessary

I'm NOT dissing the work done here. It is very, very nicely done. I'm just being honest about the fact that the hi-light down a row of faders is distracting.
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Old 10-01-2017, 07:53 PM   #34
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Yes, I acknowledged that in the OP. I've never mixed on the original hardware, but I image one could lean one way or another to get around glare when necessary

I'm NOT dissing the work done here. It is very, very nicely done. I'm just being honest about the fact that the hi-light down a row of faders is distracting.
Exactly...Beautiful, but not easy enough on the eyes yet..Thanks for the amazing work!

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Old 10-02-2017, 01:40 AM   #35
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remember when all our monitors had brightness and contrast controls? I sometimes miss that...
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Old 10-02-2017, 03:12 AM   #36
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Quote:
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remember when all our monitors had brightness and contrast controls? I sometimes miss that...
They still have, but you control them through menus now.
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Old 10-02-2017, 09:54 AM   #37
cubic13
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Well, honestly, I don't know how to answer to this and, as cincikat rightly said, it's firstly a hardware emulation with its own character. Maybe it's a monitor setting issue ; I have checked mine again and there is nothing special, really : Brightness -> 50/100, sharpness -> 62/100 and 'Group view' as value for the Samsung 'Magic angle' setting.

Originally, the scale on the faders didn't have the lightning gradient. I added it as I wanted it to follow the background one which I only marginally changed.

Maybe I could dim all this, but I honestly think that it would more or less alter the character of the theme. There are few pictures of REDD mixers available on the net which clearly show how much the volume/fader block was curved, from which the lightning : it's really an aspect which makes the REDD series special, so, I wouldn't like to change it, to be honest...
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Old 10-02-2017, 12:50 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ivansc View Post
remember when all our monitors had brightness and contrast controls? I sometimes miss that...
Thanks for the helpful tip!
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Old 10-02-2017, 12:51 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cubic13 View Post
Well, honestly, I don't know how to answer to this and, as cincikat rightly said, it's firstly a hardware emulation with its own character. Maybe it's a monitor setting issue ; I have checked mine again and there is nothing special, really : Brightness -> 50/100, sharpness -> 62/100 and 'Group view' as value for the Samsung 'Magic angle' setting.

Originally, the scale on the faders didn't have the lightning gradient. I added it as I wanted it to follow the background one which I only marginally changed.

Maybe I could dim all this, but I honestly think that it would more or less alter the character of the theme. There are few pictures of REDD mixers available on the net which clearly show how much the volume/fader block was curved, from which the lightning : it's really an aspect which makes the REDD series special, so, I wouldn't like to change it, to be honest...
It's your theme, your vision. Just giving my own feedback on it.

Note the glasses

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Last edited by BobF; 10-02-2017 at 12:56 PM.
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Old 10-03-2017, 08:09 PM   #40
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yeah was gonna say... if the glare bugs ya, wear some shades...

or if it REALLY bothers you then unpack the theme and alter the png files for that with your own photoshop expertise...
thereby making your own 'perfect' customized just for you version...

hahaha

imagining the forum conversation with DaVinci...

"Hey Leo, great painting... beautiful girl but I think that smile should be a little different, expecially at the corners of the mouth..."
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