7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

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7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby diogo_cme » Thu Sep 19, 2013 2:29 am

Reporting.

"Pre-Section/Rack" aka Gain, Filters, Phase section has some glaring problems when narrowing down the channel width.

1 - Now we have to hover the mouse over the filters to see the values, otherwise they'll just say Low/Hi Cut. Really? Can we NOT have that? Just numeric values please, because the visual feedback is already very intuitive. We don't need the words. Just XX Hz / XX kHz and we're good.

2 - LPF: Weird stuff going on there and they're basically unusable when using short channel width. Once you enable the LPF and drag the slider it starts right, but it gets totally nuts after a few moves, making it impossible to see the values when dragging the slider because of weird font size and truncation. We have a very broken feature here due to bad visualization.

3 - Drop the "preset" button there, and BTW, you don't need to show it is every single damn rack. It makes expanding/collapsing the racks more difficult as it adds to the number of missed clicks, which is already high. I'd remove it from the rack section altogether and leave it in the right click menu.

BTW, there are way too many of those preset/color "triangle" icons, when they should ONLY be in the inserts. They make clicking clunkier. FWIW, I don't even the strip rack, and would be infuriated if oblidged to do so. I can't even imagine the ammount of missed clicks there.

Bottomline is: less things to click equals less missed clicks. Steinberg should have that in mind.

Besides the better channel naming scheme and the 1-click to open plugins, this is a underwhelming patch...specially if we considering all the time it took to be released. Time for the SB team to work hard, because we're over 9 months down the road with this mixer and it still needs a whole bunch of tweaking.

Regards,
Diogo C.
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby distante » Thu Sep 19, 2013 2:53 am

diogo_cme wrote:Reporting.

1 - Now we have to hover the mouse over the filters to see the values, otherwise they'll just say Low/Hi Cut. Really? Can we NOT have that? Just numeric values please, because the visual feedback is already very intuitive. We don't need the words. Just XX Hz / XX kHz and we're good.

2 - LPF: Weird stuff going on there and they're basically unusable when using short channel width. Once you enable the LPF and drag the slider it starts right, but it gets totally nuts after a few moves, making it impossible to see the values when dragging the slider because of weird font size and truncation. We have a very broken feature here due to bad visualization.

3 - Drop the "preset" button there, and BTW, you don't need to show it is every single damn rack. It makes expanding/collapsing the racks more difficult as it adds to the number of missed clicks, which is already high. I'd remove it from the rack section altogether and leave it in the right click menu.


+1 There,

All the other fixes seems are fine in my end.
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby G-string » Thu Sep 19, 2013 7:41 am

I personally like the way you hover over the "pre" for the frequencies on the filters ,it makes the whole filter section less cluttered and there is no problems here with the fonts using 22" HD monitors
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby Fabio Bartolini » Thu Sep 19, 2013 8:59 am

Hello,

point 1) makes sense.

2) Dragging the filters works as expected, no weird behaviour here.
The visualization of the value depends of course on the width of the mixer. If it's too narrow, values won't fit.
Making the font smaller to fit in there would make a lot more people complain, because it would be unreadable to some users.

3) The Presets button does not affect expanding, as when the Racks are collapsed clicking on the (greyed out at this stage) preset button will expand them and not open the presets dialogue.
As for collapsing, if the channels are too narrow to render easy to collapse, it is possible to also right-click -> Collapse Rack or use Alt+E

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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby distante » Thu Sep 19, 2013 2:01 pm

Good points
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby GargoyleStudio » Thu Sep 19, 2013 2:50 pm

Not a great fan of any hover-ability, I'd sooner see everything all the time and have it a little more cluttered.

+1 for for point 1). I really need to see the frequencies especially for the bass end because it's so sensitive down there. I'm quite often looking at small adjustments so the visual numbers are the only thing that can remind me just where I'm at with competing instruments/channels in this area.

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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby diogo_cme » Thu Sep 19, 2013 6:27 pm

Fabio Bartolini wrote:Hello,

point 1) makes sense.

2) Dragging the filters works as expected, no weird behaviour here.
The visualization of the value depends of course on the width of the mixer. If it's too narrow, values won't fit.
Making the font smaller to fit in there would make a lot more people complain, because it would be unreadable to some users.



It's not "the filters" - it's the LPF I'm talking about in #2. Have that in mind.

The LPF is not displaying the correct values when you drag the slider - it starts right then it gets weird, showing incomplete numbers.

Regardless of the channel's width, we should have correct values being displayed - otherwise it's a useless feature.

Fabio Bartolini wrote:
3) The Presets button does not affect expanding, as when the Racks are collapsed clicking on the (greyed out at this stage) preset button will expand them and not open the presets dialogue.
As for collapsing, if the channels are too narrow to render easy to collapse, it is possible to also right-click -> Collapse Rack or use Alt+E



Let me rephrase: it doesn't directly affect expanding, but it affects indirectly the expanding/collapsing of the racks since it takes those precious pixels we need to make the precise expand/collapse click.

Anyway, do we really need that "load preset" button everywhere? I don't think so. Remember my bottomline: less things to click means less missed clicks.
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby cubic13 » Thu Sep 19, 2013 7:14 pm

Another observation related to the 'Pre' rack : on MIDI channels, the Input transformer uses a slot. On instrument ones, it doesn't, which means that you don't have any visual information about whether the Input transformer is used on a such a track or not.

Seems strange to me and counter-intuitive : IMO, the Input transformer should appear either for all tracks that can use it or none of them...

Another thing : is there any way to make the pre-gain level permanently displayed instead of 'Gain', which is everything but informative ? A rather important setting when you are dealing with different things such as condenser mics, bass guitar through a high-Z connection or line levels...
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby Fabio Bartolini » Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:32 am

diogo_cme wrote:
It's not "the filters" - it's the LPF I'm talking about in #2. Have that in mind.

The LPF is not displaying the correct values when you drag the slider - it starts right then it gets weird, showing incomplete numbers.


Hello,

by the way, the LPF is a Low Pass Filter and it has the same layout of the High Pass Filter, that is why I wrote about "filters".

I'm aware it displays incomplete numbers, as it can show up to 5 digits - but if the mixer is shrunk, 4-5 digits just won't fit.

Cheers,
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby Fabio Bartolini » Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:38 am

diogo_cme wrote:Let me rephrase: it doesn't directly affect expanding, but it affects indirectly the expanding/collapsing of the racks since it takes those precious pixels we need to make the precise expand/collapse click.

Anyway, do we really need that "load preset" button everywhere? I don't think so. Remember my bottomline: less things to click means less missed clicks.


The presets buttons allow to manage the presets of each section. If they were not present in each section, many would complain they need to fiddle around in order to load presets for one or the other section.

Let's see if other users chime in and what they think about it.
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby diogo_cme » Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:12 pm

Fabio Bartolini wrote:The presets buttons allow to manage the presets of each section. If they were not present in each section, many would complain they need to fiddle around in order to load presets for one or the other section.

Let's see if other users chime in and what they think about it.


There's got be a better way of handling that because you're cluttering the mixer with a feature not everyone uses, but 99.9% of the userbase are actually using the mixer, right?

If you're relying THAT much on presets, make a dedicated menu for it so people can load presets for the desired rack.

One more time: please don't clutter the mixer.

Fabio Bartolini wrote:
by the way, the LPF is a Low Pass Filter and it has the same layout of the High Pass Filter, that is why I wrote about "filters".

I'm aware it displays incomplete numbers, as it can show up to 5 digits - but if the mixer is shrunk, 4-5 digits just won't fit.

Cheers,


There is a better way of handling that: Show 2 numbers + "k" until you reach 1kHz (20k-1k) and from there you can have 3 digits in the 999-100 range and 2 digits + "H" in the 99-20Hz range. This way you always have 2 numbers + k/H.

IMHO, I'd do it like the Waves SSL does it, but Waves SSL's filters can only up to a certain point while Cubase filters covers all the range. I would just fine with limited range on those filters, but I can understand if other users are not.

Regardless, my point is: when you have large track counts, those filters are really handy because of the quick access/very low cpu hit, BUT when you have large track counts you usually end up with a very narrow mixer. We gotta find a way to make the filters a hundred percent usable even with under the narrowest view.


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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby diogo_cme » Sun Sep 22, 2013 4:37 pm

These screenshots might help to justify my views.

LPF Filters - default (20kHz):

Image

Now double click to enter values:

Image

The HPF is fine until your reach the 4 digit barrier:

Image

...but once you reach it, it screws up as well. That's supposed to be 1.08kHz:

Image

...but OK when you click to enter values past the 1kHz/4digit barrier:

Image

That's screwed up, we gotta find a way around this. IMHO, those are very fair points I'm my raising. Any ideas towards making this section better are very welcome as this is a important part of the workflow and a great Cubase feature, but one that can be certainly improved.

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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby Fabio Bartolini » Sun Sep 22, 2013 5:34 pm

Hello,

yes, I did understand what you meant.

As previously stated, when the width is reduced, the problem remains.

With no indication (thus always displaying in Hz), there are up to 5 digits to display. Which won't fit when the strips are narrow. When reducing the number of digits (xx.xx), it is necessary to display either Hz or kHz, which won't fit as well.
Reducing the font's size is not a viable solution.

Your remarks have been forwarded, they will see what it is possible to implement.

Cheers,
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby diogo_cme » Sun Sep 22, 2013 7:53 pm

Fabio Bartolini wrote:Hello,

yes, I did understand what you meant.

As previously stated, when the width is reduced, the problem remains.

With no indication (thus always displaying in Hz), there are up to 5 digits to display. Which won't fit when the strips are narrow. When reducing the number of digits (xx.xx), it is necessary to display either Hz or kHz, which won't fit as well.

Reducing the font's size is not a viable solution.

Your remarks have been forwarded, they will see what it is possible to implement.

Cheers,


Thanks mate, appreciate it.

I'll post any ideas if they come to mind.

Cheers!
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby r.u.sirius » Sun Sep 22, 2013 9:05 pm

How about a zooming limit?
Displayed values should NEVER get funky!

On the other hand: the input gain/phase section was perfect in 6.5 and took much less room!
Rebuilt it and put the HP/LP-filters into the EQ section!
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby diogo_cme » Sun Sep 22, 2013 11:27 pm

r.u.sirius wrote:How about a zooming limit?
Displayed values should NEVER get funky!

On the other hand: the input gain/phase section was perfect in 6.5 and took much less room!
Rebuilt it and put the HP/LP-filters into the EQ section!


The zooming is fine right now, we can decently visualize a whole bunch of channels which is great. It's just a matter of finding the best arrangement for that pre section so we can have everything we need there and never go funky on it.

As for the filters, even though I would like a visual representation of them in all the equalizers windows, I'd keep the LPF/HPF controls in the pre rack. That's mainly because it gives you instant controls over the filters without having to leave the main mixer widow, and that greatly enhances the workflow. Handy when used with Q-Link as you can get a bunch of channels adjusted in a very fast way, something crucial when doing post or dealing with very large mixes.
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby DaDa » Mon Sep 23, 2013 12:58 am

r.u.sirius wrote:On the other hand: the input gain/phase section was perfect in 6.5 and took much less room!
Rebuilt it and put the HP/LP-filters into the EQ section!

YES !
Please !
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby curteye » Mon Sep 23, 2013 2:01 am

G-string wrote:I personally like the way you hover over the "pre" for the frequencies on the filters ,it makes the whole filter section less cluttered


+1
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby DaDa » Mon Sep 23, 2013 3:50 am

curteye wrote:
G-string wrote:I personally like the way you hover over the "pre" for the frequencies on the filters ,it makes the whole filter section less cluttered


+1
{'-'}

Well, this is a DAW and it's mixer.
If I want something clean and uncluttered, I'll take a walk at the lake ...

To work fast, I need all info at one glance.
There's no point in making a mixer hide information !
Really ... none, zilch, nada ...

Please, Steinberg, get back on track !
8-)

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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby fireinthefishtank » Mon Sep 23, 2013 4:52 am

There's no point in making a mixer hide information !
Really ... none, zilch, nada ...


There are plenty of reasons why it could be beneficial for a DAW to (have a mode) to hide numbers (it would be a cool function in Cubase to have the ability to turn ALL numeric values on and off with a key command or click) . Here is just one of the reasons:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-lN8vWm3m0#t=102

GUI-s, numbers, colors, etc. influence us while mixing. The visual has a huge impact on our decision making process.

Anybody who says its not affecting them, is either not entirely honest about it, or hasn't experienced enough placebo during work to know.

Just my two cents.

F-
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby G-string » Mon Sep 23, 2013 6:48 am

DaDa wrote:
curteye wrote:
G-string wrote:I personally like the way you hover over the "pre" for the frequencies on the filters ,it makes the whole filter section less cluttered


+1
{'-'}

Well, this is a DAW and it's mixer.
If I want something clean and uncluttered, I'll take a walk at the lake ...

To work fast, I need all info at one glance.
There's no point in making a mixer hide information !
Really ... none, zilch, nada ...

Please, Steinberg, get back on track !
8-)

Jan


that's your opinion of course ,as I said I like the way the filter section is uncluttered but if you can't see roughly where your filters are set and are completely incapable of hovering the mouse over to see the values then that's your personal issue ,not everyone works the same way as you . this is my personal opinion of course. ;)
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby DaDa » Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:14 pm

fireinthefishtank wrote:
There's no point in making a mixer hide information !
Really ... none, zilch, nada ...

There are plenty of reasons why it could be beneficial for a DAW to (have a mode) to hide numbers

I'm all ear !
8-)

fireinthefishtank wrote:GUI-s, numbers, colors, etc. influence us while mixing. The visual has a huge impact on our decision making process.

Yes, it speeds up mixing and helps making controlled decisions.

If anyone things he makes better mixes without visual aids, there's this very old trick :
close your eyes !
8-)

What next ?

Jan
Last edited by DaDa on Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby r.u.sirius » Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:25 pm

DaDa wrote:......

If anyone things he makes better mixes without visual aids, there's this very old trick :
close Your eyes !
8-)

Jan


haha, exactly my thoughts!

"oh, all those values, I cannot mix this way!" - ouch

;-)
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby DaDa » Mon Sep 23, 2013 1:43 pm

G-string wrote:
DaDa wrote:
G-string wrote:I personally like the way you hover over the "pre" for the frequencies on the filters ,it makes the whole filter section less cluttered

Well, this is a DAW and it's mixer.
If I want something clean and uncluttered, I'll take a walk at the lake ...

To work fast, I need all info at one glance.
There's no point in making a mixer hide information !
Really ... none, zilch, nada ...

that's your opinion of course ,as I said I like the way the filter section is uncluttered but if you can't see roughly where your filters are set and are completely incapable of hovering the mouse over to see the values then that's your personal issue ,not everyone works the same way as you . this is my personal opinion of course. ;)

Not an opinion.
Hovering slows down every comparison.
Not only talking about mixing, here.
Controlling 4 headphone mixes while recording, is a huge problem in V.7.
G-string wrote:as I said I like the way the filter section is uncluttered but if you can't see roughly where your filters are set and are completely incapable of hovering the mouse over to see the values then that's your personal issue ,not everyone works the same way as you . this is my personal opinion of course. ;)

Well ...
I can see roughly ... and that's OK for a Rough-Mix ...
Other than that, you'll get better results when working precisely.

And yes, I can make my mouse dance across the screen, 'till my arm can't take it anymore.
If I only had the time ...
8-)

And yes, only a few work the way I do.
( and that's not an opinion, as well ;) )
But all others would get better results in less time, if they would ...
8-)

Jan
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Re: 7.0.6's "pre" rack issues and mixer thoughts

Postby Plasuma » Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:23 pm

diogo_cme wrote:
Fabio Bartolini wrote:The presets buttons allow to manage the presets of each section. If they were not present in each section, many would complain they need to fiddle around in order to load presets for one or the other section.

Let's see if other users chime in and what they think about it.


There's got be a better way of handling that because you're cluttering the mixer with a feature not everyone uses, but 99.9% of the userbase are actually using the mixer, right?

If you're relying THAT much on presets, make a dedicated menu for it so people can load presets for the desired rack.

One more time: please don't clutter the mixer.

Yeah, nah. I use FX Chain presets all the time and that little button is pretty darn convenient. If you've got 40+ individual scenes to mix for a large cast sound play with tons of similar material, you'll be happy it's there.

diogo_cme wrote:Regardless, my point is: when you have large track counts, those filters are really handy because of the quick access/very low cpu hit, BUT when you have large track counts you usually end up with a very narrow mixer. We gotta find a way to make the filters a hundred percent usable even with under the narrowest view.

Nothing to disagree with there.

Maybe text size should be dependent on mixer zoom level, so it always fits? If the text is too small, you could just zoom in.

Some improvements that might help with mixer organization, so you wouldn't have to look at everything in tiny-mode, would involve the Channel Overview bar. If that had colored bands to reflect the colors of the individual tracks, that would help with visualizing where everything is. As it is, random peak meters showing up over a black background don't do much for anyone.

Colored bands or just little squares at the sides in the Visbility / Zones list would be handy, too. Even better, give them color-picker functionality (so I don't have to keep de-selecting whatever events in the project window to set a new color to a whole track).
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