Total color-customization map

Here’s some map of residual none-adjustable items for color customization through Edit>Preferences>Theme in Ardour 4.7.0.

I’ve made a “total-gray” theme to detect any none-customizable items.
My offer to add them to ‘my-dark.colors’-file so we could control them.
Personally I’m not a programmer, but I could do visual maps for working, if it has any benefit.

May be there’s a good value to make some list of residual items:

  1. transport_record_button_point>fill
  2. transport_record_button_point>blinked
  3. track_header_record_button_point>fill
  4. track_header_record_button_point>blinked…

But I don’t know how to call the items correctly.

Also I don’t know: may be, for example, Items 6,7,8,9,10 are the same with 50,51,52,53,54 inside the program? If so, I could correct that numbers in my map.

And finelly. If in future we want to customize every color, may be it would be good to make every new buttons or text items through the ‘my-dark.colors’-file?

Link to map:

Link to total-gray ‘my-dark.colors’-file:

Link to Bug Tracker report:

Two puzzles:

6,7,8,9,10, the other identical meter colors are defined in dark.colors, and you’ve already changed them in some of your themes.

The black base color has been described elsewhere (forums, or one of your bug reports).

Great work. This will definitely help us get the remaining colors into the theme definition rather than hard-coding them.

@paul just a quick guess based off what I see in the preview shots provided, it may be just the master bus meters that are hard coded, as even in the Cubase-Like theme in the theme pack, the preview shows the master meters a different color than the individual channel meters.


@seablade, yes.

@poul: I know about meter colors. They are in the palette too (I’ve changed them to gray), but
6,7,8,9,10 - are meter colors specially for Master Channel. If in Editor window I choose Master track the editor’s mixer strip appears in the left. It has the different colors ‘source’, then midi/audio/bus editor’s mixer strip. What is the ‘source’ I didn’t find (it’s not in the palette).
In my map-image the Master track is selected. I wanted to show specially that. But also I wanted to show the midi wire (34) which can’t be able in Master. That’s why I’ve made a fake cutout from midi channel and put it in front of master (by Inkscape). Sorry for that:). But now I’ve moved the cutout to the side and made a white rectangle around (34, 35).
I’ve replaced the map in google drive:

@poul: The black base color - if you mean 24, 25, 26 - yes I wrote it in BugTracker (about a barrier for light theme building).

@poul: Are the ‘dark.colors’ and ‘my-dark.colors’ - different? If so, where can I find the ‘dark.colors’-file in Linux?

@ cooltehno
The master channel “having it’s own colors” only applies when using the k"X"/RMS meters (which is the default IIRC). all the other meters use the regularly theme-able meter colors, except i think the BBC one may have it’s own, separate color, that is also theme-able.

dark.colors is the “original” file that is part of the program itself. “my-dark.colors” is written to $XDG_CONFIG/ardour4/ after a user edits any color. If $XDG_CONFIG/ardour4/my-dark.colors is found during startup then the program will not bother to load “dark.colors” from its own configuration files.

When we add multi-theme support, this will change so that the filename are <THEME-NAME>.colors and my-<THEME-NAME>.colors …

The master meters are probably different because they are not normal peak meters (K12?). I think Robin hard-coded the colors.

The K-meter colors are according to K-meter specs and should not be changed

Thanks, @braxtons12!
Sorry for my lack of education, how is this decrypted:

  1. k"X"/RMS;
  2. IIRC;
  3. BBC?
    If it’s programming terms and too much to exlpane - don’t waste the time for explanations:) Thanks anyway!

I can help you with the first two:

K12, K14, and K20 are a set of metering systems for mastering audio that Ardour supports. They’re an alternative to the dBFS or VU meters you’re normally using.

IIRC is “Internet speak” for “If I recall correctly”.

Thanks for answers, @paul!

@everybody: If something will be needed to change or add in my “theme design affairs”, just tell! :slight_smile:
(Just in case my Email:

Thanks, @adotm!

And “BBC” is British Broadcasting Corporation. I believe they developed their own metering system years ago.

Finally! I got the understanding :slight_smile:
The right click in area of numbers of meter gives the list of meter’s mode (I didn’t know about such ardour’s function). I’ve checked all of them and make some corrections in the map.

I’ve replaced the map in the google drive:

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“K-meter specs” - you mean some world standardized colors that would be better not change?

@Matt Francomb - thanks!

yes that’s what he means

Well, I got it, @braxtons12! Thanks!

I’ve just followed the cross-reference from Quick dumb question: can I change the status bar colours? – I had missed your earlier question from back when the forum didn’t have email notifications…

Correct. “green below the reference level, a 4dB yellow band above the reference level, and then red up to the clipping point.”

Learn to read the a K-meter once, and apply it everywhere. Thanks Mr. Katz.

In the linked image on google-drive this applies to all the K-meters 6-13,14-18, 50-57, 63-70.

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Thank you, Robin! :slight_smile:

It’s a nice image showing other remaining issues. Thanks for doing that!

Sadly most of the remaining ones are not easy fixes. The rec-arm red is probably the lowest hanging fruit of them all (1-4, 47,48, 61,62 are all the same, also the tape-track record reel is hardcoded red). That’s because the vector-icon is painted in a context where there’s no direct access to config-files to look up colors.

Others are harder to fix e.g. 39-45 are .png files with fixed color.