Basic Workflow Tips - Backdrops and Layouts

This forum is for sharing patches created with the updated Combinator, as well as backdrops and any backdrop assets.
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This forum is for sharing patches created with the updated Combinator, as well as backdrops and any backdrop assets. If you would like to share a patch here as an attachment, you must zip it first. Otherwise you can host your patches elsewhere and share the links here.
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joeyluck
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Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 16 Sep 2021

I wasn't even mathematical with my early combi2 patches. I just kept adjusting the size until it was just right. Because the other thing is making sure your screenshot image is cropped perfectly to account per pixel when doing the math.

I found that at different zoom levels, a line here or there was a bit different. So regardless, I found there was a lot of trial and error moving things, exporting, trying again, until I find a good compromise.

In my TAL-Vocoder patch, if you load it up, you'll see. I think this is accentuated by the lines that point (or should point) at the center of some knobs...or when trying to line up my stepped knob that isn't stepped.

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Faastwalker
Posts: 2046
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 16 Sep 2021

joeyluck wrote:
16 Sep 2021
I wasn't even mathematical with my early combi2 patches. I just kept adjusting the size until it was just right. Because the other thing is making sure your screenshot image is cropped perfectly to account per pixel when doing the math.

I found that at different zoom levels, a line here or there was a bit different. So regardless, I found there was a lot of trial and error moving things, exporting, trying again, until I find a good compromise.

In my TAL-Vocoder patch, if you load it up, you'll see. I think this is accentuated by the lines that point (or should point) at the center of some knobs...or when trying to line up my stepped knob that isn't stepped.
I made sure I zoomed far in and cropped right down to the edge of the Combi in my screen shot. That made it easy to crop correctly, giving me the 1508px width. As I said the calculation from that to scale up to 3700px wide was exactly 250%. I did try taking a screen shot with Reason at 240% zoom. But that didn't work at all. Percentage to scale up had a decimal placement something like .2465766..........!!! Nope :lol:

So I think Reason at 200%, screenshot then upscale to make it 3770px wide is the best I can do. As you said it may require a little trial and error regardless. But if there was a way to get your Combi2 layout screenshot at 3770 I think that would be awesome and should be much more accurate to work with in your editor. I wonder if it could be added to Reason as an export feature? I like the idea but may not be easy. I'm also curious to learn about the magic 3770 number and how that relates to the rack. Why 3770? Why not 3780 or 4000?! I guess it's just the pixel count at maximum zoom on a hi-res 4K display? Not sure.

Your TAL-Vocoder backdrop is awesome. Looks really, really good. Do you do this in Gimp? Gimp looks very powerful and it's amazing it's still free. But I'm struggling with moving on from Photoshop. I'll just have to learn Gimp and try and stick with it. I'm struggling with simple things like scaling elements, snapping to guides etc. Things that were 2nd nature in PS. I've been watching some vids on YouTube. Riveting stuff! I'd rather be making Combi2 patches and skinning them! :D

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Faastwalker
Posts: 2046
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 16 Sep 2021

selig wrote:
01 Sep 2021
Further, if you start by creating a grid or simple alignment image and loading it into the Combinator, then you can align it more quickly back in the graphics application.
Fantastic tip. I missed that first read! :oops: Really helps to check alignment. Why didn't I think of that?! :? Tried it immediately - In Gimp I added a few red 'cross hairs' to my 3700px template and exported this as a .png file;

Image


I loaded this into my Combinator and scaled Reason to 200%. Then took a screenshot, opened back into Gimp and cropped down to width of the Combinator very precisely (zoom way, way in);

Image


I then scaled up by the required (in my case) 250%, copied this and pasted back as a new layer in my Gimp template file I'd created the 'cross hairs' in;

Image


With this layer set to 40% opacity you can see that the 'cross hairs' line up perfectly, albeit they are a little fuzzy because of the screen shot up-scaling by 250%. But alignment looks spot on. Sweet :clap:

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Ottostrom
Posts: 696
Joined: 13 May 2016

Post 16 Sep 2021

Loque wrote:
15 Sep 2021
Reading all the problems with the layout and my own experience, the new Combinator needs two things:
1. A picture export in full size of current layout
2. A simple reload/refresh button of the backdrop image

And yea, a simple grid to layout controls.
These two features would help a lot!
A scaled down version of the picture could also be used for the combinator so they would look like REs when added to a favorites list in the browser :)

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Faastwalker
Posts: 2046
Joined: 15 Jan 2015

Post 27 Sep 2021

Ottostrom wrote:
16 Sep 2021
Loque wrote:
15 Sep 2021
Reading all the problems with the layout and my own experience, the new Combinator needs two things:
1. A picture export in full size of current layout
2. A simple reload/refresh button of the backdrop image

And yea, a simple grid to layout controls.
These two features would help a lot!
A scaled down version of the picture could also be used for the combinator so they would look like REs when added to a favorites list in the browser :)
Good idea :thumbup:

But how handy would it be if we could export our Combi2 layouts as image files at exactly 3770 pixels wide? Super handy. No more scaling woes :cool:

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Loque
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Posts: 9531
Joined: 28 Dec 2015

Post 27 Sep 2021

Faastwalker wrote:
27 Sep 2021
...
But how handy would it be if we could export our Combi2 layouts as image files at exactly 3770 pixels wide? Super handy. No more scaling woes :cool:
^^^^^^^THIS :!: :!: :!:
Reason12, Win10

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Ottostrom
Posts: 696
Joined: 13 May 2016

Post 27 Sep 2021

Yup.
Getting the correct layout for your custom controls is such an essential part in making a nice backdrop and the current method feels pretty untrustworthy.

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