|Author||Topic: Knobs vs. faders|
Posted: 25th September 2003 21:23
I was just thinking about why developers of plugins are still designing their soft-gear with knobs. Isnīt that something which was there on hardware to save space or give an easier overview because a 24-mixer which would have faders for the EQīs as well as for the volume would be a bit too confusing to look at?
So of course a useable fader takes up more space on the screen, but isnīt it much easier to handle as well as getting an instant impression of how much the given parameter has been turned up?
I figure that knobs are used in software only to make things look more like hardware, but in my opinion it kills some of the functionality.
Was just wondering what other people think about this...
Posted: 25th September 2003 23:55
An example for Reverb:
Wavelabs NaturalVerb (with sliders) is really easy to use compared with
Ambience(with knobs). I don't talk here about quality of the reverb.
Of course Ambience is the better sounding one.
And I like both GUIs (and sounds) very much.
Sliders are simply easier to control with the mouse.
But in some plugins (like Ambience) there are too many parameters
to build a slider-GUI. Better a small plugin than a big one which fits more than half of the screen.
Programmers: If possible make plugins with sliders, please.
Posted: 26th September 2003 19:01
Combination of knobs and sliders is the best, it makes interface much more clear than just sliders or just knobs.
But I actually like knobs better (also on software), because you can change theit sensitivity to mouse movements. Of course you can do that with sliders too, but it's just weird if they don't follow mouse like they should. Sliders are better where you need immidiate visual representation of parameter, r.g. for envelopes and such stuff.
Posted: 26th September 2003 20:35
Ok, good to see some different opinions here. From what you say there Iīm convinced that there are people outthere who just find it easier to work with knobs in some situations, but I needed to see it
Well, knobs arenīt so bad when designed the right way, but many are not. I think itīs in Virsyn Tera where you can see the color of the area around the knob changing corresponding to how much itīs turned up. Thatīs a great idea!
Posted: 26th September 2003 20:53
knob are not a problem in my mind
as long as they have a linear handling...
cause circular it's too hard when you close u eyes and have to go round
with the mouse
Posted: 27th September 2003 00:31
i like knobs, i like how they look but mostly because they save screen space.
i'm designing my first gui at the moment i see why particularly a lot of freeware vsts use sliders exclusively, preparing the graphics for a knob takes a lot more time.
Posted: 27th September 2003 04:35
I am quite amazed that some 'feel' a difference between virtual knobs and sliders.. As long as the knobs are responding linear, it's the same handeling as sliders.. You just push your mouse up and down, right?
I think developers should do more with XY-pads, cause it's the only way you can control more than one parameter in realtime with the mouse..
Posted: 27th September 2003 04:54
..if you are interested you will find various knob graphics at http://www.krakli.co.uk on the forum pages under synthedit development... free knobs
Posted: 27th September 2003 05:27
At a developer's point of view,
Combination of knobs and sliders is the best,
if only use sliders or knobs
the plugin looks so cheep.
but if only use sliders of knobs,
the code of plugin will be some-short...
At a customer's point of view,
knobs are hard to control,
only sliders are easy to control
(XY-Pad and some are based on sliders)
So, I dont like knobs for control,
but I like knobs for graphic...
Posted: 27th September 2003 06:19
(are there an x/y controllers that also use the mousewheel? = control of three params at once. Is that possible in a vst?)
Posted: 27th September 2003 07:49
sliders all the way here for preference
(unless your knobs work just like the ohmforce ones which are fantastic)
Posted: 27th September 2003 12:38
This is strange.. Iīve just had a late siesta, and dreamt about these faders and knobs. Before any dream analysts come up with something spooky, I better tell that there are other things in life bothering me so much more, so the fader is no phallic symbol nor is the knob a nibble-one!
I dreamt about a knob that in the middle of it had the number corresponding to its value showing. It should always be in percentage, unless of course in special cases where the knob have 16 different filters that canīt be translated into a percentage value. But in that case itīd prolly be better with something else than a knob, although the filtername could as well be shown on the knob.
Above the knob was a small fader, horizontal, reacting to the mouse movement together with the knob.
The advantage would be that thereīd be no need of different values written around the knob, because the present value would be indicated in real time ON the knob itself, and therefore it could be with a font big enough to be easy to read, but not take up more space in the whole GUI.
I donīt think Iīve ever seen this, but please tell me if itīs outthere. If it is, donīt you still think itīs a great way to quickly get an overview of the values?
The little fader above the knob is not as amazing a feature, but would also come in handy if used with care by the gui-designer.
Would like to know what you think about my dream, and remember that according to the new software patents law I can sue somebody else for using this even if they never read this text
Have a nice weekend!
Posted: 27th September 2003 12:43
ianweb beat you to it.. check the forums section at his url (above). I think it's a useful idea.
Posted: 27th September 2003 12:44
i think ian krakli has just done something like this on one of his SE vsti
clever sod that he is
Posted: 27th September 2003 13:05
This is weird, cause I didnīt check that forum before! But I now see that this guy came up with what looks like the same idea! How odd, but nice to know that this means that it wonīt be stuck in this little thread.
Itīs funny.. Iīve noticed before when I come up with an idea that shortly after or before, someone would come up with/came up with the same idea. I suppose itīs due to that the human brain tries to seek ways of solving problems, and its needless to say that Iīm not the only person not liking knobs in vstiīs too much, so there had to be someone else coming up with this.
The same happened when I like 3-4 years ago thought about how the spam problems could be solved, and suddenly there were programs outthere doing what I had been thinking about. I wonīt get into details about what that was, Iīm already off-topic talking about how people get the same ideas almost simultaneously
Posted: 27th September 2003 13:15
you know what ???
i was thinking this EXACT same thing just before i clicked on this threads link !!!
Posted: 27th September 2003 13:20
I love GUI's that have text boxes. Ive been working with stuff long enough and often enough to know the value I want nearly exactly most of the time, so being able to input a value is awesome. I rarely use plugins that cant be reset to a specific value again quickly effect or synth. With the exception of Eq's... just becayse eqs are special
Posted: 27th September 2003 13:24
Are we aliens???
Posted: 27th September 2003 13:47
well - i MIGHT be ...
but only if aliens are unfunny bastards with a sarcastic sense of humour
Posted: 27th September 2003 15:22
numbers on knobs were already used in some mods for Rebirth 3 years ago, just FIY, also some old Orion skin I think had that knobs with display on,
BTW I agree that a mix of knobs and sliders makes the
GUI easier to understand,
about display for values, IMHO they should be limited
to the min absolutely necessary, to stimulate making sound with ears and not with eyes
Posted: 27th September 2003 15:43
This is so true!!! I've even disabled the hints in Reason once, and I would leave them disabled if there was a simple way to check them out (sometimes you must know the exact value, and it's just to much work to go into prefs and enable them).
Another option is to close your eyes while mixing or setting a specific parameter in synth (just click the controller before doing this ). I can get much better sound this way.
Posted: 27th September 2003 17:46
I like knobs, and I like numbers.