High contrast UI theme for Camtasia 9

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This conversation has been merged. Please reference the main conversation: Camtasia 9 Interface (UI)

The Camtasia 9 UI is HORRIBLE on dim displays, in bright environments or for folks with visual impairments. The color scheme boils down to "very dark grey - dark grey - somewhat light gray". While this may look fancy, the theme is nothing but horrendous from a usability and accessibility standpoint.

Where can I change the theme into a high-contrast version?

Kind regards, Malte
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Tutoren Methodenlehre

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Posted 3 years ago

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Naomi Skarzinski

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Although I strongly agree with you, this seems to be the direction everyone is going. Almost all of Adobe products are using this color combination.  YouTube is even experimenting with a dark grey background. It certainly doesn't make it easy on those of us who don't have perfect eyesight. I'm not sure why the software industries are going this route.
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Tutoren Methodenlehre

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I totally see your point. At least, however, Adobe allows to chose from a couple of different color schemes for the UI. I find the "light" scheme to improve things somewhat.
(Edited)
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Joe Morgan

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Hello nami , I appreciate where your coming from.

Theres a reason everyone is following Adobe's lead.Dark colors are easier on the eyes, especially over long periods of time.
Although, at the very least, you should have the ability to control how dark or light the UI looks overall.

 I used Adobe's CS6 Suite for years. They quit updating CS6 around 4 years ago I believe.

You could control how Dark or Light the interface was overall and choose any shade in-between.
Switches, Icons, etc. were different colors and you can customize a lot of them.
 I've never cared for the light interface myself.

The main point is this,the interface has a lot of Clarity.No complaints from me there.
It's easy to read at any brightness level and that's simply not true with Camtasia 9 or SnagIt 13.

I use both programs extensively. So I would very much like to see TechSmith improve this.

See outdated CS6 Examples Below, Click to enlarge.



The Current Creative Cloud interface is Improved with even more adjustments.
The currently selected tools, Windows and Current Pertinent information is highlighted in Blue.You have some control over how bright the blue appears as well.

Same with highlighted clips,tracks, effects, etc..You can control many facets of the interface.

And once again,everything is easy to read.I picked an in-between example below. You can go as dark or light as the example above.

Regards,Joe

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Naomi Skarzinski

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I agree with you completely.  I actually have my Creative Cloud on the darkest settings as that is easier for me to handle. I know TechSmith is always looking at ways they can improve things.  Maybe the ability to choose the UI lightness or darkness could be a new feature for the future.  Fingers crossed.  :-) 
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ExpertNovice

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I struggle even with the low contrast of Windows 10 and spend a lot of time modifying the computers I work on, including registry hacks.

I have a hard time reading Naomi's reply when IE11 is set at 100% because the text appears dark-gray and the background is light gray.  This text is readable because the background is white.  Although, I still increase the view to 125%.

While I paid for C9 I knew to wait before installing.  Then, I saw images of the low contrast and small fonts being used.  Based on those and the many comments C9 is unusable by me.

For those defending or downplaying this issue by stating (1) it is better for me and (2) everyone is using low-contrast.  I pray when they begin to have vision problems people won't dismiss their requests.

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Tutoren Methodenlehre

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I could not agree more!

Let me add one point in regards to those who defend the "modern" gray-on-gray aesthetic. We are not talking about an either/or type situation. Defining the color scheme for software like Camtasia amounts to not much more than a file with a couple dozen color definitions in it.

It takes only a few lines of code to give the user the option to change between color schemes, and it takes a skilled person a few hours to come up with an alternative color scheme. In fact, you wouldn't even need to do this. Just create a simple color scheme editor and see what the community comes up with.

So to me, the omission of a high contrast color scheme boils down to nothing more than ignorance, thoughtlessness, and a general lack of sensitivity to the needs other people.
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Joe Morgan

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I hate to say it but, I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for improvement.

When SnagIt 12 was first released, users screamed Bloody Murder! Many complained about the poor visibility of the New Dark Themed UI.

TechSmith responded by telling everyone they would improve it. They also posted the following “Official Response”.

In the coming week, I will be reaching out with a few mockups for our idea of the light theme in hopes to gain your insights and feedback. 

https://feedback.techsmith.com/techsmith/topics/snagit_12_color_scheme_is_so_dark_can_it_be_changed

Then never reached out with any Mockups.

The UI wasn’t changed or redesigned for at least 2 months. Long enough that if you didn’t return SnagIt for a refund, the 30-day window to “Do So”, had long expired.

The new UI was created by simply inverting the gray and black colors. It was a halfhearted effort at best to appease all  who complained.


I like SnagIt and Camtasia a lot, it they alienate enough people by ignoring the basics. Like eye strain induced by the UI. The practice could catch up with them and put future versions of their programs in Jeopardy. 



Regards, Joe

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Rick Stone

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Perhaps Joe wasn't among those they reached out to, but TechSmith did actually reach out to folks in the user community. So it's simply untrue that they never reached out. I was among the most vocal folks with the UI because it was literally giving me headaches with the initial color scheme.

In my own personal observation and experience they do listen and take measures to address things. Perhaps they don't act as quickly as many would like or feel they should. But steps are actually implemented based on user outcry and feedback.
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Joe Morgan

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Well maybe your feedback sucked.Because the interface is still poor and of low contrast.
Take a look above your comment, you seem to be the only one here who is happy with things the way they are.
(Edited)
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Tutoren Methodenlehre

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Be it as it may, fact of the matter is that the new UI in v9 is way more abysmal from an accessibility standpoint than the UI in v8. It might sport a more "modern" or "fancy" look but in general v9 has traded visual accessiblity for aesthetics.

As for the reach-out. While it may take highly skilled experts to design a "perfect" color scheme, it is not that hard for the average designer to come up with something that caters to people or situations where visibility is impaired. There should not be that much reach-out necessary. Other developers with way less (wo)manpower manage this, too.

I mean, all I ask for is to provice an option to change the color scheme for something with a bit more color and luminance contrast.
(Edited)
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Joe Morgan

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Rick would rather cheer lead than agree with anything I say.He hates the fact that I don't berate people that berate TechSmith.
He actually posted this the other day, as if I want TechSmith to fail as a company or something to that effect.

Rick Stone

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Joe, why are you here?

Honestly. It's a very serious question.

You seem to regularly find fault with the approaches TechSmith takes with things such as adding a watermark to their evaluation version of Camtasia and you obviously dislike the way they want to operate with their forums.

You also seem to seriously dislike it and have real issues when anyone expresses anything remotely resembling being in favor of or agreeing with anything pro TechSmith and you seem to relish always being on the side of TechSmith bashing folks.

So I'm genuinely curious as to what benefit you feel you are receiving from participating here? Perhaps you are in need of medication to increase your blood pressure and you see a cost savings in that participation helps boost it? ;)

I suppose you aren't seeing the irony in posting the same response to Fred ten different times, then making the suggestion that perhaps he could come up with an idea instead of nonsense.

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Joe Morgan

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Yet, Rick posted this a year ago.
https://feedback.techsmith.com/techsmith/topics/forum-etiquette

Maybe you have blood pressure problems Rick. Or you don't believe in Forum Etiquette with regards to YOU!

I didn't mean to suggest you berated TechSmith Tutoren Methodenlehre. I did not think that at all.
Other posters have berated TechSmith more than they should  and Rick likes to give it back with both barrels a-blazing .

Here's what he said about forum etiquette. My view is that we are all here to help one another as best we can and there should be zero tolerance for personal attacks in that process.


ROTFL Rick,ROTFL.


Regards,Joe
(Edited)
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ExpertNovice

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Well, ignoring the bickering, if it isn't improved I won't be able to use my purchase of C9.  I will continue to use CS8 until it no longer works and will simply not upgrade to later versions.  Once it fails to work properly on Windows 10 I will find other software.

I think Techsmith will fix the issue.  It is not a difficult fix.

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Joe Morgan

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Like I said, I want TechSmith to succeed as a company and be around to produce Camtasia 20.
However, more than 3 years have elapsed since they adopted the Grey on Black interface. 4 in May.
Maybe if we complain loud enough they will actually come up with an interface that works for more people?

Regards,Joe
(Edited)
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ExpertNovice

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Abdul, It may be nice for you, but what about the usability for your grandparents, or your neighbor with cataracts?
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Joe Morgan

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He's posting SPAM, he couldn't care less about Camtasia or it's functionality.

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Tilla the Hun

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It's too dark. And track height is too tall. So you spend eons hunting for the gray on black scrollbars so you can see how your tracks relate to each other. How about a simple display setting...one for hipsters and one for those who need to see?
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ExpertNovice

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Tilla, go vote for the idea to change at https://feedback.techsmith.com/techsmith/topics/increase-visibility-in-c9-gui

Unfortunately, this thread no longer counts as a request.

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ChrisM

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Adobe may be changing, but there are plenty of huge software companies that are actually swinging the opposite way. Autodesk for one. They did away with dark menus and dark default backgrounds because they found that most people that use it, use it in a bright environment. Dassault is another example. Their design and engineering software on every level has switched to a lighter theme. Heck, even look at Microsoft. Remember back in the day that dark blue menu bar and dark gray menus? (yes I am dating myself) They realized that the majority of users are using their Office products, well, in an office.

If you work in a dark environment, a dark screen is definitely a little less jarring on the eyes. But me personally, I am not sitting in a dark room gaming. I am in a nice bright office looking a dark screen that reminds of the emo kids in high school. PLEASE GIVE US THE OPTION TO CHANGE THE COLOR SCHEME!!!

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