Changing the background colors – a short walk-through to the brighter (or darker) side

One of the most criticized features of the new interface is the darkness. Not optimized for daylight (default gui + glossy screen + sun = trouble). However, making the gui brighter (or even darker, if you live by night) is not difficult. Here is a step-by-step guide to modifying the main elements of the background.

To begin with, follow the general instructions on the Modification page: download Xcode, navigate to the Resources folder, make a back-up copy, open “MAResourcesMapping.plist”.

Arrange (main) window

Navigate to AssetSets > Colors > Arrange > Background.

Try GrayColor:{83,100} to make the arrange window lighter – or any other values you prefer.

(See also the extra tip at the bottom of this post.)

Track header

You have to change four items: GradientTop, GradientBottom, and their “Selected” counterparts. An example for values:

Mixer window

Colors > Mixer > Channel Strip BG. You need to adjust two “gradient” colours, top and bottom.

For when the channel is selected, you need to adjust “ChannelStrip_SelectedBG”.




After trying out these values (between 1= black, 255 = white; the second value for opacity) you surely get the point.

Piano roll

Colors > PianoRoll. The most important ones here are “BackgroundBlackKey” and “BackgroundWhiteKey”.  In the example these eight have been adjusted:
Kuvankaappaus 2013-8-18 kello 4.33.25

That is pretty much all you need to make Logic look and feel lighter. Yet obviously you can still go on…. For some contrast, more light or differing colors, try the following…

Library background

Simple: Colors > Library > LibraryBrowserBG.

The top panel


Kuvankaappaus 2013-8-18 kello 13.32.01

For the top panel, you have to modify some image files (again, see the Modification page for starters). If you want it to look as unified as this one, paint all those “MAkit…” image files that have “Tile” (marked with green) in their name so that they have the same color.

As the uppermost tile is colored sligthly differently, some of you may find it easier to download these already having the same color (sorry non-Retina versions only). Then you should paint all of them in any color you want and drag them into the Resources folder.


After making the Arrange background lighter, you may have problems in seeing the grid lines clearly. If so, navigate to Colors > Ruler and try changing the values of the following items into these:

Kuvankaappaus 2013-8-18 kello 2.47.03

TO SUM UP, if you tried following the example values given above, your new gui should look something like this (except for some further details – knobs, inserts, fonts etc. – that have not been mentioned here):

Kuvankaappaus 2013-8-18 kello 2.54.55

Kuvankaappaus 2013-8-18 kello 3.01.45

Kuvankaappaus 2013-8-18 kello 4.32.06

7 thoughts on “Changing the background colors – a short walk-through to the brighter (or darker) side

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