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Logic Pro X – How It Works – The GUI

logic pro x how it works ibook edit

The following article is an excerpt from my book called “Logic Pro X – How It Works”, available as an interactive iBook on Apple’s iBookstore and as a printed book on Amazon. This excerpt is about Logic Pro X’s Graphical User Interface (GUI) and the Main Window.

One major aspect of learning an application is to understand its graphical user interface (GUI) for the simple reason of knowing how things are organized and where to find all the elements.

Main Window

Let’s start with the main window in Logic, the so called “Main Window”. Think of it as the traditional multi-track machine, the place where you record your music on individual tracks.

logic pro x how it works main window

Single Window Interface

The “Main Window” is Logic Pro’s single window interface. You can do almost everything in the “Main Window” without opening any other windows because most of the other windows can be “opened” as Window Panes. Think of this concept as “windows in a window”, part of the “Main Window”.

The name “Main Window” makes sense because it is where you do your work in Logic.

However:

  • The term “Main Window” is already used in the OSX user interface guidelines to describe the status of a window that receives any keyboard input from an Inspector window (I described that concept in the first chapter).
  • The Piano Roll window can therefore also be a Main Window from a strictly OSX guidelines point of view.
  • The Window Title calls the window “Tracks” ➊ and not “Main Window”.
  • After all, what was wrong with the previous name “Arrange Window”?

Window Panes

logic pro x how it works view menu

While the Window Menu in Logic Pro X contains the commands to open individual windows, the View Menu is the one that lets you show and hide the individual Window Panes of the Main Window. The Commands are nicely grouped together:

Left

There are actually two Panes on the left that can slide in or out: 
The Library ➊ and the Inspector ➋.

Bottom

The Pane that slides up from the bottom can display three different windows ➌, the Mixer, the Smart Control or the Editors. These three commands are toggling each other. Show one window will hide the other one.
The Editors Pane has three tabs that let you switch between three Editor windows: Piano Roll, Step Editor or Score. The pane automatically switches to the Drummer Editor when a Drummer Region is selected.

Right

The Pane that slides out from the right can also display different windows ➍. These are the List Editors, Note Pads, Apple Loops and Browsers. All of these windows, with the exception of the Apple Loops window, also have tabs to switch to different window views inside that Window Pane.

Top

On top of the Main Window are two window panes that you can slide down, the Control Bar ➎ and the Toolbar ➏.

Center

The Tracks Window is always visible and can’t be hidden. Sliding out any window pane will cover the Tracks Window to make space for it. If the Main Window is too small and the available space is limited, then opening one Window Pane could automatically close another one.

logic pro x how it works tracks window

The book “Logic Pro X – How It Works” (up to date with the current version of Logic Pro X) is available as an interactive iBook on Apple’s iBookstore, and as a printed book on Amazon.
Edgar Rothermich

Edgar Rothermich

Edgar Rothermich is a composer, producer, educator and author of the best-selling book series “Graphically Enhanced Manuals (GEM)” He is a graduate of the prestigious Tonmeister program at the University of Arts in Berlin where he also was teaching for five years. His musical work in a wide variety of styles includes numerous scores for films and TV shows plus compositions for ballet and sacred music. His recent re-recording of the Blade Runner soundtrack (done exclusively in Logic Pro!) achieved critical acclaim from critics and fans alike. Follow him on Twitter @EdgarRothermich
Edgar Rothermich

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