Some UI elements too small to use touch

I am using a Dell ST2220T touch monitor with Win7. While I know Cubase wasn’t designed for touch, most things can be used with touch, except for:

  • the arrows that expand the mixer panels

  • the ‘contact’ points in the Control Room Overview

  • probably plenty of others.

Most touch devices need a minimum of a few mm (7mm for the Dell) to register the ‘touch’, but the elements above are only 2-3mm. There is no reason why the elements are so small, but it would make the UI a lot more touch usable if they were a little larger.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a touch kit for one of my 2560x1600 30", so I have to try and utilise as much of the touch monitor’s 1920x1080 21.5" space as possible.

Use a Workspace, I put the:

  • ‘Show Panel’ in the upper right

  • transport bar, fully expanded (except for keyboard) just above the taskbar

  • mixers over each other (1 = channels, 2 = inputs, 3 = groups, FX & outputs) just above the transport bar (to allow expanding them upward)

  • Control Room mixer upper left, Overview to right of it

  • channel window, fully expanded, across the top.

Cubase is on my central monitor, and the other windows in the monitor above.

I just use touch the ‘Show Panel’ buttons to control what is displayed.


thank you for your post. Interesting to read your experiences.



+1 on this.

Touch is the future. I’ve been thinking of buying a secondary touch monitor to control certain plugins and the mixer in cubase.



The buttons in the Mixer do not respond to touch, whereas standard Windows buttons in dialogs and message boxes work OK. Sliders respond to touch movements. Windows acknowledges that the scrren has been touched (outwards ripple), and moves the cursor over the button.

I have the same thing happening in MYOB, where the button in their home-grown panels do not respond to touch, but dialog and boxes work OK.

I suspect that the buttons that don’t respond to touch are from component libraries that may not use standard Windows API calls for buttons, or use them in a non-standard way, thereby bypassing the Windows translation of touch actions into mouse clicks for those ‘buttons’.

At any rate, touch is moving in, and application testing needs to have regression suites that cover testing touch equivalents of mouse actions.


I have a suggestion for what Workspaces and ‘Show Panel’ can do.

Now, while there are drivers that may be supplied with some touch devices that allow multiple touch devices by providing the facility to map to which monitor screen(s) each touch device corresponds, standard Win 7 only allows the primary monitor to be a touch device.

Almost all of Cubase could respond to standard touch as a standin for a mouse (notwithstanding the non-touch Mixer buttons), but many people use multiple monitors, so that rather limits how much can be touch controlled.

I propose that ‘Show Panel’ be changed to allow Cubase Windows to be able to be hidden, shown in their ‘normal’ place, or displayed in the touch monitor. Preferences could specify the default position for touch to be one of the corners or the centre.

The Workspace facility would need to be changed to remember both the ‘normal’ and ‘touch’ positions. The ‘normal’ position would allow viewing and standard mouse actions, of course.

If there were no touch device, the ‘Show Panel’ could just be as it is now.

The workflow would then be to select a window to show using its ‘Touch’ (say) button in ‘Show Panel’, which would display the window in the default position or where Workspace remembers. Pushing the button again would return the window to its former state, either its normal position or hidden. The windows ‘X’ button could also do the same thing when the window is in the ‘touch’ position.

The current ‘Show Panel’ buttons could do as they currently do - toggle the display of the window, but perhaps now dependent upon where they were last put by the ‘Touch’ button.

No - please don’t change the Cubase GUI for touch screen use, I don’t think a user interface for Cubase is suitable for touch screens, the biggest problem is our fingers, not technology. If a touch screen touch resolution is 7mm, then a fader to get true 128 steps, it would have to be 900mm tall ! Or to keep a fader at 60mm tall, the resolution would need to be about half a millimeter .

There are so many parts of Cubase that could never work with a touch screen, so there is no point in ruining the GUI for the odd things that could be by making the graphics chunky.

I say NO to touch screens, they have no place in Cubase - perhaps there ought to be a vote on for or against here.

andyjh, do I detect some paranoia?

The 7mm is to register the touch, but it does not mean each step must be 7mm in height. You still have the same granularity of control once actuating the slider. After all, the knob on a physical slider is much bigger than 7mm so you can easily grab hold of it, but that doesn’t stop you making fine adjustments!

Most of what I have described as being too small to touch are surrounded by a lot of dead space. Hence, the particular small areas could easily be increased in size without detriment to the UI.

And the change I suggested to Show Panel and Workspaces would be transparent to those without touch monitors.

How about you offer examples of ‘so many parts of Cubase that could never work with a touch screen’? So we know you aren’t just being reactionary.

Touch is just one of many means of interacting with a program, along with keyboard and mouse. I tend to use which is optimal at the time, depending upon what I have been using predominantly immediately beforehand.

The ease of using a touch screen is that the program window just has to be displayed upon it. However, if the screen designer has made the active elements too small, and there is room to spare, then increasing their size will make it easier for mouse users to use them as well.