New Komplete Kontrol version, mild improvement on UI/UX, but missing the mark again.
I was so excited when I launched Native Access about 20 minutes ago and saw that there was a new version. I immediately thought "If they brought GUI zoom to Kontakt 7, not even on version 7.0.0 but later on 7.4.0, and this was months ago, they have to have brought it to KK, which is something that users have been asking for since years ago.
But.....NO! Nice looking new GUI, very much in the style of Kontakt 7, many GUI elements in common, so it's great. It also suffers from the same problems as the K7 GUI, but not the end of the world.
I don't know why is it that NI has such a fierce reluctance to introduce GUI Zoom to their products. Kontakt 7 went from something I had to tolerate because it had so many great instruments, to something I enjoy using because even if they didn't change it drastically, they gave us the ability to make the GUI larger. Sure, some parts are still over ten years old, like the preferences, but for the past few months I haven't had to zoom in my whole OS GUI and then zoom out just to use Kontakt instruments.
And honestly I wouldn't even care to use Komplete Kontrol, but I spent almost $1,200 in a Komplete Kontrol MK2 S88 keyboard in part because of the integration with all the instruments in Komplete 14 CE that I had just bought. But it turns out the only way to get that integration, that extra experience that gives you more controls on the screens and knobs, and more importantly, shows you the ranges of the loaded instruments in the LEDs at the end of each key, is by using Komplete Kontrol.
And Komplete Kontrol was useless because it was tiny on my screen, and also all the text was blurry because it was obviously a very small GUI upscaled without much care for aliasing, so it was downright awful.
But I kept the keyboard, and I was so close to return it, but I love the keyboard, and I figured that the NI team eventually would release a new version with HiDPI and GUI zoom. The new version, however, barely addresses any of these problems. HiDPI? Yes, in some places. Some text is almost impossible to read. But fine, most text is fine... in its own GUI.
See, the great thing about having GUI zoom in K7 is that the whole GUI scales up. And every instrument created for Kontakt, whether it's native NI or third party, has to comply to the sizes required by the format. So the text inside the instrument's own GUI looks blurry, but if you have to read blurry text that is big enough, it's tolerable. If it's blurry text but at a small size, it's awful.
And this is what the new KK version fails at. They had plenty of time and plenty of users here and elsewhere asking when are we getting GUI zoom in KK, and still nothing. So it's still useless to me.
And the other great failure is the same stubbornness of the previous version of not allowing to even grab the lower right corner and resize like you can in 99% of programs. Hell, even K7 has a little thing that allows you to enlarge the GUI in the old GUI and as much as you want when you switch to the new GUI. Komplete Kontrol 3.0.0? Nope. Why???
And my last beef is something that it also shares with K7 in the new GUI. Having each preset listed individually in the new GUI is great, but they set a specific number of characters that they can't go over, just like an old OS and file names:
You can see all those presets from Cinebrass Sonore that are trumpets and that's all I know. Unless of course, I go into the old Kontakt GUI and see the actual long names. If it came with that column width, but you'd be able to adjust it and leave it as default, no problem. But if you move the divider line between the instrument folders and the presets, it gives you more preset columns, it doesn't widen the column. So another big fail, shared with K7, but in K7 I can switch to the old GUI very easily, get to the library and see what are all those instances of Cinebrass Sonore. Sure, Cinesamples shouldn't have put their library name in every single preset. But this happens on many presets that don't have their library name in them.
So at this point, can I ever hope for a program, doesn't matter at all if it's Kontakt or Komplete Kontrol, that will let me take advantage of this very expensive keyboard the way I should, or should I just resign myself to look at this boring thing forever?
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