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High contrast mode in iTunes 10 Apps
If you are struggling with the new low-contrast icons in iTunes 10, here is a hint to change the appearance.

In the terminal enter:

defaults write com.apple.iTunes high-contrast-mode-enable -bool TRUE

This will give a high-contrast side bar and listing pane. To undo this repeat the command but change the TRUE to FALSE. I haven't managed to get the color icons back yet though.

The preference AppleAquaColorVariant is next in the list after high-contrast-mode-enable and also does something, unfortunately every value I've tried so far prevents iTunes from launching. If you want to experiment, you can remove it to fix iTunes with:

defaults delete com.apple.iTunes AppleAquaColorVariant

[crarko adds: I tried this, and what it does is go from black on white to white on black. That certainly is higher contrast but I don't know how appealing that will be. I may try it for a while. If anyone has success with the AppleAquaColorVariant setting please submit a hint about it. That would seem to be a more desirable change.]
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High contrast mode in iTunes 10 | 16 comments | Create New Account
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Old Icons
Authored by: mdwittenberg on Sep 07, '10 07:53:18AM

In the old 9.2.1 package there are all the old icon under "resources" (I think). Couldn't you just drop those into the 10 application package?



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Old Icons
Authored by: mdwittenberg on Sep 07, '10 08:39:12AM

Ahh nevermind. Even after a system restart that my suggestion had no effect.



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Yes, you can
Authored by: hamarkus on Sep 07, '10 08:42:27AM

Gives you the coloured icons back (but I have not restarted my computer since...).



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Yes, you can
Authored by: mdwittenberg on Sep 07, '10 08:48:40AM

Oh really? I wondered what I did wrong...
What directories did you access?



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: JaxMyers on Sep 07, '10 08:12:58AM

Looks pretty damn ugly, but yeah lots of contrast I guess. It also changes white to black in the Album List view, not just the sidebar.



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: renaultssoftware on Sep 07, '10 03:49:03PM

Works in iTunes 9 too. Ugly!

---
http://groups.google.com/group/applescripters/
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http://www.kompilesoft.info/



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: arcticmac on Sep 07, '10 08:51:03AM

AppleAquaColorVariant has existed since at least 10.2, and describes whether you system uses the Aqua or Graphite color scheme. The preference is normally system wide, and you can read the value for your system like this:

defaults read -g AppleAquaColorVariant

As you'll notice if you run that command, AppleAquaColorVariant takes on two values: 1 (aqua/blue) and 6 (graphite). As I remember, there is one other (either 0 or 7) value that used to give (in the 10.2 days) a "clear" appearance, although it was blatantly uncomplete, and quite buggy. I can't say whether this still exists in 10.6.



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: asmeurer on Sep 07, '10 08:57:46AM

Unless the old icons are actually in the iTunes package somewhere, it is unlikely that there exists a preference to get them back. So you might look for that first. I really hope that there is, though, or that Apple brings them back. Finding an icon is much easier when it has a distinct color.

As far as appeal, I know many people who much prefer white on black to black on white. It's much easier on the eyes, especially in low light (think about it, staring at a computer screen is basically like shining a flashlight in your eyes).



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: edwardfox on Sep 07, '10 09:11:08AM

Help! I've entered the first line of code given here & it turns iTunes black! How can I revert to the original appearance?



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: crarko on Sep 07, '10 09:23:11AM

Quit iTunes and re-enter the command but change the TRUE to FALSE.

I've edited the hint to reflect this.

Edited on Sep 07, '10 09:25:36AM by crarko



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: edwardfox on Sep 07, '10 10:17:39AM

many thanks! (I shouldn't be tinkering with code in the first place!)



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: chrisfriend on Sep 07, '10 10:06:05AM

Damien Erambert has made a slick and simple installer package to put color back into the sidebar. His creation can also restore the old iTunes icon and flip the "traffic light" window controls to horizontal. He calls it "iTunes 109". Enjoy!

http://erambert.me/Files/iTunes109.dmg

(This is the only way I can use iTunes 10. I find that my brain relies on the color to find anything in that sidebar; going greyscale slowed me down way too much.)

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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: DaijDjan on Sep 07, '10 02:50:21PM

cool, thanks for the installer link



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: boredzo on Sep 07, '10 10:51:23AM

Doesn't work so well in the Downloads window, which gets the black background but doesn't get the white text, so you end up with black (or dark gray for paused items) on black.

I was hoping it would turn the window chrome black or near-black, which would have looked cool. :-)

Edited on Sep 07, '10 10:51:44AM by boredzo



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: MartiNZ on Sep 07, '10 04:42:00PM

Very interesting that such a setting is in there. It makes the new 'show source icons' preference make more sense, as it actually looks good without them in high contrast mode.

It doesn't look good in the new hybrid view mode because the artwork column still stays white, but in the old favourite list view mode, it's not too bad, except that it makes disclosure triangles invisible in podcasts. It also doesn't extend to the store - now -that- would be interesting.



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High contrast mode in iTunes 10
Authored by: pietervw on Sep 17, '10 08:37:24AM

This is very ugly, a much, much better solution, at least for Mac OS X, is the following:

http://obamapacman.com/2010/09/how-to-add-color-icons-apple-itunes-10-gray-sidebar-mod/

This will bring back the colored icons from iTunes 9, also with more contrast but not black on white or white on black.

Please note: use at your own risk. It's not an advanced hack or anything, and on my MBP it worked flawlessly, but you never know. As with the 'defaults write' commands by the way..



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