Auto-coloring tracks in Reaper

Coloring tracks in the DAW is a good idea so you can visually tell what’s what. And (in Reaper at least) it can be done automatically, as soon as you name the track.


First you need the SWS extensions for Reaper. Download and install and a new top-level menu called Extensions will show up.

Click Auto Color/Icon/Layout

Tweak to your heart’s content.

Finally, make sure the options Enable Auto Track Coloring and Enable Auto Track Icon are ON.



Here’s a quick video of how auto-coloring works in action.

Color-coding tracks in the DAW

When recording and mixing using a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) software, e.g. ProTools, Apple Logic, Reaper, it helps if you color the individual tracks with different colors so you can tell them apart.

Compare before….

… with after:

It’s also a good idea to use the same colors consistently, so you always know where you are even when moving between sessions (songs).

Of course you can pick any colors you like, but here’s a set to get you off the ground:

  • Drums: magenta (aka pink). Also kick and snare always first
  • Percussion: black
  • Bass: blue
  • Vocals: green
  • Background vocals: yellow
  • Guitar: red
  • Solo: orange
  • Extras, synth, etc: cyan (aka light blue)

Again, pick any colors that speak to you, the important thing is to use them consistently.

Take care now, bye-bye then.