Dark Mode Rich Text Background Color Options in DT3?

Is there any chance we can get color options for the background of rich text notes like we have for plain text notes in DEVONthink 3? I see their still is an option for this specific to full screen on rich text notes.

The majority of my notes are rich text and seeing the white background on the note preview screen with the rest of the application in dark mode is a bit jarring. Also, I usually use my notes in a pop out window in split screen mode so full screen is not my preferred method of use.

By the way, I love the update so far! The look is fantastic and a lot of the new functionalities are great too.


Thanks for the suggestion! Maybe we’ll add another option to upcoming versions. Another possibility is that the plain text background color could also be applied to rich text (question is how many people wouldn’t like that?).


It seems natural that rich text would use the same background as plain text, as it is the case on text editor and quick look. Also, I would kindly suggest/request that a dark background be made available to the epub view as well. :slightly_smiling_face:

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One of the most appreciate advantages with the dark mode is, that it is very relaxing for the eyes. So, in every case a strong contrast between black and white is more stressful for the eyes.

For me, this is the strongest argument to have a darker background for every view in DT3 :slightly_smiling_face:

I agree, looking at black then open a file straight white, it’s unsettling.

I would also welcome this. If I have to create a plain text note, I lose the advantage of headings, bold, italics, etc. to order my note. If I do all my writing in Full Screen, it’s somewhat disconcerting to see the same note in white, with (for me) light grey text in the ordinary viewing pane. I think it’s a small change that will accelerate DT3 into a strong note-writing app alongside its other considerable advantages for researchers, for example.

Welcome @empassionate

Actually legibility suffers in the dark mode color scheme. Using Apple’s Night Shift is actually better for your eyes and maintains legibility. Perceptual constancy creates the illusion the color is correct when Night Shift is in effect. (The brain is an amazing thing!)

Hi @BLUEFROG, I use the dark mode also in other editors like Typora or Scrivener. It’s far better for me, than with dark mode an white background in the editor window. My legibility seems to be affected very positive. A few minutes ago I imported a lot of Scrivener RTF exports into DT. I’m a happier customer if I have the opportunity to switch to a dark background…

Yes, please add Background and Text color options to Rich Text documents in Preferences, similar to what is already there for plain text.


+ 1 (at the moment I convert to markdown but e.g. for annotations it would be nice to have the option)

I upgraded to DevonThink 3 primarily to get Dark Mode. But now all the black on white rich documents that I have to document procedures are really loud and unpleasant to read against dark mode. Unfortunately, unlike the color picker DevonThink 2, the color picker in DevonThink 3 doesn’t have a ‘background [ ]’ checkbox so I can’t seem to select the whole document and change the background color, or the background of any text. I am still searching around to see if you’ve merely provided the feature in a different way.

To help people transition to dark mode, it would be nice to have some kind of import or conversion filter that would ‘invert’ the rich text colors or scan for existing colors and let users fill in a migration color table or something to quickly let them make their DevonThink 2 documents work better in DevonThink 3 with Dark Mode.

I’d love that feature but at least I’d like to know how to convert the doc background manually.

Welcome @eclectic

The request is noted, but Development would have to assess this.

However, you can change the background of a rich text document on a per-document basis by doing a Command-A or Edit > Select All while the text is active. The press Command-T to open the Font panel where you can change the background and font colors, like this…

Hi, so that’s where the FG/BG colors are hiding in v3. Great.

Some very strange behaviors. When I brought up the font panel pop up, selected all the rich text document and set the background color it only changed the margins (where I use the ruler sliders to indent paragraphs).

But now the document shows mark up instead of a ruler (I probably have it in some mode), but when I select the font background from that it sets the background of everything except the margins.

I’ve pasted in both screenshots.

Now I’m going to see if I can get them both to agree on a color as a workaround.

Said I’m a new user and only let me post one image so here’s the second:

Beta 4 or the final release will add support for dark mode to rich text rendering.

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Hi, thanks. Looking forward to that. There is a way to accomplish it in beta, but it is tedious.

First I’d like to add, if this is on someone’s agenda, that with a dark background the dark “I” cursor can’t be seen, so there should probably be some way to handle that.

The way I get the background to be a dark grey entails using the format bar, and the font panel because each changes a different part of the background color (one sets the margin background color (such as the whitespace that occurs when indenting sections using the ruler) and the other sets the text background. Together they can create the same background color.

Update: The new-user rules for this forum are really draconian and frustrating. I wanted to remove this post and post it as a reply to the previous person, but it told me I can only have three replies on this topic. I was going to delete this and hope it would decrement the total number of replies and ‘open up a slot’ for me to reply into, but figure it might be broken and not realized I’d deleted one so …

Just updated to DT3b4 and the RTF-file editor inside DevonThink has now its dark mode. But there is a visual conflict regarding text highlights:

RTF file in DT3b4 with new Dark Mode:

The default highlight color is yellow (in this newly created example notes above, but also in all my other notes I have edited so far). The problem is that in dark mode, the font color changes from black to white (which makes sense due to the dark background). But white a font color within yellow text highlights makes the the highlighted part unreadable :slightly_frowning_face:

Are there any solutions planned for this issue? E.g., automatically changing the font color in highlighted text to black or automatically changing the highlight color into orange or something else?

The next release will improve the Dark mode support.

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Cool! Thanks for the quick reply :blush::+1::+1::+1:

Well done, the DT3b5 update brings some improvement to the visibility of highlighted text in RTF files in Dark Mode! Unfortunately, the highlight color is now slightly too dim, so that the highlight can hardly be recognized (left image below). May be a slight increase of the background color could further improve the visibility (e.g., right image)?