Northeme V2 Tutorial Videos are available now! Click here to view all videos.
We’ve been working on V2’s exciting new features since the early days of this year. Finally it’s all done and time to enjoy it!
The reason this upgrade is called Northeme V2 is not only all premium themes upgraded to V2.0, but also we’re excited to incorporate top of the line premium plugins into our themes for the first time.
Slider Revolution and Visual Composer plugins are now included into all premium themes. Accordingly the theme capabilities were drastically improved and as of now it’s possible to build multi-purpose websites.
Are you a customer?
If the answer is yes, let’s put your mind at ease before going any further.
The new updates and plugin bundles can be accessed for FREE by all active memberships (Theme Club, single theme and legacy theme). Just make sure that you’ve checked the upgrade notes at the end of this article before upgrading.
So, let’s begin to check out new features :
Slider Revolution, #1 WordPress Premium Slider / Gallery Plugin. is now included into our themes! It allows to create beautiful sliders, galleries, carousels, full screen sliders and more with dozens of customization options and fancy transition effects.
Slider Revolution can be used almost anywhere on your website through shortcodes and it’s also listed in Hero Slider select boxes to use them with BG slider (Reframe Plus), Cover Page (Centreal Plus), Page Hero (Madrigal) and standard hero sliders.
Get more information about Slider Revolution :
Visual Composer (VC), a premium WordPress drag&drop content builder plugin, is included. It offers 40+ page elements to build fully custom pages.
Also we offer custom made page elements along with built-in Visual Composer elements :
- Posts Grid
- Team Members
- Gallery Grid
- Contact Form
- Social Sharing Buttons
… and more is coming!
You’ll find more information about how to use VC elements in the theme documentation.
Single Page Websites
We also make a cool addition to Visual Composer’s Row element. Four different row width options are available (if applicable for your theme) :
- Narrow (70% wide content wrapper)
- Full Width w/ Padding (Centreal Plus & Madrigal)
- Full Width (Centreal Plus & Madrigal)
Full Width w/ Padding and Full Width options are only available for Centreal Plus and Madrigal themes. These options make possible to build full width sections in the content. That being said, it’s possible to create a single page website with the entire content.
We’re still working on minor details improve this feature and single page / app demos will be available for both themes soon.
Get more information about Visual Composer :
Flexible New Templates
Most page templates become deprecated now. Instead new Visual Composer templates are provided to create flexible pages. Each template can be easily created through Visual Composer Templates feature :
See these templates on theme live demo.
One-click Demo Installer and New Control Panel
QuickStart Guide and Setup Wizard have been replaced with new Northeme Panel.
Before, Northeme Options panel had a unified interface with theme options, sliders, documentation and other features. Now it’s all separated and have their own page :
- Theme Options
- Theme Registration
- Install Plugins
- Install Theme Demos
- Theme Requirements
- Slider Panel
One-click demo installer offers quick and easy way to install a theme live demo that you can preview on northeme.com. You may find fewer demo options at this time yet soon there will be more live demos in different concepts (E.g. Photographer Demo, App Demo etc.).
Install Plugins section allows to install and update plugin bundles along with recommended plugins. Also Theme Requirements can be found at Northeme > Theme Requirements to check if your theme meets the theme requirements.
Re-designed Options Panel
Theme Options panel has been re-designed for functional design and more integrated interface with other sections of WP dashboard.
Note that options panel changes only limited with design and all options maintained (yet new ones added).
Slider / Gallery Manager
Slider / Gallery Manager has been moved to WP Admin Menu as a separate section. No more conflicts or performance issues due to high number of sliders or slides. You can create unlimited sliders with unlimited slides at Sliders section and use them through shortcodes (VC) or Hero Slider select box on a page / post.
Theme Documentation has been removed from Northeme Options panel and moved to northeme.com as online documentation. It’s now more extensive, easier to access, up-to-date and zero performance impact on your WordPress dashboard.
Grid Layout Thumbnails and Single Post Image Optimization
I don’t even know how many times we’ve received support e-mails regarding thumbnail size issues. Although it’s an issue strictly related to WordPress due to performance concerns, there hasn’t been any practical solutions except using Regenerate Thumbnails plugin to crop thumbnails in correct sizes. But even I cannot call that a practical solution since it requires an additional step to crop thumbnails.
Therefore built-in Regenerate Thumbnails function has been removed and auto-crop feature added to the themes. Whenever a missing or incorrect sized thumbnail detected, auto-crop script will fix it automatically. You can edit grid layout templates and change thumbnail sizes without worrying about re-generating thumbnails. Now, only thing you need to do is to upload images with same size or above the minimum requirements and the rest assured.
Auto-crop feature also brings an incredible improvement to the themes by creating only necessary number of thumbnails. Regenerate Thumbnails plugin (also WordPress) creates new thumbnails of every image in the media library even though they’re not in use. Auto-crop feature only creates thumbnails that are being used.
Even though this technique sounds perfect, it comes with a minor drawback which is to crop images on-fly. That being said, it may take a few seconds to crop all images before displaying a specific page on your website (if there are too many thumbnails on your page). This is a one-time action and only happens on first visit. In other words, don’t worry if it takes more time than usual to view a page for the first time.
Also one more sweet automation script added to resize large images on single posts. Sometimes you may overlook and upload extremely large images (such as 5mb RAW photos) and your visitors may struggle to view that image due to high loading times. As of now, all images will be automatically resized to maximum 1800px wide and accordingly file sizes will be reduced and optimized as well. But you can disable this feature from Theme Options if you’re sure that you can handle the image optimization by yourself.
Category Filter Improvement
Ajax navigation has been removed due to poor performance and other incompatibilities. Yet a better category navigation filter has been applied to category filter links.
If Post Limit for a post type (Northeme > Post Type) is set to Unlimited, clicking an item from category filter will show corresponding posts and hide the rest in grid layout. Which means, no more loading category pages unnecessarily and the posts from corresponding category will be displayed immediately.
Related Posts Improvements
Related posts are being displayed right below a single post (blog, portfolio etc.) according to your preferences. Display posts from same category and Random posts options were already being offered for Related Posts.
Beyond that two exciting improvement have been made under the hood :
- Related posts lists used to start from the first post on each post page. Therefore mostly the same posts were listed on single post page unless Random Posts or Posts from Same Category haven’t been activated. Now, related posts list starts from the next post of the current single post page. This update provides a variety to the post list and can be used a post navigation other than post navigation arrows.
- Second improvement is Unlimited option added to the Post Limit option. If Unlimited option is selected for Related Posts, all posts from a post type will be listed below each single post page. That being said, visitors don’t have to get back to posts listing page since they can access it right below each post.
Page Settings panel
Page Settings panel added to pages and posts. Page Settings panel offers variety of options to make changes on pages individually :
- Custom logo and custom logo URL
- Custom BG image
- Disable Footer Widgets
- Remove Title / Header
- Hero Slider settings
Post Settings panel
Post Settings tab will appear in Page Settings panel while you add / edit a post. It allows to disable certain elements like Title, Categories, Sharing buttons. Additionally, post layout can be changed for a specific post (if applicable for the theme)
Portfolio Add / Edit Post page has been improved and re-arranged :
- Composition Panel : Global Padding options added to adjust the gap between elements. You may also use No Padding.
- Composition Panel : Global Lightbox switch added to activate lightbox for all images.
- Composition Panel : Half with option replaced with Column option for elements. Now you can set an element as single column, half column, 1/3, 2/3 or 1/4 wide to create custom grids.
- Post Settings tab will appear in Page Settings panel. Hide Items allows to remove specific elements such Title, Categories, social sharing buttons etc. Also Layout Type option allows to override global settings of theme options panel and use single or two column layout for a specific post.
- External URL option moved to Page Settings Panel
- Single column blog listing page displays featured image for Standard blog format if it’s set.
- Sidebar option added to Blog page template at Pages. Sidebar can be set as display on listing page, single post page or both.
Ajax Navigation (Removed)
Ajax navigation has been removed due to performance and incompatibility issues with plugins. Instead loading bar, smooth navigation options added to Northeme > Website Layout. Also category navigation on post listing page is being done on-fly, without loading new scripts / pages if post limit set as Unlimited.
Deprecated Page Templates
Since Visual Composer presented, the following templates are no longer necessary and have been deprecated. If you already have pages built with those templates, they won’t get affected yet it’s highly recommended to re-build them with Visual Composer instead :
- Home Template
- About / Contact Template
- Gallery Template (Madrigal)
- Full Width Template
Current page templates :
- Default Page
- Cover Page (Centreal Plus)
- BG Slider (Reframe Plus)
- Post Type Page (Post type template will appear in the list whenever a new custom post type created at Northeme > Create New Post Type)
The reason Full Width template has been deprecated is, Default Page template is set to be displayed in full width (without a sidebar). Default Page can be used to build any content except blog and post type overview pages. Whenever Default Page template selected, Enable Sidebar option will appear whether you’d like to have a sidebar on that specific page. This update increases the compatibility with 3rd party plugins such as forum plugins etc.
Current users : If you’ve already been using Default Page template with sidebar, make sure that activating Enable Sidebar after updating to V2.
Full List of New Features
- Slider Revolution (Plugin Bundle)
- Visual Composer (Plugin Bundle)
- Single CPT post page : Display custom fields on a single row
- Single CPT post page : custom color schemer. Canvas Colors panel added
- Boxed layout mode
- Northeme > Layout Padding > Boxed Container top and bottom padding option
- BG slider has been removed from Northeme > Sliders > BG Sliders. Now BG sliders can be managed on through BG Slider panel on add / edit page if BG Slider template selected. Revolution Slider can be used instead of BG Slider.
- Northeme > Layout > Website Layout > Full Width Layout – Single Row menu option allows to display navigation menu, search icon on the same row.
- Northeme > Layout > Website Layout > Hide Tagline on Mobile option added.
- Footer alignment fix
- Cover page improvement : Revolution Slider can be used as BG instead of built-in image slides
- Sticky header option. Can be activated at Northeme > Website Layout > Sticky Menu
- Northeme > Layout > Website Layout > Standard Category Filter to list menus as a horizontal menu.
- New single portfolio / CPT layout : 2 columns. Northeme > Portfolio > Layout
Common / Framework Changes
- QuickStart guide simplified and setup wizard has been removed. Instead Product Registration, installation and activation of recommended and required plugins, live demo install section provided. Additionally Theme Requirements page added you to make sure that your hosting meets the theme requirements.
- Theme options panel design changed in order to incorporate theme options with WP Dashboard. Folded sections removed and all sections listed on the menu for better accessibility.
- Custom Post Types section removed. Instead each post type settings can be changed on Northeme > POST TYPE NAME (E.g. Portfolio). Create New Post Type menu added right below post types.
- Page Settings and Post Settings panels for each page and post
- Grid layout : Transparency effect added (can be changed per post type ; Northeme > POST TYPE – Portfolio, Blog etc. -)
- Grid post info below thumbnail with BG option added along with Overlay, Below Thumbnail options at Northeme > POST TYPE.
- Grid layout presets added : Small, Medium, Large, Portrait, Square, Masonry. These are default templates that comes with fresh theme installation and can be modified.
- Northeme > Website Layout > Responsive Layout Options added to hide related posts and footer widgets on mobile.
- Northeme > Website Layout > Footer Widgets : Disable option added.
- Northeme > POST TYPE > Disable Comments and Disable Sharing options provided to disable these items for specific post type.
- Category Filter font styling at Northeme > Font Styling
- Basic Advanced mode removed from theme options panel (all options are visible by default).
- Navigation Arrows BG Color option added to Northeme > Built-in Sliders in order to increase the visibility of built-in slider navigation arrows.
- Lightbox Vertical Fit option replaced with Image Fit option (except madrigal)
- Retina display image quality option moved to Northeme > Website Layout section.
- Social icons set to have specific width in order to maintain consistency.
- Add custom social icon image button removed due to alignment issues (Icons already added won’t be affected)
- Theme switch and get involved sections removed from theme options.
- Recommended / required plugin installation section added. It can be accessed at Appearance > Install Plugins.
- BG Size option added to Northeme > Skins & Colors menu to set BG image as cover.
- Northeme > Layout > Website Layout > Disable Ajax Add to Cart option added to disable ajax function for WooCommerce add to cart button
- For Legacy Theme users : data converting tool automated for seamless integration and doesn’t require any action.
- Northeme & theme credits removed from footer (yay!)
- Shortcode button removed from visual editor panel
- Woocommerce 2.5.5 fix
- Lots of improvements & fixes under the hood
Performance & Better usability (Back-end & Front-End) :
- Built-in Sliders feature has been removed from theme options panel and moved under Sliders menu on WP dashboard for better performance.
- Documentation removed from theme framework. It can be accessed over northeme.com via single click at theme options.
- Thumbnail re-generation has been automated. Grid layout templates created at Northeme > Grid Layout Templates will not cause creating unnecessary thumbnails. Thumbnails will be automatically created on-fly when a grid layout is being used.
- Masonry replaced with Isotope script for animated category filter.
- All single post images automatically get resized in order to serve optimized images.
- Lazy load plugin implemented for faster page loading
- Custom Post Types section removed and Add New Post Type section added instead. Each post type slug can be managed under corresponding post type’s menu at Northeme.
- Draggable popups for skins & layout spacing removed due to performance issues.
- Visual editors disabled for captions and turn into standard text due to performance issues.
- Regenerate Thumbnails function removed from theme framework.
- Several unnecessary scripts removed from back-end and all back-end optimized to boost performance.
Legacy Themes No More!
If you’ve been a legacy theme user (Workality Premium, Reframe, Centreal) and haven’t upgraded to their successor yet you won’t need to do it anymore! All legacy themes have been discontinued and upgraded to their successor (E.g. Workality Premium upgraded to Workality Plus) on your account. You can sign in to your northeme.com account and head to My Account page to download the new theme and upgrade immediately! It’s totally free of charge!
Please note that Slider Revolution and Visual Composer can only be used with new themes and are not compatible with legacy themes.
We’ve been offering 50% discount to legacy themes before and many customers have already upgraded. As a token of our appreciation, all customers who have upgraded to the new themes will find a nice gift on their My Account page. Go and check it out! (This promotion only covers single theme upgrades)
How to Upgrade?
V2 is available for all customers who have active theme license and it can be downloaded from My Account page (or installed via auto-update feature from your WP dashboard). Slider Revolution and Visual Composer bundles are also available at My Account page.
Upgrade should go smoothly and won’t affect your content. But before upgrading, we strongly recommend to backup your website just in case. You can use any WordPress backup plugin yet UpdraftPlus offers a quick and hassle-free backup solution :
After getting a backup and upgrading to V2, follow the steps below :
- Register your theme if you haven’t done it yet at Northeme > Registration. Product key and e-mail address can be found on My Account page at northeme.com
- Install plugin bundle and recommended plugins (optional). Plugins can be installed automatically at Northeme > Install Plugins. If you wish to do this manually, download plugins from My Account page and install from Plugins at your dashboard.
- Since Default Page turned into Full Width Page and full width page removed, you’re supposed to activate sidebars for your currently existed Default Pages (if applicable). Go to Pages, edit default page templates and activate Enable Sidebar at Page Attributes.
- Home, About / Contact, Gallery (Madrigal) page templates have been deprecated. Instead Visual Composer can be used to build these pages with drag&drop feature and highly flexible interface. Your pages built with deprecated templates won’t get affected but deprecated templates won’t show up in Page Attributes anymore.
Visit theme pages to see live demos and theme modification examples :
Even though providing a comprehensive list of features might be useful, no doubt that it’s not as effective as showcasing these features through live demos. App, Photographer, Videographer and many more live demos in different concepts will be available soon and offered with one-click demo installer!
Well, hope you like it folks! Please let us know what you think about these improvements at firstname.lastname@example.org and support forums.