For me, the biggest advantage that action bar mods have over the standard UI is that they give you the ability to put your bars anywhere on your screen and show as many or as few buttons as you want. Popular action bar addons include Dominos, Bartender and Macaroon.
The main action bar mod I use is Dominos. Dominos lets you customize the position, number, size, spacing and scale of your action bars. You can also choose to hide action bars or make them visible only when moused-over. In addition to the action bars, you can also modify things like your XP bar, cast bar, roll box, class bars (like druid forms or warrior stances), bags and menu bars.
When you enter configuration mode (by clicking the minimap icon or typing /dom), you’ll see something like this:
All the actions bars available to you will be displayed. To move an action bar, just left-click and drag it to where you want it. Bars can be hidden completely by middle-clicking them or pressing shift+right-click.
To adjust a specific action bar, right-click on it and the settings menu will come up. Play with size and columns to adjust how many buttons appear on the bar. Use spacing and padding to adjust the space between the buttons. Scale effects the size of the bars. I like mine smaller than normal, so I set it at 85%. Faded opactity is used when you want to make your bars fade out when they aren’t needed. Set the faded opacity to 0 if you want them to be completely faded out.
When I’m playing, only two action bars are visible.
I actually have six action bars on my screen, but four of them are hidden unless I mouse-over them. I use the faded opacity feature to hide the bars I feel aren’t important enough to be visible all the time, namely: menu, bags, class bar and an extra action bar with things like my mounts, mage water and resurrect spell.
A word of warning about action bar addons: It depends on which one you use, but action bar addons have been known to cause some Oh Shit! moments on fights like Teron Gorefiend or Blood Queen Lana’thel when not set up properly. In general, if you are going to be doing a fight with a mechanic that will replace one of your action bars, make sure that action bar 1 and your pet bar are not turned off. They can be empty, and therefore not visible, but don’t turn them off.
Button Range and OmniCC
Button range will turn your spell buttons red when your target is out of range. As you can see above, my target is out of range for heals. Omni CC adds a numerical countdown to items and abilities that are on cooldown to let you know when they’ll be ready to use again. Above you can see the cooldowns remaining on my Nature’s Swiftness, Barkskin, Innervate and Tranquility.
The last action bar mod I use is OPie. OPie creates radial menus in place of action bars. It is great for things you that you want to be able to access, but don’t want taking up room on your screen. The addon is very easy to configure. There are some out of the box ring configurations (tracking, trade skills, raid markers) that get populated with the abilities/items that fit in that category. In the Ring Bindings menu, just assign a key binding to the rings you want to use. You can also create custom rings if the default ones dont meet your needs.
On my druid I use OPie for my trade skills and buffs. On my hunter I use it more extensively for things like aspects, pet skills and traps.