Welcome to Pro Tools Expert a huge community for users of Avid Pro Tools for both music and post production. With over 3 million visits a year, we’ve grown to be the place to come for training, resources, tips tricks and news. We offer advice for users of all versions of Pro Tools both current and legacy formats. We’re independent and are not affiliated with Avid or their associated companies.
Russ, Mike, Neil & James bring you another packed show of talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.
- Win a Elysia 500 series X-Filter 500 module on Facebook
- New prize draw - Win A Copy Of BFD3 From FXpansion
- Blue Cat Audio PatchWork £32 - 33% Discount
- TAL-Bassline-101 Monophonic Bass Synthesizer £27 - 25% Discount
- G-Force Oddity Analog Synthesizer £55 - 33% Discount
- EdiPrompt From Sound In Sync For Your ADR Sessions £345 - 20% Discount
- ADL Penteo 4 Pro Surround Upmixing Plug-in £399 - 33% Discount
- 10 Plug-ins & Tools I Reach For In Post Production Work
- Upgrade Your Most Used Studio Equipment - Your Ears
- When Dialog Editing Do You Use Playlists Or Not
- Stop Annoying Mac Notifications In Mountain Lion And Mavericks
- Loudness - The Problems With R128 - An Alternative View
- Fixing Audio In Pro Tools - The Case For And Against
- A User’s Experience Of The Problems With The Avid Engine
- How To Perform A “Clean” Uninstall Of Pro Tools 11 On Windows 7 And 8
- Slate Announce Public Beta Of VTM AAX
- Show And Tell Review Of UAD Dangerous Bax Eq
- José Luis Carrasco Thank you and how can I register your site in Spanish?
- J Daniel Christiansen - My browser says you site is infected, what is happening?
- John Mackniskas - Thanks for a great service and featuring my Ikea Bookshelves. We have awarded John the Sonnox Community Award for his brilliant idea for converting Ikea Bookshelves into acoustic treatment. Congratulations John.
- Paul Maunder - Can you do a video on how and why to use undimmed stems in post workflows in Pro Tools.
- Alan Hardiman - He has done some experiments on power demand for Pro Tools to help choose an appropriate UPS.
- Larry Burger - Has let us know that the v1.3 beta of Focusrite’s Rednet software is working well.
- D F Tweedie - Podcast Archive is in the wrong order, it should be in reverse date order.
- Richard Weatherley - How can get some of your Structure libraries to work in Structure 2?
- Problems splitting tracks into frequency bands.
- Problems with Pro Tools 7 LE on Mac OS 10.8.5
- Problems with static and clicks with an Mbox3 with an iMac and Mountain Lion.
- How can render out multiple instances of Xpand in Pro Tools.
In putting together the article on how to do a clean install for Macs, following Neil’s article for Windows 7 & 8 users. I was reminded that there was a new Pro Tools Prefs helper application. Peter Gates from Free Range Audio here in the UK has taken up the baton left by Jean Charles Deshaies and produced PT Prefs. The latest version now includes the feature we had in Jean Charles’ version which enables you to back up and restore preferred settings.
Pro Tools Prefs Helper v1.2 New Features
- Update V1.2 can now backup and restore. It creates a mirror folder structure in PT Prefs folder in Documents. This makes it easy for users to zip this folder structure to keep multiple backups.
- Separated Version 11 onwards prefs/AAE from pre Version 11. Handy for co-installs.
- Confirmation for trashing/restoring items
- Added another file to AAE prefs trash/backup/restore
- Added the com.avid.plist file
- Added nice little icon!
You can see that this covers all the different location for both Pro Tools 10 & 11 for Preferences related files and includes the Apple AudioMIDIsetup and MIDI files.
But unlike Trasher 11 for Windows users, Pro Tools Prefs doesn’t include files and folders like the Plug-ins and Plug-ins Settings folders that I referred to in my Clean Install For Mac article so you will still need to do those manually.
Any problems/queries/suggestions, do let us know here or on the special thread on the DUC.
Our friends at Audient have announced the new Audient ASP880 a 8 channel microphone pre and ADC. As an Avid Omni user it’s quiet an exciting proposition offering me 8 balanced inputs, all with inserts and lots more beside. If there’s anything that the Avid Omni lacks it is a sensible amount of inputs and inserts - the ASP offers;
Audient ASP880 Features
- 8 Audient Console Mic Pres
- All new, Burr Brown AD converter technology
- Variable Input Impedance
- Variable High Pass Filters
- 8 Insert points between the mic pre amps and AD converters
- 2 Channels of Class-A Discrete JFET D.I instrument inputs
- Digital Outputs - ADAT, AES & S/PDIF
- Price £899 RRP, street price may be less.
Audient ASP880 Review
We plan to have a Pro Tools Expert review shortly and let you know what we think of this exciting new product from Audient.
Audient ASP880 Information
For more information on the new Audient ASP880 visit the Audient web site.
You can arrange to make an appointment to view the full features of the S6 with HHB’s knowledgeable Avid specialists in a 5.1 equipped facility. The 24-fader M40 offers a unique advantage by showcasing the full range of modules available in a large format console. Pro Tools, Nuendo and Logic are installed and available for S6 demonstrations.
HHB Group Sales Director Steve Angel told us….
“HHB is a leading reseller of Avid consoles and the most experienced Pro Tools partner in Europe, as highlighted by our recent award. Our Pro Tools specialists are highly-trained S6 experts with the knowledge to provide in-depth demonstrations of the full capabilities of this revolutionary new mixing system.”
HHB’s dedicated team of Pro Tools specialists are revered by the industry as a trusted source of support for the full range of Avid audio systems and recipients of its EMEA Pro Audio Partner of the Year 2013 Award. This status makes HHB the most qualified partner to host the UK’s first 24-fader S6 M40.
Neil provided a very comprehensive feature recently for How To Perform A “Clean” Uninstall Of Pro Tools 11 On Windows 7 And 8 and in the comments where were questions of how to do this for a Mac, so here are some guidelines.
You Need To Archive Files Manually
There is no Trasher 10 option to undertake the archive process in the Mac world so you need to do this manually. I have covered how to do this is detail in my Pro Tools Toolkit For Mac series in Groove 3. One of the videos covers this in detail.
However the file locations vary depending whether you have Pro Tools 10 or 11. My video covers Pro Tools 10 but some of the files and folders are in different locations for Pro Tools 11.
Things start heating up in the next video installment of our NAMM Recording Industry Expert Panel.
The panelists have an in-depth discussion on the importance of good source material. Do you commit at the start and get your eq and compression down, or get it down clean and fix in the mix?
Thanks to our friends at RSPE Audio Solutions and Triad Orbit who sponsored the event.
Some people consider tape ADT to be some of the finest there is, so when Waves and Abbey Road join forces to offer a version as a plug-in then there’s every chance we are in for a treat.
Waves/Abbey Road Reel ADT Background
Waves claims that Waves/Abbey Road Reel ADT is the first plug-in to successfully emulate Abbey Road Studios’ pioneering process of Artificial Double Tracking. The effect that would become an integral part of Abbey Road’s signature sound was initially created at the famed studios in the 1960s to meet the needs of some very special clients: The Beatles.
It features the combination of tapes and valves from a vintage Abbey Road machine, even better it offers other tape based modulation effects such as phasing and flanging, as well as tape saturation.
Features of Waves/Abbey Road Reel ADT
- Developed in association with Abbey Road Studios
- Genuine tape-sounding
- ADT plugin
- For the first time ever, a full exact recall automation of the ADT effect
- Different tape sounds for source and ADT signals
- Exclusive 2-voice component
- Separate drive control for each path
- Manual and automatic control
- MIDI-assignable manual control for the most authentic user experience possible
One of the questions we asked our panel at NAMM 2014 was how optimistic they were about the future of the industry, that video will be coming soon.
There are both opportunties and threats that have been opened up by new technology that have made making music far more open. At the same time the same technology has created challenges such as online piracy, and even online music streaming services offer a small return for the average music maker.
In a couple of weeks Avid will be unveiling their version of the future with Avid Everywhere, it seems every man and his dog has the a version of the future of how we will make and share our music.
Some commentators paint a dystopian view of the future and others remain optimistic. Is everything broken or are there some real signs of hope for the future of music making - or is it just the same as it has always been?
So let us know how you feel, take our poll and most of all leave your comments.
Julian Rodgers gave us a great article on Session Navigation as part of our Pro Tools Fundamentals series. In response community member Justin Newton has been in touch to share some of his navigation tips in Pro Tools.
In the past few years I’ve gotten into much more post editing work and as I play through dialog listening for edits, I find the fastest way to scroll along, then zoom in to edit, zoom back out and scroll along is with the scroll modifiers.
Shift + [scroll wheel or trackpad] = horizontal scroll in the timeline.
Option/Alt + [scroll wheel or trackpad] = zoom scroll
Of course, scrolling with no modifier scrolls through tracks in the edit window, so with all this I’m navigating through timeline and zoom with one hand on the scroll wheel (or trackpad) and the other in the spot it always is at the keyboard! This is the way to go for fast timeline scrolling and zooming that’s doesn’t get you lost.
And while I’m on modifier keys, I’ll give you a two for one. This one, the interns never seem to know, even the one’s who’ve already finished the Pro Tools course (and consequently, think they know everything)
Hold Control [Windows key for windows machines] when assigning a track’s output to assign multiple outputs.
I use this all the time for things like parallel processing, or recording stems or mixdowns to tracks within the session. (I don’t like to use the bounce feature since if something goes wrong I have to start all over, especially in long post sessions)
This also works at the same time as option/alt to do the action to all tracks, and shift+ option/alt to do the action to selected tracks.
Mike says - With regard to scrolling, I cannot do without a mouse that has horizontal scrolling built in like the Apple mouse or I am now using a Logitech M510 cordless mouse which has horizontal scrolling as an option by pushing the scroll wheel left or right. I agree that the mutliple outputs one is great.
Russ takes a look at new UAD Dangerous Bax Eq, aimed at those who want to use precise EQ to add that something extra special either in mix, mastering or even on individual tracks.
This video looks at the extra Mid/Side option which is offered with the plug-in and is used on a final mix to add punch, definition and space.
Slate Digital have announced that VIRTUAL TAPE MACHINES AAX Public Beta is now in VTM customers’ user accounts. They have also informed us that owners should look for the email that was just sent to you for detailed information.
Slate VTM Public Beta
This update for Pro Tools users has been long awaited and although this is a public beta of the highly popular VTM it will give users welcome relief.
With models of both a 2 inch 16 track from NRG Recording, and a ½ inch 2 track machine from Howie Weinberg Mastering, the VTM will give your mixes analogue colouration found using tape t
Slate VTM Video Review
If you are new to this plug-in then check our video review some months ago here
You have heard me bang on about backup strategies, well I am not alone. Community member Neils Stummeyer from Petershagen in Germany has taken the trouble to outline his backup strategy.
I have just read the last post about backups and want to share with you my backup system that has worked without a problem for me very well for the last half year. I work daily in my studio on a Mac Pro with Lion and Mountain Lion.
Backups in 3 places.
- The first is the Mac OS Time Machine on a second hard drive inside my Mac Pro set with a manual start because of some Pro Tools problems with the auto backup of Time Machine.
- The second one is online via Gobbler… you all know that, Gobbler is awesome.
- The third one is my favourite because it works automatically and it is saved to other room outside my studio. I bought an NAS Synology 213+ with 2x 3TB Hard Drives (RAID 1). With the application SYNK I can back up all drives and/or folders that I like via the network / ethernet cable.
For me it is the Pro Tools plug-ins folders, my whole audio drive and my samples folder. You can select that the Synk app stops working/syncing while Pro Tools is running. If you close one session the back up starts automatically.
What I really like is the option to mirror your chosen folders. If I delete a file or folder, for example - get rid of some old unused audio files inside of Pro Tools, it also clears that data on my back up drives. With the right setting on my NAS I can also access any session i need from any location that has internet access.
I believe that Synk works well with other NAS solutions and usb/firewire/thunderbolt drives. Also it works from Snow Leopard up to Mavericks.
Sure, you have to make an investment (for me it was about 650 Euro for the NAS with drives and 45 Euro for the Snyk (pro) app but for a back up system, where every time in your hand and over your own network is worth every cent. I also use this NAS also as a private cloud and up- and download place for my clients.
Mike says - Your system is very similar to mine, I use Gobbler as my private cloud to send content to clients and to share projects. It too gives me access to my sessions stored in the cloud, but your system is not as expensive in cloud storage fees. However if your building was damaged or burnt down you would loose both your studio drives and your NAS.
For more on backups, take a look at my article on backup options and remember if you buy a G-Tech drive you get 50Gb of space on Gobbler free for one year.
Did you enjoy our NAMM Expert Panel podcast? Here is the video of the next part.
The panelists give a little career advice for the next generation of audio professionals. They answer the question…
“I want to get into the Recording Industry. What advice would you give to people trying to get into the industry. Should I go to college or should I get a job in a studio?”
Thanks to our friends at RSPE Audio Solutions and Triad Orbit who sponsored the event.
Focusrite Audio Engineering Ltd. will be showcasing RedNet, their expanding range of Dante-powered audio-over IP interfaces, including the new D16 AES interface and a suite of additional RedNet Control features, at Booth C10, Hall 8.0, Prolight + Sound, Frankfurt MusikMesse, 12-15 March 2014.
The New RedNet D16 AES
On show for the first time at MusikMesse will be the RedNet D16 AES is a 1U 19in rack-mount interface featuring 16 channels of AES/EBU connectivity to and from a Dante audio network, with network redundancy for maximum network reliability and you will also be able to see the rest of the RedNet range too.
New version of the RedNet Control Software
The latest release of RedNet Control Beta v1.3b3, the software package to configure and remote-control a RedNet system, provides a number of enhancements, including extensive MIDI control capabilities, Thunderbolt compatibility for the PCIe Card, and improved metering for the RedNet 4.
- MIDI Control – RedNet Control is now capable of sending and receiving MIDI, allowing control of the RedNet 4 mic preamp from many hardware or software controllers including Pro Tools. Two profiles exist in the software. Firstly a dedicated SysEx protocol allowing control from dozens of digital mixing consoles or iPad apps such as MIDI Designer. Secondly an implementation of the Avid PRE CC protocol allows control from any programmable CC capable MIDI controller or directly from the Pro Tools mixer and thus many Pro Tools control surfaces including Command 8, C|24, ICON, the new S6 and more.
- Thunderbolt Compatibility – The new RedNet Control release provides compatibility between the RedNet PCIe Card and Thunderbolt PCIe chassis systems under Mac OS X.
- Improved Metering for RedNet 4 – RedNet 4 now includes improved metering to IEC 268-18:1995 specifications, offering better readability and longer decay time.
If you are at MusikMesse this year then do check them out at Booth C10, Hall 8.0 where you will be able to see a fully integrated RedNet-Dante-AES-MADI-Pro Tools|HD system
What Is A Clean Pro Tools Install On A Windows 7 And 8 Machine?
When a new update to Pro Tools 11 comes along it is often said that a “clean” installation is the best way to go about the update, But what does this actually mean?
Well, when you run the packaged uninstaller for Pro Tools regardless of whether you chose the option to uninstall everything or not some files are actually left behind, not removed or deleted as part of the uninstall process and are not even overwritten by the update installer.
If these leftover files are not cleaned up manually and left to remain after the new update they can cause issues and instabilities for Pro Tools so are best dealt with before any new updated installation is carried out.
You can of course just run a new installer over the top of a current installation but all of these files will be present and can cause quite a mess, but this isnt always the case and you may get away without any trouble at all but best practices recommended by Avid and Myself are to keep things tidy so heres how….
The gang over at uber fantastic sound creation company e-instrument are giving away a copy of Session Horns every week until April 3rd 2014.
The Session Horns Prize Draw
More About Session Horns
Session Horns is the versatile and playable horn section that will instantly perk up your productions. The trombone, tenor sax and two trumpets have been sampled to perfection and deliver a rich, authentic sound, playable by anyone.
Session Horns features a unique Smart Voice Split function for creating authentic horn arrangements on the fly. Or get inspired with theAnimator – a harmonically flexible riff generator. Inject any production with a dynamite sound that will blow you away.
Mac or PC, requires Kontakt Player or Kontakt
Unlike a lot of post production users, Mike Aiton has made the jump to Pro Tools 11 and as we discussed on the Avid stand at BVE recently the Avid Video Engine in Pro Tools 11 is far from being a bed of roses. Mike has been working on a documentary this week and we asked him to log his experiences together with what works and what doesn’t work. Over to you Mike…
My Video Setup
I am using Blackmagic Design DeckLink Studio hardware card with the video reference set to 25 frames per second PAL from my Nanosyncs and my Sync HD unit. I am using the Blackmagic Design v10 driver, using the onboard SD hardware down mix from the Blackmagic card of the HD pictures to feed my SD screens.
Today I started sound editing in Pro Tools 11.
Audio - I imported the OMF from the video edit and re-arranged everything to correct tracks etc for splits.
Video - I tried using Pro Res Proxy file (14GB for 47 min) which works out at about the same size-ish of file as DV PAL.
I had three crashes with the Wait Play bug.
I had the orange video media once in the timeline with “video with no known codec” bug which I was able to clear with a reboot.
Have you ever sat in a session with a Pro Tools engineer going through a piece of audio meticulously to make changes? This may be to the timing, tuning, de-breathing, or trying to change the audio becuase the Eq was recorded wrong and they now need to go through and notch their way through the performance.
Sometimes it is necessary, so here is the case for and against.
Russ takes a look at the Blue Cat Patchworks plug-in. It offers the chance to host multiple VSTs, parallel processing, channel strip saving and multi synth hosting in two different formats. Find out how it works and what he thinks.
Find out from Avid more of what went into the sound production for Gravity that meant it cleaned up both sound related Oscars. Director Alfonso Cuarón wanted to leverage sound and picture to create an immersive experience for moviegoers. In this exclusive interview, the Gravity audio post team explain how using Avid workflows they were able to transport the audience to a heightened reality.