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Pro Tools tips, tricks, support and news for users of Pro Tools. Free Pro Tools video tutorials and free Pro Tools plug-ins. We support both the music and post production community.

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.

Pro Tools tips, tricks, support and news for users of Pro Tools. Free Pro Tools video tutorials and free Pro Tools plug-ins. We support both the music and post production community.

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. 

Pro Tools 12 Goes On Sale In The Avid Store

Avid have now started selling Pro Tools 12 on their web store and have taken Pro Tools 11 off the store so you can no longer buy Pro Tools 11 from the Avid Store.

Pro Tools 12 Subscriptions

You can buy Pro Tools 12 on monthly subscription and pay $29.99 per month or sign up for an annual subscription and pay $24.92 per month. You also get Standard Support Included as long as you pay the subscription fees.

Pro Tools 12 With Upgrade Plan

You can buy a new copy of Pro Tools 12 with a 12 month Upgrade plan for $899 and then pay $199 per year to keep the upgrade plan up to date. You also get 12 months standard support included with the Upgrade plan.

Pro Tools 12 Upgrade Plan

For owners of Pro Tools 9, 10 11, Pro Tools M-Powered 6-8 or MP9, Pro Tools Express bundled with Avid hardware (The InMusic versions are not eligible) you can upgrade to Pro Tools 12 for $199 per year and then pay $199 per year to stay up to date. You also get 12 months standard support included with the Upgrade plan.

Pro Tools 12HD Upgrade Plan

For owners of Pro Tools 9, 10 or 11HD software or Pro Tools 9 & 10 with Complete Production Toolkit, you can upgrade to Pro Tools 12HD for $599 and then pay $599 per year to stay up to date. You also get 12 months of ExpertPlus Support included in the HD Upgrade Plan.

Pro Tools 12 For Education Subscriptions

You can buy Pro Tools 12 on monthly subscription and pay $9.99 per month or sign up for an annual subscription and pay $8.25 per month. You also get Standard Support Included as long as you pay the subscription fees. You will have to prove you are a student or teacher to be eligible for this plan.

Pro Tools 12 For Education With Upgrade Plan

You can buy a new copy of Pro Tools 12 For Education with a 12 month Upgrade plan for $299 and then pay $99 per year to keep the upgrade plan up to date. You also get 12 months standard support included with the Upgrade plan. You will have to prove you are a student or teacher to be eligible for this plan.

Pro Tools 12 For Education Upgrade With Annual Upgrade Plan

For owners of Pro Tools 9, 10 11, Pro Tools M-Powered 6-8 or MP9, Pro Tools Express bundled with Avid hardware (The InMusic versions are not eligible) you can upgrade to Pro Tools 12 For Education for $99 per year and then pay $99 per year to stay up to date. You also get 12 months standard support included with the Upgrade plan. You will have to prove you are a student or teacher to be eligible for this plan.

Studio One Expert Goes Live Today

Studio One Expert is the latest addition to the Production Expert family of sites that also includes Pro Tools Expert as well as Logic Pro Expert, Albeton Live Expert and Reason Expert.

You can check out the Studio One Expert contest to win virtual instruments from AIR Music Tech and Sonivox, it’s as simple as getting as many of your friends as you can to enter the contest. The person who makes the most referrals wins the prize, worth $600!

They have already started the A to Z of Studio One beginning with A is for Audio Track as well as a Studio One Quick Tips series starting with a tip on Importing Key Commands For Other DAWs.

We wish Matthew Mann and his team all the best with Studio One Expert.

5 Reasons For Making Demos Before Producing A Song

Over the years I have seen a decline in artists creating demo recordings of their songs which they intend to record and produce with me.  Demo recordings can be anything from a simple vocal and guitar recording to a 4 to 8 track pre production mix.  Demo recordings provide all the parties that will be included in the production process with a blue print to which everybody can work to.  I want to share with you 5 reasons why making demos can help artists and producers work faster and more creatively when in the production process of a song.

Musicality

Demo recordings help confirm the final stages of the songwriting process.  The song’s structure, tempo, key, feel, groove, dynamics and mood should be captured in the demo process.

Choice Of Song

When selecting a song to produce it is sometimes good practise to have a few other songs to choose from.  Having a selection of demos from the artist helps you to know as a producer that you are about to invest time into the right song and that there’s not a better song from the artist… a hidden gem that may work better in production.  

Distance And Evaluation

Creating a demo gives the songwriter a golden opportunity to step back from the song and writing process.  If the song still stands up to everyone’s judgement after a week and needs no further rewrites then it is ready for production.  Producing a song that still needs lyrics changing or light and shades discovered can harm the song.

Production Ideas

Demos can also be treated as a scratch pad for production ideas.  It can help when needing to demonstrate creative ideas to other parties of the production.  For example, if a drum loop has been used in the demo and it works then this loop can guide the drummer to work a groove around the demo’s feel.  If a bass guitar with a distortion plug in works in the demo then a producer or bassist may try to recapture that vibe with a pedal and bass amp.  Trying out ideas in a demo can save time in the production phase as trying out millions of ideas that were never going to work for the song are better recorded, heard and declined in the demo format.

Pressure Free Environment

Being able to create with no real sense of pressure is very liberating, the best and most organic musical choices can be made in this frame of mind.  I’ve taken some client demos and used stems out of their demo sessions as for what they’ve created in these frames of minds have been outstanding.

5 Tips For Tracking Electric Guitar

Tracking electric guitars can be one of the most enjoyable instruments to record as there’s so many variables to the sound and style in which it is played.  For this article lets assume the player, either yourself or someone you are recording, is a guitar god and that their abilities are flawless.  What should you as a engineer do to ensure his performance translates well to the recording.  Here are my 5 tips for tracking electric guitar.

Restring

Avoid using guitars that have rusty old strings as such strings can provide you with a dull tone with a compromised sustain.  Make sure the guitar is restrung well.  Look to see that the strings are wound properly at the tuning pegs and that the guitar has been played in a little before recording.  Freshly strung guitars need their strings “stretched in” to stop the instrument from going out of tune during playing.  This can easily be done by tuning in a string and pulling it up and away from the fingerboard at fret 12.  This will apply even tension to where the string meets both the bridge and nut.  Stretch the string away from the fingerboard then retune it.  Repeat this process until the distance between the string being “in tune” to “out of tune” narrows.

Tuning And Intonation

So the guitar is in tune…

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Sunday Sound Effects Round Up - Chuck Russom FX, Wildtrack, Sonniss, A Sound Effect

Chuck Russom FX Gun Sound Library Giveaway

Chuck Russom FX is giving away 2 single user licenses of their multi-channel weapon sound library; Guns Complete comprises 10GB of Gun Sounds worth $295. The giveaway ends March 31, 2015. All you need to do to enter is provide your name and email address.

Wildtrack Release Gear Drone & Room Tones Library

Alvaro de Iscar has released his latest library - Gear Drone & Room Tones. This collection of sounds, include a variety of ambiences, gear drones, and room tones recorded during the last few years! 54 tracks recorded in different recording sessions during last few years. 48Khz and 24 bits HD Audio. Room Tones, Designed Ambiences and Gear Drones recorded and edited for audio atmos designers.

Gear Drone & Room Tones is just 23.88 Euros inc vat.

Sonniss Offer The Chance To Win Over 200 Sound Effects Libraries

Tim approached all the sound effects suppliers on Sonniss to see if they would be up for Sonniss giving away their libraries in a competition for the sound effects community. Some said yes and others thought he was crazy. The upshot of this is than Tim McHugh at Sonniss has been able to put together an amazing collection of sound effects libraries worth nealry $8500. That’s 204 libraries containing nearly 200GB of files. To stand a chance of winning you need to go over to Sonniss and enter name and email address and next month 2 lucky winners will be selected at random.

A Sound Effect Release The Windmill

The Windmill library has organic-sounding recordings of wood, stone and metal. Crunches, grindings, rumbles, rhythm, squeaks, roars, movements, gears – it’s all there, captured in an old windmill. This library focuses on the sounds of the wings, the main axis, the grindstone, the flour beaters and the global atmosphere – and they’re perfect for sounds of a wooden boat, wagons, structures, ropes etc. It features both interior and exterior recordings, and you get more than 1 hour and 20 minutes of atmospheric recordings in total.

The Windmill costs just $48 inc vat.

Tip For Switching Audio Inputs And Outputs Fast: Mac

A cool little tip from http://macosxtipsandtricks.com/ and so simple too!

You can switch your Mac input and output sources fast by simply hitting the Option key before clicking the speaker icon and you get the list of all your audio in and out. Nice.

Podcast Extra Interview With Steve Genewick

In this Podcast Extra Interview James Ivey sits down with Steve Genewick. A three time Grammy nominated recording engineer, Steve has over twenty five years of experience, both as a studio and live recording engineer and since 1994 as worked primarily out of Capitol Studios as a staff engineer. 

For the last 12 years, Steve has had the great honour of working closely along side 23 time Grammy award winning engineer/producer Al Schmitt, working with artists like Diana Krall, Chris Botti, Gladys Knight, Neil Young, George Benson, Quincy Jones, Burt Bacharach, and Paul McCartney.  

When not at Capitol, Steve can be found working at any number of the major recording studios in town, or mixing at his own home studio. Take a listen and hear what they ended up chatting about.

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

Download the Pro Tools Expert Podcast as an MP3

Audient Lowers Price Of The Popular iD22 Interface

Audient have announced that they are dropping the price of their iD22 interface to $599. That’s around a $200 drop from the previous price around $799 when it was introduced in late 2013.

If you would like to know more about the Audient iD22 you can watch James’ show & tell video review.

Although launched as a Mac only USB interface in April 2014 Audient released Windows drivers for the iD22.

Audient’s owner Simon Blackwood told us…

We closed a record year in 2014 and significantly increasing our iD22 customer base. Coupled with new, and expanded distribution for 2015 in the US market, this has allowed us to offer the iD22 with the David Dearden-designed all discreet ASP console mic preamps at this extremely competitive price. With its comprehensive feature set and sonic performance, we believe the iD22 is the best value interface on the market and now it’s even more affordable.

More on The Audient iD22

The iD22 is an audio interface and monitoring system with two analog inputs, ADAT in|out and six analogue outputs driven by Burr Brown 24-bit/96kHz convertors. The iD22’s preamplifiers use the discreet class A circuit design from the company’s large format ASP consoles which are used in over 1000 studio’s worldwide.

A-Z Of Pro Tools, Q Is For Quantise

I couldn’t cover the letter Q without looking at quantize. When quantizing people are usually talking about forcing musical events into strict time. Very, very useful but also very misused, how can you use quantize in Pro Tools and how can you avoid over-using it?

Quantize

In Pro Tools you can quantize MIDI notes, audio clips or the audio within clips using elastic audio. This can be rendered or “baked in” to the clip using the quantize window, found under event operations in the event menu and it is this window on which I’ll concentrate here but there are other methods available. If you find you are quantizing everything to a 16th note grid after you have played it in you might as well enable input quantize, also found under event operations. For some styles this approach is appropriate but I’d think very carefully before leaving it switched on as a matter of course. A more recent addition to Pro Tools, and far more flexible than the previously mentioned approaches is using real time MIDI properties to quantize the unquantized performance in real time, on playback. Much like a real-time MIDI plug-in. Quantize can be applied using real time MIDI properties either on a per track or a per clip basis. For audio there is another option. Using beat detective offers a comprehensive toolkit for manipulating the timing of audio clips. Its been around a long time and the interface is showing its age but it gets the job done and crucially, it offers all the tools you need to fix timing in transient-rich audio all in one place.

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iZotope Announce Ozone 6.1 Free Update

With the the latest update, Ozone 6.1, iZotope has included powerful processing features and brought back a popular feature from Ozone 5. 

New Features in iZotope Ozone 6.1

Users can add an analog-type sound with the Maximizer’s new Tube Limiting mode, which combines the warmth of final stage limiting with the ease and precision of digital maximizing. The resulting audio has a tube warmth while remaining competitively loud and appropriate for modern mastering. With a new algorithm inspired by tube hardware limiters like the Fairchild 670, the Tube Limiter adds a vintage sonic character to Ozone’s maximizing algorithm.

Adaptive Release helps users produce louder, clearer, and fuller masters. This mode for Ozone’s Dynamics module intelligently automates the difficult task of finding the right release times. The compressor actually interacts with the audio in real time, adjusting the release values based on the transient properties of the incoming signal.

iZotope Bring Back Module Presets From Ozone 5

Based on customer feedback, iZotope has also brought back Module Presets, a highly requested feature from existing customers who owned previous versions of Ozone. Module Presets help users to experiment with different module settings. Users can more easily load and save settings for individual modules without affecting the settings of other modules.

iZotope’s Ozone product manager Izzy Maxwell told us….

We’re really excited to make this free update available to the Ozone 6 community. We’re always listening to customer feedback, and we wanted to bring some exciting new processing into Ozone 6 while adding back a popular feature.

Other additions and enhancements to Ozone 6.1 include selectable segmentation loops, automatic track numbers on export, and sound quality improvements. 

iZotope Ozone 6.1 Pricing

The Ozone 6.1 update is free for existing Ozone 6 customers. For those who don’t yet own Ozone, Ozone 6, Ozone 6 Advanced, and upgrades are on sale through April 9.