Find Your Way Around The MIDI Transport Controls

The MIDI transport control in Pro Tools is filled with hidden gems that help make your life easier when you’re using Pro Tools to compose ideas. Here is our 7 step guide.

  1. Count Off
    Not as some think, a vampire from a children’s TV show, but the option to have a count off before recording starts after you have pressed record. Unless you’re as fast as lizard falling down a greasy drain, then we suggest you use count off when recording.
  2. Wait For Note
    A nice feature which is an alternative to using count off, simply choose this, press record and then Pro Tools will record the minute you play your first note. In theory it sounds cool, but in practice it can seem a bit odd when it all jumps into record as you start to play. Also note that often sounds such as pads start before the bar, so wait for note may not be suitable on such occasions.
  3. Click
    If you need a metronome then choose click. Double clicking on it will open up a preference dialogue box that enables you to set it just how you like, you can even use your own custom sounds. Watch this video here to see how.
  4. MIDI Merge
    A great way to create over dubbed parts - if you use in conjunction with loop record, then you can create cool rhythms as it passed around the loop each time. Even better, if you set up all your MIDI tracks beforehand then you can keep Pro Tools in record and move between tracks to get an idea down fast.
  5. Meter
    Double click on meter to change the meter and resolution of your project. Please note this is position specific so make sure you have your timeline set to the position you wish when making any changes.
  6. Tempo Resolution
    You can use tempo resolution to adjust the rate of the metronome, a cool trick a drummer showed me, often a 4 beat to the bar metronome may not give as tight a performance than working with an 8 beat to the bar metronome - adjust this to try. Remember if the Tempo Ruler is enabled then you need to double click the red diamond at the start of the timeline to adjust this.
  7. Tempo Ruler Enable
    Perhaps the thing that causes most confusion is Tempo Ruler Enable. If you have it engaged (blue) then Pro Tools sets tempo based data in the timeline and many time based features such as Identify Beat, require this to be switched on to work. If you need to change tempo using the tempo ruler, then simply double click on the red diamond at the start of the time-line. Remember, if you make tempo changes in your track then many more tempo markers will appear across the timeline to show each tempo entry. Double click on any of them to adjust settings. (see below)

Tempo Ruler Enabled Timeline

Manual Tempo Enabled TimelineWe’ll look at tempo and meter settings in another article and outline how these can help add more variety to your performance.

One You May Have Missed - How To Rewire Reaper Into Pro Tools

One of our most watched videos that you may have watched - in this video find out how easy it is to ReWire Reaper into Pro Tools and open up a new world of VST and AU possibilities!

UK Broadcasters Set To Adopt New Loudness Standards In 2013

UK Broadcasters are expected to begin implementing new loudness regulations next year after the Digital Production Partnership (DPP) publishes a new set of guidelines. Variations in volume are the single biggest cause of viewer complaints, according to the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), which has published its own standard for broadcasters to measure and normalise audio using loudness meters rather than peak meters. The DPP is now working with trade body UK Screen on an amended version of the EBU spec R128, which it expects to publish in the first quarter of next year.

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How To Use Pro Tools I/O Setup Window

We have been asked several times recently whether we had covered how to use the I/O Setup window in Pro Tools 10. 

We covered the basic use of I/O Settings in part 4 of my First Steps series.

We discussed it in Podcast 14.

I also wrote a complete workshop article in Sound on Sound on the subject too.

I hope it helps some of you de-mystify this area of Pro Tools.

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Apogee About To Announce Quartet Interface

The pro audio world is currenlty leaking like a seive with new product announcements; yesterday the new Maschine and today the new Apogee Quartet - which we are guessing is the big brother of the Duet.

All we have is this leaked picture, but the tease advert on their website shows it in front of an iMac with a guitar behind it, so it’s aimed squarely at the home recording market.

Interface? We’re guessing Firewire or USB, but it’s unlikely would throw Thunderbolt at a prosumer product - would be nice to be proved wrong. More soon.

How To Get The Lead Sound From Good Time By Owl City And Carly Rae Jepsen

Russ responds to another email on how to get the sound from a chart track.

In this one he shows how to recreate the lead sound featured in the song using just the stuff in Pro Tools. He also expresses concern about Carly dropping her phone in the pool.

Sampleism Offers Free Stuff And Free Account Upgrades


On podcast # 29 we talked a bit about Sampleism, a web site offering Community Based Sample Libraries. Sampleism founder and Pro Tools Expert community member Glyn Lloyd provided us with additional information about Sampleism.
Sampleism is a platform that allows anybody to create an account to upload and sell their own samples, loops, kits and patches. The offerings include sample packs from established brands (Digital Redux, Total Composure, Synth Magic, Skint Loops, etc.) along with offerings from new, amateur and totally unique developers (Spidergod, MA-Simon, From A Faraway Place, Papas St Germain, Temporal Geometry, Michael Beitenholz, TD Samples, etc.)

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New Generation Maschine Video

Watch an incredible performance from Jeremy Ellis with the new Maschine and Maschine Mikro. He creates a track completely from scratch — the sound you hear was recorded live in one take without any overdubs or post production. Filmed at the abandoned former US listening station on Berlin’s Teufelsberg.

Why We Often Get The Service We Do From Music Retailers

We have run a number of surveys over the last year regarding advice, service and support in the music retail sector.

Here’s the rub, to offer a decent level of service requires money, to invest in stores, staff and after sales. Take a great UK dealer Absolute Music, they have just made a significant investment in a new store, with lots of value added services such as rehearsal rooms and a full blown studio.

We all like a bargain, I’m like a shark when it comes to buying things and seeking out a great deal - but even the picture above depresses me from Guitar Centre. It’s an advert for a brand new product, which is bound to be in high demand, yet already before being in stock it’s discounted.

I’m no fan of price fixing, but if dealers are just trying to race to the bottom of the pond on price, then our desire to get the service we want and often need is far less likely.

There will always be those trying to win our business by offering discount, but be warned, often the cheapest dealer is not the best. If we just buy on price then we get the service we deserve. Discuss.

Native Instruments Maschine II - Full Spec And Pic

NI have announced the next version of Maschine - Maschine II

Here it is, next-generation design, multi-colored pads, timestretching capabilities, and more.

This next generation of MASCHINE has numerous enhanced workflow improvements for an even more intuitive and faster performance. Now with heightened sensitivity, each one of the 16 touch-pads can be assigned a different color to easily separate and identify sounds, patterns, groups, and scenes. With the New MASCHINE you can timestretch and pitch shift your samples directly from the hardware, eliminating the need to jump back and forth from host systems. The hardware design has changed a bit; one notable addition is the new master push encoder with grid, and the 47 all-new click-buttons that help to speed up the workflow. The displays have been updated also; the new high contrast displays have a higher viewing angle that will help keep things visible, even with some difficult live performance placements. More hardware and less software, the New MASCHINE allows for Host Transport Control, meaning that the hardware’s transport controls can be used to control the host DAW when the unit is being used as a VST, Audio Unit or RTAS plug-in. There are also some new effects such as Transient Master, Tape and Tube Saturators that will further help to sculpt performances, and a full version of the MASSIVE synthesizer is included with 1,300 earth-shattering sounds to play with. Additional design features include a fully customizable look; magnetic faceplates and removable knobs let you incorporate your own style with optional MASCHINE CUSTOM KITS that can be purchased separately.

Studio Powerhouse
The New MASCHINE integrates easily into your computer-based studio setup. Use the hardware controller to find, load, and play sounds, automate parameters, and arrange patterns on the fly. Combine this with the ability to control and sequence all of your external hardware instruments, or switch to MIDI mode to control other software.

After quickly and intuitively developing your ideas, drag and drop your patterns as MIDI or audio files directly into your DAW to finalize and mix your production. You’ll soon realize The New MASCHINE is a powerhouse capable of revolutionizing the way you make music.

Creative Performance Tool
The New MASCHINE is fast becoming the ultimate performance tool for creative musicians. The New MASCHINE controller is super-sturdy, yet easily portable. The highly responsive pads now have heightend sensitivity and can easily be assigned different colors to keep your kits organize. The new Master Push Encoder and endless rotary knobs are addictively playable, while the two improved high-resolution backlit displays keep you informed of what’s going on - perfect for any club or stage.

Use the New MASCHINE as an instrument for performing your own tracks, or sync it with other gear like TRAKTOR PRO 2 (sold separately) to add more dynamics to your live set.

Supreme Sounds Mode
The New MASCHINE comes with over 6GB of ready-to-use, professional and inspiring sounds. Create rhythms and melodies right away with the included drum kits, one-shot samples, basses, synths, and acoustic instruments - all fully tagged for easy browsing. It also includes KOMPLETE ELEMENTS, providing more than 1,000 stunning sounds drawn from the flagship KOMPLETE 7, and a full version of the MASSIVE synthesizer with 1,300 earth-shattering sounds used widely in all styles of music today. And now, you can add extra fuel to your New MASCHINE with the new range of MASCHINE EXPANSIONS - premium sample kits created by renowned sound designers and artists.

New Software Enhancements in Version 1.8
• MK2 controller support
• Colors for Groups, Sounds, Scenes, and Patterns
Full version of MASSIVE synthesizer
• Offline time stretching and pitch shifting
• New effect: Transient Master
• New effect: Tape and Tube Saturators
• Save group with samples feature
• Host Transport Control: If Maschine is run as a plug-in, the hardware transport controls can be used with the host
• Sample play position indicator on the waveform (hardware and software)
• AutoWrite pinning
• AutoWrite on Maschine Mikro
• Improved handling of missing samples
• Pre-hear samples from the hardware browser before loading them
• Choke all playing sampler voices feature (“panic button”: Shift + Mute)
• Revised select page (hardware) with access to note length
• Quick select events of a sound in a pattern (Shift + Select + Pad)
• Quick erase events of a sound in a pattern (Erase + Select + Pad)