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. 

Entries in audio (34)

TritonAudio Fethead Review - In-line Microphone Preamplifier

You may recall some months ago Dan did an excelent review of the Cloudlifter CL-1 Mic Activator.

I’ve had the CL-1 on my shopping list for some time and then last week Neil pointed the team to an alternative the TritonAudio Fethead high-end in-line microphone preamp.

So we contacted TritonAudio and they sent us both the TritonAudio Fethead and the TritonAudio Faehead Phantom, the only difference between the two units is that the latter allows for phantom power to reach the microphone.

The TritonAudio Fethead

FetHead is a low-noise, high quality, in-line microphone preamplifier. It provides improved sound for Ribbon and Dynamic microphones. The electronics are housed in a robust metal chassis with a balanced 3-pole female XLR input and a balanced 3-pole male XLR output, rugged enough for use at home, in the studio or on tour.

FetHead is available in three versions
  • Fethead: A regular version for Ribbon and Dynamic microphones
  • Fethead Phantom: A FetHead for Condenser microphones
  • Fethead Filter:A FetHead with high-pass filter for Ribbon and Dynamic mic’s

The TritonAudio Fethead In Use

Setting up is a cinch, you simply put the The TritonAudio Fethead inline with your microphone and then turn on your phantom power to give the unit some juice. There are going to be obvious comparisons between the The TritonAudio Fethead and the Cloudlifter CL-1 and the first is that in terms of use the The TritonAudio Fethead sits better inline as it simply adds an extension to the cable, whereas the Cloudlifter CL-1 is a small box and so more obtrusive in use. The TritonAudio Fethead can be plugged in at any stage either at the end of the microphone or the cable depending on what suits your application.

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Help Please With Audio Quality Control (QC) Issues With "Audio Tics"

Community member Simon Jones from Soundworks in Cardiff has been having problems with some programmes being rejected by a leading UK broadcaster for what their QC team call “Audio Tics”. Simon told us…

They generally originate from location audio on set and can be very tiny clicks which can go through unnoticed. 

He is wondering if anyone knows of a plug-in or other tool to analyse an audio file (e.g. a final mix) for these Audio Tics.  Our only thought was to use DeClicker from iZotope RX but this might be a little overkill.    

Does anyone have any experience of these audio tics issues, how broadcasters assess them and what post production teams can do to resolve them before they get to QC?  They are clearly very minor clicks or they would have been picked up in the normal post production process.

Pro Tools Video Tutorial - Get Your Audio Into The Pocket Using Elastic Audio

The best option is always to get a great performance when recording a band, no amount of editing is going to make up the difference. However there are times when you’re given a track to mix and the you have no option but to try and sharpen the track up.

In this Pro Tools video tutorial ‘Get Your Audio Into The Pocket Using Elastic Audio’ Russ shows how to get three tracks sounding like the band played together, even if they didn’t.

iZotope RX4 Tutorial: How To Soften Pick Noise On Acoustic Guitar Using RX4

In this free iZotope RX4 video tutorial Russ shows how to use iZotope RX4 to soften the pick noise on an acoustic guitar recording.

iZotope say “iZotope’s award-winning RX is the industry standard for audio repair and enhancement, fixing common audio problems like noises, distortions, and inconsistent recordings. Post production professionals, audio engineers, and video editors alike use RX to transform previously unusable audio into pristine material.

RX’s suite of automatic, intelligent modules reduce manual tasks in your audio production workflow, freeing you up to focus on creative experimentation. And for professionals who need to quickly deliver quality results, RX 4 Advanced offers even more specialized post production tools.”

Ex SSL And Sony Oxford Engineer Peter Eastty Joins Apple As Director of SoC (System on Chip) Audio Processing

Apple have recently hired ex SSL and Sony Oxford engineer Peter Eatty as Director of SoC (System on Chip) Audio Processing.

According to his web site Eassty has a long and respected career in audio.

Peter Eastty obtained a B.Sc. in Applied Physics from the University of Durham, (1969) and immediately began creating digital signal processors. His first, built for the university’s electronic music studio, was in daily service for decades. He spent seven years with Electronic Music Studios Ltd. (EMS) in London creating two 192-channel digital signal processors for the company’s in-house studio…

Peter was then invited to start the digital mixing console project at Solid State Logic in Oxford. He gathered in the team he led in the creation of the SSL O1, a combined digital audio recorder, editor, and mixing console. During his years at SSL he developed an integrated software/hardware approach to real-time digital signal processing which was later to become the basis for successful DSP based audio products for SSL, Oxford Digital, SONY and others too shy to be named.

In 1988 with a few key team members, he then started Oxford Digital Limited, having traveled to Japan to secure a long-duration contract to design digital hardware, software, and consoles for SONY. As Chief Engineer, his technical role in the project included overall system design of both software and hardware, with key contributions in the design of DSP algorithms and ASICs. The result of this work, the SONY OXF-R3 digital audio mixing console, is still highly regarded by its users for both sound quality and ergonomics. Peter spent thirteen years as Chief Consultant Engineer at SONY Oxford, Pro-Audio R&D. He was responsible for creating the world-leading team in the real-time processing of 1-bit digital audio (DSD). These advances played a vital role in enabling SONY/Philips to introduce the Super Audio CD. In 2005 he started a new incarnation of Oxford Digital with John Richards and designed hardware, silicon and software for a range of companies in the professional and consumer audio areas.  

Peter has been chair of the UK section of the AES, has presented numerous papers at AES Conventions. He also gives frequent presentations at an international level. Whether dealing one-to-one with world famous musicians and recording engineers or lecturing on DSP to a full auditorium in North America, Japan, or Europe he uses his knowledge of the subject, and a little humor, to inspire and inform.

The story originally reported by Mac Rumors is unclear as to how Eastty’s vast skills will be used, however they speculate;

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Audinate Dante Via Could Blow The Doors Of Audio Networking Wide Open

This week while bumbling around the Internet I stumbled across what I believe could be a total revolution in audio over network technology.

Although still in development and not available until December 2014, Audinate makers of the Dante audio networking hardware and software most notably used by Focusrite in their RedNet range of Interfaces have released a “Heads Up” promo website to show off this new breakthrough.

Simply named “Via” the technology hints at being able to share any connected audio interface whether it be Firewire, USB, Thunderbolt etc available with any other network attached computer.

What Is Dante Via?

So for example you workstation in room 1 of your facility that has a USB attached audio interface could share its audio i/o with the laptop someone is using in room 2 quite simply down a normal Ethernet connection, No proprietary or 3rd party hardware required just a network and Dante Via.

In Audinates own words:

“Dante Via creates a flexible software audio bridge for your computer to connect with local USB, FireWire, Thunderbolt and analog audio interfaces, transforming them into networked devices.”“Dante Via breaks down traditional physical barriers and allows for flexible networking of sound to and from any connected PC or existing Dante endpoint. Send, receive, and monitor any track while also recording. Use your Dante Via to connect to other media applications, such as Cubase, Pro Tools, Logic, PowerPoint audio or Skype. Connect your existing Dante network with Dante Via and extend sound from your Macs and PCs. Or use it to as a tool for monitoring any local or remote channel. Dante Via allows networked audio to be sent anywhere within facilities like schools, houses of worship, meeting centers, conference rooms and court houses. Dante Via makes it easy!”

Find Out More

For more info go take a look at the Dante Via website, watch the video and sign up to the mailing list to get new info as it becomes available.

Things just got very exciting! - Neil Hester  

Avid Apply For Patent On 'Smart' Recording Algorithm

Earlier this year Avid filed a patent application for what they describe as “Metrical grid inference for free rhythm musical input.”

The Problem Of Being Constrained By The Metronome

The basis of the patent revolves around the restrictions often placed the user when recording, in the application for the patent Avid state;

Systems that enable a user to record music for playback or for producing musical notation require that a tempo and a time signature for the music be supplied before the user can start recording. Once the user starts recording, he is constrained to play in time to a metronome click. This is an impediment to recording new ideas, as decisions about changes in tempo and time signature have to be made in advance and the user is unable to introduce timing variations that are a natural part of a performance. If the user opts to turn off the metronome click, he can record in an unconstrained manner, but the recording system is unable to interpret the musical data for quantization or displaying notation because the input is not aligned with an internal tempo map. The requirement to pre-select a time signature and tempo is particularly difficult for less experienced users, who may not be familiar with music theory or even with musical notation. There is therefore a need for musical input systems that free users of this constraint.

What The Technology Aims To Do

The patent goes on to suggest how the algorithm would work;

A free rhythm musical input system enables a user to record in a natural manner by not requiring the user to make decisions about tempo or time signatures. It also removes the constraint of playing at a constant tempo that follows a metronome click. In such a system, the user is able to indicate to the system that he is ready to start recording, e.g., by hitting a record button, and take his time to prepare this thoughts, at which time he can start playing in an expressive manner The system then interprets what the user plays to infer the locations of the measures and beats, and the corresponding tempos and time signatures that best represent the musical intentions of the user.

Audio Or MIDI?

As to the kind of input types the patent suggest both MIDI and Audio;

In the system described above, the free rhythm music is received in the form of a sequence of MIDI events, in which the temporal locations of the notes and their duration are provided explicitly. It may also be possible to receive the music in audio form, and use audio analysis tools to determine the temporal locations of the note onsets and, in some cases, also the durations of the notes within the audio, thus broadening the applicability of the described techniques to acoustic performances or recordings.

Other Similar Software

Other similar software is made such as UJAM technology which allows the user to sing/play into a microphone and then places the music around the free form performance. AudioScore is a similar technology that already ships with Sibelius.

Where Will We See This Technology?

The patent is unclear as to what Avid products would implement this technology, although Avid have been working to create core solutions that can be used in various products such as Pro Tools and Sibelius.

A Point To Mention

The inventor of this technology is Paul Walmsley, who was part of the disbanded Avid Sibelius team and now works with the new team at Steinberg.

The full patent application can be seen here

Do You Have Golden Ears? Take The Test

There’s a lot of discussion doing the rounds at the moment about the quality of recorded music. It all starts with the source material and how well the people making the music know what to listen for.

Philips have create the cool website where you can take some test to see how well you detect changes in sound on the same piece of material. It isn’t perfect and it won’t get you a degree but it’s an excellent way to give your ears a spin.

Furthermore, if you want to help your friends who listen to MP3s hear how different things can sound then this may be a great way to introduce them to critical listening.

More here

Are You Using iOS For Music Making Or Audio? Poll

A few years ago the iPhone and iPad were inheard of and yet in a matter of years it has become a ubiquitous part of modern life. Part of the attraction is of course the huge selection of Apps available, it wasn’t long before Apps were appearing to make music and to record and edit audio.

Avid have made some small steps into the world of iOS with Sibelius support but nothing for Pro Tools users to date, other brands have tried to do more to give their DAW users an iOS experience when working on the move.

So has iOS been the music and audio dream come true for you, or did you dabble and find yourself disappointed?

Please complete our poll - we’ve broken it into professionals (those making a living from music and audio) and enthusiasts to see if there are any trends that emerge. Of course, as ever please leave comments to give more flesh to the poll.

Audio Repair in Music Production: Removing Sudden Unwanted Sounds Video

RX guru Mike has created another RX video for our friends at iZotope showing how to master this awesome plug-in.

An unwanted noise in the background can ruin what would otherwise be a perfect take. In this video, Mike shows you how to use RX 3’s Spectral Repair module to fix problems like a cough or a sound glitch.