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Pro Tools Expert Podcast 127

Russ, Mike, Neil and James are back to bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Groove 3 Titles We Like

Competitions 

Deals page

Talking Points Kindly Sponsored By Universal Audio

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions

  • Bertrand Grichting - Problems with some SATA controllers and SSD drives dropping the SATA buss speed.
  • Tom Scrivano  - Some graphics problems on Windows due to settings on Run As Administrator.
  • Carsten Groa - Following up on Pro Tools reliability can be other software like  the graphics driver.
  • Eric Johnson - Following James’ drive failure Eric uses a RAID array for this backup system so he has redundancy.
  • Matt Greaves - Follow up on fear and creativity and connecting it to the way some institutions teach techniques
  • Brian Williams - Wanted to share a video lecture by Andrew Scheps on various audio codecs, formats and perceived audio quality 
  • Neale Eckstein - Why is the phase invert only available in a plug-in, why isn’t it built into the mixer? You can sign up on the Pro Tools IdeaScale if you would like this feature. 
  • Tom Scrivano - Waves have told him that the Element will be supported with their SoundGrid DSP system as well StudioRack but no ETA yet.
  • Chris Linder - What podcasts are you listening to at the moment? Chris suggests 2 both available on itunes ToneBender and Indie Game Audio  We would add Mix Notes From Hell
  • Tony Molica - Following our comments with problems using Finder he recommends Snapper from Audio Ease. Also there is AudioFinder from Iced Audio too. 

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea

  • Mark Farrow - Any experience of Thunderbolt hubs?
  • John Howell - problems getting all 8 channels from an Audient ASP880 into an Avid Omni.

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

Download the Pro Tools Expert Podcast as an MP3

Pro Tools Expert Podcast 126

Russ, Mike, Neil and James are back to bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Groove 3 Titles We Like

Competitions 

Deals page

Sonnox Community Award

  • The winner for June is Chris Linder

Talking Points Kindly Sponsored By Universal Audio

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions

  • Paul Sinkovich - There is a Pro Tools Shortcuts app from Xerxes Dennis called Pro Tools Hotkeys  which is available on the iOS and Android platforms
  • Jean-Michel Bocéno - Has a tip on creating auto talkback without an specialised plug-in.
  • Jason Wilson - There is a video showing track freeze in Pro Tools 12 
  • Anthony Dominello - Experience of mastering bots and client’s response.

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea

  • Bill Metoyer Can I get a Waves Gold bundle for Pro Tools 7 LE?
  • Mark Beling - Unable to preview audio clips in Pro Tools, any ideas?
  • Jeff Denadel - Are there any problems in using Thunderbolt, Firewire 800 and Firewire 400 together? Also what about USB3 for Pro Tools 11?

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

Download the Pro Tools Expert Podcast as an MP3

Pro Tools Expert Podcast 125

Russ, Mike & Neil bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Groove 3 Titles We Like

Competitions 

Deals page

Talking Points 

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions

  • Joe Teresi - tip on using clip gain before a compressor to get a more even sound.
  • Donald Crees has let up know about a free AAX plug-in and special offer on another AAX plug-in
  • Justin Bryant - Can you do an article on building a studio in the garden?
  • Matt Greaves has found a possible bug with Autotune Evo when importing a track into Pro Tools 11
  • Dualta Barrett - Can you do a video on using ring modulation?
  • Mark Kaim - Suggestions of how to do the mastering bot versus human challenge
  • Matt Cheney - Can you do a video on the best ways and plug-ins to use to handle frame rate changes?

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea

  • Shiv Dhuna - Why do the tracks that I export from FL Studio don’t sound the same in Pro Tools?
  • Eric Everhart - Why do plug-ins like Slap Delay II or Extra Long Delay II don’t work in Pro Tools 11?  Video on Time Adjuster plug-in

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

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Pro Tools Expert Podcast 122

Mike, Neil, James & Mike Aiton bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Groove 3 Titles We Like

Competitions 

Deals page

Talking Points

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions

  • Vincent Burel - Recently tried Pro Tools with Voicemeeter virtual mixing console application for Windows 
  • Wim Müller - Can you make a tutorial covering recording organs
  • Mike Berry - Be Aware on Windows about cloning from a rotational drive to an SSD as the block size may not match.  More here & MiniTool software
  • Andy Hagerman - Comments on of Native and DSP hardware comparisons and also what will happen with an offline bounce when you system is close to capacity.

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea

  • Graham Archer - Why is their still a delay in the side chain with native plug-ins on an HDX system?
  • David Plumb - Advice on how to deliver stems of songs to counteract  the clients comments about changing levels

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

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Have Hardware Solutions Had Their Day Or Not? Discuss

In Podcast 117 we discussed Michael’s comments he made in a story we posted. Two community members picked up on where we took the discussion as we moved onto Native versus DSP hardware and the pros and cons of both. Anthony Dominello first… 

Hello team, your Proposal Guy is also an IT guy with 20 years’ experience and so I want to elaborate on the discussionon native vs. DSP. During the conversation James mentions Moore’s law (good on ya!), but then dropped the thread. I wanted to elaborate on that a little to give some more perspective on this since I think it has implications for the whole industry, and Avid (or any other company with hardware DSP solutions to hawk) in particular.Moore’s law states, in simple terms , that the power of computing chips will double every 18 months. Leaving aside for the moment the question of how long that can be sustained, the fact is that it has held true since Gordon Moore (co-founder of Intel) coined it in the early ’70s. What that means, in practical terms, is that DSPs make no sense from a performance standpoint due to the huge lag time in developing a new platform like, say, HDX. By the time it even gets to market it’s obsolete or, at very least, on its last legs as a cutting-edge platform. It would be phenomenal if there were some way to upgrade the chipset on DSP cards like some install faster processors on their computers or overclock them. The problem with that, however, is that HDX (SoundGrid, etc.) are proprietary architectures and are in most cases illegal to “hack.” PC Architecture has been open since IBM introduced it so anyone can modify it at their own will and peril.This has happened in the computer industry for decades. That is, someone develops a hardware solution for something— say encryption. Then someone else figures out a way to do the same thing in software and. as computers get more powerful, software becomes the preferred option. The history of IT is littered with companies who bet it all on a hardware solution, only to be swept away when increased computing power made their hardware solutions too expensive to compete. This is what Avid is up against when selling HDX systems to new customers. Certainly the quest for low latency is a factor, but the actual power of the DSP chips themselves makes less and less sense in the face of modern computing. I believe you said it yourselves when you speculated that HD Native may be Avid’s true “killer app,” were it not for the totally unnecessary limitations Avid put on it’s I/O count.

Chris Carey picked up Mike’s thoughts about having an Intel chip or chips as a DSP card…

Regarding your DSP discussion in podcast 117, you were trying to think of examples where companies had designed DSP around a standard intel chip. While it’s not exactly the same, Logic used to offer (and may still, but I’ve been PT only for several years) a feature to setup processing nodes via LAN. I tend to agree with Russ’ statement about changing the focus of plugin development to efficiency, but this would be an incredibly useful feature for those moments where you need just a little more processing headroom for your 127th convolution reverb.  What are your thoughts on this? Has dedicated hardware had its day or not?

Mike was recently talking to someone who was considering purchasing an Avid S3L. As we discussed it, the reason for this choice became apparent - it was largely driven by the fact that the S3L is a dedicated hardware solution based around the Avid HDX architecture with dedicated I/O that makes it great for tracking and mixing. It doesn’t do anything else, doesn’t pick up email, surf the internet, it has been optimised to be a great recording and mixing system.

In a similar vein Russ did some experiments on running a clean system and comparing the performance of both setups on the same computer.

Do you prefer the flexibility of a computer based solution that can do many tasks with the same system or the benefits of multiple dedicated solutions?  Is the Avid S3L the unsung hero of the Avid range? Discuss….

Michael Carnes On Convolution Or Algorithms For Amp Modelling Plug-ins 

In Podcast 117 we discussed Exponential Audio’s Michael Carnes’ comments he made in a story we posted. Michael has since come back with a response to our discussion….

I listened to podcast 117 with a rising level of bemusement as you riffed on my ability to generate cabinet models while avoiding the use of convolution.  I remember my remarks on convolution as perhaps being strong, but applying only to reverb and not in a more general sense.  Let me take this opportunity to clarify. It’s true that I’m not a big fan of convolution in reverb.  Besides the fact that it models a complex space with measurements taken from only a few point sources, I also believe it’s overkill in terms of the way we actually perceive space.  The auditory cortex is masterful at reducing data before presenting it to the brain, and I suspect that reverberation is heard only after the vast majority of data are discarded.  We hear in a sort of ‘shorthand’ and I think it’s more important to try and understand what gives us the perception of space than to try to follow a pure mathematical model. Now when we think of cabinet models as recorded, we’re listening to the output of a microphone or two.  While the actual sound in the studio might be complex, the complete reality of the recording is the output of those microphones.  As such we can think of the whole system—guitar, amp, transformer, cabinet, microphones—as a filter.  And convolution is actually a very good starting point for that sort of filter.  It is much more capable at duplicating complex response curves than a more simple IIR (Infinite Impulse Response) filter.  And, up to a point, efficiency is not a huge problem.  That breaking point is where the impulse response is also capturing a room in addition to the cabinet.  This problem is exacerbated as sampling rates go up. You correctly identify the fact that most convolvers use a static impulse response, while the reality is dynamic and considerably more complex.  Nothing much in the real world is linear, and that’s especially true of speakers, mic diaphragms, and things of that nature.  And while there are issues to consider in creating a dynamic convolver, it’s certainly not impossible.  It might turn out to be among the best approaches.  The room part of the sound may be best handled by a reverberator of some type, but convolution is a great approach for modeling the physical chain. I’m flattered that my name came up in the discussion, but there are many people working in that field who deserve the real credit for what they’ve done and what I’m sure they’re working on.

Michael, your understanding of these issues is confirmed in the wisdom of your response here and your openness and humility is refreshing in an industry full of celebrities.

 

Pro Tools Expert Podcast 120

Russ, Mike & James are joined by Mike Aiton to bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

It’s Pro Tools week on Groove 3 and there are loads of Pro Tools titles going this week for just $5.

Competitions 

Sonnox Community Award

The winner for May is Matt Blue aka kcatthedog on Disqus. Matt submitted this video on modifying a ribbon mic and loads of comments on Disqus. He wins a plug-in of his choice from the Sonnox Elite Collection.

Deals page

Talking Points    

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions   

  • Tony Molica, DF Tweedie and Jeff Lorber on latency and delay compensation.
  • Dustin Bosovitch & Brendan Biele on MIDI over Bluetooth in Yosemite
  • Glenn Skinner - Please do a review on Arpology from SampleLogic?
  • Frankie Mariano - Give us your best american accents…
  • Michael Leo - What should be do about naturally occurring hearing loss with age?

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea   

  • Martin Ek - Should I use the K-System or EBU R128 when mastering albums?
  • Jon Doig - What MIDI keyboard should I use with Pro Tools 11?
  • Steve Deutsch - Where can I find a copy of Pro Tools 9?
  • Alexander Lott -Advice please about using colour coding? Julian’s Pro Tools Fundementals Article
  • Jessie Lloyd - Unable to install Pro Tools 11 get an Assertion error PT Prefs Helper & Cocktail
  • Siobhan Redmond - Analogue Summing v Mix In The Box

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

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WHY SOMETIMES YOU SHOULD WORK FOR FREE - SOME FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Not everyone can earn top dollar and mix the latest Coldplay album or the next James Bond movie. We all start out somewhere near the bottom and try and climb that greasy pole and to attempt to reach the “summit of audio excellence”. Whilst we all try to earn enough pennies to feed our dogs (in this ‘ever harder to succeed creative world’) sometimes we need to work for free (or virtually free). Here are a few good reasons why not just beginners should think about this…

Networking

 Everyone knows someone. When starting out, some of the fastest connections you can make in the industry will be through some of the low budget or gratis work. Sometimes, if you are good and persevere, the initial work may be for free, but it can put you out there in front of people who otherwise would never have heard of you. Perserverence pays off, but the abilty to network pays off more.

Click to read more ...

Pro Tools Expert Podcast 119

 

Russ, Mike, Neil & James are back to bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

New titles from our Podcast sponsor Groove 3

Competitions 

Deals page

Talking Points    

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions   

  • Boris Prell - Enigma software was developed by Evolution, a keyboard brand that was acquired by M-Audio many years ago. 
    • Enigma was designed to configure the following keyboards:
      • Evolution MK-4xx Keyboard Series and UC33e
      • Axiom 25/49/61 - not mkII or Pro or Air
      • Oxygen “Silver” line that’s the 8v2, 49 and 61 - not “Blue” line
      • Keystation Pro 88
      • O2
      • Ozonic
      • Trigger Finger 
      • X-Session
    • You could use these controllers within Pro Tools, but you would have to program the MIDI CC commands manually using the Legacy MIDI Controller file for CS-10, should work up to version 8. 
    • With the Axiom mkII series M-Audio implemented HyperControl which is directly supported in Pro Tools
    • With the Oxygen “Blue” line M-Audio implemented DirectLink a kind of HyperControl ‘Lite’ which is also directly supported in Pro Tools
  • Anthony Dominello - DSP v Native - follow up on Moore’s Law
  • Xavier Dsouza - How do you create the sounds and those effects from “Sentido” by Dimitri Vegas and Like Mike vs Steve Angello
  • Hilary Poole - How do you  create a hip-hop technique for using a “glide” feature to pitch shift kicks.
  • Jeff Lorber -  Track naming tips
  • Rob Macfarlane - Problems with delay compensation during tracking

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea   

  • Robert Rosner - How do I get back the Snare sample in an Xpand2?
  • John - Problems using Alesis DM10 with Gen 16 Cymbals YouTube video
  • Igor Sim - What Firewire card do you recommend for a Focusrite Saffire 56?
  • Timur K - How can I do one project in 5.1 surround when I have Pro Tools vanilla?
  • Chris Kennedy - How do I get the EQ I hear in my car?
  • Paul Hoffman - When bringing a 16 bit OMF into Pro Tools should I create 24 bit media or not?

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

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Pro Tools Expert Podcast 118

Russ & Mike are joined by Julian Rodgers to bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Special Offers from our Podcast sponsor Groove 3

Competitions

Deals page

Talking Points    

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions  

Take a look at RSPE Facebook page and their special Pro Tools prices. 

  • Michael Hanson - Can make a guide to get existing content into the new AIR Instruments?
  • Kim Owen-Brown - Love the podcasts and thanks to Rob Papen for excellent customer service.
  • Eric Everhart - Could you compare the 1073 hardware to the UAD 1073?
  • Todd McKernan - Whats the next category of clones we might see?
  • Mark Phillips - A heads up that Pianoteq 5 is out. Can you check it out please?
  • Chris Carey - Logic used to offer to setup processing nodes on a LAN.

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea   

Take a look at the new 4 month course - Diploma in Audio Post Production & Game Sound

  • Evan Magness - Even if the waveforms have been deleted I still can’t record over them.
  • Cody Glasbergen - Can’t see the waveforms on audio tracks until I zoom in a lot.
  • Chris Brown - Problems with transport functions on an M-Audio Oxygen 61 keyboard.
  • Andy Goldberg - Can you use Revoice Pro to tune vocals instead of Auto Tune? Check out Mike’s video on the Synchro Arts You Tube channel

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

Download the Pro Tools Expert Podcast as an MP3

Professional Courtesy – A Cautionary Tale - Part 2

In part 1 I described the start of what should have been a simple handover to the US International Re-Versioning Mixer of a voiceover session that I had recorded here in the UK, and looked at Aiton’s First Law of Post Production  - “Don’t Pass Sh##t On”.

Aiton’s Second Law of Post Production  - “If something has gone awry, talk the problem through on the phone privately - email is very clumsy”

For some reason, the US International Mixer wasn’t answering his phone. He kept sending public emails to all that “he was under the impression that I would provide all recorded materials not just the selected takes”.  This did not make me look very competent to the production team, despite me having done nothing wrong, as it implied that the error was indeed mine. Humph!

As an aside, one boringly quiet day when I worked at Molinare in Soho, I was lurking in VT transfer trying to learn something about the new VT decks that were appearing, when there was a problem with a transfer. A production mixed by an outside dubbing mixer being transferred to a Transmission tape was peaking at PPM 7. I discreetly rang him and asked him if he would like it if I layed off that section of the mix into an AMS Audiofile and controled those peaks a bit, or would he rather I sent the tape back discreetly. He chose the former and his dignity and our friendship was cemented, without a dent in a single production manager.

Aiton’s Third Law of Post Production – “do not point fingers – be discreet – honour amongst thieves”

Sending the US International mixer screenshots of the session showing all takes present in he clip list was having no effect. I wondered if the US Mix session had had the non-timeline clips stripped out before it was passed onto the international mix session? The international mixer seemed to refuse to follow any initiative (like download my session and check or re-import my session), it seemed very much to be a case of spoiled brat “I want it and I want it in my timeline now, and it’s your fault”.

Its funny that a polite follow up from me the next day with offers of how to sort the problem out and how we could avoid any further issues was met with another email to all the production staff with “I have figured it out over here. All of the ALTs are in the handles of the selected takes”. Er  - no, you have blatantly NOT figured it out and are you are again demonstrating that you are rude and interested in one-upmanship alone.

Aiton’s Fourth Law Of Post Production - “do not sh##t on the doorstep”

So if you are reading this, “Mr US International Version Mixer” – you were highly discourteous and bit the helpful hand that feeds you. Your stems that you produce from this mix will be very highly scrutinized for faults or incorrect dips by others now,  who are unfortunately aware of how you behave. You have not made a raft of friends through your lack of courtesy. It is a small industry and Aiton’s Fourth law applies. A cautionary tale indeed. 

Professional Courtesy – A Cautionary Tale - Part 1

I was recently the recipient of what I found to be “quite unprofessional and discourteous behavior” by one of my industry colleagues. It minded me to put pen to paper to make the point, and pass on some sage like advice from this grumpy old fart to any of the newer entrants to our creative industry!

I recently have been recording a narration for high profile American client with a famous English actor – which would become part of the World international full mix, as well as the American Full Mix. We had a UK re-versioning producer attending at my studio, and were also given direction from NY by the American Director via Source-Connect Now (which incidentally is most excellent – you really should try it!).

Before recording commenced we had agreed a workflow where I would complete a composite best take track (by dropping in to the track to make any corrections). If there were any script alts or different versions required, we would provide these on an “alts track”. All recordings from the session (mis-reads, tech errors, or artistic declines) would of course be passed on in the clip list for “parts and spares”.

After recording had finished, I cleaned up the best take track and removed breaths, clicks and silence etc and then fine placed the take to picture and/or performance rhythm.

I then deleted all non essential tracks, video and guide audio from the session, leaving the two tracks; 1) Main VO Best Takes, & 2) VO ALT takes. I removed any plug-ins from the two tracks. Next I made sure the two tracks were routed to the main output (so they could be heard when the session was re-opened). Then, after “save session copying the session” I saved the session as “sent to client”. I closed the session and then opened the “Save Session Copied As..” session to make sure it opened ok and that all 140 recordings were in the session clip list, before zipping it up and sending to the client via my ftp site. The client gets a nice clean uncluttered session with all required audio exactly as discussed and I have opened and proved the session. Remember, one part of professional courtesy is:

Aiton’s First Law of Post Production  - “Don’t Pass Sh##t On”

Next I sent the clients (including the American post house mixers and international re-versioning mixers the download link. I included a polite note detailing my record chain, mic used, compressor, eq and plugs etc and asked if everyone was happy with the record and could I do anything for the next one to improve anything further to anyone’s taste etc. I was polite, informative and ruthlessly efficient (imho). The VO session should have been a breeze to import and to mix.

Imagine my surprise, when having finished recording and editing the third hour of voiceover, almost a whole week later, I get a very short snarky email very late at night from the US International Re-Versioning Mixer, cc’ing all the production team (UK and US) asking, “where are all the alternate VO reads for the second episode and can you send them to me NOW”.

Oh my goodness, what have I done wrong and how can I help? I immediately emailed back suggesting they should be in the region list and that I would check my end. I dropped what I was doing and opened the “sent to client” session whilst I downloaded the session that had been put on my ftp site. Both were the same and all tracks were correct and all the recorded takes were in the clip list. I tried calling the mixer, but no answer.

All will be revealed, as to what happened next, in part 2 of Professional Courtesy – A Cautionary Tale.

Are Your Idols Stifling Your Creativity?

Another community member has offered to contribute to the site. This time it is Jamie Muffett who describes himself as a British Producer/Engineer/Mixer and musician working in New York City at Mercy Sound Studios in Manhattans East Village. Jamie starts with a quote from William Faulkner…

“In writing, you must kill your darlings.”

We all have our heroes who inspire us, but does this somehow hinder our own musical development? Sometimes it does, and that is what I want to talk about in this article.

When I talk with artists about the development of their music, referencing their inspiration is part of the process and helps to explain their vision. 

“I’m kind of thinking Metallica meets early 2000’s Shania Twain, you feeling me?”.

This is normal (maybe not that specific example), but this should only be a jumping off point. It’s a way to start the process but should not become an obsession that informs every decision throughout, especially when the artist has only one source of inspiration. 

In the advertising and TV/Film world there might be a very good reason for using an unknown artist as a good “stand in” for a known artist. Financially speaking, paying for an unknown artist who sounds similar to a known is often a cheaper option. That’s entirely different to being a unique artist in your own right. 

And being unique is my ultimate point. Everyone with access to a computer (so… pretty much everyone), is able to self-release their music to a saturated and often disinterested audience on social media. Apart from the obvious lack of originality and creativity, why would anyone be interested in an attempt at a Lumineers song when they could listen to an ACTUAL Lumineers song? And let me assure you, if you think you are cashing in on an artist’s fan base by attempting to sound like them, I would be very careful. Fans especially can be very protective and hostile to artists they deem are attempting to muscle in on their hero’s territory. 

When I start a new project with someone, we begin by discussing references and it gives us a jumping off point. This leads to new and fresh ideas and the end result can be unrecognizable from the artists we had discussed. 

Love him or hate him, John Mayer said this gem:

“it’s my failure to sound like my heroes that’s enabled me to sound like myself”. 

I’d love to hear your opinion on this: do you agree? Is there anything wrong with trying to produce music that sounds like your heroes? Are you doing yourself a disservice? Let me know…

Pro Tools Expert Podcast 117

Russ, Mike, Neil & James bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Special Offers from our Podcast sponsor Groove 3

Competitions

Deals page

Talking Points   

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions  

Take a look at RSPE’s 500 Configuration tool and No Brainer Deals 

  • Chris Masters - Nevada Music hosting a technology evening, More info here
  • Glenn Skinner - PT11 the Midi Thru defaults to None - wasted an hour hunting this down. 
  • Brendan Biele - Brick And The Bullet Low latency high quality audio over wifi See the pitch on KickStarter 

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea   

Take a look at Alchemea Sessions 

  • Problems with iLok and License Manager with authorisations being unreliable.
  • Is it possible to record from a Karaoke disc to Pro Tools on the same computer?
  • Do you think sites like airgigs are helpful for bringing business in from other places?
  • Problems with a Digi 002 and an OctoPre with Pro Tools 11. - PT Prefs App 
  • Problems with installing virtual instruments with Pro Tools Express
  • Avid Everywhere for audio Webinar 

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes

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To Edit Or Not To Edit? - That Is The Question - Part 1

In another article submitted by a community member, Niklas Blixt will be considering when we should edit and in the next part of this two part series will consider when we shouldn’t edit but leave well alone.  Over to you Niklas…

Two Reasons Why You Should Edit In Pro Tools

Pro Tools has some of the  best editing tools out there. You have Elastic Time, Pitch Shift, etc. Tools that weren’t even thought of back in the days of tape recording. Using Pro Tools as your DAW of choice you have one of the best set of tools to make a production theoretical perfect. So here are 2 reasons I think you should edit your audio…

Noise And Unwanted Sounds

To remove unwanted noise from your recorded material is probably the number one reason to grab your editing tools and start editing. Compared to back in the days where music was recorded onto tape, the computer based recording studio gives you far more options to edit out sounds that you don’t want. However it is easy to go over board and edit out every little noise that you can hear that’s not supposed to be there, like breaths from a singer, guitars strings squealing, etc. In my opinion sometimes editing all of that out can some times kill the vibe of the song. Depending on what style of music you’re dealing with you want to edit out anything that’s distracting. Sometimes a breath or nose from the guitarist moving his fingers on the strings can be noise you want to make it feel more alive. My rule of thumb is if the noise distracts you from hearing the music it has to go.

Pocketing and Pitch Correction

Pocketing is a technique referred to as adjusting and aligning recorded parts so that they’re lined up in time, so it sounds like the band is playing tight. Some people think this is cheating. I’d say it depends on what music style is and what feel you are after. I also know as a session drummer that it’s harder to play tight when recording overdubbing afterwards, compared to being able to play live together with the rest of the band. 

A lot of people also look at pitch correction as cheating. Again I’d say it depends on what style you’re working with, your personal taste, and what the client wants. As a producer or sound engineer you’re there to make the client happy and it is possible to pitch correct without it being audible, again it is about resolving issues that would be distracting. 

It’s all about the music

How much you should edit is ultimately for you to decide. You can go all crazy and edit out every little noise you can hear, quantise everything to the grid and make every note perfectly in tune. Personally I try to edit as little as possible. My rule of thumb is, if it distracts the listener from hearing the music I’ll edit. 

In part 2 we will look at reasons why we should not edit.

Pro Tools Expert Podcast 116

Russ, Neil & Mike bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Competitions

Deals page

Sonnox Community Award For April 2014

  • The winner for posting comments above and beyond the call of duty, is Lightwing aka Patrick. His company is AxeGlove and they make AxeSaks amongst other products

Talking Points   

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions  

  • Thabiso Mabena - Can you do more de-construction videos of well known songs please?
  • Morgan Page - following our tip about Latency Compensation still having trouble with side chaining.
  • John McDaniel - Please distinguish between AAX Native and AAX DSP plug-ins. Our AAX Database
  • Guy Amitai - Can you do a comparison and suggest the best external drives for sample streaming?
  • Anthony Narciso - Thank you for all you do evens a theatre sound designer have helped in what I do.

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea   

  • Having problems using the Akai EIE Pro with Pro Tools Express. - Akai Knowledgebase Article
  • Can I use Pro Tools 7 LE with Windows 7?
  • Can I use the Burl Mothership with an Avid Thunderbolt HD Native box with and without PT HD software.
  • Can you load audio clips from the Pro Tools timeline with the new versos of AIR Structure and Transfuser? Dave Tremblay’s explanation

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes
Download the Pro Tools Expert Podcast as an MP3

Pro Tools Expert Podcast Episode 114

Russ, Mike, & Neil bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Competitions

Deals page

Talking Points   

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions 

  • David Topple - Thanks for all you do and your English voices
  • Scott Gillen - Thanks for the tip about mono clips onto stereo tracks.

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea   

  • Pro Tools Native or HD Native, which should I choose? FAQ pages
  • Advice please on how to Hackintosh a Windows computer Tony Mac web site
  • How can I use a UAD-1 and TC Powercore cards when I have a pci-e computer?
  • Is it possible to capture video and audio in Pro Tools using a  Blackmagic Duo card?
  • Pro Tools Express is not recognising my Focusrite Scarlett 6i6, what I am doing wrong?
  • Advice please on publishing a diary so clients can see availability for studio sessions. 

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes
Download the Pro Tools Expert Podcast as an MP3

Pro Tools Expert Podcast Episode 113

Russ, Mike, Neil & James bring you another show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Competitions

Deals page

Talking Points  

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions 

  • Andy Soemo - Follow up with an problem from podcast 112 - a workaround for getting the transport related count in into the bounce.
  • Tom Scrivano - suggests using Blue Cat Audio PatchWork to help with pre and post processing.

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea   

  • Thoughts on using VST3 VIs in Pro Tools Steinberg on VST3
  • Advice on Setting up a new Mac Pro with Pro Tools for a composer.
  • How do you use the Harmony section of iZotope Nectar 2?
  • Problems moving mono files to stereo tracks.
  • Problems with crackling with Pro Tools SE on Windows 7.

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes
Download the Pro Tools Expert Podcast as an MP3

Help! My Irrational Love Affair With Studio Hardware

WARNING THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS IMAGES OF A GEAR PORN:

Perhaps it is a mid-life crisis, or the pressure of work, or buying a new rack and seeing empty gaps that were begging to be filled, but after shedding all my studio hardware over a decade ago I’ve fallen in love with studio hardware again - I can’t get enough of the old, dusty, electricity loving gear.

Perhaps, it’s the same thing that stops me buying a Kindle (or any other e-book) and still has me filling shelves with real paper books? For me there’s nothing like holding a new book, even better smelling a new book… try it!

I talked about this on the Pro Tools Expert podcast last night with a couple of fellow hardware addicts Neil and James, after I asked the question, what’s wrong with me… but we didn’t have enough time for a full answer to that question. Joking apart, there’s something about hardware gear, as opposed to audio plug-ins that grabs some of us and won’t let us go.

Perhaps it’s what my buddy Vance Powell said to me “with digital two two plus two always equals four, with analog it might be just under four one time and then just over four the next, it’s the chaos that makes the difference.”

Perhaps as creatives we thrive with the tactile and somewhat unpredictable nature of hardware and the maths of a plug-in just leave us cold.

Don’t get me wrong I have the plug-in versions of all my hardware, in rational terms the benfits of plug-ins far outweigh the cons, on price, flexibility and sound. The UAD dbx160 sounds exactly like my hardware and so does their 1176 compressor, so this is not about the sound of a plug-in versus the hardware for me. Perhaps you are one of those people who swears blind you can hear the difference, if so enjoy your gift, my ears are obviously just regular old human ones.

The bottom line is that I’ve spent several weeks trying to rationalize my new found love of hardware, of me choosing to plug cables into a patchbay and mess around with the hardware, instead of just clicking a plug-in on the Pro Tools insert, I still have no answer to why I am restocking on hardware, I don’t have Ebay shares, so it can’t be that.

The fact is, I get far more pleasure out of messing around with hardware rather than simply clicking on plug-ins and presets, oddly enough it takes longer to do everything - and perhaps that’s what it’s all about, not some rose tinted trip back to my early recording days in the 1980s, but that I am actually creating something that is made with my own hands and not making music as if I was using an Excel spreadsheet.

Some of you reading this will think I’m nuts, I know Mike does… perhaps I am?

Discuss.

Pro Tools Expert Podcast Episode 112

Russ, Mike & James bring you another bumper show with talking points, tips, tricks and questions answered.

Competitions

Deals page

Talking Points  

Community Feedback Kindly Sponsored by RSPE Audio Solutions 

  • Jeffrey Lober - We sound like The Young Ones to his American ears
  • Sid Naghdi Known to us as El Sidius following our example and setting up Drumbank for the drum programming and virtue drumming community.
  • Grant Hall - Update to the old Mac Pro to New Mac Pro comparison story.
  • Tony Molica - Confession to buying too much gear and a resolution to learn to use what he has first.
  • Steve Nolte Thank you for all you do.
  • Kris Lawrenson - Can I download your videos?

Questions - Kindly Sponsored by Alchemea   

  • Why do I get AAE Error -6101 intermittently on small and large sessions?
  • Which plug-ins should I use when mixing vocals On - From Groove 3 Mixing with Free Plug-ins or Mix School 101
  • How do I prove to Avid that I am eligible for the Student version of Pro Tools - PTE FAQ page
  • Is it possible to feed the sends post inserts on tracks?
  • Problems with Faders move between recording and mixing in Pro Tools. What’s happening?
  • Can I put my Pro tools 10 license that  came with Pro Tools 10 onto a 1st generation iLok?
  • Why do I get AAE Error -6101 intermittently on small and large sessions?
  • Which plug-ins should I use when mixing vocals Mixing with Free Plug-ins Mix School 101?
  • How do I prove to Avid that I am eligible for the Student version of Pro Tools?
  • Is it possible to feed the sends post inserts on tracks?
  • Problems with Faders move between recording and mixing in Pro Tools. What’s happening?
  • How can I get the click to be included in offline stem mixes?
  • Can I put my Pro Tools 10 license that  came with Pro Tools 10 onto a 1st generation iLok  

Listen on to the Pro Tools Expert Podcast on iTunes
Download the Pro Tools Expert Podcast as an MP3