Whilst we have some fun and also sometimes help people to make informed decisions with the Pro Tools Expert shoot outs, they are an important part of the audio recording process.
It may seem a tad laborious but comparing the sound of different mics, pre-amps, compressors, in fact anything you use, has been part of the recording engineers workflow for decades. The better the sound going in then the less work you have to do in the mix.
The Best One For The Job
If you are not used to working this way then remember in many cases there’s no such thing as the best mic, best pre-amp or best compressor, it’s more a case of what is the best one for this job? One voice will sound amazing through a large diaphragm condenser, whilst another will sound amazing through a dynamic. Even the same voice can benefit from different mics on different songs, this is where the shoot out can really help.
The same can be said for everything else captured during the recording process and in fact during the mix too, checking different mix options can make a world of difference.
Old Habits Die Hard
It’s easy to reach for the old favourites or the workhorse we’ve begun to trust, but try and make a habit of trying different things when tracking - you may be surprised just how different the recording turns out.