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Pro Tools Session Secrets. Professional Recipes for High Octane Results. Pro Tools 7 Session Secrets. Chapter 1 Recording. Pro Tools Recording techniques in this chapter include:. Recording Preparation The Headphone Mix The Click Punch Techniques Recording Drums

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pro tools session secrets

Pro Tools Session Secrets

Professional Recipes for High Octane Results

pro tools 7 session secrets
Pro Tools 7 Session Secrets
  • Chapter 1 Recording
pro tools recording techniques in this chapter include
Pro Tools Recording techniques in this chapter include:
  • Recording Preparation
  • The Headphone Mix
  • The Click
  • Punch Techniques
  • Recording Drums
  • Recording Acoustic Guitar
  • Recording Electric Guitar
  • Voice Recording
recording preparation
Recording Preparation
  • I/O Setup is the logical configuration of your Pro Tools inputs and outputs to reflect your hardware I/O.
  • Preconfigure your I/O setup before the band shows up to set up control room and headphone mixes.
  • You can label inputs, outputs, buses and inserts.
  • Plug a guitar into input 1 on the back of an 002 and after selecting the Input tab in the I/O setup window label input 1 Guitar. In the Edit or Mix window choose Audio Input Path Selector / Interface and you will see the named input. Use this method for all of your inputs and instruments.
  • I/O Setups can be saved, imported and exported. This allows you to easily bring in pre-made I/O settings to any session greatly reducing the amount of set up time needed per track.
the headphone mix
The Headphone Mix
  • If the band isn’t comfortable with what they hear the performance will suffer.
  • An 8 channel audio interface will give you 3 stereo HP mixes (outputs 3/4-5/6-7/8) if you are only using the first two outputs (1/2 ) to monitor your track.
  • To do three separate mixes you will need 3 separate HP distribution amps to feed the signals or an HP matrix amp.
  • You need three Sends per track to send each track to the different mixes.
  • Each Send can have a different level creating the different mixes.
the click
The Click
  • Recording to the Click enables Grid based editing.
  • The Click follows the tempo map in Pro Tools whether in Manual or Conductor Mode, regardless of static or dynamic tempo. The Click also follows Meter and Meter changes.
  • The Click can get its sound from the Pro Tools insert or can be assigned to a virtual keyboard or an external MIDI device.
  • The Click can be configured to play during recording only, count-off only or recording and playback.
  • Toggle the Click on and off with 7 on the numeric keypad.
punch techniques
Punch Techniques
  • Never ruin a track with automated punching.
  • Select the part you need to overdub using any selection technique you are comfortable with. The tighter the selection the better the punch .The Punch records for the length of the selection and then punches out automatically.
  • Set up Pre and Post Roll to satisfy your vocalist or musician. Pre and Post Roll can be set on the Transport Bar.
  • Configure your recording Input mode: Auto Input Monitoring or Input Only Monitoring. Pro Tools 7 defaults to Auto Input Monitoring. These modes determine if you will hear the existing track played back before recording.
  • Auto Input Mode is the most common and allows the vocalist or musician to monitor their previously recorded part until the punch spot and then start the new recording.
recording drums
Recording Drums
  • Roomy sounding drums have a bigger, open sound often using overheads to provide most of the sound and less mics overall.
  • Tight closed drums use more mics on the individual drums to isolate the sound for processing in Pro Tools. This gives a more specific sound for each drum with less bleed.
  • Phase considerations are crucial in drum recording. The 3 to 1 rule says that the distance between two mics should be at least three times the distance between each mic and the sound source
  • Listen to your mics for Phase issues.
recording electric guitar
Recording Electric Guitar
  • Tuning matters!
  • Choose an amp for its sound not its size.
  • Place the mic as close to the grill as possible. Point the cardioids patterned mic at the outer portion of the speaker. Angle it towards the cone to brighten the tone.
  • For a more complex sound add a second mic from 5 to 8” away. Check the phase.
recording acoustic guitar
Recording Acoustic Guitar
  • The instrument and tuning set the bar for how good the recording can be.
  • For an intimate sound point a cardioid's condenser about 6 to 10 “ in front of the sound hole at the 12th fret or where the body meets the neck. Small movements in the mic greatly effect the sound.
  • For a bigger sound add a second mic pointed at the body of the guitar from above the shoulder of the guitarist. Listen as you point the mic and heed the phase rules!
  • Stereo recording should employ two of the same small diaphragm mics angled 90* from each other pointed at the 12th fret and 7 to 12 “ away.
recording vocals
Recording Vocals
  • Condenser mics are the usual choice for vocals but they don’t always have to be. Condenser mics are more sensitive than dynamic mic so they have more detail to their recordings. Dynamic mics can take more abuse and SPL in general and have a certain tone that is desirable for some applications.
  • Know your polar patterns. Polar Patterns determine the shape of the pickup pattern for the mic. Omni, cardioid and figure 8’ patterns all focus on the sound differently.
  • Pre-amps drive condenser mics, which need to be powered, to a usable level and depending on the pre-amp can be tube or solid state giving different tone to the vocals or instruments you pass through it. Good pre-amps can be expensive but are treasured for the sound that can be produced.
  • Phantom Power: condenser mics need to be powered and most pre-amps come with built in 48 v phantom power to do the job. Dynamic mics don’t need phantom power. Phantom power travels through the mic cable to get to your mic.
recording vocals12
Recording Vocals
  • The Room you are in can play a large part in the quality of the sound you capture. Even small acoustical improvements can help. Auralex is a common solution for improving your acoustics.
  • Reverb, compression and EQ are a vital part of any vocal recording. You will get some reverb from the room you record in plus have the ability to add more with plug-ins later. Views on recording with compression differ but remember you can always compress later but you can’t remove what you track to Pro Tools with. Most vocal track are compressed at some point. The same is true for EQ. It plays a big part in getting that perfect sound out of your vocals but if you track with EQ you can’t remove it.