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Pro Tools 8 Essential Training unveils the inner workings of the industry-standard software for music and post-production. Musician, producer, and educator David Franz demonstrates all the concepts and techniques necessary for recording, editing, mixing, and mastering in Pro Tools 8. He teaches how to create music with virtual instruments and plug-ins, edit with elastic audio for time and pitch manipulation, create a musical score, and mix with effects loops. This course can help any music producer, sound engineer, or hobbyist become proficient in Pro Tools 8. Exercise files accompany the course.
There is very little that you can't do while editing audio on Pro Tools. Here we'll talk about some of the most basic editing tasks, Separating, cutting, copying, pasting, clearing, duplicating, moving, and nudging audio regions. First, let's talk about separating an audio region. Separating means to chop a region into two pieces or to create a separate region within a region. Let me show you how to do it. I have got the Selector tool here, and I'm going to go onto Grid mode.
If I drop the Selector just like click right there and then I hit Edit > Separate Region > At Selection. You also can also use the key command, Command+E on a Mac or Ctrl+E on Windows. When I click that, it separates this one region into two. If I click-and-drag with the Selector to select an area in the region, I can also do the same, and create a new region that way.
You'll probably want to get use to using the keyboard commands for this action, because you will be separating a lot of regions in Pro Tools while you are editing. Let's move on to cutting, copying, pasting, and clearing. Now, these actions are just like in any other software program except that here, we are working with Audio and MIDI regions. Let's go to the Edit menu. We can choose Cut, Copy, Paste, and Clear. In this case, I'll choose Cut. You'll see both this MIDI region and this Audio region have now disappeared.
Go back up here, I can paste them back in. So you can see it's just like using any other software program. Notice the keyboard commands here, Command+X, Command+C, Command+V and Command+B for their respective commands here. On a PC, it's Ctrl+X, Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V, and Ctrl+B, pretty standard stuff. Now, I want to talk about Master Views for a second here. On an audio track, the Waveform View which we can access here on the Track View menu, as well as the Blocks View and when I go back to Waveform, those two views are called Master Views.
If you edit a region in one of those two views, the edits apply to all the data on that track, including automation. For example, I'm going to show you right here, I'm going to clear this region, and you will see down here in the volume automation that the volume automation data that's there will also be cleared. Now, you see the straight line here. All this automation data has been erased. As well as the regions that use to exist here. I'm going to go ahead and undo that, and you'll see the automation also reappear here.
Now this is different if I just click-and-drag down here in the volume automation playlist and I go to erase that by clearing it. I can clear that without clearing the Audio or the MIDI on these tracks. So the Master Views on an audio track are Waveform and Blocks. And on a MIDI track, they are Regions, Notes and Blocks. So any edits you do to the Regions, Notes, or Blocks view on a MIDI track will affect all of this other automation and controller data.
One more word about automation in addition to the Cut, Copy, Paste and Clear commands we have up here. There is also Cut Special, Copy Special, Paste Special, and Clear Special. Now these are actually helpful when editing automation playlists, like volume, mute, and pan, and MIDI controller data. We'll actually cover those in a later video about editing automation. So let's get back to editing audio regions now. To move a region in time, the easiest way is to use the Time Grabber tool.
Click on the Grabber and choose Time. That gives the Time Grabber tool. We also should be aware of the Edit mode that we want to choose. Right now, I have got it on Grid, so that anything that I move here will be moved in intervals of the grid. So you can see it hopped from one grid value to the next. I am going to undo that. If we use Slip, we can move this without being tied to the Grid, and Shuffle, if we grab a region and move it, it will place it either before or in between regions, and then slide the regions around it accordingly.
So that just flip-flop these two regions right here. In Spot mode if I try to move it, we'll get the Spot dialog and there you can type-in where you want the region to be moved to. Now, let's try to nudge a region. This is a great feature if you want to line up a straight base note with a kick drum note for a solid downbeat, or in this case, I'm going to align the downbeat of a Sitar track with the Piano.
First, I'm going to zoom-in, go to Slip mode, and you can see right here that this downbeat is a little bit late. I want to line it up with the grid right here. So I have already created a new region for this area that I want to nudge. So I'm going to go up to the Nudge menu right here and choose my Nudge value and you can do it with time or you can use Bars and Beats, do certain Note values, or even number of samples.
Now, I personally like to use 10 milliseconds as my default Nudge value. It's not too much, but it's not too little. So now I'm going to go and use the Grabber tool to select the area that I want to nudge, and on the numerical keypad, you hit plus to move the piece of audio forward or minus to move it back. Now, on a laptop computer, you may need to use the Function key or another modifier to access the numerical keypad functions on your laptop keyboard.
In fact, some of the new Mac laptops don't even have the numerical keypad on them. In that case, you'll have to hook up a separate keyboard to your laptop to use the Nudge function. So in this case, I'm going to hit the Minus key and bring this whole region back, so that this particular note is hitting right on the downbeat, bar 27. Now, if you want to get really fancy, you can nudge while pressing the Start key in Windows, or the Ctrl key in Mac. You can actually nudge the contents of a region without changing the region's start and end points. Let me show you how to do this.
So I have got the Ctrl button down on my Mac. I'm going to hit the Plus key and the Minus key to move the region back and forth without moving the beginning of this region. Now, if we were doing regular nudging, and I hit the Minus or Plus key, you'd see the region start point moving. But I actually like using the Ctrl key to do this Nudge where the start of the region stays where it is. Now, this only works if there is audio material on the outside of the region over on this side or on the backside. Now, one thing I want to mention about nudging is that you should be careful using this technique, because you can kind of go crazy trying to align every single note, killing way too much time while you are editing and taking away from the real performance of the part.
My suggestion is if the part needs that much fixing where you are nudging all these notes, you might want to consider rerecording it. So as you can see here in this video, editing audio in Pro Tools using these commands is pretty straightforward and you can apply your knowledge of almost any other software program you know to the intuitive editing techniques here.
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