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Optimizing your computer before installing Pro Tools

From: Pro Tools 10 Essential Training

Video: Optimizing your computer before installing Pro Tools

The first step in having a successful Pro Tools experience happens before you even install Pro Tools on your computer. Before installing Pro Tools, check to make sure that your computer meets the requirements to run Pro Tools. Go to the avid.com site and choose Support & Services. I've chosen in here, this is the page. Now on the right side, under Pro Tools Support choose Knowledgebase. Use this site to check that your computer specs, operating system, hard drive, audio interfaces, MIDI interfaces, plug -ins, and third-party devices are all compatible with Pro Tools 10.

Optimizing your computer before installing Pro Tools

The first step in having a successful Pro Tools experience happens before you even install Pro Tools on your computer. Before installing Pro Tools, check to make sure that your computer meets the requirements to run Pro Tools. Go to the avid.com site and choose Support & Services. I've chosen in here, this is the page. Now on the right side, under Pro Tools Support choose Knowledgebase. Use this site to check that your computer specs, operating system, hard drive, audio interfaces, MIDI interfaces, plug -ins, and third-party devices are all compatible with Pro Tools 10.

The biggest issues I've seen as a Pro Tools instructor involve incompatibility, and I absolutely recommend checking out this site before purchasing any additional hardware or software that you plan on using with Pro Tools, especially if you're buying a new computer. So let's look at where you want to find information on compatibility. If you scroll down this menu right here, you can see Compatibility. If we choose that and then hit Search, we'll see a whole list of system requirements, approved devices, and more. Let's click on the Pro Tools 10 System Requirements.

On this page, you can check to make sure that you're running a compatible version of your computer's operating system, as well as having the total system RAM necessary and an Avid-qualified computer. Minor version differences between the OS and Pro Tools can be all the difference between whether Pro Tools can run on your computer or not. Be sure to check this site often, as it will get updated as new hardware and software become available. Before installing Pro Tools, there are a few things that you can optimize on your computer to make sure that it runs really smoothly with Pro Tools.

On a Mac, you should turn off the Software Update. You don't want the operating system to update automatically to a version that's not compatible with Pro Tools. You should turn off the Energy Saver setting so that your computer and Pro Tools never go to sleep. Also, Pro Tools uses some keyboard shortcuts that are automatically assigned to the Mac operating system. So I recommend disabling or reassigning those shortcuts so that Pro Tools can use them. I would also disable Spotlight Indexing and Time Machine so that those processes aren't automatically running in the background because they can reduce the performance of Pro Tools.

I'd also enable Journaling which can yield higher performance from your hard drives. The specific steps on how to do these actions are listed in the Pro Tools installation instructions. Note that some of these steps may change as the Mac OS gets updated. To optimize a Windows system for Pro Tools, you should disable the User Account control and configure the system standby and power management settings to get the higher performance setting. You can also adjust the processor scheduling and disable Startup items to achieve even better performance.

The specific steps on how to do these actions are also listed in the Pro Tools installation instructions. Note that some of these steps may change as the Windows OS gets updated. Here are few more recommended optimizations that are applicable to both Mac and Windows systems. You should turn off any program that runs in the background. You should quit any program that's unneeded while running Pro Tools. And turn off any unused FireWire devices and nonessential USB devices. There may also be a few more that are listed on avid.com, so you should check their site for the latest info.

Now let's talk about hard drives. Here's a list of approved hard drives to use with Pro Tools. Avid strongly advises not to record audio to the internal system hard drive on your computer. That will reduce the performance of Pro Tools and can also interfere with the performance of your computer in general, not just with Pro Tools. Mixing hard drive types in your setup can cause performance issues. And SSD drives are not yet tested or qualified to use with Pro Tools at the time of this course's release.

Although it's likely that they will in fact be qualified soon. Again, check the compatibility page on Avid's site for the latest recommendations, and set the optimizations as shown here to get the best performance from your Pro Tools system.

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This video is part of

Image for Pro Tools 10 Essential Training
Pro Tools 10 Essential Training

108 video lessons · 15254 viewers

David Franz
Author

 
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  1. 13m 44s
    1. Welcome
      1m 20s
    2. Exploring the different versions of Pro Tools
      3m 22s
    3. Optimizing your computer before installing Pro Tools
      4m 18s
    4. Troubleshooting
      2m 19s
    5. Using the exercise files
      2m 25s
  2. 36m 55s
    1. Installing and authorizing Pro Tools
      1m 49s
    2. Connecting your Pro Tools system
      4m 31s
    3. Powering up and powering down
      58s
    4. Choosing the Playback Engine and Hardware settings
      5m 55s
    5. Optimizing Pro Tools' performance
      6m 26s
    6. Utilizing Automatic Delay Compensation (ADC)
      3m 36s
    7. Setting essential preferences
      2m 35s
    8. Creating a Pro Tools session
      4m 31s
    9. Identifying elements in a session folder
      2m 36s
    10. Creating new tracks
      3m 58s
  3. 42m 5s
    1. Exploring the Edit window
      6m 44s
    2. Exploring the Mix window
      3m 11s
    3. Exploring the Transport and Big Counter windows
      2m 57s
    4. Using the Color palette and window arrangements
      2m 35s
    5. Investigating the menus
      3m 22s
    6. Understanding samples and ticks
      3m 34s
    7. Viewing and manipulating tracks
      4m 31s
    8. Selecting inputs, outputs, and busses
      3m 58s
    9. Selecting an I/O settings file
      4m 12s
    10. Understanding signal paths and gain stages
      3m 46s
    11. Utilizing keyboard shortcuts and Keyboard Focus
      3m 15s
  4. 21m 11s
    1. Using DigiBase and the Workspace browser
      4m 14s
    2. Importing audio
      3m 0s
    3. Importing MIDI
      2m 48s
    4. Importing session data
      5m 34s
    5. Importing tracks from a CD
      2m 51s
    6. Importing video
      2m 44s
  5. 56m 46s
    1. Recording audio
      6m 13s
    2. Playing back audio and Edit window scrolling
      4m 52s
    3. Creating a click track
      5m 24s
    4. Overdubbing and using the record modes
      8m 52s
    5. Recording with playlists and Loop Record
      4m 6s
    6. Punch recording and using the monitoring modes
      4m 14s
    7. Dealing with latency and ADC
      4m 58s
    8. Creating a group
      6m 5s
    9. Adding effects while recording
      5m 16s
    10. Creating a headphone (cue) mix
      4m 29s
    11. Assigning disk allocation
      2m 17s
  6. 1h 28m
    1. Understanding nondestructive editing and region types
      3m 19s
    2. Using the Selector and Grabber tools
      3m 37s
    3. Using the Trim and Scrubber tools
      7m 5s
    4. Using the Zoomer tool and zoom presets
      5m 51s
    5. Using the Pencil tool
      3m 10s
    6. Using the Smart tool
      1m 27s
    7. Understanding the Edit modes
      5m 51s
    8. Arranging clips
      6m 40s
    9. Undoing an edit
      2m 44s
    10. Utilizing fades and crossfades
      9m 41s
    11. Building a comp track using playlists
      5m 17s
    12. Locking and muting clips
      2m 48s
    13. Special Edit window buttons
      7m 15s
    14. Creating an audio loop
      5m 19s
    15. Editing a voiceover
      9m 41s
    16. Using Elastic Time and Elastic Pitch
      9m 12s
  7. 17m 21s
    1. Working with clip groups
      4m 33s
    2. Using time, tempo, meter, key, and chord
      5m 37s
    3. Creating memory locations
      7m 11s
  8. 33m 10s
    1. Setting up MIDI on a Mac
      4m 17s
    2. Setting up MIDI on a PC
      2m 14s
    3. Setting up MIDI in Pro Tools
      2m 44s
    4. Recording MIDI data
      3m 14s
    5. Recording multiple MIDI tracks with one virtual instrument
      2m 17s
    6. Recording options for MIDI
      6m 21s
    7. Using Step Input
      4m 35s
    8. Making a drum loop with MIDI Merge
      3m 36s
    9. Composing with virtual instruments
      3m 52s
  9. 57m 1s
    1. Using the edit tools for editing MIDI data
      10m 0s
    2. Editing MIDI data in the MIDI Editor
      7m 31s
    3. Working with the MIDI Event List
      2m 12s
    4. Editing MIDI data with Event Operations
      8m 33s
    5. Quantizing MIDI tracks
      12m 16s
    6. Creating and using Groove Templates
      5m 35s
    7. Utilizing real-time properties
      5m 50s
    8. Using MIDI Learn
      5m 4s
  10. 17m 30s
    1. Exploring the Score Editor
      5m 49s
    2. Using the Score Editor
      5m 5s
    3. Setting up a score
      4m 48s
    4. Printing and exporting a score
      1m 48s
  11. 25m 39s
    1. Writing and editing automation
      6m 40s
    2. Drawing automation with the Pencil tool
      4m 2s
    3. Editing automation with the Trim and Grabber tools
      2m 58s
    4. Cutting, copying, pasting, and clearing automation
      4m 12s
    5. Turning automation on and off
      3m 52s
    6. Automating plug-ins and virtual instruments
      3m 55s
  12. 1h 49m
    1. Setting up a session for mixing
      8m 50s
    2. Setting up an effects loop
      9m 30s
    3. Working with plug-ins
      4m 33s
    4. Utilizing ADC while mixing
      9m 8s
    5. Applying EQ
      12m 43s
    6. Adding compression and limiting
      14m 25s
    7. Using delay effects
      6m 52s
    8. Applying AudioSuite plug-ins
      6m 24s
    9. Adding reverb to your mix
      6m 50s
    10. Bouncing down a mix
      4m 15s
    11. Making an MP3 for iTunes and SoundCloud
      2m 53s
    12. Setting up a session for mastering
      4m 58s
    13. Mastering a session
      10m 37s
    14. Bouncing down master recordings with Dither and Noise Shaping
      7m 24s
  13. 9m 59s
    1. Importing and displaying video files
      2m 38s
    2. Adding music, foley, ADR, and FX
      4m 29s
    3. Bouncing down video and audio together
      2m 52s
  14. 4m 0s
    1. Archiving an entire session
      4m 0s
  15. 58s
    1. Further recommendations
      58s

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