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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.
In this video, I'm going to show you the steps involved in recording audio into Pro Tools. I'll start from the very beginning, as if I'm coming to Pro Tools with a brand-new song idea. We need to create a new session and I'll choose WAVE files, 24-Bit bit depth and 96 Kilohertz sampling rate. Save it to the Desktop. Usually, I would save this to an external hard drive, but the Desktop is fine here. We'll take a look at the Edit window instead of the Mix window, and of course, the first step is to create a new track.
Now since I'm going to be recording an acoustic guitar, I'm going to choose 1, new, Mono, Audio Track. Once I've created my track, I'm going to actually plug in my instrument into the back of the 003 into the Line Input. Now if you're recording with a microphone, obviously go into the Mic Input here. The next step is to choose proper input on the 003 itself. So I'm going to hit the Mic/DI button. That tells Pro Tools where the signal is coming in on.
So now we go back to Pro Tools and we check the input and output on the track. You see here that it's set to the interface > Analog 1. That's where I've plugged in my guitar. So that's what I need to set here in Pro Tools. The output is set to the main outputs, Analog 1 and 2. If you don't see this I/O section, go up to the View menu and choose Edit Window Views > I/O. Next, I want to check our hardware buffer size. So I'll go to the Setup > Playback Engine window and choose the Hardware Buffer Size. In this case I want to choose the smallest number of samples that I can to reduce the latency.
Those of you recording into a USB- powered interface, like an Mbox 2, should turn the Mix knob all the way to the left, to the input side to achieve 0 latency monitoring. On some M-Audio USB devices, like the MobilePre, this Mix control is software-driven. In this case, go to Setup > Hardware and click on the Launch Setup App button to adjust the Mix level. Pro Tools users with FireWire devices, like the 003, like what I'm using here, can actually choose Low Latency Monitoring from the Options menu. This will reduce the latency to the least amount that you can possibly have using one of these types of interfaces. I'll cover latency in another video in this course.
The next step is to choose the monitoring mode. We choose that from the Track menu and there are two options. There is Input Only and Auto Input Monitoring. The one that you see here is not the one that is active. It's a little confusing, but if we choose this one now, Auto Input Monitoring will be active. But we actually want Input Only Monitoring, so we'll choose this and it will be active. I'll talk about monitoring modes in another video in this course. So we're almost there. We're almost ready to record. The next step is to actually record-enable the track. So we hit the Record button. Now it's time to adjust the input level. So we need to set our recording level and that means that you need to start playing or singing into the microphone and seeing how loud your signal is.
(Music playing.) Now that's a pretty good level. We don't want to peak it out, but we don't want it to be too soft. If you need to, adjust the Gain knob for the input for that track on your interface. Before you actually record the track, let's name the track, so that it's not called Audio 1. We'll call it acoustic guitar. That way, this file will actually be called Ac Gtr on your hard drive and not Audio 1.
It's important to do that so that you don't have a million Audio 1 files on your hard drive. So the last step now is to actually record. So let's go over to the Record button and hit Play and you are in. (Music playing.) Hit the Stop button and there is your track. Now this may seem like a lot of steps just to start recording. However, these steps will become second nature to you very quickly, and you'll be able to record into Pro Tools within just a minute of launching the program.
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