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Pro Tools 9 Essential Training with musician and producer David Franz demonstrates concepts and techniques necessary for recording, editing, mixing, and mastering in the industry-standard software for music and post-production. The course covers creating music with virtual instruments and plugins, editing with elastic audio for time and pitch manipulation, creating a musical score, and mixing with effects loops. Exercise files accompany the course.
Importing files into an existing Pro Tools session is a feature that many use on a regular basis. Whether it's to import a drum loop or find that perfect sound effect for a scene, Pro Tools enables you to import a wide variety of files using DigiBase and the Workspace browsers. Now, DigiBase is Pro Tools built-in file management database program, consisting of two main browsers: the Workspace browser and the Project browser. We can get to those from the Window menu. These browsers enable you to search your computer and attached hard drives for any file that you'd like to import into a Pro Tools session.
The Project browser looks into the current session's folder, regardless of where the session's associated files are located. So anything associated with this particular session we can see in this Project browser. Now, there are no associated files except for this session, so we don't see anything else here, but you would if there were more associated files with this session. Let's go take a look at the Workspace browser. Now the Workspace browser looks into every hard drive that's attached to your system. Let's do a search. I am going to go up to the magnifying glass here.
So now we have the Search field, and I am going to type in "techno drums," and do a search for some drum loops. And you will see that it might take a few minutes for you to find all of the loops, but now you can see that the search is complete. So we will go down here and look at what we've got. We've got a number of drum loop files, and we can see this is a WAV file, an audio file, and this is the size of it, 1.2 megabytes, and the waveform is shown, and we can tell how long it is.
It's exactly four bars, which is related to this tempo that it conveniently shows at the beginning of it, 138. We can click on this button right here to hear the loop. (Drums playing.) We have some options for auditioning the loop, and they are all checked off right now. So we have Loop Preview, which will loop the whole file. Auto Preview means that if we click the name of the file, it will start playing. (Drums playing.) So we don't actually have to hit the speaker; we could actually hit the name of the file. And Spacebar Toggles File Preview, so we can use the Spacebar to press Play and Stop for that particular loop.
So the easiest way to get the loop into Pro Tools is to simply (Drums playing.) drag and drop it, and there we go. Let's check it out in Pro Tools. (Drums playing.) Now, you'll notice that it's playing back at the same tempo that it was in the browser window, and that's at 138. However, this session is at 120 BPM. What happens if we actually want to bring this loop in at this session tempo? No problemo.
What we can do is click this button right here, and that is the Audio Files Conform to Session Tempo button. So now with that on, we can listen to what it sounds like at the session tempo. (Drums playing.) So you'll note that it's slower. If we turn this back off, it will go back to its original tempo. (Drums playing.) So let's put that back on, and then drag it into our session.
You'll notice now that it's exactly four bars, at our 120 beats per minute tempo. Now, if we highlight this one, it's less than four bars because it's faster than our tempo, and I will play back both of these. (Drums playing.) That's faster. (Drums playing.) That's slower, but it's in time with our tempo. Pro Tools utilizes elastic audio to convert this loop into the right tempo, and we will cover elastic audio in another video in this course.
The Workspace browser is a handy way to find files, audition them, and import them into your session. I'm sure you'll incorporate it into your workflow with Pro Tools.
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