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Using the Trimmer and Scrubber tools

From: Pro Tools 9 Essential Training

Video: Using the Trimmer and Scrubber tools

In this video, I'm going to cover what the Trimmer and Scrubber edit tools do. I'll start with the trimmer. This is the trimmer here, and if you click on it, right-click it, or click and hold, you'll see that it comes in four different flavors: Standard, TCE, Scrub, and Loop. The scrub trimmer is only a feature for Pro Tools HD and Pro Tools with the Complete Production Toolkit 2. You can also press F6 to scroll through these different Trim tools, and let's start with the Standard Trim tool. The trimmer's main function is to shorten or expand a region or a loop.

Using the Trimmer and Scrubber tools

In this video, I'm going to cover what the Trimmer and Scrubber edit tools do. I'll start with the trimmer. This is the trimmer here, and if you click on it, right-click it, or click and hold, you'll see that it comes in four different flavors: Standard, TCE, Scrub, and Loop. The scrub trimmer is only a feature for Pro Tools HD and Pro Tools with the Complete Production Toolkit 2. You can also press F6 to scroll through these different Trim tools, and let's start with the Standard Trim tool. The trimmer's main function is to shorten or expand a region or a loop.

If I bring it down here, and click and drag, I can shorten this or extend it. If you press Option on a Mac, or Alt in Windows, you can reverse the direction of the Trimmer tool. So see the Trimmer tool reversing right there. And then if I click, it'll chop the region like that. You can also use the trimmer to lengthen and shorten MIDI notes. So let's take a look at this one and expand the length of that MIDI note. You can also use the trimmer to scale automation and controller data.

So first, I'm going to go to the selector, I'm going to select this area of the volume automation on this track, I'll go back to the trimmer, and I'll click and drag. You'll see what's going on here. You see the number -12.1 db. That means the volume that this has gone down to, and then you'll see the delta, or the difference, which is that little triangle, and that says -10.9 db. So that means that this overall has been scaled down -10.9 db.

Now let's check out the time trimmer, or the TCE trimmer. The time trimmer uses the Time Shift AudioSuite plug-in to alter the length of an audio region and create a new audio file. You can use it to time compress or expand a region, and this is useful for matching the length of another region, for aligning a region to a tempo grid, or for just a special effect. Let's try it out. I'm going to compress this piano region and we'll take a listen to it. (Music playing.) So, you can hear that it's a lot faster now, and there are few little artifacts in there, but it sounds kind of neat.

One thing you should know when you use the TCE Trimmer tool is that this creates a brand-new audio file. So, what I would recommend doing before you actually process a track like this is you should go and create a duplicate playlist, so then you can always have the original playlist underneath, and you can always access the unaltered version. Now, we can choose the default settings for the Time Shift plug-in or change the default plug-in to a different time compression or expansion plug-in, and we do that up here, in the Setup > Preferences, and the Processing page.

You can see there are few plug-ins that we can choose from. Time Shift is the default. If you have X-Form, you might want to choose that; that might be a little higher quality than Time Shift, but Time Shift is definitely a better choice than the old Digidesign TC/E plug-in. Now obviously, if you have any of these third-party ones, you can choose those too. You can also set the default settings and look at that: we have a piano setting if we want it. Usually the default, which is the Stereo Mix Default, is probably the best choice for your overall TC/E needs.

So, I'm going to cancel out of this. Now, we can create our own TCE settings, if we go to AudioSuite > Pitch Shift > Time Shift, and this is actually the Time Shift plug-in that will be doing the processing for our TCE Trimmer tool. You can create your own settings here and then save them, and I'm going to talk about using this in another video. Let's move on to the loop trimmer. With the loop trimmer, if you position the cursor over the top half of a region, the loop trimmer comes out.

If you bring it down to the bottom half of the region, the standard trimmer will be there. So, if you click and drag with the loop trimmer, you create multiple loops of the trimmed region, and you can see that those are created with this little icon that's down here. Finally, we have the scrub trimmer, and this feature is only available in Pro Tools HD and Pro Tools systems with the Complete Production Toolkit. What this lets you do is trim and scrub at the same time-- that is, you can listen to the audio as you trim the region.

(Music playing.) And from the scrub trimmer, this is a perfect segue into using the Scrubber tool. Let's go up and click that. Now, scrubbing is a technique used in analog tape editing, where an engineer rolls the tape back and forth over the playhead at slow speeds with his or her hands, to find a particular location on the tape, usually the location for a splice. The purpose of the scrubber in Pro Tools is to emulate the scrubbing process on digital audio.

By scrubbing over an edit point, you can find the exact edit point, which may not be obvious just by looking at the waveform. To access the Scrubber tool, obviously can just click on it, or you can press F9, and let's go down here and scrub. (Music playing.) So obviously, you can go backwards and forwards, and if you scrub over the middle of a stereo track, you can hear both sides. (Music playing.) But if you scrub over just one half of it, you'll only hear that side.

Now, let's zoom in really close, and go back to the scrubber. (Music playing.) When you zoom in close, the scrubber will only scrub just a small little piece of the audio, and so usually you'll hear the pitch go down, and you'll hear just a little bit of the audio. If we zoom back out by double-clicking the Zoomer tool, I can actually simulate zooming in with the scrubber, by hitting the Command key on a Mac, or Control in Windows, and this will allow me to scrub at a finer resolution without zooming.

(Music playing.) If you want to scrub at speeds faster than regular speed, you can press the Option key on a Mac, or Alt in Windows, while you're dragging, and you'll see the cursor change its icon slightly. (Music playing.) This is called Scrub/Shuttle mode. You use the Scrub/Shuttle mode to scroll through a long track to find a specific part of that track.

Aside from being able to scrub audio, you can also scrub MIDI. So if I go up to this instrument track, I can scrub on this Mini Grand track. (Music playing.) Let's say you're using the Selector tool, and you want to scrub something. Well, if you take the selector into the middle of a region, and you press Control on a Mac, or Start on PC, you'll see that the selector will change to a scrubber.

(Music playing.) You can also access Scrub/Shuttle mode, if you press Control+Option on a Mac, or Start+Alt on a PC. We'll come down to this audio track. I'm going to press Control+Option. (Music playing.) So, there're a few useful key commands that you can use to access the scrubber from the Selector tool.

Now, I find the scrubber to be my least used editing tool, but the features it does offer are cool and helpful from time to time. On the other hand, I use the trimmer all the time to edit regions, and I imagine you will too, once you get the hang of using all its features.

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This video is part of

Image for Pro Tools 9 Essential Training
Pro Tools 9 Essential Training

106 video lessons · 11530 viewers

David Franz
Author

 
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  1. 13m 13s
    1. Welcome
      1m 16s
    2. Exploring the different versions of Pro Tools
      2m 30s
    3. Optimizing your computer before installing Pro Tools
      4m 6s
    4. Troubleshooting
      2m 18s
    5. Using the exercise files
      3m 3s
  2. 31m 3s
    1. Installing and authorizing Pro Tools
      1m 50s
    2. Connecting your Pro Tools system
      4m 1s
    3. Powering up and powering down
      58s
    4. Choosing the Playback Engine and Hardware settings
      4m 13s
    5. Optimizing Pro Tools performance
      5m 52s
    6. Utilizing Automatic Delay Compensation (ADC)
      1m 38s
    7. Setting essential preferences
      2m 35s
    8. Creating a Pro Tools session
      3m 43s
    9. Identifying elements in a session folder
      2m 33s
    10. Creating new tracks
      3m 40s
  3. 42m 9s
    1. Exploring the Edit window
      6m 52s
    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 36s
    5. Investigating the menus
      3m 13s
    6. Understanding samples and ticks
      3m 34s
    7. Viewing and manipulating tracks
      4m 31s
    8. Selecting inputs, outputs, and buses
      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 19s
  4. 19m 31s
    1. Using DigiBase and the Workspace browser
      4m 22s
    2. Importing audio
      3m 1s
    3. Importing MIDI
      2m 46s
    4. Importing session data
      3m 44s
    5. Importing tracks from a CD
      2m 44s
    6. Importing video
      2m 54s
  5. 1h 0m
    1. Recording audio
      6m 14s
    2. Playing back audio
      10m 0s
    3. Creating a click track
      5m 25s
    4. Overdubbing and using the record modes
      8m 29s
    5. Recording with playlists and Loop Record
      4m 3s
    6. Punch recording and using the monitoring modes
      4m 17s
    7. Dealing with latency and ADC
      4m 58s
    8. Creating a group
      4m 52s
    9. Adding effects while recording
      5m 17s
    10. Creating a headphone (cue) mix
      4m 29s
    11. Assigning disk allocation
      2m 17s
  6. 1h 19m
    1. Understanding nondestructive editing and region types
      3m 3s
    2. Using the Selector and Grabber tools
      3m 29s
    3. Using the Trimmer and Scrubber tools
      8m 16s
    4. Using the Zoomer tool and Zoom presets
      5m 41s
    5. Using the Pencil tool
      2m 46s
    6. Using the Smart tool
      1m 28s
    7. Understanding the Edit modes
      5m 9s
    8. Arranging regions
      5m 33s
    9. Undoing an edit
      2m 8s
    10. Utilizing fades and crossfades
      7m 22s
    11. Building a comp track using playlists
      4m 50s
    12. Locking and muting regions
      2m 52s
    13. Special Edit window buttons
      6m 47s
    14. Creating an audio loop
      4m 13s
    15. Editing a voiceover
      8m 37s
    16. Using Elastic Time and Elastic Pitch
      7m 38s
  7. 19m 27s
    1. Working with region groups
      6m 39s
    2. Using time, tempo, meter, key, and chord
      5m 37s
    3. Creating memory locations
      7m 11s
  8. 30m 47s
    1. Setting up MIDI on a Mac
      4m 7s
    2. Setting up MIDI on a PC
      2m 13s
    3. Setting up MIDI in Pro Tools
      2m 37s
    4. Recording MIDI data
      3m 7s
    5. Recording multiple MIDI tracks with one virtual instrument
      2m 17s
    6. Recording options for MIDI
      5m 44s
    7. Using step input
      4m 14s
    8. Making a drum loop with MIDI Merge
      3m 36s
    9. Composing with virtual instruments
      2m 52s
  9. 54m 25s
    1. Using the edit tools for editing MIDI data
      9m 47s
    2. Editing MIDI data in the MIDI Editor
      8m 17s
    3. Working with the MIDI event list
      2m 13s
    4. Editing MIDI data with event operations
      8m 35s
    5. Quantizing MIDI tracks
      12m 16s
    6. Creating and using groove templates
      5m 35s
    7. Utilizing real-time properties
      3m 49s
    8. Using MIDI Learn
      3m 53s
  10. 17m 44s
    1. Exploring the Score Editor
      5m 56s
    2. Using the Score Editor
      5m 11s
    3. Setting up a score
      4m 48s
    4. Printing and exporting a score
      1m 49s
  11. 25m 45s
    1. Writing and editing automation
      7m 21s
    2. Drawing automation with the Pencil tool
      3m 58s
    3. Editing automation with the Trimmer and Grabber tools
      2m 26s
    4. Cutting, copying, pasting, and clearing automation
      4m 2s
    5. Turning automation on and off
      4m 0s
    6. Automating plug-ins and virtual instruments
      3m 58s
  12. 1h 33m
    1. Setting up a session for mixing
      7m 53s
    2. Setting up an effects loop
      9m 30s
    3. Working with plug-ins
      4m 33s
    4. Utilizing ADC while mixing
      9m 11s
    5. Applying EQ
      9m 25s
    6. Adding compression and limiting
      13m 27s
    7. Adding depth effects: Delay and reverb
      12m 45s
    8. Applying AudioSuite plug-ins
      4m 14s
    9. Bouncing down a mix and making an MP3
      5m 44s
    10. Setting up a session for mastering
      4m 36s
    11. Mastering a session
      7m 35s
    12. Bouncing down master recordings with Dither and Noise Shaping
      4m 52s
  13. 10m 6s
    1. Importing and displaying video files
      2m 42s
    2. Adding music, foley, ADR, and FX
      4m 32s
    3. Bouncing down video and audio together
      2m 52s
  14. 4m 22s
    1. Archiving an entire session
      4m 22s
  15. 52s
    1. Further Recommendations
      52s

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