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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.
Pro Tools enables you to expand or compress an audio region without affecting its pitch, by utilizing the Time Shift AudioSuite Plug-in. Let's try this out. I have a got a beat over here, a reggae beat that's 4 bars long. However, it was originally recorded at 95 BPM, but I want it to actually be at 92 BPM for our session here. So I can actually use the TCE Trimmer tool to expand this out to fit into our 4 bars.
But let's hear what it sounds like before I do that and then we'll able to compare what it sounds like after. (Music playing.) All right, now I'm going to expand it out, and Pro Tools will make a new file with this extension the TISH and let's check it out. (Music playing.) Well, I'm not impressed. I don't think I like the algorithm that Pro Tools chose to use on this one. So I can actually go to the Preferences page, in the Processing section and in the Time Compression Expansion section, I can choose my Default Settings and no wonder it doesn't sound very good. It was on the Default Settings for Piano. Let me take this down and choose Stereo Mix.
I'll hit OK and then I'm actually going to undo this Time Shift. Now I'm going to re-time shift it with this different preset. Let's have a listen now. (Music playing.) That's much better. Now instead of using the TC/E tool, we can actually open up Time Shift as in AudioSuite Plug-in and we can look through the different presets up here and apply them simply by highlighting the region and hitting Process or we can hit the preview to actually check it out before we process it.
While we are in this window, let's take a look at some of the parameters. We have got the Mode, Monophonic, Polyphonic, Rhythmic and Varispeed. Now Monophonic you should use on monophonic sounds like voices, single voices. Polyphonic is great on complex sounds, like a piece of music with multiple instruments playing at once. Rhythmic is great for percussive sounds like a drum loop. However, Polyphonic can even be used on drum loops possibly even better than the Rhythmic mode and Varispeed. Now this links time and pitch change and acts like how a tape machine does when you speed up or slow down the tape. So with Varispeed, the pitch and the time are linked together unlike these other three.
If we go over to the Range, we can tell Pro Tools to affect just the Low, Mids, Highs or Wide, which is all of the above, and over here we can reduce the Gain if we need to so that we don't clip anything. Down below in the Time section we have got the original which is now set to 92 BPM and that's what this region is now, 92 BPM. And if we want to change it to a different Tempo we can just click in there type in a new tempo and hit Return and Pro Tools will automatically figure out what the new speed needs to be and this is a percentage of what the Original Tempo is.
Down here in the Transient section, this section provides controls for setting the Transient Detection Threshold and for adjusting the analysis window length for processing audio. Now I wouldn't really touch this if you don't know what you are doing, so we are just going to leave this alone for now. Over in this section we have the Pitch control where we can transpose an audio region up or down two octaves and we'll come back to that in a second. Now I want to come back to this Transient section because if we switch from Polyphonic to Monophonic, this control changes to Formant. Now the Formant section enables you to shift the Formant shape of the selected audio independently of the fundamental frequency, which you change over here in the pitch. This is useful for achieving Formant correct pitch shifting or to use as an interesting effect and what's really crazy about this thing is you can use this Formant control to change the sound of a male vocal to sound more like a female vocal.
So let's try out this Pitch control. I'm going to grab this base track and drag it down here, solo the track and I'm just going to go ahead and hit Preview and then adjust the pitch control in real time. (Music playing.) Well that doesn't sound very good now, does it? Let's go to Base Polyphonic and now we'll change the pitch in real time and see if this algorithm works out better for changing the pitch on the base. (Music playing.) Not perfect, but it sounds much, much better. Let's try another test. I'm going to bring this Stereo Track down, solo that track and I'm going to switch this over to the Stereo Mix Default which I think turns out to be the best preset for Time Shift.
So I'm going to go ahead and hit the Preview button and then tweak a bunch of the parameters and we'll see how well it reacts. (Music playing.) So obviously you can have a lot of fun with this plug-in but you know that it has its limits. If you try to change the tempo or the pitch too much it will create a lot of artifacts. However, for changes that are relatively close to the original tempo and pitch, Time Shift handles them pretty well.
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