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Viewing and manipulating tracks

From: Pro Tools 9 Essential Training

Video: Viewing and manipulating tracks

Once you have created some tracks in Pro Tools, there's a lot of ways to view and manipulate those tracks before, during, and after you record material onto them. Let's start with the Tracks list. As you'll notice, when I click a name of a track in the Tracks list, the name of the track gets highlighted here. That means it is selected. If I click this circle, it will hide the track. There are some other options here in the Tracks list menu, where you can show only certain types of tracks, you can hide selected tracks, and sort tracks.

Viewing and manipulating tracks

Once you have created some tracks in Pro Tools, there's a lot of ways to view and manipulate those tracks before, during, and after you record material onto them. Let's start with the Tracks list. As you'll notice, when I click a name of a track in the Tracks list, the name of the track gets highlighted here. That means it is selected. If I click this circle, it will hide the track. There are some other options here in the Tracks list menu, where you can show only certain types of tracks, you can hide selected tracks, and sort tracks.

You can also move tracks around pretty easily by clicking on the name of the track and dragging it, and the yellow line will indicate where it's going to go. One thing I highly recommend doing is naming your tracks. If you double-click on the name of the track, the name and comments come up, and you can name the track. Now if you don't name the track, and then you record onto that track, the audio files or the MIDI regions that you record will be named the generic name shown here, audio1.

That's why I strongly recommend naming your tracks as soon as you make them, so that the name gets associated with the track right from the beginning. You don't want to have a hard drive filled with a thousand audio1 files. Adding comments is also a great idea to give even more information about what's on the track, or even details about how it was recorded. Like if you're recording in electric guitar amp with the Shure SM57 mic, 1 inch from the left speaker, then those comments can show up in the comments field, and they will be in both the Edit and the Mix window.

So let's name this El Gtr, and I am going to hit the tab key to go down into the Comments field, and I'll say, "SM57 on the left speaker 1 inch from grill." Press Return and that will show up in the Comments field. We can access that here, and I am going to drag this down to make the track taller. And if we go over to the Mix window, scroll down, and see that the comment is there, and the track is named there as well.

Now there are bunch of comments that we can choose from the track menu that apply to viewing and manipulating tracks. First one I want to do is Duplicate track, so you'll see that the electric guitar track is highlighted. If we duplicate it, we get the Duplicate Tracks dialog and we can choose what data to duplicate. I am going to keep all of this on here, but sometimes you might not want to keep all of these things on here. You can also make multiple duplicates. I will just make one. And you'll see that it automatically names the track El Gtr.dup1.

I would definitely rename this, and you might need to touch up the comments as well. With this track highlighted, if I go up to Track and choose Delete, it will automatically delete that track. Unfortunately, this cannot be undone, so be careful when you decide to delete a track. Let's go back to the Edit window, and I am going to select the electric guitar track again. One of the coolest features in Pro Tools is the ability to make a track inactive.

If you go to Track > Make Inactive, you'll see that the entire track has been grayed out. You can still see it, but you won't hear anything on it, and it will not take up any computer resources. However, all the settings for the track and any audio or MIDI data that's on the track will be saved with the session, so this saves a lot of processing power. If you go back up to track and choose Make Active, then you can start using that track right away again, and you will be able to hear it. If you go back to the Mix window, you can actually click on the icon for the track and choose make Inactive and make it active again by clicking on it again.

Now all of these things that I just mentioned we can actually access by right-clicking on the name of the track. So I just right-clicked, and now we can hide, we can make inactive, we can rename, we can delete tracks--most of things that you can do from the Track menu. So knowing all the ways to view and manipulate your tracks will enable you to be more efficient when using Pro Tools.

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This video is part of

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

106 video lessons · 11452 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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