Join David Franz for an in-depth discussion in this video Checking out some Pro Tools 8 general enhancements, part of Pro Tools 8 New Features.
There are many new enhancements to the Pro Tools software in Version 8. Here I am going to show you a bunch of the more general but still very important upgrades. First, Pro Tools 8 LE and M-Powered can have up to 48 mono or stereo audio tracks. Here I am going to create 48 stereo audio tracks; there we go, all the way to 48. This is a bump up of 16 tracks from Pro Tools 7, and special note, you can perform quick punch on 24 of these tracks at once.
Now if you want more than 48 tracks in Pro Tools LE, you can actually purchase the Music Production Toolkit, the DV Toolkit or the Complete Production Toolkit, this can increase your track count up to 128 mono or 64 stereo audio tracks as well as increasing your instrument tracks to 64 and your basses to 128 among other features. Pro Tools 8 now supports mixed file formats. So you can have WAV files, AIFF files, and Sound Designer II files, so they all coexist in one session. The SD2 files are Mac only options. The only requirements are that the files must be the same sampling rate and bit depth as the session. Otherwise, the files have to be converted to the session parameters.
Here I will import an AIFF file with the same sampling rate and bit depth as the session. Note that the session that I actually created here was with WAV files as the session parameter. However, you see here in the Import Audio window that piece of audio that I want to bring in can be added directly to the current session or it can be converted to the session's audio file type, but why not just add as it is? That's the new feature here.
So if I add this new audio file, the AIFF files to the WAV file session, it doesn't matter. They will just add it right in, and there you see it in the Regions list. A cool new feature of Pro Tools 8 is the ability now to open a session with all of the plug-ins deactivated. We will do this. we'll open any previous session, and I am going to press Shift while I select this session, and all of the plug-ins and virtual instruments will be deactivated. This is a great feature if you have a lot of plug-ins and instruments in a session that might really bug down you system, so you can open it, and now we see all of these plug- ins and instruments are deactivated, but we can still open the session, no problem, and we don't have to worry about any CPU overload issues.
Well, still in this session, I am going to show you another excellent Pro Tools 8 new feature. We have different hardware buffer sizes. Look at that, all the way down to 32 samples. That is impressive. That means that you can have very low monitoring latency while you are recording. FireWire devices like the 003, will allow you to have 32 samples, some other devices will only allow you to have 64 samples but that's still down from previous versions of Pro Tools, and some devices will even let you go up to 2048 samples not shown here, but the higher hardware buffer sizes are great if you have sessions with a lot of plug-ins and virtual instruments.
So I am going to choose the higher hardware buffer size here, and click OK. Another feature for ensuring the best time synchronization with MIDI in Pro Tools is the ability to set the MIDI beat clock offsets. You can open this up here MIDI Beat Clock, and checking off the devices that we want MIDI Beat Clock for. We can go in here and manually set the number of samples that we want for our MIDI Offset.
The technique for how to determine the right amount of offset is explained in the Pro Tools 8 Reference Manual as well as the what's new in Pro Tools LE and M-Powered 8 documents. Another handy feature of Pro Tools 8 is that you can actually check for updates to the Pro Tools application and other plug-ins, either automatically or manually. Checking for it manually, you can go up here to the Help menu > Check for Updates and you see how fast it is.
It went online, it checked it out, said you are good to go. Your Pro Tools software is up-to-date. If we want to turn-off this automatic feature, we can just check this checkbox right there. Now you should note that Pro Tools will not automatically install anything. It will simply check and inform you if there are any available updates. Here is a list of the enhancements to Pro Tools 8 shown in this video. Increased track counts up to 48 mono or stereo audio tracks, support for mixed file formats, opening sessions with plug-ins deactivated, the new H/W buffer size settings down to 32 samples with FireWire devices or up to 2048 samples on other devices.
Pro Tools 8 will also automatically check for software updates to both the application or plug-ins, and you notice these last two I haven't mentioned yet. Increased file size limits up to 3.4 GB, this is up from 2 GB in previous versions of Pro Tools, and Pro Tools LE supports QuickTime HD and QuickTime SD files (Mac only). All of these enhancements are going to have far-reaching effects on how you are going to use Pro Tools 8.
- Exploring the new virtual instruments and effects
- Learning the new menu and toolbar items
- Editing MIDI data with the new MIDI Editor window
- Creating a comp with the new playlist features
- Using Elastic Pitch for pitch alteration
- Working with the new automation and controller lanes
- Customizing the Edit Window toolbar
- Changing the look of Pro Tools with the Color palette
- Utilizing the 30+ new session templates
- Creating a musical score with the new Score Editor window