Learn about Mix and Edit groups, how to create a group, and how to activate and deactivate groups.
- [Instructor] Earlier, I created a submix for a set of background vocal tracks to control the overall levels and processing for those tracks. A related option is to create mix and edit groups for sets of tracks. Let's take a look. Mix and edit groups let me link various parameters and operations between sets of grouped tracks. So here I'll create a group for the background vocal tracks. I'll start with a set of selected tracks and then use the Group command under the Track menu. Notice that Track groups here are different from the Clip groups I introduced earlier in this course.
When you choose the Track, Group command the Create Groups dialog box displays, allowing you to specify the characteristics for the group. We can name the group, so I'll call this BG Vox. And we can also select a group ID if desired. Pro Tools gives us four sets of IDs to choose from, each using letters A through Z, for a total of up to 104 possible groups. If you don't specify group IDs, Pro Tools will assign them sequentially.
Okay, we don't have any VCAs in this session, so this popup won't apply. And next, we can choose to follow the global attributes as set under the Globals tab here, but let's leave that off for now. Under the Tracks tab, I can modify the tracks that will be included in the group. For example, here I might want to exclude the background vocal sub from the group, so I'll select it and click Remove. Under the Attributes tab I can specify what parameters to link for the group.
For now, let's focus on the Main Attributes here at the top, and the Mix Attributes down here at the bottom. You'll typically want to link the volume faders here, and you might also link the track mute and pan settings. And for surround mixing on HD, you can choose to link the LFE levels. You can also choose to link record enables, the track input monitoring button, track solo buttons, and the track automation modes.
I'll enable solos here. With that done, I'll click OK to create the group. Track groups appear in the group list here in the Mix window, and also in the side column here in the Edit window. Let's go back to the Mix window and I'll resize this group list so it's a little easier to access. Mix and edit groups are active when they're created, as indicated by the highlighting on the group name in the group list.
When the group is active, its linked parameters operate across all member tracks. So now if I click on a solo button, all member tracks are soloed. Now if I move a fader, the faders on all member tracks move in unison. I can deactivate the group by clicking on it in the group list so that it becomes unhighlighted. So now I have individual control over the member tracks again, and I can make changes that don't affect the other group members.
So that's the basic idea behind using track groups. You can set up groups for each of the main sets of tracks in your session to easily control things like solos, mutes, and levels across those tracks. And you can choose when to apply group control by activating and deactivating the groups in the group list. Simply click on the name to toggle its state. Once you've set up appropriate groups for your session, your mixing tasks will become much easier to manage. The time you spend setting up groups will be more than made up for by the efficiency you'll gain.
- Starting a new session
- Customizing settings
- Optimizing the performance of Pro Tools
- Importing loops and tracks
- Working with meter changes
- Recording multiple takes
- Changing the track timebase
- Editing MIDI clips
- Warping sound and tightening rhythm with Elastic Audio
- Using the Smart Tool
- Color coding tracks
- Editing on the grid
- Working with AudioSuite plug-ins
- Working with sends, plug-ins, and master faders
- Working with track subsets
- Finalizing and exporting media