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Pro Tools: Power User Tips

Avid Pro Tools: Tips & Techniques By Julian Rodgers
Published June 2024

The Preview feature lets you try out different automation passes without deleting the underlying data. To hear your preview, simply Command‑click on the Preview button.The Preview feature lets you try out different automation passes without deleting the underlying data. To hear your preview, simply Command‑click on the Preview button.

We round up some handy Pro Tools shortcuts and time‑saving techniques.

This article was inspired by a recent conversation I had with some fellow Pro Tools users about things that would have saved us a great deal of time if we’d known them sooner. There is no theme to the material presented in this month’s article beyond all of these things being very useful, so hopefully there’s something new here for everyone. Certainly in the conversation I was having there were examples where the reaction of seasoned users went everywhere from sagely nodding agreement through to outright astonishment.

I’ll start with some useful tips which will benefit you before you even get into your session. These tips use Mac modifiers. PC users should substitute Option with Alt, Command with Control, and Control with Start.

Window Pain

We’ve all had the fun of clicking away notifications and warnings, usually without reading them and often with some irritation. Opening a session in Pro Tools and turning away for a moment while it opens, only to find a warning that something has suspended the process, is an irritation. When you get a whole series of warnings about the same thing, it gets downright annoying. To get rid of the current warning and all subsequent warnings, just Option‑click the first one. To get a handle on the circumstances where this applies, just give it a try. You’ll soon understand how it works.

I/O Silver Lining

We’ve all experienced the frustration of opening a session created on a system other than the one we are currently using. If you’re presented with silence when you hit Play, there might be a really simple fix, like the output the session is addressing not being available. In that case, a quick trip to the I/O Setup window and selecting an output bus which is available will be all you need to do. However, if things are more complex than that and you just want to get things working, the path of least resistance is just to level the I/O and start again.

The quick way to do this is to open the I/O Setup window, go to the Output tab and hit Default. If you want to nuke the I/O Setup altogether, then just add Option while clicking Default and all of the tabs will be reset to the defaults for the interface you’re currently using.

Automation...

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