Pro Tools 8 Playlists for ADR

After having a bit more of a play on ProTools 8 I wanted to write about the new playlist features.

With PT8, playlists are far more functional than they were to this version. In particular is the ability to list all alternate playlist under the primary track as a collapsable group of tracks. This allows you to view all tracks at once, and not just simply cycle through the playlist tracks one by one. where this is particularly useful is when recording ADR takes. After going to your "preferences" and selecting "Automatically create new playlists when loop recording", Pro tools will create playlists for all of your takes. These takes can then be made visible, showing up lined up directly under the main playlist.
This is excellent for editing dialogues and ADR (and of course music). What you can do is solo through the alternate playlist (alternate takes) select the portion of the track you like and edit it into a "cut track" or "final edit track". Another great feature is that the main playlist will keep the track coloring from the original playlists so that you are always aware visualy where the edit selection came from. An example is below.

The green edits are original from the main playlist.
However as you can see I have taken edits from the other three alternate playlists and simply placed them on the main playlist. An easy method is by using the "separation grabber" This allows all automation to be tied to these tracks making it easier when shifting tracks (with alt playlists) to various sessions.


Pro Tools 8 - What I think so far

Now that I have started to use Pro Tools 8, I wanted to give my thoughts on this upgrade.

To start with, when opening Pro Tools now you are greeted by a splash screen asking if you wish to open from a list of templates or existing session. (This feature can be turned off)

The look of Pro Tools has changed. No longer is the edit window a nice clean bright screen with fine lines and easy to read details, it now has taken a more dark appearance akin to that of Logic 8, with fine lines and text now seeming to be more bold.
A positive to the new look interface though is the addition of a db level range on the mixer.

Once you get over the new look, the fun begins.

Pro tools now ships with many more plug ins. With new virtual instruments including:

Boom drum machine and sequencer
DB-33 tonewheel organ emulator with rotating speaker simulation
Mini Grand acoustic grand piano
Vacuum monophonic vacuum tube synthesizer
Xpand!2 multitimbral synth and sample workstation
Structure Free sample player (RTAS)
FXpansion BFD Lite acoustic drum module

Also included are new reverbs, eq's, delays, frequency shifter and a host of new AIR plugins which more closely resemble a palate of guitar stomp boxes. Some of these new plug ins include:

AIR Chorus
AIR Distortion
AIR Dynamic Delay
AIR Enhancer
AIR Ensemble
AIR Filter Gate
AIR Flanger
AIR Frequency Shifter
AIR FuzzWah
AIR MultiChorus
AIR Multi-Delay
AIR Nonlinear Reverb
AIR Phaser
AIR Reverb
AIR Spring Reverb
AIR StereoWidth
AIR Talkbox
AIR Vintage Filter
BF76 Compressor
BF Essential Clip Remover
BF Essential Correlation Meter
BF Essential Meter Bridge
BF Essential Noise Meter
Celemony Melodyne Essential
Eleven Free
TL AutoPan
TL InTune
TL MasterMeter
TL Metro

A new midi editor now sits below the edit window. (By default this is collapsed) It is very similar the the sequencer to that in Reason, with the advantage to be able to toggle between the midi editor and a score editor.

The top of the screen now houses a new customizable tool bar. This allows you to configure which tools and counters appear at the top of the screen. One handy configuration includes the Universe window.

These new features are only a few hand picked features which exist within this new update. I have been working on music remixes, and thus this initial review is more music related. Over the next few months I hope to write what new features in Pro Tools 8 are more suited to those who work in audio post production.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to you all!

It has been a while since I have written on this blog due to work commitments and holiday time. I intend to now gear up the blog entries for the coming year. First up will be some initial thoughts on the new Pro Tools 8.