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Importing audio in Protools?

Discussion in 'Pro Tools' started by sushifish, Aug 17, 2005.

  1. sushifish

    sushifish Guest

    If I receive a CD (16bit) to master, I convert the songs to wave files and then "import audio to track" on protools. Am I doing it all wrong? I recall an engineer doing it a while ago through the "movie" section. Can't figure it out that way. Any help would be much apprieciated!! -matt
  2. dira18

    dira18 Guest

    If you go to the "movie" section, there is a command, "Import audio from other movie" that should do it. I'm not at home, but I'm pretty sure thats where it is.

    Hope that helps.

  3. CharlesDayton

    CharlesDayton Active Member

    yes that is it.
  4. sushifish

    sushifish Guest

    Thanx for the replys!

    So is that a more effective way over converting to wave files or just an alternative.
  5. jdsdj98

    jdsdj98 Active Member

    On a more fundamental level, Pro Tools is not mastering software. It is designed solely for recording, editing, and mixing, and as an editor it is non-destructive, rendering it useless for mastering.

    Why are you doing this in the realm of mastering? I've never heard of this....
  6. dira18

    dira18 Guest

    I'm not sure what you mean by, "a more effective way" Aside from the fact that that is how I was taught to import CD music, its just the way protools is set up to do it. You could import it several other other ways, but those most likely require you to convert your files some way or another and I'm not a big fan of conversion if you don't need it.

  7. JerryTubb

    JerryTubb Guest

    Many mastering engineers use Pro Tools, obviously not to burn the master discs, but to otherwise prep the soundfiles.
  8. mixandmaster

    mixandmaster Active Member

    Just an alternative. You can import audio off CDs three ways.

    1. "Import audio to track" from the "File" menu
    2. "Import Audio from Current/Other Movie" in the "Movie" menu
    3. "Import Audio" from the "Audio" bin tab.
  9. jdsdj98

    jdsdj98 Active Member

    Thanks, Jerry. No intentions here of hi-jacking sushi's thread, but I am a little confused, as someone who in no way professes any expertise on the art of mastering.

    As a non-destructive editor, how can PT be used to prep files for mastering? Additionally, upon import, PT breaks a stereo file into 2 separate L & R files in the "Audio Files" folder. This, to me, seems like an unnecessary and undesired processing of the file when mastering. And then, to get the file(s) out of PT and back into a true stereo format to be mastered, you would have to bounce to disk, again an unnecessary and undesirable (at least IMO) process in the mastering stage.

    In order to make a destructive, permanent change to a file in PT, you have 3 options:

    1. Bounce to disk
    2. Consolidate selection
    3. Process a region selection with an Audiosuite plug in

    None of these seem to me like an efficient way of doing any prep, work, or finalization in the mastering room. Isn't there better, more dedicated "mastering" software and hardware out there for these purposes? Maybe some of our moderators can clarify here....

    To me, it seems that PT would ONLY be useful in a mastering room to lay out tracks and quickly move things around in order to audition the flow of one track to the next, and thus construct a template for the layout of the CD. But again, I profess complete ignorance as to what happens in a mastering room, as I've never attended a mastering session. Just looking for a little clarification, but please keep sushi's original topic in mind. This is his thread, not mine.
  10. JerryTubb

    JerryTubb Guest

    Jamie, sounds like you've got a really good grasp of Pro Tools' capabilities.

    My main disagreement, is with your "absolute" statements.


    "rendering it useless"

    "unnecessary and undesirable"

    "ONLY be useful"

    Pro Tools is a very flexible audio environment, can be used in Mastering work, except for pq editing and disc burning... what's so hard about understanding that?

    This statement however rings true:

    "I profess complete ignorance as to what happens in a mastering room, as I've never attended a mastering session."

    Then why are you giving advice in a Mastering forum ?
  11. soundfarm

    soundfarm Guest

    Perhaps Pro Tools would be better suited for stem based mastering? I am not an avid pro tools fan, (just not wild about the user interface), but I certainly see pro tools gaining tracktion in that area. Just a thought.

  12. jdsdj98

    jdsdj98 Active Member

    Yep. Spent way too many hours honing my editing chops.

    You're absolutely right. I realize now that my absolutes apply only to my working methods, and not to everyone's. I should explore other ways to use the tools at my disposal, and that's precisely why I asked these questions. I should have been more open minded in posing my questions, however, and found different ways of phrasing them.

    Nothing at all. However, I only received a vague response to my original question:

    where you replied:

    That was my sincere attempt at modesty and humility, and not an invitation for a flame war. That's always my MO here, to be courteous to those to whom I am speaking, and never sound like I know more than I do. It's always difficult to read intent and motive into written words, and I make every attempt to be clear as to what I am saying here and why I am saying it. I have not given a single piece of advice here, only:

    which I now realize was a very close minded statement. Beyond that one statement, you will only find questions in my 3 posts. That has now led me to ask my original question again:

    What, exactly and specifically, do you use PT for in a mastering room? Based on my familiarity with its functions, I do not understand its utility as mastering software.

    Just hungry for a little more knowledge and expanded use from my tools....

  13. iznogood

    iznogood Guest

    my workflow in protools has always(5years) been something like this:

    grab the files into protools (if audio) or import them (if data).....

    i always tell people to bring the files as 24bit/44.1kHz if is is possible..... audio cd is a compromise.

    then i have the seperate files on seperate tracks..... i do a bit of gain if it's completely off...

    then out through D/A and some nice analog equipment (sometimes with a digital eq before the D/A)..... then back (thru A/D) into protools.... when in a hurry i route thru an L2.... but mostly i then (again) have all the now mastered tracks seperately and put an L2 on each of them......

    i then record all the tracks to a stereo file through a digital loop.

    of course i need to do pq coding and isrc.... i use waveburner...

    i import the stereofile and just apply the id's.... or seperate files if i recorded them with L2

    so.... as you see i can use for protools for mastering..... and i love it....

    why shouldn't i? it imports and exports all file types....

    tried nuendo and sequoia but think the user intefaces are SOOOO cluttered i go blind......
  14. Michael Fossenkemper

    Michael Fossenkemper Distinguished past mastering moderator Well-Known Member

    I'm a protools user, not that it's my prefered system but I find that it works well with what i deal with and the things i do, plus I already own it. first you have to seperate processing from compiling when working with protools. a dedicated mastering system doesn't require this but since we are talking about PT, here is how i use it. If i get 24/44.1 or 16/44.1, i import them into a session. Whether or not they are dual mono or interleaved, they still have to be imported into a daw. there is no sonic difference between the two. It has some very good routing capabilities which i setup to enhance the experience of mastering inside protools. Once that's setup, It allows me to route either analog or digital to any outboard gear. if a plugin fits the bill, I can pop that in too. Now that my chain is running and I'm routing through my gear, I setup a track to record to, I don't bounce to disc. this keeps all of the data in the same session. i capture at 24 bit. I can preview any of the other tracks i've mastered to make sure I'm good to go and with the routing, i can listen to the before and after by assigning an aux into my console. Once i've processed all of my tracks, i just open up waveburner and assemble and set the dither. Granted that there is a step added by closing protools and opening up waveburner which isn't required with something that can pq and burn. But with lots of people working in protools, I can easily open up sessions where they placed the tracks where the wanted them. so you loose some here and gain some there. I usually have to take a pee at this point anyways so while the program is loading for 30 secs, I can run out and wizz. would i like to have a dedicated system like sonicHD, you bet, but I get a lot of stuff and I do a lot of different things like master 5.1 which I can use PT and see the movie at the same time. Now if someone would come out with a mac based system that would allow me to import PT sessions, route anyway I want, be able to do 5.1 and see the video, pq and burn a CD all in one app, I'll buy it. But there isn't one yet. We'll see what soundblade can do with stereo program material if it ever comes out.

    If I get files that are higher than 44.1 then i create a CD24 disk that plays in my masterlink, routed to outboard, SCR'd and captured in my daw, Assemble and burn. So in the big scheme of things, working in protools in really no more of a hinderence than any other program.
  15. jdsdj98

    jdsdj98 Active Member

    Awesome. Thanks for the clarification, guys. My statements and working methods only took into account the DSP capabilities of PT and not the playback/record capabilities (sometimes alongside other software applications). That makes sense and I now realize how it could be utilized in that regard. And when considering the huge number of PT users out there, it only makes sense that they could hand you a PT session to use for mastering.

    Now I understand....

    Again, this is sushifish's thread, not mine, so let's put it back on track with the original topic at hand. Thanks again.
  16. mixandmaster

    mixandmaster Active Member

    Once again, I just waited for someone more eloquent than me to reply to a topic, and both iznogood and Michael did it.

  17. sushifish

    sushifish Guest

    Yes.... great info! (iznogood & Michael) Thank you!! Very helpful. I received 4 discs to master this week and now I have a better understanding :cool:

    Also, I found this link and was wondering what you (waves users) thought of this mastering tutorial. Would you change or add anything? Thanx again. -matty
    Link removed
  18. mixandmaster

    mixandmaster Active Member

    I think it's absolute garbage. Pretty much all of it between step 1 and "Adjust the Out Ceiling slider of L2 to a value of -0.2"...then the rest of the article is crap, too. :oops:

    It's like saying...to cook meat, put it in a pan for 3 minutes. Turn it over, cook it for 4 minutes, then..."That's it! You're now done cooking...send me an email and let me know how it tastes." Fish is different from steak is different from turkey is different from grilled is different from baked...you get the picture. :-?
  19. sushifish

    sushifish Guest

    Good point! Are the plugs the right ones to work with? (REQ4, Linear Multiband, & L2) Anything to take out or add? Thanx again -matt
  20. JerryTubb

    JerryTubb Guest

    Fair enough... no flame war intended... my comment retracted.

    sincerity, modesty, humilty... all good qualities... thanks.

    FWIW... my workflow is very much what Mikey posted:

    Source... Analog Path... Pro Tools... WaveBurner... Plextools...

    also waiting to check out Soundblade... maybe at AES?


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