Pro Tools: Session Cleaning

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When you are done tracking and before you can actually start mixing, there is some cleaning to be done. It is not groovy and you want it to be quick.

In this video, Ben shows you how to speed this process up as well as dealing with clicks and pops and unwanted noises with keyboard shortcuts and the smart tool in Pro tools.

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Ben Lindell

Ben is a NYC based producer/engineer who has worked with artists from MGMT to Soulja Boy, Bebel Giberto to Lloyd Banks, Ryan Leslie, Olivia, Tony Yayo, Red Cafe, Edie Brickell, Carole Pope and hundreds of other artists from around the world. He grew up in Iowa and then attended the University of Miami.

In addition to being a fantastic musician he is also a tremendous geek when it comes to anything technical, be it software, plug-ins, microphones or outboard gear. It's this marriage of musical creativity and technical know-how that makes him an in demand producer/engineer.


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2021 Jun 19
Yey Guys, I have a position here, if you not broke the region with the key command B - You can't operate with cross fade shortcut only press F - It doesn't work. But if you split the region, work well.
2020 Aug 22
Non negotiable!!! :)
2016 May 07
I would listen to any track I'm putting fades on to make sure I'm not taking out something I want. For instance, when you did the vocal fades you might have been cutting off breaths in the beginning or S's at the end. It never hurts to check it while you are doing it to be safe. One technique I use is to solo the tracks I'm editing and let playback run while I'm editing as it helps you hear anything that needs editing or any mistakes you made in editing. I try to keep the playback cursor to the left of my editing. It makes you learn to do it faster and let's you hear the edits.
2016 Feb 06
Stuff I needed to know. This was good and simple to grasp.
2014 Oct 06
thankyou so much
2012 Oct 09
Ben, If you group the clips that are adjacent, will the pop still be there? Vs the crossfade? In the past with my stuff I had a bunch of clips in a track, and I would just group them into one. I never heard any clicks anyhow, but just wondering. If you do a bunch of crossfades in a track, and then group it what happens to the crossfades? Sorry for the nube questions!
2012 Aug 20
@emsrecords: If I remember correctly this is a LE vs HD issue. HD records from the moment you press play on any record enabled track (hence allowing you to pull open more of the region) and LE doesn't start recording until you press record. I'm not sure if this is still an issue in PT9 and PT10.
2012 Aug 12
If you put the cross-fade at the exact point at which the punch in started recording, you would not be able to slide the region before that point in the timeline. Not sure how you did this... is there a setting within the pre-roll to achieve this?
Becky Jo Benson
2012 Jul 02
Ben, I have watched your video on cleaning tracks and Fab's video on shortcuts several times to let it soak in my brain. This is SO MUCH EASIER and more FUN than reading the manuals! Thank you guys for all your help! Becky Jo Benson
2012 May 09
Fab, I master my track in protools in 48,24bit and use an external compressor and go back into pro tools also add the L2 Limiter plugin add the end of the chain..when I'm ready to print my track i dither the L2 in 16 bit and export the track in 16bit, i need to dither in pro tools as well or dither the L2 in 16bit at the end of the chain will bring my tack to 44,16bit?
2012 Apr 11
I love editing! I need moooree!!! :)
2011 Oct 06
Great videos. I kept wanting to hit command/save after you did an edit. lol Habit.
2011 May 13
Thanks for this video. what a relief, I thought I was the only one in the world cleaning sessions before I mix... it's just part of the micx prep process nowadays - I thought high profile engineers like you would have a tech rider that specifies you will not accept "uncleaned" sessions., haha.
2011 Apr 24
Yes there is! It is a bit different though as it will affect the height of the tracks. But it works! MAC: Control + Option + Command + up/down arrow PC: Control + Start + Alt + up/down arrow Note that if you remove Option (alt), this will only affect the selected tracks.
2011 Apr 18
Great Vid! Is there a short cut to Zoom in vertically also?