Pizivisor–Video to audio conversion and back again!

On November 5, 2013, in iOS, Music Technology, Uncategorized, by Daniel Rowland

Using a stock GIF playing in Pixivisor from an iPad and a Mac…this is converted to audio and run through effects in Ableton Live and filters on an iRig Mix, then converted back to video in Pixivisor on another iPad. Modulated by a short drum loop from the Nine Inch Nails track, “The Warning”.

Using a stock GIF playing in Pixivisor from an iPad and a Mac…this is converted to audio and run through effects in Ableton Live and filters on an iRig Mix, then converted back to video in Pixivisor on another iPad. Modulated by a short drum loop from the Nine Inch Nails track, “The Warning”.

Vocal Remixing with an iPad

On November 5, 2013, in iOS, Music Technology, Uncategorized, by Daniel Rowland

  Vocal Remixing Here is a quick performance using granular processing with Ableton and a few iPads. The idea is to loop and layer a short phrase of the vocal, creating a different arrangement.

 

Vocal Remixing

Here is a quick performance using granular processing with Ableton and a few iPads. The idea is to loop and layer a short phrase of the vocal, creating a different arrangement.

New Features of Pro Tools 10: Session Setup Window

On November 20, 2011, in Music Technology, ProTools Tutorials, by Daniel Rowland

Pro Tools 10 has a number of small changes over Pro Tools 9. For instance, Pro Tools 10 supports the use of multiple file formats and bit depths within the same session. Prior to 10, if you opened the Session Setup Window, you would get information about your session sample rate, bit depth, and file […]

Pro Tools 10 has a number of small changes over Pro Tools 9. For instance, Pro Tools 10 supports the use of multiple file formats and bit depths within the same session. Prior to 10, if you opened the Session Setup Window, you would get information about your session sample rate, bit depth, and file format. However, you could not change those properties of your session

 

Pro Tools 9

 

In Pro Tools 10, this window looks a bit different:

Pro Tools 10

Notice that you now get dropdown menus to change bit depth and audio file format. You can even dynamically change whether the session works with stereo interleaved files, or deinterleaves them into .L and .R files. The one setting that remains unchangeable is the sample rate.

Keep in mind that running a Pro Tools 10 session with multiple file formats and bit depths (as well as interleaved files) will make backwards compatibility with Pro Tools 9 a bit of a chore. You’ll need to perform a Save Copy In to covert all the audio media to the consistent format expected in Pro Tools 9, not to mention saving a .ptf session file, as Pro Tools 10 defaults to saving in the new .ptx format that is not recognized by Pro Tools 9. More on the various new file formats in another post!

What’s New in Pro Tools 10 and Pro Tools HDX: AAX Plugins

On October 25, 2011, in Uncategorized, by Daniel Rowland

Pro Tools 10 New Features: AAX Plugins.       So, once upon a time (like, last week)  there were 3 Pro Tools plugin types: Audiosuite, RTAS (Real-time Audiosuite), and TDM (Time Division Multiplexing–exclusively for Pro Tools HD systems). With Pro Tools 10, we see a new plugin format: AAX (Avid Audio eXtension). While at first […]

Pro Tools 10 New Features: AAX Plugins.

 

 

 

So, once upon a time (like, last week)  there were 3 Pro Tools plugin types: Audiosuite, RTAS (Real-time Audiosuite), and TDM (Time Division Multiplexing–exclusively for Pro Tools HD systems). With Pro Tools 10, we see a new plugin format: AAX (Avid Audio eXtension). While at first this may seem a bit unnecessary, the new AAX format could be a significant improvement in plugin efficiency, and also in the way we purchase and work with plugins in Pro Tools 10…or we could all  just get hit will big upgrade costs.

In earlier versions of Pro Tools HD, you could choose to insert TDM or RTAS  plugins on a track. Many plugins had both TDM and RTAS versions (though the TDM version was usually a bit more expensive). The main difference between the two was that TDM plugins ran off the processing cards that are part of an HD system. These cards have chips that expand the processing power of your computer, and can be used to handle processing for TDM plugins and the Pro Tools mix engine. RTAS plugins simply use your computer’s native processor to handle the DSP. This is fine, until your computer becomes overworked and can no longer keep up with routing/summing audio, processing via plugins, running virtual instruments etc.

RTAS and TDM are now becoming legacy formats–still supported, but for how long?Pro Tools 10 software will allow you to run TDM plugins, but only on the older (now legacy) Pro Tools HD Core and Accel cards. The newly unveiled Pro Tools HDX DSP cards (as they are now branded), are not compatible with TDM, and only support AAX DSP. What is this “AAX DSP” you say?

AAX plugins come in two different formats: AAX DSP and AAS Native. As mentioned, AAX DSP is compatible with Pro Tools HDX only (and conversely, TDM plugins will not work with HDX hardware!). AAX Native plugins will work with any version of Pro Tools 10. 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is where things get a little muddy. From what I understandRTAS plugins are inefficient when it comes to processor usage, and are also a bit tweaky to code. Programmers would typically have to code an RTAS version, and then an entire other version for TDM. Given the smaller market for TDM plugins (you must own an Pro Tools HD system), this also made those versions more expensive. The new AAX format supposedly allows a programmer to code the plugin once, and then essentially compile a DSP version and a Native version.

The question is, will plugin developers bundle the two AAX versions together, or still stick Pro Tools HDX users who want DSP plugins with a higher cost? Ideally you would purchase a plugin in AAX format, install it, and get the option to run DSP or Native if you own Pro Tools HDX, or just Native if you run non-HD Pro Tools 10.  If that turns out to be the case, will the cost of the AAX format be more than the old RTAS format, if you are now getting the DSP version as well (which non-HD users don’t care about so much)? How will this affect compatibility as you move between HDX and non-HD Pro Tools 10 systems? This all remains to be seen…but I’ll be posting more on this in the near future.

I have a feeling that plugin manufacturers will still sell the AAX DSP and AAX Native plugins separately, just as was done in the days of TDM and RTAS. The real difference to the average Pro Tools user will be that the new AAX architecture will make more efficient use of computer resources, and that certain plugins will now be available to run natively, that previously were only available in the TDM/DSP format. For example, Channel Strip, Revibe, Reverb One, Impact, and Down Mixer are all AAX plugins that are included in Pro Tools 10, both in AAX DSP and AAX Native formats.

 

Pro Tools 10 Tutorials: AudioSuite Plugin Chains

On October 22, 2011, in ProTools Tutorials, Uncategorized, by Daniel Rowland

Audiosuite plugins have some great new features in Pro Tools 10.

What’s new in Pro Tools 10: Audiosuite Plugin Chains.

Audiosuite plugins have some great new features in Pro Tools 10.

First off, a little review! Audiosuite plugins are “offline” plugins in Pro Tools. Meaning, they don’t process audio in real-time like RTAS (Real-time Audiosuite) plugins. Instead of inserting Audiosuite plugins on a track, you highlight an audio region (now called a clip) in the timeline, open up the Audiosuite plugin, and either audition or process the audio region. The bottom portion of an Audiosuite plugin looked like this, with options to preview, bypass, changing preview level, and process:

 

Up until now, you could open no more than one Audiosuite plugin at a time, and you could not use or save “chains” of Audiosuite plugins for a specific task.

That’s changed with Audiosuite plugins in Pro Tools 10. Now, by holding down the “Shift” key, you can click on and open multiple Audiosuite plugins. The keyboard shortcut also works for opening multiple RTAS plugin windows as well, by the way.

   

What this allows you to do is use multiple Audiosuite plugins, in series, to process a region. Used to be, you’d have to process the eq, then process with the compressor, without getting to audition them together at the same time as a chain. The old solution (for me at least) was to audition with an RTAS chain and then copy the settings in to Audiosuite plugins…which was a pain!

Ok, so we can have Audiosuite chains. The next new feature of Pro Tools 10 is the ability to save and recall these chains, as well as the settings of the plugins. This is a pretty useful addition, and it is implemented using an already familiar feature of Pro Tools–Window Configurations. A Window Configuration in Pro Tools simply allows you to save the layout (the configuration) of windows in the interface. This could be the size and position of the Mix and Edit windows, the transport, RTAS plugin windows, etc. The new addition is the ability of the Window Configuration to recall Audiosuite plugins and their settings. So, for instance, you could save a configuration for your vocal effects chain for the chorus of a track, and recall it easily. Simply open up the Audiosuite plugins, set them the way you want, and create a new configuration from under the Window menu, or by using the keycommand (on the numeric keypad): period(.) + the configuration number you’d like to use + plus(+).

 


Window configurations can be recalled in a similar way to Memory Locations–but from the Window Configurations List.

The keyboard shortcut for recalling configurations is (on the numeric keypad): period(.) + the number of the configuration + asterisk(*).

These configurations can be exported from one session into another, so you can migrate your favorite Audiosuite plugin chains between sessions. You’ve long been able to do this with RTAS chains using Import Session Data. It’s nice to see the functionality extend into the world of offline processing. I’m imagining this feature will get a great deal of use in post production.

The last new feature of Audiosuite plugins in Pro Tools 10 has to do with the way in which they render your audio clips. At the bottom right of each plugin is this dialogue box:

From here, you can choose to render the entire parent file for the clip (include the portions of the clip that you are not looking at), by pressing the “Whole File” button. Perhaps even more useful, is the ability to render “handles” to the clip. Meaning, you can process a defined range of audio on either side of the clip boundary, so if you decide to trim the clip later, you can actually reveal processed audio. In the old Audiosuite process, once you rendered a region with an Audiosuite plugin, you had a new region that’s boundaries were set–you could hide portions of the region, but you could never trim them out to reveal more audio than what you actually processed, if that makes sense. You can set the length of these Audiosuite handles from each individual plugin (the above picture has a 2 second handle), or by setting a default from the preferences in Pro Tools, under the Processing tab.

You may have seen the “handles” feature before, if you have ever used the Compact option in the Regions List.

In closing, keep in mind that this new Audiosuite processing is independent of both clip-based gain settings, and real-time fades. In previous versions of Pro Tools, rendering a region/clip with an Audiosuite plugin would also write your fades into the region. As fades are now real-time in Pro Tools 10, this is no longer an issue. That means no more Fades folder to keep track of!

Stay tuned for more Pro Tools 10 tutorials!