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Old 02-09-2000, 05:03 PM
Jonny Atack Jonny Atack is offline
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Paris, France
Posts: 311

Last year I mixed a number of projects entirely within PT -- before going back to a hybrid approach similar to what Georgia describes using PT and then mixing on an analog desk.

Case in point: I just mixed a few alternative rock tracks here in Paris for an band in North Hollywood. The source media was 16-bit ProTools 4.3.1 song files. The PT tracks were output via 3 Apogee AD8000s (one in-house, two rented) to a DDA desk. Levels were automated in PT. EQ/comps/FX were done both with PT plugins and with outboard gear.

After the last track was mixed, I took a few hours to compare that mix with the all-in-PT approach. I recorded the outboard FX desk busses back into PT (limiters/comps, verbs/plates, DDLs, chorusing/pitch mods), then imitated the desk/outboard EQs using plugins, then routed all out the 1-2 bus to bounce to disk.

The hard part was to get the plugin EQs (Waves & McDSP) to sound like the desk and outboard EQs...a couple dBs of cut/gain on the latter requires a lot more on the plugins. I find that plugin EQ works best when cutting and filtering. For big 'n fat EQ the outboard and desk works best.

If you do mix from PT to an analog desk: The PT tracks sent to the desk sound better when the PT fader is at unity gain and levels are set with the analog desk...rather than setting levels within PT and leaving the analog faders at zero. This unfortunately runs contrary to what is more convenient: setting the levels in advance with PT automation.

In the end, the all-in PT mix sounded rounder and a bit fuller in the low-mids. The extreme hi and lo frequencies sounded a bit more natural. It sounded nicer.

The hybrid mix had more attitude and barked and kicked butt a lot more. It rocked. It sounded dirtier and meaner. You can guess which mix the band and label preferred.

[This message has been edited by Jonny Atack (edited February 09, 2000).]
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