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Old 03-20-2009, 05:05 PM
BookSix BookSix is offline
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Default Stereo session to Surround...? Digi we need you!

I have a stereo session I need to mix in 5.1 for DVD and HD broadcast. How do I go about converting the session so I have surround pan pots and outputs?
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Old 03-20-2009, 05:21 PM
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O.G. Killa O.G. Killa is offline
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

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Originally Posted by BookSix View Post
I have a stereo session I need to mix in 5.1 for DVD and HD broadcast. How do I go about converting the session so I have surround pan pots and outputs?
You have to create surround busses and hardware output assignments in the IO setup window, and then assign the tracks to those busses.
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Old 03-20-2009, 06:05 PM
BookSix BookSix is offline
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

Sorry, I wasn't clear. My entire system is also setup in stereo. I know there is the whole 'hold-shift while booting PT' function but I can't remember what to do or where to go to set the system up for 5.1. After that I should be able (maybe) to figure the busses out.
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Old 03-20-2009, 10:03 PM
Mikey MTC Mikey MTC is offline
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

O. G. Killa's advice was right on.
But first make sure you've got the Surround Mixer or Surround Dithered Mixer in your plugins folder.

Once you have, open your I/O Setup and you'll need to create anywhere between 0 and many 5.1 busses. After that you must create a master 5.1 output from your hardware interface.

If you haven't done all this before, it can get pretty tricky but that's what you need to do to get going in 5.1. Thre might be some templates Digi have included to fast-track this whole process, but I can't remember off hand.
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Old 03-21-2009, 11:36 AM
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BookSix View Post
Sorry, I wasn't clear. My entire system is also setup in stereo. I know there is the whole 'hold-shift while booting PT' function but I can't remember what to do or where to go to set the system up for 5.1. After that I should be able (maybe) to figure the busses out.
Hi Brett, you don't have to reboot or anything, as Mike mentioned, so long as the surround mixer or surround dithered mixer is in your plugins folder when you start up protools you can do stereo or surround simultaneously. There's nothing to switch.

You'll notice when creating new tracks, even in your stereo session, the New Track window gives you the option to do all types of surround tracks.

In the IO setup window, create a New Path. In the little dropdown that usually says "stereo" or "mono", choose "5.1" or "LCR" or "quad" or whatever you need the bus to be. Then you can create "sub paths" under that which will give you the ability to assign outputs and inputs just to the sub path.

For example, You Create a 5.1 bus called "Dialogue Stem". But Dialogue is usually never full 5.1. It's usually just LCR. So create a subpath to the DIA Stem and call it "Dia LCR" and choose "LCR" and click the little squares so the LCR gets sent to the same busses as the LCR in the DIA Stem... Then, to save processing power, you might need to run two stereo verbs and a mono verb instead of one surround verb (which can eat up a lot of DSP depending on the plugin). So you would create a subpath out of the DIA Stem for "Dia Verb Out LR", Dia Verb Out LsRs", and "Dia Verb Out C". Or you could do two verbs, a mono and a quad... so you'd have "Dia Verb Out C" and "Dia Verb Out Quad" and the quad would get assigned to L/R and Ls/Rs in the subpath.

Also worth noting, surround panners take up A LOT of DSP. So doing these subpaths is also a great way to conserve on DSP. If you have your Dialogue organized so that all "on screen" dialogue is together on adjacent tracks, and then all "off screen" Dialogue (like loop group or off camera lines) is together on adjecent tracks. You can Assign all the on camera to "C" since you will never be panning it out of center and the off camera you can assign to L/R or LCR. This will help conserve DSP since you aren't using a full 5.1 mixer for all the tracks.

And again, if your dialogue is NEVER going to be anywhere other than LCR, don't bother making a 5.1 for it. You are just wasting DSP. In your "5.1 Mix" or "5.1 print master" or whatever you want to call it, make a subpath for LCR print master and you can assign your Dialogue to that, and the dialogue will only get recorded to the LCR of the main 5.1 mix.

Using bussing in protools, you can setup all your stem mixes and your Print master at the same time and record them simultaneously (essentially using your Protools session as the dubber). That is, if you have the DSP to do it.

The general guideline, if something is never going to be put in a channel, don't have the track outputting to that channel. As you start to put this together you'll quickly see how multichannel mixers eat up DSP.

And if you can, try to organize your tracks based on where they are going to be placed in the 5.1 field, this will help you assign the outputs (source sound effects that go in the center channel can all be grouped together, BGs that are only in L/R/Ls/Rs can be grouped together, and so on).

Hope that helps!
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Old 03-23-2009, 01:15 PM
BookSix BookSix is offline
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

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Originally Posted by O.G. Killa View Post
You'll notice when creating new tracks, even in your stereo session, the New Track window gives you the option to do all types of surround tracks.
Thanks, but this actually is not true. When I installed out HD rig we were doing only stereo mixes. When you first launch PT it askes if you what you do and clicking accordingly removes the option of getting 5.1 tracks from then on; just like clicking "do not use RTAS" or "do not use HTDM" would keep protools from accessing these 'features'. So, even when I create a new track, I only have the option of audio, aux, midi, instrument, video and master (mono and stereo only).
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Old 03-23-2009, 03:24 PM
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O.G. Killa O.G. Killa is offline
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BookSix View Post
Thanks, but this actually is not true. When I installed out HD rig we were doing only stereo mixes. When you first launch PT it askes if you what you do and clicking accordingly removes the option of getting 5.1 tracks from then on; just like clicking "do not use RTAS" or "do not use HTDM" would keep protools from accessing these 'features'. So, even when I create a new track, I only have the option of audio, aux, midi, instrument, video and master (mono and stereo only).
Hmmmm... did you check your plugins folder to confirm that the surround mixer plugin is in there. I just assumed (maybe incorrecty), when clicking music only it simply left the surround mixer plugin in the "plugins (unused)" folder.

If it isn't in your plugins folder, try dragging it in and then launch protools and see if it will let you select multichannel tracks. If not then I'm at a loss, maybe someone from digi could offer some words of wisdom.
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Old 03-23-2009, 04:15 PM
BookSix BookSix is offline
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

Thanks for the suggestions! Unfortunately, there is nothing in the unused plugin folder. I know there is some kind of hotkey on launch you can press (kinda like option during Mac bootup allows you to select your boot volume) I just cant remember what it is now. I'll try a few things!

Digi??
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Old 03-23-2009, 10:10 PM
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O.G. Killa O.G. Killa is offline
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

did you check your plugins folder for "surround Mixer" or "surround Dithered Mixer"? If it isn't there, you can probably pull it off the installer?
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Old 03-23-2009, 11:56 PM
TimNielsen TimNielsen is offline
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Default Re: Stereo session to Surround...?

As far as I know, choosing a stereo or a surround option from the beginning just sets the default I/O, it doesn't lock you out in any way, does it, from actually doing surround?

Meaning, if you go to your I/O, can you make a 5.1 output?

And you're saying if you go to make a new track, from the drop down, you only see stereo, nothing wider, no LCR, or Quad, or 5.0 or 5.1? That doesn't make any sense.

That sounds like some weird bug.

Sorry, I don't know the key command to hold down to bring that menu back, hopefully Digi will chime in.
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