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Topic: OT: Pro Tools goes live

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  1. #1

    OT: Pro Tools goes live

    Just read an article in Mix magazine that I thought would interest all of us who use the computer to make music. Although certainly not the only choice (and not mine, I run Nuendo), Pro Tools is the 900 pound gorilla of digital audio recording in high dollar studios. Nothing new here so far.

    However, in the All Access feature this month, the monitor mix for Greenday's tour is being done on a beta version of an upcoming Pro Tools live console, Venue. Given the high cost of things like Digi's Pro Control console, it's unlikely that those of us here doing live gigs would rush right out and buy one. However, it just struck me as a significant milestone in pro audio.

    Mixing with a computer in the studio is one thing. If it crashes, you tell the band to go outside and burn one, and you beat on the computer with a stick until it's ready to roll again. But trusting a computer based system for a live gig? Now that's pushing the envelope. Particularly when you figure the crowd that Greenday plays to (and I've played Greenday in a lot of smoky rock & roll bars of dubious repute), you reeeeally don't want to be the guy who has to say, "Gee, folks, we're going to have to stop the show while we work on the computer."

    Although they didn't go into tech details, I'm sure something like this would be a closed hardware system and not require them to drag a Mac around. However, closed or not, when you have a computer based system, tons of plug ins and all the potential for excitement that goes with it, I think it says something about the state of the art that a high profile band considers it to be ready for prime time.

    From a techie and cool toys point of view, it's a great time to be a musician! Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go dust off my Marshall...
    Christopher Duncan
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Author of
    Unite the Tribes and The Career Programmer
    www.PracticalUSA.com


  2. #2
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
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    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    Hmmm, Pro Tools ... yeah ... so happy I don't gig anymore. Last band I was in we used sequencers and that was hair graying enough! By the way, didn't U2 use computers during their performances?
    Dusting off the Marshall, eh? I spent the better part on last evening dusting off my drums and cymbals.
    Styxx

  3. #3

    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    I can dig it. High tech (read: high risk) in front of a room full of people in black leather and tatoos. Golly, makes my heart race just thinking about it. Of course, I do have a Marshall, as any good little rocker must (even if it's an empty cabinet ala KISS just for show). Truth of the matter, though, is I've been in love for years with my Rocktron Voodu Valve - a 1 rack space, MIDI controllable guitar preamp that has a 12ax7 tube in the pre gain stage. I can get crisp and clean to warm and fuzzy to Eddie Van Halen melting glass all at the tap of a foot controller, and it's real tone generated by a real tube. Of course, it doesn't look as cool as a stack of Marshalls, but hey...
    Christopher Duncan
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Author of
    Unite the Tribes and The Career Programmer
    www.PracticalUSA.com


  4. #4

    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher Duncan
    I can dig it. High tech (read: high risk) in front of a room full of people in black leather and tatoos. Golly, makes my heart race just thinking about it. Of course, I do have a Marshall, as any good little rocker must (even if it's an empty cabinet ala KISS just for show). Truth of the matter, though, is I've been in love for years with my Rocktron Voodu Valve - a 1 rack space, MIDI controllable guitar preamp that has a 12ax7 tube in the pre gain stage. I can get crisp and clean to warm and fuzzy to Eddie Van Halen melting glass all at the tap of a foot controller, and it's real tone generated by a real tube. Of course, it doesn't look as cool as a stack of Marshalls, but hey...
    But a direct tube pre isn't going to give you that magical rush you feel when standing in front of a nicely cranked tube amp, and the guitar and amp feed off of each other and become a living, breathing, crunchy sustain monster!!

    Jim

  5. #5

    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    Hey, I played a gig (well, more of a jam session) last weekend using nothing but a keyboard and computer-based samples. It was rock(and roll) solid.

    I went with GS3 and played the full VintAudio C7 piano with GigaPulse up and down pedal resonance, Larry Seyer's Acoustic Drum Kit from GS3 with the Beefy Room resonance, and SI's Fender P-Bass.

    I set up my Kurzweil PC88 to have a few patches for various keyboard splits, so I could have drums on the left hand, and piano or bass on the right, full piano, or stacked piano and bass. I mapped the sliders on the keyboard so I could do a real-time mix. I was able to tweak the individual volumes of the drum components to balance one another with my amp/speaker and the room.

    It was a *very* cool experience.

    My next goal is to create some sequences, so I don't need to play like an octopus. (or like cr@p ). I've got QL Brass, so I can add that for the songs (covers) that need it. Maybe I'll add SI's hammond to the mix next time too.

    I got a recommendation to go with Midi Maestro as the live sequencer. I haven't tried it yet, but it's only (a non-pro-tools price of) $49. http://midimaestro.com (I used Sonar a bit, recording drums on the first take, then playing piano the second time through.)

    This could be a lot of fun with the Jazz and Big Band Collection. Add the strings from GPO and play the GPO piano live, and you would really fill out your local garage band.

    As long as you limit your setup, and stay within those bounds, there's no reason to avoid a computer setup. Besides, PCs are cheap. You can always have a backup for those high-wire jobs.

    As a guitarist at heart, it was really fun playing great sounds from the keyboard. And it sure beat just bringing yet another guitar to the party.

    -JF

  6. #6

    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    Quote Originally Posted by mistahamma
    But a direct tube pre isn't going to give you that magical rush you feel when standing in front of a nicely cranked tube amp, and the guitar and amp feed off of each other and become a living, breathing, crunchy sustain monster!!

    Jim
    Oh, I have power amps and speakers. Lots of 'em. Just don't ask why there are four 1400 watt power amps in the control room...
    Christopher Duncan
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Author of
    Unite the Tribes and The Career Programmer
    www.PracticalUSA.com


  7. #7

    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher Duncan
    Oh, I have power amps and speakers. Lots of 'em. Just don't ask why there are four 1400 watt power amps in the control room...
    /eyes the forbidden fruit

    So why are there four 1400 watt power amps in the control room?

    /runs and hides

  8. #8

    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    I'm intrigued as to what benefits a system built upon Pro Tools would have over existing hardware, especially for guitar based bands that don't even go near the area of electronical manipulation.

  9. #9

    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    Quote Originally Posted by Ernstinen
    I found my holy grail when I first plugged my '63 Strat into my Soldano through a 4x12 Marshall Cabinet!!! Woo Hoo!

    Ern
    I found my holy grail when I listened to the playback of my first recording using digital audio, back in the early eighties. WOW! You could not wipe the smile off my face. No more stupid tape hiss. AAAhhhhhhh!
    DPdigitalDan

  10. #10

    Re: OT: Pro Tools goes live

    I found my holy grail when I listened to the playback of my first recording using digital audio, back in the early eighties. WOW! You could not wipe the smile off my face. No more stupid tape hiss. AAAhhhhhhh!
    It's quite ironic really considering how many people are striving to emulate the characteristics of tape in a digital environment these days

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