Pro Tools templates make you & your collaborators lives easier, FACT.
I have always used a variety of session templates for recording & mixing stages, but have always tended to start with a blank state when it comes to writing. Since starting on a new project recently, I spent some time creating a template to load up when a writing session starts, keeping all my routing consistent, so that I can swap between projects quickly and be sure everything just works. It also means that if I want to put a filter sweep on all synths/drums/music I can quickly programme this in as all automation lanes are set up in advance, meaning I can get onto the next idea quicker.
Download the template Pro Tools Writing Template & IO Config
References – At the start of a session I tend to spend some time listening to tracks to get a feel for direction & production techniques etc… I import all of these references into separate playlists to be able to quickly audition – This is routed to the output & not the submix so you can listen without any stereo bus processing.
Submix – Below the reference track is an Aux acting as my “Master Channel”. This lets me quickly print a bounce, or add a send for a rough monitor mix for instrument/vocal tracking. It is also where I can apply some master processing to get things right at the very beginning.
Drums, Music, Vox & FX – The next few channels are Aux’s for all your drums, musical parts, vox & FX with labelled I/O routing so as and when tracks are added they can quickly be routed to their assigned aux for group processing etc…
FX Channels – These will always change, but having them there when you load up make adding a little room sound as quick as possible.
I also have added some basic marks at some typical bar values, so that I can quickly copy & paste sections etc… I never stick to the exact structure, and instead add some bars here & there and move the markers accordingly, but is definitely useful for reming yourself of how the track progresses etc…
I have a made an I/O set up & included this too. This is essentially there for sharing projects with collaborators, as it helps make sure they route their parts in the same system, so that all group processing is added as standard…
I have set the zoom presets as follows :
- 1 Bar – Building beats editing parts etc…
- 2 Bar – Useful for working on transitions.
- 4 Bar – Good for working on loops.
- 16 Bar – Ideal for focusing on a verse/chorus.
- Entire track – For the glory listen!