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ProTools going haywire.Has this ever happened to any of you fine engineers out there?

Ok,it seems as if ProTools has gone haywire.

First off here is my operating system info

ProTools HD-2 running 7.3.1 on a Mac Pro Tower(Intel)

192 interface.

Here is what is happeneing.

The other day I noticed after I had spent 2 hours of hand tuning 3 different vocal parts (hitting apple-S after every few vocal lines) I went to work on my drum mix and all of a sudden after I got the drums where I like them,I un-soloed the drums to listen to where I was headed with the mix and the vocal parts that I had spent all that time on were gone in spots. What I mean is The HI Harm part had some of the files still there and the lead vox and the low harm parts were gone. There was just blank regions with crossfades where the audio use to be. I checked my Disk Allocation(as I ALWAYS do before recording) and it was in tact.

I thought this was just a mistake on my part and thought I must have done something to cause it until it happened again today and I KNOW that something is wrong somewhere.

Another thing is happening as well.

On certain sessions my overdubs are starting to advance forward by about 70 milsec after every pass. It only happens on certain sessions. I tracked three songs the other day and the 2 sessions were fine but only one is where I am having problems. I created each session from the same templet that I have set up so I can't figure out what's happening between the sessions. I tried shutting down PT and restarting and still no luck. What should I try next?

I know there are some great engineers on here and in Nashville,I would appreciate some of your help.

Thank you in advance for taking the time to answer either or both of these questions.


Tom Drenon


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Well, since no one else has replied, I'll take a few guesses at the issue. I can't say I've had these same issues, because I've not. So it might be best to have me or someone else that knows HD to check it out in person. I'm happy to come over and give it a try. Sometimes it helps to see it in person and figure out what is going on.

My first guess is that you might have the "delay compensation" on during your sessions. That'd potentially cause the lag on your overdubs. It also might be some odd selection of a tool, like a slip tool that is set to automatically advance your cursor? Or is the actual audio advancing each time? Is it cumulative? Or is it just consistent? Meaning, if you do four overdubs, is the fourth attempt now 280ms advanced from the original position? Or is the 9th one still only 70ms advanced? And by advanced, do you mean it's earlier in the time line, or later in the time line from where it should be?

Besides making sure your delay compensation engine is OFF during tracking and overdubbing, you'll want to make sure your disk allocation and hardware buffer settings are set right. Higher settings result in greater latency. But higher settings also allow for greater capacity. If you're using a single 192, that's fine, but how many HD cards? How much RAM are you using? THis could also be an issue. Check the "about this mac" and look at "more info" and then look under the hardware tab. You'll see "Memory." Click on it. You'll want to see that your ram is all operational and also that if you have any that's not functioning, that it's removed from the chain. You'll also want to make sure that the RAM is installed in the correct sequence, for example, with bigger chips installed in the first sequences. Each MAC Pro has it's own best sequence, depending on how your risers are configured. Apple's support site has the correct information on RAM seating for each model and each year.

Also, are you using a second disk drive for recording? Make sure you're not attempting to record on your system drive, as this is an issue. PT records in one straight line on a platter of a hard drive. If your system is low on RAM, loading program information constantly to RAM, and then trying to write new information on a single drive all at one time, it's going to do one of two things... 1. Crash. 2. Slow down. Which would both result in a loss of information. This could also explain dropped data. The data could in fact be there, but the disk hasn't cataloged it's location correctly. Close the session and reopen the session. When you do so, it'll prompt you that you are missing regions, and you want it to look for those missing files for you.

Consolidate finished tracks into a single file. Highlight the entire track and command it to consolidate them. Lots of benefits to doing this.

What tuning software are you using? I don't know auto-tune all that well any more, but with Melodyne, you can delete the entire file underneath the plug in once you've "transferred" it into melodyne for manipulation. You'd still hear what's in the plug in, in the correct time line. I'd not recommend doing this, but it's doable for sure.

Now, what questions does that bring up?

Hey Pete,thanks for the reply.

When I first got the PT system I ran a test ( session) to the Mac Hardrive but had long since trashed and dumped that session so it is not taking up any room on the system drive.

I have an HD-2 system. Pete, As far as the regions advancing,they are advancing each time after a recorded pass. I am not sure of it being cumulative because I have adjusted them each time after I play back and listen.

I am using external hardrives for sure. I have delay compensation turned on. I also tried turning it off and setting different preferences no no avail.

I can't figure what is happening between the three (songs)session tracked at the same time(day).

Two songs are fine with no issues with the regions NOT moving but the one song has issues with the overdubs moving (forward in time by about 70 mil sec).

 I tried closing the session and reopening it but nothing seems to work.

I had even consolidated one of the tracks and renamed one of the files fortunately because I was able to drag it back into the session fairly easy. I usually consolidate and rename as I finish working with files i just was in the middle of working with them when the vanished.

I will check the "about this Mac" tab and see what if anything is going on there. 

I thought this may have been a problem that someone had had before,so much for an easy

I have 2 gig of ram in the mac but you've got me thinking maybe I need more. OR maybe I should just go ahead and up-date to 9.

Thank you Pete, you have givin me a place to start, I will start with your suggestions but I may just take you up on your offer.



I said 2 gig of ram but that doesn't sound right. I'll check and get back to ya.



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