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Exercise 6: Change Timebase

When we created our new session at the beginning of this chapter, we did not choose a tempo, which means we’ve been using the default tempo of 120 beats per minute.

  1. View your tempo. Open the Transport window now and look at the Tempo field. Also look at the Tempo ruler in the Edit window. Both show you that we are using the default tempo of 120 BPM.

  2. Create a new track. Highlight the Kick track’s name and then create a new mono audio track—but this time, select Samples instead of Ticks as the type of track.

    When you highlight a track name and then create a new track, Pro Tools places the newly created track below the one you have highlighted. Name the new track “KickTest.”

    Notice on the bottom-left corner of the Kick track there is a tiny green metronome. This tells us that this track is correctly set to Ticks rather than Samples. The KickTest track, on the other hand, has a tiny blue clock on the bottom-left corner. This new track is a Samples track. Make sure all of your tracks except the new KickTest track have the green metronome icon.

    • Track Timebases: Reference Guide, p. 234

  3. Copy the kick. Double-click the Zoomer to make sure the entire song is showing. Choose the Selector and triple-click on the first Kick track. (Triple-clicking highlights the entire track.) Now hit 170fig_01.jpg+C/Ctrl+C to copy this track.

  4. Paste the Kick. With the Selector, click on the empty KickTest track and press Return/Enter. This places your cursor at the beginning of the KickTest track. Press 170fig_01.jpg+V/Ctrl+V to paste. The same exact waveforms from the Kick track show up in the new KickTest track.

  5. Change the tempo. In the Transport window, turn off the Conductor. Type “90” into the Tempo field and press Return/Enter. Now look at the waveforms in the Edit window. Everything has moved, except the new KickTest track.

  6. Play and mute. Play back the song and hear the slower tempo. Everything is correct, except our new Samples-based KickTest track. Mute the new track. Now everything should sound fine.

    This demonstrates why we previously chose Ticks as opposed to Samples. When you create a track and make it Ticks-based, you are telling that track’s regions to follow the set tempo. If you change the tempo, the regions move with the tempo change.
  7. Change KickTest to a Ticks-based track. Click on the blue clock icon and change this track to Ticks. Nothing moved, right? If we had changed the track to Ticks before we made the tempo change, everything would have been fine. But you cannot change a track to Ticks after you make a tempo change and expect the track to move.

  8. Delete KickTest. Highlight the KickTest filename. Go to the Track menu and choose Delete.

    A window opens with a yellow Yield sign. It’s warning you, “Hey, this track has regions on it—do you know what you’re about to do?” Go ahead, click OK. The track will disappear, never to be seen again.
  9. Save. As always, use 170fig_01.jpg+S/Ctrl+S to save your session.

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