Top Ten Pro Tools Shortcuts

The old adage Time Is Money is no more true than in the studio: If you’re slow, you’re not optimizing your moneymaking potential. DAW quick keys are a great way to tighten up your workflow, timemoney.jpgputting often repeated tasks right at your fingertips. I’ve picked ten, often forgotten Pro Tools quick keys that will make you an audio production Ninja and put more $$ in your pocket.

1.  Shift + Cmd + K. This shortcut is great for exporting audio from your regions list for use outside of Pro Tools. This could be  helpful for game audio or isolating sounds for sample sets. First Isolate the region with Cmd + E, or select it in the regions list. Shift + Cmd + K will bring up the Export Options window allowing you to resample, rename and store the file wherever you’d like.

2. Ctl + Opt + Cmd + W. Got clutter? You can use this quick key to clear any floating windows and bring them back when needed.

3. Cmd + Opt + Spacebar. Great for post applications or synchronized transfers, this shortcut puts you in online/record ready. Hot Tip: Be sure to choose “Record Online at Timecode Lock” from the Preference/Operations menu to make Pro Tools automatically drop into record when it sees time code and synch lock is reached

4. Ctl + E. Zooming couldn’t be easier than this. Engage/disengage Zoom Toggle by making a selection in the timeline then pressing Ctl + E, or if you’re in Command Key focus (a-z button in the edit window), you can just press the letter E. Your selection will zoom in to the full width and uppermost position in the edit window for better editing, fading or whatever else you have in mind

5. Opt + C. This shortcut clears peaks across your session, including your controller’s meters.

6. Shift + Cmd + O. If you’re experiencing system problems that require a Pro Tools reboot, getting back to your last-opened session is easy with this shortcut

7. Ctl + (or Shift or Cmd) + MouseClick a region w/Hand Tool. Try these three shortcuts for moving a region to a specific point on the timeline . This is great for replacing sounds at a transient point like gunshots for film FX, drum hits for song production and even for placing reverse reverb effects. Place your  cursor in the timeline wherever you’d like the region to snap to.  Ctl + MouseClick the region you’re moving w/Hand Tool and it will snap to the front of the insertion point. Ctl + Cmd + MouseClick the region you’re moving w/Hand Tool and it will snap to the end of the insertion point. Or you can snap to any point in a region (such as a transient), by first making a sync point by choosing your spot and clicking on Cmd + comma. Then Ctl + Shift your region with the Hand Tools to snap it to that sync point.

8. Shift + Opt + Rtn / Shift + Opt + 3. This series of two shortcuts will quickly select all the audio on a track, then consolidate it. First drop your cursor to the left of your first region, then Shift + Opt + Rtn to select all audio to the right. Continue to hold Shift + Opt and add the number 3 above to consolidate your selection.

9. Shift + Cmd + W. This shortcut closes your session, asking you to save or not, without closing Pro Tools.

10. Asterisk / Forward Slash. These keys on the 10-keypad will drop you into the main counter or the Start/End/Length fields allowing you to quickly enter numbers in those fields

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