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Voices in HD

If you work on an HD system, you’ve most likely come to a point where you run out of voices.  When you are trying to reduce the number of voices you are using, knowing exactly what burns a voice will help you to slim down your sessions.

What uses a voice?

– 1 voice is used per channel when entering or leaving the TDM engine.

– Aux tracks DO NOT use voices, unless you are using an RTAS insert across them.  Here are some examples:

  • 5.1 Aux Track – 0 voices
  • 5.1 Aux Track -with RTAS plugin – 12 Voices (6 to the pluigin, 6 back from the plugin)
  • 5.1 aux track – with RTAS, TDM, then another RTAS Plugin – 24 voices (6 out, 6 back, 6 out again, 6 back again

– Audio Tracks with RTAS plugins mixed with TDM plugins.  For example:

  • Mono Audio Track with no plugins – 1 voice
  • Mono Audio track with an RTAS plugin – 1 voice
  • Mono Audio Track with a TDM, then an RTAS plugin – 3 voices (1 to the track, 1 out, 1 back)
  • Mono Audio Track With RTAS, RTAS, TDM, RTAS – 3 voices (Same as above, doesn’t matter how many RTAS plugins you have before your first TDM plugin.)

Questions… Comments… Glaring omissions?

7 Responses to “Voices in HD”

  1. Jon says:

    I didn't know about the 5.1 thing, seems like you can really run out quick.

    The balance of chips & voices has always confused me, why use fewer voices but more chips, or more voices on fewer chips.

  2. @ndy says:

    192 voices is not enough! I hope it gets increased in PT9 with new hardware that contains DSP chips from this decade. I had to learn about all of this the hard way, with a deadline! Good post.

  3. iZLER says:

    Anyone had busses randomly stop working on one side of the mix in a very full session? It's happening to me all the time at the moment. Everything will be working fine, and then suddenly I'll only be getting the left side of one bus. Is that a voice problem?

  4. Major says:

    That's a problem in some versions of PT8. I *think* it was supposedly fixed in 8.0.3 what version are you running?

  5. JB says:

    @iZLER… yep I have seen this in some of my composer's mix rigs. Enable delay comensation.. should solve it 🙂

  6. ggegan says:

    Tracks used for recording use up extra voices to monitor input and playback.

  7. iZLER says:

    Any reason why two seemingly identical tracks would use different amounts of voices?
    eg. I have a bunch of stereo audio tracks with inputs from VE Pro running into them (ie a plug in output). PT tells me I'm running out of voices, so I pull up the system usage window up – I inactivate one track, I get 2 voices back – that makes sense. I inactivate another IDENTICAL stereo audio track, I get four voices back. How does that make sense?

    I'm also getting a lot of PT crashes and whenever I try to relaunch after a crash, my whole computer freezes as PT is getting to the "initiating hardware" stage – anyone think both of these things could be related to a bad pro tools card?


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