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Delay Compensation Explained! (Part 2 of 2)

In Part 1 we discussed the various setting and warning lights of delay compensation.  In part II let’s explore a few more track specific options you have when dealing with delay compensation.When an audio track is record armed, Pro Tools automatically turns OFF delay compensation for that track.  This is desired behavior if you are tracking something and need to monitor off that track with no latency.  There are some cases (such as feeding a mix bus from stems while they are recording) in which you want delay compensation to remain ON when the track is record armed.  To do this Control+Command+Click on the “Cmp” number on the track.  It will turn blue.

Audio Track with Delay Comp Locked On.

On the other hand, Aux tracks always have delay compensation ON.  If you want to turn delay compensation OFF (for example, you are tracking through an aux and need to monitor it without delay) you can Control+Command+Click the “Cmp” Number and delay comp will be bypassed for that track (Grey).

Aux Track with Bypassed Delay Compensation

Sometimes you want to ignore the reported compensation on a track, for example if a track is over budget on delay and you want to compensate manually.  To do this Control+Command+Click on the “dly” number, it will turn grey, and the reported plugin delay on that track will be ignored in delay compensation calculations.

Reported Delay Ignored

There we go… now go compensate for something!

6 Responses to “Delay Compensation Explained! (Part 2 of 2)”

  1. SimonK says:

    Automatic Delay Compensation on Pro Tool 9 doesn't seems to be working when using parallel compression with outboard gear… It lists the delay amount, but I still get a phasy sound… Any workaround??

  2. Major says:

    are you manually compensation for the outboard gear using the hardware insert delay portion of the I/O page? If this is set correctly (check the manual for instructions), you <em>shouldn't</em> have a phasing issue.

  3. pwillis says:

    When recording vocals, there’s enough latency to really screw a singer up so I turn delay comp on but unfortunately it creates another problem: I can’t use any effects for my singer to monitor whilst recording, Any suggestions?

  4. Alex Alvarez says:

    Hello, I have a question regarding delay compensation. When i edit the takes, is it better to switch off delay compensation to make sure the tracks are aligned? I have found out that sometimes when i switch machine ( working on HD and sometimes editing in native mode at home ), when delay compensation was switched on, it all is out of synch when listening in native mode…

  5. Major says:

    Delay comp should ALWAYS be on as a general rule of thumb (there are exceptions but not many). There shouldn’t be problems switching between HD and Native… make sure your native rig is not on the MAX compensation setting as this is still buggy in some versions of PT10. Also make sure your plugins are all up to date, these will sometimes mis-report delay information to protools resulting in things being out of sync.

  6. Brian says:

    I do a lot of bussing in mixes, and then need to print stems. In my current session I’m trying to mix down my drumset to free up processing power. I notice that when I bus the DRUM MASTER aux to an audio track to create the DRUM STEM, and then I arm the DRUM STEM track, the delay compensation on the DRUM MASTER aux goes from 4866 to 0 and turns grey. I want protools to continue compensating the same way when I print this. How do I deal with that? if the only solution is dragging the DRUM STEM audio file up, how do I know how far to move it?


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