Today I smack down a big ol’ myth that you absolutely need Pro Tools to collaborate with other musicians or (gasp!) make money from your home studio. Plus, I answer some great questions about stuff like:

  • Using a side-chained compressor on your mix bus
  • Mixing with the band members present
  • The difference between threshold and ratio on a compressor
  • The weird vertical lines on an EQ plugin
  • What make-up gain on a compressor is really for


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4 Responses to “Ask Joe #114 – Why You Don’t HAVE to Have Pro Tools”

  1. John

    Perfect Joe! Thanks for covering these topics! Time to share this with the person who told me that hahaha

  2. Chris 'face' Janton

    Play a note, now play one an octave higher the frequency has doubled. Another octave higher, doubled again. That’s a logarithmic progression

    The lines typically are an octave apart. Some EQs let you zoom in to see more. One interesting layout (free plugin) that I use is the Voxengo SPAN analyzer. The band between 100-200 is very wide, as is 1K-2K. If we look at where instruments/voices “collide” it is in one of these 2 bands – males between 100-200, females between 1K-2K.

    A great learning tool for me has been the meldaProductions free plugin MEqualizer. It has all sorts of analysis tools built in – watch a sonogram behind a “scope”-like analyzer with notes and frequencies displayed at the peaks. Use the 6 bands of EQ to shape and sculpt the sound.

    In the old days 😉 of 31 band graphic EQs we don’t really notice, but the bands are typically 1/3 octave wide.


    Frequency ranges of voices, etc.

    Interactive Frequency Chart –

  3. Lee

    To clarify why the range of an EQ increases logarithmically it might be worth mentioning that so do the fundamental frequencies of the notes on a piano. Every time you go up an octave, the frequency of the note doubles. So the lowest A on a piano has a fundamental frequency of 27.5, and the next octave up is 55, a “small” increase in frequency. Whereas the A above middle C (A 440) and the A an octave up from that (A 880) is a much larger jump in frequency number. The highest A on a piano has a frequency of 3520hz. I don’t know, I’m not a super technical guy either. But I like your simple explanations. I’ve learned a lot, thanks for the free podcasts.

  4. Chris Kirkpatrick

    Stellar intro again Joe this one and the army one are my favs so far.
    Great points on working with different platforms and sharing files.
    The side chain buss compressor sounds very interesting. I shall experiment as well.
    Thanks for the Podcast, your drums from the other day sounded pretty sweet too.
    Looking forward to hearing some more.


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