Pro Tools Wizard
If you want to be a Pro Tools wizard or simply save time on your mixing, learning keyboard shortcuts is a must! Not only will they make you look more professional in front of your clients, they will speed up your mixing efficiency and reduce the amount of time following the mouse cursor around the screen. Let’s examine some common and useful shortcuts, and how they can be utilised.
Must Know Pro Tools Shortcuts
Bring up the new track dialogue
Mac: (Command+Shift+N) Windows: (Ctrl+Shift+N)
After opening a new session, this is one of the first things you will need to do. This shortcut command is especially useful during recordings.
Assigning Inputs and Outputs
Change parameter on ALL: Mac: (Option and click on Input/Output) Windows: (Alt and click on Input/Output)
Cascade ALL Tracks sequentially: Mac: (Option+Command and click Input/Output) Windows: (Alt+Ctrl and click on Input/Output)
Mac: (Command+Z) Windows: (Ctrl+Z)
This should be the first one you memorise.
Mac: (F6 & F7) or (F7 & F8) Windows: (F6 & F7) or (F7 & F8)
The smart tool is like a Swiss army knife for Pro Tools. The function of the smart tools changes depending on where you place the mouse over a clip. The available tools are: Selector, Grabber, and Trim, and you can also perform fades and crossfades.
Focus on Clip
Mac: (Option+F) Windows: (Alt+F)
To zoom in horizontally on the Edit selection without affecting vertical zoom.
Mac: (Option+E) Windows: (Alt+E)
Cut a clip into two clips.
Mac: (Shift+Cmnd+I) Windows: (Shift+Ctrl+I)
Allows you to import audio files or clips into your Pro Tools session.
Strip Silence Dialogue
Mac: (Cmnd+U) Windows: (Ctrl+U)
Analyzes audio selections across multiple tracks, and removes (or extracts) any area of silence.
Switch between Mix and EDIT windows
Mac: (Cmnd+=) Windows: (Ctrl+=)
Unless you are running dual monitors, you will need to switch between the Mix and Edit windows often. Memorise this now.
Mac: (Cmnd+G) Windows: (Ctrl+G)
Groups are useful for editing several tracks together in the same way.
Consolidate a Clip
Mac: (Shift+Option+3) Windows: (Shift+Alt+3)
This is used when you want to consolidate multiple clips into a single clip. Very useful once a track or track range reaches a satisfactory state such as a verse or chorus.
Mac: (R (Zoom Out) T (Zoom In)) Windows: (R (Zoom Out) T (Zoom In))
Lets you zoom in and out horizontally on track data.
- The less you use your mouse, the quicker you will be able to navigate in Pro Tools
- Have a printed list of shortcuts nearby to refer to
- You can purchase purpose made colour coded keyboards, or keyboard covers for Pro Tools here.
Windows and Mac Keyboard Conversions
Cmnd (Mac) = Ctrl (Win)
Option (Mac) = Alt (Win)
Ctrl (Mac) = Start (Win)
Shift is the same in both
What are your favorite, most used Pro Tools keyboard shortcuts?
Tip This Post
Enjoyed this article? Please help by making a small Bitcoin donation to help fund website maintenance and future articles. Thank you.