Straightforward Tutorial #2 – Side Chain Gating in Pro Tools

Side chain gating has many useful applications in mixing and can be relatively simple to create. One of the most notable uses is by Trevor Horn where he side chained the kick drum to a sampled bass guitar note so that every time the kick was hit, it triggered a bass note to give the kick more power in the lower frequencies – Frankie Goes to Hollywood – Relax

In this tutorial, I will be showing how to side chain a kick drum to a signal generator in Pro Tools 10:

I. First create an audio track with some kick on it and aux input track – I have used a kick sample from the workspace browser – and then duplicate the kick so you have 2 audio tracks and an aux input

II. On the aux input, add a signal generator and then a gate.

III. Set the output of your duplicated kick track to bus1 and rename it as KEY.

IV. Now on the Gate set the key to the bus you just named KEY and remember to enable it!

V. Finally, adjust the parameters of your gate and the intensity and pitch of your signal generator to achieve your desired tone.

For this tutorial I set the signal generator to 50Hz and put it rather loud so you would be able to notice it very easily, however it is best to listen with headphones as laptop speakers do not produce low frequencies very well, at all.

Before

After

I hope you found this useful and please feel free to ask any questions 🙂

Neil

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