The Track Hack – Creating Track Presets in Pro Tools

Create Track Presets in Pro Tools

Have you ever wished that there was a way to import track preset templates in Pro Tools 11? I was digging around and found this little article on creating Pro Tools Track Presets over at Pro Tools Expert. Thank you Russ and Phillip Nichols!  This is just genius.

Create a Track Presets Folder in Pro Tools under Documents

If you are using Pro Tools 11, here is the step by step:

Go to Documents > Pro Tools and create a folder titled “Track Presets”. If you want, you can even create sub folders for Master, Instruments, Vocals and so on. You can always go back later and create the subfolders.

create track presets pro tools

Now, Open up a Pro Tools session where you REALLY like what you have going on on a certain track. In my example, I wanted to save my Master Buss setup complete with my Slate Virtual Buss Compressor and iZotope Ozone 5 with all the settings for a Bluegrass song I was mixing at the time.

Select the track you want to make into a Track Preset. Go the the File menu under Export and select “Selected Tracks as New Session”.

create track presets pro tools

Ignore the screen that comes up asking HOW you want to save this (press OK).

Save Session Copy

Navigate to the folder you created (Documents > Pro Tools > Track Presets) and Save it there.

Renaming the file so that it will work

Next, navigate back to your Track Presets folder and find the file you just saved. It will have a .ptx extension on it. You’ll have to rename that file with a different extension. Simply change the .ptx to a .ptxt (just add the “t”).

create track presets pro tools

Press “enter” or “return” key and the Finder will ask if you are sure you want to change the extension from “.ptx” to “.ptxt’?”

Click “use .ptxt”

create track presets pro tools

Now let’s take our new Pro Tools Track Preset for a test drive

I know you want to see if this will really work now, right? (I know I was still skeptical). So let’s see if it works.

Open a session and Create a New Track (Shift + Command + N). Now in addition to Audio Track, Aux Input, etc., you should see more options.

create track presets pro tools

Select Master and then all the Track Presets that are saved there should appear.

create track presets pro tools

To Recap..

  1. Create a “Track Presets” folder (with sub folders if you wish) in Documents > Pro Tools
  2. Back in Pro Tools, find and select “preset worthy” track or set of tracks to save as a preset.
  3. Go to File > Export > Selected Tracks as New Session and export it somewhere in your “Track Presets” Folder
  4. Navigate to that folder and rename your Preset to a “.ptxt” file
  5. You’re done!

Honestly, I don’t know why Pro Tools doesn’t document Track Presets!

Note for Pro Tools 7 to 9

If you want to use this Track Hack to be able to save Track Presets in Pro Tools 7, Pro Tools 8 or Pro Tools 9, Just create the “Track Presets” folder under Applications > Avid > Pro Tools and this will work for you.

Here is a youtube video on track presets.

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