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  • Stereo/Panning Question

    I fear this is a bit of a stupid question, but anyway, It's been confusing me, so I have to ask! I'm using Pro Tools LE 7.3 and Special Edition.

    I was under the impression that all the samples are mono..? Why is it I can only load the SE plugin on a stereo track, rather than a mono one?

    When I play a souond, there are differences in the left and right channel, even though the sample is "monophonic". Am I overlooking something really simple?

    Anyway my main question is to do with panning. Since each track is stereo, how should the L/R pan pots on the channel be panned? Say I wanted a harp to the extreme left...should I have both the L and R pan pot at 100 Left? L at 100 and R at 80? Does it make a difference? Is there phasing issues?


  • Welcome Hoboaudio!

    Don't be afraid to ask seemingly "stupid" questions here. The folks in this forum are all friendly and helpful (even if we have some rough language here and there ;-) ...). I know that things can get confusing, especially when certain technical aspects are regarded as self-explanatory, even when they aren't.

    It seems that you mix up "mono" (opposed to "stereo") and "monophonic" (opposed to "polyphonic"). The former refers to the recording-technique employed: All our samples are recorded in stereo, i.e. with two microphones, the same way us humans listen to an instrument with both ears, even when it plays only a single note.

    The latter refers to the ability of synthesizers and sample-players to keep the playing monophonic when more than one key is pressed, thus enabling the player to play legato, maybe even with portamento between the notes. This is what you encounter when you use the unique Legato Performances within our Vienna Instruments. - Of course, these samples are stereo, too.

    During recording, we made all efforts to keep the position of each instrument or ensemble as "neutral" as possible regarding its position within the stereo-soundstage. This means that for a convincing virtual orchestra you have to set the panorama-positions as well as the stereo-width of each instrument / ensemble according to your needs and taste. Your example with the harp is a good one: For a typical symphonic orchestra, I would set ProTools's pan-pots to L100 / L80. For a solo harp in a small ensemble, L50/R50 could be a good starting point.

    You shouldn't run into phase issues. Of course, in technical terms, there _are_ phase differences between the left and the right channel of a stereo recording (otherwise it would be mono!), but this is how it's supposed to be. Just trust your ears! :-)

    All the best,

    /Dietz - Vienna Symphonic Library
  •  Thanks for the quick reply Dietz, that makes perfect sense and clears everything up!