I have been blessed with some of the best assistants in the world. I am helpless without them. I like to have the protools session spread out on the console. Nothing unusual, drums and instruments to left, vocals and extra inst to the right. The more I need to move the faders on a track, the closer to the center I want them. (I hate doing levels at the extreme ends of the console. I do about 1/2 the rides in ProTools, and 1/2 on the console. There are a couple of outboard chains they hook up. I like my vocals at the top of PT, and then drums, then instruments. It changes sometimes.
I constantly ask my guys if they like this or that. I use them for creative input, and discuss the mix with them. They get quite involved. I like them to be vocal about things I do well, and things that suck.
I use them to print the stems and passes. We print every track as a stem.
Keeping track of all the hard drives and sessions and sending out copies and sending to mastering is in itself a full time job. I someone wants a word up here or there I let them do that also
You've mentioned a couple of times that you print every track as a stem. I'm very curious about how you go about this. I'd love to hear as much detail as you'd care to go into.
A couple of pointed questions regarding this process:
1. Do you mean that you print each channel (or pair of channels) on the console as a stereo stem through your mix bus chain? Or do you mean that you print literally every single track from Pro Tools through whatever chain it happens to be going through as a stereo stem?
2. Do you monitor through the converters that you will eventually be printing through when you're mixing?
3. Do you print them back into the same Pro Tools session or to another system?
4. When it comes time to do a recall with the stems, where do they return? Do they just get summed in the box? I guess this question would depend on how you print them in the first place...with or without mix bus chain, etc...
5. Assuming you use parallel compression, aural exciting, stereo widening, etc...how do you deal with this in regards to the stems? Are your sends to these devices being derived from the stems or before the stems?
I know that's a lot of questions, but I'm currently in search of the best way to do this myself. I would love to hear any insight you have on this topic. Thanks so much for coming on here and helping us all get better.