Using the pok with a Pro Tools rig
The POK is a wireless foot controller that can expedite the recording process considerably. In this example, I’m going to take you through the steps required to record a simple acoustic guitar and vocal performance running ProTools with the POK.
Setting up your Pro Tools / pok recording environment
The very first thing we need to do is connect the POK’s wireless USB receiver to your computer and press any button on the POK. This pairs the POK with the receiver. There is no need to install any type of driver, as your computer will automatically see the POK as another keyboard.
Next let’s set up our recording environment. All you’re going to need for this is a microphone, mic stand, and mic cable. Plug the cable from your mic into Mic Input 1 of your interface. A good pair of headphones, comfortable chair, and line of sight access to your DAW monitors is all you’ll need once we get started.
Preparing the Pro Tools session
From here, all you have to do is open ProTools and create a new session. Once you’ve created your session, let’s open up some tracks. Hold down Shift, Command and N to open the “New Tracks” dialog box. Let’s create 2 Mono Audio Tracks. Then hit the + icon on the right and create 1 Stereo Master Fader. Next, name the audio tracks. To name an audio track, just double click the current name (Audio 1 and Audio 2), and begin typing in the new name. In this case, we’re going to name them Acoustic Guitar and Lead Vocal respectively. The last step in getting the tracks ready for recording is to select your inputs. Remember we connected the microphone to Input 1, so select Interface 1 (Mono) as your input source on both tracks.
Recording the acoustic guitar track, using the pok to control Pro Tools
Now we’re ready to record. The POK comes from the factory with the ProTools settings already loaded, so it’s ready to go the moment you take it out of the box. Let’s arm the Acoustic Guitar channel by clicking on the ‘record arm’ button which is just left of the solo button in edit view, or directly above the mute button in mix view. It’ll flash red when the channel is armed.
Now, get comfortable with your guitar in front of the mic, strum it a few times and set your input level so that you have enough level going in, but not enough to clip the preamp. Place the POK at your feet so you can comfortably access the 8 buttons. When you’re ready to record, press the top left button once. This button is identified by the red circle which represents “Record.” After you press it once, you’ll notice that ProTools is now recording on the Acoustic Guitar track. Play the song down. If, after you’ve recorded a pass, you want to undo that recording, press the button that says “Undo.” If you want to scroll to a specific point in the song and punch in, use the “Rewind” and “Fastforward” buttons and then press the “Record” button. You can listen down to your recording by hitting the “Play” button. All these functions are clearly marked on your POK.
When you’re done, make sure you save your files. To save, simply press the function button (top right button), and then press “Save” (bottom right button).