Setup Guide
Mbox® 2
Version 8.0.x
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all rights reserved. Under copyright laws, this guide may not be
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Avid.
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003, 96 I/O, 96i I/O, 192 Digital I/O, 192 I/O, 888|24 I/O,
882|20 I/O, 1622 I/O, 24-Bit ADAT Bridge I/O, AudioSuite,
Avid, Avid DNA, Avid Mojo, Avid Unity, Avid Unity ISIS,
Avid Xpress, AVoption, Axiom, Beat Detective, Bomb Factory,
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D-Fi, D-fx, D-Show, D-Verb, DAE, Digi 002, DigiBase,
DigiDelivery, Digidesign, Digidesign Audio Engine, Digidesign
Intelligent Noise Reduction, Digidesign TDM Bus, DigiDrive,
DigiRack, DigiTest, DigiTranslator, DINR, D-Show, DV Toolkit,
EditPack, Eleven, HD Core, HD Process, Hybrid, Impact,
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MediaComposer, MIDI I/O, MIX, MultiShell, Nitris, OMF,
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Pro Tools, Pro Tools|HD, Pro Tools LE, QuickPunch, Recti-Fi,
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Smack!, SoundReplacer, Sound Designer II, Strike, Structure,
SYNC HD, SYNC I/O, Synchronic, TL Aggro, TL AutoPan, TL
Drum Rehab, TL Everyphase, TL Fauxlder, TL In Tune, TL
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Disposal of Waste Equipment by Users in the
European Union
Product features, specifications, system requirements, and
availability are subject to change without notice.
Guide Part Number 9320-59106-00 REV B October, 2009
This symbol on the product or its packaging indicates that this
product must not be disposed of with other waste. Instead, it
is your responsibility to dispose of your waste equipment by
handing it over to a designated collection point for the recycling
of waste electrical and electronic equipment. The separate
collection and recycling of your waste equipment at the time of
disposal will help conserve natural resources and ensure that
it is recycled in a manner that protects human health and the
environment. For more information about where you can drop
off your waste equipment for recycling, please contact your
local city recycling office or the dealer from whom you
purchased the product.
Warning
This product contains chemicals, including
lead, known to the State of California to
cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm. Wash hands after handling.
Communications and Safety Regulation Information
Compliance Statement
This model Mbox 2 complies with the following standards
regulating interference and EMC:
• FCC Part 15 Class B
• EN 55022 Class B
• EN 55204 Class B
• AS/NZS 3548 Class B
• CISPR 22 Class B
Radio and Television Interference
This equipment has been tested and found to comply with the
limits for a Class B digital device, pursuant to Part 15 of the
FCC Rules.
DECLARATION OF CONFORMITY
We Digidesign,
2001 Junipero Serra Boulevard, Suite 200
Daly City, CA 94014 USA
Communication Statement
NOTE: This equipment has been tested and found to comply
with the limits for a Class B digital device, pursuant to Part
15 of the FCC Rules. These limits are designed to provide
reasonable protection against harmful interference in a
residential installation. This equipment generates, uses,
and can radiate radio frequency energy and, if not installed
and used in accordance with the instructions, may cause
harmful interference to radio communications. However,
there is no guarantee that interference will not occur in a
particular installation. If this equipment does cause harmful
interference to radio or television reception, which can be
determined by turning the equipment off and on, the user is
encouraged to try and correct the interference by one or
more of the following measures:
• Reorient or locate the receiving antenna.
• Increase the separation between the equipment and
receiver.
• Connect the equipment into an outlet on a circuit
different from that to which the receiver is connected.
• Consult the dealer or an experienced radio/TV technician
for help.
tel: 650-731-6300
declare under our sole responsibility that the product
Mbox 2
complies with Part 15 of FCC Rules.
Mbox 2
Operation is subject to the following two conditions: (1) this
device may not cause harmful interference, and (2) this
device must accept any interference received, including
interference that may cause undesired operation.
Any modifications to the unit, unless expressly approved by
Avid, could void the user's authority to operate the equipment.
Canadian Compliance Statement:
This Class B digital apparatus complies with Canadian ICES003.
Cet appareil numérique de la classe B est conforme à la norme
NMB-003 du Canada.
Australian Compliance
European Compliance
Digidesign is authorized to apply the CE (Conformité
Europénne) mark on this compliant equipment thereby
declaring conformity to EMC Directive 89/336/EEC and Low
Voltage Directive 73/23/EEC.
contents
Chapter 1. Welcome to Mbox 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
Mbox 2 Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
Pro Tools LE Capabilities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
System Requirements and Compatibility . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Conventions Used in This Guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Chapter 2. Installing Pro Tools on Mac . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Installation Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Installing Pro Tools LE and Connecting Your Interface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Launching Pro Tools LE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
Additional Software on the Pro Tools Installer Disc . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
Uninstalling Pro Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Chapter 3. Installing Pro Tools on Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Installation Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Installing Pro Tools LE and Connecting Your Interface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Launching Pro Tools LE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Additional Software on the Pro Tools Installer Disc . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Uninstalling Pro Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Chapter 4. Configuring Your Pro Tools System. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Starting Up or Shutting Down Your System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Configuring Pro Tools LE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
Optimizing a Mac System for Pro Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Optimizing a Windows System for Pro Tools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25
Chapter 5. Mbox 2 Hardware Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
Mbox 2 Front Panel Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
Mbox 2 Back Panel Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32
Contents
v
Chapter 6. Making Hardware Connections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
Connecting Headphones . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
Connecting a Sound System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
Connecting a Recorder for Mixdowns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36
Connecting Audio Inputs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36
Connecting a Microphone . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37
Connecting Instruments to the Mbox 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
MIDI Connections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42
Appendix A. Configuring AMS (Mac OS X Only) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
Audio MIDI Setup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
MIDI Patch Name Support. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
Appendix B. Configuring MIDI Studio Setup (Windows Only) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
MIDI Studio Setup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
MIDI Patch Name Support. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49
Appendix C. Hard Drive Configuration and Maintenance. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
Avoid Recording to the System Drive . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
Supported Drive Formats and Drive Types. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
Formatting an Audio Drive. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52
Partitioning Drives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
Defragmenting an Audio Drive. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54
Using Mac Drives on Windows Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55
Hard Disk Storage Space . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56
vi
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Appendix D. Troubleshooting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57
Backing Up Your Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57
Common Issues . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58
Performance Factors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58
Before You Call Technical Support . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
Appendix E. Resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61
About the Pro Tools Guides . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61
About www.digidesign.com . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62
Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63
Contents
vii
viii
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
chapter 1
Welcome to Mbox 2
Welcome to the Mbox® 2 audio and MIDI production system.
• Up to a total of four channels of input, using
analog and digital inputs simultaneously
Mbox 2 and Pro Tools LE® provide your
USB-equipped computer with two channels of
analog audio input and output, two channels of
digital audio input and output, MIDI In and Out
ports, analog monitor outs, and a headphone
output with front panel level control. Mbox 2
provides professional-quality mic preamps and
24-bit analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog
converters.
• One MIDI In and one MIDI Out port, providing 16 MIDI input channels and 16 MIDI output channels
Mbox 2 Features
The Mbox 2 provides the following:
• Two channels of analog audio input with microphone preamps and switchable 48V phantom power
• Analog input jacks include two XLR and
two 1/4-inch connectors (one TRS, one TS),
with switchable Mic, Line, and DI levels
• –20 dB pad available separately on each analog input channel
• Two 1/4-inch TRS analog monitor outputs
• 24-bit A/D and D/A converters, supporting
sample rates of 44.1 kHz and 48 kHz
• Zero-latency analog record monitoring with
adjustable balance between input and playback
• Mono switch for enhanced monitoring of single-channel input sources (does not affect recording)
• 1/4-inch (TRS) stereo headphone output with
adjustable level control
• USB-powered operation
Mbox 2 will not function properly if connected to a passive USB hub. If you need to
use a hub for other USB peripherals, use a
powered hub or a separate dedicated USB
port for Mbox 2 to function properly.
• Two channels of S/PDIF digital input and output
• S/PDIF inputs are available independently,
in addition to analog inputs 1–2
• S/PDIF outputs mirror analog outs 1–2
Chapter 1: Welcome to Mbox 2
1
Pro Tools LE Capabilities
Pro Tools LE on Mac or Windows provides the
following capabilities with Mbox 2:
• Playback of up to 48 mono or stereo digital
audio tracks, or a combination of playing
back and recording up to 48 mono or stereo
digital audio tracks, depending on the capabilities of your computer.
System Requirements and
Compatibility
Mbox 2 can be used with a qualified Windows
or Mac computer running Pro Tools LE software.
A DVD drive is required to use the Pro Tools Installer disc.
• Up to 128 audio tracks (with up to 48 active
tracks), 128 Auxiliary Input tracks, 64 Master Fader tracks, 256 MIDI tracks, and 32 Instrument tracks per session.
We can only assure compatibility and provide
support for hardware and software it has tested
and approved.
• 16-bit or 24-bit audio resolution, at sample
rates up to 48 kHz.
For complete system requirements and a list of
qualified computers, operating systems, hard
drives, and third-party devices, refer to the latest
information on our website:
• Non-destructive, random-access editing
and mix automation.
• Audio processing with up to 10 inserts per
track (RTAS® plug-ins or hardware inserts)
www.digidesign.com/compatibility
• Up to 10 sends per track.
MIDI Requirements
• Up to 32 internal mix busses.
Mbox 2 includes one MIDI In port and one
MIDI Out port, providing 16 channels of MIDI
input and 16 channels of MIDI output.
Pro Tools LE uses your computer’s CPU to
mix and process audio tracks (host processing). Computers with faster clock speeds
yield higher track counts and more plug-in
processing.
If you require additional MIDI ports, add a MIDI
interface to your system.
USB MIDI interfaces work effectively with
Pro Tools systems on Windows or Mac. Serial
MIDI interfaces are supported on Windows systems only.
Only USB MIDI interfaces are compatible
with Pro Tools systems for Mac OS X.
Modem-to-serial port adapters and serial
MIDI devices are not supported.
For a list of supported adapters, visit our website
at:
www.digidesign.com/compatibility
2
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Hard Drive Requirements
For optimal audio recording and playback, all
Pro Tools systems require one or more qualified
drives.
For a list of qualified hard drives, visit our website:
www.digidesign.com/compatibility
If you are using an ATA/IDE or FireWire hard
drive, initialize your drive with the Disk Utility
application included with Apple System software (Mac) or the Windows Disk Management
(Windows).
For more information, see Appendix C, “Hard
Drive Configuration and Maintenance.”
Avoid Recording to the System Drive
Recording to your system drive is not recommended. Recording and playback on a system
drive may result in lower track counts and fewer
plug-ins.
Conventions Used in This
Guide
Our guides use the following conventions to indicate menu choices and key commands:
:
Convention
Action
File > Save
Choose Save from the File
menu
Control+N
Hold down the Control key
and press the N key
Control-click
Hold down the Control key
and click the mouse button
Right-click
Click with the right mouse
button
The names of Commands, Options, and Settings
that appear on-screen are in a different font.
The following symbols are used to highlight important information:
User Tips are helpful hints for getting the
most from your Pro Tools system.
Important Notices include information that
could affect your data or the performance of
your system.
Shortcuts show you useful keyboard or
mouse shortcuts.
Cross References point to related sections in
this guide and our other guides.
Chapter 1: Welcome to Mbox 2
3
4
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
chapter 2
Installing Pro Tools on Mac
This chapter contains information for Mac systems only. If you are installing Pro Tools on a
Windows computer, see Chapter 3, “Installing
Pro Tools on Windows.”
Before installing this version of Pro Tools,
refer to the Read Me information included
on the Pro Tools Installer disc.
Installation Overview
Installation of the Mbox 2 on a Mac includes the
following steps:
1 “Installing Pro Tools LE and Connecting Your
Interface” on page 5.
2 “Launching Pro Tools LE” on page 7.
Installing Pro Tools LE and
Connecting Your Interface
Before connecting your Pro Tools LE interface to
the computer, you need to install Pro Tools LE
software.
Do not start this procedure with your
Mbox 2 connected to your computer.
To install Pro Tools LE on Mac OS X:
1 Make sure you are logged in as an Administra-
tor for the account where you want to install
Pro Tools.
For details on Administrator privileges in
Mac OS X, see your Apple OS X documentation.
3 Configuring your system for improved perfor-
mance (see Chapter 4, “Configuring Your
Pro Tools System”).
2 Insert the Pro Tools LE Installer disc in your
4 Making audio connections to the Mbox 2 (see
3 On the Installer disc, locate and double-click
Chapter 6, “Making Hardware Connections”).
Install Pro Tools LE.mpkg.
DVD drive.
The Pro Tools Installer disc includes additional software for your system. For more information, see “Additional Software on the
Pro Tools Installer Disc” on page 7.
Install Pro Tools LE.mpkg icon
Chapter 2: Installing Pro Tools on Mac
5
4 Follow the on-screen instructions to proceed
Installation Options
with installation.
5 Click Continue each time you are prompted.
6 At the Installation Type page, do one of the
following:
• To install all Pro Tools application files and
free plug-in suites (and associated content),
leave the default Installation options selected and click Continue.
– or –
• Select (or deselect) a custom configuration
of Installation options (see “Installation
Options” on page 6) and click Continue.
7 Click Install.
8 If prompted, enter your Administrator pass-
word and click OK to authenticate the installation.
9 Follow the remaining on-screen instructions.
10 When installation is complete, click Restart.
11 After the computer has started, connect the
small end of the included USB cable to the USB
port on Mbox 2 and connect the other end to
any available USB port on your computer.
If the USB LED on the front panel of the
Mbox 2 does not illuminate, try unplugging
the USB cable from the Mbox 2 USB port,
and plugging it back in. If the USB LED still
does not illuminate, shut down the computer, disconnect Mbox 2 and start the
computer. Once the computer has fully restarted, reconnect Mbox 2.
Mbox 2 may not function properly if connected to a USB hub. If you need to use a
hub for other USB peripherals, connect the
hub to a separate USB port; Mbox 2 must be
connected to a dedicated port on the computer in order to function properly.
6
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Pro Tools LE Options
To install a subset of Pro Tools software and
plug-ins (and associated content), click the reveal triangle for the Pro Tools LE 8.0 option in
the installer, and deselect any of the following
options that you do not want installed.
Application Files (Required for Pro Tools) Installs the Pro Tools application and supporting
library files needed to run Pro Tools. This option
also installs the Digidesign CoreAudio Driver.
This option must be selected to install Pro Tools.
DigiRack Plug-Ins Installs free plug-ins including
DigiRack plug-ins, free Bomb Factory plug-ins,
and Eleven Free, TL Utilities, D-Fi, and Maxim
plug-ins.
Pro Tools Creative Collection Installs a set of free
RTAS effects plug-ins and virtual instrument
plug-ins (including 4.4 GB of associated sample
content). For more information, see the Creative
Collection Plug-ins Guide.
Additional Options
The Pro Tools installer provides the following
additional options to install along with
Pro Tools software and plug-ins.
Digidesign CoreAudio Driver This option installs
the Digidesign CoreAudio Driver, which lets
you use qualified audio interfaces with thirdparty applications that support the CoreAudio
Driver standard.
Avid Video Engine This option lets you integrate
Avid® video peripherals (such as the Avid
Mojo® with your Pro Tools system).
MIDI I/O Driver The MIDI I/O™ Driver is required if you are using the Digidesign MIDI I/O
interface.
Launching Pro Tools LE
When launching Pro Tools LE the first time, you
are prompted to enter an authorization code to
validate your software. (The code begins with
the letters DIGI.)
To authorize Pro Tools LE software:
1 Make sure Mbox 2 is connected to your com-
puter.
Additional Software on the
Pro Tools Installer Disc
The Pro Tools LE Installer disc provides additional software for your system, including audio
drivers (for playing other audio applications
through your Digidesign hardware) and a
Pro Tools demo session.
Check your Pro Tools Installer disc for additional software and installers.
2 Click the Pro Tools LE icon in the Dock (or
double-click the application icon in the
Pro Tools folder inside the Digidesign folder).
Third-Party Applications and
Plug-ins
3 Enter the authorization code in the dialog
Your Pro Tools package also includes several free
applications and plug-ins from selected third
party developers. Once you've completed your
Pro Tools installation, you can install these separately. Go to the Additional Files/3rd Party
Content folder on the Pro Tools LE Installer
disc.
(making sure to type it exactly as printed, and
observing any spaces and capitalization), then
click Validate. (Your authorization code is located on the inside front cover of this guide.)
4 Use the Quick Start dialog to do one of
the following:
• Create a new session from template.
• Create a new blank session.
Mbox 2 Factory Bundle Plug-ins
• Open any other session on your system.
If you purchased a Factory version of Mbox 2, go
to the Additional Files/Factory Bundle Installers
folder on the Pro Tools LE Installer disc and run
the Install Mbox 2 Factory Bundle installer.
Mbox 2 CoreAudio Driver
The Mbox 2 CoreAudio Driver is a multi-client,
multichannel sound driver that allows CoreAudio compatible applications to record and play
back through Digidesign hardware.
Quick Start dialog
For more information on the Quick
Start dialog and session templates, see the
Pro Tools Reference Guide (Help > Pro
Tools Reference Guide).
The Mbox 2 CoreAudio Driver is installed by default when you install Pro Tools.
For information on configuring the
Mbox 2 CoreAudio Driver, see the CoreAudio Drivers Guide.
Chapter 2: Installing Pro Tools on Mac
7
Standalone Mbox 2 CoreAudio Driver
The Mbox 2 CoreAudio Driver can be installed
as a standalone driver on Mac systems that do
not have Pro Tools software installed. The standalone version of this driver is available on the
Pro Tools Installer disc (in the Additional Files
Folder).
For information on installing and configuring the standalone version of the Mbox 2
CoreAudio Driver, see the CoreAudio Drivers Guide.
Pro Tools Demo Session
The demo session can be opened by doubleclicking the Filtered Dream.ptf file (located
in the Filtered Dream Demo Session folder).
Uninstalling Pro Tools
If you need to uninstall Pro Tools software from
your computer, use the Uninstaller application.
To remove Pro Tools from your computer:
1 Make sure you are logged in as an Administrator for the account where Pro Tools is installed.
For details on Administrator privileges in
Mac OS X, see your Apple OS X documentation.
The Pro Tools LE Installer disc includes a demo
session that you can use to verify that your system is working.
The demo session for Pro Tool LE is named “Filtered Dream.”
Before installing the demo session to your
audio drive, make sure the drive is configured as described in “Formatting an Audio
Drive” on page 52.
To install the demo session:
1 Insert the Pro Tools LE Installer disc into your
DVD drive.
2 On the Pro Tools LE Installer disc, locate and
open the Additional Files/Demo Sessions Installer folder.
3 Double-click Install LE Demo Session.pkg.
4 Follow the on-screen instructions.
5 When prompted, select your audio drive as
the install location and click Next to begin the
installation. When installation is complete,
click Close.
2 Go to Applications/Digidesign/Pro Tools/
Pro Tools Utilities and double-click
Uninstall Pro Tools.
3 Click Continue to proceed with the uninstall.
4 Choose the type of uninstall you want to perform:
Safe Uninstall Leaves certain plug-ins and system files needed for compatibility with some
Avid products. Use Safe Uninstall if you are using an Avid application or preparing to update
to a CS (customer support) release.
Clean Uninstall Removes all Pro Tools files, including system files, Digidesign plug-ins, and
MIDI patch names. Use Clean Uninstall whenever you are preparing to upgrade, or to troubleshoot from a clean system.
5 Click Uninstall.
6 Enter your Administrator password and click
OK.
7 Click Finish to close the Installer window.
8
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
chapter 3
Installing Pro Tools on Windows
This chapter contains information for Windows
systems only. If you are installing Pro Tools on a
Mac computer, see Chapter 2, “Installing
Pro Tools on Mac.”
Before installing this version of Pro Tools,
refer to the Read Me information included
on the Pro Tools LE Installer disc.
Installation Overview
Installing the Mbox 2 on a Windows computer
includes the following steps:
1 “Installing Pro Tools LE and Connecting Your
Interface” on page 9.
2 “Launching Pro Tools LE” on page 12
Installing Pro Tools LE and
Connecting Your Interface
Before connecting your Pro Tools LE interface to
the computer, you need to install Pro Tools LE
software.
Do not start this procedure with your
Mbox 2 connected to your computer.
To install Pro Tools LE:
1 Start Windows, logging in with Administrator
privileges. For details on Administrator privileges, refer to your Windows documentation.
2 Insert the Pro Tools LE Installer disc in your
DVD drive and do one of the following:
mance (see Chapter 4, “Configuring Your
Pro Tools System”).
• If Windows AutoRun is enabled, the installer splash screen will appear. Click the
on-screen link to install Pro Tools LE. Then
follow the on-screen instructions.
4 Making audio and MIDI connections to the
– or –
Mbox 2 (see Chapter 6, “Making Hardware Connections” for details).
• If Windows AutoRun is disabled and the
splash screen does not appear, double-click
Setup.exe on the installer disc. Then click
the on-screen link.
3 Configuring your system for improved perfor-
The Pro Tools Installer disc includes additional software for your system. For more information, see “Additional Software on the
Pro Tools Installer Disc” on page 12.
Setup.exe icon
Chapter 3: Installing Pro Tools on Windows
9
In Vista, if the User Account Control dialog
appears, click Allow.
3 Follow the on-screen instructions to proceed
with installation and click Next when prompted.
4 To install the complete compliment of
Pro Tools software and plug-ins, leave Pro Tools
selected.
5 At the Select Features page, do one of the fol-
lowing:
• To install all Pro Tools application files and
free plug-in suites (and associated content),
leave the default Installation options selected and click Continue.
– or –
• Select (or deselect) a custom configuration
of Installation options (see “Installation
Options” on page 11) and click Continue.
6 Click Next.
7 Click Install.
8 When prompted, connect the small end of the
included USB cable to the USB port on
Mbox 2.Connect the other end of the USB cable
to any available USB port on your computer.
Mbox 2 may not function properly if connected to a USB hub. If you need to use a hub
for other USB peripherals, connect the hub to
a separate USB port; Mbox 2 must be connected to a dedicated port on the computer in
order to function properly
9 Click OK.
In Windows Vista, a series of Windows Security dialogs may appear. Click “Install” on
each one until they go away.
10
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
In Windows XP, a series of Software Installation dialogs about the driver not passing
Windows Logo testing may appear. Click
Continue Anyway on each one until they go
away.
If any other dialogs appear (such as the
“Found New Hardware” dialog), leave
them open and do not click on them. These
dialogs will close on their own.
10 Wait for the installer to finish installing all
software components, drivers, and PACE System
files before proceeding to the next step.
11 When installation is complete, click Finish
and restart your computer.
If the USB LED on the front panel of the
Mbox 2 does not illuminate after restarting
the computer, try unplugging the USB cable
from the Mbox 2 USB port, and plugging it
back in. If the USB LED still does not illuminate, shut down the computer, disconnect Mbox 2 and start the computer. Once
the computer has fully restarted, reconnect
Mbox 2.
Installation Options
Installing QuickTime
Pro Tools LE Options
QuickTime is required for Pro Tools if you plan
to include movie files, or import MP3 or MP4
(AAC) files in your sessions. QuickTime for Windows is available as a free download from the
Apple website (www.apple.com).
To install a subset of Pro Tools software and
plug-ins (and associated content), click the plus
(+) next to Pro Tools LE 8.0 option in the Select
Features page of the installer, and deselect any
of the following options that you do not want
installed.
Application Files (Required for Pro Tools) Installs the Pro Tools application and supporting
library files needed to run Pro Tools. This option
must be selected to install Pro Tools.
For information on which version of QuickTime is compatible with your version of
Pro Tools, visit the compatibility pages of
our website:
www.digidesign.com/compatibility
To install QuickTime:
DigiRack Plug-Ins Installs free plug-ins including
DigiRack plug-ins, free Bomb Factory plug-ins,
Eleven Free, TL Utilities, and Digidesign D-Fi
and Maxim plug-ins.
1 Visit www.apple.com and go to the Quick-
Pro Tools Creative Collection Installs a set of free
RTAS effects plug-ins and virtual instrument
plug-ins (including 4.4 GB of associated sample
content). For more information, see the Creative
Collection Plug-ins Guide.
3 Double-click the QuickTime installer applica-
Time page.
2 Download the QuickTime installer applica-
tion to your computer.
tion and follow the on-screen installation instructions.
4 Restart your computer.
Additional Options
The Pro Tools installer provides the following
additional options to install along with
Pro Tools software and plug-ins.
Mac HFS+ Disk Support Option This option lets
your Pro Tools system read, write, record, and
play back using Mac-formatted HFS+ disks. HFS+
disks are commonly referred to as Mac OS Extended disks.
Avid Video Engine The Avid Video Engine is required to use Pro Tools with Avid video peripherals such as the Avid Mojo.
Command|8 Controller and Driver The Command|8® driver is required if you are using the
Digidesign Command|8 control surface.
Chapter 3: Installing Pro Tools on Windows
11
Launching Pro Tools LE
When launching Pro Tools LE the first time, you
are prompted to enter an authorization code.
To authorize Pro Tools LE software:
1 Make sure Mbox 2 is connected to your com-
puter.
2 Double-click the Pro Tools LE shortcut on
your desktop (or the application icon in the
Pro Tools folder inside the Digidesign folder).
3 Enter the authorization code in the dialog
(making sure to type it exactly as printed, and
observing any spaces and capitalization), then
click Validate. (Your authorization code is located on the inside front cover of this guide.)
4 Use the Quick Start dialog to do one of
the following:
• Create a new session from template.
• Create a new blank session.
• Open any other session on your system.
Additional Software on the
Pro Tools Installer Disc
The Pro Tools LE Installer disc provides additional software for your system, including audio
drivers (for playing other audio applications
through your Digidesign hardware) and a
Pro Tools demo session.
Refer to your Pro Tools Installer disc for additional software and installers.
Third-Party Applications and
Plug-ins
Your Pro Tools package also includes several free
applications and plug-ins from selected third
party developers. Once you've completed your
Pro Tools installation, you can install these separately. Go to the Additional Files\3rd Party
Content folder on the Pro Tools LE Installer
disc.
Mbox 2 Factory Bundle Plug-ins
If you purchased a Factory version of Mbox 2, go
to the \Additional Files\Factory Bundle Installers folder on the Pro Tools LE Installer disc and
run the Mbox 2 Factory Bundle Setup.exe.
Windows Audio Drivers
Quick Start dialog
For more information on the Quick
Start dialog and session templates, see the
Pro Tools Reference Guide (Help >
Pro Tools Reference Guide).
12
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
The Digidesign ASIO Driver and WaveDriver
Windows System Audio Driver let you use your
Digidesign Mbox 2 hardware interface with
third-party applications that support the ASIO
Driver or WaveDriver MME (Multimedia Extension).
The Digidesign ASIO Driver and WaveDriver for
Mbox 2 are automatically installed when you
install Pro Tools.
Digidesign ASIO Driver
Pro Tools Demo Session
The Digidesign ASIO (Audio Sound Input Output) Driver is a single-client multichannel
sound driver that allows third-party audio programs that support the ASIO standard to record
and play back through Digidesign hardware.
The Pro Tools LE Installer disc includes a demo
session that you can use to verify that your system is working.
For detailed information on configuring the
Digidesign ASIO Driver, see the Windows
Audio Drivers Guide.
Digidesign WaveDriver
(Windows XP Only)
The Digidesign WaveDriver Windows System
Audio Driver is a single-client, stereo sound
driver that allows third-party audio programs
that support the WaveDriver MME (Multimedia
Extension) standard to play back through Digidesign hardware.
For detailed information on configuring the
Digidesign WaveDriver, see the Windows
Audio Drivers Guide.
Standalone Windows Audio Drivers
Digidesign Windows Audio Drivers can be installed on Windows systems that do not have
Pro Tools software installed. Use the standalone
version of the Digidesign Windows Audio Drivers installer (Digidesign Audio Drivers
Setup.exe), which is available on the
Pro Tools LE Installer disc.
The demo session for Pro Tool LE is named “Filtered Dream.”
Before installing the demo session to your
audio drive, make sure the drive is configured as described in “Formatting an Audio
Drive” on page 52.
To install the demo session:
1 Insert the Pro Tools LE Installer disc into your
DVD drive.
2 On the Pro Tools LE Installer disc, locate and
open the Additional Files\Demo Sessions Installer folder.
3 Double-click LE Demo Session Setup.exe.
4 Follow the onscreen instructions.
5 When prompted, select your audio drive as
the install location and click Next to begin the
install.
6 When installation is complete, click Finish.
The demo session can be opened by doubleclicking the Filtered Dream.ptf file (located
in the Filtered Dream Demo Session folder).
For information on installing and configuring the standalone version of the Digidesign
Windows Audio Drivers, see the Windows
Audio Drivers Guide.
Chapter 3: Installing Pro Tools on Windows
13
Uninstalling Pro Tools
Use the Uninstall Pro Tools application to uninstall Pro Tools software from your computer.
To uninstall Pro Tools from your computer:
1 Start Windows, logging in with Administrator
privileges. For details on Administrator privileges, refer to your Windows documentation.
2 Go to C:\Program Files\Digidesign\
Pro Tools\Pro Tools Utilities and double-click
Uninstall Pro Tools.exe.
3 Click Next.
4 Click Uninstall to proceed with the uninstallation.
14
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
chapter 4
Configuring Your Pro Tools System
After you have connected your system and installed Pro Tools software, you are ready to start
up and configure your Pro Tools system.
Starting Up or Shutting Down
Your System
To ensure that the components of your
Pro Tools system communicate properly with
each other, you need to start them in a particular order.
Shut down your Pro Tools system in this order:
1 Quit Pro Tools and any other running applica-
tions.
To quit Pro Tools, choose Pro Tools >
Quit (Mac) or File > Exit (Windows).
2 Turn off or lower the volume of all output devices in your system.
3 Turn off your computer.
4 Turn off any MIDI interfaces, MIDI devices, or
synchronization peripherals.
Start up your Pro Tools system in this order:
5 Turn off any control surfaces.
1 Lower the volume of all output devices in your
6 Turn off any external hard drives.
system.
2 Turn on any external hard drives. Wait ap-
proximately ten seconds for them to spin up to
speed.
3 Turn on any control surfaces (such as Command|8).
4 Turn on any MIDI interfaces, MIDI devices, or
synchronization peripherals.
5 Turn on your computer.
6 Launch Pro Tools or any third-party audio or
MIDI applications.
Chapter 4: Configuring Your Pro Tools System
15
Configuring Pro Tools LE
Pro Tools System Settings
In the Playback Engine dialog, Pro Tools LE lets
you adjust the performance of your system by
changing system settings that affect its capacity
for processing, playback, and recording.
In most cases, the default settings for your system provide optimum performance, but you
may want to adjust them to accommodate large
or processing-intensive Pro Tools sessions.
Hardware Buffer Size
The Hardware Buffer Size (H/W Buffer Size) controls the size of the buffer used to handle host
processing tasks such as Real-Time AudioSuite™
(RTAS®) plug-ins.
• Lower Hardware Buffer Size settings are useful
for improving latency issues in certain recording situations or for improving certain system
performance problems. On Pro Tools LE systems, lower settings reduce all input-to-output monitoring latency on any record-armed
tracks or Auxiliary Input tracks with live inputs.
• Higher Hardware Buffer Size settings are useful for sessions that are using more RTAS plugins for playback. These settings allow for more
audio processing. They can also be useful to
reduce errors on machines that require a
higher buffer size.
In addition to causing slower screen response and monitoring latency, higher
Hardware Buffer Size settings can increase
the latency caused by RTAS plug-ins, and
affect the accuracy of plug-in automation,
mute data, and MIDI track timing.
Playback Engine dialog (Structure plug-in installed)
To change the Hardware Buffer Size:
1 Choose Setup > Playback Engine.
2 From the H/W Buffer Size pop-up menu, select
the audio buffer size, in samples.
3 Click OK.
16
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
RTAS Processors
To set the number of RTAS Processors:
The RTAS Processors setting determines the
number of processors in your computer allocated for RTAS (Real-Time AudioSuite) plug-in
processing.
1 Choose Setup > Playback Engine.
With computers that have multiple processors,
or that feature multi-core processing or hyperthreading, this setting lets you enable multiprocessor support for RTAS plug-ins. Used in combination with the CPU Usage Limit setting, the
RTAS Processors setting lets you control the way
RTAS processing and other Pro Tools tasks are
handled by the system.
For example:
• For sessions with large numbers of RTAS plugins, you can allocate 2 or more processors to
RTAS processing and set a high CPU Usage
Limit.
• For sessions with few RTAS plug-ins, you can
allocate fewer processors to RTAS processing
and set a low CPU Usage Limit to leave more
CPU resources available for automation accuracy, screen response, and video.
• Depending on the importance of video and
overall screen response, and on the density of
automation being employed, try different
combinations of RTAS Processors and CPU Usage Limit settings to achieve the best results.
For example, to improve screen response in a
medium-sized session using a moderate number of RTAS plug-ins, try reducing the number
of RTAS plug-ins, but keep the CPU Usage Limit
set to the maximum (up to 99% on a single
processor system).
2 From the RTAS Processing pop-up menu, select
the number of available processors you want to
allocate. The number of processors available varies depending on how many processors are
available on your computer:
• Select 1 Processor to limit RTAS processing
to one CPU in the system.
• Choose 2 Processors to enable load balancing across two available processors.
• On systems running four or more processors, choose the number of processors for
RTAS processing.
3 Click OK.
System Usage Window and RTAS Processing
The System Usage window (Windows > System
Usage) displays the combined amount of RTAS
processing occurring on all enabled processors
with a single indicator, regardless of how many
processors are available in the system. If the System Usage Window shows that you are at the
limit of available resources, increase the number
of RTAS processors and adjust the CPU Usage
Limit setting.
Chapter 4: Configuring Your Pro Tools System
17
CPU Usage Limit
RTAS Engine (RTAS Error Suppression)
The CPU Usage Limit setting controls the percentage of CPU resources allocated to Pro Tools
host processing tasks. Used in combination with
the RTAS Processors setting, the CPU Usage Limit
setting lets you control the way Pro Tools tasks
are carried out by the system.
The RTAS Engine option determines RTAS error
reporting during playback and recording. This is
especially useful when working with instrument
plug-ins.
• Lower CPU Usage Limit settings limit the effect
of Pro Tools processing on other CPU-intensive tasks, such as screen redraws, and are useful when you are experiencing slow system
response, or when running other applications
at the same time as Pro Tools.
• Higher CPU Usage Limit settings allocate more
processing power to Pro Tools, and are useful
for playing back large sessions or using more
RTAS plug-ins.
The maximum available CPU Usage Limit depends on the number of processors in your computer and on the number of processors you
specify for RTAS processing. This value can
range from 85% for single-processor computers,
and 99% for multiprocessor computers (which
dedicate one entire processor to Pro Tools).
On multiprocessor computers, the maximum
CPU Usage Limit is reduced when you use all your
processors (as selected in the RTAS Processing
pop-up menu). For example, on dual-processors,
the limit is 90%. On four-processor computers,
the limit is 95%.
Increasing the CPU Usage Limit may slow
down screen responses on slower computers.
To change the CPU Usage Limit:
1 Choose Setup > Playback Engine.
2 From the CPU Usage Limit pop-up menu, select
the percentage of CPU processing you want to
allocate to Pro Tools.
3 Click OK.
18
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
You should only enable RTAS error suppression
if you are experiencing frequent RTAS errors
that are interrupting your creative workflow.
When RTAS error suppression is enabled, you
can experience a degradation of audio quality.
However, this may be acceptable in order to
avoid interrupting playback and recording
when working with instrument plug-ins. Be sure
to disable RTAS error suppression when you
need to ensure the highest possible audio quality, such as for a final mix.
To enable RTAS error suppression:
1 Choose Setup > Playback Engine.
2 Select Ignore Errors During Playback/Record.
3 On Mac, you can also select Minimize Additional
I/O Latency.
4 Click OK.
RTAS Error Suppression Options
Ignore Errors During Playback/Record When enabled, Pro Tools continues to play and record
even if the RTAS processing requirements exceed the selected CPU Usage Limit. This can result
in pops and clicks in the audio, but does not
stop the transport.
Minimize Additional I/O Latency (Mac
Only) When enabled, any additional latency due
to suppressing RTAS errors during playback and
record is minimized to 128 samples. Suppressing
RTAS errors requires at least 128 samples of additional buffering on some systems. If this option is disabled, the buffer is half the H/W Buffer
Size, or at least 128 samples (whichever is
greater). If you are on an older, slower computer, you may want to disable this option to
avoid adverse performance.
This option is only available on Mac if the Ignore
Errors During Playback/Record option is enabled.
DAE Playback Buffer Size
The DAE Playback Buffer Size setting determines
the amount of memory DAE allocates for disk
buffers. In addition to levels, the DAE Playback
Buffer Size shows values in milliseconds, which
indicate the amount of audio buffered when the
system reads from disk.
The optimum DAE Playback Buffer Size for most
disk operations is 1500 msec; Level 2 (Default).
• DAE Playback Buffer Size settings lower than
1500 msec; Level 2 (Default) may improve
playback and recording initiation speed, as
well as preview in context in DigiBase browsers. However, a lower setting may make it difficult to play or record tracks reliably with
sessions containing a large number of tracks
or a high density of edits, or with systems that
have slower or heavily-fragmented hard
drives.
• DAE Playback Buffer Size settings higher than
1500 msec; Level 2 (Default) allow higher track
count, higher density of edits in a session, or
the use of slower hard drives. However, a
higher setting may increase the time lag when
starting playback or recording, starting preview in context from DigiBase browsers, or
cause a longer audible time lag while editing
during playback.
Using a larger DAE Playback Buffer Size
leaves less system memory for other tasks.
The default setting of 1500 msec (Level 2) is
recommended unless you are encountering
–9073 (“Disk too slow or fragmented”)
errors.
To change the DAE Playback Buffer Size:
1 Choose Setup > Playback Engine.
2 From the DAE Playback Buffer pop-up menu,
select a buffer size. Memory requirements for
each setting are shown at the bottom of the
Playback Engine dialog.
3 Click OK.
If Pro Tools needs more system memory for the
DAE Playback Buffer, it will prompt you to restart your computer.
Chapter 4: Configuring Your Pro Tools System
19
Cache Size
Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size
The Cache Size setting determines the amount
of memory DAE allocates to pre-buffer audio for
playback and looping when using Elastic Audio.
(Structure Plug-in Only)
Minimum Reduces the amount of system memory used for disk operations and frees up memory for other system tasks. However, performance when using Elastic Audio features may
decrease.
Normal Is the optimum Cache Size for most sessions.
Large Improves performance when using Elastic
Audio features, but it also decreases the amount
of memory available for other system tasks, such
as RTAS processing.
Using a larger Cache Size leaves less system
memory for other tasks. The default setting
of Normal is recommended unless you are
encountering -9500 (“Cache too small”)
errors.
To change the Cache Size:
1 Choose Setup > Playback Engine.
2 From the Cache Size pop-up menu, select a
disk cache size.
3 Click OK.
This setting appears in the Playback Engine dialog only if Structure, Structure LE, or
Structure Free is installed on your system. The
Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size determines the
amount of memory DAE allocates for streaming
playback from disk with the Structure plug-in.
This setting only affects playback if disk streaming is activated in Structure’s plug-in controls
(see the Structure Plug-in Guide for more information).
The optimum Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size for
most sessions is 250 ms (Level 2).
• Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size settings lower
than 250 msec (Level 2) reduce the amount of
system memory used for sample playback and
frees up memory for other system tasks. However, audio quality of sample playback may
decrease.
• Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size settings higher
than 250 msec (Level 2) improve the audio
quality of sample playback, but they also decrease the amount of memory available for
other system tasks, such as RTAS processing.
Using a larger Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size
leaves less system memory for other tasks.
The default setting of 250 ms (Level 2) is
recommended unless you are experiencing
problems with the audio quality of sample
playback.
To change the Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size:
1 Choose Setup > Playback Engine.
2 From the Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size pop-up
menu, select a buffer size.
3 Click OK.
20
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Optimizing the Plug-in Streaming Buffer
Size
(Structure Plug-in Only)
This option appears in the Playback Engine dialog only if one of the Structure sampler instrument plug-in is installed on your system. This
option is useful when you are playing samples
from the same drive that contains audio for the
current session. When this option is selected,
Pro Tools automatically optimizes the size of the
Plug-in Streaming Buffer to facilitate disk access
from both Pro Tools and Structure. The Plug-in
Streaming Buffer Size pop-up menu is unavailable when this option is selected.
To set Pro Tools to optimize the Plug-in Streaming
Buffer Size:
1 Choose Setup > Playback Engine.
2 Select the Optimize for Streaming Content op-
tion.
Pro Tools Hardware Settings
In the Hardware Setup dialog, Pro Tools lets you
set the default sample rate and clock source for
your system, as well as a range of controls specific to each type of audio interface.
Default Sample Rate
The Sample Rate setting appears as the default
sample rate when you create a new session. (This
setting is available in the Hardware Setup dialog
only when no session is open.)
You can change the sample rate when creating a new Pro Tools session by selecting a
different sample rate in the New Session
dialog. (Refer to the Pro Tools Reference
Guide for details.)
To change the default Sample Rate:
1 Choose Setup > Hardware.
3 Click OK.
Hardware Setup dialog for Mbox 2
2 Select the sample rate from the Sample Rate
pop-up menu.
3 Click OK.
Chapter 4: Configuring Your Pro Tools System
21
Clock Source
To rename I/O paths in I/O Setup:
The Pro Tools Hardware Setup dialog lets you select the Clock Source for the system.
1 Choose Setup > I/O.
Internal Use this setting if you are recording analog signals directly into Mbox 2 analog inputs
1–2 and/or are recording digital inputs into
Mbox 2 inputs 3–4 where the digital device is
synchronized to the Mbox 2 digital output.
S/PDIF Use this setting if you are recording
through the Mbox 2 S/PDIF inputs from an external digital device. This setting will synchronize Pro Tools to that digital device.
To select the Clock Source:
1 Choose Setup > Hardware.
2 Choose the clock source from the Clock Source
pop-up menu.
3 Click OK.
Your digital input device must be connected
and powered on for Pro Tools to synchronize to it. If your input device is not powered
on, leave the Clock Source set to Internal.
Configuring I/O Setup
Using the I/O Setup dialog, you can label
Pro Tools LE input, output, insert, and bus signal
paths. The I/O Setup dialog provides a graphical
representation of the inputs, outputs, and signal
routing of the Mbox 2.
Pro Tools LE has default I/O Setup settings that
will get you started. Use the I/O Setup dialog
only if you want to rename the default I/O
paths.
22
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
I/O Setup dialog for Mbox 2
2 Click the Input, Output, Insert, or Bus tab to display the corresponding connections.
3 To change the name of a path or subpath, double-click directly on the Path Name, type a new
name for the path, and press Enter.
4 Click OK.
See the Pro Tools Reference Guide (Help >
Pro Tools Reference Guide) for more information on renaming I/O paths.
Configuring MIDI Setup
If you plan to use any MIDI devices with Pro Tools,
do one of the following:
 On Mac, configure your MIDI setup with Audio MIDI Setup. See Appendix A, “Configuring
AMS (Mac OS X Only)” for details.
– or –
 On Windows, configure your MIDI setup with
MIDI Studio Setup. See Appendix B, “Configuring MIDI Studio Setup (Windows Only)” for details.
Backing Up your System
Configuration
Turning Off Software Update
To turn off the Software Update feature:
After configuring your system and Pro Tools,
you should save an image of your system drive
using a backup utility such as Norton Ghost. By
doing this, you can quickly restore your system
configuration and settings if you encounter any
problems.
1 Choose System Preferences from the Apple
menu and click Software Update.
2 Click the Scheduled Check tab and ensure
Check for updates is deselected.
Turning Off Energy Saver
Optimizing a Mac System for
Pro Tools
To ensure optimum performance with
Pro Tools, configure your computer before using
Pro Tools hardware and software.
For Windows System Optimization, see
“Optimizing a Windows System for
Pro Tools” on page 25.
Before configuring your computer, make sure
you are logged in as an Administrator for the account where you want to install Pro Tools. For
details on Administrator privileges in Mac OS X,
refer to your Apple OS X documentation.
Do not use the Mac OS X automatic Software Update feature, as it may upgrade
your system to a version of Mac OS that has
not yet been qualified for Pro Tools.
To turn off the Energy Saver feature:
1 Choose System Preferences from the Apple
menu and click Energy Saver.
2 Click the Sleep tab and do the following:
• Set the computer sleep setting to Never.
• Set the display sleep setting to Never.
• Deselect Put the hard disk(s) to sleep when
possible option.
Setting Processor Performance
(Mac G5 Computers and G4 Powerbooks Only)
To set the Processor Performance:
1 Choose System Preferences from the Apple
menu and click Energy Saver.
2 Click the Options tab and set Processor Performance to Highest.
For details on qualified versions of Mac OS,
refer to the latest compatibility information
on our website
(www.digidesign.com/compatibility).
Chapter 4: Configuring Your Pro Tools System
23
Disable or Reassign Mac Keyboard
Shortcuts Used by Pro Tools
To have the full complement of Pro Tools keyboard shortcuts, you need to disable or reassign
any conflicting Mac OS X Keyboard Shortcuts in
the Apple System Preferences, including the following:
• “Show Help menu”
Reassign Spaces Keyboard Shortcuts
If you want to use Spaces, you should reassign
the Spaces keyboard shortcuts to avoid conflicts
with important Pro Tools keyboard shortcuts.
You can reassign Spaces keyboard shortcuts to
use a combination of modifier keys (Command+Option+Control+Shift) in addition to
the default Spaces keyboard shortcut assignments to avoid these conflicts.
• Under “Keyboard Navigation”
• “Move focus to the window drawer”
• Under “Dock, Exposé, and Dashboard”
• “Automatically hide and show the Dock”
• “All windows”
• “Application windows”
1 Choose System Preferences from the Apple
menu and click Exposé & Spaces.
• “Desktop”
2 Click the Spaces tab.
• “Dashboard”
3 Ensure that Enable Spaces is selected.
• “Spaces”
• Under “Spotlight”
• “Show Spotlight search field”
• “Show Spotlight window”
For a complete list of Pro Tools keyboard
shortcuts, see the Keyboard Shortcuts Guide
(Help > Keyboard Shortcuts).
To disable or reassign Mac OS X keyboard
shortcuts:
1 Choose System Preferences from the Apple
menu and click Keyboard & Mouse.
2 Click the Keyboard Shortcuts tab.
3 Do one of the following:
• Deselect the Mac OS X options that conflict
with Pro Tools keyboard shortcuts.
– or –
• Assign different, non-conflicting keyboard
shortcuts to the corresponding Mac OS X
options.
24
To reassign Spaces keyboard shortcuts to use
modifier key combinations that do not conflict
with Pro Tools keyboard shortcuts:
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
4 Press and hold Command+Option+Con-
trol+Shift and select “Control+Option+Shift+Command+F8” from the “To activate Spaces” pop-up
menu.
5 Press and hold Command+Option+Con-
trol+Shift and select “Control+Option+Shift+Command+Arrow Keys” from the “To switch between
spaces” pop-up menu.
6 Press and hold Command+Option+Con-
trol+Shift and select “Control+Option+Shift+Command+Number Keys” from the “To switch directly
to a space” pop-up menu.
Disabling Spotlight Indexing
The Mac OS X Spotlight feature automatically
indexes files and folders on local hard drives in
the background. In most cases, this is not a concern for normal Pro Tools operation. However,
if Spotlight starts indexing drives while recording in a Pro Tools session with high track counts
for an extended period of time, it can adversely
affect Pro Tools system performance. You may
want to disable Spotlight indexing for all local
drives before using Pro Tools for big recording
projects.
Disabling Spotlight indexing also disables
the Find function in Mac OS X.
Optimizing a Windows System
for Pro Tools
To ensure optimum performance with
Pro Tools LE, configure your computer before
using Pro Tools hardware and software.
For Mac System Optimization, see “Optimizing a Mac System for Pro Tools” on
page 23.
Before configuring your computer, make sure
you are logged in as an Administrator for the account where you want to install Pro Tools. For
details on Administrator privileges, see your
Windows documentation.
To disable Spotlight indexing:
1 Choose System Preferences from the Apple
menu and click Spotlight.
2 In the Spotlight window, click the Privacy tab.
3 To prevent indexing of a drive, drag its icon
from the desktop into the list.
Required Optimizations
To ensure optimum performance with
Pro Tools, configure the following settings before using Pro Tools hardware and software.
When you are finished changing Windows
system settings, restart your computer.
Enabling Journaling for Audio Drives
To yield higher performance from audio drives,
enable journaling.
To enable journaling:
1 Launch the Disk Utility application, located in
Macintosh HD/Applications/Utilities.
2 Select the volume in the left column of the
Enabling DMA
Enabling your computer's DMA (Direct Memory
Access) frees up CPU bandwidth so your computer can do other Pro Tools tasks.
In most cases the DMA option will already be set
correctly, as Windows detects and activates
DMA mode by default.
Disk Utility window.
3 Click Enable Journaling in the toolbar.
Chapter 4: Configuring Your Pro Tools System
25
To enable DMA for any IDE hard drives:
1 Right-click Computer (Windows Vista) or My
To configure Windows Power Management
(Windows Vista):
Computer (Windows XP).
1 Choose Start > Control Panel.
2 In the left-hand pane of the Computer Man-
2 Double-click Power Options.
agement window under System Tools, click on
Device Manager.
3 In the Power Options window, select High Per-
3 In the right-hand pane, click the plus (+) sign
to expand IDE ATA/API Controllers.
4 Right-click on the Primary IDE Controller and se-
lect Properties.
5 Click the Advanced Settings tab.
6 For each device, do one of the following de-
pending on your operating system:
• Check the box Enable DMA (Windows Vista)
– or –
• Set the Transfer Mode to DMA if available
(Windows XP)
formance.
4 Click Change plan settings.
5 In the Edit Plan Settings window, click Change
advanced power settings.
6 In the Power Options dialog, reveal Hard disk
> Turn off hard disk after.
7 Click the Setting option.
8 Select the value in the Setting (Minutes) field
and press Backspace on your computer keyboard.
9 Press Enter. The hard disk setting changes to
Never and the Power Options dialog closes.
7 Click OK.
10 In the Edit Plan Settings window, click Save
8 Repeat the above steps for any additional IDE
changes and close the window.
Channels.
9 Close the Computer Management window.
To configure Windows Power Management
(Windows XP):
Disabling System Standby and Power
Management
1 Choose Start > Control Panel.
When using Pro Tools, the Windows System
Standby power scheme must be set to Always On.
This helps prevent long record or playback
passes from stopping due to system resources
powering down.
3 Click the Power Schemes tab.
2 Double-click Power Options.
4 From the Power Schemes pop-up menu, select
Always.
5 Verify that the following settings are set to
Never:
• Turn off hard disks
• System standby
• System hibernates
6 Click OK.
26
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Disabling User Account Control
Optional Optimizations
(Windows Vista Only)
The following system optimizations may help
Pro Tools perform better on some systems. It is
recommended that you only try these optimizations if necessary, as they may disable or adversely affect the functionality of other programs on your system.
For optimal performance with Pro Tools on
Windows Vista, disable User Account Control
(UAC).
To disable User Account Control (UAC):
1 Choose Start > Control Panel.
2 Double-click User Accounts.
3 Click Turn User Account Control on or off.
4 Deselect the Use User Account Control (UAC) to
help protect your computer option.
5 Click OK.
Disabling Network Cards
If applicable, disable any networking cards
(other than a FireWire card that you might use
to connect an external drive to your system).
To disable a network card:
1 Right-click Computer (Windows Vista) or My
Computer (Windows XP) and choose Manage.
Recommended Optimizations
Pro Tools can also be affected by other software
and hardware drivers installed on your computer. For best possible performance, it is recommended (but not required) that you do the following:
• Avoid running any unneeded programs at
the same time as Pro Tools.
• Turn off any software utilities that run in
the background, such as Windows Messenger, calendars, and disk maintenance programs.
2 Under System Tools, select Device Manager.
3 In the Device Manager window, double-click
Network adapters, then double-click the Network
Adapter card you want to disable.
4 Under the General tab, choose “Do not use this
device (disable)” from the Device Usage pop-up
menu, and click OK.
5 Close the Computer Management window.
• Turn off any non-essential USB devices
while running Pro Tools.
• If your video display card supports it, enable Bus Mastering in the manufacturer’s
Control Panel. See the manufacturer’s instructions for details.
Chapter 4: Configuring Your Pro Tools System
27
Adjusting Processor Scheduling
To adjust Processor Scheduling performance:
1 Right-click Computer (Windows Vista) or My
Computer (Windows XP) and choose Properties.
2 in the System Properties window, click the Advanced tab.
3 Under the Performance section, click the Set-
tings button.
4 In the Performance Options window, click the
Advanced tab.
5 Under the Processor Scheduling section, select
the Background Services option.
6 Under the Memory Usage section, select the
System cache option.
7 Click OK to close the Performance Options
window.
8 Click OK to close the System Properties window.
9 Restart the computer for the changes to take
effect.
Disabling System Startup Items
The fewer items in use by your computer, the
more resources are available for Pro Tools. Some
startup applications may be consuming unnecessary CPU resources, and can be turned off.
If you disable any of the following startup items,
do so carefully:
• Portable media serial number (required for
some applications that utilize a copy protection key)
• The Plug and Play service
• Event log
• Cryptographic services
To Disable System Startup Items:
1 From the Start menu, type “msconfig” in Start
Search (Windows Vista) or in Run (Windows XP)
and click OK to open the System Configuration
Utility.
2 Under the General tab, choose Selective Startup.
3 Deselect Load Startup Items and click OK.
4 Click Restart to restart the computer.
5 After restarting, the computer displays a Sys-
tem Configuration message. Check to see if
Pro Tools performance has increased before you
deselect the Don't show this message again option. If performance has not changed, run
“msconfig” and return your computer Startup
Selection back to Normal Startup - load all device
drives and services. Alternatively, try disabling
Startup items and non-essential processes individually.
28
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
chapter 5
Mbox 2 Hardware Overview
Mbox 2 Front Panel Features
Figure 1 identifies controls, indicators, and input and output ports on the front panel on the Mbox 2.
Input 2
Input 1
Headphone Monitor
Level
Level
S/PDIF
LED
USB
LED
Mix
(Ratio)
Gain
Mono 48V
Peak
LED
Source
selector
Pad
Gain
Peak
LED
Source
selector
Pad
Headphone
Output
Mono 48V
LED LED
Mic/DI LEDs
Mic/DI LEDs
Figure 1. Mbox 2 front panel
The Mbox 2 front panel provides the following:
Front Panel Headphone Output
S/PDIF LED
Use the Headphone Output to connect stereo
headphones with a 1/4-inch stereo connector.
This LED indicates that Mbox 2 is using the
S/PDIF inputs as the clock source. See “S/PDIF
Digital I/O” on page 32.
Headphone Level
USB LED
The headphone knob adjusts the output level of
the Headphone port, which outputs the signal
that is routed to Outputs 1–2 in Pro Tools LE,
and mirrors the Monitor Output ports.
The USB LED indicates that the Mbox 2 has received power from its USB connection. Once the
USB light is on, audio can pass in or out of the
system.
Chapter 5: Mbox 2 Hardware Overview
29
Monitor Level
Mono Switch and LED
The Monitor knob adjusts the output level of
the Monitor Output ports. In Pro Tools, this will
be the signal routed to Outputs 1–2.
The Mono switch sums the input channels to a
mono signal (delivering that identical signal to
both speakers). This has no effect on Pro Tools
playback monitoring, recording, or on the main
outputs. Switching your stereo source signal to
mono is useful when you are recording a mono
input while listening to stereo playback (to hear
your playing in both sides), or for checking the
phase relationship of stereo inputs. When engaged, the Mono LED lights.
Mix (Ratio) Control
Mbox 2 gives you the ability to monitor your
analog input signals while recording, without
the delay incurred by A/D/A converters and
host-based processing.
This zero-latency analog monitoring is controlled with the Mix knob, which you can use to
blend and adjust the monitor ratio between
Mbox 2 analog inputs and Pro Tools playback.
The Mix knob has no effect when you are using
S/PDIF digital inputs, since it controls the signal
before it reaches the A/D converters.
Monitoring while Overdubbing
To listen to just the Source input signal, turn the
Mix knob fully left to Input. To listen to
Pro Tools output only, turn the knob fully right
to Playback.
In situations where you are monitoring stereo
microphones, stereo synthesizers, or any source
pairs with a comfortable balance, you will probably not want to use the Mono switch.
The output from the Mix control is routed
directly to the Monitor outputs, and is mirrored
in the Headphone and S/PDIF output ports.
Checking Phase Relationships
This ability to blend and control the relative levels of Pro Tools playback and latency-free live
analog inputs can be particularly effective when
overdubbing.
30
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
By panning signals to the center or using the
Mono switch, as opposed to panning them hard
left and right in the Headphone outputs, you
can create a more focused monitor mix to help
minimize distractions while overdubbing.
The Mono switch can also be used for a quick
check of the phase relationship between
Source 1 and Source 2 inputs.
When the two input signals are out of phase,
pressing the Mono switch will result in a sudden
“hollow” sound that is the result of phase cancellation. This quick test with the Mono switch
can help to avoid phase problems later when
mixing these tracks. Frequent checking of phase
relationships with the Mono switch can also assist you in finding the optimal microphone
placement.
48V Switch and LED
Pad Switches and LEDs
Phantom power is activated by the switch labeled 48V on the front panel of Mbox 2. The
LED, when lit, indicates that 48V phantom
power is active on the Mic/Line inputs. These inputs provide phantom power for microphones
that require it to operate.
The Pad switches engage a –20 dB pad on their
corresponding input channels. When engaged,
the Pad LEDs light.
About Phantom Power
Dynamic microphones (such as a Shure SM57)
do not require phantom power to operate, but
are not harmed by it. Most condenser microphones (like an AKG C3000) do require phantom power to operate.
Although phantom power can be used
safely with most microphones, it is possible
to damage some ribbon microphones with
it. Always turn off phantom power and wait
at least ten seconds before connecting or disconnecting a ribbon microphone.
When using phantom power, Mbox 2’s
maximum current per microphone is 4 mA.
If you are not sure about the phantom power requirements for your microphone, consult your
microphone’s documentation or contact the
manufacturer.
Peak LEDs
These LEDs are clip indicators. If the Peak LEDs
flicker occasionally, the signal reaching Mbox 2
has clipped.
Mic/DI Source Selectors and LEDs
These switches select either the Mic (XLR) and
Line (TRS) inputs or DI inputs for each channel.
The Mic and DI LEDs indicate the current source
input.
Removable Handle
Mbox 2 includes a handle that can be used for
carrying and tilting, as well as a replacement
panel that makes the unit more compact.
 The handle can be used as a stand that tilts the
unit into a more easily viewable angle when the
Mbox 2 is placed on a desktop. The handle can
also be used to carry the unit.
 The handle can also be replaced with the optional Mbox 2 faceplate panel. This panel lets
Mbox 2 sit flat on a desktop, and reduces the
space required when packed for traveling.
To replace the handle with the Mbox 2 panel:
1 Unscrew the handle mounting screw located
along the right edge of the handle (when viewing from the front).
2 Remove the handle.
3 Mount the replacement panel in position
where the handle had been.
4 Secure the panel to the unit in its new position
Gain Controls
These knobs adjust the input gain levels of the
Mic/Line inputs.
using the same screw you removed in step 1.
5 Repeat the above basic instructions to replace
the panel with the handle.
Chapter 5: Mbox 2 Hardware Overview
31
Mbox 2 Back Panel Features
Figure 2 identifies each port on the back panel of the Mbox 2.
Input 2
(analog
input 2)
Mic
Input 1
(analog
input 1)
DI
Line
Mic
DI
Line
Monitor
outputs
S/PDIF
digital I/O
MIDI I/O
USB port
Figure 2. Mbox 2 back panel
The Mbox 2 back panel provides the following:
S/PDIF Digital I/O
USB Port
The S/PDIF in and out ports are unbalanced twoconductor phono (RCA) connectors that utilize
a full 24-bit, two-channel digital data stream.
This standard USB v1.1 connector is used to
connect your computer to the Mbox 2. One
standard USB cable is included with your system.
The Mbox 2 is compatible with USB 2.0 ports.
However, the USB 2.0 bus will switch to the
slower USB v.1.1 speed to accommodate
Mbox 2.
MIDI I/O
The MIDI In and MIDI Out ports are standard 5pin MIDI ports, each providing 16 channels of
MIDI input and output.
32
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
The Sony/Philips Digital Interface Format
(S/PDIF) is used in many professional and consumer CD recorders and DAT recorders. To
avoid RF interference, use 75-ohm coaxial cable
for S/PDIF transfers and keep the cable length to
a maximum of 10 meters.
In use, the S/PDIF input channels are available
in addition to the two channels of analog audio
input. This lets Mbox 2 be used as a 4-in/2-out
digital audio interface for Pro Tools LE.
The S/PDIF output channels always mirror the
main outs 1–2.
Mon Out (Monitor Output)
These outputs support balanced TRS, or unbalanced TS, 1/4-inch connections. To monitor
your mix, these outputs can be connected to a
mixing board, directly to a monitoring system
such as a stereo power amp, or another stereo
destination.
The Mon Out Left and Right play the audio that
is routed to analog outputs 1 and 2 from within
Pro Tools, respectively. These analog outputs
feature 24-bit digital-to-analog converters.
Source 2 is at the far left (when looking at the
back panel), and Source 1 is to its right. The back
panel inputs for Source 1 and Source 2 are located such that they are directly in line with
their associated input controls on the front
panel. This lets you locate input jacks more easily when viewing from the front of the unit.
Though the XLR connectors support instrument and microphone level inputs, whenever a TRS cable is plugged in to the
Line(TRS) port, the XLR port on that channel is ignored.
Input 1 and Input 2
Each analog source input channel (Input 1 and
Input 2) provides Mic, DI (“Direct Inject”), and
Line (TRS) ports. These balanced/unbalanced
analog audio inputs support a broad range of input levels, as follows:
• Mic (microphone) for XLR inputs
• Line (TRS) for line level signals on TRS or TS
inputs
• DI for other 1/4-inch TRS or TS connections
On the front panel, the input signal is adjusted
by the Gain control for each channel and the
source (Mic/Line, or DI) is chosen using the
Source selectors.
Chapter 5: Mbox 2 Hardware Overview
33
34
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
chapter 6
Making Hardware Connections
To hear audio recorded into a Pro Tools session,
you will need to connect headphones or an external sound system (such as powered monitors
or a home stereo) to Mbox 2. Sound from
Mbox 2 cannot be played through your computer’s speakers or your computer’s sound output.
Connecting Headphones
On the front panel of the Mbox 2 is a 1/4-inch
jack to connect headphones, and a headphone
level control to adjust headphone volume.
Headphone level
1/4-inch
Headphone jack
Connecting a Sound System
The monitor outputs on the back of the Mbox 2
support 1/4-inch plugs. These connections can
be balanced, TRS (Tip, Ring, Sleeve) style connectors, or unbalanced connectors. To listen to
your Pro Tools session, these outputs can be
connected to any amplification system: powered speakers, a home stereo system, or a mixer.
When connecting to a stereo system, connect
the left channel (often the white plug) to
Mon Out Left, and right channel (often the red
plug) to Mon Out Right.
Home stereo systems often use RCA connectors. You can use an adaptor or a special cable to convert from the TRS or TS connectors
used by Mbox 2 to the RCA connectors on
your home stereo.
Monitor Out Left
Headphone jack on front of Mbox 2
To connect headphones:
 Connect headphones with a 1/4-inch stereo
connector (or adapter) to the Headphone jack.
Monitor Out Right
Stereo output from the Mbox 2 (back panel)
Mon Outs Left and Right play the audio that is
routed to analog outputs 1 and 2 within
Pro Tools.
Chapter 6: Making Hardware Connections
35
Connecting a Recorder for
Mixdowns
Connecting Audio Inputs
After you record and mix your sessions in
Pro Tools, you may want to mix them down to a
DAT, CD recorder, Mini-Disc, or other stereo 2track recording device.
This section describes the analog inputs available on Mbox 2. For information about connecting specific audio sources, see “Connecting a
Microphone” on page 37, and “Connecting Instruments to the Mbox 2” on page 39.
Connecting an Analog Deck
Overview of Analog Inputs
Connect the left and right Mon Outs on the
back of the Mbox 2 to your recorder’s analog inputs. Mon Outs Left and Right should be routed
to the left and right inputs, respectively, on your
recorder. These outputs are TRS ports. You may
need adapter cables if your mixdown deck has
RCA inputs.
Mbox 2 inputs (sources) support microphones,
guitars, keyboards, and other types of instruments. Mbox 2 has two audio input sections, labeled Input 1 and Input 2. For stereo inputs, use
Input 1 for the left input, and Input 2 for the
right input.
Input 2
Input 1
Connecting a Digital Deck
If you have a CD recorder, DAT deck or other device that accepts S/PDIF connections, connect it
to the S/PDIF In and S/PDIF Out RCA ports on
the back of Mbox 2
When recording from Pro Tools to a digital
device, make sure the Pro Tools Clock
Source setting is set to Internal clock mode.
36
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Inputs on back of Mbox 2
The two input sections are located so that the
hardware input jacks line up directly behind
their corresponding input controls on the front
panel. This makes it easier to locate channel input connections from the front.
Each Input section has three analog input jacks:
XLR connector
Mic For XLR microphone cables.
Line (TRS) For 1/4-inch Tip-Ring-Sleeve cables
from keyboards, mixers, microphones, and
other line sources.
1/4-inch connector
DI For 1/4-inch Tip-Sleeve cables from guitar,
bass, microphones, or similar sources.
XLR and 1/4-inch connectors
Phantom Power
Mic
DI
Mic
DI
Some microphones require power to operate.
This power, called phantom power, is supplied either by a battery in the microphone, or through
an audio interface (such as Mbox 2) that can
supply power through the microphone cable.
Line
(TRS)
Line
(TRS)
Analog input connectors
For information about connecting specific audio sources, see “Connecting a Microphone” on
page 37, and “Connecting Instruments to the
Mbox 2” on page 39.
Most condenser microphones (such as an AKG
C3000) require phantom power to operate. Dynamic microphones (such as a Shure SM57) do
not require phantom power to operate, but are
not harmed by it.
Although phantom power can be used
safely with most microphones, it is possible
to damage some ribbon microphones with
it. Always turn off phantom power and
wait at least ten seconds before connecting
a ribbon microphone.
Connecting a Microphone
There are several ways to use Mbox 2 with a microphone, depending on the type of microphone and cable you use.
Mic Cables and Connectors
The Mbox 2 can only supply power through a
microphone cable with XLR connectors. If you
are not sure about the phantom power requirements for your microphone, refer to your microphone’s documentation or contact the manufacturer.
Some microphone cables use an XLR connector
to attach a microphone to an input (such as
those on the Mbox 2); other microphones use a
1/4-inch connector. If you have a choice, use an
XLR connector to connect the microphone to
the Mbox 2 to yield better results.
Chapter 6: Making Hardware Connections
37
Using a Mic that Has an XLR
Connector
To use a microphone that has an XLR connector:
1 Plug your microphone cable into one of the
Mic inputs on the back of Mbox 2.
Input 2
Mic input
Input 1
Mic input
4 If your microphone requires phantom power,
make sure the microphone is connected, then
press the Phantom Power switch (labeled 48V)
on the front of the Mbox 2. This switch sends
48V to both mic inputs. The 48V LED on the
front of the Mbox 2 will light when phantom
power is being supplied.
Phantom Power
switch
Phantom Power switch
XLR connector plugged into Input 1
5 On the front of the Mbox 2, turn the Mix con2 Make sure nothing is plugged in to the
Line (TRS) jack, otherwise Mbox 2 will use audio
from the Line (TRS) input and not the Mic input.
trol fully left to Input.
Mic control
Gain
3 Set the Source to Mic (microphone) by press-
ing the Mic/DI Source selector on the front of
Mbox 2 until the Mic LED is lit.
Mic/DI
Source selector
Mix control and Gain knob for Input 1
6 On the front of the Mbox 2, carefully turn the
Gain control to the right to increase the input
level of your microphone signal.
7 If the incoming signal is too loud, press the
Pad switch to engage the –20 dB pad.
DI Mic
LED LED
Input 1 Source selector and LEDs
38
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Using a Mic that Has a 1/4-Inch
Connector
To use a microphone that has a 1/4-inch TS
(Tip-Sleeve) connector:
4 On the front of the Mbox 2, carefully turn the
Gain control to the right to increase the input
level of your microphone signal.
5 If the incoming signal is too loud, press the
Pad switch to engage the –20 dB pad.
1 On the back of the Mbox 2, plug the 1/4-inch
connector from your microphone into one of
the DI inputs.
Input 1 DI
Connecting Instruments to
the Mbox 2
Mbox 2 provides two input types (DI and Line)
that correspond to the different signal strengths
output by different types of instruments.
Connecting a microphone to the Input 1 DI connector
2 On the front of the Mbox 2, set the source to
DI by pressing the input channel Source selector
until the DI LED is lit.
Mic/DI
selector
DI Input Instruments such as electric guitar or
electric bass that usually have a lower level of
output than line level instruments use the DI
(“Direct Inject”) input.
Line Input Line level devices, including electronic audio sources such as mixers, samplers,
keyboards, turntables, and synthesizers use the
Line input.
Connecting Electric Guitar or Bass
To use a guitar with Mbox 2:
DI
LED
1 On the back of the Mbox 2, plug your guitar
cable into one of the DI inputs.
Input 1 selector switch and DI LED
3 On the front of the Mbox 2, turn the Mix con-
Input 1 DI
trol fully left to Input.
Mix control
Gain
Pad
Connecting guitar to the Input 1 DI connector
Input 1 Gain and Pad controls, and the Mix control
Chapter 6: Making Hardware Connections
39
2 On the front of the Mbox 2, set the Source to
DI by pressing the Mic/DI switch until the DI
LED is lit.
Mix control
Mic/DI
selector
Input 1 Gain
(level) control
DI
LED
Connecting Keyboards and Mixers
To use a keyboard or mixer with Mbox 2:
1 Plug your keyboard, mixer, or other audio
source into either the Input 1 or Input 2 Line
(TRS) inputs on your Mbox 2. If your source is
stereo (such as a stereo keyboard or the stereo
output from a mixer), connect the left channel
(often the white plug) to Input 1, and right
channel (often the red plug) to Input 2.
Input 2
(right channel)
Input 1
(left channel)
Source selector and Gain control for Input 1
3 On the front of the Mbox 2, turn the Mix con-
trol fully left to Input.
4 On the front of the Mbox 2, carefully turn the
Gain control to the right to increase the input
level of your guitar.
When you record a guitar (or any mono instrument that uses only one source input),
you will hear the sound in only one side of
the stereo field. Pushing the “mono” button
on the front of the Mbox 2 brings the sound
from one side of the stereo field to both
sides. The Mono switch does not affect the
audio being recorded. It only affects how
you hear your input to the Mbox 2.
Mbox 2 connections for line-level stereo input source
If your keyboard has unbalanced outputs,
use the Mbox 2’s DI inputs. Refer to your
keyboard’s documentation
2 On the front of the Mbox 2, set the Source to
Mic by pressing the Mic/DI switch until the Mic
LED is lit.
3 On the front of the Mbox 2, turn the Mix con-
trol fully left to Input.
Mix control
Mic/DI
selector
Input 1 Gain
(level) control
Mic
LED
Source selector and Gain control for Input 1
40
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
4 Set your instrument’s volume to its optimal
Using S/PDIF Input
level. For example, the optimal level for most
keyboards is between 80% and 100% of maximum volume.
To configure Pro Tools to record from a S/PDIF
device:
5 On the front of the Mbox 2, carefully turn the
1 Choose Setups > Hardware Setup.
Gain control to the right to increase the input
level of your keyboard.
2 Select S/PDIF from the Clock Source pop-up
Digital Input and Output
Mbox 2 provides digital inputs and outputs for
S/PDIF format digital audio. The two channels
of S/PDIF digital input can be used in combination with the two analog inputs (for a total of
four simultaneous input channels).
Connecting Digital Devices
To connect a S/PDIF device to Mbox 2:
1 Use two 75-ohm coaxial cables with male RCA
connectors on both ends (purchased separately).
menu. On the front panel, the S/PDIF LED lights
to indicate this setting.
3 Click OK.
4 On the recording track, select the appropriate
stereo or mono S/PDIF source from the track Input selector.
S/PDIF Mirroring
Pro Tools LE uses S/PDIF mirroring to automatically “mirror” the audio that is sent to Line Outputs 1 and 2 on the S/PDIF RCA outputs. This is
useful, for example, if you are monitoring a mix
using your Line Outputs, and also recording the
same source to an external S/PDIF device.
2 Connect the device’s S/PDIF output to
Mbox 2’s S/PDIF input port, and the device’s
S/PDIF input to Mbox 2’s S/PDIF output port.
To configure Mbox 2 to record from a digital
source, choose Setups > Hardware Setup in
Pro Tools, then select S/PDIF in the Clock
Source.
Chapter 6: Making Hardware Connections
41
MIDI Connections
Monitoring MIDI Instruments with
Mbox 2
The two MIDI ports on Mbox 2 let you take advantage of all the MIDI features of Pro Tools LE,
including recording and editing MIDI tracks.
If you have a MIDI instrument that has analog
outputs, you can connect it to Mbox 2 to monitor its output.
If you need additional MIDI ports you can add a
compatible MIDI interface. USB MIDI interfaces
work effectively with Pro Tools systems on Windows or Mac. Serial MIDI interfaces are supported on Windows systems only.
Only USB MIDI interfaces are compatible
with Pro Tools systems for Mac OS X. Modem-to-serial port adapters and serial MIDI
devices are not supported.
To connect your MIDI instrument for monitoring in
Pro Tools:
 Connect the MIDI instrument’s audio outputs
to the Line (TRS) inputs on your Mbox 2.
Input 2
(right channel)
Input 1
(left channel)
To connect your MIDI device to Mbox 2:
1 Connect a standard 5-pin MIDI cable from the
MIDI Out port of your device to the MIDI In
port on the back of Mbox 2.
2 Connect another MIDI cable from the
MIDI In port of your device to the MIDI Out
port on the back of Mbox 2.
MIDI Out
MIDI In
Mbox 2 MIDI connections
42
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Mbox 2 connections for line-level stereo input source
appendix a
Configuring AMS (Mac OS X Only)
Audio MIDI Setup
Pro Tools recognizes the ports on your MIDI interface as generic ports. With Mac OS X, you use
Apple’s Audio MIDI Setup (AMS) utility to identify external MIDI devices connected to your
MIDI interface and configure your MIDI studio
for use with Pro Tools.
2 Click MIDI Devices. AMS scans your system for
connected MIDI interfaces. If your MIDI interface is properly connected, it appears in the window with each of its ports numbered.
To configure your MIDI studio in AMS:
1 Do one of the following:
• Launch Audio MIDI Setup (located in Macintosh HD/Applications/Utilities).
– or –
• In Pro Tools, choose Setup > MIDI > MIDI
Studio.
Audio MIDI Setup (MIDI Devices)
3 For any MIDI devices connected to the MIDI
interface, click Add Device. A new external device
icon with the default MIDI keyboard image will
appear.
4 Drag the new device icon to a convenient lo-
cation within the window.
Appendix A: Configuring AMS (Mac OS X Only)
43
5 Connect the MIDI device to the MIDI inter-
face by clicking the arrow for the appropriate
output port of the device and dragging a connection or “cable” to the input arrow of the corresponding port of the MIDI interface.
2 Select a manufacturer and model for the new
device from the corresponding pop-up menus.
(If the Manufacturer and Model pop-up menus
do not provide a name for your particular device, you can type a name.)
Naming a new MIDI device
Making MIDI input and output connections
6 Click the arrow for the appropriate input port
of the device and drag a cable to the output arrow of the corresponding port of the MIDI interface.
To remove a connection, select the cable and
press Delete. To delete all connections, click
Clear Cables.
7 Repeat steps 3–6 for each MIDI device in your
MIDI setup.
To configure an external MIDI device:
1 Select the external device icon and click Show
Info (or double-click the new device icon).
External Device Icon
44
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
For Manufacturer and Model names, AMS
refers to one or more files with the suffix
“.middev” in the directory Root/Library/
Audio/MIDI Devices. Pro Tools installs a
file that contains information for many
commercially available MIDI devices,
named “Digidesign Device List.middev.” If
the Manufacturer or Model names for any of
your external MIDI devices is not available
in the AMS Manufacturer and Model popup menus, you can add them by editing the
.middev file in any text editor (such as
TextEdit).
3 Click the More Properties arrow to expand the
dialog, then enable the appropriate MIDI channels (1–16) for the Transmits and Receives options. (These determine which channels the
device will use to send and receive MIDI.)
4 Click the device image. The window expands
to show images for various MIDI devices (such
as keyboards, modules, interfaces, and mixers).
Select an icon for your device.
Selecting a device icon
Enabling MIDI channels
To use your own custom icons, you can
place TIFF image files in /Library/
Audio/MIDI Devices/Generic/Images, and
they will appear as choices in the AMS
device window.
5 Click OK.
The device names you enter appear as MIDI input and output choices in Pro Tools.
Appendix A: Configuring AMS (Mac OS X Only)
45
MIDI Patch Name Support
Pro Tools supports XML (Extensible Markup
Language) for storing and importing patch
names for you external MIDI devices. Pro Tools
installs MIDI patch name files (.midnam) for the
factory default patch names of many common
MIDI devices. These files reside in directories,
sorted by manufacturer, in Macintosh HD/
Library/Audio/MIDI Patch Names/Digidesign.
4 In the Patch Select dialog, click Change.
Change button
Patch Select dialog
To import MIDI patch names into Pro Tools:
1 Verify the MIDI Device name in the Audio
5 In the Open dialog, navigate to /Library/Au-
MIDI Setup window (see “Audio MIDI Setup” on
page 43).
dio/MIDI Patch Names/Digidesign/<name of
manufacturer>, and select the MIDI Patch Name
file (.midnam) for the MIDI device.
2 Verify the Instrument or MIDI track output is
correctly assigned to the MIDI device.
6 Click Open.
3 Click the Instrument or MIDI track Patch Se-
lect button.
The Patch Select dialog is populated with patch
names and the Patch Name Bank pop-up menu
appears in the upper left hand corner of the window.
Once patch names have been imported into
Pro Tools, they are available for that MIDI device in all sessions.
To clear patch names:
 In the Patch Select dialog, click Clear, and the
click Done.
Patch Select button Patch Select button
(Edit window)
(Mix window)
Patch Select button
46
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
MIDI patch name files (.midnam) can be
edited in any text editor, or you can use
third-party patch librarian and editor software to create your own custom patch
names.
appendix b
Configuring MIDI Studio Setup
(Windows Only)
MIDI Studio Setup
MIDI Studio Setup (MSS) lets you configure the
MIDI controllers and sound modules that are
connected to your system, and control the routing of MIDI data between your MIDI equipment
and Pro Tools.
MSS automatically finds MIDI interfaces, and
lets you specify a custom name for each of the
MIDI ports within the MIDI Studio Setup document.
MIDI Studio Setup Window
The MIDI Studio Setup window is organized
into three sections. Interface controls are at the
top of the window. All the currently defined instruments are displayed in the Instrument
Name list on the left side of the window. A detailed view of MIDI parameters is shown in the
Properties section on the right.
MSS also supports XML-based patch file names
for storing and importing patch names for your
external MIDI devices.
Entire MIDI Studio Setup configurations created
within MSS can be imported and exported.
MIDI Studio Setup window
Appendix B: Configuring MIDI Studio Setup (Windows Only)
47
Interface Controls
Properties Section
Create Adds a new instrument to the Instrument Name list.
The Properties section lets you edit information
for new instruments, or instrument currently selected in the Instrument list.
Delete Deletes the instrument or instruments
selected in the Instrument Name list.
Import Imports an existing MIDI Studio Setup
file.
Export Exports the current MIDI Studio Setup
file.
Show Duplicate Emulated Ports When this option is selected and you are using a MIDI interface that supports timestamping (such as MIDI
I/O), in addition to the MIDI ports on Mbox 2,
the MIDI Studio setup window shows both the
DirectMusic time-stamped output ports, and
non-stamped duplicate emulated output ports.
Some MIDI Interfaces will not properly load
or unload their drivers unless you quit and
re-launch Pro Tools. Check the documentation that came with your MIDI interface for
more information.
Instrument List
The Instrument list contains all the currently
defined instruments. Selecting an instrument in
the list displays that instrument’s properties in
the Properties section of the window.
MIDI Studio Setup Properties section
When a previously defined instrument is selected in the Instrument list, the Properties section changes to reflect the properties of the selected instrument.
To define an instrument with MIDI Studio Setup:
1 Choose Setup > MIDI > MIDI Studio.
2 Click Create.
3 In the Instrument Name field, type the name
of your instrument, and press Enter.
If you do not enter an instrument name, the
Instrument Name field will automatically
inherit information from the Manufacturer
and Model pop-up menu.
4 Set a manufacturer and model for the new device from the corresponding pop-up menus. If
the Manufacturer and Model pop-up menus do
not provide a name for your particular device,
select None.
5 From the Input pop-up menu, select the input
port on your MIDI interface that is connected to
the MIDI Out of your instrument.
48
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
6 From the Output pop-up menu, select the output port on your MIDI interface that is connected to the MIDI In of your instrument.
7 Enable the appropriate MIDI channels (1–16)
for the Send Channels and Receive Channels options (These determine which channels send
and receive MIDI.)
Instrument Name
The Instrument Name field shows the user-definable instrument name for the currently selected instrument.
Manufacturer
The Manufacturer pop-up menu provides a list
of MIDI equipment manufacturers. This list is
derived from the XML-based MIDI device files.
Model
The Model pop-up menu provides a list of MIDI
devices, filtered by the manufacturer name. This
list is derived from the XML-based MIDI device
files provided with your Pro Tools installation.
For more information, see “MIDI Patch
Name Support” on page 49.
Input Port
The Input Port pop-up menu displays a list of
available MIDI interface input ports. Inputs will
include Mbox 2 and any additional MIDI interfaces enabled on your system. The MIDI interface port that is set and displayed here is the
port through which MIDI data is sent from the
external MIDI device specified in the Instrument Name field into your MIDI interface.
Output Port
The Output Port pop-up menu displays a list of
available MIDI interface output ports. The port
set and displayed here is the port through which
MIDI data is sent from your MIDI interface to
the MIDI device specified in the Instrument
Name field.
If you set the output port to None, the defined instrument will not appear as a choice
in a MIDI Output selector.
Send Channels
The Send Channels grid sets the send channels
for the MIDI device specified in the Instrument
Name field.
Receive Channels
The Receive Channels grid sets the receive channels for the MIDI device specified in the Instrument Name field.
MIDI Patch Name Support
Pro Tools supports XML (Extensible Markup
Language) for storing and importing patch
names for your external MIDI devices. Pro Tools
installs MIDI patch name files (.midnam) for the
factory default patch names of many common
MIDI devices. These files reside in directories,
sorted by manufacturer, in C:\Program Files\
Common Files\Digidesign\MIDI Patch Names\
Digidesign.
If you set the input port to None, the defined
instrument will not appear as a choice in a
MIDI Input selector.
Appendix B: Configuring MIDI Studio Setup (Windows Only)
49
To import MIDI patch names into Pro Tools:
1 Verify the MIDI Device name in the MIDI Stu-
dio Setup window (see “MIDI Studio Setup” on
page 47).
The Patch Select dialog is populated with patch
names and the Patch Name Bank pop-up menu
appears in the upper left hand corner of the window.
2 Verify the Instrument or MIDI track output is
correctly assigned to the MIDI device.
3 Click the Instrument or MIDI track Patch Se-
lect button.
Patch Select dialog with patch names
Patch Select button Patch Select button
(Edit window)
(Mix window)
Once patch names have been imported into
Pro Tools, they are available for that MIDI device in all sessions.
Patch Select button
4 In the Patch Select dialog, click Change.
To clear patch names:
 In the Patch Select dialog, click Clear and then
click Done.
MIDI patch name files (.midnam) can be
edited in any text editor, or you can use
third-party patch librarian and editor software to create your own custom patch
names.
Change button
Patch Select dialog
5 In the Open dialog, navigate to C:\Program
Files\Common Files\Digidesign\MIDI Patch
Names\Digidesign\<name of manufacturer>,
and select the MIDI Patch Name file (.midnam)
for the MIDI device.
6 Click Open.
50
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
appendix c
Hard Drive Configuration and Maintenance
It is recommended that you start with a newly
formatted external or secondary internal audio
drive. You should also periodically defragment
your audio drive to ensure continued system
performance.
Always back up any important data on your
drive before formatting it, as it will erase all
data on the drive.
Avoid Recording to the
System Drive
Recording to your system drive is not recommended. Recording and playback on a system
drive may result in lower track counts or fewer
plug-ins.
Supported Drive Formats and
Drive Types
Drive Formats
Mac Mac systems should use drives formatted
with HFS+ or HFS file system only.
HFS drives are supported as Transfer drives
only.
Windows Windows XP systems should use drives
formatted as NTFS only.
Windows systems can also support Mac
drives formatted with HFS+ system (also
commonly referred to as Mac OS Extended).
Refer to the Pro Tools Reference Guide for
more information (Help > Pro Tools Reference Guide).
Hard drive performance depends on factors including system configuration, number of tracks,
session sample rate, density of edits, and the use
of crossfades and other processes such as Beat
Detective in a session.
For complete hard drive requirements, visit our
website at:
www.digidesign.com/compatibility
Hard Drive Configuration and Maintenance
51
SCSI Hard Drives
We recommend qualified SCSI hard drives and a
qualified SCSI host bus adapter (HBA) card or
(on Windows systems) a qualified built-in SCSI
HBA connector on the motherboard.
For complete information on track count and
the supported number and configuration of
SCSI drives, visit our website at:
www.digidesign.com/compatibility
Formatting an Audio Drive
Formatting Mac Audio Drives
For optimum performance, audio drives should
be formatted as Mac OS Extended (Journaled).
To format an audio drive:
1 Launch the Disk Utility application, located in
Macintosh HD/Applications/Utilities.
FireWire Hard Drives
2 Click the Erase tab.
We recommend qualified FireWire drives and
(on Windows systems) a qualified FireWire host
adapter.
For complete information on track count and
the supported number and configuration of
FireWire drives, visit our website at:
www.digidesign.com/compatibility
IDE/ATA/SATA Hard Drives
A qualified internal IDE/ATA/SATA drive may be
used as a dedicated audio drive.
For complete information on track count with
internal drives, visit our website at:
www.digidesign.com/compatibility
Disk Utility (Mac OS X)
3 Select the drive you want to initialize in the
column on the left side of the window.
4 Choose the Mac OS Extended (Journaled) format.
Do not choose the “Case-Sensitive” format
option. Pro Tools will not operate properly
with case-sensitive formatted drives.
5 Type a name for the new volume.
6 If you plan to connect the drive to a Mac OS 9
computer, select Install Mac OS 9 Drivers.
7 Click Erase.
The drive appears on the Desktop with the new
volume name.
52
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Formatting Windows Audio Drives
For optimal performance, audio drives should
be formatted as NTFS.
Pro Tools only supports Basic drive types.
Do not convert the drive to a Dynamic type.
To format an audio drive:
1 Right-click Computer (Windows Vista) or My
Computer (Windows XP) and choose Manage.
4 If the volume is “Unallocated,” do the following:
• In the Disk Management window, Rightclick the hard drive you will use for audio
and choose New Partition.
• In the New Partition Wizard window, click
Next.
• When prompted, select the partition type.
We recommend using Primary partitions,
instead of Extended partitions.
2 Under Storage, choose Disk Management.
• Follow the on-screen instructions to select
a partition size and other partition settings.
• When prompted, choose a file system. For
optimum performance, audio drives
should be formatted as NTFS.
• Select Perform a quick format.
• Make sure Enable file and folder compression
is not selected.
• Set the Allocation unit size to Default.
• Click OK.
Disk Management window (Windows XP)
3 If the volume is “Healthy,” do the following:
Healthy volumes are volumes that have previously been partitioned and formatted.
• In the Disk Management window, rightclick the hard drive you will use for audio
and choose Format.
• In the Format window, name the volume.
• Choose a file system. For optimum performance, audio drives should be formatted as
NTFS.
• Select Perform a quick format.
• Make sure Enable file and folder compression
is not selected.
• Set the Allocation unit size to Default.
• Click OK.
Partitioning Drives
Partitioning creates a logical volume or volumes
on a physical drive, almost as if you were creating virtual hard drives. Partitions can then be
formatted with the appropriate file system
(NTFS for Windows, HFS+ for Mac).
Mac OS allows drives larger than 4096 MB
to be seen as whole volumes. Drives must be
initialized with a disk utility that recognizes the 2 terabyte limit. Single Pro Tools
audio files cannot exceed 3.4 GB in size.
Windows XP allows drives formatted with
the NTFS file system to be seen as whole
volumes. Single Pro Tools audio files cannot exceed 3.4 GB in size.
Hard Drive Configuration and Maintenance
53
Seek Times on Partitioned Drives
Seek times are actually faster on partitioned
drives (assuming that reads and writes are performed on a single partition), since the heads
only have to seek within the partition boundaries, rather than the whole capacity of the
drive.
Smaller partitions perform faster than larger partitions, but this comes at the expense of contiguous storage space. When you partition a drive,
you will need to find the compromise that best
suits your performance and storage requirements.
Avoid distributing audio files within a session over different partitions on the same
drive since this will adversely affect drive
performance.
Defragmenting an Audio Drive
Mac Systems
When working with larger files (such as video),
you can limit fragmentation by backing up your
important files to another disk, erasing the files
from the original hard disk, then copying the
files back, instead of doing a defragmentation.
In multitrack recording, audio tracks are written
in discrete files, spaced evenly across the disk.
While fragmentation of individual files may be
zero, the tracks may be far enough apart that
playback will still be very seek-intensive. Also,
the remaining free space on the disk will be discontiguous, increasing the likelihood of file
fragmentation on subsequent record passes.
Increased fragmentation increases the chance of
disk errors, which can interfere with playback of
audio, and result in performance errors.
On Windows, to avoid fragmentation, format drives with higher cluster sizes (such as
32K).
Optimizing (Defragmenting) Drives
To prevent fragmentation, you can optimize
your drive, which rearranges your files into a
contiguous format. Most optimizing software
lets you run a check on a drive to find out the
percentage of fragmentation. If your drive
shows moderate to heavy fragmentation, you
should consider optimizing it.
If you use your system for intensive editing, or if
you frequently delete audio or fade files from
your hard drive, you may need to optimize your
drives on a weekly basis, or even every few days,
since it doesn’t take long for even a large hard
drive to become fragmented.
Window Systems
Periodically defragment audio drives to maintain
system performance.
For maximum recording and playback efficiency, data should be written to your hard
drive in a contiguous fashion—minimizing the
seek requirements to play back the data. Unfortunately, your computer can’t always store the
sound files in this way and must write to disk
wherever it can find space.
54
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Backing Up Data Before Optimizing
Since your files will be rewritten by the optimization process, always make a backup copy of
the data on your hard drive before you optimize
it. You should also use a hard drive utility to find
and repair any problems before optimizing data
or re-initializing your drives. If there is any damage to your hard drive's directories prior to optimizing, serious data loss may result.
Defragmenting Windows Audio Drives
To defragment an audio drive (Windows Vista):
1 Choose Start > Control Panel.
2 Click System and Maintenance.
3 Click Performance Information and Tools.
4 Click Advanced Tools.
Using Mac Drives on Windows
Systems
Pro Tools for Windows lets you record and play
back sessions directly from a Mac-formatted
(HFS+) drive connected to a Windows system.
This functionality requires that all Mac session
and audio files be stored on Mac-formatted
drives.
5 Click Open Disk Defragmenter.
6 In the Disk Defragmenter window, click the
Defragment Now button.
The Defragment Now command defragments all your hard drives. This can take a
lot of time, especially on systems with multiple drives.
Advanced users can use the command line
tool Defrag.exe to defragment individual
drives. See your Windows Vista documentation for more information.
To defragment an audio drive (Windows XP):
1 Right-click My Computer and choose Manage.
2 Under Storage, choose Disk Defragmenter.
3 In the Disk Defragmenter window, choose the
drive you want to defragment
4 Click the Defragment button and follow the
During Pro Tools installation, make sure to select the Mac HFS+ Disk Support option. This option lets your Pro Tools system read, write, record, and play back using Mac-formatted HFS+
disks.
For information on using the Mac HFS+
Disk Support option, see the HFS+ Disk Support Option Guide.
For information on sharing sessions between Mac and Windows systems, see the
Pro Tools Reference Guide (Help >
Pro Tools Reference Guide).
Formatting and Maintaining HFS+
Drives
To format and partition any drives as HFS+, connect the drives to a Mac computer and use the
Apple OS X Disk Utility.
on-screen instructions.
When defragmenting is complete, close the
Computer Management window.
Hard Drive Configuration and Maintenance
55
Hard Disk Storage Space
Mono audio tracks recorded with 16-bit resolution at 44.1 kHz (CD quality) require approximately
5 MB of hard disk space per minute. The same tracks recorded with 24-bit resolution require about
7.5 MB per minute.
Stereo audio tracks recorded with 16-bit resolution at 44.1 kHz (CD quality) require approximately
10 MB of hard disk space per minute. The same tracks recorded with 24-bit resolution require about
15 MB per minute.
Table 4 lists the required disk space for certain track numbers and track lengths, to help you estimate
your hard disk usage.
Table 4. Required hard drive space for audio tracks (44.1 kHz and 48 kHz sessions shown)
Number of Tracks and Length
16-bit at
44.1 kHz
16-bit at
48 kHz
24-bit at
44.1 kHz
24-bit at
48 kHz
1 mono track, 1 minute
5 MB
5.5 MB
7.5 MB
8.2 MB
1 stereo track (or two mono
tracks), 5 minutes
50 MB
55 MB
75 MB
83 MB
1 stereo track (or two mono
tracks), 60 minutes
600 MB
662 MB
900 MB
991 MB
24 mono tracks, 5 minutes
600 MB
662 MB
900 MB
991 MB
7 GB
7.8 GB
10.5 GB
11.6 GB
32 mono tracks, 5 minutes
800 MB
883 MB
1.2 GB
1.3 GB
32 mono tracks, 60 minutes
9.4 GB
10.4 GB
14 GB
15.4 GB
24 mono tracks, 60 minutes
56
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
appendix d
Troubleshooting
Backing Up Your Work
It is highly recommended that you back up your
work on a regular basis, and especially before
making changes to your system configuration.
Backing Up Your Session Data
Back up your session and audio data frequently.
There are a variety of media that are suited to
back up projects of various sizes, from automated tape backup systems to high-capacity optical drives, or to CD burners.
Backing Up Your System
Configuration
After configuring your system and Pro Tools,
you should save an image of your system drive
using a backup utility such as Norton Ghost
(Windows) or Bombich Carbon Copy Cloner
(Mac). By doing this, you can quickly restore
your system configuration and settings if you
encounter any problems.
The best way to back up an entire session is to
use the Save Copy In command. This command
lets you save the session file and all of its associated files to a new location.
You can also use the Auto Save Backup feature (in the Operation Preferences page) to
have Pro Tools automatically save backups
of the session file while you work.
Troubleshooting
57
Common Issues
Audio Interface Is Not Recognized
Problem
Pro Tools Won’t Launch
Problem
When you double-click the Pro Tools application or a Pro Tools session file, Pro Tools doesn’t
launch, or displays an error message.
Possible Solutions
Check to be sure your computer has the required amount of RAM to launch Pro Tools.

 Try a complete restart. Turn off your audio interfaces, computer peripherals and your computer, and then turn them on again in the
proper sequence.
If you tried to launch Pro Tools by doubleclicking a Pro Tools session file, do the following:

• Close any error message.
• Double-click the Pro Tools application.
• In Pro Tools, choose File > Open Session to
open the session.
Reinstall the Pro Tools application, using the
Pro Tools Installer disc.

When you launch Pro Tools it does not recognize an audio interface, or a connected audio interface is not available.
Possible Solutions
 Turn off your computer and check to be sure
your cables are properly and securely connected
to your computer and to your audio interface.
 Verify that your Hardware Setup dialog settings are correct.
Performance Factors
There are several conditions that may adversely
affect the performance of Pro Tools. These include:
Network Connections Close any network connections unless you are using them for network
interchange of audio data.
Background Applications Any software utilities
that run in the background or generate disk activity, such as virus protection, disk optimization, or file savers, should be turned off or removed.
Screen Savers Screen saver software should be
completely disabled on your computer before
running Pro Tools.
Power Saver Features Some automatic power
saver features, such as those that spin down the
system hard drive, can affect Pro Tools performance. These features should be turned off.
58
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Before You Call Technical
Support
Digidesign Hardware
• Type of cards, interfaces, or peripherals
Hard Drives
Register Your System
Register your purchase immediately after reviewing the Digidesign Registration Information Card included with every Pro Tools system.
Registering your purchase is the only way you
become eligible to receive complimentary technical support and future upgrade offers. Registering is one of the most important steps to
complete as a new user.
• Make, Model
• Drive size (GB)
• Drive speed (RPM)
• Drive type (SCSI, FireWire, IDE/ATA)
• Utility used to format the drive
• Number and size of partitions on the drive
Digidesign Software
• Pro Tools software version
• Plug-in versions
Gather Important Information
We want to help you resolve problems as
quickly and efficiently as possible. If you have
the following information handy when you
contact Technical Support, it will make the diagnosis of your problem easier. Take a few minutes
to collect the following basic information:
• Other Digidesign software
• Additional plug-ins from Digidesign Development Partners
Other Hardware
Refer to the manufacturer’s documentation for
operational details.
The most common hardware additions include:
System Information
Computer
• Make, model, processor speed
• Amount of system RAM
• Operating system (version of Windows or
Mac OS)
• Any Drivers, Disk Utilities, or other systemrelated applications you may have installed
• 1394 (FireWire) cards for Windows systems
(manufacturer, model)
• Video Capture cards (manufacturer, model)
To verify that your hardware is qualified for use
with your Pro Tools system, refer to the latest
compatibility information on our website
(www.digidesign.com/compatibility).
Other Software
If you are using other audio or video applications, refer to the manufacturer’s documentation for operational details.
Make note of any other software that was running when a problem occurred.
Troubleshooting
59
Diagnostic Information
Note any DAE errors or other error codes you encounter. Additonally, note the ability to reproduce the problem under different conditions,
for example, with another session, or after
changing settings (such as the Hardware Buffer
Size).
60
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
appendix e
Resources
Whether you are new to Pro Tools or just starting out with your new system, we encourage
you to read and utilize the many guides that
Pro Tools provides. There are also useful online
resources available, giving you everything from
Pro Tools tips to Pro Tools answers.
About the Pro Tools Guides
In addition to any printed guides included with
your system, PDF versions of the printed guides
and many additional Pro Tools guides and Read
Mes are installed automatically during Pro Tools
installation (see “Documentation Installed Automatically with Pro Tools” on page 62).
Printed copies of the Pro Tools Reference
Guide and other guides in the Pro Tools guide
set can be purchased separately from the
DigiStore (www.digidesign.com).
Printed Setup Guide
This printed Setup Guide for your system gives
you detailed instructions for setting up and configuring software and hardware for optimum
performance.
Printed Getting Started with
Pro Tools Guide
The printed Getting Started with Pro Tools LE has
tutorials on using Pro Tools (such as recording
in a Pro Tools session, importing audio from a
CD, and creating an audio CD from a Pro Tools
session).
Guides Accessible in Pro Tools
The main Pro Tools guides are accessible from
the Pro Tools Help menu. (Choose Help, then select a guide.)
These include:
• Shortcuts Guide, which provides a complete list
of keyboard and Right-click shortcuts for
Pro Tools.
• DigiRack Plug-ins Guide, which describes the
DigiRack plug-ins included with Pro Tools for
both real-time and file-based audio processing.
• Pro Tools Menus Guide, which covers all the
Pro Tools on-screen menus.
• Pro Tools Reference Guide, which explains
Pro Tools software in detail.
Resources
61
Documentation Installed
Automatically with Pro Tools
When you install Pro Tools, you get useful PDF
versions of many Pro Tools guides and
Read Mes. This documentation can be found in
the following locations:
Mac Applications/Digidesign/Documentation
Products and Developers Learn about our products; download demo software or learn about
our Development Partners and their plug-ins,
applications, and hardware.
Windows C:\Program Files\Digidesign\
Documentation
News and Events Get the our latest product
news or sign up for a Pro Tools demo.
To view or print PDF guides, you can use
Adobe Reader or Apple Preview (Mac only).
Read Me Files
These contain late-breaking information and
known issues pertaining to Pro Tools software
and hardware configurations. Read Me files are
installed in Documentation folder when you install Pro Tools.
About www.digidesign.com
Our website (www.digidesign.com) is your best
online source for information to help you get
the most out of your Pro Tools system. The following are just a few of the services and features
available.
Product Registration Register your purchase online.
Support and Downloads Contact Digidesign
Technical Support or Customer Service; download software updates and the latest online
manuals; browse the Compatibility documents
for system requirements; search the online Answerbase; or join the worldwide Pro Tools community on the Digidesign User Conference.
62
Training and Education Study on your own using
courses available online or find out how you can
learn in a classroom setting at a certified
Pro Tools training center.
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
Pro Tools Accelerated Videos Watch the series of
free tutorial videos. Accelerated Videos are designed to help you get up and running with
Pro Tools and its plug-ins quickly.
Helpful Online Resources
Once you get going, here are some helpful online resources:
• Get useful information, help, and tips from
the worldwide community of Pro Tools users
at Digidesign User Conference (DUC). Go to:
http://duc.digidesign.com
• For questions about installation, visit
our online Answerbase. Go to:
http://www.digidesign.com/answerbase
• If you can’t find your answer on the DUC or
Answerbase, contact our email support. Go to:
http://www.digidesign.com/tsr
index
A
F
ASIO driver (Windows) 13
audio
digital connections 41
audio drivers
ASIO driver (Windows) 13
CoreAudio driver (Mac) 7
WaveDriver (Windows) 13
Audio MIDI Setup (AMS) (Macintosh) 43
authorizing Pro Tools LE
Mac 7
Windows 12
FireWire requirements 52
C
Cache Size 20
Clean Uninstall (Mac) 8
Clock Source 22
and digital output 36
Internal setting 22
S/PDIF (digital) setting 22
connecting Mbox 2
Mac 6
CoreAudio driver (Mac) 7
CPU Usage Limit 17, 18
G
gain
headphones 29
input 31
H
hard drives
drive formats 51
FireWire requirements 52
formatting 52, 53, 52
IDE/ATA requirements 52
maintenance 51, 54
optimizing 54
partitioning 53
requirements 3
SCSI requirements 52
space requirements 56
Hardware Buffer Size 16
headphones
gain control 29
output 29
D
DAE Playback Buffer Size 19
DMA option (Windows), enabling 25
drive formatting
Mac 52
Windows 53
drive maintenance 51
drive requirements 3
E
Energy Saver (Mac), turning off 23
Index
63
I
I/O Setup
Windows 22
IDE/ATA requirements 52
Ignore Errors During Playback/Record option 19
indicators
peak level 31
S/PDIF 29
USB connection 29
input and output connectors 32
inputs
analog 33
digital 32
gain 31
monitoring 30
installing Pro Tools LE
Mac 5
Windows 9
installing QuickTime (Windows) 11
J
journaling (Mac), enabling 25
K
key commands 3
L
latency
Hardware Buffer Size 16
see monitoring
M
Mbox 2
back panel 32
connecting (Mac) 6
features 1, 29
removing the handle 31
MIDI
connections 42
requirements 2
setup (Macintosh) 43, 47
MIDI Studio Setup (MSS) (Windows) 47
Minimize Additional I/O Latency option 19
mix control (Mbox 2) 30
monitoring
when overdubbing 30
zero latency 30
mono switch 30
N
network cards (Windows), disabling 27
network connections 58
O
optimizing hard drives 54
outputs
digital 32
Monitor outputs 33
S/PDIF mirroring 41
P
partitioning hard drives 53
Patch Select dialog
Macintosh 46
Windows 50
peak indicators 31
phantom power 38
indicator 31
when to use 31, 37
Playback Engine
RTAS Processors setting 17
Plug-in Streaming Buffer 21
Plug-in Streaming Buffer Size 20
plug-ins
multiprocessors 17
RTAS Processors setting 17
power
management settings (Windows) 26
Pro Tools
demo session (Windows) 8, 13
removing (Windows) 8, 14
Pro Tools LE
capabilities 2, 16
installing (Mac) 5, 9
processor performance (Mac) 23
Processor Scheduling performance (Windows) 28
Q
QuickTime
installing (Windows) 11
64
Mbox 2 Setup Guide
R
U
ratio control (Mbox 2) 30
recording
digital inputs 41
removing Pro Tools
Windows 8, 14
RTAS Processors setting 17
uninstalling Pro Tools
Windows 8, 14
USB connection indicator 29
User Account Control (UAC)
disabling 27
W
S
S/PDIF 32
input indicator 29
mirroring 41
Safe Uninstall (Mac) 8
Sample Rate 21
screen savers 58
SCSI requirements 52
Software Update (Mac), turning off 23
sources
analog 33
DI 33
digital 32
line 33
microphone 33
selecting 31
Spotlight indexing (Mac), disabling 25
Startup items (Windows), disabling 28
Stereo Width control 40, 42
system
optional optimizations (Windows) 27
recommended optimizations (Windows) 27, 25
shutting down 15
system optimization
Mac 23
Windows 27
system settings
Cache Size 20, 22, 18
Hardware Buffer Size 16
I/O Setup 22
Plug-in Streaming Buffer 21, 20
Sample Rate 21
WaveDriver (Windows) 13
website 62
T
technical support
product registration required 59
TRS 37
Index
65
www.digidesign.com
DIGIDESIGN
2001 Junipero Serra Boulevard
Daly City, CA 94014-3886 USA
TECHNICAL SUPPORT (USA)
Visit the Digidesign Online Support Center
at www.digidesign.com/support
PRODUCT INFORMATION
For company and product information,
visit us on the web at www.digidesign.com