If you’re a Pro Tools user, you were probably very excited when they announced the ability to offline bounce.
If you’re pretty much any other DAW user, you’re probably wondering why it took so long for PT to catch up – you’ve had the same feature for ages!
Either way, it’s a very convenient and fast way to get your music into a stereo file.
But guess what? When you’re bouncing something that matters, you should never do an offline bounce. Here’s why.
When you offline bounce, you lose two things. The first thing you lose is the chance to hear the entire mix from start to finish. This is actually a pretty big deal.
You should critically listen to the mix as it bounces out. You can catch clips, crunches, or imperfect balances. It’s a great way to “proofread” your mix. Also, you’ll be certain that the mix is ready to be sent to the client.
The other reason you shouldn’t do an offline bounce is because it can actually add artifacts into your mix without you even knowing it. In a session recently, I decided to offline bounce a few stems to be mixed in a different DAW. After I imported them in, I heard a few clicks and pops that weren’t in the original tracks. I had to go back and re-bounce them in real time to make sure they were right.
Offline bounce is great for a quick and dirty rough mix, but think twice before using it on your final mix or master!