Harmonious Audio Logo

Must Know Pro Tools Shortcuts

Audio Pixels - The Future of Speaker Design?

If you want to be a Pro Tools wizard or simply save time on your mixing, learning keyboard shortcuts is a must! Not only will they make you look more professional in front of your clients, they will speed up your mixing efficiency and reduce the amount of time following the mouse cursor around the screen. Let’s examine some common and useful shortcuts, and how they can be utilised.

Bring up the new track dialogue

Mac: (Command+Shift+N) Windows: (Ctrl+Shift+N)

After opening a new session, this is one of the first things you will need to do. This shortcut command is especially useful during recordings.

Assigning Inputs and Outputs

Change parameter on ALL: Mac: (Option and click on Input/Output) Windows: (Alt and click on Input/Output)

Cascade ALL Tracks sequentially: Mac: (Option+Command and click Input/Output)Windows: (Alt+Ctrl and click on Input/Output)


Mac: (Command+Z) Windows: (Ctrl+Z)

This should be the first one you memorise.

Smart Tool

Mac: (F6 & F7) or (F7 & F8) Windows: (F6 & F7) or (F7 & F8)

The smart tool is like a Swiss army knife for Pro Tools. The function of the smart tools changes depending on where you place the mouse over a clip. The available tools are: Selector, Grabber, and Trim, and you can also perform fades and crossfades.

Focus on Clip

Mac: (Option+F) Windows: (Alt+F)

To zoom in horizontally on the Edit selection without affecting vertical zoom.

Split Clip

Mac: (Option+E) Windows: (Alt+E)

Cut a clip into two clips.

Import Audio

Mac: (Shift+Cmnd+I) Windows: (Shift+Ctrl+I)

Allows you to import audio files or clips into your Pro Tools session.

Strip Silence Dialogue

Mac: (Cmnd+U) Windows: (Ctrl+U)

Analyzes audio selections across multiple tracks, and removes (or extracts) any area of silence.

Switch between Mix and EDIT windows

Mac: (Cmnd+=) Windows: (Ctrl+=)

Unless you are running dual monitors, you will need to switch between the Mix and Edit windows often. Memorise this now.

Create Group

Mac: (Cmnd+G) Windows: (Ctrl+G)

Groups are useful for editing several tracks together in the same way.

Consolidate a Clip

Mac: (Shift+Option+3) Windows: (Shift+Alt+3)

This is used when you want to consolidate multiple clips into a single clip. Very useful once a track or track range reaches a satisfactory state such as a verse or chorus.

Horizontal Zoom

Mac: (R (Zoom Out) T (Zoom In)) Windows: (R (Zoom Out) T (Zoom In))

Lets you zoom in and out horizontally on track data.


  • The less you use your mouse, the quicker you will be able to navigate in Pro Tools
  • Have a printed list of shortcuts nearby to refer to
  • You can purchase purpose made colour coded keyboards, or keyboard covers for Pro Tools here.

Windows and Mac Keyboard Conversions

Cmnd (Mac) = Ctrl (Win)
Option (Mac) = Alt (Win)
Ctrl (Mac) = Start (Win)

Shift is the same in both.