Pro Tools doesn't need much of an introduction. It has been the industry standard for recording studio software for over two decades. The way that Pro Tools is set up and the way the user interacts with the interface has been the guidebook for all other DAWs.
Pro Tools is complex software with so much audio editing capability that few uncover all of its potential. It's designed for the professionals – that's not to say that novices can't use this software, but it is fairly technical compared to something like GarageBand. While many programs focus on the creative process, enabling you to create new sounds, Pro Tools focuses more on the post-creation process, which shows in its editing prowess.
Comp recording selects pieces from a bunch of recording takes and compiles them into one master recording using the best parts of each individual take. If there is a difficult solo or section of a song, you can take multiple cracks at it and use the best pieces from each one to form a great-sounding master take.
Most recording programs have this ability, so why is Pro Tools any different? What's special about Pro Tools' comp recording is that this studio music software compiles all of the audio takes into what it calls a playlist. Within this playlist, all of the audio takes are conveniently placed in order. Pro Tools also color-codes each take, so you easily see what section of audio came from what take.
When the playlist is activated, it creates a blank audio track for the master take, above all of the recorded audio. The beauty of Pro Tools' take comping is the simplicity. From here, you can simply highlight the section of audio that you like from each recording and click on the up arrow to place the audio into the blank master track. You don't have to wade through toolbars or change tools anytime you want to highlight, cut or add a piece of audio. You can later put in the finishing touches by adding crossfades to the audio to make it sound like a clean single audio take.
Pro Tools also has an incredible time-stretching algorithm to let you slow down, speed up, lengthen or shorten a piece of audio without making it sound awful. With many professional recording software programs, after you manipulate a piece of audio over and over, it destroys the audio quality. With Pro Tools, you can stretch, move and adjust the audio, and it still sounds natural after you slow it down or speed it up.
We could go on and on about all of the audio editing within Pro Tools. It's the reason why professional music engineers have used this program for over two decades. Record comping is really just a snippet of what this program can do, but for recording artists, especially those who know the value of a great take, this intuitive process is really worth highlighting.