Is there any way that I can do the same operation to selected tracks without grouping?

For example. I want to mute a few selected tracks together without grouping them. Is there any way I can achieve this?


You can use a VCA master…

I don’t think that a method to just select a bunch of tracks and mute them with one click exists, if that’s what you are looking for.

But all other DAWs have this function. And it’s easy to make it happen. That’s a very convenient function for mixing.

Go to Window > Keyboard shortcuts, then in Editor > Editor, you have “Toggle Mute”. Assign a key (eg. “m”).
Then when you select one or many tracks (by SHIFT/CTRL-clicking the tracks’ headers), you can use this key to toggle mute on the selected tracks.

Nice!!! Thank you!!!

At least there is a solution!

“Things that mute together (generally) group together”

Is it possible that the track is included in several groups, such as e.g. in Pro Tools.

No, Ardour uses VCAs for that sort of thing, which are more flexible and can form both parallel and nested (heirarchical arrangements).

That’s not true. All mixing engineers know that. Let me give you an example. You can make 3 or more groups for your backing vocal based on their parts. But sometimes you need to mute them all or solo them all.


“group” here includes VCAs, not just editor groups. And they are, typically, what you want.

to expand: you can have the following vocal VCAs:


You can have complex nesting/sharing of these groups, so that you can, for example, mute all vocals, or all backing vocals, or just lead, or left backing or right backing or the bass backing vocals etc. etc.

“All mixing engineers” with experience on large consoles know that this is how you do things :slight_smile: (there’s actually very little that “all mixing engineers” know because they have such different backgrounds, workflows and studio setups).

It’s OK. It just takes some getting used to.

To put things a different way: “groups” are mostly for editing, vcas are mostly for mixing. However, they overlap a little (more so groups with vcas rather than the other way around)

I have asked this question before. There’s no such function in Ardour or Mixbus.

Why I need to build a vca if I can just use a short cut or key command to solve this? If they want their product to be popular and competitive, they need to respect to the simple default functions which all other DAWs have agreed on, rather than giving out all those unpractical alternatives. Including that I have to build a vca in order to make automation changes for a group of tracks. Those are all making troubles for users.

As I’ve indicated above, we split what you are thinking as “groups” into “groups” and “vcas”. VCAs can be arbitrarily overlapped, nested and stacked.

Yeah, but that VCA works just as well, at least for what I need. Maybe it’s not worth fixing something that isn’t broken.

Other DAWs don’t make users have to think or do like this.

All those poor people that paid tens of thousands of dollars for their large scale mixing consoles. Just think of the horrors they face! And all for no reason when they could have just added groups LIKE EVERY OTHER DAW!

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Yes. It works. But would cost more time. Efficiency is a part that can make it a better software. Improving doesn’t have to be based on broken things.

The sort of “grouping” you think works better only works better for certain scenarios. For example: if the operations you carry out on the groups only consider of on/off settings (e.g. mute/solo/rec-enable etc), then straightforward grouping is easier and probably more appropriate.

But the moment you want to do fader control, it all starts to break down, which is where VCAs come in.

There’s a reason why the high end consoles use VCAs and not the sort of groups you’re thinking of. It’s because the people who use them tend to find themselves doing things where this model makes sense more often.