To Export or to "Print"?

For the past however many years of dealing with Cubase 5 and now I have Cubase Elements 8, I have always exported my tracks (Real Time Export).
In studying mixing I have noticed most mixers will print their mix.
What are advantages and disadvantages to each?

Not sure I understand what you are asking? ‘Print’ is just a synonym for ‘Export’ in my experience.

I have been considering doing something that may relate to this.

So what I’m thinking of doing is finishing a mix, rendering it, then playing it back and recording it straight from my soundcard back into the box again. So would be digital to analogue to digital again.

My reasoning is to introduce fluctuations into the framework of bits to give the mix a more live feel.

Probably a load of bollocks though

Printing comes from a term used in the analogue tape days. > to print to tape.

Many people in the recording industry today still talks about “to print” even without working with any “tape” anymore.

Export, Realtime export, Bounce , Render, Print, Rendering, Consolidate ,Render in place are all more or less broadly speaking the same thing or has the same meaning.

In a weird way you are on the right track…one can color a mix or make it warmer with say analogue distortion.

But you got it a bit wrong to talk about fluctuations in bits.

There is a huge difference between analogue and digital “audio”.

I recommend you start with a modern introduction or beginner book on audio recording to get you going.

Once you grasp the 2 concepts you can start experimenting with say “plug-inns” to simulate tape.

Or if you have a ton of cash printing everything to real audio tapes where the effect comes from will change the “color” in some ways yes…but you still have a long way to go if you want to do this.

You will also read about concepts like “summing”…but again start with the basics first.

Welcome to the wonderful world of audio…it’s a lifelong fantastic journey…and don’t despair > we all started out knowing nothing.

Enjoy and good luck !!!


I really did not wish to get in to this conversation. I misunderstood.

Best to you all! :slight_smile:

Running the audio out to analog and back in, only accomplished an additional DA to AD convention, and makes no sense unless you got some nice analog gear in between.

LOL thought I might have been talking some ish. What i would love would be an adat and mixer to get out of the box once and for all. How much $$$ we talkin?

In my projects, I’ll usually create a mix bus that all audio/ midi instruments/ other buses will be routed to instead of hitting the default Stereo Out bus that goes to my main out. If I wanted “print” the final track before exporting it to a folder on my HDD for delivery, I’ll route my mix bus to a new stereo audio track, and press record on that track. This gives me the full stereo bounce of my track in the current project, and I can export that via the Audio Mixdown window. Simply doing a bounce of the projects stereo output bus via the Audio Mixdown window, and selecting “import to new track” (or something like that) will achieve the same outcome, which is why I really only use this print method in Pro Tools. Even then, it’s really just a visual thing for me, I like seeing the fully printed track in the session before I export it so I can name the file. It also allows me to double check that the current mixed version of the piece I’m working on (i.e. Track 3 mix2) matches up with the project I have open.

So printing generally refers to actually recording the track from the final mix bus to a new audio track in the same project, whereas exporting refers to bouncing a stereo audio file to the hard drive and not necessarily having it visible on an audio track in the current project.

Can you pull a second mortgage on a 2.5 million dollar home? LOL

Seriously, it is a heavy expense to ‘get out of the box’ completely with better quality than in. I am curious why you wish to go there when most are moving towards it. Don’t get me wrong, there is a level of badassery that only comes from high dollar studios and their gear. But to get to that level will require a whole lot more than a question of ‘how much $$’. ‘How much time would it take to know what to purchase and learn how to use it’, would be the question you should ask here.

Just sayin. Ok now I’m out.

Best to you!

haha oh well. i guess just the thought of basically having a soundcard for every track just sound like audio heaven to me :smiley:

aw well, for now…

when you see sound engineer print a mix it means 100% they have the channels that goes in anolog summing or in every case they use a chain with different ad/da (who cost like all your equipment or more) or like someone told they use a anolog tape…whatever if you do all in one sound card do that have not sense at all , cause if you use same ad/da of the same sound card the only thing that you can get is a little degrade of sound…in that case the only thing that you can do is a simple export