Strategies for sending/receiving files?

configuring files; mixdowns

Hello all. I'm new to this forum, and appreciate the opportunity to get instruction from those far more knowledgeable that I am. Thanks for the welcome, Administrator. (And thanks also for the birthday wishes, although I should mention that I went back and amended my profile. In fact, I was not actually born last week.)

Two musician friends and I want to collaborate on recordings, but we all live in different locales. We decided to attempt a “record-something-and-pass-it-along” scenario, - code-named “The AE Project” - and, after some research and discussion, n-Track was selected as the vehicle for this.
While we haven't made it to this point yet, I'm studying and trying to consider all options for the best, most practical or most user-friendly strategy for configuring files, types of files, and the best way to send/receive them. The success or failure of the project hinges on this aspect. I'm trolling for any thoughts or suggestions, and would be especially interested to hear from others with experience doing something similar.

FILE TYPES: OK, I understand the .sng file contains only the structure of the song. The audio data is kept separate in the .wav files. The packed song file (.sgw) saves all song data in one big file, and the User's Guide points to this file type as being “useful for transferring songs by email…” I imagine that some .sgw files could get pretty large. Are these sent as simple email attachments?

I also read that each time you load a .sgw file, n-Track will extract the tracks’ audio files and will let you save the song’s .sng file. (And that n-Track will always need the .sng and .wav files before you can do any work, record, playback, edit). Is this, then, a realistic strategy: to send packed song files, have each person's n-Track separate them, then add their overdubs, save to packed (.sgw) file, and send it on down the line? Will this be practical, or will it be too complicated and laborious, and make musicians have a tantrum and want to throw things?

MIXDOWNS: Should repeated ‘small' mixdowns be utilized to reduce file size? I'm imaging that the instrumental music backing tracks, (the stuff we're cuing from when we're adding our new ‘overdubs') might be regularly mixed down, to insert the resulting ‘small mixdown' into the song and then remove the individual tracks. Do I understand correctly that later, once the recording is finished, we would be able to reload those single tracks (provided they had not been deleted), so as to control and process them individually for final ‘big' mixdown?

Any and all clarifications, ideas, suggestions, and relevant details are welcome. Thanks!


actually I do it both ways.
I always like to have all the tracks in raw form until I get everything I need.
But if you have enough tracks that thing are bogging now you may want to consider doing some mix downs of several tracks. This does not necessarily remove the original tracks unless you check to have the program do that.this allows you to have a smaller load on the computer but you can always go back to the original tracks should you decide that you want to remix things. The way you send the tracks to a friend to add additional tracks is up to you. You can mix down to something like a WDM or PG 3 format and send just the complete recording and then the other person can create their own wave file with whatever program they happen to use. If everybody starts with from the beginning of the recording of just the track they creat without the mix down you sent. you can then bring those into in ntrack with the unmixed original recordings and everything should sync up. If it doesn’t sync up you can always drag the track until you manage to get things lined up the way you want. I’ve done this when somebody does not own ntrack and prefers using their own recording software.
If you’ve got somebody that’s working on your mix then you may want to send the S WG file so that they can expand all of the tracks. A little communication with your coworker will allow you to find the best let’s say the person wants the bass and drum tracks pulled up and maybe he doesn’t want to hear the other instruments very loudly at all you can do that in the mix down. If he prefers to do his own settings you’re going to have to send the compressed file of the separate tracks. Something that does take up more space and put a limit on using your normal email. Hope this helps.

Sorry if it’s been covered above. You might want to take a look into the “Enable .NET Features” in Prefs>Options. I have dabbled 3/4 years ago without much success (something to do with the dynamics of IP’s).

Thank you, Bax3, for taking the time give me this information; we will benefit from your experience. And thanks TonyR, for directing me. I will study all. Your contributions are highly valued, and I hope they will lead to something you can listen to from our AE project.