For some time, the move has seemed inevitable – even more so as the rumor mill started echoing with suggestions that a native release was coming. But now, it’s happened: Pro Tools HD will now run without HD DSP hardware. And that’s not all — you can also use the same hardware with your existing DAW of choice, for users of software like Cubase and Logic.

There’s a price tag attached, though. This remains what for many would be a high-end solution. At US$3495 retail and up, it’s not competition for buying a basic interface card and Cubase. Think, instead, a more affordable and flexible way to equip studio rigs, and some potentially serious competition for vendors like Apogee, especially since you can use any DAW you want.

Just to say that again: Avid is making a version of Pro Tools HD that runs on the CPU and supports any DAW on Windows 7 or Mac OS X Snow Leopard and higher.

The AIR (Avid) user blog has some terrific analysis on the announcement even before it became public, comparing leaked price info for Native to an Apogee rig. If you haven’t been reading the AIR blog, they’ve hardly been shills for Avid; they’ve savaged some of the company’s decisions. And they’re actually pretty positive here. (Spoiler: Avid winds up being cheaper than Apogee by a few hundred bucks in their calculus.)
Is An Avid Pro Tools HD Native Core System Expensive?

What you get for that investment, though, is something worth discussing. It also reveals what’s necessary to get real, low-latency audio operation, which is relevant even if you aren’t in the market for Pro Tools|HD Native. CDM gets some insight into that from the developers.

First, Pro Tools|HD Native at a glance. Bundles:

Native core: $3495 buys you the necessary PCIe native card plus Pro Tools HD 8.5 software. The card comes with two Digilink mini ports on it.

Native core + OMNI Add an HD OMNI interface to the above. Total: US$5995.

Native core + HD I/O 8x8x8 Get a full 8x8x8 HD I/O interface. Total cost: US$6995.

Native core + HD I/O 16×16 analog US$7995.

Availability: November 4.

So, why bother with “HD Native” when there are versions like LE? The difference is that some of the more serious studio features remain:

  • Surround, VCA mixing
  • Destructive/track punch, advanced automation
  • Solo Bus AFL/PFL, track-based input monitoring
  • Sync HD support
  • 9-pin Machine Control
  • Venue support. (Yeah, that’s pretty huge, since Venue rigs don’t necessarily need all the TDM stuff.

This is what makes it all work: an I/O card for a PCI slot on your Mac or PC desktop.

This isn’t a TDM solution, though, so you don’t get TDM plug-in support, which for many is one of the big draws of Pro Tools. That includes the recently-announced HEAT, an analog-modeling sonic sweetener based on the qualities of tape. (There’s more to say about HEAT; I just got off the phone with its talented designer Dave Hill, so expect the results of that interview soon.)

It is a significant “mid-range” studio solution, and will likely fill a big need for Pro Tools customers. Avid told CDM in a briefing yesterday that they’ve gotten enormous demand for just such a solution. Just doing a discounted upgrade to HD got a big response, and users have wanted something between LE and the TDM-based HD for project or secondary studios. It also seems to me that it demonstrates Avid is willing to change, which could have greater implications down the road.

What you get is, says Avid, not a replacement for their DSP solutions, but otherwise unrestricted in sync, I/O, and functionality. It has the mixing and I/O LE lacks, and it even supports legacy “blue” HD converters (192, etc.), making it a likely candidate for upgrading studio setups that didn’t make the leap to 8.5 software.

If you don’t want to use Pro Tools as your DAW, you get 64 channels of I/O with any Core Audio (Mac) or ASIO (PC) system. Avid says they’ve tested extensively with Logic and Nuendo; Digital Performer, SONAR, and others should work, too.

And, notably, it’s a native system with extraordinarily low latency. Pro Tools|HD does .44 ms (at 96k and a 64 sample — yes, sixty-four total – buffer). But HD Native does a very respectable 1.6 ms; less than half that if you choose direct monitoring while recording, which you can do with simple stereo monitoring or even 7.1 surround setups. That’s 1.6 ms through the native setup, through PCI, and through the kernel and operating system. We’ve heard those kinds of theoretical numbers, but it’s a big deal to get it consistently on a computer system with a single, stable setup.

A closer look at the native card. Mmmm… heat sink.

The Latency Story

I was curious to hear more about how Pro Tools|HD Native achieves those low latencies. The answer says something about the direction of Pro Tools, but also the potential of native computers for this sort of processing in general, regardless of the tool you use. (And that’s the sort of information we like.)

Bobby Lombardi, head of Pro Tools Product Management, explains to CDM:

The magic answer to all this is the Core Audio/ASIO “safety buffer” which is an additional layer of latency used by third party IO manufacturers (HW) manufacturers who provide Core Audio drivers for their HW. We also use a safety buffer for all of our hardware (including LE and M-Audio) that have Core Audio and ASIO drivers.

A safety buffer can have a very wide range of values. PCIe based hardware IO is the best case where manufacturers could theoretically get down to a 9 sample buffer, and go as high as several hundred samples for USB devices.

The key for a high-performance, low-latency system is PCIe-based IO and quality low-latency converters. This is the main reason why a PCI-based Pro Tools HD Native system combined with an HD IO has such exceptional latency.

The story gets even better at 96kHz sample rates where most converter latencies where the host CPU latency halves itself, and many high-end converters are capable of a low-latency converter mode without sacrificing quality. Our new HD IO and OMNI IO have such converters and perform in a low-latency performance mode when used at 88.2 and higher sample rates.

So to recap. The best possible latency story for Pro Tools HD Native using AD/DA converters is:

Pro Tools HD Native
Pro Tools HD Software @ 96kHz, 64 sample playback buffer
HD IO or HD OMNI interfaces

If anyone wants to get deeper into these issues with Avid (or anyone else), let me know; I’m game.

Don’t Write Off TDM Yet

Worth saying: this is probably good news for the future of DSP-based, TDM Pro Tools systems, not bad. The business advantage for Avid is, they sell more hardware and software, and keep more people on their platform. (I don’t think they can be faulted for that.)

But if you’re wondering, why bother with the pricier TDM systems at all, the story there doesn’t really change. As Avid puts it, TDM’s advantages don’t suffer when your CPU becomes more powerful. That just means you can use all the horsepower of the CPU and all the additional DSP processing of the HD TDM iron. Some of their customers are also using pretty extreme use cases, like recording 500 channels a time of a symphony orchestra. (I got an angry note regarding Logic Pro after writing a review of Apple’s DAW for Macworld where someone complained that Logic was choking over just sort a setup. Naturally, as a home producer, I had neither tested – nor could really conceive – what that setup looked like.)

There’s also time. Developing highly-optimized TDM plug-ins in Assembler is a different game from writing RTAS (or VST, or AU, etc.) plug-ins in C, and not everyone will port from one to the other.

What’s interesting to me, though, is that some of these issues transcend usage scenarios, budget, and the like. I don’t doubt that every musician would love 1.5 ms latency. And those fundamental architectural issues I believe will continue to be relevant for the entire musical community – whether their tools count as particularly “Pro” or not.

  • Great article Peter. I think it's pretty funny to note the timing of this release; several months after a cracked "native" non-TDM version of HD was leaked to torrent websites.

  • griotspeak

    Expresscard support…planned? considered? inquiring minds would like to know!

  • Avid has been pushing the fact that you can run their gear with other software 'now'.

    Has this not been the case with Digidesign for years?

    I know I've never had any trouble running any Digi interface (LE or HD)
    with ANY software I've tried…

  • @Todd: Core Audio / ASIO support is available for those interfaces, yes. But again, nothing in the mid-range like this.

  • Bendish

    This is such non news (no fault of cdm naturally)….

    Its about as exciting as 'Boom', their 'awesome' drum vst.


  • Bendish

    thats rtas instrument and not vst of course

  • I always throught that protools should go full native and support all audio interfaces. They could then subsidize their software with DSPs for those who need it. I envision more of a UAD type solution for Avid. I hope this is just the first step in a master plan…


  • Dave Finkelstein

    I don't really understand the draw of this. First, you could have gotten a TDM HD system with an old mbox trade in for 5 grand less than a year ago so the price of the hd native is still way too high. I don't understand why someone would pay that much just to get ADC. The latency is also sort of a non issue. In my system, I have the M audio profire 2626 running m powered with the Eleven Rack patched through it for zero latency tracking. I can simply mute the track recording and hear my guitar with no latency, and I can do the same for anything I am recording while playing pack previous recorded tracks. Why would I upgrade to a native solution that will have some sort of latency? Can anyone shed light on any reason why someone with my setup would want to upgrade to HD native?

  • Dave Finkelstein

    Oh yeah, forgot to mention I have the MPTK which allows me 64 mono OR stereo tracks.

  • ProTools Free 98 for me!

  • heinrichz

    Boring software for boring productions..

  • strunkdts


  • Polite

    That is pretty attractive latency. What are the other top contenders for low latency audio? I'm currently using a mackie firewire mixer, but I'm thinking of moving to a dedicated rack interface because the latency on the mackie is pretty bad.

    Are there any interfaces that play well with other asio drivers on a windows system without using asio4all?

  • Microwave Prince

    they are milking cow till death…..

  • Martin

    In terms of AVID's "lock 'em in & milk 'em" marketing strategy of PT this IS a non-story.

    Up till now if you wanted to run other DAWs on PT-Digi-AVID hardware, you could. No change there.
    If you wanted to run PT software on non AVID hardware you couldn't … unless you used a (very cracked) cracked version or, as Regend mentions, stayed in the nineties using the only official non locked-to-hardware (but crippled in other ways) version of PT. So no change there either.

    So this new product line probably won't change much for those of us who are really quite happy that we are not obliged to buy an Ableton audio interface to use while we are running Live, plus a Cycling74 audio interface to run Max etc etc etc

    Historically, Digi / AVIDs non-TDM hardware (including Digi 001, 002, 003 etc the Mboxs, and all the sruff that preceded it) has been really grossly overpriced compared to other stuff out there, and the only reason anyone bought it was because they were forced to do so if they wanted to run PT. The TDM stuff was, and is, VERY expensive, but because of the closed nature of TDM it is harder to directly compare its price to other stuff, tnough I don't know of too many people, even amongst the biggest TDM advocates out there, who would seriously defend its price point.

    That is just what AVID does, it hooks you on its software and gouges you mercilessly with its hardware and absurdly priced software add-ons ( are they still charging more than the price of some DAWs just to add "mp3 support" to PT ???!!!). Nothing new here then.

    So this new hardware will sell in large numbers to people who just have to have PT software and want hardware a bit better than AVID's overpriced entry level stuff but for the rest of the market it will have to go up against the Apogees, the Orpheii etc on terms of sound quality, latency, features etc and it seems to me that it is there that we will see if there really is a stategy revolution at AVID or just more rope&milk, hook&gouge …

    I mean, I know a few people who bought a TDM system primarily to run Logic back in the days when Native systems were not up to it, but this IS a native system, just a very, very expensive one … And I know of precisely zero people who bought a Digi 00x unless they were running PT …

  • Carl

    PRO TOOLS HD NATIVE is not compatible with HEAT. Now, Im a Pro tools HD 3 owner/user and I always get errors of not enough space etc… running a new mac pro with 16 gigs of ram. So this solution was a dream come true for me, but now things like HEAT doesn't work???

    That makes no sense. And it is an intermediate solution. NOt a pro level studio solution.

    I guess Ill stick to HD3 for now.

  • morgan

    I Have been a Pro Tools TDM/HD2 User for 8+ years, (Only by force since I dove into purchasing one because "everyone else used it" and have consistently had issues with it, and watched them release inadequate gear every since. Although I think Pro Tools is some of the best Editing and mixing software available, It's by no means stable. It's hard for me to trust them at this point. I had to purchase 3rd party converters and clocks due to the fact that theirs simply did not sound as good in shootouts. To this Day Pro Tools 8 Software has many issues running quite a few 3rd party POPULAR Plug ins while tech support is still "charging per question" for people who paid 6K+ for their rig….. I'm sorry but , I just cannot care about anything from them at this point. Digi… I'm moving on…

  • mar

    Why the lengthy comment about
    a product you obviously have
    no use for?
    How could you judge if its worth
    the money?

  • @mar: That's fascinating, huh?

    Morgan's criticism, of course, is more significant; if you can't rely on the stability of the solution, that's clearly a problem.

  • @mar: Faulty argument. All of us routinely judge the worth of products (especially expensive ones) without buying or using them.

    I'm still reeling over the price. It's hard for me to understand why anyone would pay $3,500 for a DAW program when they could buy Logic, Cubase, or even Live for so much less. To me, it's not about the nth degree of stereo imaging or a .1dB frequency response change coming from a tape emulator — it's about the music!

    If the music is happening, you don't need Pro Tools. If the music isn't happening, buying Pro Tools won't help.

  • mar

    @Jim Alkin
    I just don't like “lock ‘em in & milk ‘em” and "really grossly overpriced"
    and don't think it's fair and founded judgement.

    I bought Pro Tools+mbox for less than the price of cubase alone,
    still I don't call Cubase "grossly overpriced".
    Nuendo costs three times as much, etc.

    "If the music is happening, you don’t need Pro Tools"
    Well you might need it, if the music is happening and you
    are supposed to record 50 tracks of it without hiccups.

    The Point is:
    There are Options – different products for different needs.

  • spinner

    @JIm – I"m going to come over sounding like a twat here but there is now way around it, sorry.
    PTHD has tools and a workflow for mixing and tracking high demanding session in a commercial environment that the others simply don't have.
    I have worked for many years with most of the contenders on this playing field and it is still a fact.
    Yes I know Logic, Cubase et al are a lot cheaper and of course no software will make your music any better.
    If you have no need for the features of HD then you shouldn't buy it, but then I don't really understand the need on commenting on this story..?

    This is interesting although the entry price is too high. A grand less and this will most likely find its way into my studio.
    It is a shame on TDM but being able to use a 12 core Mac and being unrestricted by onboard HD dsp will mean a lot of future proofing.
    Bring on 64 bit and this'll be fun.

    However I think lots, including myself, will wait to see what Light Peak will mean for the audio industry before any major upgrades.

  • I'm not working in a demanding commercial environment. Quite possibly Pro Tools has features that no other program has that will facilitate that type of session. I guess I'd be curious to know exactly what those features might be … and also, will those features be available in a native app that doesn't have a fancy Digi (oops — Avid) hardware audio interface and won't run TDM plug-ins?

  • phase90

    As for being able to work in other DAWs… For the last 3+ yrs, I've been running a Mac Pro/PT HD rig via Lynx Aurora 8 with the LT-HD card.

    If not working in PT, I use Cubase or Logic through the same I/O with Coreaudio. Lynx Aurora allows me the freedom to work with whatever DAW I choose and has for a while.

  • caze

    i'm a protools user, but is it not odd that after all these years there's not a single click solution for "bounce in place" or "freeze" that "prints" the present audio and it's effects and thus frees the CPU? I mean, i know i can bounce out and back in and solo stuff and bus stuff..but if i wanted to change it, there's a real pile to clean up. but doesn't this purposeful misuse of hardware resources amount to a manufactured need for a TDM DSP system?

  • strunkdts


  • Avid Software will never touch my hard drive again. It's just to fiddly on a PC (mostly due to their copy protection). And I like hardware that works with all applications.

    I switched to Reaper as my main DAW and MOTU I/O for audio and MIDI. Not looking back. I also own Acid, Sonar, Audacity and others if I want.

  • Martin

    @ Mar et al
    You seem to have misread my post.
    Can you explain exactly why I have no right to comment on this ?
    I have been using DIgidesign software and hardware since before Pro Tools even existed. I bought the first Sound Tools system they ever made. Then Audiomedia 1, Audiomedia 2, Audiomedia 3, Digi 001, Digi 002, MBox 1, even the so called MBox Micro. I have used TDM systems in commercial and project studios many, many times.I still use Pro Tools software regularly. It used to be my principal DAW. Now it is just one of several I use.

    My point is not that PT software is crap. It isn't. It is IMHO still probably the best software for certain applications. For most, though not all, of what I do, I now prefer other options, but that doesn't stop me having over twenty years of experience with the Digi universe … You say "how could you judge if its worth the money" … I wouldn't think of judging what is worth what money for someone else. Some people pay thousands of dollars extra for a certain coulour of car, and presumably it is worth it for them.
    However I, like everyone else, can compare features, specs and sound quality of comparable interfaces, whether you like it or not !
    I don't 'judge' the new thing 'cos I haven't heard it, but I have heard, and used, most of the rest of Digi's stuff, and, IMHO it has been, for the most part, considerably overpriced and the fact that it sells in bucketloads is overwhelmingly because of the lock-in with the PT software. If you look on the forums, including AVID's own one, you will find that this view is far from uncommon.

    But this is really all secondary, my main point is really quite simple : to run Live, Logic & Max/MSP I can buy precisely the interface that best suits my needs from any manufacturer I choose. If I also want to run non-cracked Pro
    Tools, I have to additionally buy a Digidesign box that I don't need. This isn't an opinion, it is a fact.
    This annoys me. It annoys many people. It might not annoy you, but that doesn't give you the right to tell me I can't say so. AVID are of course free to market their stuff however they choose, and I am free to criticise what I don't
    like about their marketing strategy. And there is much to dislike.

  • J

    Yes according to some people you can't really criticize a product because then it's simply "not for you". Conversely, according to others you can't praise something because then you are biased, a "fanboy." With those two restrictions in mind the only allowed opinion would be an "artificially balanced" review – the kind of stuff that doesn't really tell you anything that can't be found in the product specs. In other words: gear magazine reviews. If something's wrong with the product the mag informs the company and postpones the review. This is supposed to be fair, but is it fair to the customer who doesn't get warned for flawed products? We need the internet to get serious reviews! Both fanboys and critics should be free to explain their positions, in a rational debate. Trying to detonate valid criticism from guys like Martin is a sign of weakness and doesn't make Avid more believable. All the paid brand ambassadors in the world can't help there, they only make it worse.

  • mar

    Now you make your point –
    before you were just bad-mouthing.
    Where did I say you had no right?

    I don't think it's marketing strategy – they just don't know
    how to make PT work with any given interface.
    Why would you criticise PT when all the few things it does a little
    better than cubase are probably due to the fact they don't have
    to worry about the hardware?

    Since Cubase has its flaws too, it's good to have different software
    with maybe more, but different flaws.

    Haven't been to Logic Forums recently – they're probably they
    happiest people in the World…

  • Martin

    No, I am saying precisely the same thing in both posts.

    You say : "I don’t think it’s marketing strategy – they just don’t know
    how to make PT work with any given interface."
    Honestly. I really don't mean to be insulting here but I read this three times and i'm still not sure if you are being sarcastic or not.
    If you are, then i'm not sure what point you are trying to make.
    If you are not, then either you are just trolling (in which case sorry for contributing to feeding you) or you are actually serious, and in that case then, sorry, but you just don't know what you are talking about.
    No hard feelings.

  • Tony

    The HD Native card looks more like a Symphony 64 type of card to me.

    Maybe they'll offer it without the Protools software one day, and really become a hardware driven company.

    This certainly sounds a little ridiculous, but we do have a native Protools HD now, which still seems a little strange.

  • mar

    You just insult other people with broad assumptions
    like “lock ‘em in & milk ‘em”, “really grossly overpriced”
    and "you just don’t know what you are talking about"
    without giving any context or proof.

  • rover

    You know, I'm primarily a Logic users but there's a good chance I'll end up getting one of these HD/Native boxes – simply to stay connected to Pro Tools clients – but I have to say digidesign/AVID are and have always been about “lock ‘em in & milk ‘em” and the gear is “really grossly overpriced”.

  • I understand the frustration with Avid and Pro Tools. On the other hand — unless you're in the position of needing compatibility with clients, and there I guess we'll see how well Avid lives up to their recent "openness" promises — you have choices.

    1. I don't think this should be considered "LE plus." It's more like a system to complement existing HD systems without exclusively requiring DSP hardware.
    2. For its target market, it isn't actually outrageous; see the Apogee link. That target market is small, of course, and probably applies to almost no one reading this site; I appreciate that.
    3. I don't see "Native" as a means of attracting new people to the platform. I think it's a solution for existing users. So, I certainly hear Jim's argument – and I'm not in the market for Native myself. But I don't think it's a way to "lock in" new users.

  • Lee Faulkner

    The song remains the same…

    Give Avid / Digi $6 K today and then start saving for another $3K in 3 years or worse… when it suddenly becomes incompatible at some level with something.

    For a commercial studio ( and in fairness that's their market) this investment is supportable (and tax deductible) but for semi-pro's, education, serious amateurs, non profits, poor musicians it remains (IMHO) a scam. Or at least a bad choice…

    Theres many (better?) choices out there which will leave you some $$ for good mics, a premium preamp and some nice speakers. That's what really matters.

    Though a reliable 1.6ms is impressive for software instruments. Thank god my playing is so sloppy! :-)))


  • Part of the reason I brought up the latency issue is, assuming you don't have processing that's adding larger buffers, that is theoretically possible. Had seen some discussion of that on the SONAR side, though then, again, it was PCI-based cards. I'd love to see more hard numbers on this.

    It definitely isn't easy to get those kinds of latencies, not remotely. Any number of things can go wrong.

  • Martin

    @Peter : since i'm the one who first made the 'lock in' comment, let me just say that I was referring to the whole ' PT is locked into Digi hardware ' thing. This new system is no different to any other Digi system in that respect. It IS new and different in that it is the first non-entry level Digi system that is native, but it is the same old thing with regard to it's open-ness – or lack thereof.

    @Mar : once again, I really don't mean to be insulting, but seriously, if you _really_ think that the reason non-TDM Pro Tools only works with Digi hardware is because Digi / AVID hasn't discovered how to make it work with Core Audio etc yet, then, yes, i'm sorry but it is clear that you don't know what you are talking about. If you – really – believe that the reason that every two bit shareware program will work with any interface out there but PT won't is because "they just don't know how" then …well, let's just say that you are mistaken.

  • mar

    @Martin Hanft
    If you've been using digidesign for 20 years now
    they must be doing something right.
    Maybe that's got something to do with tight control
    over their own hardware?
    They are even quite particular about operating systems and
    mainboards, controllers etc. they support (another outrage!)
    Cubase otoh does _not_ work flawlessly with any given
    hardware. Having to deal with those issues eats
    ressources and doesn't help reliability.

    Every now and then new software, built from scratch with the latest
    tools, turns up – faster, 64 Bit etc.
    Old ships like Pro Tools, Final Cut etc. don't move so fast,
    (old code, they have to tend to their userbase, etc).
    So before they modify Pro Tools, lay off hardware engineering staff
    and hire call center support staff, they'd probably be better off
    scrapping the whole digidesign thing, start from scratch and do
    something like "reaper".

  • mar

    Should have been @Martin
    (Auto insert trouble)

  • HEXnibble

    @Morgan: "I Have been a Pro Tools TDM/HD2 User for 8+ years, (Only by force since I dove into purchasing one because “everyone else used it”"
    That's obviously not "by force" but that is the type of mentality that misleads people into thinking that they have to use Pro Tools because it was once considered an "industry standard".

    Pro Tools is a dinosaur that cannot die off any faster.

  • What the!!

    The ONLY reason to buy pro tools is to have a hardware solution and near zero latency with reverbs, eq, echos, etc with the tdm plugs in real time, the way an analog mixing board is. I have multiple gigastudios, all connected digitally to motu boxes in a mix computer running cuemix, then running into more motu boxes on my dp computer. I may be missing something, but why do I need a protools interface and a hd native card that will cost around 8 grand to route all digital signals, when the motu 2408 mk111 does it for a grand (In addition, I have 3 banks of 8 adat light pipe i/o with the 2408, my guess is the same configuration will cost around 10 grand with the protools native card. Again, if there is some advantage in the way protools handles digital signal routing, please explain explain it to me, because it all seems like a huge waste of money to me. If you’re going to go protools, just bite the bullet and get the full blown dsp system

  • Digital Joe

    Wow! Avid you have really shot yourself in the foot this time! Who was the genius behind this move? If it wasn't for all of your LE users, you would have never been as big of company as you've become. All these upgrades and hardware changes just make me think it's all a hustle! I guess this Native HD system is an AudioMedia card on steroids with a hefty price tag. For this kind of money I get more with another system. People stop giving these crooks your money! Remember CD's are still end up at 44.1khz and the MP3 generation doesn't care about audio quality!

  • @Digital Joe
    Sorry about answering after almost 2 years, now things are changed a little bit with Pro Tools 9, but i'd like to answer to you:

    You wrote: 
    "Remember CD’s are still end up at 44.1khz and the MP3 generation doesn’t care about audio quality!"

    This is erroneous as never… Surely an untrained ear cannot distinguish a 192k-recorder audio file from a 48k-one, but the thumbs-up rule is to record at a quality highest as possibile, and *then* to convert for final media targeting. 

    And further, there is not only mp3 and internet… there are radio, tv, hd-tv and so on.

    So you didn't make your point with this, my friend.