Pro Tools 6.9
is now available from Digidesign. As Apple focuses on integration with
Final Cut Pro, Avid/Digidesign are counting on the loyalty of studios
and video houses to the Avid system; 6.9's major new features
have to do with Avid's high-end video products. If you don't have an
Avid or ICON D-Command control surface, there's really not much significant in this upgrade (the new EQ III plug-in was already available for download).

Of course, using CDM's patented Version Prediction System (VPS),
we've analyzed information for Digidesign PR, weather conditions over
the Atlantic Conveyer, solar activity, star alignment, and our Upgrade
Predicting Pigeon Patricia to come to this conclusion: Pro Tools 7 is now .1 away! If we don't see Pro Tools 6.91 first, that is. (What, you're not impressed by my reporting here?)

Back to a serious look at this, CDM readers have proved
pretty split on Pro Tools. Some of you can't stand it, some of you
can't live without it, but the good news is, either way you seem happy
with your choice and you're getting your work done. At least it's
becoming clear there is a choice — and choice is always good. Even in
post-production, I've talked to people using MOTU Digital Performer,
Steinberg Nuendo, and Apple Logic. Acclaimed film editor / sound
designer (and Final Cut user) Walter Murch seems really excited about Apple's new Soundtrack Pro. (Did Apple solicit input from Murch?)

And that, of course, is the point. If Pro Tools isn't the "only choice"
in production, it means there's still room for innovation in future
versions of Pro Tools (version 7?) and its competitors (Pro Tools has
nothing like Soundtrack's new Action Layers or UI). Competition between
native DAWs has led to feature-laden software like the current
generation of Logic, Cubase, SONAR, and DP, plus apps we never dreamed
we'd see like Live. It's great that post-production will be
competitive, too. Bottom line: Pro Tools is going to remain the industry leader — but a good fight could be just what this market needs.