Editing gain before mixing. Soon – Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together… mass hysteria!

At the AES show in New York, Avid as expected updated their flagship Pro Tools DAW to version 10, and unveiled a next-generation version of their higher-end HD line. Since it’s Friday, and perhaps not the best day for processing loads of information about new DAWs, let’s see if we can’t boil down the major points.

Pro Tools 10

Clip Gain helps you to set gain levels before you get to the mixer.
More flexible use of files: mix formats, and in a departure for Pro Tools, record and master natively in 32-bit floating points
Better performance on slow disk drives
Low-latency recording and direct monitoring at last added to third-party interfaces
New Avid Channel Strip plugs (based on the former Euphonix)
SoundCloud export (a bit surprised to see Avid beat some of its rivals to this… though, of course, you probably already know how to uplaod)

There’s also EUCON controller support, projects that now have a 24-hour timeline, and enhanced responsiveness.

This is really a Pro Tools upgrade for Pro Tools users – no splashy features, necessarily, so much as stuff their loyal user base is likely to appreciate. But I know Pro Tools users have a pretty long wish list, so PT die-hards, let us know what you think of the update, especially as you begin using it.

Pro Tools HDX

HDX is basically HD super-sized – and that makes sense, as it keeps pace with advances in technology (and particularly the vastly-expanded native processing capabilities we’ve seen over the past decade).

You get five times the DSP power per card versus the previous HD Accel, more tracks, and the new floating-point architecture.

It’s big news that Pro Tools has finally gone to a 32-bit floating-point architecture … well, anyway, if you’re into numbers. I’ll be curious to know if people can tell the difference. Sounds like we need a very controlled double-blind test, and comparing Pro Tools to Pro Tools would be perfect for the job.

Obligatory promo video. Hyperbole/marketing glasses at the ready!

And here’s a look at that new channel strip. Mmmm… channel strippy.