NEW YORK — At a press event and live Webcast last night, Avid introduced Version 10 of its Pro Tools digital audio workstation software. Pro Tools celebrate its 20th birthday this year and the company reflected on some of its recent achievements, including opening up to third-part I/O last year and its offering of a low-latency, affordable software-only system dubbed Pro Tools|HD Native.
The Version 10 release includes more than 50 new features, and one of the more notable enhancements is Clip Gain, which allows users to adjust levels in the edit window. The system also allows for realtime crossfades without the need to render or recalculate.
Also introduced with Pro Tools 10 is a brand new plug-in format — AAX (Avid Audio Extension) — which run on both hardware and software-only systems. The company says that 100 third-party developers have already committed to support for AAX, and many are at the AES show in New York City this weekend showing them off. For RTAS plug-in users, they will be happy to know that their plug-ins will run in Pro Tools 10.
Avid is providing the Channel Strip AAX plug-in with all new releases. Chanel Strip takes many of the features found in the Euphonix System 5 console and makes them available to Pro Tools users in a plug-in format. This includes a 4-band EQ, 2 band filters, and trim controls.
On the hardware side, Avid also announced Pro Tools|HDX, a new hardware device that provides more than 5x performance than the HD Accel release. The HDX is full 32-bit and supports up to 256 voices per card. A Mac tower can employ up to three cards.
For existing Pro Tools 7-9 users, sessions created with Version 10 can be opened in the older versions. Pro Tools 10 is also open to any third-party storage and whether a user is working with a software or hardware-based system, there will be no sound differences, though performance will differ.
Pro Tools 10 is available now with a starting price of $699. Avid is offering an upgrade path for $299. The Pro Tools|HDX hardware will ship by the end of the year and will be priced just under $10,000.