NAMM 2015: Avid Everywhere for Audio Launch

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Editor’s Note: Pro Tools 12 was released on Monday, March 23, 2015.


It’s a new year; NAMM is here and that means it’s time to share some exciting news. “What’s new at Avid? What’s happening with Pro Tools?”—those are the questions ringing through the halls of the Anaheim Convention Center and I’m quite sure on the Internet forums.  So let’s try to distill down the key messages and announcements from the show for you …

Pro Tools | First is a new, free version of Pro Tools that anyone can register and download to start creating some great tracks.

Pro Tools | First is a new, free version of Pro Tools that anyone can register and download to start creating some great tracks. It has 16 mono or stereo audio tracks, 16 Instrument Tracks, 16 MIDI tracks and much more. It’s a fully functional version that allows users to work on up to three projects and it has all of the same main recording and editing features as industry-standard Pro Tools. Pro Tools | First is a streamlined yet feature-rich version of Pro Tools that makes it easy for those new to music creation and recording to get started. Plus, it also provides more sophisticated tools that musicians using other software can try out to see what Pro Tools can do and to create a complete mix. Pro Tools | First provides an amazing opportunity for artists and aspiring pros to get started using the same tools used by the leaders in the pro audio industry.

Pro Tools 12 is here! It offers easier and more flexible ways of getting your hands on the best tools in the industry and staying on the cutting edge of music and sound creation with flexible licensing options. These new flexible licensing options enable you to create with a low-cost subscription, own it outright, or get started with Pro Tools | First, (as we mentioned above) a free version of the industry standard. The choice is yours.

This release marks a fundamental change in the way Avid will deliver new feature updates—in smaller but faster release dates instead of the traditional 18-month wait between big updates. For new users, it’s never been more affordable to use the latest version of Pro Tools—starting at under $25 a month for an annual subscription. For existing Pro Tools (standard) users, the choice is theirs now on what makes sense for their upgrade schedule, whether to stay on an annual perpetual license or a new monthly subscription license.  Plus, all Pro Tools 12 licenses come with a support plan which, in addition to providing software updates/upgrades, offers unlimited web support and either one support phone call per month for Pro Tools or unlimited calls for Pro Tools | HD, for the duration of the plan. (Learn more by reading our Frequently Asked Questions guide.)

Avid Cloud Collaboration, along with the Avid Marketplace and the Avid Artist Community are coming! Create. Collaborate. Be heard!

Pro Tools 12 users will be able to sign up for a chance to join the Early Access Program and start using Pro Tools with cloud collaboration functionality. I talked about how excited I was for my own musical collaborations and the need for this functionality in my last blog as a lead-in to NAMM. There are  a ton of ground breaking things involved with the upcoming cloud collaboration features in Pro Tools, allowing you to more easily find and collaborate with the best talent anywhere on the globe. Furthermore, you’ll have better metadata tracking, file management and archival features, as well.

The Avid Marketplace has three key components that will impact, empower and connect all sound related artists:

Avid App Store – Get ultra-fast access to creative tools (like plug-ins or VI’s) so you can deliver your best sounding work—directly from within Pro Tools. Buy or rent plug-ins when you need them without a time consuming process.

Artist Community – Setup your profile, find and connect with artists, musicians, engineers, and other media professionals to foster new collaborative and creative opportunities, and share your work.

Content Marketplace – Earn recognition and payment for your work by connecting with media professionals in music, film, television, and broadcast looking to license music and sound assets.

The new Eleven Effect Plug-In Bundle contains 17 hip and amazing sounding analog ‘stomp box’ modeled effects previously only available from the Eleven Rack. These include Distortion pedals, Chorus/Phaser pedals, EQ pedals, Reverb and Delay pedals as well as a Wah pedal. They will be available for all Pro Tools users as AAX Native, Audiosuite and DSP and are coming soon at an amazing price. Be sure to check these out —they are awesome and affordable.

We’ll be diving deeper on many of these topics in the coming months … It’s not so hard to believe that it’s the year 2015 when you look at how far music and sound creation has come. Here’s to some exciting creating, collaborating and being heard in 2015. Cheers and thanks for reading!

NAMM 2015

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Marketing manager for Avid Post Audio and Pro Mixing, I am also a veteran engineer/recordist/editor. I've worked on music scores for dozens of feature films, including Ice Age, Collateral, and The Spirit.