Avid Pro Tools — Best of 2017

By in Audio Post, Music Creation, Pro Mixing

Throughout 2017, Avid has released multiple feature rich updates for Pro Tools that deliver solutions for both music creation and audio post production.  These regular updates range from delivering customer requested MIDI enhancements and improvements to collaboration, to creating new integrated Dolby Atmos workflows and mixing for Virtual Reality content.

As we develop new features and enhancements within Pro Tools, we believe in getting these solutions in the hands of our customers as soon as possible. The more workflow enhancements we release, the more productive you become, and it is our mission to continue with regular releases in the future.


Music Creation

MIDI Enhancements

One of the main objectives on the forefront for us in 2017 was listening to our community and bringing you highly demanded new MIDI features and workflows.

To start, we made your keyboard commands quicker and more intuitive than ever. With new Grid and Nudge sizing keystrokes, the ability to open and close the MIDI Editor with a simple key command, and note selection via arrow keys, you’ll be racking up more and more time to be productive. We’ve also changed the recording process for MIDI. While recording, there is now a red track indicator that populates in real time with MIDI notes as you play them. And when you stop you’re recording, the beginning and end of the clip will automatically snap-to-grid before and after the last note played. Beyond the recording process, we’ve made a few additions to help the creative process as well. Now, as you input MIDI information, you’ll see an indicator that tells you exactly what note or chord you are playing.

For much more on all of our MIDI improvements this year, check out the release notes for Pro Tools 12.8.2.


This year we also introduced Soundbase, an intelligent loop browser, as a way to influence music creativity. Looking for a quick beat to get your creative juices flowing? Simply browse the free 2GB library by clicking the tags that describe the genre, instrument, time signature or other descriptions you’re looking for. Soundbase also enables you to quickly and efficiently find the samples you are looking for by letting you custom-tag your favorite loops and samples.

We’ve also made some major updates to Soundbase to ensure your creativity is never disrupted. The new Keep Window on Top feature makes sure that the Soundbase window remains on top of Pro Tools when you drag and drop loops and samples into the timeline so you don’t have to click back and forth.

Cloud Collaboration Improvements

With so many improvements to Cloud Collaboration this year, working together on a global scale has never been easier. Are band members moving away? No problem; just have them download Pro Tools | First and they can start contributing to your latest Pro Tools or Pro Tools | HD project一for free. Want to collaborate, but no one in your group owns Pro Tools? That’s not a problem either. Have everyone download Pro Tools | First and make sure one person subscribes to the Artist Cloud Plan. This plan allows that user to invite up to 10 collaborators to the project.

With the launch of Pro Tools 12.8 this year, accounts now include 1GB of free cloud space and can accommodate up to 10 collaborators per project. Storage plans have also evolved with the addition of a lower cost plan.

You can upgrade your cloud plan through your My Avid account.


Post Production

2017 was a huge year for advancements in Post Production. As the industry heads towards new incredibly immersive audio experiences, Pro Tools has kept up stride-for-stride and continues to deliver crucial integrated workflows to empower mixers and engineers around the world.

Dolby Atmos®

Dolby Atmos® was a game changer when it was released a few years ago, and is currently the standard in immersive audio for all of the biggest blockbuster films. With this new technology came an entirely new set of rules. Mixers and engineers now had to take into consideration the area above moviegoers heads. With Pro Tools | HD 12.8, we made mixing media in Dolby Atmos® easier than ever. Working closely with Dolby, Pro Tools | HD now offers a completely integrated Atmos workflow with native 7.1.2 tracks, bussing and panning.



  • 1.2 Mix bus & Track Support
  • Object Panner
  • AAX Plug-in Support
  • Enhanced S6 Support
  • Advanced Dubber Synchronization
  • RMU connection
  • ADM BWAV Import

Mixing for Virtual Reality

As more and more immersive technology is created, advancements in audio are happening in more places than just theatres. Virtual reality may not replace the movie-going experience, but it is a medium of entertainment that editors and mixers need to be equipped to handle. And with Pro Tools | HD 12.8.2, we teamed up with the best to bring integrated Ambisonics workflows to our software. Now included with Pro Tools | HD is the Facebook 360 Spatial Workstation, which allows you to create dynamic and immersive spatial audio mixes without ever leaving Pro Tools.

Connecting Teams with NEXIS

In 2017, Avid brought professional audio teams closer together than ever with Avid NEXIS shared storage. With NEXIS, your team of mixers, editors, or producers can share projects on a centralized pool of media storage, turning work around faster by eliminating the time wasted moving files between different systems.


  • Pro Tools Multi-seat support for full Avid NEXIS Product line
  • 12 seats qualified, but more are possible
  • Streaming support for smaller projects
  • Faster disk cache loading for larger projects
  • 1GB, Dual 1GB and 10GB connections
  • High track counts, high edit density
  • Punch Performance Enhancements


The Avid Complete Plug-in Bundle

To enhance your work even more, this year we introduced the Avid Complete Plug-in Bundle. For just $49.99 for the entire year, or $4.99 a month, you get access to more than 75 plug-ins from Avid.*

What’s Included

  • Classic compressors
  • EQs
  • Groundbreaking virtual instruments
  • Studio-staple effects
  • Legendary stompboxes
  • Powerful reverbs
  • The world’s greatest guitar amps
  • And so much more…

 *Please note that Avid HEAT and Aphex Aural Exciter and Big Bottom Pro are not included in the Avid Complete Plug-in Bundle.


More Workflow Enhancements

The all-new batch rename window offers a powerful and flexible way to manipulate track and clip names. You might have just finished editing your guitar parts and now want to rename them with the guitarist’s name, for example. This can now be done in one simple operation.

Scroll to Track will also speed up your organizational workflow. It enables you to quickly find any track in your session. You might be working in a big session and quickly want to jump to the lead vocal just by typing in the track name.

In Pro Tools 12.8.1 we brought you new workflows with zplane to bring you their industry leading time expansion and compression algorithm, which is seamlessly integrated into the Pro Tools workspace.

You can get access to all of the latest features Pro Tools has to offer by heading to shop.avid.com or by renewing your upgrade plan or subscription through your My Avid account. This year we also upped our efforts to show appreciation to our loyal active and current customers. Active Pro Tools users can now download Tracktion’s virtual instrument “BioTek” and 350 free sound effects from the Pro Sound Effects | First Library. Upgrade today to take advantage of these powerful tools!

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From news production, sports production, audio editing and music composing, content creation and the applications that drive the industry are something I have used throughout my career. Inspired by powerful and emotive film scores and the behind the scenes orchestration–I now work as Solutions Marketing Specialist (Creative Artists) for Pro Tools at Avid, where I help deliver the very best software in the audio industry to the creators who inspired me from the start. My music creation started when I picked up a guitar in junior high, and continues today through writing cinematic compositions.