Pro Tools 8 – Reviewed And Improved

Digidesign have announced that all flavours of Pro Tools 8 (HD, LE and M-Powered) are now shipping. This latest release brings a number of improvements over version 7.4 that may well be worth the upgrade…

The Essentials Of Pro Tools 8

The first thing you’ll notice about this latest incarnation of the venerable DAW is that it has been given a facelift – it’s a bit more cutesy and colourful, and certainly leaning in the direction of Logic.

But let’s cut to the meat of it. The most appealing feature upgrades for me are the increase in plug-in slots from five per channel to ten per channel, and the increase in ‘voices’ from 32 to 48 for LE and M-Powered.

I know that I can set up aux sends for common effect chains (this is actually a more sensible way of routing as it reduces CPU load), but sometimes I really just want to throw an effect unit onto a particular channel and get on with the task at hand. Finding that all the slots are occupied can disrupt the workflow somewhat.

Know The Score – Pro Tools 8 With Sibelius and MIDI

If you work with notation a lot, then you’ll be pleased to hear that PT8 has a new score editing facility, which is derived from Sibelius. In the Score Editing window you can manage your notation, placing and editing notes in real time – and you can add guitar chord tablature to your projects if you desire. Here’s an introduction to the Score Editor from Synthopia…

MIDI editing has received a much-needed overhaul in PT8, with the addition of a new MIDI editor window and a host of usability tweaks such as the MIDI smart tool. Velocities are now indicated by lighter or darker shaded bars (it’s about time Pro Tools caught up with that one).

New Voices Of Pro Tools 8

Other highlights of the new release include a new vocal comping facility and five new free virtual instruments – a grand piano, an organ, Xpand2, a drum machine and a monosynth. For more details on this and an early review, have a look at David Franz‘s site…or you can check out the Digidesign spiel.


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