Today, Avid released the latest edition of their flagship digital audio workstation, Pro Tools, bringing an entirely new workflow to all Pro Tools users. Pro Tools | Sketch, is a non-linear clip-based creation tool coming to all versions of Pro Tools and has iPad support as well.
Along with this newly added feature, Avid has brought back Pro Tools perpetual licenses, allowing users to purchase a Pro Tools license once without paying for a subscription.
Let’s take a closer look at what Pro Tools 2023.9 offers.
Introducing Pro Tools | Sketch
Now available in all versions of Pro Tools (including the free Pro Tools Intro) is Sketch, the most significant workflow enhancement to Pro Tools we’ve seen in a long time. Sketch is both a new window in all versions of Pro Tools as well as a free iPad app – adding a non-linear, clip-based workflow to the world-class recording, editing, and mixing tools already found in Pro Tools.
Sketch unlocks users’ ability to experiment and play with musical ideas anywhere inspiration strikes, turning Pro Tools into a powerful yet portable tool. Musicians can start with non-linear, clip-based Sketches in which loops, MIDI, and recordings can be freely organized and played and then exported to be shared with friends or take ideas into the Pro Tools timeline for further editing and mixing.
With the newly added Sketch workflow, Avid has removed yet another barrier in the creative process, inviting users’ best ideas to happen without disrupting the pace of productivity.
Top Sketch Features
Sketch is available as part of the desktop Pro Tools (Mac/Windows) application and as an iPad app at this time, but there are plans for both iPhone and Android support.
The Sketch iPad app is free, as is the Pro Tools Intro Mac/Windows application that includes the sketch window.
No, only one version of the Sketch iPad app and Sketch window features 16 tracks and virtually unlimited scenes. The differences in capabilities come into play when Sketches are brought into the Pro Tools Edit/Mix environment (track counts, etc.).
Sketch files use the .ptsketch extension.
Save your Sketches to the cloud or email them, then open them on iPad or desktop.
Unlike Pro Tools sessions that point to associated content folders, Sketch files are all self-contained, with all related content included.
- Sync your Sketch to play in time with a linear Pro Tools session to work in parallel with non-linear and linear workflows.
- Drag and drop any/all Sketch clips into the linear Pro Tools timeline to further work on your arrangement, bring the full power of Pro Tools to bear, and achieve the best mix possible.
- You can also “pin” a Sketch to one or more Pro Tools sessions (using the pin button at the top right of the Sketch window)—this ensures that when you open the Pro Tools session, the pinned Sketch will also open automatically.
- The Pro Tools Sketch window requirements are identical to the Pro Tools desktop application.
- The Pro Tools iPad app requires iPad OS16 or later.
New Usability Features
Amongst Sketch’s addition to all Pro Tools versions, two exciting new usability features are also arriving that have been asked for for years. In 2023.9, Pro Tools Studio and Ultimate users can now quickly create a new session based on a defined range within a session. This allows you to select a portion of a session you’re working on and create an entirely new session using that selection.
New in Pro Tools 2023.9 is the ability to drag and drop plug-ins (available in all versions of Pro Tools), allowing users to rearrange or reorder their plug-ins without recalling the settings they had made. This simple yet invigorating adjustment to the standard Pro Tools workflow opens the doors to demoing signal flow stages on the fly and ultimately gives users the keys to their creativity.
Welcome Back, Perpetual Licenses
On top of all the new changes with Pro Tools 2023.9, Avid also delivered a highly requested upgrade to their flagship DAW: perpetual licenses have returned. Now available for Pro Tools Artist, Studio, and Ultimate users is the ability to upgrade once at a discounted rate without paying a monthly subscription throughout the year.
To simplify keeping perpetual license customers current, Pro Tools Perpetual Updates + Support Plan Renewals and Pro Tools Perpetual Updates + Support Plan Upgrade (Get Current) have been consolidated into Pro Tools Perpetual Upgrades. There will no longer be a separate, higher-priced upgrade for customers who have dropped off their Updates + Support plans.