So you wait for a new Pro Tools|HD interface to come along and suddenly there's three of 'em. Avid have just announced this brace of new hardware I/O which represent the "Next generation of A/D D/A convertors". With configurations for analog and digital I/O, including a 64 channel MADI interface, there should be enough for all comers. The most interesting perhaps being the HD OMNI which combines 2 channels of high quality mic preamps, I/O and monitoring section for a compact Pro Tools setup.
Additionally, Curv, a new soft-knee analog limiter in HD OMNI and HD I/O, lets you track hotter signals when recording, preventing distortion when overloading inputs.
Here's the skinny:
·HD I/O: Enables customers to achieve the highest-quality audio record and playback with the option of three space-saving configurations—16x16 analog, 16x16 digital and 8x8x8 analog and digital—in a 2 RU rack mountable interface.
·HD OMNI: Frees up customer workspace by integrating the functionality of numerous costly outboard components into an all-in-one premium sound solution for recording, mixing and monitoring. Features include state-of-the-art conversion, two world-class mic pre-amps, headphone outputs, a full-featured surround monitor section and a 14x26 channel persistent mixer that functions even when the computer is off—letting users listen to CDs, MP3 players, keyboards and drum machines without the need for an additional mixer.
·HD MADI: Opens up workflows and speeds production time for broadcast, live sound and post production sound professionals by offering the ability to easily connect Pro Tools|HD systems to industry-standard MADI infrastructures, without the need for a format converter. Built-in sample rate conversion on all inputs and outputs allow customers to integrate into workflows with multiple sample rates (upstream and downstream) using a single, 64-channel 1 RU rack mountable interface.
HEAT— Premium Analog Warmth in a Digital Package, Minus the Plug-Ins
Designed in collaboration with digital/analog engineer Dave Hill of Crane Song, the HEAT software option for Pro Tools|HD systems is an innovation for mixers who value the warmth and sound qualities of tubes, tape machines and analog consoles, but want to eliminate the complications and expenses of using tape machines and vintage outboard processors, or managing plug-in changes across multiple tracks. Customers can now directly add the best sounding euphonic qualities to every track in the Pro Tools mixer using a single, global control, dramatically enhancing sound quality and improving settings management.