The End of Digidesign Pro Tools?

Digidesign, makers Pro Tools, the industry standard in Digital Audio Workstations (DAW), as well as a slew of plug-ins, consoles and live performance rigs, is retiring… well, the name at least. The end of Digidesign and their flagship software Pro Tools is far from over, but parent company Avid, makers of video and film software, has decided to merge Pro Tools, as well as their other three major companies, M-Audio, Pinnacle and Sibelius, under the umbrella name Avid.

So what does the new company name mean for Digidesign? Not much really; Pro Tools will still be ProTools and staff and support will remain virtually unchanged. The only change customers will notice will be the Avid name and new logo on upcoming packaging and a new website that will be launching on April 12, 2010.

Avid promises the new site will include improved navigation, organization and overall  user experience. The new Avid.com will include all current Digidesign.com pages. At first, the new site will only include Digidesign US, but within a few months the international Digidesign websites will be included as well.

Who will see the biggest advantage? Customers who purchase products from multiple Avid companies; such as ProTools HD for DAW, M-Audio Axiom Pro 49 for a MIDI controller and Sibelius for scoring music. Digidesign.com will be the first company website to integrate into Avid.com, but M-Audio.com, Sibelius.com and Pinnaclesys.com will soon follow suite. This complete transition will begin providing multi product line customers benefits like a simplified product registration, single login ID, and a one-stop source for all product information, support, downloads and news.

The biggest advantage most likely will come by the way of new products and current product integration – like the recent additions Pro Tools M-Powered, Video Satellite between Media Composer and Pro Tools, and Sibelius integration into Pro Tools. Think of Adobe after their acquisition Macromedia – each of the company’s related software now integrate seamlessly, allowing users to flip back and forth, starting projects in one program and polishing in another, using each programs unique benefits to your advantage. Don’t rule out the possibility of suite packages or integrated plug-in packages.

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