Soon You Can Get Your Hands on Avid's Free (But Limited) Version of Pro Tools

If you've ever wanted to get into film scoring and mixing, now might be the most opportune time to get your feet wet with the new free (but limited) version of Avid's powerful audio workstation Pro Tools.

Free is always the best price for anything, but how useful could the free version of something so powerful be? Well, that depends on how you define "helpful". If it means being able to compose music for films, mix a bunch of tracks, and export professional work you're going to be very disappointed. There's a comparison table on Avid's website that shows you what you will and won't find in the free version of Pro Tools, but The Verge sums up the big stuff:

The free price tag gets you a considerably more limited set of features than you'd get in Express, including a maximum of four track inputs instead of eight, and support for just three projects. It's got the same limit of 16 MIDI tracks that Express has, as opposed to the full version's 512 tracks. You also can't export your projects as an MP3, or to iTunes and Soundcloud.

However, if "helpful" means learning how to navigate Pro Tools and getting familiar with its capabilities, albeit on a much smaller scale, then, yes, the free version certainly is.

Clearly Avid's intention for Pro Tools First wasn't to give professionals free access to their software. Rather, it gives those who are interested in potentially getting into mixing and composing a chance to play in the sandbox a little. Really, Pro Tools First is really for giving newcomers their first opportunity to get acquainted with a piece of software that is usually $899.

Head on over to Avid's website to learn more. Pro Tools First isn't available to download quite yet, but click here to sign up to be notified when it is.     

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Your Comment


Logic Pro for life!

January 23, 2015 at 1:04PM


I still have my Pro Tools 001, but Logic Pro is affordable and powerful.

January 23, 2015 at 10:38PM


I'll never understand comment ranking here on NFS. Lorenzo's perfectly benign comments has a -5 right now. My gracious read is that people just stab blindly at their screen, and Lorenzo is our newest victim of statistical anomaly; my less gracious read is that at least five of you are turds.

January 30, 2015 at 9:24AM


And since all it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing: here, Lorenzo, have an upvote.

January 30, 2015 at 9:28AM


For someone like myself who has always wanted to get into mixing my projects in more detail, this looks wonderful. A great way to learn the software and become very familiar before growing out of it. Does anybody know the release date of Pro Tools First?

January 23, 2015 at 6:45PM