Pro Tools is the industry standard DAW, like it or not, but with that said there are some basic features it continues to lack that are long overdue.
This is not about comparing Pro Tools with other DAWs, all DAWs leapfrog each other during their ongoing development cycles, but what we mean by basics are fundamental tools in any recording process that should have been with us a long time ago.
- A Phase Switch On The Channel
Having to insert a plug-in just to get a phase switch is unnecessary in an ‘industry standard’ DAW. It’s not like it is a modern idea, this feature has been on nearly every professional audio mixing console for several decades. Any questions?
- A Mono Switch On The Stereo Output
Sometimes it is essential to check your audio in mono, you would be surprised how much audio can go missing when you flip between stereo and mono.
- Channel Presets (Without using a hack)
Constantly having to re-invent the wheel each time you create tracks by setting up audio or VI chains is tiresome. Yes there’s a hack but it shouldn’t need to be the case.
- Input Monitoring For All
From the Pro Tools user manual “Track Input monitoring lets you toggle individual audio tracks between Auto Input and Input Only monitoring modes at any time, during playback, recording, while stopped, and even when a track is not record-enabled. TrackInput monitoring pro- vides the necessary monitoring flexibility for over- dubbing and mixing, and is similar to input switch- ing on analog multitrack recorders and similar machines.” We get that HD users should get some extra features for the extra money they shell out, but limitingthe basic need for input monitoring as a paid upgrade is as silly as making the ability to record in Pro Tools a paid upgrade. Whoever came up with this policy must be the person who never bought his wife an engagement ring - talk about tight!
- Variable Loop Lengths In MIDI Tracks
We had it in C-Lab Notator several decades ago, if Avid are serious about music producers using Pro Tools for production then variable loop lengths in MIDI composition is a must have no-brainer. What this enables composers to do is to get drum tracks down fast as well as repetivitive parts such as arps and bass-lines. Yes we have looping and duplication but I do miss this basic feature I was using in 80s MIDI sequencers.
How many of these are on your list? Which basics do you you keep wishing were in Pro Tools?