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Pro Tools, is it worth the investment?

Hi All

Looking to upgrade our studio in Mauritius, and I'm wondering if its worth going for Pro Tools.

I've worked on Pro Tools at college, and enjoyed the interface.

But my question is really is it worth going for something else, which might be better 'value for money'.

Our budget is approximatly £12Kor $18K.

Looking forward to any comments

Comments

Midlandmorgan Wed, 11/23/2005 - 04:44
Just a couple questions you need to ask yourself:

- Will having a loaded HD system bring you the business to pay for it? (if yes, continue; if no then reconsider)
- Do you plan on sending your raw tracks, etc out to other studios for further work/mixing (if yes, continue; if no reconsider)
- Do you have the cash flow required to keep up with the current and constant changes in soft and hardware )if yes, continue, if no reconsider)
- Do you LIKE the HD system? (If yes, get it, if not continue looking)

Only you can make the decision of "is it worth it?" Right now, to me and my needs, its not....but you may have different needs.

Better value? Impossible to determine...but there are alternatives that are being used all the time to crank out hit records....

BTW: I fight this battle on a weekly basis...so I completely understand your position.... who knows? Next week I may have an HD2 delivered....I may not...things change.

anonymous Wed, 11/23/2005 - 06:10
Thanks for your comments Ken.

I guess that was kind of what i was expecting to hear.

But it seams that the cash flow is an issue which will probabably make me go for something else.

Where i am in Mauritius the music industry doesn't generate much cash...BLOOBY PIRATES flood the market place with pirated local music, which means that genuine sales are crashing at a serious pace, making production budgets fall in proportion.

anonymous Thu, 11/24/2005 - 08:45
It's not worth anyway.
For that money you can buy:
- a far more powerful DAW, (i.e. Logic Pro)
- a Mac
- a cinema display 30"
- a great ADDA interface (i.e. Apogee or Motu)
and more.

Don't be sucked in the Pro Tools blackhole. I was there for 8 years and now i'm free. I make more money because i'm more productive with Logic.
There are other nice DAW out there for an honest price, like Nuendo, or Digital Performer.
And if you really love the Pro Tools interface, don't even mean going HD, just go NATIVE (Pro Tools LE, Mbox..) , because it sounds even better than it's HD counterpart, for a fraction of the price.

Last but not least, if you don't believe, try.

(message for all frustrated PT users: i know you will become very angry and attack me, bash me hardly, but it's better to help honestly somebody, instead of dropping him in the same s*hit you are surfing...)

Kev Thu, 11/24/2005 - 12:04
I've been using all the programs for a very long time.

Last night I loaded a very very old demo-song from the late 90's.
A PT 4.0 session ... 44.1 / 16
I loaded into an HD system on a G4/400
We liked it and decided it may be part of the next album.
I re-organised it and converted it to a 24 bit session. Added some midi and Reason.
Then saved as a PC compatable and sent it to a Firewire drive.
The Singer Song writer took the session home for more work. He uses an XP powered 001 system.

It all works.

I was a very heavy C-Lab notator user in the 80's and 90's.
As such Logic was a clear choice and although I was an Atari user with both C-Lab and SoundTools (pre ProTools).
Logic didn't ever seem to work on the Atari so the PCB and Windows was the Logic choice.

We all know where that is now. Old Logic songs don't load into the new application.
However,
it is my intention to get Logic again when I upgrade the HD system to G5.

I also have multiple Cubase versions and on both platforms(not used anymore).
I also run Final Cut Pro.
The list of now defunct software is very very long and that does include Digidesign Software.

Giovanni_Speranza says that " It's not worth anyway. "

I use many DAW's including AMS Logic 3 and an AudoFile.
and I get most work done on ProTools in any of it's forms.

so I will disagree

anonymous Sun, 11/27/2005 - 07:59
Hi, I have been making records for the last 5 years with the Protools 001-002 line and although you sometimes run into the wall mixing there are always ways to get around it. I use a 002R with a Rosetta 800, a G5 dual 1.8 mac with 2 gig of ram. I monitor thru the Rosetta, use it for clock and do most of my tracking thru it, and use the 002r inputs only when I am tracking a four piece band off the floor. In mix if I run out of sytem headroom I typically bounce my 8 to 12 tracks of drums down to a stereo pair (except kick and Snare) to give me more system headroom. Far cheaper than a HD outfit, but if I can justify the upgrade someday, the Rosetta is still useful as it can hook directly to an HD sustem.
Where I live (Regina, SK, Canada) every studio I deal with uses Protools in some form or another so moving projects back and forth is very simple.

anonymous Thu, 12/01/2005 - 04:06
I did the same, for the same reason, Logic Pro, which utilizes the same sound architecture as Nuendo, sounds obviously better than TDM, which sounds blured to me and to many other sound engineers i know.
Not to mention the power. For the same price you get X time the power (in real time) and unlimited power with the very fast and easy "freeze" feature.

Calgary Thu, 12/01/2005 - 05:00
"Protools sounds better than Nuendo"? :shock:

I've read a couple absolutely brilliant engineers saying the exact opposite so I doubt this is the case. Nuendo is in use by some fairly excellent talent. I've not read anything bad about it from any skilled engineers who are experienced with it and I doubt they'd be using it if it were audibly inferior.

I've heard lots of terrible music made on ProTools and lots of great stuff made in Nuendo and vice versa. 8-)

iznogood Thu, 12/01/2005 - 06:19
Calgary wrote: "Protools sounds better than Nuendo"? :shock:

I've read a couple absolutely brilliant engineers saying the exact opposite so I doubt this is the case. Nuendo is in use by some fairly excellent talent. I've not read anything bad about it from any skilled engineers who are experienced with it and I doubt they'd be using it if it were audibly inferior.

I've heard lots of terrible music made on ProTools and lots of great stuff made in Nuendo and vice versa. 8-)

i know alot of brilliant engineers are saying that.... and i don't care.... alot says adam speakers sounds good :shock:

critical listening is not a thing most engineers do at all... i wish they would.... they would find alot of differences they don't see in their everyday work......

you say you haven't heard anything bad from a skilled engineer.... well now you have....

and i too have heard alot of crap come out of protools...... but under critical listening i still think it sounds better....

but at the end of the day it probably won't matter to the guy downloading your song :shock:

Calgary Thu, 12/01/2005 - 06:52
No offense but I don't believe that ProTools is inherently audibly superior to Nuendo. 8-)

What I do believe is that you are an opinionated individual with an agenda, i.e. "critical listening is not a thing most engineers do at all... " who likely moves quickly in assessing things and, while possibly skilled or even gifted as an engineer, may not be especially well suited for testing DAWs in a completely neutral manner.

Please feel free to post links to any online resource in which any top engineer or producer says "ProTools sounds better than Nuendo" and I will be happy to revisit my position. My belief is that if ProTools did sound audibly superior to Nuendo that it would be no secret amongst professionals. 8-)

Calgary Thu, 12/01/2005 - 15:13
don't use it cause some hotshots says so in an ad....
Good point.

I don't have the listening skills yet to identify the difference in a meaningful way but I'd definitely love to read an article where some people with skilled ears do a double blind test between tracks produced in Neundo and tracks produced in ProTools and then guesses which is which. 8-)

anonymous Thu, 12/01/2005 - 15:19
I don't want to seem arrogant but i have golden ears, i can tell you which harmonics are in a fart, in real time (if it's long enough...).
And i can confirm (after 8 years spent giving avay money to Digi because i needed that real time audio engine, unavailable with native systems of that time) that Pro Tools TDM sounds BLURED.
Instead Pro Tools LE (any native version) sounds great as Nuendo and Logic.
The problem is the crappy TDM engine.
If you NEED a blured sound, go for TDM, i had interesting results when i needed a song sounding "behind the loudspeakers". But if you want FRONT END tracks, there is no way to acheive it with Pro Tools. Any try to put the sound in your face will damage it (shrill, dull, boomy sound)

anonymous Thu, 12/01/2005 - 15:30
Calgary wrote: Giovanni do you feel that ProTools has inherently better sound quality than Nuendo? How does Nuendo stack up against the various ProTools rigs in your estimation?

Better? i said Worse!
Pro Tools LE, Logic Pro, Digital Performer, Nuendo and almost all other DAW in the market sound basically the same (with no plugins), Pro Tools HD sounds worse.

iznogood Fri, 12/02/2005 - 00:59
calgary.....

have you ever studied how many "respected producers/engineers" work on protools???

what we're discussing here is (mostly) a matter of taste..... but to say that it is "the majority" that "hates" protools is so wrong i don't have words to describe it.....

maybe your confusing it with engineers claiming that digital has a sound...

:roll: :roll: :roll:

anyway a skilled engineer will be able to make good sounding records on both systems.....

Calgary Fri, 12/02/2005 - 01:48
The majority I've read or spoke too seem to think that "Nuendo doesn't inherently sound worse than ProTools". I've read quite a few posts around the net on that topic, it seems to be a popular debate in some circles. I think the reasons most professionals work with ProTools are:

1. The clients want it. It's a name they ask for and expect.
2. It's easily extensible if you have the budget.
3. It's a reliable solution for real world production.
4. Good 3rd party support.

Plus other reasons. I don't think many people with "golden ears" work with ProTools because they feel it's the best sounding system money can buy. I agree with you, a good engineer/producer can make excellent music on either platform. IMO a great engineer can make a great album with nothing but a 2 channel analog recorder, a good band, 2 decent mics and a good room. They proved it over and over and over at Muscle Shoals. :D

FWIW where I live if you don't have ProTools it makes it hard to sell studio time. Everyone wants ProTools. They don't even know the difference between the systems, but as long as you have "ProTools" they figure you must be worth $50/hr or whatever. All the studios put the ProTools logo in their ads. Tons of music comes out of this city, only a small percentage of which is exceptional, and much of that is recorded on analog tape. So you can basically count the number of "great albums built on ProTools" each year here on your fingers. That's not meant to be a criticism I'm just saying that there's a big disconnect here between the studio business and the art of music, moreso than most places. So all in all I get a lot of ProTools propoganda here and I may be a bit hypersensitive to it at this point. :D

McCheese Fri, 12/02/2005 - 02:39
There's a huge debate right now at another wonderful board about ProTools losing some of the low end of recordings. I'm not going to comment either way on that since I haven't personally tested it.

PT is the standard because it was there first. Unfortunately it's still the biggest player in the DAW market. That's slowly changing though.

Yeah, clients want it by name. Clients don't know their ass from their elbow when it comes to recording, but that doesn't change that they're paying the bills.

Given my druthers, I'd choose Logic. If I had a lot of money, I'd keep a PT HD1 system on-site so I could say I had it, but the work would be done in Logic.

anonymous Fri, 12/02/2005 - 04:31
This thread let me think to a similar situation. The Neumann - Rode comparison.
I know great engineers who have plenty of Neumann's but end up using the Rode's ones.
But the client won't even enter the room if they don't see the U87.
So he set both mics in front of the artist, to make him happy, but the one that will be used is 90% the Rode.
I have nothing against Neumann, they are heaven, but Rode is not worse, sometimes even better.

So if Pro Tools was the standard, the reason is simply that some years ago it was the only DAW that worked in real time with "no" latency.
Today a single CPU has the same power as a full DSP card, and a G5 Logic node costs x times less than an Accel, and you can write letters with it!
So IMO, the DSP concept is for se obsolete and if summed with a crappy sound engine, it's trash.

iznogood Fri, 12/02/2005 - 07:22
Calgary wrote: The majority I've read or spoke too seem to think that "Nuendo doesn't inherently sound worse than ProTools". I've read quite a few posts around the net on that topic, it seems to be a popular debate in some circles. I think the reasons most professionals work with ProTools are:

1. The clients want it. It's a name they ask for and expect. yes
2. It's easily extensible if you have the budget. yes
3. It's a reliable solution for real world production. yes
4. Good 3rd party support. yes

Plus other reasons. i use cause it's easier.... had nuendo for a year at work.... never used itI don't think many people with "golden ears" work with ProTools because they feel it's the best sounding system money can buy.then i can't be a golden ear...... so much for 22 years of listeningI agree with you, a good engineer/producer can make excellent music on either platform. IMO a great engineer can make a great album with nothing but a 2 channel analog recorder, a good band, 2 decent mics and a good room. They proved it over and over and over at Muscle Shoals. :D

FWIW where I live if you don't have ProTools it makes it hard to sell studio time. Everyone wants ProTools. They don't even know the difference between the systems, but as long as you have "ProTools" they figure you must be worth $50/hr or whatever. All the studios put the ProTools logo in their ads. Tons of music comes out of this city, only a small percentage of which is exceptional, and much of that is recorded on analog tape. So you can basically count the number of "great albums built on ProTools" each year here on your fingers. then your place differs from the rest of the worldThat's not meant to be a criticism I'm just saying that there's a big disconnect here between the studio business and the art of music, moreso than most places. true.... too many moneymen and adam speakers in this businessSo all in all I get a lot of ProTools propoganda here and I may be a bit hypersensitive to it at this point.me too..... i feel this nuendo talk is so much "flavor of the week".... :D

Calgary Fri, 12/02/2005 - 08:24
Well I'll give you one thing, you're consistent if nothing else. You probably complain about adam speakers in your sleep. You sound like you could use a herbal tea and a nap. :)

Anyhow here's the deal, the person with the best ears I know (a genuine audio genius with credits out the wazoo) uses Otari digital recorders which he says sound much better than ProTools. He owns two fully loaded ProTool rigs for his studio business but he works on the Otaris exclusively for his own projects. Why do you suppose that is? Because your ears are just way better than his? To that I scoff, because this guy can hear miniscule changes in frequencies, he only one of about 4 people I've met with genuine "perfect pitch" and he's got decades of big time experience under his belt including lots of time in major studios.

Nuendo is flavor of the week? Ha, to this I scoff also.

Me lying on my side laughing -> >-|o

:D

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