Tools 9 - stands alone
Big news from the AES in San Francisco: late last night UK time, Avid dropped the bomp on the much anticipated Pro Tools 9 announcement. Following its recent ProTools Native announcement, which allows native systems to run with a special PCi Card, they've now gone the whole hog - meaning its possible to run Pro Tools without any Avid hardware. More importantly, with your own choice of hardware or even none - so you can work on sessions using just the headphone out if you wish. So Pro Tools is now a software only product, clearly this is a big change for the company and will presumably open up ProTools to a much wider user base.
With Pro Tools 9, you can now run up to 96 mono or stereo voices, (192 voices with Pro Tools HD systems), 256 internal busses, and 160 aux tracks.
They've also added Avid EuCon support (remember they recently bought Euphonix) and perhaps the real biggie - Automatic Delay Compensation is now standard - apprently the number one request from the ProTools IdeaScale User Forum. You also get Beat Detective, DigiBase asset management tool, an updated 7.1 Surround Panner, new variable stereo pan depths and numerous other enhancements.
Pricing starts at $599 and is available from November 12th Worldwide.