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When you are ready to record your latest masterpiece, where do you turn? There was a time when the only way to record your music was to hightail it down to a professional studio, and pay for a producer and/or engineer to sweat all the details, from mic placement to mixing, to get your life’s work onto a thin strip of magnetic tape. Now there are a multitude of recording options for the aspiring artist, from stand-alone units with proprietary software, to off-the-shelf laptops with basic recording software included. None, however, can match Avid’s Pro Tools for usability, universal acceptance, and performance, regardless of your ability or budget.
What initially started as a collection of drum sound chips and a sound editor for a sampling keyboard in the mid-1980s has evolved into the most widely-used audio production software in the industry. Pro Tools 9 is the newest version aimed at the consumer market, featuring an array of software and hardware options to fit your recording needs. At its core is the completely re-architected version of the software, which allows you to work with or without an interface for the first time, whether from Avid or a compatible unit from an independent manufacturer. This is a huge asset when you want to mix or master your tracks without having to connect your hardware, or you want to use a third-party interface. The software is available as a standalone, or you can upgrade your recent version at a reduced price. And of particular interest to guitarists, the software comes with an updated version of Eleven, a powerful plug-in that sets the standard for emulating an incredible range of vintage and modern tube amps (such as a ’59 Fender Bassman, a ’66 Vox AC30, or a ’92 Mesa/Boogie, for example), speaker cabinets and microphones - all right in your computer. There’s also everything from emulated spring reverbs to phaser effects, Hammond organ-type or Mini Grand piano keyboard plug-ins, Time Shift time/pitch stretching, drum loops - enough virtual instruments and sound processing effects to realize even your most ambitious sonic dreams.
There are several Avid interfaces that you can buy separately, or bundled with the software to get your guitar signal from your axe to your computer. From the ultra-compact Mbox Mini to the high-performance Mbox Pro, or the more powerful 003 Factory console, they offer a range of input/output options, meters and other features, all with high-resolution audio and above all, with the legendary Pro Tools stability and universal acceptance. Whether you take your tracks to a pro studio for mixing and mastering, or record your drums at a studio and overdub your vocals and guitars at home, or even record an entire album at home by yourself, this recording platform is the tool of choice for creating smoking guitar tones, and getting them recorded as they should be heard.
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