Avid Introduces Pro Tools | S3 Desktop Control Surface and Offers Incentives for Pro Tools 11 Upgrades

October 13 2014, 09:00
At the 137th AES Convention in Los Angeles, Avid introduced a major addition to its suite of control surfaces for sound recording, mixing, and editing. The compact Pro Tools | S3 desktop control surface is a streamlined, versatile mixing solution that gives sound engineers the control they need to work more ergonomically and efficiently, and expand mixing capabilities.

When used together, Avid Pro Tools | S3 and Pro Tools | Software—both part of the Avid Artist Suite of creative tools powered by the Avid MediaCentral Platform—deliver a tightly integrated approach to mixing and recording in smaller-sized studios or mobile settings. As Avid explains, “In today’s competitive post and music mixing environment, shrinking budgets and tighter schedules are commonplace. To succeed, audio professionals need to streamline and accelerate their workflow, as well as broaden the scope and capabilities of their mixing solutions to handle the most sophisticated projects. The affordable Pro Tools | S3 delivers the power, efficiency, and versatility engineers need to deliver fast turnarounds in the most demanding environments.”

The Pro Tools | S3 control surface is designed to help sound engineers take on a diverse range of projects. Based on the award-winning Pro Tools | S6 control surface, the S3 features open integration with Pro Tools | Software and other EUCON-enabled digital audio workstations like Logic Pro, Cubase, and more. The compact form factor fits into any space, making Pro Tools | S3 ideal for small project studios or on-the-go music and post mixing.
Users can customize the surface to their unique needs by creating custom channel layouts, all recallable at any time. Pro Tools | S3 can switch between two applications with ease, giving users the choice to work however they want, and the capability to take on the largest, most demanding mixes.

According to Avid, Pro Tools | S3 easily integrates with solutions across the Avid MediaCentral Platform, as well as a studio’s existing systems and workflows to deliver deep hardware/software integration and control at a fraction of the price of high-end consoles.

Full hardware controls include 16 channel strips, each with a touch-sensitive, motorized fader and 10-segment signal level meter (supports up to 6 fader banks); 32 touch-sensitive, push-button rotary encoders for panning, gain control, plug-in parameter adjustments, and more (16 channel control, 16 assignable), each with a tricolor LED function indicator, and 32 high-resolution OLED displays for viewing track names/numbers, detailed metering data (from mono to 5.1 surround), parameter names/values, current automation mode, and more.

The surface also features solo, mute, channel select, and record/automation-enable keys on every channel, a touch strip for easy access to transport controls, and dozens of dedicated buttons and switches for navigation, automation, control assignment, and software control.

More importantly, for mobile operations and tracking, the S3 control surface also features a built-in 4x6 AVB Core Audio interface, including 2 XLR mic/line inputs, 2 TRS line inputs, 2 XLR line outputs, 2 TRS line outputs, and a stereo headphone output. Avid confirmed the Pro Tools | S3 will be available November 2014

New Pro Tools licensing
The Avid booth at the AES Convention in Los Angeles was also promoting a new added value for Pro Tools | Software and Pro Tools | HD Software by including upcoming features – such as future cloud collaboration capabilities, as well as a standard Avid Support plan – with new purchases, upgrades, and crossgrades for one full year. Customers who buy or upgrade to Pro Tools 11 by December 20, 2014 receive extended coverage through March 2016. With this new licensing, Avid is making it easy for Pro Tools customers to get on the Avid MediaCentral Platform and stay current into the future.

Starting in November, Avid will enable owners of Pro Tools 9/10, Pro Tools | HD 9/10, Pro Tools Express, Pro Tools LE, and Pro Tools M-Powered to upgrade or crossgrade to Pro Tools 11/Pro Tools | HD 11 and access the latest, most powerful workflows, plus get one year of renewable standard Avid Support—at savings of up to 60% off previous upgrade pricing. Customers upgrading now will have access to upcoming features including cloud collaboration capabilities.
Also starting in November, customers can purchase Pro Tools | Software with a one-year, renewable subscription support plan that also includes all Pro Tools | Software upgrades throughout the duration of their plan, as well as one year of renewable Avid Standard Support.

As a special limited-time offer, customers who purchase a new license of Pro Tools | Software with Standard Support or an upgrade/crossgrade to Pro Tools 11 with Standard Support by December 20, 2014 will have their support plan extended through March 31, 2016. That equals up to 17 months of Pro Tools upgrades, updates, and support instead of the usual 12, depending on when customers purchase. Moving forward, customers will be able to easily renew their plan annually for just $199 (Pro Tools) or $599 (Pro Tools | HD) per year to continue receiving support, updates, and upgrades, so they always have access to the latest tools and features. 

The new Apogee bundles
Avid was also promoting the previously announced Pro Tools | Duet and Pro Tools | Quartet bundle packages, which combine Pro Tools software with portable USB audio interfaces by Apogee. Now available, Avid Pro Tools | Duet and Pro Tools | Quartet provide everything needed for professional music creation, enabling to turn any Mac or PC into a high-performance yet portable music and audio production studio. The bundles include more than 60 AAX virtual instruments, effects, sound processing, and utility plug-ins for Pro Tools. EUCON-enabled Pro Tools I/O Control Software enables users to control the interfaces using any Artist Series controller, or a Mac or PC.

Pricing for     Pro Tools | Duet is $1,099 USD, €989 excluding VAT or £970.80 including VAT
Pricing for Pro Tools | Quartet is $1,899 USD, €1,789 excluding VAT and £1,762.80 including VAT.
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