Digidesign Pro Tools|HD Core Systems Now Available in PCI and PCI Express Versions

Digidesign is now offering two versions of its professional Pro Tools|HD digital audio production systems. By continuing to provide the existing PCI version and releasing a PCI Express (PCIe) version, Digidesign is ensuring continued compatibility of its Pro Tools|HD systems with a wide range of PCI, PCI-X, and PCIe-equipped computers. Existing Pro Tools|HD systems are designed to work in PCI and PCI-X slots only and are not compatible with PCIe technology.

Digidesign has qualified Pro Tools|HD systems for PCIe with the new range of Apple Power Mac G5 computers. Windows-based computers equipped with multiple PCIe expansion slots are not yet commonly available. Digidesign is planning to test and qualify its PCIe systems with Windows-based computers once machines with at least three usable PCIe slots as standard are introduced to the market.

Since the new Power Mac G5 computers have only three usable PCIe expansion slots, initial Digidesign support for PCIe-based Pro Tools|HD systems is limited to a maximum configuration of three cards. If you plan to use the new PCIe-based Power Mac G5 computers and want to build an expanded configuration (beyond three cards), you will need to use the PCI version of the Pro Tools|HD cards in conjunction with the newly introduced Digidesign Expansion|HD expansion chassis.

The Digidesign Expansion|HD expansion chassis is a brand-new six-slot PCI expansion chassis that connects to the host Windows or Mac computer using either a PCI/PCI-X or PCIe expansion slot. With the Digidesign Expansion|HD, you can install expanded Pro Tools|HD configurations on a wide range of PCI, PCI-X, and PCIe-equipped computers.

Hardware Exchange and Crossgrade

PCIe-compatible Pro Tools|HD systems are the same price as their PCI counterparts. Digidesign has expanded its hardware exchange program so you can exchange your Pro Tools LE or legacy Pro Tools TDM system up to a Pro Tools|HD system for PCIe or PCI. In addition, Digidesign is offering a crossgrade program for PCI users who want to transition their Pro Tools|HD system to a host computer with PCIe slots.

Pro Tools HD software version 7.1 will be required for the PCIe systems. As with Pro Tools 7.0 software, users of PCIe systems wishing to exchange sessions with users of Pro Tools 6.9 or earlier software will need to perform a simple “Save Session Copy” operation.

More information is available at the Digidesign site.

Leave a Reply