Should Pro Tools Users Get Same Software Features As Pro Tools HD Users?

05-18-2013 09:45 AM

There seems to be a lot of interest and discussion around a the whole issue of Pro Tools users getting the same software features as Pro Tools HD users. Perhaps Avid have made a rod for their own back, this was in fact what CPTK gave users before it was dropped from Pro Tools 11.
However, there are two sides to this argument - on the one side there are those who want the features but don’t want to have to buy what they see as a hardware dongle. On the other side we have those who have invested a great deal in a full HD/HDX system who feel somewhat p*ssed off when they see none-HD users getting the same software. It’s a fallacy to think that HDX users simply benefit from better software, DSP hardware offers lower latency at higher track counts, so there’s more to this debate than simply a software one.
Some suggest that no other company offers tiered systems, not true. Steinberg have several versions of Cubase, as well as Nuendo. Cakewalk Sonar and Studio One have several versions, Reason comes in two versions. Whereas DP and Logic do not, although one could argue that Garageband is Logic Lite. Furthermore, Apple are a unique case, as the software is part of the complete OS package when buying Apple hardware and is often used as a loss-leader to get people to buy Apple computers. Comparing a FREE copy of Garageband with something like Pro Tools Express or Reason Essentials is not comparing Apples with Apples (forgive the pun). One could also argue, as many PC Emagic users did at the time, that Logic does come with a hardware dongle… a Mac!
Given these fact, is it reasonable to expect Avid to give the same features to every user when many competitors don’t? Is it reasonable to expect the same software without making the same investment?
We would be interested in hearing from both sides on this discussion.