Fusing extreme onboard processing, uncompromising sonic performance, and industry-standard Pro Tools software, Avid Pro Tools | Carbon gives artists, bands, producers, and engineers a unified and premium hybrid production system for creating music with a fluid, professional workflow, supercharged plug-in power, and all the I/O needed to run an impressive session.
The heart, soul, and brain of this system is the sleek audio interface, which packs 25 inputs, 34 outputs, an abundance of built-in DSP chips, and a comprehensive control center into a space-saving 1 RU rack-mountable chassis. Forget about dealing with PCIe cards, Thunderbolt adapters, and limited USB speeds; this interface connects to your Mac computer (Windows support planned for the future) via high-bandwidth, AVB-based Ethernet.
Of the 25 inputs on Pro Tools | Carbon, eight are XLR-1/4″ mic/line combo jacks that tap into Avid’s most transparent preamps to date, ensuring coloration-free gain for a sound that’s true to your source. Not only do they boast a staggering 126 dB of dynamic range, but they also have a trick up their sleeve; their Variable Z (on mic/line inputs 5-8 and the two 1/4″ Hi-Z inputs) provides adjustable impedance to make your mics and instruments sound their best. Beyond that, you’ll find a DB25 for eight channels of line-level inputs and two optical inputs for up to 16 ADAT digital input channels, perfect for adding a couple ADAT-equipped 8-channel mic preamps to your setup. As if that wasn’t enough, Carbon offers an integrated footswitchable talkback mic that can be routed and recorded like any other input.
No matter which analog input you use, you’re assured an exceptionally accurate path into the digital realm thanks to the presence of four ADCs per channel and 32-bit operation (192 kHz max) from the input all the way to the Pro Tools software. Combine that with the double-resolution JetPLL clock and you get immense headroom, clear separation, and ultrastable clocking at all times. As you would expect from an interface of this caliber, there are BNC connections for wordclock in and out, so Pro Tools | Carbon can serve as the primary clock reference for the rest of your digital gear, or it can sync to a dedicated master clock.
Leaving the interface, there are plenty of outputs to provide all the cue and monitoring connections your studio setup requires for smooth, professional sessions. For speakers, there are two 1/4″ main monitor outputs, an 8-channel DB25 line / alt monitor output, and front-panel controls for A/B/C speaker switching, volume adjustment, dim, and more. With four independent 1/4″ headphone outputs on the interface, Pro Tools | Carbon can feed separate cue mixes to the various performing artists, no cue amps needed. Alternatively, utilize the two optical outputs to run up to 16 channels of ADAT digital signal to a multichannel headphone distribution system.
The Pro Tools | Carbon interface is loaded with a jaw-dropping serving of built-in DSP—eight HDX DSP chips and a custom-designed FPGA —to bolster your setup with intense plug-in power (at no expense to your CPU) and near-zero-latency monitoring (less than 1 ms) while you record. Yes, you can track using real-time AAX DSP plug-ins with imperceptible latency. When it comes time to mix, the new Hybrid Engine gives you the flexibility to switch each track between the onboard DSP and your CPU, so you have total control over the allocation of your system’s resources.
Being a hybrid audio production system, Pro Tools | Carbon not only features the powerful and versatile 25×34 Ethernet audio interface, but also comes with a complete software package comprising the industry-standard Pro Tools Standard DAW (1-Year Subscription license with a Perpetual Parachute license attached), 116 AAX plug-ins, nine premium plug-ins from brands such as Brainworx, McDSP, UVI, and Native Instruments, and a 5.4GB sound library. Compose, record, edit, and mix with the same features, workflow, and tools used by hit-making professionals all over the world.
Hybrid Audio Production System
By merging industry-standard software and highly capable hardware, with onboard DSP, Pro Tools | Carbon gives artists, bands, producers, and engineers a hybrid system with unleashed power for fast, fluid, and professional sessions that won’t bog down the studio computer.
HDX DSP Acceleration
Loaded with eight HDX DSP chips and a custom-designed FPGA, Pro Tools | Carbon supercharges your system without burdening your CPU. The FPGA routes audio with near-zero latency while the HDX DSPs handle real-time plug-in processing, performing at a shocking 22.4 billion operations per second. So, you can run massive sessions and tons of plug-ins, and still record with ultralow-latency monitoring (less than 1 ms) while your computer’s CPU remains accessible for handling virtual instruments, more plug-ins, and other creative tasks.
Hybrid Engine with DSP and Native Plug-Ins
Each AAX DSP plug-in has a native counterpart, allowing you to switch between plug-in power sources at the touch a button. Put a track in DSP mode for recording, and Carbon accelerates real-time AAX DSP plug-ins while your CPU plays back the rest of your mix; create polished cue mixes and track with zero audible latency. Bring the track back to native mode for mixing, and Pro Tools automatically takes care of the technical tasks for you, assigning the track’s plug-ins to your computer’s CPU. This is the power of the new Hybrid Engine.
64-Bit AAX Technology
With 64-bit float double-precision processing, the AAX plug-in architecture provides expansive dynamic range and enables true hybrid capability, so you can benefit from the same impeccable sound quality in both native and HDX DSP domains. Even if you leave Carbon at home when you travel, you can mix without losing plug-in access, and collaborate with others who don’t have the interface.
Pristine 32-Bit /192 kHz AD/DA Conversion
Pro Tools | Carbon boasts four ADCs per channel, yielding an impressive 126 dB of dynamic range. The entire gain structure—from input, to the HDX DSPs, to the Pro Tools software—works at uniform 32-bit precision to offer more headroom with no signal degradation. This means you can capture clean, pristine, natural audio at up to 192 kHz every time you record.
By implementing a double-resolution version of the patented JetPLL jitter-elimination technology, the clock in Pro Tools | Carbon runs twice as fast as typical JetPLL-based clocks. With twice the accuracy and exceptionally low jitter, it ensures high-fidelity capture and playback with optimal separation and clean sound free of distortion and artifacts. To ensure proper synchronization with other digital equipment, Pro Tools | Carbon has BNC jacks for wordclock input and output.
Eight Ultraclean Mic Preamps plus Hi-Z Inputs
Pro Tools | Carbon features Avid’s most transparent preamps to date, sporting a padless design, immense dynamic range (126 dB), and support for 32-bit / 192 kHz conversion. There are eight mic preamps accessible via XLR-1/4″ mic/line combo inputs, or you can utilize the 8-channel DB25 line input to bypass Carbon’s preamps, and use your own outboard gear instead. Need to track guitar and bass? Plug into the two front-panel 1/4″ Hi-Z inputs, and record your electric axe straight into Pro Tools.
Variable Input Impedance
Mic preamps 5-8 and the two Hi-Z inputs feature built-in Variable Z, allowing you to adjust input impedance to optimize or modify the tone of any microphone or instrument. Experiment with the impedance to find the exact sound you’re after.
Four Headphone Ports and Multiple Monitor Outs
Whether you need to track or mix, Pro Tools | Carbon is poised to manage your monitoring needs with ease. It sports four independent 1/4″ headphone outputs on the front panel, so you can feed separate cue mixes to the members of a full band without having to rely on external cue amps.
The interface offers two 1/4″ main monitor outputs and an 8-channel DB25 output, which can be used for alternate monitors or line-level outs to a summing mixer. The front panel provides straightforward controls for A/B/C speaker switching, volume adjustment, dim, and more.
16-Channel ADAT I/O
Dual optical inputs and dual optical outputs make Pro Tools | Carbon ready for expansion. Snag a couple ADAT-equipped 8-channel mic preamps (available separately) to record 16 analog mic sources in addition to the eight onboard mic preamps. The optical outputs can be routed to external D/A converters or a multichannel headphone distribution system such as the Hear Technologies Hear Back PRO (available separately).
Ethernet Connectivity for Mac
Connecting Pro Tools | Carbon to your host Mac computer (Windows support planned for the future) is as easy as plugging the supplied Ethernet cable into an available Ethernet port on your laptop or desktop computer (don’t connect through a router, switch, or other AVB device). The super-fast, high-bandwidth Ethernet connection is a proprietary version of AVB and not only preserves the highest possible sound quality from input to output, but also supports future workflow enhancements.
It is also possible to connect Carbon to a Thunderbolt port on your computer using qualified adapters (available separately). For example, you can plug Carbon into a Thunderbolt 2 to Ethernet adapter and use a Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter if your computer only has Thunderbolt 3.
To quietly keep Carbon cool, even when stacked with other gear in your rack, Avid innovated a thermal design that utilizes a single axial fan, which gently pushes air from the front of the interface to the back, modulating its speed to dissipate heat. Plus, it’s super quiet, so it can stay in the same room with you as you record. To ensure reliable powering, Pro Tools | Carbon incorporates an internal power supply and a standard IEC connection for hookup to an AC outlet.
Pro Tools Standard Software
Carbon comes with a 1-year subscription to Pro Tools Standard software, which includes access to the Avid Complete Plugin Bundle, Celemony Melodyne Essential, HEAT, UVI Falcon 2, a 5.4GB sound library, and standard support, renewable after the 1-year period.
If you choose not to renew your subscription, your Pro Tools license includes a Perpetual Parachute that allows you to continue using Pro Tools at the last version you downloaded (it won’t ever expire), along with a core set of plug-ins (including the nine premium plug-ins). Please note that you will need to renew your subscription if you’d like to continue receiving access to the latest Pro Tools updates, standard support, and all bundled items noted above.
Pro Tools | Carbon includes 116 AAX plug-ins (over 70 of them with AAX DSP counterparts), including UVI Falcon, Celemony Melodyne Essential, the Avid Complete Plugin Bundle, HEAT, and three free months of Antares Auto-Tune Unlimited (including Auto-Tune Hybrid). Additionally, it comes with nine premium plug-ins from various third-party manufacturers.
Arturia Rev PLATE-140
Brainworx bx_console N
Brainworx Purple Audio MC77
Embody Immerse Virtual Studio
McDSP 6050 Ultimate Channel Strip HD
Native Instruments Vintage Organs
UVI Model D