Pro Audio

Avid: Pro Tools Sketch

A fast new way to a fresh new song

We all know Pro Tools. Since the 90s Pro Tools has been the industry standard DAW for all major recording studios (and pretty much all audio editing). Since then however we’ve seen a whole host of other companies creating their own Digital Audio Workstations, each with their own unique benefits and drawbacks.

Since its inception Pro Tools has always been the DAW of choice for its recording, editing and mixing workflow, whilst other DAWs like Ableton Live and Logic Pro have gone down a route more catered towards modern production and songwriting. But Pro Tools sketch is a huge step for Avid towards serving this group of artists.


Sketch is available both as a free IOS app and is also included as a desktop version in the Pro Tools 2023.9 update. It features a loop based, nonlinear workflow. You can load up 16 total audio or instrument tracks and can record audio using any microphone compatible with your IPad, or the inbuilt microphone.

iOS app

The app also includes over 1 GB of loops and the playcell and synthcell software instruments which include a variety of different sounds for quick songwriting inspiration. If you’re on desktop you can of course use any of your regular software instruments, recording and monitoring equipment.

Loop Library

The main window works like a grid. On the vertical axis on the left you organise your sections and drop your audio or software instrument elements in along that row. At the top, along the horizontal axis you can drop your sections to create the arrangement for a track.

The tabs along the bottom allow you to play in midi parts on your ipad, do some quick sound designing for your midi tracks, edit your audio and midi loops and pull up a quick mix.

Jumping in and booting up the demo session was a super handy way to learn the workflow of Sketch, especially if you’re a do or die Pro Tools user and you’re not familiar with a nonlinear workflow.

I’ve never been a massive user of any loop block based music software. I’ve always found myself favouring more old school, linear songwriting in my DAW. But this has caught my attention, I really enjoyed building up a demo using Sketch.


I think this is largely due to how tight the interface is for audio and midi editing is in the editor tab. Making your audio or midi to conform to the loop length you’re after is super easy which keeps you in the creative flow.

I can’t imagine myself creating final productions using Sketch, but hey it’s called Sketch, I don’t think they’re expecting that of it. This is a tool for quickly jotting down ideas and easily organising arrangements.

If you’re also a regular Pro Tools user, you can easily transfer your sketch sessions into a Pro Tools project and it’s as simple as just dragging over individual loops, whole sections or an entire arrangement.

If you’re keen to learn more check out the Pro Tools website:


Or just head on over to the app store and give it a go for yourself, it’s free!