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Manchester Based Audio Studio. Sound Design | Voice Over/ADR | Foley | 5.1 Mixing | Pro Tools | Education | Sound Effects Libraries
Manchester Based Audio Studio. Sound Design | Voice Over/ADR | Foley | 5.1 Mixing | Pro Tools | Education | Sound Effects Libraries

ARTICLE: Pro Tools New Dark UI Theme - Friend Or Foe?

Welcome back to the 344 Audio Blog. This week we are taking a look at the new dark UI theme that has been added to Pro Tools in the latest update.

The addition of a Dark UI marks the first time that any significant aesthetic changes have been brought in with a new Pro Tools update. Other DAWs such as Logic and Ableton have had this option of light and dark themes for a while, so perhaps this addition was seen as a way to bring Pro Tools in line with these other programs.

The new dark theme is very easy on the eyes and will surely be welcomed as a positive addition by large portions of the user base. It's good to see AVID giving the users more control over their own experience and this addition could lead to similar features being implemented if it is well-received.

How to change to Dark Mode

Changing between the classic and dark themes couldn't be easier. Once you have downloaded Pro Tools 2020.11, and opened a session, simply go to your preferences > display > UI Theme. Then you can choose between a 'classic' and 'dark' mode in the drop-down menu.

Switching UI themes will require a restart of pro tools so just keep that in mind when you are making the switch.

You can find a more in-depth guide in this video from AVID.


The dark theme is much softer on the eyes, making it better for longer sessions, working in low light studios, or conducting late-night work/ remote sessions with artists in different time zones.

The sleek and modern aesthetic may help session navigation and make certain panels and menus stand out more. The dark theme may be more familiar to users of other DAWs such as Logic or Reaper, and encourage these users to work inside Pro Tools.


Having to restart Pro Tools each time you switch between themes is quite frustrating, and will certainly irritate a lot of users. Perhaps in future updates, AVID may remedy this but for now, we will be stuck with having to restart each time.

Another potential issue with the new theme is how accessible it is to users with colour blindness, and whether the dark theme will help or hinder those users.


In our humble opinion, the new dark theme looks great and is certainly a welcome addition to Pro Tools. Any additions that give the user more control over their experience is always a win in our eyes, so we hope this may lead to similar additions in future updates.

You can find a full breakdown of all the new Pro Tools additions via this link below:

We hope you enjoyed checking out this article!


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