After Yesterdays AES announcement of the coming update to Pro Tools 12.3 and one of the main new features being "Commit" it would be quite understandable for anyone to confuse the concept with that of "Freeze".
Freeze is something has been around for a long time in other DAW's and has been a bug bear for equally long as to why it is still not a part of Pro Tools. Yesterdays announcement also stated that Freeze would be along soon too, so Why the "Commit" feature AND "Freeze" ?
First if you need to know what "Commit" is check out yesterdays "Whats New in Pro Tools 12.3" release video[embedyt] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SN4nji4XetY[/embedyt]
Ok so what is Freeze?
Now that we are clear on what "Commit" does lets look back to NAB 2014 where Avid were demo'ing a tech preview of their upcoming cloud collaboration features which included the illusive "Freeze" functionality.
A full story report of the tech preview and its features courtesy of Protootr.com can be found here but suffice to say that Freeze gives users the ability to render audio tracks containing plugin inserts or Virtual instrument tracks into a new audio file rather like a bounce or commit but the beauty is that the session could then be sent to another user/collaborator who - if they happen to own the same plugins used in the pre frozen project could then choose to "un-freeze" items and adjust or change those instruments or plugins OR if the recipient didn't happen to own those plugin could participate and do their part of the project while still hearing what the original producer heard, finish up and send it back to the originator who could then choose to Un-freeze and continue to work as before.
A knock on effect to this (and the reason Freeze was first introduced in other DAW's) is the CPU and Memory load being consumed by the plugins can be saved by Freezing but also giving you the flexibility to return to those tracks and instruments later if needs be.
Commit is quite literally that - A commitment, where-as Freeze leaves you open to further manipulation later while in the meantime saving power and being able to share what you are hearing with other collaborators.
An important difference to note is that Commit-ed items become regular audio clips just like any other audio on the timeline and thus of course can be edited just like regular audio clips, However Frozen items cannot be edited and manipulated like audio so you'd need to choose your tools carefully for the job in hand.
Also You'll be able to choose where in the insert chain the Freeze happens allowing you to leave other plugins in the chain open to manipulation (Source: Avid's Tom Graham on the Avid DUC forum)
Of course there are quite probably many other situations where one would be more useful over another so please tell us where you think these can be useful in the comment section below and maybe since 2014 NAB Avid have expanded into some far more useful instances or ways that Freeze and Commit differ but hopefully its clear now that Commit is not Freeze.