Aaaron.protools is a completely different animal than media encoder. it's used on just about every record made since the 90s. also probably was used in the post-production of every movie since then as well...
also, how's final cut X treating you?
Reel-to-reel has been used far more than Pro Tools. Therefore it must be even better, right?
Personal preference aside, the only argument for Pro Tools I can see is that if you want to work in "the industry," it is beneficial to use whatever software more professional houses are using. But at this point all the big DAWs are more or less equally capable, and the "right" one for personal use comes down to whichever workflow a person finds most intuitive.
I'm not saying Avid/Pro Tools is crap. What I'm saying is that at least in the video industry people are slowly starting to realize that the "it's what has always been used" argument is a bunch of B.S., and instead are exploiting new tools that suit their needs. There is more diversity. I personally hate FCX but I'm glad that people who are good with it aren't so desperate to fit in anymore (a rarity in the video world).
Personally, I think Reaper is the best DAW for someone dipping their toes in the water. A license is only $50, and they don't even enforce it. It handles basic tasks better than any DAW I've used, which is good because the last thing a newbie wants to do is spend time reading the manual on how to bounce takes (looking at you, Ableton) when they can simply drag and drop and get on with their day. Then once they get an idea of their workflow idiosyncrasies, they can made the educated decision as to which DAW best suits their personal work style. And it isn't necessarily any specific one.