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Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions

COW Library : Adobe Premiere Pro : David Lawrence : Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
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CreativeCOW presents Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions -- Adobe Premiere Pro Editorial


www.propaganda.com
San Francisco Califorina USA

©2012 CreativeCOW.net. All rights reserved.


As a long-time Final Cut Pro user, David Lawrence has been looking for a new NLE, since FCPX isn't an option for his editing style and needs. When word leaked out of a CS6 trial release, David took Premiere Pro 6 for a spin. And WOW! is what his impressions were. Read on for more details.



Like many of you, I've been itching to get my hands on Adobe Premiere Pro CS 6.0 ever since Adobe's official announcement and demo videos. As a long-time Final Cut Pro user, NLE change has been a given ever since the Final Cut Studio EOL last June. The big question has been "change to what?"

I've written extensively about the Final Cut Pro X timeline and why it's not right for my style of editing. Since FCPX isn't an option for me, I've spent all year watching and waiting to see what other NLE vendors might come up with.

The buzz on Premiere Pro 6 was growing months leading up to NAB. Conan O'Brien's boys stoked the fires with a viral promo teasing a fresh new interface, solid professional workflow, and easy Final Cut Pro transition. When Adobe finally showed their cards at NAB, I felt comfortable enough to tell my partners to pull the trigger on a couple Master Collection upgrades. I bought a new Production Bundle seat for myself as well.

We could have waited since FCP7 still works for us. But Adobe's upgrade prices were great and we knew we'd want CS6 anyway. Besides, sooner or later FCP7 was bound to break, so I figured it would be good to start transition as soon as practical and get it over with. And the signs were good - it looked like Adobe had addressed the complaints many folks had with Premiere Pro 5.5. But hype and flashy demos aside, this was still a leap of faith. As a Final Cut Pro user, I really didn't know what to expect.

So when word went out of a leaked CS6 trial release available from a secret Adobe URL, I jumped at the chance to take Premiere Pro 6 for a spin. Would it live up to the hype? More importantly, would it live up to my particular workflow expectations and needs?

The short answer is yes. Yes it would indeed.

So much so that when Tim Wilson asked the COW FCPX or Not Debate forum "What are you thinking about CS6?", this was my answer.

Tim asked me if I'd like to say more about my impressions and that's what I'm going to do in this article. But before I start, I want to be clear about where I'm coming from:

First off, I have no affiliation with Adobe. I'm speaking strictly for myself.

Second, I'm not a Premiere Pro expert, not even close. See this box?



This is my Premiere 3 box. From 1993. That was the last time I worked with Premiere. Yeah, it's been a while.


Third, I'm not going to discuss advanced workflows - no 3rd party display hardware, no multicam, no exchange with other programs, no collaboration, no tape I/O. You'll want to hear about that from the people who need to use those features every day.

Fourth, since I played with a prerelease, the help/user manuals were not yet online so I had to figure things out for myself. If I get anything wrong please let me know. I still have many questions and lots to learn.

Finally, I've only done a few tests on some short, simple projects. I have no idea how well Premiere Pro 6 handles scale or where the sharks are hiding.

For this article, I'm focusing on the basics. Does it have the tools and methods I depend on to work efficiently? Is it intuitive? Does it make sense? Is it easy to learn? How does it feel? And most important, will my partners and I feel at home here, after ten years working exclusively in Final Cut Pro?


MY SETUP

My machine is a 15" late 2008 Unibody MacBook Pro. It's a CTO 2.8GHz Core 2 Duo, maxed out with 8GB RAM.

My storage is a mix of GRaid drives and Voyager/Thermaltake docks for bare 3.5" SATA drives. These attach to the laptop via Sonnet ExpressCard eSATA adaptor going into a eSATA 5-port multiplier. I also have a ReadyNAS Pro RAID-5 connected via gigabit Ethernet and networked with my partners in LA.

I normally work with my laptop in clamshell mode on a shelf under my desk connected to a 24" Apple LED display.

I'm basically a one-man-band operation, but often remotely collaborate.


FORMATS

My source formats are usually AVCHD or H.264, transcoded to ProRes 422 with Magic Bullet Grinder. I also work with XDCAM EX. Resolution/frame rate is usually 1080p24 or 30. Occasionally 1080i60 with XDCAM. We used to do a lot of work with HDV but it's rare these days.

These formats perform well in Final Cut Pro 7 and I have no problem editing quickly and efficiently. But my laptop is beginning to show its age - especially working with DSLR native formats like AVCHD or H.264, or timelines with mixed format media, or with any effects that need rendering.


XML TRANSFER

For my tests, I exported a couple typical FCP7 projects in XML to see how Premiere Pro 6 would deal with the translation and to have something to play with.

Translation was very good but not perfect. Be prepared to do some work to get your sequences back in order. The good news is that all structural info translated perfectly. This includes all bins, clips and sequence structures. Simple transitions and time remapping translated perfectly as well, except for still frames. Sequence elements that didn't translate were the things you might expect - FCP7 specific plug-ins, effects, transitions and generators. Premiere Pro 6 substitutes these with a dissolve (or your default transition) and creates a full translation report noting whatever didn't translate.



Premiere Pro 6 using the old CS5.5 editing layout (footage courtesy Public Matters LLC, http://www.publicmattersgroup.com) Click image for larger view.


OVERALL UI DESIGN

Premiere Pro 6 is built around traditional NLE interface conventions - track-based editing with source/program viewers and media organization via projects, bins and sequences.

Users of the CS family of applications - especially After Effects 5.5 - will instantly feel at home. Adobe's given Premiere Pro 6 the same dark, clean, uncluttered front end. In fact, switching back and forth between AE 5.5 and PP6 feels like going between sections of the same program.

As you'd expect, workspace layouts are fully customizable and savable with tabbed panels for quick and flexible access. You can also customize panel buttons to make your control surfaces as featured or minimal as you like.



Premiere Pro 6 Project Panel with large thumbnail view. Note the persistent In/Out range marked in orange.


PROJECT PANEL

Project assets (bins, clips, sequences, and other media assets) all live in the project panel. It displays in standard list view and thumbnail view. But Adobe's given thumbnail view a sweet new twist. First, thumbnails can be big. Really big. The more space you give the panel, the bigger thumbnails get at maximum scale. You can make them almost as big as your source/program viewers if you have the monitor space.

Second, if you like skimming in FCPX, you'll be glad to know Premiere Pro 6 has it too. Adobe calls it Hover Scrub - wave your mouse over the thumbnail and skim. When you see something you like, click on the thumbnail and use the JKL keys to play. You can also set persistent In/Out marks with the I/O keys. And you can edit the marked clip onto the timeline either by dragging or with the keyboard.

In effect, Adobe's thumbnails are almost like mini source viewers. It's very useful.


THE TIMELINE

The Premiere Pro 6 timeline is completely familiar, especially for Final Cut Pro users. No retraining necessary. It's a standard open timeline with video tracks above, audio below.

One nice similarity to Final Cut Pro 7 is the treatment of empty space or gaps. Avid Media Composer users are familiar with the concept of filler. These are transparent objects that fill negative space between media on the Avid timeline. FCPX fills empty timeline space with transparent gap bubbles. But the Final Cut Pro 7 and Premiere Pro 6 timelines use what I've always felt is the more elegant solution.



Gaps done properly. Note how rubber band selection with a mouse only selects media objects. [Editor's note: This image has been cropped to fit. Please click on image to expand to larger view and full-sized image.]


Gaps between clips are simply empty space. No objects needed. At the same time, empty space is click selectable, deletable, and can set the head or tail of a transition. This makes for a cleaner looking timeline since the only objects are always media. And if you like using the mouse to drag select clips, you never have to worry about selecting a gap by mistake.



Premiere Pro 6 timeline keyframing. All keyframable parameters are available from the drop-down menu on the clip.


TIMELINE KEYFRAMING

Both Final Cut Pro 7 and Premiere Pro 6 use clip-based keyframing with the key frame editor directly on the clip. Audio key frames affect clip volume. And like FCP7, Premiere Pro 6 has default video keyframes that affect opacity. But Premiere Pro 6 also adds a drop-down menu allowing selection of any of the keyframable parameters associated with the video clip, including effect parameters. This makes all video keyframing easier to manipulate in context.



Premiere Pro 6 effect controls panel - similar to the effect controls in After Effects.


If you need greater precision, double click the video clip and open the Effect Controls tab in the source panel. The Effect Controls will be familiar to any After Effects user and work in a similar way. Keyframable parameter values are on the left with a time indicator ganged to the clip and timeline on the right.



Premiere Pro 6 outline view in the Program Panel. The frame can be directly manipulated as in Final Cut Pro 7.


For motion parameters, Premiere Pro 6 again borrows the best of Final Cut Pro 7. Double clicking in the Program viewer reveals an outline frame with handles, making it possible to set motion keyframes by directly manipulating the program frame.

Together, these Premiere Pro 6 timeline keyframe features make simple track-based compositing and motion effects - one of my favorite techniques and one of Final Cut Pro 7's greatest strengths - better than ever.


TRIM TOOLS

Ask any Avid editor what their favorite thing about Media Composer is and you'll likely get the same answer - the trim tools. I'm often told that Avid's keyboard-driven "rock and roll" trimming features are considered the gold standard in the editing world, especially for narrative. But editors more accustomed to trimming with the mouse often find these tools challenging to learn. Avid's introduction of the mouse-driven Smart Tool in MC 5.0 was controversial, with some Avid editors objecting to what they saw as an unnecessary interface change to accommodate mouse users.



Cursor contextually set to Rolling Edit Tool. Rolling edit set up on timeline. Note clip info pop-up which appears after a brief delay when cursor is still. Click on image for larger view.


With Premiere Pro 6, Adobe has done their homework and given us the best of both worlds. All trim functions are literally at your fingertips. The keyboard trim commands rival Media Composer's flexibility and precision, and include the prized, real-time "rock and roll" trimming Avid editors enjoy.



Double clicking the transition brings a context aware display into the Program viewer -- two-up for overwrite, ripple and roll. The display is four-up when using the slip and slide tool. Click on image for larger view.


Final Cut Pro editors more used to the mouse will be comfortable as well. Adobe's default selection tool is context sensitive, automatically showing the right or left overwrite trim cursor while hovering over a transition. Modifier keys switch the cursor to ripple or roll. It's visually clear, intuitive and instantly learnable.

Another nice feature are the discreet tool tips at the bottom left of the Premiere Pro window. This is a status bar that describes the actions of the current cursor and suggests any optional modifier keys.

It's no exaggeration to say that with Premiere Pro 6, Adobe's NLE trim tools now rival the best in the industry. Great job, Adobe!


AUDIO

Premiere Pro 6 addresses one of the biggest complaints of Premiere Pro 5.5 users by introducing flexible audio tracks. In the past, changing track types - for example from stereo to mono - was cumbersome. In Premiere Pro 6, the process is easier and more flexible. Additionally, the new standard audio tracks are format agnostic, letting you place both stereo and mono audio objects on the same single track.



Stereo and mono audio clips, both on audio track 3. Note sync markers indicating a 19-frame sync slip on Clip #3. Click on image for larger view.


Premiere Pro 6 has a full-featured audio mixer panel with busing and effect inserts for VST plugins. Faders can be used to write automation in real-time. Currently, mixer automation is track-based only, meaning it won't stick to your clips if you move them on the timeline. Audio experts make a good point in saying track-based automation is much more useful with a way to attach it to clips. Hopefully we'll see this in a future release.



Premiere Pro Audio Mixer with submix pulldown. Click on image for larger view.


BUILT-IN EFFECTS AND TITLING

Premiere Pro 6 includes basic effects and transitions for audio and video, but this is one area where I missed Final Cut Pro 7. FCP7 comes with a much more comprehensive set right in the box, and over the years I've built a valuable plug-in collection from Final Cut Pro only vendors like Digital Heaven. Hopefully Adobe and/or third-party vendors will fill the gaps soon.

Two effects worth noting are the three-way color corrector and the keyer. Both produce very high quality results with flexible, fully keyframable controls. They were a pleasure to use.



Premiere Pro Three-way Color Corrector. All parameters can be keyframed.


Premiere Pro's three-way looks and works more like Colorista than FCP7's. XML translation from FCP7 worked pretty well, especially given the differences in parameter design. The biggest three-way problem was highlight input levels translating 50% too low. Raising the value from 128 to 255 made things look good - not exactly matching FCP7, but acceptably close.



Premiere Pro Title Generator - window and tools. Click on image for larger view.


The built-in title generator is solid but basic. While good for simple titles, it currently works inside a modal window and doesn't allow keyframed parameters. Again, this is something Adobe or third-parties will hopefully address.


PERFORMANCE

Wow.

Let me say that again.

Wow.

Running Premiere Pro 6 was like working with a new computer. Seriously. The UI is snappy and responsive, instantly keeping up with every move. Everything about it feels tight and precise, like a well-crafted tool feels in the hand.

Then there's playback. It's important to understand how Adobe approaches playback, rendering and output, as it's different than Apple's approach in Final Cut Pro 7. Adobe prioritizes real-time playback during editing, transparently doing whatever's needed to keep playback as smooth as possible the entire time. Rendering is usually unnecessary to see effects or transitions. Add an effect and see results instantly. The idea is to keep working in real-time and only render at maximum quality at the very end, targeting your desired output format. It's a similar approach to the way After Effects works - you send your comp to the queue for final output only after you've finished building.

The practical result is that anything you throw on the timeline plays back in real-time.

It doesn't matter if media matches the sequence settings. It doesn't matter if it has a bunch of effects. It doesn't matter if it's rendered or not.

It. Just. Plays.

The Premiere Pro timeline is the honey badger of timelines.

I tried some edit-friendly formats like ProRes and XDCAM EX, as well as native formats like H.264. Premiere Pro cut them all like butter.

So for grins, I thought I'd try something a bit more challenging. How about some RED 4K on a firewire 800 drive?



Premiere Pro 6's new default 2-up editing layout with 4K R3D timeline (footage from the feature film HEATHENS & THIEVES, planned release Summer 2012, courtesy Orofino LLC, http://heathensandthieves.com). Click on image for larger view.


I made a new project and imported a few 4K R3D files. Dropped them on the timeline and hit play. Zero dropped frames at 1/16 playback resolution. I then cut a 4K R3D scene with full-motion playback on my four-year-old laptop. Keep in mind this laptop is so old I don't get any benefits of GPU acceleration. And the footage is on a relatively slow firewire 800 drive. Premiere Pro 6 and my laptop played it back without breaking a sweat.



4K R3D playback at 1/16 resolution on a 15" late 2008 MacBook Pro 2.8 GHz Core 2 Duo. Note CPU usage meter in upper right corner reading less than 50% and green dropped frame indicator at lower left showing zero dropped frames. Click on image for larger view.


Did I say wow? More like mind blown.

Premiere Pro users have long raved about the 64-bit performance of Adobe's Mercury Playback Engine, but as a Final Cut Pro 7 user experiencing it for the first time, I can't help but be impressed. This is some deep and highly optimized engineering. You can feel it under the hood. This program is tight.


CONCLUSION

So, is that joke about Premiere Pro 6 being Final Cut Pro 8 true? You could say yes and you could say no. Yes, Adobe borrowed many of Final Cut Pro 7's best features and brought them to Premiere Pro 6, often making them better. As a Final Cut Pro user, I feel comfortable and enjoy the improvements.

But Adobe also paid attention to the good parts of other NLEs as well. On top of that, Adobe clearly has their own vision for the future of media production workflow. This includes integration with their CS6 Production Bundle and an entirely different philosophy on render management and output. These are just some of the changes Final Cut Pro users will need to adjust to. But these adjustments are minor compared to completely relearning how to edit.

Is Premiere Pro 6 Adobe's Final Cut Pro 8? If you ask me, the answer is no. It's something different and potentially better. Is there room for improvement? You bet. If you miss certain features, let 'em know. They're listening.

Who's it for? If you already use Adobe's CS Master Collection and plan to upgrade, you already have it. If After Effects is part of your pipeline, it's a no brainer. You'll want it for Dynamic Link. If you work in Avid Media Composer, it's worth your time too. Set up the Premiere Pro keyboard like your Avid and you're good to go.

Make no mistake about it. Premiere Pro 6 is a game changing release in the NLE market.

Adobe has yet to prove itself in high-end collaborative production environments, the demanding workflows of broadcast and feature film where Avid remains king. But I have no doubt this world is firmly in their sights. With Premiere Pro 6, Adobe is well positioned to become the NLE market leader.

Finally, I'm confident in Adobe because of Adobe's unprecedented transparency and open communication. I can't think of another technology company of this size and reach where the actual managers directly involved in product development - guys like Dennis Radeke, Dave McGavran, and Todd Kopriva - actively and publicly converse with their customers, answering questions and asking for feedback on a regular basis. By openly communicating, respecting my professional expertise and listening to my professional needs, Adobe has earned my business and my trust.

I've barely had time to scratch the surface of this program. I'm looking forward to hearing from experts and learning more. I'm prepared for bugs, workflow changes, and things I'm sure I'll miss at first. But with Premiere Pro 6, I feel like I've tasted a bit of the future. And this is a future I can use right now, today; not years from now. I can't wait to get started.

Thanks Adobe, for delivering the goods. After ten years of Final Cut Pro, looks like this editor has found a new home. I think I'm gonna like it.









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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by John Mitchell
With AE being my main compositing engine it is tempting to switch (use both FCP 7 and AMC) but in V5 I still found some things clunky - particularly media management and the scaling engine was substandard. Have they improved those?

Of course historically FinalCut stole nearly the whole of the Premiere interface, so Premiere including FCP features is a nice reversal.

Couple of interesting notes - Avid's filler concept is really just empty space? you can drag clips apart without using filler...the only downside is you can't have "empty space" at the end of a timeline. (least not without some tinkering with markers)

Still prefer Avid's original title tool to everyone else's - simplicity itself (sort of like the Photoshop text tool, per character kerning, leading etc) and if you need something more complex you have Marquee.

It looks like Avid's RT playback and Adobe's are now at least on a par with the Mercury engine on qualified systems providing superior performance.

+1
@John Mitchell
by Walter Soyka
[John Mitchell] "in V5 I still found some things clunky - particularly media management and the scaling engine was substandard. Have they improved those?"

Media management? No.

Scaling? That's more complicated. CS5 introduced GPU-accelerated Lanczos scaling. If you are using software-only Mercury, then you were stuck with bicubic scaling as your highest-quality option.

See here fore more:
http://blogs.adobe.com/premiereprotraining/2010/10/scaling-in-premiere-pro-...

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by larry towers
"Audio experts make a good point in saying track-based automation is much more useful with a way to attach it to clips."

HUh? What audio experts are you talking to? An audio expert would recognize that the perceived level of an audio clip is directly related to whatever sounds are surrounding it. Clip based automation is only useful if the surrounding audio is the same. How likely is that?
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Jarle Leirpoll
Nice article.

I find it amusing that FCP users talk about what they didn't like in Premiere Pro CS4, 5 and 5.5.

CS6 is out, folks - and it's a whole different animal! Of course it's running circles around FCP7. That's to be expected, since FCP7 is an old piece of 32-bit software. FCPX is the current software from Apple that we should be comparing it against. The performance of Premiere Pro CS6 is very good. Extremely good! And the Open Timeline is familiar to all of us.

A few things need to be set right here:

1: There are HEAPS of plug-ins for Premiere Pro, but most people don't realize it. Most plug-ins for After Effects work in Premiere Pro. And we all know there are a LOT of plug-ins for AE. Pick your choice.

2: Premiere Pro does NOT always recompress. Actually it does Smart Rendering with DV formats and Uncompressed video, and has done so for a while. Yeah, I know these are kind of special cases - but it IS Smart Rendering. And who knows what other formats it can Smart Render in the next version? Push your feature requests! What it can't do is make a QuickTime Reference video - that's a QT thing.

3: There are so many ways to customize the keyboard shortcuts that I've found absolutely nothing that I can't use shortcuts for in my workflow. But of course, I never had the urge to have different transition times available as shortcuts, and I don't think I ever will. As for adding a 30 frames fade up/down at the start/end, I would use an Opacity Preset for that. But that's me.

Tip: You MUST add shortcuts for "Ripple Trim Previous/Next Edit to Playhead". These enable you to do Top-n-Tail editing, and there's simply no quicker way to do a rough cut. For the fine cut, use the keyboard shortcuts to tune your edits with precision. Or use the Dynamic Trim. WOW. Just WOW!

Premiere Pro CS6 is by far the best NLE I've ever used, and if you're using Photoshop and After Effects, the integration saves you a lot of time while at the same time keeping the highest possible quality.

Don't like it? Don't use it. That's good for me, because I can finish my edits quicker than you, and deliver better quality. Your loss. :-)

OK, I'm highly biased:
http://www.premierepro.net
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Mark Hollander
Tom makes some very good points regarding export times. With FCP7 at the end of the edit, I can export with current settings (ProRes) and a few seconds later the clip is made. For me exporting quickly is much more important than importing quickly. A quick export enables me to make minor (inevitable client changes) and re-export in a heart-beat. Especially on graphics heavy jobs or long format weddings. I like the PremPro ability to view MTS and M2T files instantly but the encode at the end is just unusable, if like me, you have clients previewing the edit remotely, via ftp. Either way we are going to start moving to PremPro gradually over the next year. Coming back to After Effects after 10 years is kind of nice, it leaves Motion and Livetype in the dust. I like the ability of After Effects to export ProRes, which Livetype could not do. CHEERS. Mark

"It beats working for a living"
+1
Re: Article: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Dennis Radeke
Ladies and Gents,

Sometimes threads get too long for me to easily find out if there are any questions. If you have one for me, please reply to this post and I'll do what I can.

Cheers,
Dennis - Adobe
Re: Article: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
Only downside of premiere from my first impressions is their scopes. Avid has the same deal. FCP 7s scopes looked like real Tektronix scopes - the ones in Premiere and Avid are hokey. Can you respond to this - are there plans to make these look like real scopes?

@Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
by Dennis Radeke
Scopes is something we're looking at now again as we continue to move more into the high-end space. The challenge is that most pros don't consider software scopes accurate enough to be used.

Thanks,
Denni
@Dennis Radeke
by Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
I understand where you are coming from but I know many (even those who wouldn't admit it) who use the scopes and being able to read them is key.

@Dennis Radeke
by David Lawrence
Hi Dennis,

I think it's interesting that a large focus of this thread is on the differences in Adobe's approach to transcode/render/output workflow. Jeremy Garchow wrote a nice summary here:

http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/335/33770

For anyone seeing this on the Premiere Pro forum, I recommend reading that entire thread as it has lots of interesting info.

Technical issues regarding Adobe's approach have been been well covered (32-bit QuickTime, no smart rendering, etc.) and Richard Harrington's summary of import vs. export tax is clear.

But I have to agree with Tom D. about the real-world impact. My typical workflow is to get cards from the DP at the end of the day, transcode at night while everyone's asleep, then start post fresh in the morning with edit-friendly ProRes.

My clients understand the concept of "shoot-day" and "post day" being separate. Since the import tax is paid during off hours, it's essentially invisible to our production schedule.

Like most FCP7 users, I'm used to distributing the render tax throughout post, minimizing its overall impact. I take fast output at the end for granted and often depend on it for versioning and last minute changes. My expectations are very different than when I'm working in After Effects.

The other new reality for a lot of us is that any time-savings up front doesn't automatically get added back to the end. Often it simply goes away. The schedule just gets even more compressed.

My question to you and the Adobe guys as well as everyone else reading this thread is what are your suggested workflows for minimizing the output tax? Are there preferred codecs if working native is not a priority? Unchecking Use "Maximum Render Quality" seems to help. What about preview renders?

Any advice for folks like myself who are new to Adobe's approach to media handling? I think this is the biggest change we will need to adjust to in Premiere Pro.

Thanks!

_______________________
David Lawrence
art~media~design~research
propaganda.com
publicmattersgroup.com
facebook.com/dlawrence
twitter.com/dhl
+1
@David Lawrence
by Dennis Radeke
Hi David,

Thanks for the post and interaction. Clearly, there are a bunch of ways that you can answer your question. First, I'd say there are times when you can consider doing a transcode to a common codec on ingest preserving the 'import tax' and perhaps deferring some of your render tax down the road. I would advocate a transcode only if you have a system isn't super beefy and you're shooting something highly temporal like AVCHD, H264 and the like.

I think that distributing the 'render tax' is pretty easy with Premiere Pro because we try to give users a no-need-to-render situation whenever they're editing. There are moving parts to this and a GPU card is pretty important on an effects heavy job, but in principle, that's always our goal.

That pushes most rendering to your 'output tax.' There's no way to get around final deliverables and while Adobe Media Encoder is 64-bit and works in the background, there's still some time involved!

Adobe Premiere Pro and AME do have Smart Rendering for certain codecs, most notably OP1a MXF, but it's not necessarily faster than doing a full render which is what most people want to get out of Smart Rendering. We are looking into what else we can add here for the future.

Todd Kopriva can correct me if I'm wrong here, but you can use Preview files in your final render but you need to check the 'use preview' option in AME
http://help.adobe.com/en_US/premierepro/cs/using/WS1c9bc5c2e465a58a91cf0b10...

Beyond that, just having a good system is really the best approach to improving any render times. I find RAM to be a good 'cure-all' to making things go faster. If you're less than 16GB of RAM on Production Premium CS6, I recommend that you run out and get some more memory!

Hopefully, some of the above makes sense and helps some people. Let me know if you have any other specific questions.

Dennis - Adobe guy
@Dennis Radeke
by Jarle Leirpoll
Dennis, I thought Smart Rendering for OP1a MXF was still a secret. :-)

Readers should note that this enables quicker and better quality exports for XDCAM HD or XDCAM EX sources if your output is OP1a MXF and no effects are added. This format is widely used by broadcasters, and the Smart Render for OP1a will make life easier when cutting news stories and other material with tight deadlines.
@Dennis Radeke
by David Lawrence
Hi Dennis,

Appreciate the reply and you and your team's active participation here in the forums.

Since ingest transcode is already part of my workflow, I'll experiment to see if this gives any leverage. I usually default to ProRes 422, but since this is 32-bit QuickTime, I'm curious if you or Todd world recommend a different codec for better performance.

I don't have any experience with OP1a MXF but it doesn't sound like much would be gained. What about DNxHD or XDCAM as a mastering format? Or am I basically limited by Quicktime on the Mac no matter what?

Smart Rending sounds like the ticket and I'm looking forward to seeing how this feature develops:

http://blogs.adobe.com/premiereprotraining/2012/05/adobe-media-encoder-cs6-...

Naturally, as a FCP user, I'd love to see smart rendering give us the same benefits we have with FCP.

I appreciate how faster, better hardware helps in current workflow scenarios. My laptop is maxed out at 8GB so maybe it's time for an upgrade. Still, I hope that hardware isn't the only answer here.

In the meantime, has anyone published a "best practices" workflow guide for optimizing output speed as well as quality?

Thanks again!

_______________________
David Lawrence
art~media~design~research
propaganda.com
publicmattersgroup.com
facebook.com/dlawrence
twitter.com/dhl
@Dennis Radeke
by Todd Kopriva
I don't have a specific recommendation for a codec to use if you choose to transcode before editing. Personally, I do my work with native/original media files and just render preview files for the occasional places where I need to (which seldom happens).

Separate from the question of what codec to transcode with before editing is the question of what codec to use for preview files:
I use the I-Frame Only MPEG option, but any codec that is fast to decode will do.

BTW, be careful about using your preview files for final output. Your final output should be using your delivery codec and at the highest possible quality, matching your various delivery specifications. It is very rare for those to align with what makes for a good preview file, which is all about speed.

Regarding smart rendering: Don't get confused about what this is.

(Yeah, I know that we haven't helped by not describing it much yet, but that will come very soon... as soon as some specific event which I can't actually tell you about, but here's a hint: Smart rendering in an AME update wouldn't be much good if we didn't add it to Premiere Pro, too.)

Anyway, about smart rendering: It is _only_ used and useful in the case where your source format and settings are exactly the same as your delivery/output format and settings. This is a somewhat common case for many broadcasters, who deliver edited output in their camera format, but it's not common for other workflows.

Smart rendering has nothing to do with using preview files on output.

The point of smart rendering is to pass media through unmolested and without requiring re-encoding when all that you've done is make a cuts-only edit.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
product manager, professional video software
After Effects team blog
Premiere Pro team blog
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
@David Lawrence
by Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
Can you explain what you mean by 32-bit quicktime?

@Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
by David Lawrence
QuickTime is an old 32-bit technology. This means that native data chunks are smaller and therefore slower to translate/process. This translates to slower performance in applications like Premiere.

_______________________
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@David Lawrence
by Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
I understand what 32-bit was although I believe you made my worst fears a reality - quicktime (Prores, DVCPro HD, etc) codecs on the mac are all 32 bit - not 64?!?!?!?!?!?!!

@Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
by David Lawrence
Well, I'm a bit out of my league here so maybe someone with deeper knowledge can chime in, But yes, that's how I understand it. I don't know where things are at with the transition to A/V foundation in Mac OS. A/V foundation is 64-bit.

_______________________
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@Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
by Dennis Radeke
Ian,

Premiere Pro is a 64-bit application and it's this more than anything else that has propelled Premiere Pro forward IMO. 64-bit apps make a HUGE HUGE difference.

When Premiere Pro has to incorporate a 32-bit piece to use codecs like Quicktime, it theoretically brings the performance of Premiere Pro down.

That's why for things like H.264 on the Mac, we worked around QT and edit H.264 without QT because it would KILL performance (like FCP7 with H.264).

Hope this helps,
Denni
@Dennis Radeke
by Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
Interesting - this might explain my issue with multiple streams of Prores or AVCIntra material not playing back in realtime.

@Dennis Radeke
by Dean Barrett
Hi Dennis,

I'm a young editor from South Africa, I work on FCP7 at work but have Premiere CS5 at home as I'm a PC user so naturally cannot use FCP.
I really enjoy the flexibility of Premiere. I have one, possibly very small and silly, question (that may even have been addressed in 5.5; I wouldn't know). The pasting of attributes in Premiere has always been something that bugged me in CS5. While I could REMOVE specific attributes from a picking window I could never ADD specific attributes, it would always paste all attributes from one clip to another.
Has this changed?
Also, so glad to hear the flexibility of mono and stereo audio channels has been improved - I am officially very excited for CS6!
@Dean Barrett
by Dennis Radeke
Hi Dean,

I think what you're talking about is the ability to 'paste attributes' in FCP from one clip to another. Right now, we do not have that in Premiere Pro CS6, but that's been a common feature request from FCP users. hopefully, we can get that in the next release, but honestly I don't know.

Dennis - Adobe
@Dennis Radeke
by Todd Kopriva
You can select only the attributes that you want, copy, and then paste. That accomplishes the same thing; you just are making a choice at a different (earlier) step.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Todd Kopriva, Adobe Systems Incorporated
product manager, professional video software
After Effects team blog
Premiere Pro team blog
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Roger Bolton
Hi, on the missing effects front I'd just like to point out that the CoreMelt V2 set of plugins is available on Premiere Pro (mac only). If you bought a license for FCP, then Premiere Pro support is free.

There will be some new announcements regarding PPro CS6 support coming soon from us. We're as excited about PPro CS6 potential as you are.

-
CoreMelt V2 plugins
@Roger Bolton
by David Lawrence
Hi Roger,

Good to know. I'm a big fan of Core Melt plugins from back when they were available in FXFactory. Will definitely check out V2.

_______________________
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Jim Giberti
Nice overview David, thanks.
What I like about this (and I go back to cutting our very first NLE on PP 1.0) is it's near convergence with FCP7 in a general sense.
A year from now many things (including the plug-in gap that's a big issue for me) will be evolved as will the road map for FCPX.
If I don't think X is the NLE for us at that time then stepping into PP 6 will be as simple as opening up one of our seats of Master Collection
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Terry Tsangaris
Excellent article David
I understand what FCP 7 users go through, I went through it 16 Years ago when DraCo nonlinear from Macro Systems, stop supporting us It cost me over $20,000.
I have been using Premiere since 2007 for Weddings and Music Videos. Formats used S-VHS before 1996,Mini DV,DVCAM, Currently HDV or AVCHD.
For over three years I have been working with 2 Mac-Pros 2x3.2gh Quad Xeon 8GB ram.I only use it for basic edit on FCP-7 my main role is dubbing to tape building DvD's through compressor and DvD studio and ingesting.
MAC is more stable and more responsive than WIN 7.
Yes PPro has come a long way and leapfrogged FCP 7,and I agree there are Apps that need more features to get the Pro title.
How can Adobe with it's Award winning Photoshop not implement it's Color Mastery into Premiere.
Render Speeds between FCP-7 vs CS5.5 with same video, CS5.5 is 3-times faster.
FCP-7 took 8 hours to encode 3 hours of AVCHD to Pro-ress.
CS5.5 encoded a Blu-Ray in encore from timeline Dynamic Link in a fraction over realtime.
My PC is already dated,with up to date SPECS this times can be halved.
Conclusion.
FCP-7 can still work for the wright environment,but if choose CS5.5 or 6 on MAC or PC Hardware compatibility is paramount.

Terry

CS5.5
I7 - 860 @ 2.80GHZ
8 GB DDR3
WIN-7 Ultimate 64-bit
@Terry Tsangari
by Pj Adamo
I don't know if any of you guys seen this, but it was a riot! FCP X actually made it to a network TV talk show!




Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Robert Reeves
I liked the info. I have checked out the videos on Lynda and I like what I see. I am also a FCP user for years, however I think what I have seen is Apple is more interested in selling consumer items. What I mean by that is you cant own a copy of FCP-X, you can only download from the app store. I may be old fashioned but I like holding in my hands what I have just bought, because I PAID for it (and dont tell me that I might lose it, thats a poor excuse). I need a professional video editing software, not a prosumer version because its cheap enough to sell to the mass's. I want a company that will listen and grow with me, Apple was that company but then changed direction. So Adobe is listening to this end of the market and I am glad they are. I am excited about being able to use my 8 core mac finally in editing and not just rendering in compressor. I have been holding off till 6 was released, I dont upgrade every version only every other. The last time I used Adobe was many moons ago, now I will be glad to use it once more. Way to go ADOBE, keep listening and you will win loyal professional users.
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Stephen Vidano
Pj Adamo...the problem is that "FCP X is broke." I wish it weren't. But I am intrigued by this David Lawrence post. I came from an AVID background...for 12 years. Then jumped to FCP because all of the editors I worked around didn't know AVID...and didn't want to spend the $ on it (years ago). So I made the leap and by remapping my keyboard it was fine.

But I'm most concerned about PP short cut keys...or lack of them. I want short cuts that cut my edit time in half or more. Some of those include adding 15 frame dissolves, or 30 frame dissolves onto the end of a clip with 1 keystroke. Saved in my favorites.

From what I understand PP doesn't have that yet. Which is still a big hindrance for me.

We'll see though...


Stephen Vidano
TuneSociety.com
"Set Your Music Free"
+1
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Cherniack
[Stephen Vidano] "But I'm most concerned about PP short cut keys...or lack of them. I want short cuts that cut my edit time in half or more. Some of those include adding 15 frame dissolves, or 30 frame dissolves onto the end of a clip with 1 keystroke. Saved in my favorites.

From what I understand PP doesn't have that yet. Which is still a big hindrance for me."


It does. Dissolves (video & audio) are default transitions. You can set their length in preferences or change them to any other transition. Plus you can trigger them with the key or key combination of your choosing.

David
AllinOneFilms.com
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Stephen Vidano
Yes! Thanks David. This makes me more excited to dive in. I use short cut keys for everything. And PP has not integrated those as much as AVID and FCP has in the past.


Stephen Vidano
TuneSociety.com
"Set Your Music Free"
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Cherniack
[Stephen Vidano] "I use short cut keys for everything. And PP has not integrated those as much as AVID and FCP has in the past."

They've really been stepping up their game with shortcut keys, especially with 6.0. Not nirvana quite yet but getting there.

David
AllinOneFilms.com
@David Cherniack
by Stephen Vidano
David, I just spoke to my buddy about your comment and his reply is the following...

"It has ONE shortcut key for a 'DEFAULT' transition. Period. That's it. Then, you have to edit the length of the dissolve AFTER you apply it.

Richard Harrington wrote a review on PP CS6 so I emailed him that very question. Here was his answer.

"Keyboard selection lots of options to customize. Presets yes for effects. Assignable no."

So, it appears you CAN have presets for your effects, but NOT assign keys to them yet. I'm hoping Adobe fixes that quick."

This is what is maddening to me about some of these programs "touting" that they are "professional" and can do everything the other programs can. They can't.

This type of stuff is a deal breaker for me because it means that productivity and speed is reduced by 50% or so...

I wish Adobe would address these shortcut issues. I hate having to go in and manually adjust "length of dissolve" and things like that when these things are totally do-able in one keystroke...quickly, and efficiently.

Bummer.


Stephen Vidano
TuneSociety.com
"Set Your Music Free"
Re: @David Cherniack
by David Cherniack
Stephen, sorry if I gave the wrong impression. The default transitions which you can set to any video and audio native transition, have keyboard shortcuts. I believe those shortcuts are assignable.

David
AllinOneFilms.com
Re: @David Cherniack
by Stephen Vidano
David, the bottom line is that I need to get my hands on 6.0. :) It seems that people are saying there are enough differences between 5.5 and 6 to make it worth while.

I'm looking forward to checking it out.

Thanks for your replies.


Stephen Vidano
TuneSociety.com
"Set Your Music Free"
@David Cherniack
by eddio pina
Adobe PP has shortcuts for every single tool, indeed yo press "C" for cut "X" for time remap. "V" for default mouse pointer.. and every tool you need to use. but you can do your own shortcuts too.

please visit the link for Adobe Help about Shortcuts

http://help.adobe.com/en_US/premierepro/cs/using/WS1c9bc5c2e465a58a91cf0b10...

Thank you
@Stephen Vidano
by Pj Adamo
You are 100% correct, that and the rendering issues.
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Pj Adamo
I don't understand this hype at all. Most of you are still using FCP 7 from what I am reading here, and some of you use Adobe. I have been using FCP since its beginning, I have set up FCP Studio 3 in a new iMac with raid and brought all my FX plugin's and programs over. I love Soundtrack Pro, the functionality of Live Type and all the neat tricks and skins you can make with those fonts. Why does everyone have to jump off FCP 7 just because Apple didn't come out with a true professional 64 bit program? Something wrong with FCP 7, did it catch a virus or bug? Clients don't care about your software; they care about time, money and the final (cut) output (hehe).

Heck, I still drive a classic car because it's cool to me and they just don't make ‘em like that anymore. If something’s not broke don't fix it and if it still makes you feel good no need to look elsewhere because you won’t find it too easily. Don’t be embarrassed to be a FCP 7 user or let NAB hype scare you into something drastic. When they come out with an editing program I can talk to like a smart phone and have it do the timeline edits for me, well, maybe then I will switch over. Till then I like what I use and use what I like. Anyone know where I can get factory seats for a 55 Chevy?
@Pj Adamo
by Palmer Woodrow
Maybe because the FCP UI sucks, and always has? Why would I want to work in an app that's a glued-together jigsaw puzzle of separate windows, in which you can't even tell what's selected? You can't minimize or move the UI. Closing a project inexplicably causes 2/3 of the UI to simply disappear.

Try figuring out what effects have been applied to a timeline event. They're hidden behind a viewer? Why?

Try reconnecting media that has moved or mysteriously gotten disconnected. That "reconnect" dialog is pathetic: First, it doesn't start in the directory where your media resides (or, if I remember correctly, even the last place you looked) and then it offers two buttons that inexplicably say "find" and "locate"? And this went unfixed year after year.

Never mind; revisiting this moribund application is just depressing. If you like it, go for it.
Re: @Pj Adamo
by Tangier Clarke
I will definitely download PrP , but if it's anything like FCP 7 in operation, I will stick with FCP X and FCP 7 for the meantime. I've been cutting with FCP X and love it, despite the growing pains. It is very different, but my productivity is light years ahead of FCP 7. Though FCP 7 is still may main workhorse, now when I go back to it from FCP X, it feels like a dinosaur. Once I wrapped my head around thy FCP X behaves the way it does, how its tied in to nice OS X technologies, how it leverages a database structure, metadata and how all of these components (along with plugins coming out so quickly) help me tell stories faster and manage my media better, I am confident the FCP X is my NLE of choice until and/or unless it completely fails.

Either way, i'll try out all of the new and updated apps. Getting to cut my first Red MX 4K project in X and highly looking forward to it. And for the record, I absolutely loath having to wait for transcoding on output as the primary method of exporting a la PrP. I am sure there are lots of features of PrP that I will really like though. FCP X may be a backwards step feature-wise as it needs to mature, but a huge forward step otherwise (opinion of course). Smoke's up next.

Competition is good for all of us!

Tangier
@Palmer Woodrow
by Pj Adamo
Funny, I don't have those issues with FCP 7, older versions yes, sometimes. You sound like a hater, possibly an Avid user? But then again it's always the lousy painter who blames the paintbrush and not his strokes.
@Pj Adamo
by Palmer Woodrow
So your copy of FCP 7 has an integrated UI, not a flotilla of separate windows? Your copy shows applied effects in a readily usable manner that doesn't require toggling the function of one of the viewers? Your "reconnect" dialog's buttons have different, meaningful labels and the displayed directory doesn't have you navigating your volume pointlessly? Yours has a different architecture, that keeps the difference between clips and timeline events clear? I don't think so.

Your response is a typical variation on killing the messenger. Don't blame me for impugning your pet product. I've used Edit, FCP, Vegas, Premiere, and Avid to complete projects. I've used FCP 7 the most. Right now I don't even own Avid. For my next project, the choice will be Premiere. So no, your hope for an easy denial didn't pan out.
@Palmer Woodrow
by Pj Adamo
I was editing when we had A,B,C roll. Were you even around when brocast video was analogue to tape? If you ever directed a live event with multiple cameras, then you would know the feel of multiple windows or monitors. Do you even edit with multiple monitors? I happen to like it.

If I don't change the file or project name, bam there it is. Ever try multiple drives, as one for capture one for audio, one for render and one for project backup? What you lost pertains to where you told it to save, a no brainer for most professionals.I know exactly where I save everything and so does the software.

FCP was a great program, so great it has been used by many Hollywood studios to cut blockbuster movies on. But I guess they navigated pointlessly during the edit and missed their premier date. This is my last post on this subject.
@Pj Adamo
by Palmer Woodrow
"Ever try multiple drives, as one for capture one for audio, one for render and one for project backup?"

Always.

"What you lost pertains to where you told it to save... I know exactly where I save everything and so does the software. "

If that were true, there'd be no need to reconnect, would there? Again, this doesn't hold up to rudimentary scrutiny. And the ridiculous strawman about "it's great because it was used to cut Hollywood movies" is just embarrassing at this point. For how many years did Apple crow about Cold Mountain being cut on FCP? You can cut a movie with a flipbook on 3 x 5 cards. It proves nothing.
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by aaron moore
As a longtime FCP and Avid user (mostly FCP). Premiere Pro was always kind of a joke. I recently did the portrait project for the RED user party at NAB this year. We had to stay in 4K the whole time and we had to use Adobe Premiere Pro. I had never used Premiere and wanted to hate it. I couldn't even find any one to ask questions. I didn't know anyone in Hollywood that even uses PP. So I jumped in cold. I was told that PP can handle R3D files raw. I couldn't believe how well it worked. Keep in mind, I was on a mac pro tower with a ton of horsepower and a RED Rocket card (not sure if that mattered). We shot on RED epic at 4K, cut and output 4k and never skipped a beat or slowed down. I was SUPER impressed with PP. I can't wait to dig into PP6. The most annoying thing was not being as fast as I am on FCP. little things like PP calling the "blade" the "razor". But those thing are easily fixed with more time. I also loved the title tool. Even though I was simple it was much better that FCPs title tool. I, like many others are not impressed with FCPX and don't have time to relearn how to edit. PP6 looks like a natural alternative.

Here is a link to our RED contest piece. Enjoy!

https://vimeo.com/40551043
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
Thanks for the link Aaron. Nice work, beautifully shot!

Re: PP calling the "blade" the "razor" - yeah, I prefer blade. That was the first keyboard shortcut I remapped.

_______________________
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by simon baker
Regarding final rendering, I feel Avid Liquid (now defunct) had a good system. It supported real-time preview from native media (except for high-end multiple effects), but you could also turn on "background" rendering which didn't interfere (usually) with your workflow, but continually rendered your timeline to a "preview" codec of your choice (further improving preview performance).

If your output codec matched your preview codec, it pretty much just copied the preview render data to your output file -- blazingly fast. There were times you might opt to turn off the background rendering for performance reasons, so it wasn't perfect --although the degree depended on your hardware. Maybe Adobe can adopt that model some day.

Off topic -- Avid Liquid also had "infinite undo" -- another mindboggling feature. To cap it off, it had the incredible "instant" save feature so you never lost work if your system crashed. I would like to know some day why it could not survive the marketplace.
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Ben Mason
Thank you David, enjoyed your article.

In fact it inspired me to export my current FCP edit as an XML and fire up PP5.5 to see if I was missing something.

All great until I tried to play the sequence - PP crashes whilst 'rendering required files', doesn't even say goodbye, just gone - and interestingly 'can't submit report to Apple at this time, please try later'

Have used PP5 and 5.5 intermittently over the past year on client's insistence and on various systems (top spec systems running Lion to 2 and 3 year old set-ups) and have always had issues.
These are mainly crashing, but also slow/laggy playhead - I want to see a clip instantly when I park the playhead - any lag becomes very tedious when working at speed.

Re: Export times
I have ported complex edits back to FCP for export due to horrendous export times.

Really want PP to work, would settle for less bells and whistles and a rock solid program.

Maybe PP6 is more solid - I will find out very soon, but until then it's still FCP7 for me.

Ben
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
[Ben Mason] "In fact it inspired me to export my current FCP edit as an XML and fire up PP5.5 to see if I was missing something.

All great until I tried to play the sequence - PP crashes whilst 'rendering required files', doesn't even say goodbye, just gone - and interestingly 'can't submit report to Apple at this time, please try later'"


I tried PP5.5 last year when Walter Biscardi wrote about moving to it. I wasn't impressed with the performance or UI. The difference with CS6 is night and day. Download the trial and give it a spin. You should have much better results.

_______________________
David Lawrence
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Chuck Stewart
David,
My MBP is the same as yours. Last year while rendering HD final output project on FCP7 the video chip on the logic board heated up and fried the chip. Sent it in to a place in CA only to have a rebuilt chip fry again. Under warranty, they put in a new logic board. I have SMC fan control that monitors board temp. When rendering an HD project the board heats up between 170-195°F. (I run the 2 fans at 4,000 + RPM.) Is this normal? I'm about to pull the trigger on the 27" iMac and CS6. Can this machine handle whatever I throw at it? Nice review on CS6.

ChuckE
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
[Chuck Stewart] "My MBP is the same as yours. Last year while rendering HD final output project on FCP7 the video chip on the logic board heated up and fried the chip. Sent it in to a place in CA only to have a rebuilt chip fry again. Under warranty, they put in a new logic board. I have SMC fan control that monitors board temp. When rendering an HD project the board heats up between 170-195°F. (I run the 2 fans at 4,000 + RPM.) Is this normal? I'm about to pull the trigger on the 27" iMac and CS6. Can this machine handle whatever I throw at it?"

170-195°F seems normal to me. I use my machine in clamshell mode with the GeForce 9600M GT and it usually is between 140-150°F for the main CPU when idle, but can go up to 205°F when rendering. Both fans are spinning at > 6,000 RPM most of the time.

As far as the iMac, the new ones look nice but whether they can handle anything I don't know. I'd think they would work well for regular HD.

_______________________
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Jon Davis
"Currently, mixer automation is track-based only, meaning it won't stick to your clips if you move them on the timeline. Audio experts make a good point in saying track-based automation is much more useful with a way to attach it to clips. Hopefully we'll see this in a future release."


On the contrary, unless something broke in PP6 (I only have v5.5 but v6 is on the way), any feature in Premiere Pro that is track-based can be made to be clip-based simply by right-clicking on the click and choosing "Nest". This gives the clip or selected set of clips their own Sequence, and within that sequence you can assign track-based properties. The nested sequence then becomes a clip in the original timeline. Move it around across tracks as you please! This is probably my favorite feature of Premiere Pro.

http://www.youtube.com/MrStimpy77
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Paul Carlin
When Premiere Pro 1.0 was released in 2003 it was very similair to what Apple has just done with FCP. They had re-written the source code from scratch and left out some very important features (Like EDL support). They even made the mistake of naming it the same and simply adding the word "Pro" to the end... as if to indicate that it can do more than edit weddings.

I'm very happy to see that nine years later they have acheived some great progress and most important, industry buzz. Adobe may finally get the respect they have always wanted. Imagine that one day people may actually purchase the Creative Suite because of Premiere Pro!
+1
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Michael Nielsen
In terms of utilizing the Mercury Engine for keying and the like, there is no wait since 5.0 IF you have a sweet cuda-card in your hardware setup. If so, there is no user-rendering necessary for the mercury-supported effects.

In terms of overall rendering - I have used PPro since 2004, the big let-down back then was that every piece of media had to be converted (peaked and conformed) and that took a lot out of the creative drive then and there, which in turn forced my hand over to FCP. Now, on a decent raid setup there is very little wait and only for file handling. I love the mercury engine.

On a side note - FCPx may not be what people wanted, but there are many genuinely new aspects of creative editing introduced and I for one enjoy FCPx, particularly for the background processes, freeing me from tedious click and render work. For the love of 250 bucks, it is what it´s supposed to be.

Im SO pumped for cs6 release.
Re: Article: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Christopher Lowden
Thanks for the very interesting article. Can PP6 edit from timeline to timeline without nesting like in avid / fcp? Currently apart from copy / pasting PP 5.5 cannot ( to my knowledge.)
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Ian Liuzzi-Fedun
Only downside of premiere from my first impressions is their scopes. Avid has the same deal. FCP 7s scopes looked like real Tektronix scopes - the ones in Premiere and Avid are hokey.

Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Tom Dowler
Great piece - just one annoying thing. You keep mentioning things that PPro has "borrowed from FCP7" - and in most cases, these things have been in PPro for many, many versions!

Really glad that the world at large seems to be waking up to the awesomeness of Adobe CS. Next everyone will realize editing on a PC is just as good and half the price of Mac....
+2
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
Thanks Tom, I haven't used it since 1993 so I really didn't know what it had. It's certainly gotten a lot better! ;)

_______________________
David Lawrence
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Brian Cooney
David, this is exciting! I've been waiting to see what FCPX is gooing to settle in and look like. I also have been a bit of an Apple snob and I'm sure that has contributed ot my disdain of Premiere. I do own CS5 however, using AE and PS and I'm anticipating going to Premiere from FCP7 if FCPX doesn't become more useful to me. But with so many 3rd party pluggins for FCP7 the thought of repurchasing is a real bummer. And.... I love Prores...But maybe the light is dawning from the darkness of this FCPX thang with the changes you've highlighted in Premiere and the changes that might be on the horizon.

Brian

MotionFoundry, Inc. Video Post
Clients: GM, AOL, Kohl's, 3 Doors Down, Thomas Nelson, NASCAR Affiliates
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
Brian,

Plug-ins and ProRes are two big things I depend on in my current FCP7 workflow. The other biggie is iChat Theater Preview. My partners in LA and I depend on that for remote collaborative edit sessions so giving it up will be a drag. Lots of workflow adjustments but the thing that matters most to me is that in PP6 I can edit the way I want to. Most of my creative energy revolves around the timeline and this is where PP6 makes me very happy.

BTW, I also used to have a hard time taking Premiere seriously. Used to joke with one colleague who used it about how he really needed to switch to a real NLE. Clearly a lot has changed in the last 20 years!

_______________________
David Lawrence
art~media~design~research
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Brad Neal
I have been using PrPro since its inception and have always thought it unfairly slighted by the pro editing community. That being said, the early efforts were a bit underwhelming in many areas. One of which remains today -that being the title generator. Still one of PrPro's weakest tool sets.

But as the author points out. There is a lot to LOVE about where Adobe is taking this product. I've worked with Avid and Final Cut, but never really found a compelling reason to switch.
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Justin Parker
Boris Red plug-in will take care of the more advanced transitional effects and titling in Premiere.
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by ronda birtha
Started using Premiere Pro 5.5 for the same reason as many others - FCPX was a big FAIL. However, I take extensive notes and missed (terribly missed) exported the batch lists. The batch lists factor greatly as part of my initial storyboarding.

Can CS6 export complete batch lists like FCP, (with log notes and description fields and all that nice stuff) or does it still just export clip name with in/out points?
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Robert Brown
It's possible that there's no perfect solution for this import export thing. But I will say this. I'm working on a project with TONS of MTS files. PPro 5.5 was doing terrible with it to the point where I thought I'd transcode everything and edit in FCP 7 or Avid. But there are 50 interviews with multiple cameras and some close to an hour. I have no idea how much space that would take as well as time to transcode to ProRes. I load it up in 6 and it plays perfectly. That's a huge saving of time and drive space not having to trancode.

I guess this might be a matter of client re-education which we all know can be slow and painful but it still does seem like there must be some sort of solution to pre-render stuff so it doesn't have to render EVERYTHING at the end. Hopefully Adobe can figure that out. Seems lie it would be a codec thing.

Robert Brown
Editor/VFX/Colorist - FCP, Smoke, Quantel Pablo, After Effects, 3DS MAX, Premiere Pro

http://vimeo.com/user3987510/videos
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Cherniack
I'm trying to wrap my head around the way you FCP guys are thinking about rendering, I suppose, in the same way that you're trying to figure out optimum workflows in PrPro. It seems as if there's some confusion around what needs to be rendered on output. That depends on which of the two kinds of output you're dealing with: file or tape.

If going to tape:
Nothing needs to be preview rendered that plays back in the timeline in real time: your compressed footage is decompressed, all real time effects are added at 32 bits and the output can't be more pristine. For clips that need to be rendered to previews you pick a codec and bit depth that's high enough to suit the clip, up to 10 bit uncompressed, and it plays out to tape in that quality with no added compression.

If going out to a file:
This is where I think most of the confusion arises. But basically the same signal that would play out to tape as uncompressed SDI is now recompressed into your output file's bit rate and depth. So to minimize degradation you pick those parameters at a bit rate and depth that's ideally higher than your timeline and previews codec. If you can pick uncompressed there's no recompression at all. But let's say for reasons of space, hardware, or delivery specs you can't do that. So just output a higher or at worst, equal, bit rate & depth. With today's quality codecs a decompression/recompression cycle at a high bit rate & depth is not going to produce any visible artefacts. The only issue is rendering time. That's why it's important to select a high bit rate & depth for your preview codec so you don't have to re-render all your effects heavy sections on output. And you probably won't have to render much of your timeline as previews if you are using CUDA effects. By following this workflow I've not seen an hour timeline that won't render out to a high quality file in more than a couple of hours. In fact I've often used that file to output to tape if I have a particularly complex timeline that I'm not confident will play out without dropping a frame. The only real render time issues arise if you don't have a beefy CPU and fast storage.

I hope this helps clear up any uncertainties.

David
AllinOneFilms.com
+1
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
[David Cherniack] "...But let's say for reasons of space, hardware, or delivery specs you can't do that. So just output a higher or at worst, equal, bit rate & depth. With today's quality codecs a decompression/recompression cycle at a high bit rate & depth is not going to produce any visible artefacts. The only issue is rendering time."

David, thanks for sharing your workflow. Can you comment on the Use Maximum Render Quality setting? When is it appropriate to use and when is it not? It adds a huge amount of time to the render. I did a couple tests with my 4K sequence and the difference was a factor of ten - 40 minutes vs 4 minutes. But when I compared the results, they looked so similar, I could barely tell the difference. Any thoughts?

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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Cherniack
The Maximum Render Quality switch is not supposed to add any quality difference if you're using CUDA effects. It's when you don't have a CUDA card and want to render your effects at 32 bit depth... or you have some non CUDA effects that you want to render at their maximum bit depth (greater than 8 bits).

David
AllinOneFilms.com
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Jeremy Garchow
I'd just like to Ross in here that I was on a green screen shoot today with two Arri Alexa's shooting 444.

I brought the footage in to After Effects cs6 and, wow.

I don't have the newest MacBook Pro and pulling keys in 1080 working @ 32bit was completely great.

For those of you who plan to use After Effects CS6, it's pretty awesome.

I also have CS 5.5 on that machine, and it was noticeably much slower.

This is going to be quite the suite of tools in the near future.

Jeremy
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
[Jeremy Garchow] "I brought the footage in to After Effects cs6 and, wow."

There's that word again... welcome to the party ;)

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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Robert Brown
I think CS 6 is quietly becoming a monster. A few more things to work on and there won't be a lot of reasons to buy the other stuff, at least if you want a comprehensive suite that competes with anything that is. Get Speed grade more up to speed and competitive and fix a few more things in PPro like track routing and this whole export issue and bang.

Robert Brown
Editor/VFX/Colorist - FCP, Smoke, Quantel Pablo, After Effects, 3DS MAX, Premiere Pro

http://vimeo.com/user3987510/videos
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
[David Cherniack] "The Maximum Render Quality switch is not supposed to add any quality difference if you're using CUDA effects. It's when you don't have a CUDA card and want to render your effects at 32 bit depth... or you have some non CUDA effects that you want to render at their maximum bit depth (greater than 8 bits)."

So it sounds like I can leave it unchecked for the bulk of my work. Good info, thanks.

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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Alex Hawkins
Thanks for the review David. Great stuff!

I'm about to download the trial.

Welcome to Premiere Pro land.

Alex Hawkins
Canberra, Australia
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
Thanks Alex!

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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Jon Barrie
Like Richard points out its important to keep in perspective the Prep-to-Edit (P2E) time and hard drive space requirements. Think of it like this, if you have to transcode all material before you can begin editing, where much of that is not in the final edit (Say a 10:1 ratio for scripted production) you are only needing to export 1/10th of the content at the end, which is actually a big deal. Lots of FCP workflow it was accepted to include into schedule a budget of time for the ingest/transcode, now it's a shift in budgeting time to export - same timeline for production, just a different weight on the back end as opposed to the front end. Can't apply the same paradigm of FCP workflow for PPro. End to end, you will find the Adobe way quicker and lighter on your resources such as HDD space. my 2c - JB

Jon Barrie
Adobe Video Solutions Consultant ANZ
Jon's YouTube Tutorial Page
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Tom Daigon
Richard and Jon, I appreciate your attempts at rationalizing the Adobe work flow. :D But as I have said before, When I spend several days with clients cutting and at the end of a session I have to tell them the export will take 4 hours (ie for long form pieces or graphics intensive projects) they are not used to this kind of experience and are not very happy about it. Coming from Avid DS and FCP sessions with me, these folks are used to real time dumps (to tape or files). It is a problem to be reconned with, even with the time saving up front. You guys know I am a big fan of the CS software, but this is an issue.

Tom Daigon
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http://www.hdshotsandcuts.com
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Jeremy Garchow
The bigger difference is "smart rendering".

Premiere does not rely on QTs smart rendering feature (reference movies are a function of this).

Even if the timeline is rendered in premiere pro, the entire timeline is recompressed on export.

Yes, you can use Preview files, but it's still a recompress of that preview file.

It works much differently than fcp7, and the refugees will have to adjust.

Depending on your timeline and your setup, outputs can and will take longer. If you have a full blast Cuda system, you'll be able to layoff in real time via baseband for the most part. There are exceptions there too.

This is a good read for first time premiere users: http://blogs.adobe.com/premiereprotraining/2011/02/red-yellow-and-green-ren...

Jeremy
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Tom Daigon
I had this same dialog about 8 months ago on the Adobe Premiere forum. At that time Wil from Adobe explained in detail the concept of Smart Rendering to me and why PrP doesnt do it.

At this point it is a given that folks either accept or dont. But I think its important for new users not to be blind sided by it when in the middle of a project. And I know Adobe is very comfortable about being honest and transparent about this issue.

Tom Daigon
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Jeremy Garchow
By the way, I know there's the meme that PPro CS 6 = FCP8. It's not and thankfully it's not.

As with any new NLE change, even though there's familiar features, you can't force Premiere to work like fcp7, and it's best to learn how it works instead of wondering why it doesn't work like FCP7.

My two cents, anyway.
+2
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Bob Woodhead
"Yes, you can use Preview files, but it's still a recompress of that preview file. "

I thought if "use previews" was checked, and previews are in same format as output file, recompression does not occur. Right/wrong?

That said, I know that nested sequences in PPro do NOT retain their renders when nested, unlike FCP. I had a big greenscreen project - 24 half hour vids - that was built using nested sequences combined in slightly different ways to create these 24 versions. In FCP I rendered each module (sequence), then used multiple times in new seq's, only render being the first. (this also had the benefit of revisions "flowing downstream"). I shudder to think what the render time might have been otherwise.

"Constituo, ergo sum"

Bob Woodhead / Atlanta
CMX-Quantel-Avid-FCP-Premiere-3D-AFX-Crayola
"What a long strange trip it's been...."
@Bob Woodhead
by Jeremy Garchow
"I thought if "use previews" was checked, and previews are in same format as output file, recompression does not occur. Right/wrong?"


Recompression ALWAYS occurs on Premiere exports. Using a high quality intermediate codec for preview files like David Cherniack points out, will help but this means if you are using 8 or 10 but uncompressed as your intermediate, your storage requirements increase dramatically for both capacity and throughput. If you use ProRes for an intermediate, then you are in 32 bit QT.

I am not saying which is worse or better, but they are merely different. FCP's "time workflow" tends to go from more time up front, with high quality intermediate renders and very short exports/outputs as the intermediate renders become part of the export. Premiere works in the opposite direction (in my opinion). The front end is instant, the middle is more real time, and the export can take a while. There are ways to speed it up, you just need to consider it differently as it doesn't work like FCP7...and that's OK! Premiere has it's own personality, it is not FCP8 and shouldn't be treated as such (again, my opinion).

Jeremy
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Bret Williams
Who is doing all this transcoding other than Legacy FCP users? Avid has a great AMA system that uses just about anything, FCP X uses most formats natively. And Smoke does as well doesn't it? Avid and X are ready for output upon completion of sequence. Not sure about Smoke. And it's not like you don't have to render during the edit with premiere, it's just to some bizarre mpeg 2 codec. And with Premiere you could have After Effects sequences nested right there. They could take all day to recompress if they're complex enough. (one of the reasons I never round tripped Motion - it took 10 times longer to render within an FCP 7 sequence than it did to render to a file).

I think Premiere 6 is worth a look, and I have the Master Collection anyway so I'll be paying my $29 a month and seeing how it goes. Still looking for that next system. Might just end up being a FCP X, CS6, Smoke suite.
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Jeremy Garchow
[Bret Williams] "And it's not like you don't have to render during the edit with premiere, it's just to some bizarre mpeg 2 codec. And with Premiere you could have After Effects sequences nested right there. They could take all day to recompress if they're complex enough. (one of the reasons I never round tripped Motion - it took 10 times longer to render within an FCP 7 sequence than it did to render to a file). "

You can set the "preview" file format in Premiere, and then you can choose to use those previews for the recompressed export or not.

You don't have to use the MPEG2 intermediate. Adobe's "official" stance is that you shouldn't use preview files on export, but they also understand if that's better for you workflow. They are open to it all, but the export is always recompressed, whether you use preview files or not.

And yes, dynamic linked sequences can take a while, but you can also set After Effects to render "Proxies" which you can set to whatever quality you want. This way you can keep linked AE comps, and not playback the whole AE composition, but rather the rendered "proxy".

Pr CS6 ≠ FCP8

Jeremy
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Chris Harlan
Good article! I'm excited, man. How was working the volume in individual clips?
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
[Chris Harlan] "Good article! I'm excited, man. How was working the volume in individual clips?"

Thanks Chris. I only tested clip-based volume keyframes and they seem to work fine, exactly the same as FCP7. You can work with audio at the sample level by selecting Show Audio Time Units in either the source viewer or timeline. Haven't tried the mixer yet. All in all, audio tools look good.

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by Pj Adamo
Seems there is a huge artifact problem when you add 3D Fx and render thru HDMI output. Please read the Adobe forum: http://forums.adobe.com/message/4383395
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Richard Harrington
The gotcha is going to 32-bit codecs, not all exporting.

Think of it this way.

OTHER NLEs Import tax. Have to convert everything and then wait to convert to edit (or take huge hit in background). Final export faster, but took a MUCH bigger hit on storage and time up front.

Adobe Premiere Pro has virtually no import time and much after performance. You can stick with 64-bit formats, or easily take what you save on hard drive space and get a hardware deck for real-time output.

From start to finish, Adobe Premiere Pro is MUCh faster. You just are noticing on export, but need to remember where'd you'd be on another NLE that makes all that transcoding happen up front. I only see a hit on certain formats, mainly Quicktime codecs.

Richard M. Harrington, PMP

Author: From Still to Motion, Video Made on a Mac, Photoshop for Video, Understanding Adobe Photoshop, Final Cut Studio On the Spot and Motion Graphics with Adobe Creative Suite 5 Studio Techniques
+1
Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Tom Daigon
Thanks David. Nice review. In my experience the only gotcha is the Exporting. Since it plays all native clips, it needs to rebuild each frame when exporting the timeline to the codec of your choice. And if its a long form OR a heavy effects laiden piece this can be excessively long. I do love whats been done in CS6 and have confidence in the Adobe team to deal with issues that need addressing.

Tom Daigon
PrP / After Effects Editor
http://www.hdshotsandcuts.com
Mac Pro 3,1
8 core
10.7.3
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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by David Lawrence
[Tom Daigon] "In my experience the only gotcha is the Exporting."

Thanks Tom,

You're absolutely right about export. I alluded to it a bit but with so much to cover, I figured important issues like that are best left for more in depth coverage. Counting on experts like you to fill in the gaps.

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Re: Premiere Pro CS 6.0: First Impressions
by Tom Daigon
Ha ha, David. I am far from an expert. Just in a constant state of learning new things :D

Tom Daigon
PrP / After Effects Editor
http://www.hdshotsandcuts.com
Mac Pro 3,1
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