14 Replies Latest reply on Mar 29, 2013 2:23 PM by DMH79

    Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX

    PierreLouisBeranek Level 1

      I've just spent a week learning FCPX to see if it's a viable alternative to fill in Premiere Pro's gaps (for example, it's terrible Multicam interface).

       

      After a week with FCPX, I've decided to stop a client project and start over in Premiere.  From what I can tell FCPX isn't quite ready for prime time yet: i.e. no effect/transition presets, no proper interface for keyframing, buggy clip speed controls that work on some clips but not on others, Timeline workflow that's confusing as hell, etc.

       

      However, there are several great features in FCPX that Premiere Pro users would definitely benefit from (Adobe, please take notice.  Forum users, if you like any of these ideas, please send them to Adobe as feature requests, as I will too).

       

      FINAL CUT PRO X FEATURES THAT ARE NEEDED IN PREMIERE PRO:

       

      1. First and foremost, the ability to use keywords to sort and organize subclips.  This is HUGE and probably the biggest thing missing in PP's workflow!  In FCPX, you can assign 1 or more keywords to clip selections.  Each keyword becomes the equivalent to a Bin in PP's Project window.  An interview clip, for example, can quickly be marked with in/out points during live playback, and each clip selection can be sent to its own respective keyword 'bin(s)' for easy finding later on.  Thus a long interview clip can be broken up into any number of subclips organized by terms such as 'soundbite', 'nod', 'smile', 'reaction shots', 'favorites', etc.  And since up to 9 keywords can be assigned their own keyboard shortcuts (e.g. 1-9 on the number pad), assigning keywords and thus organizing subclips into logical 'bins' can even be done on the fly during playback!  Lastly, the 'subclips' in FCPX are intelligent in the sense that you can still drag the in/out points out up to the original duration of the clip, unlike PP's unusable subclips that create hard in/out points that can't be reset.  Adobe, PLEASE add intelligent ways to organize subclips into bins!  This is still the biggest thing missing in Premiere IMO.
      2. Easy way to export/import keyboard layout presets.
      3. Graphical keyboard layout preset interface. i.e. ability to set shortcuts by dragging commands to the keys of a graphical keyboard interface, or to click on any keyboard key in the interface to see and change all associated shortcuts (with and without modifiers).
      4. Better multicam interface with automatic synchronization of clips based on audio analysis (i.e. built-in PluralEyes software). (I won't elaborate on this point since I've discussed it extensively in other threads)
      5. Timeline Audio keyframes that only move left/right or up/down, depending on initial movement after selection.  This would make it so much easier to reposition keyframes in the Timeline without inadvertently changing their dB values.  And no, PP's current keyboard modifier to restrict audio keyframe movement to left/right or up/down does not work properly.  It never did!
      6. Intelligent audio waveforms in the Timeline. i.e. Waveforms that grow or shrink to graphically represent their volume settings.
      7. Ability to change a clip's audio from Stereo to dual mono and back to Stereo after it had already been used in the Timeline.

       

      Here's my short list.  If you've used FCPX before, please add your suggestions to the list!  Overall, I would much prefer that Adobe integrate some of FCPX's great ideas than the other way around, because after using FCPX for a week, it's become clear that Premiere Pro is so much closer than FCP to giving editors what they want and need.  Just adding item 1 from my list would go a long way towards PP achieving the goal of perfect NLE!

       

      Thanks for reading.

        • 1. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
          jdmack01 Level 1

          "Intelligent audio waveforms in the Timeline. i.e. Waveforms that grow or shrink to graphically represent their volume settings."

           

          Hmm.  I thought Premiere already had that feature.  I can visually see the audio volume of the waveform graphic in my timelines.

           

          J. D.

          • 2. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
            PierreLouisBeranek Level 1

            Hi J. D.,

             

            Yes, audio clips display a waveform in the Timeline, but they do not grow or shrink to graphically represent the modified volume of a clip.  This is what FCPX does, and what would make a great new feature in Premiere Pro.  Also, an audio clip set to mono in Premiere Pro (i.e. Fill Right or Fill Left) should only show the relevant channel, not both as PP currently does, which makes little sense.

             

            Kevin Monahan, if you could lobby Adobe on our behalf for the inclusion of list item 1, that would be great!  I'm not sure if you're an editor or not, but if you are, I'm sure you can see the great organizational value in being able to sort full and partial clips into keyword bins on the fly (using shortcuts), as FCPX does.  This is FCPX's winning feature IMO, but the rest of that program is still half baked at best.  If Premiere Pro were to gain this feature, I believe it would get even more FCP7 editors to switch over.  FCP7 has a way to store subclips into bins by dragging them from the Timeline to the Project Window.  This is less elegant than FCPX's method, but does add the advantage of being able to store/sort not only clips for future use, but clips complete with effects and keyframes!  If Premiere Pro could add both features, adding flexible subclips (i.e. without permanent in/out points) to bins with keyboard shortcuts AND adding subclips with effects/keyframes to bins from the Timeline, it would be hands down the most user friendly and logical NLE in the world.

             

            Thanks!

            • 3. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
              wfmc staffer Level 2

              When volume gain is adjusted, the timeline waveform visually changes to represent the adjustment.

              • 4. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                PierreLouisBeranek Level 1

                Hi wfmc staffer,

                 

                You're quite right.  I should have been more specific.  When changing/keyframing the audio level of a clip in the Timeline, the waveform display does not change to reflect its current volume.  In FCPX it does, and I found this to be a very handy feature that Premiere Pro could use.

                • 5. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                  wfmc staffer Level 2

                  I'd be okay with that if the feature could be toggled on and off, sort of a "view adjusted waveform" toggle in the audio track controls area. 

                  There is often a need to see the unaltered waveform.

                   

                   

                  The render and replace feature is a little like what your describing, however the only adjustment options would be to undo and try again.

                   

                  CS6 did seem to adopt some similar features as FCP X and FCP 7. There is the hoverscrub with the ability to mark in and out, keyboard shortcuts and terminology/semantics changes.

                   

                  On your first point, have you compared Premiere's production workflow to FCP X taking into account logging, trimming, and meta annotations that can be done in Prelude? I honestly haven't spent much time with it because not many of the projects we work on here scale too big. Between Bridge and Prelude and Premiere's meta logging abilities, it wouldn't occur to me that Adobe's abilities are lacking, albeit different that what FCP-X is offering.

                  • 6. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                    PierreLouisBeranek Level 1

                    Perhaps the argument can be made that Adobe's abilities as a whole are not 'lacking', as you say wfmc, but it's undeniable in my opinion that Premiere Pro's abilities are more than lacking when it comes to creating, organizing and managing subclips.  These most basic of editing features can and should be included in an NLE.  Apple understands this.  Why doesn't Adobe?  An integrated approach, as FCPX & 7 offer, is undeniably better since:

                    1. it doesn't require any round-tripping better two or more applications
                    2. it doesn't require users to learn a new program/interface
                    3. it doesn't require users to create a new set of keyboard shortcuts for the other program(s)
                    4. it is far more intuitive, logical, easy and discoverable
                    5. it doesn't require any special planning (Prelude requires planning since it is meant to be used before editing in Premiere.  Integrated subclip creation can be done at anytime during the editing process, eliminating the need to plan and sort all clips in advance before editing)
                    6. it allows added functionality which cannot be achieved through separate programs (Case in point: How could Prelude ever allow users to store subclips with imbedded effects and keyframes as FCP7 does?  It can't.)

                     

                    So to resume, Premiere Pro isn't just 'different' compared to FCPX & FCP7 in the area of media management/organization,  it's clearly lacking.  The sooner Adobe addresses these serious shortcomings, the better Premiere Pro will be for all editors.

                     

                    I'm sure that understanding this is easy for editors who have actually used FCP7 and/or FCPX.  Hopefully I've explained it clearly enough that Premiere Pro users, who have never used/benefited from these FCP tools, can understand what they're missing.  ...and when they see something missing in Premiere Pro, one would hope that they ask Adobe for it!

                    • 7. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                      Kevin-Monahan Adobe Employee

                      Thanks for your post. I hope you have already filed feature requests for these.

                       

                      1. I like this one. Let's all file feature requests for keywords to sort and organize clips: http://www.adobe.com/go/wish
                      2. You can use the .kys file to share or move keyboard shortcuts. Are you familiar with those? I modified the Help file to include this info: http://adobe.ly/WAfgCZ
                      3. A graphical UI for keyboard shortcuts is a feature request I'd like to see implemented, as well: http://www.adobe.com/go/wish
                      4. Automated synchronization of multicamera clips based on audio waveforms (merge clips too) would be wonderful. That's a feature request.
                      5. Constrain audio keyframes vertically or horizontally with a keyboard modifier? I don't know of that one that is supposed to work. I have a feeling that this is a feature request.
                      6. Better audio waveforms? Feature request.
                      7. Changing audio tracks on the fly? Feature request.

                       

                      Pierre-Louis, I actually am an editor and with 23 years of pro experience. Here's a basic summary:

                      • I've been chopping bits of tape together since 1983.
                      • I have a BA in Radio, TV, and Film.
                      • I started as an online linear editor (GVG, CMX, etc.) in the late 80's.
                      • I've edited, color corrected, and provided motion graphics for numerous productions, including features, commercials, music videos, web video, and corporate video in LA and San Francisco.
                      • I was formally trained at Video Symphony on Photoshop, Media 100, After Effects, and Avid Media Composer by Hollywood experts in 1997 (6 month long boot camp certification).
                      • Original 2-popper known as "Telly." My hero was Ralph Fairweather (R.I.P.), the sole voice inside Apple that helped us all with FCP 1.
                      • Founded the first FCPUG, SF Cutters, from which all FCPUGs sprung. I helped found the LAFCPUG, as well.
                      • I started training people Final Cut Pro professionally in 2000 (BAVC, Video Symphony).
                      • I was an Apple Certified Trainer for almost a decade. I was one of the first in the program chosen by Apple, and always in the "first class" of trainers for every rev.
                      • Wrote the well-received book, "Motion Graphics and Effects in Final Cut Pro." See what my friend, Ken Stone has to say about the book.
                      • As a result of my book and reputation as a trainer, I worked inside Apple on the documentation for Final Cut Studio 1 (LiveType, FCP, FC Express).
                      • I worked on the XSAN team testing XSAN after I finished with FCS 1.
                      • I worked on 2 features at Pixar (Nemo, WALLE) doing pre-viz using After Effects.
                      • I worked on Final Cut Studio 3 inside Apple as an "internal editor" (beta tester), mainly working on Apple Motion.
                      • I have worked at Adobe as a tech writer, community manager, and now as the support lead.
                      • There's more, but I'll stop there.

                       

                      Since I am an editor, trainer, tech writer and support person, I do understand your requests, however, I do have limited capability to help users change features. I am only one man with one voice. The best ammo for getting new features implemented is the feature request form.

                      • 8. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                        the_wine_snob Level 9

                        Kevin,

                         

                        While partially on the subject of Audio in PrPro, I would add a little feature from Adobe Audition - Cut on Zero-Crossings.

                         

                        Thanks for your input,

                         

                        Hunt

                        • 9. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                          PierreLouisBeranek Level 1

                          Hi Kevin,

                           

                          Thanks for your reply.  I've been copy/pasting .kys files for some time now.  I'm good with computers so I figured this out on my own, but Premiere Pro sure could use a more user friendly approach in this regard.  It should be easy for Adobe to program too, since it would just involve a 'Save as' and 'Import' dialogue box, the basic code for which already exists in PP.

                           

                          I know you're just one person, but seeing as you represent Adobe, I figure you're the 1 person who has the strongest voice with Adobe.  All of the ideas above I've sent to Adobe through their feature request form (I've sent 45 FRs in just the last month or two!)  Some of those requests I've sent years ago.  With FCPX doing several of the things I've been requesting, it's my hope that Adobe will pay more attention, especially to item #1.  But other than these few strengths, FCPX is a mess (you can't create effect presets, and can't even determine is a clip has already been used in the Timeline or not, for example).  So PP is still the NLE of choice for now.  And with CS6.5 around the corner, it can only get better!

                           

                          Bill, what is "Cut on Zero-Crossings"?  Sounds interesting!

                          • 10. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                            Kevin-Monahan Adobe Employee

                            I do think it's one of the most interesting features of FCP X. I'm not sure that editors would prefer to give up traditional bins, though. I think it would be cool to have the power of keywords collections along with bins. Perhaps have a command to change views.

                             

                            Yes, I am only one guy. And you're right, I do have more access to the team than users. However, that does not discount the power users have with feature requests.

                             

                            Thanks again for your feature request.

                            • 11. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                              the_wine_snob Level 9

                              Bill, what is "Cut on Zero-Crossings"?  Sounds interesting!

                              When Cutting Audio, clicks and pops can develop if the Cut is made, where the Waveform is NOT at the Zero-point, i.e. where it crosses the Zero line. In Audition, one can limit all Cuts TO a Zero-Crossing Point. For a bit more detail, this article might prove useful: http://forums.adobe.com/message/3365894#3365894

                               

                              One can change the Display in PrPro to Audio Units, and then carefully place a cut at the Zero-Crossing point with some accuracy, but in Audition, with Cut at Zero-Crossings ON, the Cut will naturally move to the nearest Zero-Crossing accurately. With the high Sample-Rate, finding a good Zero-Crossing will only alter the Cut by a ms, or two.

                               

                              Hope that helps,

                               

                              Hunt

                              • 12. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                                Jim_Simon Level 8

                                I'm not sure that editors would prefer to give up traditional bins, though.

                                 

                                Hell, no!

                                • 13. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                                  PierreLouisBeranek Level 1

                                  I never mentioned giving up traditional bins.  I don't think anyone would want that and I certainly wouldn't want to lose Bins either!

                                   

                                  That's why the FR I suggest would seamlessly integrate FCPX's use of keywords with PP's existing Bins (i.e. FCPX Keyword Collection = PP Bin with associated keyboard shortcut).  So instead of assigning a new keyword to a clip, which automatically creates a keyword collection 'bin' in FCPX, in Premiere, editors could do the reverse: create a Bin, give it a keyboard shortcut, and then automatically send subclips to that Bin from the Source Monitor (and perhaps from the Timeline as well?! ) just by hitting the keyboard shortcut.  This workflow would improve Premiere Pro's organizational efficiency by at least 1000%! (no exageration) 

                                   

                                  Jim and Kevin, please read my first post and you'll see that there's nothing to lose, Bins included, only everything to gain.

                                   

                                  Thanks for the explanation Bill.  Cut at Zero-Crossings sounds like a great feature!  Did you submit this as a FR for PP?  Would certainly work great in PP as well!

                                  • 14. Re: Premiere Pro Editor's thoughts on FCPX
                                    DMH79 Level 2

                                    Bill Hunt wrote:

                                     

                                     

                                    Bill, what is "Cut on Zero-Crossings"?  Sounds interesting!

                                     

                                    When Cutting Audio, clicks and pops can develop if the Cut is made, where the Waveform is NOT at the Zero-point, i.e. where it crosses the Zero line. In Audition, one can limit all Cuts TO a Zero-Crossing Point. For a bit more detail, this article might prove useful: http://forums.adobe.com/message/3365894#3365894

                                     

                                    One can change the Display in PrPro to Audio Units, and then carefully place a cut at the Zero-Crossing point with some accuracy, but in Audition, with Cut at Zero-Crossings ON, the Cut will naturally move to the nearest Zero-Crossing accurately. With the high Sample-Rate, finding a good Zero-Crossing will only alter the Cut by a ms, or two.

                                     

                                    Hope that helps,

                                     

                                    Hunt

                                     

                                    Oh hell yeah, that would be nice! Feature Request, done. Thanks Bill!