If you're going to run this program on Windows 7, I'd very much recommend you update to at least version 10 or 11. Version 4 is nearly 6 years old and was built for XP. You'll need to contact Adobe to find out how much an upgrade will cost -- although many people find that it's cheaper to just buy a full version of the program on Amazon.
Also, if you're working high-def video, version 4 is very primitive and is almost incapable of working with AVCHD. Version 11 has been optimized for a number of current video formats.
That said, what model of camcorder is your video coming from and what format and resolution is it?
When you start your Premiere Elements project, which project settings do you select? To see your project settings, look under the Edit menu.
Your hardware is plenty up to the task. It's your software, and how you have it set up for your video, that's likely the problem.
Thanks for your quick response.
My new project setting in Premier 4 is set to: PAL - DV standard 48 KHz.
Also, I will soon upgarde my PC to Windows 8.
Right now, I just bought a new NIKON D5200 with a 18-105 1.35-5.6 G ED NIKKOR lens system.
Since I'm going to shoot and edit much more HD video from now on, I guess I will need a good video editing capability.
In amazon it will cost me ~70$ to buy ver. 11.
Assuming I'll buy Premier Elements 11, can you please recommend a specific video editing card for my system (with Win 8) ?
What else can I do to speed up my video editing and rendering tasks?
Premiere Pro (US about $800) uses some nVidia cards (with at least 1Gig video ram) to speed up editing on the timeline
Premiere Elements does not do that, so buying a more expensive nVidia card does not help with PrElements
Assuming you want the best out of that new camera, I don't think you have much choice but to upgrade. And, you should get the combined version of Photoshop and Premier Elements 11. Most that own cameras like that want to take advantage of the RAW format sooner or later. Both PE and PrE need a later version of Adobe Camera Raw (ACR) for that camera and you have to version 11 for that.
For faster processing you need to add RAM. 4 GB is minimal. After making Windows 7 or 8 run, there is not much left over for video processing. Get at least 8 GB. 12 or 16 GB is not too much when you are using a 64 bit Windows.
You do not need a specific "video editing card" for PrE. You do need current "drivers" for the one you have.
If it still does not run fast enough, consider adding a Solid State Drive.
For the crashing, this FAQ Entry might be useful. It starts with a general PrE checklist, then goes into computer and OS tuneup, and ends with many links on troubleshooting and finding causes: http://forums.adobe.com/thread/792580?tstart=0
As for the GPU, any current video card, with at least 1GB of VRAM, will work well. PrE does not place much of a load on the GPU, but it DOES rely very, very heavily on the video driver. Both nVidia and AMD/ATI issue constant driver updates, with nVidia leading the way at this moment.
Also, while talking about drivers, some users have experienced issues with Win8 drivers. I would wait until SP1 has been released for Win8, before changing to it from Win7. For this reason, I just ordered a new laptop, and specified Win7. As the company, ADK, only builds custom and semi-custom video editing machines, they commented that they will ONLY install Win7 at this time, and have been testing Win8, since the first beta. They do not think that it is yet ready for "prime time."
PS - I still use PrE 4.0, but on XP-Pro SP3, and have only crashed it 2-3 times over the years. At least 2 times, it was due to OE on my part. However, my computer is tuned and built for video editing.
Many thanks to all.
I've decided to buy the combined version of Photoshop Elements 11 and Premier Elements 11; to keep my Win 7 configuration until win 8 SP1 comes ; and not to buy a dedicated video editing card.
Again - I'm delighted to see your goodwill and knowledge sharing.
Have a very good week !
For smoothe editing, you may need more than 4 GB of RAM.