15 Replies Latest reply on Jan 20, 2009 8:27 AM by Harm Millaard

    Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue

    Shutter-Bug46
      I have several video sources. I have a Sony digital camcorder that produces MPG files that play well with Windows media player. I have a DVD recorder that I can user to convert my analogue videos to DVDs resulting in the usual VOB files. I have a standalone DVD burner that can do the same thing, accept analogue video input and and produce a finished DVD. I have a built in TV tuner with a VCR installed that allows me to input from video tape (VHS and VHSc).

      I've used all of these sources to great success with Premiere Elements for a few years. In the summer I finally upgraded to Premiere Pro CS3 and I've had nothing but trouble since.

      MPG files from my digital camcorder come into Premiere Pro without audio. When I sought support from Adobe the only answer I got was that I didn't set things up correctly, they didn't bother to say what might not be set up correctly. Interestingly, when I import exactly the same file into Encore I have a lovely audio track but a completely distorted video track. It seems that the two programs can't agree on what's wrong with an MPG file that plays perfectly in everything else including Permiere Elements.

      VOB files that come from both of my DVD sources cannot be imported to Premeire at all. the import command doesn't even list them as a legitimate file. When I wrote Adobe for assistance I was simply told that Premiere Pro does not support VOB files even though they actually list these as legitimate files for import.

      As to my TV tuner, Premiere does not recognise this as a device and nothing else that came with Premiere recognizes that device either. Asking for help was useless, I'm told the device is simply not supported.

      Of course I had thought there might be a bug or something so I checked the updates and sure enough I ended up downloading 80 MB of updates but none of them fixed any of these isseus. There have been no updates since. I suspect there also won't be any more updates anyway since they've now announced CS4. Also in keeping with the bug question, I searched the literature and the knowledge base but nothing turned up a solution.

      So ... I find myself with an allegedly advanced and sophisticated classy professional video editor but with nothing to feed into it since it refuses to accept any of the files and sources I have. At the same time when I was using what is a far more primitive consumer product I had no problems using all those sources. What gives?

      To rub salt into the wounds even more, Adobe now says that it will only support CS4. Well I'm not going to upgrade something I've had for four months that refuses to work for me to begin with. And Adobe has not said that my problems would go away with an upgrade anyway so why even consider that risk? But that means as well that now I'm really stuck.

      Any suggsetions on how I can get my video sources into Premiere so that I can finally use this editor?
        • 1. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
          Harm Millaard Level 7
          Why not continue using Elements, when that worked?
          • 2. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
            Shutter-Bug46 Level 1
            Greetings Harm ...

            That's a fair question that I've asked myself too. Essentially Elements does not seamlessly link to Photoshop or Bridge for one thing and it's quite primitive when it comes to editing features and building DVDs. Premiere Pro is much more sophisticated in these areas. Add to that, why spend the money for premiere pro if I'm just going to stick with Elements in the end? Unfortunately Adobe didn't tell me beforehand that the product won't accept any of my video sources, instead it waxed on eloquently about how it will edit anything at all.

            What I have however done is to use Elements to load my VOB and MPG files and then export them as AVI files. This finally gets me something I can construct and edit successfully in premiere pro. The down side of this is that I have to waste endless hours doing those conversions before I can begin a project but at least it's a start. I'm hoping that this posting might also get me a few suggestions on how I might be able to import my sources directly. I have hundreds of files to edit so avoiding the conversions would be ideal.

            Thanks for your thoughts.

            ...Claus
            • 3. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
              Harm Millaard Level 7
              There are two major formats that PP is comfortable with and two lesser ones: DV from tape based cameras and HDV are the primary ones, P2 and XDCAM are the others. All other formats give some kind of problem, AVCHD with the muscle required, others with conversion required for a good editing experience. Your sources fall in the latter category, so either use Elements or convert before editing.
              • 4. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                the_wine_snob Level 9
                Claus,

                I also use PP for most of my work, but began using Elements as a "tool" for similar media, such as yours, because it handles much of it better. My workflow is to Import (Get Media in Elements-speak) the different media types, and then usually Export as DV-AVI immediately for Import into PP. Otherwise, I use a stand-alone 3rd party conversion program to do the same thing, prior to Import into PP. On occasion, I will do light editing in PE, but seldom.

                Usually, MPEG to DV-AVI is pretty simple (though one does have the quality hit from the initial compression to deal with), but VOBs can be very problematic. Even with the PE to PP workflow, one often has to rely on additional "tools" to get these files to Import properly with both Video & Audio.

                As Harm states, PP likes things a certain way, so I try to keep it happy and use its power for the editing of DV-AVI files. Same for non-DVD spec. Audio files. Rather than force PP to make the conversions, I do it outside of PP first. Things go much more smoothly then.

                One can never have too many "tools" in the toolbox. I guess that for some, one NLE program that would ingest every known format and spit out every other known format, would be a good idea, but none exists. Until it comes out, we just do the conversions and live with the results. In conversions, there are always compromises, and one needs to experiment to see what workflow is best for them. This is especially true for maintaining all quality possible and then factoring in time to do the work. The only other option is to work with DV-AVI (or other formats that PP likes) all of the way though. Like you, I do a fair amount of analog to digital and use hardware/software to get me directly to DV-AVI, so that I do not go through the DVD creation process. This helps maintain quality and much easier to deal with.

                Sidenote: as Harm suggests, Elements is actually cheaper than my other main conversion program and does a lot of other stuff, as well. I do not use it (Elements) to actually edit, just prep my files for PP. If you do add Elements to your toolbox, check out a few articles that I have posted on things to watch out for with its installation on a system that already has PP on it. I know that later installations of PE4, where CS2 exists, causes a few problems and that a Repair Installation of CS2 is then necessary to fix these. Do not know if these problems exist when adding PE7 to a CS3 system will be the same, but be aware. I had to Repair PP, Bridge and Photoshop, after PE4. Adobe just never figured that one might install PE4
                b AFTER
                CS2/CS3.

                Good luck,

                Hunt
                • 5. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                  Shutter-Bug46 Level 1
                  Greetings Bill ...

                  Thanks!! It looks like I'm on the right track after all. I do resent having Adobe tell me prior to purchase that PP imports everything when it doesn't, but as you say we sometimes have to make compromises. Thanks for a very comprehensive reply.

                  Also I didn't have a problem as you described. I had started with premiere elements a few years ago. Later I installed Photoshop CS3 while leaving PE on my machine. And then I eventually installed PP too. I guess the issue probably comes up if you do the reverse, starting with CSx and later installing PE. I'll keep that in mind when I migrate to a new computer.

                  Thanks for your thoughts, they are really appreciated.

                  Do have a super day.

                  ...Claus
                  • 6. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                    Miles Johnston Level 1
                    Seems very strange that an editing package should not have thought through getting material to edit to start with. I was furioyus having spent £1000 on a Matrox.PP1.5 system, that upgrading to CS3 would requiring dumping expensive ingesting card, thereby relying Firewire import only.... which crashes and doesn't work. Thus going back to my 1.5 to ingest... but having sold off the card ata amassive loss!

                    Having to use yet another software package to get various files ingested (in the right Field order, as 1.5 suffers very badly from different sources, in what field order it uses)

                    I gather this is all pointing us to splash out more on CS4, which is designed around VISTA, which I avoid like the darkest plague on earth, as that will require throwing out the PC hardware... ! And I have not heard anyone I know who welcomed VISTA
                    • 7. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                      Harm Millaard Level 7
                      With Matrox you may need the RT.X4 with CS4 and the RT.X5 with the upcoming CS5, thereby rendering your previous investment worthless.

                      Vista now has one advocate, Jim. He does not mind the triple footprint, the driver issues (there are still some driver issues, although they are disappearing rapidly) and the slow performance.

                      IMO, if you have 4 GB or less RAM, continue using XP. If you have more memory, then Vista 64 is a very valid option, maybe the only one, but turn off Aero, Sidebar, and remove all ballast you can.
                      • 8. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                        Level 1
                        Claus_Nabert@adobeforums.com wrote:
                        > Greetings Harm ...
                        >
                        > That's a fair question that I've asked myself too. Essentially
                        > Elements does not seamlessly link to Photoshop or Bridge for one
                        > thing and it's quite primitive when it comes to editing features and
                        > building DVDs. Premiere Pro is much more sophisticated in these
                        > areas. Add to that, why spend the money for premiere pro if I'm just
                        > going to stick with Elements in the end? Unfortunately Adobe didn't
                        > tell me beforehand that the product won't accept any of my video
                        > sources, instead it waxed on eloquently about how it will edit
                        > anything at all.
                        >
                        > What I have however done is to use Elements to load my VOB and MPG
                        > files and then export them as AVI files. This finally gets me
                        > something I can construct and edit successfully in premiere pro. The
                        > down side of this is that I have to waste endless hours doing those
                        > conversions before I can begin a project but at least it's a start.
                        > I'm hoping that this posting might also get me a few suggestions on
                        > how I might be able to import my sources directly. I have hundreds of
                        > files to edit so avoiding the conversions would be ideal.
                        >
                        > Thanks for your thoughts.
                        >
                        > ...Claus

                        Does the old trick of just changing the extension of a vob file to mpg
                        work in Premiere Pro?
                        • 9. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                          Harm Millaard Level 7
                          Not always. You may need to demux and convert the AC3 audio to WAV for it to work.
                          • 10. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                            Missteach Level 1
                            I made the exact same observation around a year ago but got nothing but responses telling me Premiere Elements is inferior, designed only for amateurs and, therefore, this is why PPCS3 is better!!!

                            My observation was that I don't use either Elements or PPCS3 for personal use. They are both tools to make my clients happy. I find it difficult explaining to clients that the much more expensive program can't do a simple job like a cheap one, and I will have to charge much more for time. Obviously, this doesn't work because they the go out and buy Elements for themselves!!

                            Very frustrating.
                            • 11. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                              Harm Millaard Level 7
                              Elements is not inferior. It is a different tool for a different purpose. PP and Elements are both in the category of NLE's, but so are a hammer and a screwdriver. They are both in the category of hand tools but serve a different purpose. Same here.
                              • 12. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                                Shutter-Bug46 Level 1
                                Premiere Elements is remarkably functional especially considering its cost. But of course if it was really outstanding there'd be no reason to buy PPCS3. While it has a lot of functionality, there are arbitrary limits to most of the functions that forces you into the more expensive product if you want to do more than just play around.

                                Having said that though, what baffles me endlessly is that it is reasonable to assume that the more expensive product, that alleges professional capabilities, has all the functionality of Elements and more. That's how it works going from Photoshop Elements to Photoshop CS3. But clearly that is not to be. What baffles me too is that I fail to see the advantage of having an editor that does not have the capability to accept material to edit.

                                I have a workaround by using Premiere Elements to prepare the files for import and then getting them into PP. Alas that's time consuming and should not be necessary. However all is not lost at least it works. Perhaps some day Adobe will advertise in bold healdines that it has an awesome video editor that can actually import video material without having to first convert it using a consumer product. And no doubt they'll flog that as an incredible advance in video editing.

                                This has made me aware of Adobe's attitudes towards it's user's needs and frustrations. As a result I've payed a lot more attention to the actual functionality of Adobe products and I now check this against competing products. There's no way I will own their entire creative suite now or ever. A case in point was their Sound Booth, an allegedly easier audio editor for those of us who are not into audio. Well, the way it maintains its simplicity is to allow you only one sound track. The new release, CS4 finally allows more than one track and of course Adobe flogs that as an amazing advance. Well it isn't, I've got a ten year old sudio editor that's been doing that and a lot more ten years ago.

                                I've learned now that just because they have a world leader in a product like Photoshop, it does not follow that they are even half as good when it comes to other components. So with the exception of the few Adobe products I do own, I'm avoiding them for my other needs. It seems that competitive products are not as arrogant and tend to provide the needed tools. The also tend to listen to their users a lot mroe as well.

                                Thankfully too I've learned this lesson quickly enough before I upgraded Photoshop too. The CS3 version works just fine. The new version (CS4) no longer has an online Help, you have to sign on to the Internet, and a few other functions like PDF presentations have been removed too. There was the odd new goodie added too but only the odd one and none justifies upgrading considering that the things removed are actually functions I use. This too I've discovered in the past couple of years, Adobe does give you new functionality but often at the cost of functions removed. So one needs to be vigilent even when considering an upgrade. They don't tell you what they remove, they only try to seduce you with new things they've added.

                                If there is a better product to PPCS3 please let me know and I'll drop the Adobe product completely. In fact I'd be happy to know about any product that is an improvement over Adobe products. In the meantme though, I've got my PP working and I'm staying with CS3 for both that and Photoshop too. Thanks for your thoughts.

                                Do have a super day

                                ...Claus
                                • 13. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                                  Jim_Simon Level 8
                                  >What baffles me too is that I fail to see the advantage of having an editor that does not have the capability to accept material to edit.

                                  I could see where creating an NLE that could edit anything would also create a LOT of opportunity for bugs and other issues relating to supporting such a vast array of codecs, most of which are not designed for editing. Personally I'd prefer a pro level NLE just stick to handling pro media extremely well.
                                  • 14. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                                    Level 1
                                    What the poster was describing was bring a wide variety of assets that
                                    are in delivery formats into Premiere to edit again and combine.

                                    My understanding is that PP is more specifically intended to take media
                                    in a much more raw format and be the vehicle used to create the final
                                    delivery formats for distribution. It would require someone with the
                                    program design insight to explain if there are specific reasons for
                                    limiting this compatibility focus in the Pro version.
                                    • 15. Re: Getting Media into Premiere CS3 Issue
                                      Harm Millaard Level 7
                                      Possibly the same arguments car manufacturers have for having an engine that uses diesel and another that uses petrol or hybrid technology. Different fuels for different purposes. And they are not interchangeable. The same applies to NLE's. PR can be said to be a luxury hybrid (think Lexus 600H) with all the bells and whistles you can think of, but is not a delivery truck, does not run on diesel and is not capable of transporting anything you throw at it in the sense of all and every video/still camera/phone/recorded TV or other format you throw at it. You need a delivery truck for that and PR is not.