7 Replies Latest reply on May 17, 2009 4:43 PM by the_wine_snob

    Am I asking too much of Premier Elements?

    Bill CCC

      I've used Premier Elements for the past several years, editing news reports for the Internet and sometimes even for local TV stations. However, those were short, and they were on an older machine.


      Recently I got a new computer. I had to get a 32-bit machine because one of the things I need the machine for is currency trading, and some of the software I use for that does not support 64-bit. The new machine is as top-of-the-line as I could go in 32-bit, Intel Quad-core i7 processor, Radeon HD4870 video card, two 1TB hard drives, 6GB ram. With the help of a local pro technician I put it together myself, though I have to say that the process was more difficult than I anticipated. I'm fairly technically capable but I have to admit that it all the tech stuff seems to jumble in my head after a while.


      To accommodate the new machine, I also upgraded from PE 3.0 to PE 7.


      I am trying to edit a talent show video from my daughter's school. I'm taking video from three sources, all Sony, a MiniDV HD (HDR-HC1), a solid-state memory Handicam (DCR-SX40), and a borrowed AVCHD (HDR-SR11). I also got very clean audio straight off the sound board onto a Tascam digital recorder. The show ran about 90 minutes, but I'm including some pre-show interviews on the track as well.


      I will need to create a DVD for sale to the parents.


      I have been able to download all the video onto the computer and into PE. The audio track is a WAV file and was easily imported, and dropped right into the "Soundtrack".


      When I play the soundtrack back during editing, it cuts out. This happens with both the sountracks from the video and with the imported WAV soundtrack. I read the other post on this problem, and I'm not sure if the responses apply here, as the computer I have is (allegedly) so fast. I tried cutting down the WAV soundtrack and videos into small (single-perforer-length) segments of three-to-five minutes, still the same problem. Also, I don't seem to be able to get sound when I export the video. I've done it in a couple of formats, still no audio. Happens when I use sound from the WAV file and audio from the cameras. Do I need to procure some specific CODECs for this?


      BTW, I am syncing the WAV track up with the MC's and performers' lips. So far the tests I've performed indicate that I can successfully do this, but the sound cut-out problem is really giving me fits during that process! (If anyone is interested in a trick for doing this, I find that looking at the waveforms on the sountracks and lining them up with each other helps a lot.)


      Would moving the video files to the second hard drive help solve this problem, as well as taking the machine off-line during the video process and shutting off the anti-virus, etc? I'm sure the machine is up to it, but is Premier Elements up to creating such a long show and then burning a DVD? (I sure hope so because after spending all that money on a computer I can't afford the Pro software!)


      Many thanks for all help and suggestions.   -Bill

        • 1. Re: Am I asking too much of Premier Elements?
          Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

          I would not recommend trying to mix miniDV and AVCHD footage in the same project, Bill. There are also liabilities to trying to mix MPEG hard drive camcorder footage and miniDV in the same project -- but there are workarounds. But mixing AVCHD and miniDV in the same project is definitely going to lead to some challenges.


          You also don't say what operating system you're using and if it has been updated, tuned and optimized for video editing.


          AVCHD is a particularly challenging format to edit. Your hardware may be up to it, but if your software and operating system are not properly tuned and set up you're going to have problems working with it.


          Is your Premiere Elements project using and AVCHD project preset?


          Also, as you work watch for a red line along the top of your timeline. This is an indication that you're using a format that will require frequent rendering as you work. To render, press Enter and let the program create a temporary render file (the red line will turn green).

          • 2. Re: Am I asking too much of Premier Elements?
            Bill CCC Level 1

            Steve-- Thanks so much for your help. I was not aware that there was an AVCHD setting for PE7 (I'm not that far along in the manual yet!), so I'll try that.


            My tech person recommended that I stay away from Vista, so I went with XP Pro. He also recommended that I stick with Service Pack 2.


            One thing that's complicating the situation is that I had an equipment malfunction at the beginning of the show (incompatible tripod adapters), and lost the first couple of minutes. If I can cut the AVCHD stuff in with my MiniDVC footage, that will help tremendously, so I really need to accomplish that.


            If I do set the PE7 project setting to AVCHD preset, will that inhibit the use of the other formats? Many thanks,   -Bill

            • 3. Re: Am I asking too much of Premier Elements?
              Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

              If I do set the PE7 project setting to AVCHD preset, will that inhibit the use of the other formats?


              it might. As I said, working with AVCHD can be challenging enough. But mixing it with other formats -- particularly standard DV -- may or may not be successful. You are, after all, telling the program to process the footage completely differently than it's designed to be processed.


              I don't know if your ultimate goal is to produce a standard DVD or BluRay, but that could affect your workflow too.


              If your goal is to produce a standard DVD, for instance, I might recommend that, before you even begin editing, you load all of your AVCHD footage into a project set up for AVCHD and see if you can output a DV-AVI from that footage.


              This DV-AVI will be standard rather than hi-resolution -- but at least you'll be able to mix it in a standard DV project with your miniDV footage and you'll be working with similar formats.


              But, as I said at the outset, I sure wouldn't recommend trying to mix AVCHD and miniDV footage natively into the same project. (As far as I know, only Apple's Final Cut has the ability to mix formats that diverse into the same project.)

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              • 4. Re: Am I asking too much of Premier Elements?
                the_wine_snob Level 9

                If I read the initial post correctly, you are going to DVD for you final output. Is that correct?


                If so, I would re-Capture the AVCHD material as SD. The camera should be able to do that downconversion, and then PE is doing the Capture in SD as DV-AVI Type II files. For the MPEG material, I'd convert to DV-AVI Type II material, outside of PE. This will give you all DV-AVI Type II material.


                Your Project Preset will then be DV, and everything edited in SD. This should make editing a breeze.


                As for your Audio issue, Audio hangs, and drop-outs (provided that the source files are fine and play fine), *usually* stem from I/O issues - the ability of the HDD's and controller, to keep up with the signal. I am with you, however, that your system certainly *seems* robust enough to handle the Audio.


                How are your HDD's set up? How are your various programs, and their files spread around. Things like OS, programs, Virtual Memory Page Files, PE Project files, media files, Scratch Disks, etc., can make a big difference. Let me know what the HDD utilization looks like, and I'll get a better idea of things that might help - or, maybe see no problem there at all, and we can move on to other possible issues.


                Good luck,



                1 person found this helpful
                • 5. Re: Am I asking too much of Premier Elements?
                  Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                  Can AVCHD camcorders downconvert, Hunt? I thought that was exclusively a feature of HDV camcorders.

                  • 6. Re: Am I asking too much of Premier Elements?
                    Paul_LS Level 4

                    No you can not down convert AVCHD in the camcorder. Normally you get software with the camcorder for converting to standard definition MPEG2.

                    • 7. Re: Am I asking too much of Premier Elements?
                      the_wine_snob Level 9



                      I'm not the one to ask that of. I only work in SD. I do not shoot AVCHD at all.


                      If you are correct, and you usually are, then my rec. would be to do two projects: one AVCHD and one full SD. The AVCHD Project could be Exported as a DV-AVI Type II and Imported into PE. I'd not do much editing in the AVCHD Project, so you can extract the full Clips from it, and then have Handles, etc. in your SD Project.