16 Replies Latest reply on Dec 2, 2009 7:17 PM by the_wine_snob

    My Experience Evaluating PE8


      I have decided to post my experience in evaluating PE8.  I'm sure there will be feedback countering some of my findings or suggesting fixes, etc., but I just wanted to lay out the facts of my experience, which I would suggest is not unique.


      As background I am running a quad core Q6600, 4GB RAM, 3 drive RAID0 set with1.5TB usable storage, Nvideo 8800GTS and Win7 x64. The computer is extremely fast with all software I am using on it.  I would rate myself as intermediate in expertise with video editing, and expert with computers in general (it is my job, so I better be an expert).


      I have experience previously with other video editing packages including Sony Vegas, Cyberlink PowerDirector and Windows Movie Maker.  You might ask, if I've used Vegas, why I'm looking at more consumer oriented packages - the reason is I wanted to have a package that my wife could use.  She loves working with photo's (uses Picasa from Google) and she wanted to work with video's also.  All these packages have operated very nicely on this computer.


      Based on the reviews on pcmag.com I decided to test the trial version of Premiere and Photoshop Elements.


      The install was smooth, and after rebooting the startup of PE8 seemed ok but slow.  I then created a new project and tried to do an import from Sony PC105 miniDV camera.  Oddly I found it started writing to the Sony mediacard in the camera which is used for photos.  Eventually the import interface froze and PE8 disappeared (crashed).  I tried it a couple more times with the same results.


      I decided to go back to importing using Windows Live Photo Gallery which has no issues at all and creates DV-AVI files broken up by scene.


      I then started up PE8 to work with the imported files.  The startup is slow and the interface is extremely sluggish (usually felt like it was frozen and then after 5 to 10 seconds it would respond).


      I then imported my video files and tried playing them in interface (DV-AVI format).  I found that the preview video was frozen while the audio played fine.  So basically it was unusable for reviewing my captured videos.


      I then decided I should get some advice from the forums (in hindsight, I should have done this before installing the eval).  Based on what I read I did the following:

      - turned off background processing and the automatic startup of the Organizer background tagging.

      - turned off 3D PhysX on Nvidia card


      I then did further reading on the forums and saw a reference to Media Center issues.  I use Media Center and streaming to Xbox360 extensively, but I do not use a TV Tuner card.  I found that Media Center would not start!


      Now this was a showstopper for me.


      After all this in order to just try evaluating PE8 prior to purchasing it, I felt that this product is not ready for release, and in fact is worse then much of the beta software I have tested. I felt that it is at an alpha test level, and I doubt Adobe has tested this to any extent needed for the myriad of Windows deployments possible (eg. 32bit, 64bit, XP, vista, Win7).


      If I was to continue to use this product, I would expect Adobe to pay me for identifying the bugs, or give it away for free - but for me to pay Adobe is out of the question.  The fact that I have to review forums to attempt to get PE8 operational on my quite powerful computer is unacceptable for the typical user.


      I'm disappointed as I have a lot of respect for Adobe Photoshop, but their consumer oriented solutions are just not of the caliber and quality that an average user could benefit from.


      Time to uninstall and do more research on solutions suitable for my wife.






        • 1. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
          Itay B. Level 1

          Is Sony Vegas more professional than Premiere Elements? How so?

          • 2. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
            the_wine_snob Level 9



            Welcome to the forum.


            Thank you for taking the time to evaluate PrE 8, and for reporting your findings. One of our most respected forum members, ATR, posted his early impressions on the new version in a multi-part thread. He found some "glitches," but was able to get around most of those. His post is down the list a bit now, but should be easy to spot. Should you wish to continue the evaluation, there might be some useful tips in that longish thread.


            Also, there's a fairly recent MC thread, and a fix, that seems to work for many to get MC and PrE 8 functioning together. Might be worth a look.


            I have not experimented with PrE 8, but mainly because I use PrPro almost exclusively, and only use PrE 4 as a tool for certain operations, usually leading to PrPro for the final editing. Based only on my reading in this forum, it seems that Adobe might have tried to add too many "features," to PrE 8, and did not consider implications of these down the line. I do agree that a consumer-oriented NLE should be easy, and play well with general computer setups - that is the market. Not that many users in that market segment are going to have NLE workstations. One additional element is that PrE 8 came out, just before Win7 did. How much testing with Win7, would be a big question for me. Often, "it's all in the timing."


            I've thought about downloading the trial, and experimenting with it on my stout laptop, or maybe my workstation, but just have not had the time, nor the real inclination, as I am happy with PrE 4, for all the tasks that I throw at it.


            Again, thank you for your observations,



            • 3. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
              Mika Järvinen

              Time to do quick decisions, eh?


              I purchaced on PrE8 already 3 weeks ago. I got almost every same problem as the original writer of this topic. What happened next?


              Before I was able to even try to look solutions for mediacenter problems, crashes on PrE8 or the edit problems of Canon 7D:s videos we had in our family this media sexy disease, swine flu. Well its not a big issue (if it goes allright) if you live alone and dont get the bad version of the virus. After being sick for over a week (me and 3 child of mine, 2 hospital visits, wife didnt get that for some reason!?) I was able to concentrate on all the problems of PrE8.


              First I researched the media center problem which was easily solved (by renaming), then the graphicscard issue (needed to download latest and turn certain things off), then I optimized PrE8 to work at its best with my old computer. Latest I found how to edit Canon 7D:s quite difficult codec in PrE8.


              All these things I solved with the help of these forums and especially with the help of two or even three very active members of these forums. Maybe you know those names too.


              And whats the meaning for my writing? Perhaps the thing what I want to say is, that you can easily give up and choose something else in video editing and in life too. But is that the thing that brings you forward? In my point of view things are going to be solved, sooner or later. I have been actively asking lots of questions and got some answers. Life isnt easy, including videoediting.


              Thanks for all the active members of this forums all who read this keep up with the good spirit. Giving up easily is not an option. Not good atleast!



              • 4. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                And, of course, you could convert those Canon 7D's videos to a more editable format, as recommended in the FAQs to the right of this forum.

                • 5. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                  BoroMar1 Level 1

                  Itay B. - Sony has a similiar line of consumer and pro video editors as Adobe.  Go to http://www.sonycreativesoftware.com/products/vegasfamily.asp if you want to compare.  I have experience with Vegas Pro (older version) which has been rock solid, but is too complicated for an average user such as my spouse.




                  • 6. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                    BoroMar1 Level 1

                    Thanks for the reply Hunt.  As I mentioned I did find several fixes to the issues I encountered in the forums, which I must say are very helpful.  Nevertheless, my conclusions stand, which is that Adobe could have done better before releasing PrE8.




                    • 7. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                      the_wine_snob Level 9
                      Nevertheless, my conclusions stand, which is that Adobe could have done better before releasing PrE8.


                      You do not appear to be alone. While the jury is still out on PrE 8, it seems that there might well be issues. That Adobe is offering PrE 7, plus a free upgrade to an updated PrE 8 (from other poster's reports), might indicate that Adobe is working on things. I would hope so, as I have been an Adobe users (and satisfied too), since before most of the subscribers on this forum were born. I've made a good living with Adobe products, so I am not as objective, as I probably should be. In the end, it will be interesting to chart the life of PrE 8. Only time will tell.


                      Sorry that you did not have a good experience, but it appears that you have options.


                      Good luck,



                      • 8. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                        BoroMar1 Level 1

                        Mike, I'm sorry to hear about your family catching swine flu - I hope everyone is okay.  I do respect your point of view and efforts to get your solution working.  Nevertheless, as I mentioned for the average user (such as my wife) I don't think it is reasonable for them to have to research forums and call tech support to get an high volume application working on a computer that easily exceeds the minimum specifications.


                        In fact, my concern is what else in PrE8 might have problems.  Unfortunatley, I to have a family which I enjoy spending time with, and I cannot do an extensive test of all functionality that my wife may use in the future.  The last thing I want is to become tech support for Adobe whenever my wife encounters a new issue.  It's bad enough being tech support for my extended family! :-)


                        The fact that I cannot get basic features working such as import from a Sony miniDV camera, or playing of video clips indicates some serious lack of testing on the part of Adobe.


                        I would suggest Adobe should hire the experts on this forum in their next round of testing!  There is no question that the people here are able to discover bugs, and the fact that they have found workarounds is impressive.


                        But, should this really be necessary for a application coming from a top vendor like Adobe, having to rely on the user community to find work arounds for very common bugs that they did not adequately test for?  I really don't think so.


                        With regards to giving up easily, I don't think that is the point of my message.  I could also just be patient and wait for Adobe to release a service patch that will fix these issues.  There are lots of choices, but at this point my choice is to evaluate other consumer video editing solutions.




                        • 9. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                          kkolbo Level 1



                          I empathize with your PE8 experience.  Mine was no better. I purchased the package specifically for evaluation. A consumer application should not require the work and research that a complex old Unix application required to install and make useful. (remember compiling the application for every machine config as part of the install?)  The responses from Adobe Tech support were even less satisfying. These forums were stellar in their support and help.


                          In the end, it left me uncomfortable with the application in its current state.  I have had good products from Adobe.  Photoshop Elements this version is my favorite consumer level photo program after years of preferring another. Other than the now disabled welcome screen application, it rocks.  I hope they do release fixes and bring this version of Elements around.  Many things about it are very good.  I just haven't seen the consumer part of Adobe be very responsive compared to the professional section. (true of many manufacturers)


                          At this point I should reveal that I am not 100% objective.  I am one of the few (single digit) Sony Certified Vegas Trainers world wide.  While not a Sony employee or agent, I clearly have my predjudice showing.  I am also Apple certified, but I like my Vegas Pro. After 25 years in entertainment production, I teach video production classes in a public school along with still producing and consulting on the side. (disclosure complete)

                          Itay B.,    

                          Is Sony Vegas more professional than Premiere Elements? How so?


                          Sony Vegas is a full featured professional NLE and DAW with compositing features and more. It is not fair to compare it with PE, becuase they are not even remotely in the same user or price class. You need to compare it with Premiere Pro and Soundbooth combined with Encore.


                          Sony Vegas Movie Studio is the consumer line comparable to PE.  Personally, if PE functioned better I would consider PE and VMS to both be good tools.  Each with its own strengths and weaknesses. They both have a lot to offer beyond the majority of applications out there in this class. The forum folks here are clearly a strength for PE.


                          Back to BoroMar1,


                          I have been evaluating all the consumer NLEs that I can purchase or find. They run the gamut.  You mentioned Cyberlink's Power Director.  That one is interesting.(read strange interface)  Great for .h264 HD, but works backwards compared to everything you and I are familiar with. I use it when I need to quickly edit stuff from a pocket HD camcorder. It just handles the files better using automatic proxies. There is an update about to come out that will stabilize a couple of problems.  Pinnacle Studio is the easiest I have seen for basic stuff.  It is not as full featured as PE and has reports of some stabiltiy issues, but you might want to consider it. Its interface is clean, simple and very easy to understand and use.


                          As for the Vegas Movie Studio applications.  I would not assume that your wife would find it difficult. I teach Vegas Pro to students all day long.  I have students editing in 10-15 minutes. It is in how you introduce the process.  After that it is much more intuitive than other NLE interfaces. It is not a consumer PHD (Push Here, Dummy) program, but it can be simple to use. Still, it will depend on what your wife likes.


                          I learned a long time ago that there is no one right solution. I have and use a number of competing applications.  It comes down to what does what you need and what feels best for you.  Thank heaven for trials.  I am sure that you will find the right solution for your wife.  Gad, it might be Windows Movie Maker Live.   


                          I appologise to the forum moderators and members.  I make it a point to avoid talking about other manufacturer's applications in a manufacturer's forum.  I find it bad manners but, this discussion was headed that way and did not appear to be in danger of becoming a flame throwing event.

                          • 10. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                            Itay B. Level 1

                            Thanks, Boro and kkolbo.


                            kkolbo, your posting was interesting.

                            • 11. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                              BoroMar1 Level 1

                              kkolbo - I appreciate your frank and objective feedback.  I know that PE8 has great potential once these issues are resolved.  And maybe I will finish my evalution with the suggested fixes, even though I would still be worried about other unknown issues.


                              At the same time, I do want to test some of the other packages to how they compare for stability, features and ease of use.


                              So to confirm, you are quite happy with PE8 with regards to stability after the suggested fixes were implemented?




                              • 12. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                                kkolbo Level 1

                                So to confirm, you are quite happy with PE8 with regards to stability after the suggested fixes were implemented?


                                I have not seen any fixes yet.  I am still concerned with what might be lurking. I have no way to know what its stability might be after it is fixed. If fixed, it has potiential.  Will it become my favorite over Vegas?  For most things doubtful.  I will have to teach it though and some people prefer it. First I would like to see it stabilized.



                                • 13. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                                  Mika Järvinen Level 1

                                  I totally see your point and I agree: there is no point of being Adobes tech support. And yes, I want to spend time with my family also; not behind the computer screen.


                                  My main point is only that in windows world there is allways problems, and in video editing even more. I have tried and used several video editing softwares including Pinnacles, Power Director, Sony Vegas. And with all of them I have had different kind of problems (Forinstance Pinnacle besides has being very unstable for me can not understand 50fps video and render it right when overcranking). Being able to edit without having major trouble has allways included searching the web for solutions. I can admit that PrE8 had at start more problems thant expected, but after those being solved I have really  enjoyed this program editing with. And that pleasure, makes me to write this.


                                  If I would need to recommend an easy way to edit video I would definately recommend bying Mac and Final Cut Express or even Pro. Those who has done that has not looked back for windows world when concerning video editing.


                                  But I hope I am wrong, and someone proves it. I don't mind admitting when I am wrong but I fear that there is no problem free customer video editing software available. Atleast for windows.




                                  ps. And thanks Steve in helps earlier. I did found out that converting 7D:s videos is the "needed" thing to do when editing that material. And right in this moment NeoScene seem to handle that thing best. It's only problem its cost but it really does the job. Even my old computer can now fluently and reliably edit FullHD video!

                                  • 14. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                                    paulgoelz Level 1

                                    I'm reading this thread with interest.  I own PE4 and PE7 and struggled with both for a long time before giving up and buying a copy of Vegas Movie Studio. In my experience, when used to edit HD video, both PE versions have serious/terminal issues when editing projects longer than maybe 30 minutes, even on a 64 bit OS with plenty of RAM and HD space.  This is NOT simply because I am editing HD video as opposed to SD...... using the exact same HD source files, I can edit and render a FOUR HOUR HD project in Sony Vegas Studio 4.5 and the program and PC never even blink. And before you ask, rendered to an 8Mb/S stream, this will fit on a BluRay disk with minimal quality degradation.


                                    While Vegas Movie Studio is now my editor of choice, I would really like to come back to PE if it ever stabilizes and becomes usable for editing a BluRay's worth of HD video.  PE has a couple features that are (incredibly) missing on Vegas (the ability to automatically add chapter markers and the ability to burn a BluRay with menus are two near show stoppers). But for PE, this would appear to require we wait until they release a 64 bit version?



                                    • 15. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8

                                      I stupidly bought PE8, I saw the reviews (which were good) and looked over the apps (which seemed great) gave me options my other video editing programs didn't have (Power Director, Video Explosion, etc) and then waited excitedly for my new program to arrive (I bought a physical copy).


                                      I have had the program for 24 hours now, have spend more time on the phone and online with customer service than I have using the actual program and my problems still aren't solved! I have a similar set-up as you do, I have a XPS system, running Windows XP professional, the GeForce 8800, 1TB of memory, and 4GB of RAM, and all the other bells and whistles that make for a fast, sweet machine.


                                      I can render high quality video with my other programs at twice the actual running time, but when rending video in PE8 it's slooooooow, about twice the run time of the video, no matter what quality of video I'm rendering, MPEG2 or AVI or whatever, it's slow. After reading your post, I now know it isn't my computer it's the program.


                                      Added to my problems that I can't figure out is why when rendering video as an MPEG2, the audio cuts out after 30 seconds. Now the audio track is still there, and if I stop the video and restart it and go to another spot in the video it will run for another 30 seconds, then audio again cuts out, I can then stop it again, hit play again and then advance several times forward and the audio will play, and then cut out after 30 seconds. I have absolutely no idea of why or how to fix it, and have been on the phone with tech support since yesterday about it, so far I have been passed from person to person and then told to wait for them to call me this afternoon with a solution, but I never received the call, I'm still waiting.


                                      I also can't access the tutorials, because my computer doesn't go online, at all. I had it custom built and there is no port for internet or wi-fi or anyway at all for me to get internet on it, I have laptops if I want to cruise the internet, this one is for work. After trying to find the tutorials online (without the program installed on my laptop) I called customer service to find out where I could get a copy of it, I was told that I had to put my computer online. We had a long discussion about how that was not possible, and without a tutorial explaining how to use the features their program was useless to me. I was sent to tech support, where I talked to one of the same techs as yesterday who told me to have internet installed on my computer. I told him again...no! Finally, he conceded that there was a link I could use to access the tutorials and he would send it to my email, it would arrive within 15 minutes. I got off the phone and now 7 hours later...I'm still waiting for my link.


                                      But I did get an email saying that the problems with my audio was fixed and they closed that case. Interesting, since the problem is still there and I have yet to hear from tech support about it.


                                      Nope...I can't say that I am impressed at all.

                                      • 16. Re: My Experience Evaluating PE8
                                        the_wine_snob Level 9

                                        Rather than posting to another thread, you might get a lot more help if you initiate a separate post.


                                        In that, please outline your system and the exact problems. This ARTICLE will help you find out what is helpful.


                                        As we are all just users here, we cannot help you with Adobe. They sponsor this forum, but that is where their interaction ends. Most of us have felt your frustrations, at one time, or another, and with many different software companies. We cannot help you there.


                                        OTOH, we can likely help you with your issues, so long as we know what we're dealing with.


                                        Good luck, and we'll be looking for your post,