30 Replies Latest reply on Dec 20, 2010 12:14 PM by the_wine_snob

    Instruction manual.

    THX1142a

      I finally figured out the core problem I am naving with Premiere Elements 9:

       

      The software is quite complicated and robust, is not really all that intuitive (menu bar, etc. is rather unique) and there is no instruction manual.

       

      As soon as I bought it, I noticed there was no hard-copy manual, but I was not too worried. I thought I'd just register the software and then get all the help I needed. I figured I could always download a PDF, like I did with any piece of Behringer harware I purchased. Nope. couldn't find one. And when I try to go to all the help areas and maybe download a tutorial, I keep coming to pages where I can PURCHASE training.

       

      Uh, no.

       

      So, rant over. I am sure there is a place, somewhere in the maze of information offered for this product, where I can either read or download detailed instructions (with pictures) regarding how to use the product. That way I don't have to do a search and post (and modest hair pulling) here every time I have the smallest problem. Heck, now that I figured out how to get my mjpegs to work, the first thing I notice is that timeline and sceneline don't match. And this is five minutes after trying to get started again. And yes, I came here and searched and found a thread on it, though it still doesn't answer my question. Maybe if I search another few threads or categories, I'll get it resolved sometime today, and can go on to step TWO of getting a video put together.

       

      It's like trying to drive down a 70mph freeway with a traffic light every 200 feet.

        • 2. Re: Instruction manual.
          THX1142a Level 1

          Thanks. I saw that when I first registered, but thought there was a manual I could use on my computer and perhaps print off. I don't always have internet access. I thought there might be a searchable document. Yes, that is searchable, but it messes with my binary mind. When I search and come up with hits outside the manual, I go into, "No, I don't want an internet search. I want a search within this document." mode, and ignore the results. When I am looking at a elements "9" document, I don't expect to get elements "7" hits.

           

          But to be fair, we joke at work that the best way to get help with microsoft office applications is to do a google search. It is amazing how you can use the specifict words you want and often cannot find what you are looking for in office help, yet the same words in google search get you to exactly what you were looking for.

           

          After seeing the document you referred me to, I thought I was looking at the same issue here. Problem is that there aren't as many premiere elements 9 users as there are MS Office users.

           

          Sorry, I'm thinking as I type this. It looks like you have given me what I need and I just need to spend a few days there.

           

          Thanks!

          • 3. Re: Instruction manual.
            nealeh Level 5

            I think you are being a little over harsh. Just by pressing the [F1] key (you know - the one that means HELP in just about every software application in existence) brings up:

             

            3.png

             

            And note the arrow I've added pointing you to the downloadable 23MB help manual.

             

            Also note that the web link for PRE9 Help  is http://help.adobe.com/en_US/premiereelements/using/index.html , (the one you were referred to before was for PRE8). That too looks like this:

             

            1.png

             

            and again, the arrow I've added shows the link to the downloadable manual.

             

             

            Cheers,
            --
            Neale
            Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children

            1 person found this helpful
            • 4. Re: Instruction manual.
              the_wine_snob Level 9

              Also see the rec. and link to Steve Grisetti's great books on PrE, at the tail of the other thread.

               

              One of the best, most useful books available.

               

              Good luck,

               

              Hunt

              • 5. Re: Instruction manual.
                Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                Thanks for the endorsement, Bill!

                 

                My books are based on the 6 years I've spent hosting this forum and the one on Premiere Elements support site Muvipix.com.

                 

                You can find out more information about the program on the site.

                 

                Type "Basic Training" in the product search box and you'll see some of the tutorials we've created. We've also got more specific tutorials too, if there's something more specific you want to know.

                 

                And, of course, my books will tell how about virtually every tool in the program and how to use it. And if you have a specific question about the book, you know right where to find me!

                • 6. Re: Instruction manual.
                  the_wine_snob Level 9

                  I also hear, that when the snows melt, the author will travel to a purchaser's front door to do an autograph session...

                   

                  Stay warm,

                   

                  Hunt

                  • 7. Re: Instruction manual.
                    Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                    Actually, I wish I could drop by each buyer's house and help them get up and running before handing them a copy of my book.

                     

                    But that would probably add an awful lot to the cover  price!

                    • 8. Re: Instruction manual.
                      John T Smith Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                      >drop by each buyer's house

                       

                      Well, I'm not going to watch it, but Netflix shows a movie about Santa's daughter... played by Jenny McCarthy

                       

                      Maybe you could get her to borrow her father's magic sleigh to rush you all over... you would at least have a nice driver!

                      • 9. Re: Instruction manual.
                        Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                        Works for me, John!

                        • 10. Re: Instruction manual.
                          the_wine_snob Level 9

                          John T.,

                           

                          I had to Google Jenny McCarthy. My first thought was Jeana Jamison, but knew that could not be correct...

                           

                          Hunt

                          • 11. Re: Instruction manual.
                            THX1142a Level 1

                            Yeah, F1.


                            The software has been mixing down a DVD for the last few hours but as soon as it's done I'm gonna check out the downloadable version. The online help is nice and all, and if it is all there is, I can make it work.

                             

                            It's funny how I forget that F1 can get me out of a bind. I rarely need it. Normally I'm the one everyone is coming to for software help. I was the only one that embraced the new Microsoft office at work. You know the one, where they pretty much redesigned the UI. I'm no fan of MS, but I use it a lot in my job, so if I'm gonna need to learn it, I'm gonna want to be an expert.

                             

                            I'm fighting with it here, because I don't absolutely have to use this software, but the results are fun.

                             

                            BTW, I became pretty darned good at Microsoft PhotoDraw, and it is STILL what I use for photos. A friend loaned me a sample copy of Photoshop, and it was just too hard to use, for my purposes, espectially since I was so familiar with the other software. Well, that and the fact that it was bootlegged. I deleted it. However, my friend does graphic design for a living and he loves Photoshop, for obvious reasons.

                             

                            To be clear, Adobe was very effective at getting me to the stuff in your screen prints right after I installed it. I was just looking for something "quicker".

                             

                            It has, just since you guys pointed out that it is "it", become my rosettastone.

                            • 12. Re: Instruction manual.
                              the_wine_snob Level 9

                              Now, I am a "book person," so am less a fan of the Web-based Help, but Adobe makes a good point, that they can do addenda quickly, with that. Still, I like to fly with a few manuals in the briefcase - old-timer for sure.

                               

                              Good luck,

                               

                              Hunt

                              • 13. Re: Instruction manual.
                                THX1142a Level 1

                                Short epilogue.

                                 

                                I accidentally created a "web dvd" instead of burning a DVD. Since it took approximately 5 hours to do this, I thought I'd transfer the "web DVD" directly to a disk. So I decided to go into help and search things like "transfer web dvd" or something like that. Except when I press F1 or click on the first option under help, the arrow gets a little hourglass next to it for about half a second, then the hourglass disappears, and, then, nothing. So I closed and restarted the software again. Nothing.

                                 

                                At least I bookmarked the same help in firefox so I'm not high and dry. But I confess that this is a first for me - help no longer functioning...

                                • 14. Re: Instruction manual.
                                  THX1142a Level 1

                                  I spent the entire weekend on this and I produced squat. I'm not complaining. Just observing. The raw fact does belong in the mix.

                                   

                                   

                                  Folks please don't pounce on me for bringing up the information below. I just need to share what is spinning through my mind regarding this, from a philosophical perspective.

                                   

                                  I discovered Windows Moviemaker and, four hours after the point I discovered it, I had completed this much of a partial video:

                                   

                                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJKSEwR8K5s

                                   

                                  I stopped midway for several reasons. First, I wanted to get permission to use the music and second, I was expecting a couple hundred more pictures to come in from a friend. And last, I thought I'd use Premiere 9 to make a "real" quality copy. I considered it throw away. No, it's nothing great, and there is some repetition, but it is the first attempt in my life at doing any video editing. And it was four hours from the time I discovered the software with which I made it to the time I got a successful load to youtube. This includes figuring out how to use it.

                                   

                                  I won't have another time window to work on this or any other video project for quite a while, but it was an "interesting" attempt this weekend. Kind of a bummer since I have five projects in the queue and I thought I could get three done this weekend. At least I'll see If I can drag a video in and burn a dvd when it finishes sometime tonight.

                                   

                                  Good night.

                                  • 15. Re: Instruction manual.
                                    nealeh Level 5

                                    Nice. I'll bookmark that as an example of what WMM can do (it often gets sneered at, but it is pretty good considering it's free. Did you use the 2.0, the 2.6 or Windows Live version?

                                     

                                    Cheers,
                                    --
                                    Neale
                                    Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children

                                    • 16. Re: Instruction manual.
                                      nealeh Level 5

                                      Oops - I'd only viewed the first minute of your video (my Internet connection comes in at only 900kbs ). The rest downloaded while I was writing my congratulations.

                                       

                                      So I started to play it all. At 1 minute 52 seconds the video disappears, although the audio continues for the whole duration.

                                       

                                      Cheers,
                                      --
                                      Neale
                                      Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children

                                      • 17. Re: Instruction manual.
                                        Steve Grisetti Adobe Community Professional

                                        That would be interesting too, Bill!

                                        • 18. Re: Instruction manual.
                                          THX1142a Level 1

                                          About the music. I built the video horizontally the way you would build a skiscraper vertically. That is, I put the first sont in and then added my video. The idea was to get a fast flash of pictures to give a "feeling" of wha is there. then slow down into the tempo of the video. I put the entire first song in and then when it was time for the road trip part, I cut off the song and added the second song, which starts slow, and then gets into an almost "slowly mechanical" tempo, perfect for some even spaced transitions.

                                           

                                          But When I stopped working on it, I literally just STOPPED. It means you get the second song in its entirety, even though there are no pictures.

                                           

                                          The whole video was done specifically to learn the software - How little time can I spend on an image? Can I remove the video soundtrack? How do you transition? Can I time the videos to the music? How good is the quality of the final mixdown?

                                           

                                          I found all that out and more, and was hoping to use the skills in Premiere elements. I can use some. The interface is similar, for example. But some things are harder to do - like transitions. With WMM you can create a fade transition by simply dragging the latter image/video over the former, and a horizontal blue bar appears and becomes a "wedge" in thve overlap area, helping you to see how long the transition is. It is absurdly simple. But it is not as robust.

                                           

                                          WMM is to Premiere elements what choosing an automatic transmission is to manual in one of those computer driving games. It gets you around the track pretty fast, but it is for amateurs. If you want to ramp it up, or even win, the manual transmission is required.

                                           

                                          I got my "high quality" dvd to burn last night. But the quality on my TV and computer is vhs grade. I'll have to play with that, using small sources. Everything I do with the product now is for the purpose of learning, as opposed to actually producing anything useful. That will come later.

                                           

                                          Oh, the reason I didn't see my help screen is that it is not internal, but a web page, and since I already had 15 tabs open in Firefox, I failed to notice the web page it had opened. I didn't find it until I was cleaning up everything to speed up the video transfer.

                                           

                                          Back to the original topic, I'm going to be doing a lot of reading. I'll be flying a lot the next few weeks. I needed a hardcopy except I remembered that most of the planes have wifi now.

                                          • 19. Re: Instruction manual.
                                            THX1142a Level 1

                                            Re: WMM version. Version 5.1

                                             

                                            I did have to use the internet to get help with it, but it was pretty fast and easy. I get a feeling a LOT of people use it and they had the same problems I did. In looking at other people's problems, I did discover that the live version seems to have removed some important functionality. Apparently it is what ships with Windows Vista.

                                            • 20. Re: Instruction manual.
                                              THX1142a Level 1

                                              >>Oops - I'd only viewed the first minute of your video (my Internet connection comes in at only 900kbs ). The rest downloaded while I was writing my congratulations.<<

                                               

                                              I cancelled Comcast and use the WiFi from the business across the street. I don't do TV (since the late 90's) and my comcast was $75 a month. That is just bad stewardship when it is available legally for free. But they do limit it somewhat. Even though it says my connection is 54 mb, to watch youtube videos, I select them, hit pause, and come back a few minutes later to actually watch them.

                                               

                                              When I use VPN for work it's not an issue. I don't need that much bandwidth for email and office products.

                                              • 21. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                nealeh Level 5

                                                I always recommend Windows Movie Maker 2.6 Although described as a 'Vista' version, it works with XP, Vista, and W7 both 32 & 64-bit versions. It also allows for the export of DV-AVI Type 2 footage - ideal for PRE.

                                                 

                                                Cheers,
                                                --
                                                Neale
                                                Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children

                                                • 22. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                  THX1142a Level 1

                                                  >>...but it is pretty good considering it's free.<<

                                                   

                                                  Yeah, maybe that is why I cut it more slack. I really don't buy much software, so when I do, I'm pretty finicky, especially since I used to write code and have do deal with various qualities of developers these days. I've seen, firsthand, bad software sold for a fortune (I'm talking corporate software, so we're talking millions of $$$). I just started training a contractor who actually worked at a company who's software we finally bailed on, and discovered that all the problems we were having were due to the "C" team working it for us. We thought maybe we were being too picky.

                                                   

                                                  It is the question I always ask when using challenging software: Is it the software, or is it me? Eventually I come to a final conclusion and either apoligise all over the place for my "harshness", or I dump the software and explain exactly why it did not meet requiremnts. The jury is still out for Premiere elements, but I definitely think at least part of it is me. Severaly people on this thread have given valid and logical reasons for why I am having the problems I am having.

                                                   

                                                  And let's not kid ourselves. The simple fact that this forum is here and people were responding to me ON A SUNDAY, is a huge plus. And I sincerely appreciate it.

                                                  • 23. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                    THX1142a Level 1

                                                    >>It also allows for the export of DV-AVI Type 2 footage<<

                                                     

                                                    One of the main issues I'm trying to get resolved (and was working with WMM before I moved on) is to find out how to nail the output format. That is, overall video quality and correct aspect ratio. Ideally, I woudl have liked to see a simple drop down list of 1080P, 780P, 1080I, etc. Instead it is, to say the least, convoluted, probably becuase there are nuances that require it to be. I need to understand the relevance of the nuances.

                                                     

                                                    And then there is aspect ratio. Even with our DVD player and TV it can be a challenge sometimes. One of my pet pieves in life is seeing in homes and bars a wide screen tv playing a 4x3 picture stretched across the full width - I like round things to look round, not football shaped.

                                                     

                                                    The quality of my one video that I put on dvd was horrible, even though the original source was sharp. I had picked the HD output quality, but there must have been some background setting I missed. I'll keep playing with it. I'll probably burn throug a few dozen discs before I figure it all out.

                                                     

                                                    My one biggest challenge in this whole thing is my learning style: I learn by doing, not reading. I am very much a kinetic learner.

                                                    • 24. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                      nealeh Level 5

                                                      THX1142a wrote:

                                                       

                                                      The quality of my one video that I put on dvd was horrible, even though the original source was sharp. I had picked the HD output quality, but there must have been some background setting I missed.

                                                       

                                                      DVD is 720x480 NTSC or 720x576 PAL. These are fixed standards so trying to output an HD picture is going to force PRE to downsize. Frankly PRE's downsizing is not all that great - so it is much better to feed it images (video or stills) where it doesn't have to apply too much downsizing.

                                                       

                                                      THX1142a wrote:

                                                       

                                                      I'll probably burn throug a few dozen discs before I figure it all out.

                                                       

                                                      Use Re-Writeables - by far the cheaper option for testing. Use good quality (e.g. Verbatim) mdeia for final output.

                                                       

                                                      Cheers,
                                                      --
                                                      Neale
                                                      Insanity is hereditary, you get it from your children

                                                      • 25. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                        THX1142a Level 1

                                                        nealeh wrote:

                                                         


                                                        DVD is 720x480 NTSC or 720x576 PAL.

                                                         

                                                        Just getting that one simple piece of information as reliable fact is a big deal. Thanks.

                                                         

                                                        The rest of your post makes me think of people around my office that don't use the native resolution of their monitors. They are amazed at how sharp their text is when I show them the error of their ways. Yeah, smaller, yet sharper, and easier to read.

                                                         

                                                        I've never, ever used a rewritable, even for CD's. I've still got several in shrink wrap from the last decade of hardware I've purchased. The others are so cheap it's like throwing away dimes. All of this is a "time vs money" thing for me. Also, I started not trusting the technology, and as discs got cheaper it became a non-issue. I need to look into the re-writables. If they are as easy to rewrite as the others are to write, well, a dime's a dime. And then there is the wasted plastic. I hate doing that.

                                                        • 26. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                          the_wine_snob Level 9

                                                          I also use the RW discs, to test on several different players, when doing commercial jobs. That saves a lot of "coasters." First, I Burn to Folder, and then use a DVD software player to test. That usually reveals most problems. Next, I'll use a great, free utility, ImgBurn, to do the physical Burn to Disc, and use the RW discs. I've got a half-dozen different players, from a bargain-basement US$49 unit, up to a very high-end esoteric. If that RW plays in all, I then commit to whatever number the client wants.

                                                           

                                                          One tip, for delivery, ONLY use the best blank media. I rely on Taiyo-Yuden for DVD-5's (4.7GB) and Verbatim for DVD-9's (8.5GB DL). I have never had one disc returned. I also will burn at less than max speed. PrE does the setting of the burn speed automatically, and goes for as fast, as is possible, with the burner and media. ImgBurn (or my Adobe Encore) will let one drop the burn speed down - another reason to use ImgBurn for the physical burning.

                                                           

                                                          Good luck,

                                                           

                                                          Hunt

                                                          • 27. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                            THX1142a Level 1
                                                            ImgBurn (or my Adobe Encore) will let one drop the burn speed down - another reason to use ImgBurn for the physical burning.

                                                             

                                                            Good luck,

                                                             

                                                            Hunt

                                                            This is where my eyes gloss over. With CD's, I usually work with files, even when producing music cd's. And I burn less and less of them, except for the stuff for my band. But with DVD's, we are talking about specific files and file types and...well, let me put it this way - when I took all the files in my "web dvd" folder that I accidentally "burned" yesterday and burned them onto a DVD, it was not playable, by any hardware. DVD's require certain data file attributes that I am not aware of.

                                                             

                                                            So, once I have a project saved by PrE, If I were to open up another piece of software to burn it to a DVD, I would not know what to pull in, other than to bring everything in as simple files. I tried that with Nero and it wants me to create a project there.

                                                             

                                                            But I see you do this in your occupation, so this may all be very basic stuff. I just don't know it yet.

                                                            • 28. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                              the_wine_snob Level 9

                                                              Basically, we are dealing with two types of DVD here: DVD-Data (like storing files on a CD), and DVD-Video, which is very, very specific.

                                                               

                                                              In PrE, if one wants to burn a DVD-Video, one would first Burn to Folder (on their HDD). This creates the VIDEO_TS folder w/ the necessary files inside of that. Then, one can use a utility, like ImgBurn, to burn that VIDEO_TS folder, intact, to the blank disc. That disc will then be the same as if one did the burn directly from PrE.

                                                               

                                                              For some background on the DVD-specs., the link in this ARTICLE will reveal everything that you could ever want to know - and then some.

                                                               

                                                              Good luck, and hope that this helps,

                                                               

                                                              Hunt

                                                              • 29. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                                THX1142a Level 1

                                                                Just giving me the significance of the Video_ts folder gave me the "hook" to discover the importance of an empty Audio_ts file and other critical information. Plus the link you gave didn't hurt.

                                                                 

                                                                Thanks!

                                                                • 30. Re: Instruction manual.
                                                                  the_wine_snob Level 9

                                                                  The empty AUDIO_TS folder is a bit of a holdover. Originally, the specs. were written for both DVD-Video and DVD-Audio. Some older DVD players DO need to see the AUDIO_TS folder, though it's usually empty. DVD-Audio is still alive, but is seen far, far less, than DVD-Video. Some authoring programs still write the empty AUDIO_TS folder.

                                                                   

                                                                  If a user has an older player, that does require the AUDIO_TS folder, the simple workaround is to Burn to Folder from PrE, then in that location, add an empty folder, AUDIO_TS to the root. Burn those to a blank disc in ImgBurn, or similar. I think that Roxio still writes the AUDIO_TS folder, but then it;s been a very long time, since I last used that program, or Nero, for that matter.

                                                                   

                                                                  While Jim Taylor's Web site (in that above link) is great, if one really wants to get into CD/DVD/BD, at the ground floor, I highly recommend his book, DVD Demystified. It's long, but covers everything, and even provides a developmental timeline, showing the various evolutionary dead-ends. He also provides some insight into the in-fighting on the specs., and explains why we have some of the specs., that we do. Doesn't quite read like a good thriller, but is an excellent reference, and there is that "in-fighting... "

                                                                   

                                                                  Talking about a "manual," since DVD/BD is often an end product with PrE, think about a multi-1000 page book, just on those little shiny discs!

                                                                   

                                                                  Good luck,

                                                                   

                                                                  Hunt