Quicktime plays a vital role in a number video editing functions, primarily when you're working with MOV video and video which uses H.264 compression, like .mp4s and AVCHD.
I don't know its role with non-Quicktime sources, like DV-AVIs and MPEGs. All I know is that having it and keeping it updated often solves a number of functionality issues.
Don't confuse Quicktime with Quicktime Pro. Quicktime is free. Quicktime Pro includes a video editor and the ability to convert to a number of other formats. It's a great tool, but all you need is the free Quicktime player to support Premiere Elements.
As Steve mentions, Apple's QT Player provides some necessary CODEC's, but one can get many of those, such as H.264 from other sources, such as Lead, or MainConcept. With MOV files, there are some other possible CODEC's, such as PhotoJPEG, PhotoJPEG 2000, and Animation, that are also installed with QT Player.
For MPEG-2, and DV-AVI, it should not be required, and some users do not have QT Player installed, but have the necessary CODEC's from other sources. Seems that ATR is one such user. Same for PrPro, which also relies on those QT Player CODEC's, but have opted for the necessary CODEC's from other sources.
It's been too long ago, that I used MPEGStreamClip, or any such utility, that I cannot recall exactly what I used. I never did use the QT Alternative, as many reported issues with it. Still, too long ago to remember exactly what I did, or did not use.
Steve and Bill,
Thanks for the quick response. My first impression from what you are saying is that for basic purposes a guy might not need Quicktime. Because of all the questions you get from others in this forum, I gather that for their purposes it's almost a requirement depending on what they want to input into a program. I would be nice to know what PrE7, 8, 9, 10 will do "stand alone" so to speak. Nothing else required to put out video. Then go from there if you want to put some other flavor of video into the program.
Hopefully some one else will have some additional input as to when Quicktime is necessary. If anything improves the bad quality of old VHS it's worth using.
As it's listed on both the box and the web site as a system requirement, I would not use the program without it. Especially when I've seen buggy behavior when it's not present and up to date. And it's free.
As all of my computers have QT Player (actually upgraded to the Pro versions), I cannot even test a non-QT installation, to see how well, or poorly, PrE performs without QT Player.
I wish that I could remember AT Romano's comments, as I am almost positive that he had at least one machine without QT Player, and for most of what he was doing, did not find the absence to be a limitation. Maybe he'll drop by, and can comment, or at least refresh my failing memory.
As for VHS tapes to digital Video, I use the Canopus/Grass Valley 300 A-D unit, hooked to my Panasonic VHS/DVD/DVR unit, and it allows me to Capture from VHS very, very well. Now, I use PrPro for the Capture, but the module is almost identical between PrE and PrPro. I do a bit of TimeBase correction in the Canopus, and then use various Effects to do the final "cleanup." Normally, I use Levels (do not use Auto Levels, and am not sure if PrE has added the "manual" version of that Effect?), Highlight & Shadow (with Auto turned OFF) and then usually Fast Color Corrector. Where the shooter was faced with low-light situations, I will use Neat Video to remove most of the Video Noise in the tape's Captured DV-AVI. That is an add-on Effect, and works fine, although it IS slow to Render.
Just finished a set of Projects with 37 very old VHS tapes, that had been poorly stored over the decades. The results were surprisingly good, at least to me, and to the client. Fortunately, the camera used was quite good, with an excellent lens, so most of the tapes were pretty good, to start. Still, each needed some tweaking in Premiere, to get the best results. Also, where there were any tracking errors, I just did a little Scale to effectively "crop" the distortions out of the Frame - usually at the very bottom. The mode used to record was all over the board from SP to LP and even some EP material. The EP footage was obviously the hardest to get looking good, but was still possible. The vast majority of the added Effects were the "manual" versions in PrPro, so required some additional work, but with much more control, over the results.
So then for people who are wondering, do you guys use Quicktime Pro? If I use Quicktime instead of alternative, buy the plug in so that I can use Streamclip? Go ahead and use Quicktime alternative 1.81 and Streamclip. Tough question as you guys are well past the basics, but was wondering what you have experimented with.
And, of course, when you're working with video from VHS tapes, there's much to be said for using the right device to digitize them in the first place!
Somewhat Greek to me but glad for the VHS input. I also have a Panasonic and originally put directly on DVD in the unit which was a wreck, but the unit seems excellent. Then I bought the Pyro AV Link and input that way. Not sure what I would need to do TimeBase correction for. (I'm sure you've explained that before) but don't think the Pyro will do that. Levels, Highlight and Shadow, and Fast color Corrector must be called something else in Premiere Elements. Sounds really good though, more along the lines of what I would like to accomplish. I did notice the tracking thing at the bottom of the Capture/Monitor Panels, but because it seemed to be outside of the viewing area on a TV never seems to show up when playing a DVD. Good to know about the slight crop though. We should have never used EP back in the old days, but tapes were Soooo! expensive
This is getting to be an out of sync chat, eh?
I also have a Panasonic and originally put directly on DVD in the unit which was a wreck, but the unit seems excellent.
I agree. With nearly all DVR units, the first VOB will not be directly usable in PrE (or PrPro either), as the unit writes rudimentary navigation and a basic Menu, which are NOT 100% DVD-compliant. I only use that part of the deck to make an archival DVD-Video for the client, and NOT to edit from. Unfortunately, and like many (most?) DVR's, the discs are not playable in all set-top DVD players - that non-DVD-spec. first VOB again. However, the discs DO play on a computer's multi-drive w/ DVD software players.
I know that PrE 10 has added some Effects (and reworked a few more), but back in PrE 4.0, the only options were the "Auto" Effects for Levels and Highlight & Shadow. PrE 10 has added a Color Correction Effect, that has manual settings, but do not know how it compares to the Fast Color Corrector (or the other two CC Effects) in PrPro.
This is just personal observations, but I find that the Auto Effects only work, when everything else, say Gamma/Exposure and lighting are constant, and do not change. Otherwise, and sort of like the early auto aperture exposure functions on cameras, there is a "pulsing" or "seeking" look, when they are applied. I have filed Feature Requests for more "manual" Effects in PrE, going back to PrE 4.0. However, Adobe must feel that most users will like the Auto versions better - just not me.
Well, the exact topic might be deviating, but then maybe not THAT much. After all, you asked about QT Player, and the role that it played in PrE. I feel that your question was predicated on your usage of PrE, and that is where the discussion has gone - your usage of the program. Hopefully, and in the end, it will be your usage that matters, and that is what we try to do here - get people editing their Projects most effectively.
Good luck, and happy editing,
Guess I am going to have to do some more experimenting. I have played around with some of the Auto Color, sharpen, and other manual settings in PrE, but I don't think I had the proper project presets for the video I was working with. These effects also play into my question of whether or not Quicktime or QT Alternative will help produce better video, or not make any difference if it is only a player. If it is more than a player, and actually makes a difference in the video will be interesting. Wish somebody already could tell me there is a difference or how QT really works in the program. I know guys have said some versions/updates of QT had issues. Time will tell.