I am really enjoying using Premiere Pro CC 2014. If you had told me 3 years ago that I would be singing the praises of Premiere, I would have laughed and said no way. However, after having fully made the switch and having edited a good number of projects with the CS6 and CC versions, I am a convert. It is now my preferred choice of NLE’s and the more I use it, the more I like it. I really like how it handles file based media like P2 and XDCAM natively and can even handle H.264 media. I recently worked on a project which I will elaborate on in a subsequent post, that had a very short turnaround time, and I don’t think I would have been able to complete it as quickly as I did with Avid or Final Cut Pro 7 (I am still not using FCP X). The footage was shot on multiple formats, including XDCAM, ProRes, and some footage I shot using my 5D Mark III. I did transcode the H.264 files but the rest was just imported natively and I was quickly able to start editing. The slowest part of the process was copying the files off the cards.
I also like the integration of the other CC programs like Photoshop and After Effects and I am learning how to use Audition for smoothing out the sound. Media Encoder has replaced Compressor for me – it’s great to cue up an output and keep working in Premiere and it also works well for transcoding batches of files and making multiple versions. I still like Handbrake but I’m using it less and less as I get more proficient with AME. While Davinci Resolve is my color correcting app of choice, I am also learning SpeedGrade so I can take advantage of its connection with the other programs.
Another plus of the CC bundle is that with the 2 seats I get with my subscription (which I really think is a great pricing model despite what others say), I have it on My Mac and on My Dell PC and my settings are always in sync. The Creative Cloud software has been a great upgrade for my Dell system, which has 2 NVIDIA cards and accelerates those programs with CUDA.
Premiere is also gaining reputation as a serious contender to Avid’s lock on feature films. David Fincer recently posted his film “Gone Girl” with Premiere. Here is a link to a Studio Daily article about some aspects of the workflow: http://www.studiodaily.com/2014/08/inside-gone-girls-6k-review-and-editorial-pipeline/
I’m sure we will hear about more projects using Adobe Creative Cloud.
Recently I worked on videos for Time-Life about Wolfgang Puck’s new Pressure Oven. It was a great experience working with Mr. Puck, shooting the videos at his world-famous restaurant, Spago, in Beverly Hills.
He is a real pro at doing demos and was very fun to work with. Along with editing 12 videos, I was B Cameraman using my Blackmagic Cinema Camera.
The primary footage which was shot on a Panasonic HPX-3700. I am very pleased with how the BMCC footage came out and integrated with the 3700 footage.
Click below to view one of the videos:
Wolfgang Puck’s Rotisserie Chicken Video
I shot RAW Cinema DNG and used DaVinci running on my Dell Precision T5500 to create footage and cut the segments using Final Cut Pro 7 on a MacPro. This will probably be the last job I cut with FCP7, as I am making the transition full time to cutting in Premiere Pro CC or Avid Symphony. I have been using Premiere and Avid on both PC and Mac platforms and I am not missing FCP7 at all… The Tesla card in the Dell really makes DaVinci work great and is so much faster than using a MacPro for creating dailies and finished footage. I am currently using Premiere Pro CC to edit a national spot for Euro-Pro and will have a report on that experience soon!
Here are additional videos that I edited:
How The Wolfgang Puck Pressure Oven Works!
Wolfgang Puck’s Pressure Oven Cooks Food Faster!
Wolfgang Puck’s Pressure Oven Makes Entertaining Easier!
Wolfgang Puck’s Pressure Oven Can Roast, Bake, and Rotisserie!
Wolfgang Puck’s Pressure Oven Bakes The Perfect Cinnamon Rolls!
Here is the first Tommy Collins’ Fashion Shots show, that I cut on Premiere CS6 and AE CS6 on the Dell Precision T5500:
Here’s “Tommy Collins’ Fashion Shots” Show #2 Olympic Wrap-up
I cut this using Premier CS6 and AE CS6 on the Dell Precision T5500:
I finally had a chance to use the Dell system on a project that I felt would be a good test of the capabilities of Premiere and After Effects. Plus I had just upgraded to Adobe Production Premium CS6 and was itching to give it a try. I edited a promotional video for PFLAG’s Care with PRIDE™, a new campaign in partnership with Johnson & Johnson and Walgreens to help support their “Cultivating Respect: Safe Schools for All Initiative” and the work being done by PFLAG chapters in their communities.
This multi-pronged campaign will help earn PFLAG a minimum of $200,000 to support their work, including efforts in communities to work directly with schools providing support, resources, training, model policy and creative programs to create an environment of respect for all children.
The video stars Betty DeGeneres, Ellen’s mom, who is involved with PFLAG, which promotes the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons, their families and friends.
The spot was shot by Matt Alcorn, a great D.P. and owner of Image River Films, who we use when for many of our productions. The piece was shot using his Panasonic 3700 P2 camera, and using Premiere, I was able to quickly create a new project without trans-coding and start to edit right away. I had a rough cut done quickly and went to to get the stills I needed. I really like how I can cut in a picture then create an after effects comp right in the timeline and it opens up after effects and links to the new comp. With the help of our graphics wizard Rik Bogusz we were able to get a rough cut out to our clients in one day, and then quickly make the changes they asked for. The system worked really well and was very fast and efficient. I am really getting comfortable with using a PC and so far it has been able to do as good a job as my MacPro. The real test will be when I have to do a more complicated job that involves using some of the programs that are not integrated into the CS6 package…
Work and other things have delayed finishing my report on NAB 2012 but here is the rest of my recap:
I mainly stayed around the Adobe booth to watch the presentations about the new Adobe CS6 suite. Adobe has really gone all out to lure more people to its software, especially video editors who are not buying Apple’s “new paradigm” version of Final Cut Pro. Premiere CS6 looks great and seems like a real viable alternative for people who are primarily FCP 7 users who want to future proof themselves. I feel lucky that I have Avid experience to fall back on, while I am actively learning Premiere.
My afternoon was spent meeting the folks from Dell and NVIDIA and some of the other participants in the Dell/NVIDIA/Adobe program for FCP editors who are thinking of making the switch to Adobe Premiere. We started at the Dell booth where we heard from a company that does animation using Dell workstations and had created a render farm with Dell computers.
Next we went over to see the NVIDIA booth where we saw amazing demos of Adobe and Autodesk software using CUDA technology to create amazing images. I was really impressed at the power of the cards to be able to do almost real time animation with compositions that literal had millions of particles. Each year we are seeing Moore’s laws in action in things other than memory and NVIDIA is really creating some incredible products. My Dell system with the Quadro 2000 and the Tesla GPU astonishes me every time I use it.
Next we went to a Dell meeting room where we saw the next generation of the Precision line. Since they have announced them officially I can comment, and I must say that they really have done their homework and addressed many of the issues creative professionals have about their earlier iterations of workstations. The new computer is totally redesigned inside, much neater and modular and, for lack of a better word, friendly. Both the exterior and interior are sleeker and modern and they really have designed a nice system that includes having the hard drives accessible from the front without having to open up the case, which is really important for my workflow- I don’t use a san so I have my projects on internal drive that I swap out and this makes that process totally effortless. Two thumbs up from me for that feature alone.
After that we went for drinks and nosh at Firefly, a neat Tapas restaurant down the street from the convention center. We all shared our experience using the Dell workstations and the unanimous feeling was that Dell was really committed to making modern powerful systems for professionals and were totally interested in listening to us and giving us what we are looking for in a professional level computer. With Apple keeping us guessing about the future of Mac Pro’s we have to look at alternatives and the Dell Precision line is a viable solution.
I went looking at what AJA is offering. I was really interested in the Ki-Pro Quad which is a solid state recorder that handles 4K, Quad HD, 2K and HD signals. It supports 10-bit 4:4:4 and 10-bit 4:2:2 and RAW data and is also a debayer and ProRes encoder in the box.It also has a Thunderbolt port, which more and more vendors are starting to support. I see that recording on to SS Drives seems to be getting more and more popular as the price goes down- I recently purchased 2 115 SSD’s for $90 each so they are really becoming a cost effective alternative to traditional Hard Disk Drives. Aja also showed their new T-Tap, a thunderbolt adaptor that outputs HDMI and HD-SDI, which is a neat way to get video out of a Thunderbolt enabled Mac – makes the iMac look more and more like an alternative to the MacPro for some editing systems…
Next I finally went to the Avid booth to see what was up there. Most of the people I knew at Avid from years back have moved on, and there did not seem to be anything new ( at least for me). Most of what they were talking about was the Interplay system but that is more of an enterprise level solution for large companies. I already did the cross grade to Media Composer 6, which I have not had a chance to work on a real project on because we continue to be a FCP studio house and all our projects are done on FCP just because that is what all out systems are equipped for, although in the future I see us switching to a combo of Avid and Premiere-I really don’t see FCPX in my future unless there are some real radical changes. I actually think it is a desperation move by Avid to so soon after offering the MC6 cross grade to be offering the Symphony cross grade for the same $999 price. Kind of explains why the stock has dropped from $12 back a couple of months ago down to around $7. One highlight of stopping by Avid is that I got to meet an idol of mine, editing icon Larry Bridges! His company, Red Car, is one of the places I have always dreams of working, and at one time I almost got a chance but fate and circumstances did not make that happen. Anyway it was an honor to meet him and chat about the editing business.I then went on to the Central Hall again to look at cameras. Seems that as 3D was the big buzz last year, this year it’s all about 4K. Sounds great for having a nice big juicy image to edit, but I don’t think we will see 4K TV’s in anyone’s house for at least 10 years. We just got through the huge transition to 1080 and I think with the cost of those flat screens, most people are going to try and get years out of the screens they have. I know that this is the cutting edge and preview of what is coming but most of us don’t have systems that can even handle an image that size. On the other hand, the DSLR craze continues, although I think the Blackmagic Camera is going to be a great alternative, if only for the fact that it does not saddle you with the H.264 codec. I like that camera so much that I have pre-ordered one and can’t wait to try it out in July!!!
By this time I was pretty burnt out from the miles of walking and decided to sweep through the convention center one more time to see if I had missed anything. I ended up back at the South Hall and hit some of the smaller vendors to see what they had. I ended up getting a keyboard overlay for Premiere to help me learn where the keys are. The one I have for FCP has really helped although I end up only using the main ones anyway… The last thing that got me excited was when I visited the Pond 5 booth. We use them for stock footage and I was surprised to find out that anyone can contribute footage, you set your own price and Pond 5 splits the money with you. So now I am looking at using the Blackmagic camera to take footage when I travel and see if I can sell it at www.pond5.com .
——- Some other images from NAB 2012 ——