Adobe Premiere Pro CS6 Review
2 & 3 Set)
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I was in the process of upgrading to a new system, but what the heck, why not test the software with the bare minimum requirements. Adobe software is typically bulky, meaning that they don’t usually play nice at the minimum requirements, so you can imagine my surprise when my first test project using Premiere Pro CS6 was going surprisingly well. While this was promising, I knew that project I had created was fairly basic with just two video tracks and two audio tracks.
I was in the process of upgrading to a new system, but what the heck, why not test the software with the bare minimum requirements. Adobe software is typically bulky, meaning that they don’t usually play nice at the minimum requirements, so you can imagine my surprise when my first test project using Premiere Pro CS6 was going surprisingly well. While this was promising, I knew that project I had created was fairly basic with just two video tracks and two audio tracks. The two video tracks contained the same footage, but I applied a blur to the bottom track Track 1 in order to use it as a backdrop to the track above it Track 2.
The audio tracks consisted of one music track and one vocal track that I recorded using a Tascam DR portable audio recorder. My aging computer is a 3. While this system does work with Premiere Pro CS6, it is not in any way a recommended or preferred configuration. While the processor is plenty fast enough, the 4GB memory is considered a minimum requirement to run Premiere Pro Adobe recommends 8GB.
I did manually add the GT to the CUDA supported text file in order to get Premiere Pro to recognize the card as “supported,” but the card is on the very low end of the scale when it comes to performance.
While that tweak got me by in CS5. Since the system doesn’t have the space for a more powerful graphics card or extra memory I decided to custom build a computer designed to handle HD video editing. I almost went with the Quadro , but just couldn’t get myself to give up CUDA cores while spending more money. I decided to use fast SSD drives to reduce bottlenecks associated with slower hard drives. SSD disks are much faster than individual hard drives, which helps to keep the system running full speed, even when playing back multiple tracks simultaneously.
I got by with the other versions, but there just too many tasks that seemed to slow down the process of editing. Adobe have taken great strides with this new release to make sure that it not only impresses those who have used prior versions, but also to impress those that are making the switch from Final Cut Pro to Premiere. Lets take a look at some of the new capabilities of Premiere Pro CS6. Live Thumbnail Scrubbing in the Project Panel On of my biggest complaints with previous versions was the way that Premiere Pro generated thumbnails for each clip in the project panel.
Every time I opened a bin with clips in it I would have to wait for each thumbnail to render in order to see the image that represented the contents of each clip. To make matters worse Premiere Pro would only draw thumbnails for clips that were visible. This meant I would have to slowly scroll down the list of clips, while waiting for the software to catch up – rendering each thumbnail one-by-one.
I have since learned that much of this delay was caused by the fact that I was storing my content on an external slow drive, but that was only part of the problem.
These LIVE thumbnails will actually scrub through the clip as your mouse hovers and moves over the clip from side-to-side.. This feature makes it so easy to view the contents of an entire clip. This live scrubbing is similar to the way users can interact with thumbnails in Apple’s iMovie and the new FCP software.
Premiere Pro CS6 still has the problem of only rendering thumbnails that are visible, but now that I store my content on an internal SATA rpm hard drive the software is able to more quickly draw out each thumbnail as I scroll through my bins. I like to keep my clips separated into bins in order to stay more organized.
When editing weddings I’ll put each of these into their own bins: When opening a bin hold down the [ALT] key while clicking to open the bin in its own tab.
This way you only have to scroll through the bin once while Premiere Pro renders the thumbnails. As long as you keep the bin open in a tab, Premiere won’t let go of those thumbnails.
Full Screen Playback Support This feature is so important that I can’t believe I never complained about the lack of it in prior versions.
Full screen support is now just a keystroke away when previewing your footage. Hit the [ESC[ key to go back to the regular view. Full screen playback allows you to easily catch things like video noise, syncing issues, and sensor dust – before exporting your film.
Real time edits during playback Uninterrupted playback While playing back your sequence you can now make real-time changes to effects color corrections, blur, etc.
This allows you to preview the changes to more than just one-frame – quickly and easily. This applies to audio effects as well. In earlier versions of Premiere Pro playback would stop anytime you moved a slider or selected an effect. In CS6 playback will continue even when the program isn’t the active window. I’m a multi-tasker, but with PP CS5. Now with CS6 I can play back footage while trying to find appropriate music or doing a web search for something.
Even something as simple as changing the computer’s master volume control would pause the playback in Premiere, just because Premiere was no longer the ‘active’ window. That’s all changed in CS6. Not all effects can be combined When adding effects to your clips you eventually discover that some effects won’t play well with others.
For example, if you choose to reverse the playback of a clip or change its playback speed you won’t be able to use the Warp Stabilization effect on that clip. The same holds true if you try to use the plug-in GBDeflicker, a third-party plug-in that I use to deflicker time-lapse footage. I have also discovered other effects that if added to the same clip twice could make Premiere Pro unstable and crash. This has happened with Neat Video’s Noise Reduction plug-in effect as well as when layering other effects in Premiere Pro.
Typically you wouldn’t knowingly add the same effect to a clip multiple times, but there will be times when the wrong clip is selected as you double-click to add an effect. Using Adjustment layers can also add the same effect twice if you’re not careful about which clips lie below the adjustment layer.
If any of them already have a similar effect applied to them this would cause an overlap on those particular clips. Instead of using the “time-remapping” feature to change the speed or duration of a clip, you can instead have PP interpret the clip to a different frame-rate Since Premiere Pro can accept clips of varying frame rates on the same timeline, this shouldn’t cause a problem. To change the frame rate fps of a clip, select the clip in the project area, right-click on it, and select [modify] from the pop-up menu, then select [interpret footage].
Once the fps for the clip has been changed you can now drag it onto the timeline and add the warp stabilize effect to it. Initially capturing footage This trick will not allow you to vary the speed within a clip, like you could if you used the time-remapping option.
Easily Apply a Default Transition PP CS6 allows you to set any Audio or Video transitions as a ‘default’, which you can apply to the beginning or end of a clip just by right-clicking and selecting “Apply Default Transition.
When dealing with hundreds of clips on a timeline this one feature can save you tons of time. Unfortunately only one of the effects can be accessed with the right-click shortcut, so if you’re a transition junkie you still might be begging for more. I have set the cross dissolve as my default video transition and the exponential fade cross dissolve as my default audio transition. These are not applied automatically – instead they are just a right-click away.
Adjustment Layers If you have used Photoshop or most any other photo editing software you probably already know the benefit of using adjustment layers. The new Adjustment Layer feature in Premiere Pro works the same way. Instead of adding effects to a clip and having to repeat it for each similar clip on the timeline, you can now create an adjustment layer that will apply effects to any clips below the adjustment layer.
This makes it easy to apply effects to a group of clips all at once, as well as editing those adjustments if needed. Since Premiere Pro can sometimes crash when the same effect is added to a clip twice, make sure that when adding an Adjustment Layer, that the clips beneath the layer do not yet have effects applies to them.
Of course, it is also good practice to back up your work frequently by pressing [CTRL – S] on your keyboard before making major changes. Warp Stabilization helps to smooth out or even eliminate camera shake that just can’t be avoided when hand-holding a camera and can also help to reduce the effects of rolling shutter when shooting with a DSLR. Warp stabilization is a feature that can take hand-held footage and make it look as if it was shot on a tripod.
Warp stabilization isn’t perfect, but when it works it is quite amazing. When it doesn’t work well you’ll notice a strange bending and morphing of the video in areas that needed the most stabilization. You’ll need to play around with the different types of stabilization to see which settings will work best when the default setting isn’t doing it. With clips such as these you may find that using Adobe After Effect’s Tracking feature to stabilize the footage may work better than the warp stabilization feature.
There’s a great video on YouTube that was produced by Linda. For hand-held shake caused by vibration or a slightly unsteady hand, you’ll find that the Warp Stabilizer does a very good job, but for really shaky footage it probably won’t save you.
You should follow the adage of “Garbage in, garbage out” or “Get it right in camera” as often as possible. Rolling Shutter Repair If you’re shooting with DSLR’s, mirrorless cameras, or most any camera that uses a CMOS sensor, you’re probably familiar with the fact that as you horizontally pan the camera, vertical lines tend to skew or slant in the opposite direction of the pan. This is caused by the fact that the sensor doesn’t actually capture a complete frame of video all at once, instead it paints the scene onto the sensor line by line, starting at the top left corner of the sensor and ending at the lower right corner.
When camera movements bounce from side to side, vertical lines will start to look like jello, and if you pan quickly from left to right or back vertical lines will look slanted. This is called the the rolling shutter effect.
This effect should be used on clips where rolling shutter correction is needed, but not stabilization. If the clip needs stabilization as well as rolling shutter repair, you’ll find that the warp stabilizer does feature automatic and enhanced correction built-in for rolling shutter.
With the new CS6 Adobe has lifted the restriction on the number of cameras allowing the power of your computer to determine the limit. Adobe Encore – Now bit You’ll quickly discover that not everyone wants to view your final product on the web. New for CS6 is bit support, which will give Encore some of the same speed advantages that you have inside Premiere Pro. Playing clips on the timeline will be silky smooth and transcoding and authoring your discs are also faster. Encore also allows you to create DVD’s that can played back on the web.
These “DVD’s” will have the same functionality as a traditional Blu-ray disc with pop-up menus, multi-page menus, and looping menu playback.
As they say, what we don’t know doesn’t hurt us. Of course, once I learn it I’ll probably only use Premiere Pro for some light color adjustments, saving the finishing work for SpeedGrade. We’ll see. Premiere Pro is not a consumer piece of software, and as such, it really shines when it has the necessary power, ram, and storage to let itself go. While Premiere Pro CS6 will run on most computers with a minimum of 4GB of memory, there are some basic hardware requirements that your PC should have to really allow the software to shine.
First, your PC needs to have a bit processor most of the computers in the past years do. You’ll also need to be running a bit version of Windows 7 with Service Pack 1. From there you should have a minimum of 8GB of memory to give the software additional headroom to do its thing. While the software does run with 4GB systems, it has to share that memory with the Windows OS and other background tasks, which means the system will barely have enough memory to run reliably.
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