Why I’m Stuck With Premiere

August 27, 2013

by Ryan E. Walters, Cinematographer

When iMove Pro, Final Cut X was launched, I saw the writing on the wall- my beloved editing and grading programs (FCP 7 & Color) were on the way out… to be replaced by this fancy, simple, new, wiz-bang, all-in-one program. Granted, I loved the idea and concepts they were touting with their “revolutionary” new product (technology should be simple). It would ideally empower me to create quickly and effortlessly, like paint on paper. However, at the time, it failed in its execution. At its release, FCX was really a 1.0 program, not a 10.0 program. I was too hamstrung by it to work effectively, so I had to jump ship to Premiere. And now, two years later, I find myself re-evaluating the landscape, coming to the same conclusion. For me, Final Cut Pro is dead, and I’m stuck with Premiere.

I’m An Apple Junkie, No Really…
Before you get your panties in a bunch, know that I have used Final Cut Pro since version 1.0, when I made the first switch from Premiere 5.1. I have been exclusively using Mac ever since, and in my house I have 14 Apple products, with at least one product from each category. I live it and breathe it.

I also agree with the direction that Apple is headed in. As a creative, I firmly believe that content creation should be about CREATION, not complexity and frustration. I want tools that enable me to get to work right way, to experiment, change things around, and see my results instantaneously. I don’t want to have to load, render, and move files around from program to program. But yet, I want high quality results. These are the needs that I believe that Apple is trying to address. And I applaud them for that.

Unfortunately It Is Too Little, Too Late…
Recently, after taking another look at FCX with an open mind, hoping that I could come back to my beloved editor of choice, it appeared that a lot of my initial hang ups with the program have been resolved. This excited me! I want to make the jump back. But, after digging deeper, and getting more input from people actually using the program, it looks like I’m stuck firmly in the Adobe camp for the foreseeable future for the following reasons…

The Two Reasons Why I’m Stuck With Adobe…
While Apple was getting their act together with FCX, I was becoming ordained in all things Adobe thanks to their Creative Suite. The most eye opening and enlightening experience I had with the new suite was being able to create complex graphics in Photoshop with layers, effects, and masks, and being able to import them directly into my premiere projects. I could manipulate them as much as I wanted within the program, and even go back and make changes to the original photoshop file and have it auto update.

The auto update ability was HUGE for me. I oftentimes want to play around with formatting and styling. And, with Final Cut Pro 7, it meant that I had to create two Photoshop files: one that was the original with all of the effects, and the second that was flattened so that the effects could be read by Final Cut. Not an elegant or time efficient thing to do- I want to create and modify quickly. From what I continue to hear, this is just a reality of Final Cut- it does not handle Photoshop files as easily as Premiere does.

Please click here to read more of Ryan E. Walter’s FCPX article.

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