View Full Version : Should Premiere and After Effects be merged?
June 25th, 2012, 02:24 AM
I've been learning Adobe Premiere Pro CS6 and After Effects CS6 on lynda.com. (Actually I preferred the CS5 tutorial so I've been watching that one instead of the CS6 one).
It occurs to me that these products are similar, and duplicate much functionality. After Effects has some video editing capability but Premiere is much better at it. Likewise, Premiere has some filters and effects but After Effects is much better at it. Should the products be merged?
June 25th, 2012, 03:18 AM
They most likely won't, even though many of us would like it. The underlying software architecture is very different, despite the UI similarities.
June 25th, 2012, 12:10 PM
Yes, they are like two different animals.
June 25th, 2012, 12:28 PM
Merging would make the Ui too cluttered as there are very different toolsets that would have to be maintained. Generally I work In both apps but with very different mindsets. I also throw Pro Tools into the mix (pun intended) as it is my preferred audio editing/mixing platform. The delegating of duties allows me to focus on what I'm doing without having to worry about the other areas of post production. Call me old school!
June 25th, 2012, 06:11 PM
I wouldn't like to see them merged - that would result in one severely overcomplicated program - from a programmers perspective and a users perspective. Not to mention it would throw the whole pricing structure of the suites/individual products out the window.
However, there are some AE features that I believe should be built into Premiere. I was extremely happy that stabilisation was included in Premiere CS6, as this was one thing I used when editing every wedding video, and previously required a trip to AE. What I would also really like to see in Premiere is some basic masking tools - similar to what is available in Sony Vegas Pro via the "Event Pan/Crop" window. This would let you apply customised vignette's really easily (Adjstment layers have made this easier, but still don't give you enough control). At the moment anything other than a circle vignette (which is actually fairly useless on a 16:9 frame) requires a trip to AE, or you can create and import an image with transparency from Photoshop. Simple masking would make it really easy to do this inside Premiere, as well as make simple lower 3rds, or other custom shapes you might need.
June 25th, 2012, 09:57 PM
Should the products be merged?
I don't think they can be (at least not in their present states) -
1. After Effects is a layer based engine, and under the hood it uses quite a bit of node-based technology too. This system does not work very well with a timeline.
2. After Effects uses scripts
3. After Effects uses RAM previews while Premiere is now configured to use the mercury engine (which is a joy to use in CS6)
4. Mainly After Effects has a totally different development history compared to Premiere. Even though Bridge offers round-trip capability, After Effects is also used in projects where Premiere is not the main editing engine, e.g. FCP or Avid. In fact, Adobe has bought Automatic Duck and it ships free with CS6.
5. It would take a full rewrite of code from scratch - and not all projects need After Effects. It would make things too bloated. After Effects is bloated as is - try using another comp app like Nuke to see the difference.
My take is, even they can be, they shouldn't be.
June 25th, 2012, 10:41 PM
They wont, too much $$$$$ to be made for Adobe. Shame but true.
June 26th, 2012, 12:37 AM
I agree. The architecture is too different. AE isn't designed to work on an entire movie, in my mind it's meant to do special things to short clips. When I have several AE links in a PP sequence(s) PP becomes more manageable because it hides the AE details (which can be massive). If I had to deal with all the complexities of those AE clips while trying to tell a story I'd probably get nothing done.
June 26th, 2012, 12:11 PM
At the moment anything other than a circle vignette (which is actually fairly useless on a 16:9 frame) requires a trip to AE, .
Quick Vignette - Premiere Pro on Vimeo
June 27th, 2012, 03:45 AM
In terms of vignettes, let me just say that if Adobe added support for Premiere color spaces in one function in AE SDK, the problem would have already been solved. For everyone. For free.
June 27th, 2012, 06:54 AM
Thanks Ann, I'd overlooked the circle effect. Instead I had been using the ramp effect and blend modes, then using the transform effect to make it wider.
I suppose with multiple layers it is possible to get whatever vignette shape you want, but it would be a whole lot easier if you could just draw a quick mask. For example, for a talking head interview, it would be great to be able to roughly outline the subject, bump the mask feather right up, and get a nice even falloff of light all around the subject.
June 28th, 2012, 03:26 AM
I can definitely see why After Effects is not suitable in its present state for editing an entire movie. However, I have difficulty seeing why all of the functionality of After Effects cannot be imported into Premiere Pro. Layers are pretty similar to video tracks. The effects/filters and keyframes work the same way. At the very least, all of the effects could be ported to Premiere Pro and that would make AE pretty redundant.
June 28th, 2012, 09:04 AM
I am sure that Adobe would amalgamate the two (as they did with Encore) if they could, then those of us who have no use for After Effects would have to pay the extra for it when we want to upgrade Premiere!
More $$$$$, which seems to be what Adobe is all about these days.
June 29th, 2012, 03:37 PM
As someone who uses both a lot I would say no. They should focus on incorporating after effects on some level in the the mercury playback engine, even if it is limited to only some effects & tools at first.
Other than that it would be nice if they could make a "motion template" style system, set up a graphics/title composite in AE then in premiere have the option to alter the text, adjust specified effects/parameters, and change drop zone images/video. Something like that would be great for animated lower thirds & full screen text supers, it worked/works well with motion & FCP7(other than the speed/performance).
With adjustment layers in premiere pro CS6 you can see adobe is willing to bring over features from AE, though they don't need to bring it all over.
July 2nd, 2012, 07:23 AM
I vote 'no'.
Dig deeper in AE and you'll discover editing and compositing in the same program will be messy, slow and tiresome.
Dynamic linking works fine.
And when a composite is ready, but complicated I export it to put in Premiere.
(Complicated = over a 100 layers with different overlay modi, multiple effects, including particles, lights, etc)
Imagine the layer structure of AE in Premiere. That would mean some of my edits would require over a 1000 tracks.
Or imagine parenting in a Premiere Pro structure.
For vignettes I recommend looking at Red Giant's Colorista.