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Old January 2nd, 2011, 12:36 PM   #1
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FCP 7 OR Premiere Pro CS5??

Please help me to decide which editor to use FCP 7 OR Premiere Pro CS5. I own Adobe Production Premium which contains Premiere Pro CS5 but have never used it or FCP 7 so I am starting fresh with learning. I am not afraid of the "learning curve" or "complexity" of a new program since I am very "software" competent at learning. I am willing to buy FCP 7 so money is not a deciding factor here.

I will use my MacBook Pro 17" iCore 5 bought Fall 2010 and will be purchasing a Panasonic AG-HMC40 (HD camera). I will be making movie shorts and documentaries at first as a hobby then later to freelance and possibly weddings. I am working alone for now and will not need to share editing files/work with others.

In short, I want to learn and use a product that has the ability to give me professional "Hollywood" style "features".

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Gregory
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Old January 2nd, 2011, 03:20 PM   #2
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Both suites can give you professional results.

I used Premiere until Pro 2.0, so it's been a while. I changed to FCS and I liked that better. The suite in 2007 was very strong, when Apple just added Color.

But Premiere made a lot of workflow enchancements, and it would be working faster with RED footage (and many other footage) than FCP. If I'm not mistaken it's better multicore-optimized than FCP at this point. FCP is one of the oldest programmes in the whole suite, and is in need of a rework under the engine, but rumors have it that that is exactly where Apple is working on.
I know FCP has a better reputation in stability then Premiere. When I worked with Premiere, this was definately the case, but I don't know how it is now with CS5.

There is probably an FCP-update coming in early 2011, and it will be a bit waiting at this point how big that update is, and where it places FCP in a comparison with the other NLE's.
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Old January 2nd, 2011, 05:56 PM   #3
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In this instance, as you own Premiere Pro already, it makes sense to use that as your NLE. There is no innate advantage the current version of Final Cut has over Premiere Pro except maybe a larger install base, and even with that the case they are very similar tool sets anyway - they are certainly similar enough that any advantage you get in learning Final Cut Pro will not be particularly advantageous in between now and April when a new version is hoped to come out.

It's also quite likely that the next version of FCP will have significant revisions, quite possibly both in terms of how projects are set up as well as infrastructure - as such learning the next version of FCP will also probably have a bit of a learning curve/workflow change for even current very advanced users, so you gain even less by going with final cut in the meantime.

There are exceptions -are you likely to collaborate with other FCP users, are you wanting to use Color, do you want access to Prores encoding. Those are the three reasons I could say that are very good reasons to shift to FCP, and as you'll probably also get a decent price on an upgrade if you buy soon and the update in April the cost hit probably won't be too massive. But if you buy now, and can't afford the update in April, you'll be caught with old software for a lot longer than is necessary or worthwhile, so you should factor in the likelihood of paying for an upgrade soon as well as the cost of the software now in your decision making.

Basically - between now and the next 6 months what volume of editing are you going to be doing, what volume of grading in a dedicated grading suite software environment like Color could you see yourself doing, and who are you going to want to collaborate with - the answer to these questions should determine the value of getting into FCP now for you, compared to waiting until any new version announcements that hopefully will happen in the next six months.

Premiere pro's advantages are pretty significant with some types of cameras as well, especially if you have a well spec'd machine and aren't in a collaborative environment where you need to edit on a variety of differently spec'd machines - so if you are working with footage that can be cuda accelerated and have a cuda capable graphics card you have a pretty compelling reason to stick with Premiere Pro as your NLE.
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Old January 2nd, 2011, 10:30 PM   #4
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A positive for adobe, you can edit most media natively. Therefore, you save time and significant hard drive space.

A positive for FCP, in my experience it seems to be more stable.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 09:08 AM   #5
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There are many advantages with FCP. Premiere sounds great on paper, but thereīs a ton of little issues that will make you pull your hair. CS5 is in way better shape than CS3 or CS4 have ever been, but those issues are still present.

-no intermediate codec. Itīs awesome CS5 can edit natively, but it comes with a price: FCP workflows with proper transcoding to ProRes are smoother, safer and more stable.

-a slew of tiny stupid limitations. For example, no way to modify sequence preset after you create them. No simple way of transferring clip properties between clips. No preview on HDV capturing. Severely limited keyboard customization, compared to FCP. CUmbersome trim editing.

-no dual system audio (crucial for DSLR workflows). You canīt merge Video from one clip with audio from another clip into a single clip and comfortably edit from there. No way, no how.

I could go on. Itīs exactly like comparing Windows with Mac OS X. Windows does get the job done, but Mac is easier on the nerves.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 12:21 PM   #6
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Since you have CS5 and it sounds like no editing experience at all (??). Just start shooting and editing with what you've got. The ability to do creative editing is far more important than the technology that you edit on.

Getting to know CS5 would be advantageous even if you switched at a latter date, as many FCS users use AE.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 12:25 PM   #7
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Yes, Chris is right. Neither of the tools will make you a good editor. If you already have Premiere, by all means use Premiere. Its just based on longtime experience, FCP is a more mature tool.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 05:53 PM   #8
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Thanks Juri for your previous post, as I haven't heard so much about the downsides of CS5, mostly I hear about the benefits.

Craig, Where did you hear about a possible April FCS?
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 07:01 PM   #9
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Well Gregory and Chris, we always recommend try before you buy. I don't know about FCP since I'm not a Mac guy, but most NLEs today have free trials so you can see if you like the interface and workflow.

We cannot allow this to turn into a personal arguement, but I have to say that Jiri is among a small group of folks posting here on DVinfo who have made only negatively slanted comments about CS5, some incorrect, since even before it was released. Still there's no clear indication that he has actually used the current release of the software. (eg, yes you can very easily LINK a video clip and any audio track, or multiple audio tracks, and move them around the timeline as a single entity; I do it all the time)

No software has every possible feature that all people want it to have; no software is entirely bug-free. To say FCP is "more mature" than CS5 is entirely subjective and not warranted or useful. Hey, use whatever you're more comfortable with, but I'm using CS5 on multiple streams of varied HD sources...and am not pulling my hair out. Try 'em both.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 08:47 PM   #10
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Thanks Everyone

I want to thank each of your replies. I learned a little something from each.

G
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 08:57 PM   #11
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Avid MC5 OR Premiere Pro CS5??

Please help me to decide which editor to use Avid MC5 OR Premiere Pro CS5. I own Adobe Production Premium which contains Premiere Pro CS5 but have never used it or AVID so I am starting fresh with learning. I am not afraid of the "learning curve" or "complexity" of a new program since I am very "software" competent at learning.

I will use my MacBook Pro 17" iCore 5 bought Fall 2010 and will be purchasing a Panasonic AG-HMC40 (HD camera). I will be making movie shorts and documentaries at first as a hobby then later to freelance and possibly weddings. I am working alone for now and will not need to share editing files/work with others.

In short, I want to learn and use a product that has the ability to give me professional "Hollywood" style "features/look."

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Gregory
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 09:07 PM   #12
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CS5 will be cheaper and more flexible. I'd recommend that route.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 09:52 PM   #13
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I've merged the new "Avid or CS5?" thread with the existing "FCP or CS5?" thread and moved the consolidated thread to this Open DV Discussion forum so what is essentially the same question isn't cross-posted in multiple NLE forums.

My advice is the same: you've got CS5 so you're all set to give that a try. You can download trials of any other NLE you're interested in and give it a go.
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Old January 4th, 2011, 12:53 AM   #14
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Well, Pete, linking and merging are two different concepts. With linking (which is of course supported in FCP too), you only link two clips on the timeline - meaning it is not a single clip, you cannot put in in a bin, match frame or create a subclip. With merging, you effectively create a new clip, which can be used in a way any other "real" media clip can be used. And fear not, I've used CS5 for about half a year before making the full switch to FCP. And CS2 (PPro 7), CS3 and CS4 before that. I know Premiere inside out.

Chris, the reason you haven't heard that much about the downsides of CS5 is that people tend to stick to what they know and thus are more likely to downplay the issues. Without wanting to insult anyone, there's also a lot of inexperienced people who don't know advanced EDITING features they might wnat to use and need. Realtime playback isn't everything.

Last edited by Jiri Fiala; January 4th, 2011 at 02:55 AM.
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Old January 4th, 2011, 06:16 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jiri Fiala View Post
...the reason you haven't heard that much about the downsides of CS5 is that people tend to stick to what they know and thus are more likely to downplay the issues.
Definitely true of all the NLEs since that fits with human nature -- we gravitate to what we like. And as I said earlier, NONE of them has every feature everyone would want, but appeal in a different way to different people.

Generally once we're invested in, and become very familiar with, a particular NLE most folks aren't going to jump ship and go learn a new NLE unless we feel pretty strongly. Jiri's happy using FCP so that's what he's gone back to. I've used every version of Premiere since v5.0 (late 1990's) and it's what I'm comfortable with. Adobe has had their clunkers in the past and I did consider abandoning ship a couple times, but with CS5 I'm very happy with the entire well-integrated Adobe suite. I have no reason to switch NLEs, but I also have no reason to diss FCP or Vegas, or Edius, or Avid, or anyone else I failed to mention, either.

I don't miss the merge function he describes because PPro makes superb use of nested sequences; I can put any simple or complex collection of video / audio / stills / synthetics / dynamic link clips / other sequences in a sequence that lives in a Project Panel bin and treat it just like a clip. I can even use the Match Frame feature that PPro does have to find a frame in the source clip or reveal it in a source sequence when nesting. Not being familiar with FCP, maybe I'm unaware that there's something nice about merged clips as opposed to the power of a nested sequence but it seems more a matter of different ways of doing similar task.

All this is again to say that any of these NLEs are "mature" and "which is better" tends to be a personal preference more than which one is "better." So again, to Gregory, since you already own CS5 it is easy to try that, but I'd encourage you to download the free trials of other NLEs and play around with them.

Good luck!
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