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What Happens in Vegas...
...stays in Vegas! This PC-based editing app is a safe bet with these tips.


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Old January 9th, 2010, 04:49 PM   #1
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Shopping for new NLE..

I'm looking for a new NLE program, I am hoping you guys could provide me some feedback to consider. My experience is limited primarily to Pinnacle Studio and older Vegas (vers 5). I've never used Final Cut but I have quite a bit of PC expertise building computers, etc so I am leaning towards PC-based programs. Maybe I should stronly consider F/C but I hate to go to a whole new platform.

I am mostly looking at the Vegas suite and the Premier Production Premium suite. I plan to put together travel videos and short commercials and spots so video and audo features are important. Years ago when I was using Vegas 5, it was somewhat unintuitive to use although I thing I got a pretty good handle on it after a while. The most frustrating non-feature for me (at the time) was there were no clip thumbnails to help me identify the clips in my hard drive folders. That was such a pain in the butt to sift through and find the clip I was looking for. I'm sure lots has changed.

As far as workflow goes, I don't have one right now. I'm mostly a dabbler at the moment until I quit my 'day job' and pick it up on a more full-time basis. I shoot with a Sony Z5.

I would like to hear some of your thoughts on differences between the Vegas and Premier packages good and bad (besides price)? I will probably configure and build or buy a new PC to best fit whichever package I settle on.

Thank you for your thoughts and comments.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 05:03 PM   #2
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Until recently, I would have been quite comfortable recommending Vegas Pro. But with all the current problems and instability, I can't do that in good conscious at the moment. I have been recommending people look at Edius instead. It's only a bit more expensive, and offers some very nice features.

Premiere Suite is significantly more expensive, but offers a suite of tools that neither Vegas nor Edius can touch. Final Cut Pro would be a good choice as well but jumping platforms can be difficult as you have a lot more downtime trying to find your way around.

I am doing an Avid evaluation, and frankly this is the direction I am likely to go. But it's the priciest of all and the learning curve is steep. I wanted the power it brings so it's working wonderfully for me.

I'm not sure there's a lot else out there right now that I would recommend to most folks. At least not in the lower price ranges. Maybe Newtek's SpeedEdit would be worth a look, but I haven't really fooled with it. Makes a lot of promises though.

Good luck in your quest.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 07:17 PM   #3
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Hi Mark

I think it's a matter of personal choice but be careful that the package you choose suits your OS !!!

I have been using Vegas for many years (from Version 4 upwards) and have never had any issues and it has always done exactly what I asked of it!! I think a lot of people are experiencing problems with Win7 and the 64 bit version...I still run the 32bit on good ole Win XP Pro and it runs faultlessly!!!

I tried the Adobe side but found them complicated .... I would personally stay away from the lower end stuff like Pinnacle or Ulead ....it like buying an automobile really!!! Just install a few trial versions and take 'em on a test drive and see which you like best!!! What others hate you might find is perfect for your needs!!!

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Old January 9th, 2010, 08:12 PM   #4
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I had been using Vegas 8 on my Latop Window Vista 32 bit work great no problem what so ever. I now have a new Desktop Windows 7 64 bit and I installed Vegas 8 32 bit and Vegas 9 64 bit in the same system, no problem what so ever. Last month I work on a project that has some still pictures and I got 1 or 2 red frame. This week I work on another project that also have 20 some still pictures and NO red frame. It strange.
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Old January 9th, 2010, 09:07 PM   #5
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Good evening,


I have been through penicle, adobe elements, adobe premiere Pro, and have moved to vegas a couple years back.

With out going into specifics, Vegas offers a lot more depth than the other programs in my book. I have had fine success with 8.0 c and 9.0 32 bit is working fine. I only use 64 bit for rendering!!

Even if you got 6 or 7.0 they would be great programs. the learning curve is a little difficult if you come from other programs, it has proven worth it to myself.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 07:10 AM   #6
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Personally, if I were to start over, I would seriously consider FCP as a logical starting point, for many reasons, though I hear you about a new platform.

1. FCP is becoming the NLE of choice for TV as well as event production. It seems everyone is using it. The amount of support for it is huge...user groups everywhere, etc..

2. The next place I would look is Avid MC. Brutal learning curve, but again it's huge and the support for it is almost limitless, and its features are phenomenal.

After those two its a crap shoot, I'm with Vegas and yes I'm not thrilled with the glitches, and I'm not sure what is going on at Sony, but for now I'm sticking with it. I've read complaints that Edius is still not as well developed as it could be, and Premier is just one I could not get the hang of. I would love to learn to use Encore, as there are lots of DVD templates available, but again, awkward to use.

You're in a tough spot, good luck!
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Old January 10th, 2010, 01:38 PM   #7
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I'll vote for Vegas. MBP's are pricey and FCP is slow -- the timeline requires constant rendering. Vegas is inexpensive and simple to use and has the best audio features of any NLE.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 01:50 PM   #8
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FCP is only as slow as the unit itself...you do need to run a comparatively faster unit....most everyone here runs dual processors and rendering is not an issue any longer.

What is MBP?
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Old January 10th, 2010, 02:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Harper View Post
FCP is only as slow as the unit itself...you do need to run a comparatively faster unit....most everyone here runs dual processors and rendering is not an issue any longer.

What is MBP?
Sorry, I meant Mac Pro.

I've used FCP on two different 8 core Mac Pros and both machines required constant rendering when working with XDCam, M2T and Red proxies. Any number of people will say the same. The smallest little alteration in a file will require a quick render.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 03:20 PM   #10
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I'm reluctant to hyper-endorse or rip any NLE. I'm frankly suspicious of any slash-and-burn or gushing accolade reviews. Either one smells; it makes me feel like there is something else going on. You can do great work with any of the leading NLE's. New versions of any of them are likely to have bugs that are usually fixed with a new rev. Pick any NLE and Google it along with words like - bug, crash, unstable etc. and you will see what I mean. Look for one with a user interface that you are comfortable with. Then give consideration to features that suit your particular needs, work environment and budget. Read a LOT of user opinions and then make up your mind on the preponderance of input. Disregard the ones that are obvious gushing fan boys or slash-and-burn crusaders; their "alternate" agenda will lead you astray.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 05:15 PM   #11
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Brian, I have not worked with XDCAM or RED proxy files, but I do know I cannot edit multicam projects with M2t files in Vegas at all, period. M2t is a delivery format, not an editing one. M2t files ideally need proxies or to be converted, so comparing NLEs based on their ability to edit M2t files is misleading, IMO, and I suspect the same is true of XDCAM files.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 06:14 PM   #12
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I don't think it's misleading because since Vegas 7, people have been editing m2t files natively. Isn't that why they stopped shipping Vegas with cineform? Because of native m2t editing? Every version since V7 seems to improve the native support. With regard to native XDCAM editing, even the Vortex DVD's reference it in just a puny dual Core 2.0.

I agree with what's been said earlier that the only way to decide which NLE to buy is to try the trial version.

Here's how I'd briefly summarize the various NLE's
Vegas: Cheap, fast, intuitive, best audio, buggy lately, one stop solution.
Edius: Cheap, stable, fast, lacks a few key features.
Premiere: integrates with all the great Adobe software, like AE.
FCP: stable but sluggish with constant rendering. Needs pricey MacPro, Powerful suite, best color correcting.
Avid: Gold standard. Want to go to Hollywood?
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Old January 10th, 2010, 06:16 PM   #13
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Very good point Jeff. Today's highly compressed long GOP video file formats are a problem on the timeline, any timeline. Even if your hardware can handle the brute power required to work with these files, the work flow is constrained because these highly compressed video files can't be reencoded without significantly damaging the video quality.

In addition, it seems like about every other week another camera maker comes out with yet another codec variation as they pursue the elusive Holy Grail of video quality. How is it that a NLE developer is supposed to support a codec that is yet to be introduced at the time their NLE is released!? There are obviously some who do expect that though because every time this happens, the wailing whines from some are deafening when they bemoan the shortcomings of a given NLE's ability to support the codec surprise de jour.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 06:57 PM   #14
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I don't get it either Jim. AVCHD is still senseless to me. It was designed specifically as an acquistion/delivery format and people moan because the NLEs cannot handle it, as you say. It was designed for consumer cams for direct playback, not editing. Now it's being used in ever more professional cameras, but it is far from a mature technology. I owned my Panasonic HMC 150 for about one month before ditching it. Lovely camera...lots going for it, but the AVCHD...I still don't get it.

And Brian "since Vegas 7, people have been editing m2t files natively". A single line, sure. 3 or 4 at a time? I don't think so. When I have a multicamera project with m2t files, I use proxies, there is no choice. My i7 processor is not the most powerful, but if at 3.4gHz it cannot do mulicamera because it cannot handle the files, the issue is not with my NLE or with my PC, it is the files.
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Old January 10th, 2010, 07:34 PM   #15
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I give a lot of credit to Cineform. They save me from a lot of AVCHD misery. I convert .m2t and AVCHD files to Cineform. They often make accommodations for new video format variations AND the Cineform format is specifically designed for editing.
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