Premiere Editors - Your thoughts on a few things...
Hey everyone, so I've been talking to a few post supervisors and some editor friends of mine. Though there is a mixed opinion on this, I want to open this up. (I'm looking for more than just a "Use the right tool for the right gig." comment, if that's ok.) Appreciate any thoughts here.
1. Will DaVinci Resolve eventually take over Adobe Premiere CC? (Lots of buzz about its editing capabilities and built-in advanced color features.) Will it become the new all-in-one? Is it heading there soon?
2. Will Avid eventually phase out? Why or why not? (Whether it's Hollywood with system-linked editors, or "run and gun" boutique post houses, marketing agencies, or the isolated freelance editor on a single external drive...)
3. Is there a reason to still learn Avid, other than the response that 'everyone in Hollywood uses it'? It seems to be quite a learning curve compared to FCP 7, Adobe Premeire CC, and DaVinci 14/15 - am I correct? My biggest inital hang-up when I dabbled in Avid a few years ago, was that will not allow for opening multiple time-lines or sequences at once. (I'm sure you have your own pros and cons.) Recently, another editor friend of mine mentioned that when he was job-hunting online, most are asking for editing on "Premiere Pro CC"..
Any thoughts or opinions on these questions?
Thanks in advance,
Salt Lake City, Utah
1) Its going to take some high profile project being successful using it as an editor before that happens. I’ve talked to a few places, and none will touch it for editing, even though they already have it on all their systems. Everything I’ve heard is that its getting there, but still has a ways to go for editing.
2) I’d be shocked if Avid went away. Huge user base in feature films and broadcast tv, that are still fully onboard. Its still the best for large shared projects, by far. Nothing else even comes close for reliablility.
3) Yes....if you want to work in feature films or broadcast tv, it still is good to know. If you don’t, you may never encounter Avid in your world.
[Tom Laughlin] "1. Will DaVinci Resolve eventually take over Adobe Premiere CC?"
Not as an editing tool in the near future. Way more people use After Effects than Fusion, so even if they edited on Resolve, they would still do mograph/VFX in AE. Once you make that choice, staying within the Adobe family makes the most sense. Resolve is good and getting better as an editor, but right now, it's mainly a choice for the single user, who doesn't need to collaborate with other editors or move project files around (although that can be done with Resolve). Being free (or low perpetual cost) is attractive to folks who hate subscription; but, that's not the majority, yet. However, you may see more and more finishing editing being done in Resolve, after color correction, rather than round-tripping back to another NLE.
[Tom Laughlin] "2. Will Avid eventually phase out? Why or why not?"
Nope. But it will continue to be a minority. It's not just "Hollywood" (and other feature film centers around the world), but in a dominant number of television broadcast installations (news, promos, shows) worldwide. However, "eventually" can be a long time, so down the road - of course, that's likely.
[Tom Laughlin] "3. Is there a reason to still learn Avid"
Yes. But it depends on which market you are in and which one you intend to move to, if that's in your future. Today, if you are a new editor trying to move into more and more gigs, I would recommend Premiere Pro first and Media Composer second. Reverse in NYC, Chicago, or LA. Then everything else (Resolve, FCPX, other) after that.
And yes, you can open multiple timelines in Media Composer. Just not in the same way as FCP7 or Premiere. The record-side pulldown lets you select an active sequence from past open timelines. A second active timeline can be loaded as a source in the source side. You can toggle the timeline window between the two sequences.
Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com
1. No. It's a color correction tool with editing capabilities at the moment. Sure, pretty much EVERYONE uses it for various purposes, from grading, to creating dailies to transitioning projects from other NLEs. But it isn't quite mature enough as a NLE to compete with PPro or Avid. Not at this time. It's trying to do TOO much..."Look, we grade! And now Edit! And now Mix! And now VFX!"
2. No. It's used in 90%+ of TV shows and feature films...and does MANY things better (shared media/project workflows) than the competition. And there is a very robust ecosystem built around it that's pretty entrenced. Plus it works great. it won't go away until it doesn't work great, or something does the core things avid does, better, and fits into the ecosystem.
3. use it if you want to work in Hollywood/New York/Atlanta...wherever TV shows are made. Use it if the tools it offers work best for the given editing situation you might find yourself in. I use it even on non-TV stuff for the organizational tools it offers. But I also use PPro. it still can't open more than one sequence at a time, but most people who use it don't need that, or will load one sequence into the PREVIEW monitor. Many ways to skin a cat. But hey, if you are seeing more jobs asking for PPro experience in the areas you are applying for...then use that.
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1. Maybe. Long way to go though. Needs a critical mass of heavy usage by serious editors. Major Hollywood movies / dramas / reality shows / sporting events - they all test different parts of the NLE.
Avid had it in the early days as they became the only non-linear game in town (plus the prices afforded decent R&D budgets)
Adobe have put money into this research (Gone Girl etc, Football World Cups)
Not sure BM can afford it on their financial model.
2. Phase out? Hmm. FCP7 made inroads and now PP has made inroads but PP is not very backwards compatible, not very good for collaboration and introduces new bugs with each release.
Avid is the best for trimming, stable, still improving and is mostly the solution for larger installations. Still about 60% of my work.
One place I work has PP, Resolve & Avid on the same computer. We tend to use PP for short form (colour in Resolve) and Avid for long form.
3. Only you can tell, but if there’s Avid work in your market then yes.
1. Resolve is an excellent program but it's really up to the Blackmagic marketing folks and engineering team whether it can become a mainstream player.
2. maybe but not in the near term.
3. completely based on your market. Where I'm at, it's been ages since I last cut on an Avid because Premiere dominates.
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Can't speak for DaVinci. The question with any software is not is it the best, but what is everyone using? Because you don't want to be in the sandbox playing alone.
I find Avid clunky and use Premiere on short form, because the short pieces I do (trailers, spots and corporate) are graphic intensive.
Having said that, Avid is the only game in town for long form. And that has to do with it's media management. A bin in Media Composer is also a folder on the hard drive. When you close a bin, Avid doesn't think about that bin anymore until you open it again. Which means that you can have an insane amount of bins and media and work on a relatively slow computer. Not so with any other program. The bigger the project in PrP and FCP X, the more computing power it needs. In Avid when things start slowing down, close all the bins you don't need.
Documentaries, reality shows and big budget features use a lot of media and have many sequences of various kinds. The need to share it with others, and they need to access everything. So Avid is king - for now.
It seems that if or when Premiere is used on a film, there is this big push to quiet that news down, or boast it up for marketing. I wrote into "American Cinema Editor" magazine and told them that it felt like the magazine was not being as editorially equitable towards Premiere, versus Avid. When Deadpool came out, there was a streamlined workflow that was highlighted in many Adobe sponsored interviews with the director and the post supervisor, Vashi, and yet how quickly a rebuttal came in next month's ACE magazine about how there were so many problems with the Deadpool (Premiere Pro) workflow. I'm only mentioning this because, it seems like there are actually a lot more editors now on Premiere in Hollywood, I suspect, that people are saying or noting, but I could be wrong. I do think for the block-buster films, there are seasoned traditional editors who's entire life having spent on Avid, have the reputation to carry the Avid workflow and name. It really does feel back and forth on several levels. There is a huge post house here in Salt Lake, known as an Avid post house, and I know for a fact a majority of their editors are cutting on Premiere. So, it's interesting to see the status of the industry right now. And thanks everyone for your comments, and future comments!
Salt Lake City, Utah
[Tom Laughlin] "It seems that if or when Premiere is used on a film, there is this big push to quiet that news down, or boast it up for marketing."
Hmm... I wonder why you feel that way? I have regularly written editor user stories for Creative Planet Network (Digital Video, Videography magazines) over the years. Quite a few of these have been Premiere Pro-related. There's certainly no bias either for or against Avid and/or Adobe, as they are both advertisers. The same is generally true of my colleagues who also write about editing topics and their associated print or web publications.
Since my articles focus on technology and are not film reviews, my contacts are usually established through Avid, Apple, or Avid. Blackmagic, too. But the hook can't just be that the film was cut on Premiere. Rather, the film or the story around it has to be interesting, too. Note that it's up to the film or technology companies' PR folks to push these stories to the writers and publications. Avid's folks are very active and it's very easy for us to get interviews with a wide range of feature editors who cut on Media Composer or mixers who use Pro Tools. Less so with Adobe.
CE-Magazine is probably not a good measure, because it's the publication for ACE, an honorary society of feature film editors. Most of the members are in the top echelon of the industry. Those editors are largely Avid users. But not all. However, in the Hollywood film community, there's a large infrastructure built around the Avid ecosystem, hence its dominance.
If you want to see greater Premiere Pro penetration, look at the coverage of films for Netflix or Sundance entries. Premiere enjoys a much bigger representation there.
Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com