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Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!

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Steve Connor
Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 18, 2019 at 9:16:29 am

Day to day I edit using FCPX on a top spec 2015 MacBook Pro, very happy with the speed I get with XAVC material shot on FS7 and FS5's, I also use a lot of library material which is mostly .h264 - never have any speed problems at all.

Last couple of weeks I've been forced back to editing on Premiere Pro and I'm genuinely shocked by how slow the performance is, even scaling down to 1/4 or 1/8th res I don't get great playback at all, have Adobe not caught up yet?

Apart from the performance I don't mind the interface and how it works but it looks like it needs a much more powerful machine to make it perform properly - has anyone else found this?


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 18, 2019 at 11:19:48 am

Yep. Media performance on a laptop once you get above HD - and with a taxing codec - challenges Premiere Pro. I have the mid-2014 model (similar to yours, but with the last Nvidia cards) and FCPX definitely performs better on that machine with type of media. However, I'm currently cutting some C100 H264 HD stuff on Premiere on that machine (native media, multicam, color correction), and it's very smooth. Generally HD ProRes is also very easy in Premiere on that MBP.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Rich Rubasch
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 18, 2019 at 2:45:12 pm

Are you sure you have Open CL chosen as your renderer and not set to Software? That would also do it!

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production, Post, Studio Sound Stage
Founder/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 18, 2019 at 4:18:58 pm

[Rich Rubasch] "Are you sure you have Open CL chosen as your renderer and not set to Software? That would also do it!"

That should only affect basic effects that use GPU power and rendering. It *shouldn't* affect regular media playback of the timeline or browser clips. It's those function where Premiere will stutter and not show full frame rate on that vintage of a machine with media higher than HD. In my experience, FCPX will do just fine with the same type of media.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Dom Silverio
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 19, 2019 at 2:18:17 pm

MPE still assists during playback. The extent depends on the codec. Just tested with XDCAM and XAVC-S, GPU load was significantly higher under OpenCL vs software only.


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greg janza
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 19, 2019 at 3:21:06 pm

You simply cannot get efficient performance in Premiere when using H264 media. Use a proxy workflow and Premiere will work like butter on a laptop.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/tmprods
tallmanproductions.net


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Eric Santiago
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 22, 2019 at 1:58:45 pm

Funny this came up.
I'm doing an assembly on a feature shot with 6K RED HELIUM.
In Avid, Resolve, and Premiere these files are a beast.
But in FCPX (the only app that can sync audio consistently) its freaking butter 😉
This is on a Mac Pro D700 64GG of course.


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Steve Connor
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 22, 2019 at 3:29:01 pm

I'm now editing a project shot on Venice using X-OCN codec, would love to do this natively in FCPX rather than Resolve or PPro ☺


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 3:13:00 pm

[Steve Connor] "Venice using X-OCN codec"

Would it be easier for you to use the built-in Adobe proxy workflow? Or would the transcode be too slow/taxing on your MBP?

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Steve Connor
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 3:54:42 pm

[Oliver Peters] "Would it be easier for you to use the built-in Adobe proxy workflow? Or would the transcode be too slow/taxing on your MBP?
"


I'd always assumed I would need to use Proxies and I'm in the middle of seeing whether PPro or Resolve is quicker at encoding proxies on my machine. Ironically playback of the original files is slightly better in PPro than Resolve.

Either way I'll have to leave it encoding the whole weekend ☺

Footage looks amazing, shot on Venice using Cooke Special Flare Anamorphic Primes :)


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 4:41:09 pm

[Steve Connor] "I'd always assumed I would need to use Proxies and I'm in the middle of seeing whether PPro or Resolve is quicker"

If you use the Adobe workflow, it's self-contained and generally the proxies are there without any extra effort. You can simply toggle between proxy and full-res files. If you create proxies externally, you then have to go through a process of attaching those files to the high-res in Premiere, so that you can then toggle between. Audio configuration of tracks becomes an issue in that case.

The alternative is to create low-res (ProResLT or ProResProxy) files to edit with - using Resolve/AME/Compressor (never introducing the full-res files into the Premiere project). Edit with the low-res as if they were master files. When you are done, relink in Resolve to the full-res. Or remove/hide the low-res and relink in Premiere.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Steve Connor
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 4:53:06 pm

[Oliver Peters] "If you use the Adobe workflow, it's self-contained and generally the proxies are there without any extra effort. You can simply toggle between proxy and full-res files. If you create proxies externally, you then have to go through a process of attaching those files to the high-res in Premiere, so that you can then toggle between. Audio configuration of tracks becomes an issue in that case.

The alternative is to create low-res (ProResLT or ProResProxy) files to edit with - using Resolve/AME/Compressor (never introducing the full-res files into the Premiere project). Edit with the low-res as if they were master files. When you are done, relink in Resolve to the full-res. Or remove/hide the low-res and relink in Premiere."


Thanks Oliver


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 3:14:17 pm

BTW - why are you being "forced" to use Premiere Pro on this project?

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Steve Connor
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 3:50:44 pm

[Oliver Peters] "BTW - why are you being "forced" to use Premiere Pro on this project?"

Project is being "led" by a graphic designer who only uses Adobe and insists on me using it too!


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 4:34:54 pm

[Steve Connor] "Project is being "led" by a graphic designer"

Ugh. It would make more sense if it was a director who also edited or if you were working with a team of editors who only knew Premiere. Oh well.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Steve Connor
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 4:52:01 pm

[Oliver Peters] "Ugh. It would make more sense if it was a director who also edited"

I know, I actually have TWO projects that have exactly the same scenario, not enjoying them at all!


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Eric Santiago
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 7:05:55 pm

[Oliver Peters] "Ugh. It would make more sense if it was a director who also edited or if you were working with a team of editors who only knew Premiere. Oh well."

This is why I have to have all three NLEs under my belt.
To date, I haven't met a client that wants to use Resolve.
I've gone through the wringer with directors, producers, etc.. that want to use but really have no experience with it.
Just have to roll with the punches :P


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 23, 2019 at 7:31:32 pm

[Eric Santiago] "To date, I haven't met a client that wants to use Resolve."

While I have yet to run into a client who wants me to edit on Resolve, I've run into plenty who think they know how to color correct with it. They grade the daylights out of one shot and say "make everything else look like that," without any concept of shot-to-shot flow/matching or the time constraints involved versus their budget.

[Eric Santiago] "I've gone through the wringer with directors, producers, etc."

I run into a few that start a project in a given NLE (used to be FCP, now generally it's Premiere) and make a complete mess out of things. Then they want me to pick up from there. Hey, but that keeps us working!

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Eric Santiago
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 24, 2019 at 1:20:38 pm

[Oliver Peters] "I run into a few that start a project in a given NLE (used to be FCP, now generally it's Premiere) and make a complete mess out of things. Then they want me to pick up from there. Hey, but that keeps us working!
"


Shhhhh trade secrets ;)


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Bill Davis
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 28, 2019 at 6:43:26 pm
Last Edited By Bill Davis on Jul 28, 2019 at 6:46:30 pm

If I was still in a situation where I had to cut with what anyone else told me to cut with - I might seriously consider a new rate sheet structured like this.

Project type A - (start and complete in X) Base Quote.
Project type C - (start in any other NLE, and delivered for me to finish) Base Quote + 50%
Project type D - start in other NLE, have me organize and edit, then requiring assets to be turnedover for use in any
other NLE) Base Quote +100%

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 28, 2019 at 7:09:21 pm

[Bill Davis] "Project type A - (start and complete in X) Base Quote.
Project type C - (start in any other NLE, and delivered for me to finish) Base Quote + 50%
Project type D - start in other NLE, have me organize and edit, then requiring assets to be turnedover for use in any
other NLE) Base Quote +100%"


Huh? Isn't that contrary to your argument that X is faster? If you are charging more to use another NLE and you are supposedly faster on X, then you are really giving the client the middle finger and pricing yourself out of the market. This strategy effectively tells the client that you have no interest in cutting with anything other than X, even though that might not be in the best interest of the client or the project.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Bill Davis
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 28, 2019 at 8:07:38 pm

[Oliver Peters] "Huh? Isn't that contrary to your argument that X is faster? If you are charging more to use another NLE and you are supposedly faster on X, then you are really giving the client the middle finger and pricing yourself out of the market. This strategy effectively tells the client that you have no interest in cutting with anything other than X, even though that might not be in the best interest of the client or the project.
"


Nope.

I'm doing EXACTLY what is appropriate. If a client elects to force me to use a tool that makes my work harder and less efficient, then they have to pay MORE than if they let me use a tool that enables me to be more efficient.

Why? Because efficiency is a thing that benefits EVERYONE. Client and editor alike.

And in any case, I have LONG been staunchly against trading money for time in general.

If you sell your TIME two things are inevitable. The first thing is that your inventory will shrink every second you are alive — even when you are asleep at night. And secondly,, you will make less if you are good and fast, then you will if you are lousy and slow. That has never made ANY sense to me.

Time billing is a construct of accounting and generally benefits the HIRING party by connecting pay to a metric they can used for cost control.

I elect, instead, to charge for EXPERTISE - Never time. It shifts things away from a focus on the process - to a focus on results. It's preciesly why one artist gets far more money for arranging the EXACT same paint on canvas as another.

You are paying for their expertise in obtaining results, not their time.

If your project quotes reflect your expertise, then the time it takes to complete a project shouldn't really matter providing you meet the agreed deadlines. It's how creative output has ALWAYS functioned, really. A great song that takes an hour to write, has no less market value than an equally popular one that took a month to write. So why charge more for one than the other? Makes no sense.

That X is faster (which I completely believe) simply allows me to shift my attention more and more away from the mechanics of assembly - and more and more into the ACTUAL editing - which is really using expertise to curate what to eliminate, what to prioritize, and how to arrange my chosen elements in order to help it to communicate successfully to it's audience.

It's not giving the client "the finger" at all.

It's saying "let me do the real job you are hiring me to do - to create something worthy for you - with tools that I have mastered because I have found they will best help me get you a superior results, faster."

That I may be able to get us there faster is a shining benefit for you! So if I keep MORE money for working LESS time but STILL delivering faster - then we BOTH get motivation to keep this process going.

Thats kinda how I see it.

  

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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greg janza
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 28, 2019 at 8:48:39 pm
Last Edited By greg janza on Jul 28, 2019 at 8:52:36 pm

[Bill Davis] "That X is faster (which I completely believe) simply allows me to shift my attention more and more away from the mechanics of assembly - and more and more into the ACTUAL editing - which is really using expertise to curate what to eliminate, what to prioritize, and how to arrange my chosen elements in order to help it to communicate successfully to it's audience."
This is the same process that every editor employs no matter which software program is being used.

Bill, you sound like a niche independent freelancer where you're working on projects separate from a larger production company or in-house communications department. This gives you more flexibility than an editor who works on projects in conjunction with a production company or someone who works at a client location.

By and large, end clients could care less how you put a video together. The client is usually solely interested in the overall efficiency of the post process since that relates directly to the budget. For example, how seamlessly can an editor send and receive files to and from a colorist and sound mixer to get the final product put together.

Your overall approach is fine for you but for many others there are other factors involved that are equally important to editorial efficiency. And so the notion of being adamant about one way of doing things is really just you being a stubborn editor.

And this approach would be terrible for a any young editor who's attempting to get established in the business. Flexibility is key to surviving. The more skills one has under the belt, the more employable he or she becomes.

https://www.linkedin.com/in/tmprods
tallmanproductions.net


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 28, 2019 at 9:06:58 pm

[Bill Davis] "I'm doing EXACTLY what is appropriate. If a client elects to force me to use a tool that makes my work harder and less efficient, then they have to pay MORE than if they let me use a tool that enables me to be more efficient."

You have it backwards. If you are less efficient, then the client is already paying more, because it takes you longer. So now you are asking to charge a premium on top of what is already more expensive for the client. Doesn't sound like a way to win over a client. Unless, of course, it's a flat bid, which is typically not the case in this type of situation. And besides, no one would be "forcing" you. You either take the job or you don't based on the requirements and your qualifications.

[Bill Davis] "And in any case, I have LONG been staunchly against trading money for time in general. "

That's dumb. An editor is supplying a service and that service is paid against time - by the hour, day, week, month, whatever. It's not a full-service, creative service, like a production company might bid.

[Bill Davis] " and more and more into the ACTUAL editing - which is really using expertise to curate what to eliminate, what to prioritize, and how to arrange my chosen elements in order to help it to communicate successfully to it's audience."

That's the essence of what every editor does on every tool and on every job. You can argue that X let's you do it faster; however, it's impossible to say that you can now pay attention to it purely because you are using X. Any editor worth their salt does that day in and day out on every NLE and does it rather quickly.

And besides, the fastest editor isn't necessarily the best editor in the first place. So to argue that the client gets more value because X allows you to be faster may be an incorrect metric. One thing you aren't factoring in is compatibility with the rest of the operation.

Let's say this is a corporate conference and you are hired to edit the on-site videos. The company is all Adobe-based. They want to supply you with elements and prepared project files done in After Effects and Premiere Pro. At the end, they expect you to turn over Premiere Pro project files that they can revise back at their home base. You are in a pretty weak position trying to argue that X is either faster or better, simply because of the hoops you have to jump through to meet the requirement. And even then you haven't fully satisfied the needs. The bottom line is that in such a situation, the client doesn't hire you, they hire someone who is comfortable with the Adobe suite of tools.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Bill Davis
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 31, 2019 at 3:26:34 pm

[Oliver Peters] "You are in a pretty weak position trying to argue that X is either faster or better, simply because of the hoops you have to jump through to meet the requirement. And even then you haven't fully satisfied the needs. The bottom line is that in such a situation, the client doesn't hire you, they hire someone who is comfortable with the Adobe suite of tools.

- Oliver
"


I simply see this in the following terms.

If a mechanic shop is currently using ALL hand tools - and another shop has made the switch to compressor driven tools - the second shop WILL be more efficient.
Furthermore, the MORE power assisted tools the second shop uses, the overall more efficient they will become.
And if they put in a central compressor system and teach all the shop employees to learn, understand and leverage the maximum number of power assisted tools - that shop will be significantly more efficient than any shop that tries to keep doing things the old way - SIMPLY because that's the way they and their mechanics have always done things.

That's exactly how I see the transition from track-based timelines to magnetic editing.

Sure the old shop has added some power assisted tools to their approach. But I still find it's just not the same as moving the wholistic system forward into a new era.

I know people get angry when I say things like this and feel what I'm ACTUALLY saying is that *they* are old-fashioned or foolish for not using the tools that *I* think they should. But that's actually backwards. I don't CARE what tools anyone else uses. It's NONE OF MY BUSINESS. All I'm doing is articulating how the change of toolset and editing orientation has effected MY productivity over time.

X was transformational for me in that it freed both my time AND my thinking in countless ways - leading to me being a significantly happier editor. And that's all that matters to me.

As to the other critique above about how X is a poor fit for the type of "shop where their work utterly depends on being "compatible" with the clients decisions about which NLE to use — yeah, they are UTTERLY correct.

If that's your goal - to occupy a seat in a shop like that - thats likely your best path. I've worked for a few large enterprises of that type over my career where the inefficiency of their process has been staggering to behold, but to each their own.

But I stand by my positions. If you wish to exhibit a large operation seat editor orientation - then by all means learn the apps that will get you into those seats.

I'm lucky. I can make a fine living without anyone telling me what tools to use to do my work. I KNOW that makes me lucky.

And I appreciate that.

That's all.

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Oliver Peters
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 31, 2019 at 5:50:18 pm
Last Edited By Oliver Peters on Jul 31, 2019 at 6:23:05 pm

[Bill Davis] "If a mechanic shop is currently using ALL hand tools - and another shop has made the switch to compressor driven tools - the second shop WILL be more efficient. "

That's too simplistic of an analogy. The end product is a fixed customer car (assuming it's an auto mechanic). That's not the case for most editors. Yes, the end result is a finished video/film/program, but it can also include the work product (project files). So if you have the luxury of delivering the former without needing to deliver the latter, then either tool is fine - whatever makes you the most efficient. But if both are required, then you have to go with whatever the client dictates, if that's part of the job specification.

Besides you are arguing power tools versus by hand, when in fact, it's really just a disagreement about brands of power tools.

[Bill Davis] "If that's your goal - to occupy a seat in a shop like that - thats likely your best path."

Yet, that's exactly the situation most editors find themselves in and are quite happy doing so.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters - oliverpeters.com


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Joe Marler
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 29, 2019 at 11:39:27 am

[Steve Connor] "Day to day I edit using FCPX on a top spec 2015 MacBook Pro, very happy with the speed I get with XAVC material shot on FS7 and FS5's, I also use a lot of library material which is mostly .h264 - never have any speed problems at all.

Last couple of weeks I've been forced back to editing on Premiere Pro and I'm genuinely shocked by how slow the performance is, even scaling down to 1/4 or 1/8th res I don't get great playback at all, have Adobe not caught up yet?"


Each codec behaves differently on each NLE. Sony's XAVC, esp XAVC-S is somewhat sluggish in FCPX on an iMac Pro, but that is nonetheless lightning fast relative to Premiere on the same hardware. Resolve 15 and later is also much faster than Premiere in terms of decode and scrubbing latency.

Part of the perceived performance difference lies in how you edit. If you drag the playhead and wait a second, then Premiere doesn't seem so bad. However if you use JKL commands a lot, then Premiere is very slow on that codec. Moving between fast forward and reverse via JKL can cause lags in the program monitor of several seconds, even with the display at 1/4 resolution.

This might be an issue with Premiere not supporting Quick Sync or other hardware-based decode accelerators such as T2 on the Mac platform. Supposedly Adobe is working to improve this. At least they support Quick Sync for export in some cases. If you are not on the latest version of Premiere and MacOS it makes sense to upgrade these.

However I just tested the latest Premiere 13.1.4 on my 10-core Vega64 iMac Pro running macOS 10.14,6, and several common H264 codecs are all slow. This includes 4k XAVC-S and similar 4k 100 mbps 4:2:0 material from a DJI drone and a Panasonic GH5. The XAVC-S variant seems a bit slower than the others.

It didn't make any difference whether using OpenCL or Metal in the playback engine. In all cases I had the program monitor set to 1/4 resolution.

You may have to just create proxies. Fortunately Premiere now supports those. Even on FCPX I must create proxies for those codecs if doing multicam.


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Joe Marler
Re: Premiere on a MacBook Pro - ugh!
on Jul 29, 2019 at 11:43:23 am

[Steve Connor] "Day to day I edit using FCPX on a top spec 2015 MacBook Pro, very happy with the speed I get with XAVC material shot on FS7 and FS5's, I also use a lot of library material which is mostly .h264 - never have any speed problems at all.

Last couple of weeks I've been forced back to editing on Premiere Pro and I'm genuinely shocked by how slow the performance is, even scaling down to 1/4 or 1/8th res I don't get great playback at all, have Adobe not caught up yet?"


Each codec behaves differently on each NLE. Sony's XAVC, esp XAVC-S is somewhat sluggish in FCPX on an iMac Pro, but that is nonetheless lightning fast relative to Premiere on the same hardware. Resolve 15 and later is also much faster than Premiere in terms of decode and scrubbing latency.

Part of the perceived performance difference lies in how you edit. If you drag the playhead and wait a second, then Premiere doesn't seem so bad. However if you use JKL commands a lot, then Premiere is very slow on that codec. Moving between fast forward and reverse via JKL can cause lags in the program monitor of several seconds, even with the display at 1/4 resolution.

This might be an issue with Premiere not supporting Quick Sync or other hardware-based decode accelerators such as T2 on the Mac platform. Supposedly Adobe is working to improve this. At least they support Quick Sync for export in some cases. If you are not on the latest version of Premiere and MacOS it makes sense to upgrade these.

However I just tested the latest Premiere 13.1.4 on my 10-core Vega64 iMac Pro running macOS 10.14,6, and several common H264 codecs are all slow. This includes 4k XAVC-S and similar 4k 100 mbps 4:2:0 material from a DJI drone and a Panasonic GH5. The XAVC-S variant seems a bit slower than the others.

It didn't make any difference whether using OpenCL or Metal in the playback engine. In all cases I had the program monitor set to 1/4 resolution.

You could test whether re-wrapping the Sony codecs with EditReady then importing with "Leave Files In Place" helps any. In a few cases external re-wrapping seems to help.

You may have to just create proxies. Fortunately Premiere now supports those. Even on FCPX I must create proxies for those codecs if doing multicam.


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