After Careful consideration...
After The release of X-FCP, I was upset, and so were many others, but this last month I took it upon myself to use all 3 editing platforms.
I had 3 projects coming up so I decide to randomly cut each on a different platform. Now since i come from I FCP background Im trying not to play favorites, so I took time out of the equation since i'll be slower on avid, Premiere and X-FCP. that said it was a fun and frustrating experience.
Project 1 was a top 10 countdown I did in avid
(These were selected randomly)
Project 2 was an Commercial Cut on Adobe Premiere
Project 3 was a series of be hide the scenes interviews cut on X-FCP
let the games begin.....
Project 1 - MC 5.5
I was greatly impressed that when importing footage into MC 5.5 it automatically transcoded it for me, being h.264, avi, of mpeg, I loved this feature! it did take time to transcode but is was nice not having to make everything proress for once.
The Bin system was easy to work with and straight forward. The Interface at first glance looked easy to understand. I was able to cut and get my job done, but sadly took notice that Avid (MC 5.5) is purely a "cutting" program, sure i can key frame do titles and other stuff in Avid, but i found myself more in after effects for anything but actual cutting. The interface also seemed extremely cold and dead, I kept getting this vibe of "I can only cut video, go get your VFX artist...." witch in a professional Post house would have been the case. But non the less Avid seemed to only want to cut video, audio adjustments and GFX were something i notice it could do but not as well as FCP, FCPX, or Premiere.
Project 2 - Adobe Premiere
WOW just WOW, I felt right at home with the structure and interface, and the fact that i didn't need to transcode anything was AMAZING! Just import it right in and your cutting. The fact that I could work in After effects and Premiere at the same time was a life saver, I could import a After Effects project in Premiere, and if i need to change timing go into After Effects , Change it, go back into Premiere and boom changes applied. TItles and Keyframes were a snap, and the final project turned out great. Over all Premiere was a little easier to grasp.
Project 3 - X-FCP
I've used iMovie 08 before and felt right At home again here, Everything was easy to work with and although it took some time to deal with the magnetic timeline I got use to it. And the Speed was awesome although I did have to wait for certain clips to "Background render before I could export my project) These were simple cuts and FCPX did it well, however the deeper I got into it the more I noticed how much stuff was missing. I had to cut 6 interviews. Getting these in new sequences/projects to be open at the same time was allot more convoluted that I would have liked. It was obvious that this program was meant to tackle one project in the timeline at a time. The Color Tools were actually not as bad as everyone was making it out to be, Key framing and Title were simple. However when it came time to export out I had 2 options, "youtube and Facebook" I didn't purchase Compressor 4, this would had fixed this issue but why do I need to purchase more software? AVid, Premiere, and FCP all give me custom options, in FCPX these option have been stripped away for some reason. Some of the compound clips options I found fun but couldn't really think of a time i would use them for any project other then to keep my timeline looking nice. It worked, well, but it felt just like any version of iMovie after 2008.
Avid felt to cold and machine like, I really didn't feel any love from it at all, I could tell that this is mainly used in a Team Environment, Where you have a GFX artist, Sound Mixer, and Colorist ready to give you Final Quick-times to simply place in your timeline. Maybe things well change in 6.0
FCPX was easy, maybe a little to easy, when I needed more control/options they weren't there and I felt that it was easier because of this. But I do need some control for certain projects.
Adobe was Amazingly fast, I never needed to render or transcode a single thing and it worked with After Effects like Bees with Honey. And Most of all I enjoyed Cutting on it.
This is just my experience i went though going solo. Im sure people would tell I didnt understand the programs etc, but It was my Review/test run. Hope it was informative.
I wear many hats.
Avids keyframe/fx tweaking definately leaves something to be desired, but AvidFx (Boris Red) is really really powerfull and more sophisticated than FCp ever was, but the curve is really steep and theres not a ton of stuff on the net offering other than the simplest of direction. Dig deep, tho and it turns out to be really really cool.
The other thing i dont like about Avid is the Color Correction, mostly i havent figured out a way to get the scopes in there own detachable windows and the scopes dont update realtime either. Kind of bugs a little bit when doing pre grading and the like.
As far as it being an Editor, hands down for me the most stable, and intuitive NLE.
I can see Premiere being the next "logical" step from FCP classic but i dont know. Im still not sold, and still have yet to hear any buzz about in Los Angeles. That said, im pretty confident, that i could jump on w/o much training and get er done so im not worried about learning it YET. We'll see what the future holds.
Neil Goodman: Editor of New Media Production - NBC/Universal
I would suggest there are more than just 3 Mac options (PPro, MC, FCP X). Media 100 still remains a viable option for many, especially when combined with Boris Red for effects. Lightworks has announced their intention to port to Mac OS by the end of the year. (Free plus a minor charge for codec support.) Smoke on the Mac is tremendous for finishing work, but pricier than the other choices. Also for what it's worth, Vegas Pro actually does quite well under Boot Camp and/or Parallels.
Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
I use Avid and FCP.
Not here to argue or go back and forth, but you really have no idea what your talking about in terms of what Avid can do. You can pretty much do anykind of effects, Color correct, audio adjustments that you can do in FCP.
You just need to learn the program.
Just a different opinion from someone who use's both systems
Broadway Video, NYC
[Scott Cumbo] " You can pretty much do anykind of effects, Color correct, audio adjustments that you can do in FCP"
I never said it couldn't
I just need to sit down with an In house AVid editor and have him show me the Ropes, Reading and tutorials only get me so far.. :)
I wear many hats.
Avid editor here -- As others have said, you can do all your effects inside Avid if you learn the program. However, Premiere Pro blows the socks off Avid (and any other program) when it comes to effects and general render power. I'm not surprised you warmed up to Premiere in that category. I don't use Ppro very much, but whenever I do I sometimes get that old school analog feeling when scrubbing footage, because it reacts so fast it might as well be tape :p
I have also recently moved to Premiere from FCP (a move I now wish I'd made a year ago). I don't know how much broadcast or film work will ever be done on PP, but the corporate & commercials sector is where I make most of my money and I can see Premiere taking a large share of Final Cut's business in this market.
[Benjamin Mullins] " I don't know how much broadcast or film work will ever be done on PP, but the corporate & commercials sector is where I make most of my money and I can see Premiere taking a large share of Final Cut's business in this market."
FYI I use PrPro for nothing but broadcast. You need a third party IO card if your broadcasters still want tape. (Mine do. Curse them.) I use a Matrox MXO2 LE that allows me to output with closed captions.
This is a derail but I'd like to know if you have a contribution to this thread:
Though my trial has now expired I couldn't get PPro to work with my Matrox. My impression is that problems are common. I'm inclined to wait for the next upgrade to see if the situation improves. Any insight would be appreciated.
I wish I could help. I'm not on a Mac. One thing I have noticed is that many of the complaints, both Mac and Win, seem to be related to the PrPro 5.51 update which I found does have some issues with overlay and and the Matrox 5.51 drivers. It may be the same on the Mac.
I've reverted back to PrPro 5.50 and the 5.5 Matrox drivers until the issues get sorted out over the next little while.
I'm a little late to this thread, and I see others have posted in defense of Avid, but I'll add my .02 worth. We're doing an extremely VFX heavy show for Showtime and doing TONS of temp vfx right in the timeline -- no need to go elsewhere. The VFX super from Stargate FX is constantly impressed with our temps, and they're basically copying what we've done. Lots of compositing with tracking, paint effects, traveling rotoscopes and mattes, all with the built-in Avid effects on the timeline. One of our editors did one effect this season in AE, and that's the only one we didn't do in the Avid natively -- although we could have.
I understand personal preference, but I just wanted to make it clear that Avid is EXTREMELY powerful and is more than JUST an editor. However, to use it to it's full potential you it you definitely need to dig deep.