It comes as no surprise that Adobe has a big video tools reveal in store for NAB 2014. All the video apps in the Creative Cloud get updated as the slow and steady advance of their video tools continue. It’s no surprise that Adobe Premiere Pro CC gets my main focus as the NLE keeps getting better. Check out detail on After Effects and the other CC apps as well. While there are signature new features that will get most of the press there’s a lot of utilitarian things that hardcore storytellers will appreciate. No word on exactly when this will ship but keep an eye toward the Creative Cloud.
Yes, the flashy new effects related additions to this updated version of PPro will get lots of press and deservedly so. Things like Master Clip Effects, After Effects text templates and built-in source clip Masking and Tracking are great additions and we’ll touch on them later. But for now … it’s these little things that many craft editors like myself will most appreciate. Under the hood changes which will make a difference in their day to day editing doldrums, much more-so than the effecty ones. These are a lot of the really nice, little updates I noticed while working with this new version.
Additional import options for Premiere project files
When scanning the What’s New doc this first caught my eye. When using it I said a hallelujah. PPro had a bad habit of having to reimport all existing media into your project when sharing a timeline with another editor or even another project. And since you can only open one PPro project at a time this could mean hundreds (or thousands) of duplicate master clips in a project. While there were apparently ways around this (which I was never able to make work) we now have a much more simple option.
From my initial tests it looks like importing duplicate media is a thing of the past.
Just adding a few checkboxes in this new Import Project dialog box gives the editor options. Might this make the process of bringing in another edit sequence a bit more complex? Yes. Does this go against the philosophy of some other NLEs? Yes. Does is make this important process of bringing in another sequence too complex and confusing? Heavens no.
If you’re smart enough to use Premiere Pro you’re certainly smart enough to deal with a few new menus items and check boxes that allow for more customization of the NLE and better workflows.
Turn off FX Badge setting
Hey … this is new.
Here’s a welcome little check box that I asked specifically about in my CC review last year calling the FX Badges “annoying little fx buttons.” That may have been a bit harsh but they seemed to get in the way more often than they were useful.
Ahhh … that’s better. Go away FX Badges.
But something else I noticed means you might not have to actually turn those FX Badges off to make them less annoying. They’ve been moved to the left of the clip which is nice. But they also appear to only be accessible via a right+click instead of just a regular click when means they’ll pop-up less when you don’t want them.
Maintain audio pitch while shuttling
Speaking of a little check box that makes a big difference, this update adds pitch corrected audio when scrubbing and JKL shuttling.
Now the FCPX users will have one less thing to feel superior about.
Pitch correction works well and is especially understandable when playing slomo while holding K and L. The fast shuttling at beyond double time isn’t quite as understandable as FCPX’s fast-shuttle pitch correction but it’s way better than the chipmunks we heard before. I honestly don’t know why anyone would turn this preference off unless performance takes a hit. I didn’t notice any in my testing.
Preserve bin structure on import
This one is pretty self-explanatory from the title and very, very welcome. If you’ve got carefully DIT’d footage coming in from set then keeping those folders all intact upon import can be a big timesaver when it comes to organizing for the edit.
Have you carefully organized your media from the shoot?
Those folders will now be preserved upon import.
The preserving of the folder structure works both when you use the Media Browser for import as well as dragging a folder in from the Finder (or presumably whatever the Windows equivalent of the Finder is).
Auto-save to Creative Cloud
Another preference checkbox that is pretty easy to understand.
Check that box. Another backup done.
This is a nice security blanket and, if you’re like me, you probably have a lot of unused Creative Could space in your 20 gigs so what better way to fill some of that than to have your PPro project file backed up to the cloud.
And once the autosave has happened the files can be managed from the Creative Cloud interface.
This looks to be a straight backup of the project file. It might be worth keeping an eye on project file sizes as there have been reports of the Warp Stabilizer causing the project size to balloon but overall this is a nice little addition.
Assign more than one keyboard shortcut to a command
This is a little one that might not affect many users but I’ve run into it before. In most NLEs you can assign a command to one or more keyboard shortcuts but you haven’t been able to in PPro. Now you can.
Just click the space next to a keyboard command and you get a blank button. Type a key to assign a new command. That little x gets rid of it.
And the Keyboard Shortcut box has now been assigned a default keyboard short cut of OPTION+COMMAND+K. Now if they could just make it easier to manage the shortcut settings overall. If you change a setting you still have to overwrite your old saved settings by typing the name exactly the same. That’s still a pain. And a visual keyboard map would be even better.
Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera support and CinemaDNG Source Settings
BMPCC camera raw CinemaDNG files are supported in this version as are a larger number of CinemaDNG files overall. Blackmagic CinemaDNG files also get a new Source Settings option via a right click on the file or a menu item. The new dialog box let you adjust the look of the file.
In the version I was using I couldn’t see the Source Settings dialog box image update as I tweaked the settings but the file itself did update upon closing.
Alpha channel transparency viewable in the Source monitor
Do you have a graphic or Quicktime file with an alpha channel? You’ll be able to see that now when loaded in the Source monitor.