In two words: Flexibility and Control
For the past few years, AVID and especially Final Cut Pro have been our NLE platforms of choice; with Avid as our high-end editing application and Final Cut as the everyday, workhorse solution. Adobe products have always been a part of our post-production arsenal, such as After Effects, Photoshop, and Illustrator, but in terms of an NLE, the ease of use and familiarity of the FCP platform (prior to X) was what we always fell back on. UNTIL NOW.
With the release of Final Cut X, we noticed some concerns within the industry. This was primarily attributed to, what appeared to be an emphasis place on the amateur consumer market and a departure away from professional editors, in terms of features. Also, FiveSix relies heavily on our ability to refer to our archives, which were all cut on early versions of FCP, which X initially did not support.
When Walter Murch, a highly decorated editor, with such credits as Godfather II and Apocolypse Now, viewed X for the first time, he stated, “I can’t use this” (Macaulay, 2011). In a Boston seminar speaking about the new FCP release, he listed several disappointing, underachieving elements that Apple failed to include and felt as if FCP was turning their back on the professional editors that had been loyal to the software for years.
Even with the recent fixes in the FCP platform, including the ability to work with edits that were cut in previous versions of the software, the damage had been done for us. As soon as we identified the limitations of the new FCP, we sought other options. One such option was Adobe Premiere, which was a NLE that we had experimented in the past but never considered migrating to.
When the commitment to make a change was made, we decided to continue editing with FCP 7 but beta test Premiere for a couple editing jobs to ensure that Adobe’s offering was going to be the right fit for our company. We knew immediately that we made the right decision. First and foremost, the bridging capabilities with other Adobe Products that compliment the editing process is exponentially beneficial. Also, the elimination of the transcoding of footage that was so bothersome with FCP, makes life incredibly easier. We shoot a lot in Panasonic’s P2 format and what would have taken FCP hours, depending on the job, only takes Premiere a fraction of the time. FInally, Premiere offers a level of control that appears unmatched. Because of the inherent creative capabilites that can be found in Adobe’s flagship Photoshop and Illustrator software, an application like Premiere has acquired the same ability to manipulate and sculpt images like no other program.
All in all, FiveSix’s migration to Adobe Premiere has been a great success. In our opinion, the missteps of Apple’s Final Cut X has given our organization the ability to offer our clients better quality and the ability to expand our creative horizons.
Macaulay, S. (2011, October 29). Walter murch on fcp x: “what is the ‘pro’ part of it?”. Retrieved from http://www.filmmakermagazine.com/news/2011/10/walter-murch-on-fcp-x-what-is-the-pro-part-of-it/