News, Information & Workflows from Users & the Adobe Ae Team

We are here to compete…

Thought I would post a couple thoughts since I have been receiving a TON of email asking for comment on the FCPX release etc.

First – let me say this:

Before coming to Adobe my preferred tool for editing was FCP. Premiere CS4 was installed as part of master collection. Back then every time I had to use it, I didn’t like it – It wasn’t better than FCP and it did things differently – so I ignored it.

Then jump ahead in time and I am interviewing for the job as AE product manager, and I was honest in my interviews of what I thought about Premiere when asked about it. Where they had me though? – I hadn’t even tried the latest version.

So I tried Premiere CS 5.

Sure it ‘felt’ a little different. There are small things that annoy me such as project settings at the beginning. But then it just worked. OMG. It REALLY worked…fast.

In CS5 Adobe had done a complete rewrite of the guts in Premiere to 64 bit on both MAC and PC, and listened to users about how the application should change – dozens of changes throughout the application to make it ‘just work’.

My point is: If Adobe focus was so clear that it was willing to put that much of an investment into re-architecting an application that was being dismissed or ignored by many – that showed to me that Adobe was VERY serious about winning in the professional market, seat by seat. Frankly, that was what helped me make up my mind to join the company. When I joined I found out how strong the acceptance of Premiere had been in the time I was ignoring it.

To all those asking me for comment on the launch of FCPX, I have none. What right do I have to publicly comment on the hard work any vendor does in creating software and bringing it to market?

What I CAN comment on is our software and how we bring it to market. Adobe has and will continue to focus on EARNING the right to be your tools of choice as you tell your story, and deliver professional content. We know that not all is perfect, but we will LISTEN, engage in dialogue and constantly improve our software. We will also innovate in ways that will continue to streamline workflow and unlock creative potential.

In short – we are here to compete for your business, and we believe we can win.


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It’s nice to see people being honest about what they feel, which is a rarity in today’s tough competition. I have always been a fan of Adobe Premiere and it’s nice to see that they care about what people say.

Keep on the good work.

I use Final Cut. When FCPX came out, I was so excited that I downloaded it the moment it was released. Then, I found out how difficult and unusable it was. So, as of now, I am sticking with FCP7, but, I will keep Premiere in the back of my mind in the future. Premiere was actually the first non-linear editing program I used.

Now… that’s a statement. A company that actually talks to it’s users and it interested in their needs. What a fresh breath of air for a change. You got my vote, guys. Bought CS5.5 the other day and I am looking forward to using it.

What a wonderfully refreshing perspective. As a long time “lover” of AE its nice to see a hard working innovative company getting the break it so deserves. All I can do is quote a phrase I have seen a lot on the web these last few days…”Adobe get it.”

Correction …… Adobe gets it.

There is so much to be said for listening and communicating. I’m a filmmaker who dabbles in web for my video clients and when I jumped all over flash catalyst beta, it was fantastic to troubleshoot my problems with adobe employees. I’m switching to premiere because every other aspect of my workflow is adobe. Graphics, Compositing and DVD work.. Haven’t messed with sound booth yet but willing to jump in!

[ If you have CS 5.5 – Give Audition a go. Just came back to the Mac. -S. ]

“In short – we are here to compete for your business, and we believe we can win.”


“There are small things that annoy me such as project settings at the beginning”


So, change that!
There are a still avery few annoying things in Pr AND Ae AND Illustrator AND Ps that have to be sorted out.
GO and read the forums, listen to the user and make an Impact to Apples Arrogance.

Personally I’m done with Apple, i do not want to spend any dime in Apple Hard- and Software anymore!!
The release day of FCPX was truly a Black Day in Apple Software History. Period.

[ Please make sure you participate in the forums as well. It is a BIG resource that gets heavy scrutiny by the teams here at Adobe. Realize it can be frustrating sometimes as it is impossible to do everything – but we try our best to prioritize. Those forums carry much weight. -S. ]

Adobe, you have been effectively competing against very stiff opposition. You should feel proud of CS5.5. One of your biggest opponents has just handed you an opportunity you will never see again. Please don’t blow it.

Premiere is an excellent tool, and can surely compete with FCPX – the only problem is that you don’t have an alternative to Color (either separate product or within Premiere) which makes the DI-workflow so much easier within the FCP-suite.

It’s always good to hear someone from a big company be upfront and honest. I’ll probably stick with FCP though as I only do small editing jobs and don’t need any of the missing features.

It’s a shame your print apps don’t seem to have had as much love as your video apps.

I do love AE though, even if it is like an ugly bodybuilder. Great power with an ugly face (UI).

Steve, thanks for letting users know that Adobe does care, and does listen. After Effects is am amazing program and Premiere seems to be a good successor for FCP7 users looking to move on. The only issue now is perception. The perception of, “imagine telling my client that I am editing in Premiere”, a former joke of the pro editing world. Adobe needs to keep plugging away from a software standpoint, and looking toward FCPX for a few of the things Apple actually got right. Background rendering, super fast playback without as strict of a graphics card restriction, metadata galore. Then from a PR perspective, get people using it. Give it to large companies for free for 1 version, get articles written about how its changing their workflows, get people editing docs and films on it. Apple touts all the academy award winning pieces edited with FCP, it gives them credibility (unlike their latest software release), Adobe needs to get big users using their software and build the Premiere name. From someone who would love for their company to take up Premiere, I can say its going to be an uphill battle. Avid has a much bigger name in the editing world, and it will be a likely choice for my company and others. Especially because a lot of these companies came from Avid before switching to FCP.

[ Dave – thanks for this. These are good points, and are definitely things to consider. We have had some good wins on high profile projects as of late (Social Network, Monsters, Boardwalk Empire, Water for Elephants etc) and will be focusing on many of the things you describe. – S. ]

    Steve, great to hear about those great productions using Premiere. However, looking them up, the only one I could even find much about was The Social Network, and it seems as if that was mainly cut in FCP. Again, if the others were cut in premiere, issue press releases, blog it. Talk to bloggers about it. Get Post magazine to do pieces on it.

    Also, keep up the training for switchers on the blog. For instance, everything is native in Premiere, so why does my material always seem to have a needs render indicator, even if I am working in ProRes in a ProRes sequence?

    Other good FCPX features to look into is the auto transcode on import. It does it in the background, and when the new clip is ready, it is automatically switched out. Also, the option to analyze on import for stabilization. It does it in the background, so for instance if you ported warp stabilize to Premiere, it could literally be 1 click.

    Another great features would be to have dynamic link with AE work with rendering out files. So you could send to AE, then render, it automatically gets put in a layer in your timeline, or in a FCPXesque compound clip. Then you can just double click on the render to edit the comp again in AE again, and replace your render. While we’re at it, compound clips in FCPX are a very cool feature to look into (but don’t kill nests like they did.)

    [ Hear loud and clear. Will speak to my counterpart Al Mooney (He is the product manager for Premiere Pro) about what you suggest. Also – I don’t want to set the expectation that Premiere was used exclusively in those productions. It was more in conjunction with After Effects – but its a start. You are definitely right about telling the world – expect to hear more VERY soon. – S. ]

      Also, I definitely agree with the commenter who discussed the major role of Color in the former final cut studio. I know AE comes with Color Finesse, not sure if it works natively in premiere or is included with the install. That needs to be popularized, also perhaps it would be great to include yet another native keyer, like Magic Bullet Colorista. It seems to be a great tool, and actually includes masking in the secondaries, one area Color Finesse falls short.

      P.S. While your at it, throw a real masking tool into Premiere, FCP users wanted it, Avid has it.

      Haha, did I give you a big enough list! Keep up the good work.

I’m a college prof, the college I started out at used Premiere, Premiere was so unstable I convinced the College to switch to FCP 9 years ago. Now I’m moving to a new college this fall and we are building a new mac lab with 20 computers which were all going to have FCPX. However I feel burned with the amateur program of FCPX and I’m upset that I taught so many students to use FCP, it seems like such a waste. I see this as a great opportunity for Adobe, can you or will you offer any incentives for us to switch? thanks

[ I will look into what options are available. -S. ]

>We have had some good wins on high profile projects as of late (Social Network, Monsters,
>Boardwalk Empire, Water for Elephants etc)

Sounds a bit too much like “Because George Lucas uses product X, you must use it, too!” Not everything that’s good for Hollywood or big US TV networks is good for garage shops, you know and then there’s only one truth here – on big budget productions, everything gets used once in a while, including your competitors’ tools. The rest is just marketing fluff. And I’m sure you would even agree that from a business standpoint it’s not the most relevant argument, when for each one of those big facilities there are 100 small ones that drive your cash flow just the same…

[ Good point as well. The Point of the Point? It’s a balance… like all things in life 😉 -S. ]

Steve, thanks for the post, a nice balance of competitive positioning and diplomacy.

When I left TV to start the video practice at our agency I lobbied for FCP. But because half the firm is web development/design (flash etc.), we were handed Premiere CS4.

At first, I have to admit I was disappointed, not by the software, but because it “wasn’t FCP’

Two years later, as we transition from CS5 to CS5.5, we’re producing video content for multinational organizations (BlackBerry, Pfizer, Allstate) and PP has met pretty much all of our needs. Native editing with Red and 5D footage just one of the benefits for us. I just hope Adobe jumps on this opportunity.

IMO you should be telling stories like ours, using the medium you should excel at, video. And beyond “How to’s”

Capture the EDITING CULTURE SHIFT that’s about to happen and visualize it for everyone to see. Would love to help.

Mike Edgell

I love Photoshop. It’s essentially magic, and nobody does anything remotely like it in terms of power and ease of use.

That said, I wish, with all my heart, that the Reader team didn’t {hate, despise, ignore} the Mac. Every single experience with the Reader application I have ever had has been negative on OSX. (To be fair, on OS9, it was a good product, but also to be fair, that was 10+ years ago). Reader is a product where I feel neglected, ignored and abused. Sadly, I *have* to use it to fill out a number of PDF forms on a regular enough basis that I can’t install/uninstall every time I need it. Please, please, please do something about this. Pass word down the chain, whatever. Reader tarnishes Adobe’s name every time I’m forced to use it.

[ Will pass along. -S. ]

You mean you just didn’t publish a F.A.Q. with your thoughts and leave everything open for interpretation? :)

I am a long-time FCP user, cutting for broadcast TV. I’m still going through FCPX and evaluating it for my needs. Thankfully my workflow is 100% tapeless so the lacking features of FCPX don’t affect me. The new interface does, and so far I like what I see after going through some tutorials. It’s different (in a good way, IMHO) but will it hold up to my old workflow? Time will tell.

What Adobe needs to be thinking about doing right now (TODAY) is offering a competitive upgrade price for Premiere. I don’t know how you would do that in today’s world of digital software delivery (I can’t fax you my UPC bar code from the box I don’t have), but you need to figure something out.

Yes, I downloaded the 30 day trial of Premiere and I poked around. I even exported a full half-hour TV show from FCP and imported it into Premiere. It worked surprisingly well, but there were a LOT of glitches with filters and things that did not import properly (everything authored in Motion needs to be re-done). So, while it is probably the best solution (at this time) to migrate my old FCP7 projects, it will still take work to migrate those old projects to Premiere.

My point is that I’ll have to do a lot of work no matter what I do… starting fresh with FCPX and keeping FCP7 around, or going with Premiere. I have Premiere for 30 days but my decision might take longer. If Adobe had an incentive to purchase, I wouldn’t hesitate just to have it available in my arsenal of editing tools.

Throw a bone out to all those “lost” Apple customers, and keep listening to your users and building software for THEM… Adobe will prevail in the end.

[ Thanks for the comment. I do know something is in the works that hopefully will be announced VERY soon. -S. ]

I’ve been recommending Premiere to all the angry FCP users over the past week. The feedback I’ve received is that there are a few things holding some of them back:

1. Adobe really needs to buy a high end color correction tool and incorporate it, ASAP. Right away you will win over many fence-sitters. There is a window of opportunity here, and waiting to improve the existing tools may not be an option.

2. Include Adobe Live for free, in perpetuity. If you can tout things like Story, and Reviews etc. without the “catch” of it costing extra later on, that’s a win.

3. Many studios these days are working with remote teams, freelancers etc. and that presents unique workflow challenges that Adobe would benefit by addressing. I think there’s a real opportunity here for cloud-based collaboration. Just a thought.

    I’ve been a user of Premiere since I started and never a fan of FCP. I’ve also long been a a big fan of Cineform. All this marketing stuff re “native editing” is all good but I still wish to have Cineform at my disposal if I want it.

    I like their First Light realtime color correction utilizing active meta data. I’ve long been disappointed by not being able to use Cineform along with PPro’s multi-cam feature (needs to increased from current 4-camera limit). I was told by the head honch at Cineform that that portion of PPro’s API (multi-cam) was off limits to third-party developers. I’ve stated that on another forum and it was denied by an Adobe marketing person who said he know that Cineform exec refuted me saying “never and he’d look into this but neber came back to that particular forum to refute the statement I made.

    I highly doubt that FCP users would ever willingly accept not being able to optionally transcode to ProRes. Would they? I feel the same re Cineform.

    I think I also recall Blackmagic saying the same thing re the API for multi-cam being walled off to third-party developers. What is the official story line from Adobe on this matter?

    I’m still on CS3 which has suited me well but I’ve delayed upgrading to CS5 because I was waiting to see what Apple had in store with this new FCP X. I’m no longer considering that as a vaiable alternative but I still need to know what the story is with Cineform-multicam editing.

    I want to see the ability to use Cineform in multi-cam.

    [ I need to do some digging on this and get back to you. I do know that since Cineform was acquired things are different in how we as a 3rd party can access it. Will contact you off-blog as soon as I learn more. -S. ]

This may be a bit off topic, but I am wondering… we called Adobe Germany today to purchase at least 2 seats of Premiere 5.5 for now. a.) The customer service was incredibly rude and arrogant and hadn’t even heard about the FCPX problems. Joking around whether there are any discounts now for companies running FCP willing to switch over to Premiere – the strange customer service person freaked out – Adobe would never do something like this… alright.
In addition – all tax games aside, why does any European store (Germany, UK, etc) charge almost double the price as the US store? The customer service and this very strange pricing model turned us off right on the spot. In a situation where we are rethinking our entire post workflow. oh boy…
Compliments on the great work that has been done on Premiere CS5.5 though.

[ Really? That’s just plain rude and inexcusable. I am forwarding your message to our sales team, and can assure you that it will be followed up on. In the meantime – go to this link and get 50% off production premium. I can’t comment on pricing structure, but there is a TON of accounting involved WAY beyond my capacity. -S. ]

    Thank you!

sounds so true and pretty scary to be frank.

I do not understand who drives adobe to the product cycles by charging now for every point release, that means from CS 5 to CS 5.5 with (by all respect) no really significant changes and features which would blow our socks off.

Next. Price in general. Why do we have to pay a horrendous amount of money for the suites (English software language) over the German store while the prices in the US store dropping nearly 50% (i mean regular prices, not the SWITCH) and we even pay more for the download and less for the shipped box. Any ideas on that? You may ask the Adobe CEO.

Next. Why does the Adobe Softw. Dev. -Teams do not work closely together? Why must Ae differ so much from Pr workflow and UI vice-versa and why the hell must Ai differ so much from Ps from workflow and pretty much from UI and usability? Just, WHY it’s so hard for you to unify things and think about a nifty and solid UI scheme = see blogpost above?

Adobe is improving, no question, but since so many years of sending in the same feature request – which several user have agreed with – over and over again, and contributing in the forums … i’m asking myself just one thing: (no offending and respecting your hard work) Why such a big company is working DOG SLOW on improvements, even on the tiniest changes that people are ranting for years? I mean, the Forums are full of information BY REAL WORLD USERS you can use.

Last but not least i have to agree with Jeffery Harells ball on the whole Mercury Playback and CUDA stuff.
Why Adobe is making agreements with third party graphics chip manufacturer like NVidia and expel users like me who is buying a shiny brand new macbook pro that has only ATI and Intel graphics built in.
I really feel messed around …

Just a few thoughts from a user out there in the big, big universe.

    Since I was on vacation last week – I will reply to this now…

    Check out: to hear a few more thoughts from the same person you referenced.

    Suffice to say – we work hard on improvements every cycle and get a ton of feedback on what users feel should be improved. That is the point of this post. We will listen, and work hard to constantly improve our software.


nice post+ good writng tnks

BTW. because you’re not answering e-mails:

Can you PLEASE name me the shortcut for render preview in AE on an mobile device such any OS “Laptop” or “Macbook (Pro)” without taking action for the shortcut prefs deep down there in the system abyss?

Otherwise start from scratch, serioulsy!!

[ well uh.. SERIOUSLY! you can just use the space bar or control-0 on a laptop to preview. -S. ]

    Uhmm :/ I feel like an idiot now.
    Have these shortcuts been changed within CS5?

Hi all,

I’ve been editing broadcast and commercials on Premiere for 6 years, on FCP for 5 years now, Avid since last month.

Oh boy, Adobe has a great shot to win this game if it handles very quickly.

Yes, make the pricing in the European stores more fair and equal to the US pricing,

Yes add a color corrector suite (like COLOR, or even better; Da Vinci) but…

—> also add this nice feature AVID offers: HEADS and tails (or ENDS)

just ask any AVID editor out there what it is, it is a great timesaving tool

I loved it so much that I programmed a marcro shortcut to add it to my FCP workflow
after I’ve discovered it in my trial AVID MC.

Please ADOBE, include it: it chops of the beginning of a clip or the end from where the timemarker is positioned in ripple mode and all that in just 1 easy keyboard stroke….

see this in action and fall in love, going through rushes was never easier….

1 click – no mouse movements, no in-and out points, no tools to be selected, just great!!!

One can edit a daily TV show item in minutes (!) with this great feature,
please implement this and you will gain new Premiere users from the AVID editor community too!

And don’t forget to put that feature on the box and to spread the word then!

(oh yeah, and audio peak detection is a great FCP feature for all broadcast playouts
don’t forget to add this too…..)

Good Luck !


+1 for a classy response. Reading this months later, I have to say, you came across as a level head, when everybody else was frothing at the mouth.

I’m gonna check out CS and Premiere again after so many years, and see what I see this time around. Good luck, and good hunting.


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