By David Singer
Thanks to improved integration with other Adobe applications, I quickly and easily moved between Premiere Pro and Photoshop CS, where I was able to edit and color-correct images in the accurate resolution and aspect ratio.
Although Mac users won't benefit from this upgrade, PC-based video editors will be thrilled with Adobe's latest release, Premiere Pro 1.5. Premiere Pro's many new features include support for all standard HD resolutions (480p, 720p, and 1080i), Panasonic 24p Advanced, Bezier keyframes, and AAF and EDL im-port and export. These traits, as well as tighter integration with other Adobe programs and its continued ease of use, make Version 1.5 worthy of a closer look.
Taking a hint from Adobe Photoshop, Premiere Pro 1.5 includes four filters— Auto Levels, Auto Color, Auto Contrast, and Shadows and Highlights—to help speed work flow. Auto Levels, Auto Color, and Auto Contrast enable editors to make color and contrast adjustments with the click of a button, whereas the Shadows and Highlights filter intelligently corrects overexposed or underexposed video to maintain a proper exposure. Yet, as with any such correction, you won't be able to restore detail that isn't in the original file.
In Version 1.5, you can make custom presets and recall them in future projects. Once you have set the parameters for your effect, you can save them as presets under the Effect Controls menu and organize them in new Favorites folders or bins.
Adobe also has expanded the audio capabilities of Premiere Pro. With a new Snap on Sample feature, you can much more precisely edit audio in Premiere Pro 1.5. Using Snap on Sample, you can edit audio at the sample level within a frame of video, and then automatically snap audio edits to the same level. Also included in the upgrade are two new audio filters, DeHummer and DeEsser. These new plug-ins remove unwanted hum and hiss, such as that introduced by low-quality cables, to deliver truly professional results.
Adobe Premiere Pro 1.5 boasts tighter integration with other Adobe products than ever before. You can launch Photo-shop CS (available separately or included in the Professional Version of the Adobe Video Collection) from within Premiere Pro 1.5 by simply selecting File, New, Photoshop File. After Photoshop automatically launches, your image will open in the correct resolution and aspect ratio. When you're finished editing in Photo-shop CS, simply close the program and the edited version of your image will appear in your Premiere Pro project. And for users of Adobe After Effects, Premiere Pro 1.5 will automatically examine the After Effects plug-in folder. All compatible plug-ins therein automatically become available directly within Premiere Pro.
Noticeably absent from Premiere Pro 1.5, as well as the rest of the Adobe products, are work flow enhancements related to networking. Although Premiere Pro is a solid NLE, I would like to see such features as network rendering added to the application, as well as to After Effects and Photoshop CS.
As with Photoshop CS, the latest version of Adobe Premiere Pro requires activation, a process that proved quick and painless. Without activation, Premiere Pro 1.5 will cease to function after a 30-day grace period. Adobe's user license, and activation scheme, allow for two activations—one each on a primary and secondary computer—as long as the installations are not used concurrently.
Despite the fact that the NLE market is crowded and competitive, Adobe continues to expand on its already powerful Premiere Pro offering. Version 1.5 is a top-level NLE worth serious consideration by any video editor. I tested the upgrade on three workstations: one a 2.26ghz Pentium 4 system with 768mb of RDRAM, another a 2.8ghz Pentium 4 computer with 512mb of DDR memory, and a 2.0ghz Pentium 4 laptop having 512mb of DDR memory. Premiere Pro 1.5 ran admirably on all of them.
Premiere Pro 1.5 is powerful, flexible, and highly stable. I highly recommend it to new and seasoned users alike.
David Singer (singercreativeservices@ charter.net) is a founding partner of Singer Creative Services offering digital photographic, video, and other services.
Adobe Systems www.adobe.com
Computer Graphics World September, 2004
Price: $699 for the full version, $99 as an upgrade
Minimum System Requirements: Intel Pentium III 800mhz processor, Microsoft Windows XP, 256mb of RAM, 800mb of hard-disk space, a Microsoft DirectX-compatible sound card, a CD-ROM drive, CD recorder (CD-R/RW), DVD recorder (DVD-R/RW+R/RW), 1280x1024 32-bit color video display adapter, OHCI-compatible IEEE 1394 interface, and a dedicated 7200 RPM UDMA 66 IDE or SCSI hard disk