As much as I hate to say it, I’ve been doing video and audio recording and editing longer than I care to admit (suffice it to say that the origins go back to well before the Mac hit the streets). Naturally, my Mac is loaded with video production tools, audio recorder and editor apps, and more plugins than KFC has chicken feathers out back).
The latest video production app to be updated is Adobe’s Premiere Elements 11 (think of it as the Photoshop Elements of editing movies).
Premiere Elements is not iMovie. It uses a more traditional editing timeline, and tends to feature tools you won’t find in iMovie. If Apple’s free app confines your video productions, Premiere Elements may be a good choice (less expensive than Previere or Final Cut Pro X).
For a company which sells tools to creative professionals, Adobe’s products seem decidedly left brain oriented. Premiere Elements is representative of that focus.
Layout tools are organized on a left sidebar, similar to other Adobe products. The Photoshop heritage is notable in Premiere Elements which can enhance video clips with colors, textures, effects, and other enhancements.
The built-in Organizer makes it simpler to manage videos and clips. There’s built-in options for slow-motion and fast0motion effects. The learning curve is acceptable, too, starting with the Quick setting which limits options, and the Expert mode which expands options.
My favorite new function in Premiere Elements is FilmLooks which applies a cinematic style to movies.
Apple’s iMovie is decent for average Mac users because it’s easy to edit video clips (actually easier than the standard video and audio timelines of yesteryear). Premiere Elements brings features not found in iMovie, as well as a more standard approach to editing (drag and drop clips onto a timeline).
It’s easier to drop in sound clips and adjust or enhance sound in Premiere Elements than in iMovie. Effects and transitions are numerous, and shaky video can be smoothed and enhanced with a click.
Finished videos can be exported in variety of formats and shared online. For Mac users familiar with iMove of old, Premiere Elements will look and work in a familiar manner, though Adobe tends to bury more advanced functionality that less experienced users may need to dig around to find.
If you can’t afford Final Cut Pro X and iMove just isn’t enough, the next step up is Premiere Elements.