Pro video blog…Produced by Philip Johnston DoP/Editor

After using FCPX for a month I took time out to film a DVD for the Scottish Government about Type One Diabetes. I have a month before the big edit so I have been re-assesing my editing choices…FCPX v Premiere Pro CS6.

FCPX is more of a fix-it for me, adding various filters like “Callouts” and Green screen work. Green Screen is exceptional on FCPX and will be my 1st choice from now on. I don’t yet care for the “events” or bins I prefer a clean canvas to work with which is where Premiere Pro comes in.

Premiere Pro CS6 is very like my much loved FCP-7, you start with a clean canvas and add footage as you go along, having a Cuda enabled Mac makes Premiere very responsive and better still Adobe have given editors like me a head start with FCP keyboard shortcuts so I don’t have to waist time re-leaning Premieres shortcuts.

So armed with two editing systems I am now logging about 6 hours of footage on a 3TB hard drive naming my interviews and various clips ready for the big edit next month. I will edit mainly on Premiere then produce graphics on FCPX and Motion 5.

I still can’t get smooth motion via HDMI out of my Black Magic Intensity Pro card or my Matrox MX02 Max from FCPX running 720 50p yet the same footage plays just fine using Premiere so my conclusion is that FCPX is the culprit which is another reason not to use FCPX for a long hall edit.

Both platforms have their strengths so it makes sense to expand my workflow to incorporate both and why not, I will let you know how I get on next month. The Gekko video review will be edited on Premiere at the end of this week.

Matt Davis…”It has to be said… if you need to knock out a 2-7 minute video for the web from ‘over-shot’ rushes that are from, shall we say… dull subjects, FCPX is still the Absolutely Fabulous choice.

Trouble is, when you need Timecode (especially Time of Day), when you need to combine a LOT of rushes, when you need to deal with a LOT of versions, and when you need to manage archiving and backups of a Big Hairy Audacious Project, FCPX is just a complete and utter Jessie. Not in a cute ‘oopsie’ sense, but in a huge ‘disaster approaches’ sense.

There will be many of us who hate to love FCPX, and love to hate it too. Trouble is, it’s like Uncle Henry – who thinks he’s a chicken – we’d take him to the doctor but we need the eggs. FCPX is simply a brilliant short form editor. If you have piles of rushes for a 4 minute edit, Premiere will drown in its own lubrication. FCPX gets it done.

Don’t get me wrong – I hate it. I resent it. Every time I do a project that will involve short form and loads of rushes, it’s like hiring a really nasty, slick Mercenary: ‘Sure, I’ll solve your problems’ (I am going to spend ages cleaning up the mess) – ‘I don’t need management’ (I am going to manage the arse out of this job) ‘and you will have no stress’ (no, I won’t stress over the glitz, but you bet I’m gonna stress over archiving, version control and all the other professional shit you think you’re too cool to deal with – you get paid, I earn it.)”

Yes, sorry, editors do anthropomorphise their software now and again. It’s cheaper than therapy.


Having been working in the video business since 1988 I have amassed a great amount of knowledge of both the kit and production values over the last 30 years.

One thought on “Finally taken the decision to work with Premiere Pro CS6 and FCPX

  1. I made the complete leap to the Adobe stack about a year ago. I was a FCP7 user and loved it. Tried using FCPX but found it frustrating. While I appreciated the new ideas/philosophy it represented, I needed a good tool not a new philosophy. Like you mention, the palette of Premiere felt better than that of FCPX. And, with the integration to the other Adobe applications (AE, Au …) I’ve not looked back on that decision at all.

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