Thursday, February 22, 2007

Premiere premiere preview

Adobe is bringing some sort of video editing tools to the web, which is good news for those of us who enjoy recreational video editing but have become frustrated with the near-total lack of free options available for PCs.

I've made most of my simple videos from my digital camera clips using Windows Movie Maker. WMM is great for very basic web-friendly compilations requiring nothing more than assembling clips together and throwing a song or two underneath. It does slow-motion and basic cheesy effects. Beyond that, it sucks. You can't un-marry an audio file from a video track. You can only have one additional sound layer underneath the main video and audio. You can't delete a clip and have a gap; it automatically bumps the next one back to fill in the space. You can Ken Burns (slow zoom) a still image but you can't specify where or really how much. And so on.

There are some editing programs available for a small cost, but with the free options available for Macs (and my campus access to them) there's no reason for me to pay. As long as I sacrifice myself to the mercy of a Fishbowl, iMovie is fantastic. For anything but advanced processes, it covers all its bases in regard to different types, amounts, and layers of audio, assembling multiple layers of video, with simple and intuitive controls over appearances, effects, transitions, and outputs.

Of course, there's something to be said for convenience, and the time and bandwidth consumed by uploading video clips may negate some of the advantages of Premiere Online. I may trade the advanced functionality of Premiere for the ease and speed of WMM if it's going to result in essentially the same product anyway. This depends on what features and functions are offered by Premiere and if the quality of the finished product will be worth the additional time investment. We shall see.

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