… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #684: System Compatibility Report

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Having performance problems? Check the System Compatibility Report.

The System Compatibility Report in Premiere Pro.

Topic $TipTopic

Have you ever wondered if your hardware is fighting Premier Pro? The System Compatibility Report holds the answers.

To display the report, choose Help > System Compatibility Report. This displays any hardware compatibility issues between your system and Adobe’s software.


Please rate the helpfulness of this tip.

Click on a star to rate it!

… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #685: Troubleshoot Premiere Pro Issues

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Here are ideas you can try to keep your system running smoothly.

Topic $TipTopic

This tip originally appeared as an Adobe Support article. This is an excerpt.

Having problems with Premiere Pro? The trouble-shooting guide linked above has tips on the following issues:

  • Why is my rendering slow?
  • Why doesn’t my timeline show any video preview?
  • Why am I getting choppy playback and poor performance?
  • What can I do to optimize the playback performance?
  • Checking for issues with applied effects
  • Checking for issues with plug-ins
  • What can I do if I think my hardware setup is not optimal?
  • Why does my audio playback keep getting stuck?
  • How do I get better performance with h.264/h.265 media?

EXTRA CREDIT

Here are more tips on how to optimize your system for video editing with Premiere Pro and After Effects.


… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #686: Optimize Your Premiere Pro System

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

The four keys are: memory, storage, graphics and CPU.

Topic $TipTopic

This tip originally appeared as an Adobe Support article. This is an excerpt.

The four key variables for a great video production system are memory, storage, graphics, and your processor. Here are tips from Adobe on how to optimize your system.

  • Memory. Professional video workflows rely on system memory. A good video editing workstation should have at least 32GB of memory— and as much as 128GB.
  • Storage/hard drives. Fast storage is critical for video production. Use solid-state NVMe or SSD storage. Unless you have a fast RAID array, spinning disks generally do not offer sufficient speed for HD and 4K video production.
  • Graphics. The GPU is used for onscreen rendering and export, priority areas for video production. Premiere Pro is engineered to take advantage of the GPU. After Effects is also GPU-optimized. Graphics card with at least 4GB of memory (VRAM). (Optional) Multiple GPUs, including eGPUs, can be used to speed up rendering and export.
  • Processor/GPU. For CPUs, clock speed matters more for After Effects. Multiple cores have more impact for Premiere Pro. The sweet spot for running both applications is a fast CPU with 8 cores. Core i7 or Core i9 Intel processors or AMD equivalents are strongly recommended. Fast clock speed at least 3.2 GHz, or higher.

EXTRA CREDIT

Thinking of upgrades? Here’s where Adobe suggests you spend your money, in priority, for Premiere Pro:

  1. More RAM — up to 128GB if your motherboard supports it.
  2. A faster GPU (or additional GPUs) for faster rendering and export
  3. Faster (or more) NVMe or SSD drives
  4. Faster CPU

… for Apple Motion

Tip #661: Lock Text Height, But Not Width, in Apple Motion

Don Smith – www.donsmith.me

The secret is an almost-invisible dummy layer.

Note each line has a locked dummy field, containing the letter “g”.

Topic $TipTopic

Don Smith writes:

I create templates in Motion for use in Final Cut Pro X. I needed a way to lock the height of a text box vertically to accommodate a descender character, but not horizontally.

I duplicated the line, left its position unchanged, and, in the lower layer, I put a ‘g’ in it and turned its opacity to zero. However, at zero opacity, the character disappeared and the vertical size of the text box collapsed.

Instead, I found, an opacity setting of .01 made the character stay, but it remained invisible which allowed me to lock the height of the dummy text box.

I then locked the dummy layer.

Because the user could only use the visible duplicate, now it doesn’t matter if the visible text box in the same position as the dummy gets a character with a descender or not. The visible line, being in the same position as the dummy that’s locked vertically, keeps the height of the enclosing folder locked and objects linked to that text, or its enclosing folder, can depend on the height of the text box to remain stable no matter what the user types into it.


… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #666: Productions Overview

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Productions can help both single editors and teams.

The Productions folder, showing all available projects.

Topic $TipTopic

Productions are a new way for editors to organize and collaborate on projects. Here’s a quick overview of this new feature:

  • You can edit in Premiere as always without ever using Productions.
  • Productions can be used by a single editor using local or shared storage, or a team, using shared storage.
  • Productions don’t require Internet access.
  • Productions are available to any Premiere editor who has updated to the latest version (April, 2020).
  • Productions easily support breaking large projects into manageable chunks.
  • Only project files can be stored in a production folder.
  • There is no limit to the number of projects stored in a production folder.
  • Only one production folder can be open in Premiere at a time, however, there is no limit to the number of production folders that can be created.
  • Different editors can work in different productions at the same time.
  • Any project can be opened Read-only, however only one editor can have read-write access to a project at a time.

EXTRA CREDIT

I created a recent webinar that shows how to use Productions in detail. You can find it here: here.


… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #667: Productions: What the Icons Mean

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

The icons tell the story of file status and ownership in the Productions folder.

A typical Productions folder, showing file status and current owner.

Topic $TipTopic

Productions are a new way for editors to organize and collaborate on projects. This is a summary of what the icons and colors mean in the Productions panel in Adobe Premiere.

  • Hollow rectangle. The project file is not open on any system.
  • Solid rectangle. The project file is open on at least one editor’s system.
  • Name. The owner of the file, or, if the file is open, the name of the editor with read-write access.
  • Red lock. The file is currently locked as read-only. However, if no one is using the file, it takes only a single mouse click, after opening the file, for an editor to switch the project to read-write.
  • Green pencil. The file is open on your system and you have read-write access.

Productions allows multiple projects to be opened on multiple systems at the same time, though only one editor has read-write access to a project at a time.


… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #668: Productions: Toggle Read-Write

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Switching between read-only and read-write is a single mouse click.

Green indicates you have read-write permission. Red indicates read-only.

Topic $TipTopic

Switching a project between read-write and read-only (and back) is a single mouse click. Here’s what you need to know.

First, if someone else has the file open read-write, you can’t take over the file, you can only have read-only access until the other editor releases it to the group.

Open the file from the Production panel. If someone else has the file open or if you are the only person who has the file open but were not the creator, it will open as read only.

To switch a file between read-write (green pencil) and read-only (red lock) simply click the pencil or lock icon in the extreme lower-left corner of the Premiere interface.

EXTRA CREDIT

A good reason to switch a file to read-only is to allow another editor to add graphics or titles to an ongoing project.


… for Apple Final Cut Pro X

Tip #641: The Secret is Blend Modes

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

The secret is blend modes and a compound clip.

Text, filed with a video, placed over a second video, with a drop shadow applied.

Topic $TipTopic

Here’s a straight-forward technique to put video inside a text clip, then key the results over a second video clip. And, for extra credit, I’ll show you how to add a drop shadow.

This is a three-layer effect using blend modes and a compound clip.

SETUP

  • On the Primary Storyline, put the background. The blue clip, in my screen shot.
  • On the layer above that, put the video you want to place inside the text. The glowing orange in my example.
  • On the layer above that, on the top layer, put the text.
  • Select the Primary Storyline clip and type V to make it invisible.

FILL THE TEXT

  • Select the text clip.
  • Go to the Video Inspector and set the blend mode for the text clip to Stencil Alpha.

The text is now filled with the image on Layer 2

PUT IT OVER THE BACKGROUND

  • Select the background clip and type V to make it visible again.
  • Select the text clip and the video on layer 2.
  • Go to New > Compound Clip.
  • Accept the default name and click OK.

The filled text now appears over the background on the Primary Storyline.

Done!

EXTRA CREDIT

  • Select the compound clip.
  • Go to Effects > Stylize and apply a drop shadow to the compound clip.
  • Adjust until it looks good to you.

… for Apple Final Cut Pro X

Tip #662: Sustaining a Musical Chord

Brian Thomas

The Retiming bar showing an audio clip slowed 75%.

Topic $TipTopic

Brian Thomas writes:

At the end of a recent video I wanted the music to fade out slowly but the piece I had chosen came to a fairly abrupt end. I tried cutting out various short lengths of that final chord and repeating it a number of times with ever decreasing volume while applying various audio effects but there was always some sort of reverberating echo effect in there – not cool.

Suddenly I had a brain wave: Use the Retime facility on the last chord and stretch it out to the desired length!

Usually we think of retiming (speeding up or slowing down of footage) as applying to the image part of the video but it can be very useful to manipulate independent soundtracks since whatever you do FCP X will do its best to retain the original pitch.

In my case I cut the soundtrack a few frames after the last chord had started, clicked on the remaining part of the chord, pressed Cmd + R to invoke Retiming and then clicked on the small vertical line at the right of the green area of the clip dragging it out to the new desired length of time.

NOTE: Clicking on the downward arrow in the middle of the clip, followed by “Slow” offers some convenient values of 50% or 25% straight off.

Dragging the chord out to 20% still gave me great results.

EXTRA CREDIT

  • Bonus 1: If you notice a slight absence of the upper frequencies then you may need to apply the audio EQ effect and boost appropriately.
  • Bonus 2: Apply this technique to make a whole piece of music exactly fit your footage – it will still sound right as the pitch doesn’t get altered. Neat, huh!

… for Apple Motion

Tip #653: Adjust Keyframe Landing Speed

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Ease In/Out Behavior can be changed in the Keyframe Editor

Control click any keyframe in the Keyframe timeline to display timing options.

Topic $TipTopic

Normally, keyframes move at a linear rate. However, this can be altered. Here’s what you need to know.

To adjust the speed with which animation approaches or leaves a keyframe:

  • Display the Keyframe Editor (Window > Keyframe Editor)
  • Control-click any keyframe and choose:
  • Ease In to slow animation as it approaches a keyframe.
  • Ease Out to accelerate from a keyframe
  • Ease Both to slow as animation approaches a keyframe and accelerate animation as it leaves it.

For additional control, experiment with the options in the Interpolation menu.

NOTE: Keyframes must be applied before they can be modified.