… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #032: What’s A Cache?

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

Cache files are work files that need some periodic attention.

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Just as when you are working on a math problem and you have a separate piece of paper to help with the intermediate steps, so also does Premiere. These are called “cache files,” or work files, because they are stored (cached) while you are working on your project.

These work files are generally not viewable by us, just as your personal notes may only make sense to you. But they are nonetheless essential.

While necessary, these don’t need to be retained after a project is done. In fact, it’s a good idea to clean all cache files on a regular basis; say, a couple of times a month or so. (If Premiere needs these files again in the future, it will rebuild them. So, there’s no risk of deleting something you actually need.)

Preferences > Media Cache

You can change the location of where cache files are stored. Where possible, I recommend storing them in a different location from your media files. Using your internal storage is often a good place, because these files benefit from the extra speed an internal device provides and you can erase the files when you are done.

Make a point to delete unused files every month or so, to regain storage space. Also, there is never a reason to archive cache files.

On my system, I also automatically delete cache files older than 90 days.

BONUS

I make a point to rename my cache file folder so I know what’s inside. This isn’t necessary, but I find it helpful; for example, “Premiere Cache Files.”


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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #060: Set vs Scale to Timeline

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

This setting has a major impact on imported still image scaling and quality.

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If all your still images precisely match the frame size of your project, all is good. But, when they don’t, this preference makes a big difference.

First, some background. All digital images are bitmapped. This means that, while you can make them smaller with no problem, you can’t scale them larger than 100%. If you do, the image gets increasingly blurry.

So, if you want to preserve image quality, it is critical for you to know when an image exceeds 100% size. The problem is that a default preference setting for Premiere makes this impossible.

Here’s the setting to watch in Preferences > Media: Default Media Scaling.

  • Set to Frame Size. This is the default setting. It automatically scales the imported image to fit in the frame AND sets Effect Controls > Motion > Scale to 100%, regardless of the original size of the image.
  • Scale to Frame Size. This automatically scales the imported image AND adjusts Motion > Scale to reflect the amount of the change.

The second option, which is not the default, allows you to see how much an image was resized and, if you scale it larger, it is easy to see when scaling exceeds 100%. This prevents you from unknowingly damaging image quality.


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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #064: Secrets of Premiere’s Dock Icon

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

Lurking, hidden, in the Dock are helpful options for Premiere.

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Hidden in the Dock icon for Premiere are several options that you may find useful. There are two ways to access them:

  • Control-click the Dock icon
  • Click and hold the Dock icon

Control-clicking is faster but you need to remember to press the Control key.

Either way, here you’ll find options to:

  • Open Premiere when you first log into your computer
  • Keep its icon in the Dock
  • Hide everything else EXCEPT for Premiere
  • Force quit the application if it starts misbehaving

Nice to know the Dock, too, has it’s secrets.


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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #043: Optimize Premiere Preferences for Performance

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

Five Settings That Can Speed Your System

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Most of the time, you alter Premiere’s preference settings to suit your, ah, preferences. However, there are five preferences that also affect performance.

Preferences > Media

  • Growing Files. A growing file is a special media file that can be edited while it is still being recorded; think sports highlights. When checked, every 60 seconds Premiere will check your hard disk for changes. If nothing is changing, all you are doing is slowing down your system. My recommendation is to uncheck this.

Preferences > Memoryy

  • RAM reserved for… Keep this low. On my system, I set this to 4 GB. The remaining RAM is reserved and shared between Adobe apps. Once you quit, this RAM is released back to the OS.
  • Optimize rendering for…. If you have 32 GB RAM or more, change this to Performance.

Preferences > Playback

  • Enable Mercury Transmit. Uncheck this UNLESS you are driving a video, not computer, monitor (say via HTML or 3rd-party interface box). Mercury Transmit is how Premiere outputs video to a video monitor. If all you are using are computer monitors, you can turn this off.

File > New Project Settings

  • Renderer. This determines how Premiere generates render files. On recent Macs set this to Metal; and, shortly, Metal 2. On Windows set this to OpenCL. This enables hardware acceleration for effects, rendering and export.

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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #021: A Fast Way to Export Part of a Sequence – or Clip

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

Need to export only part of something in Premiere? It’s easy.

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With a movie in the Timeline, select File > Export > Media.

When the Export window opens, look in the lower left. Change the menu at the bottom left to Custom (see screen shot). Then, drag the In and Out markers to isolate the section you want to export.

Once that’s done, choose Queue (to export in the background) or Export (to export immediately).

NOTE: You can only have one In and Out in the Timeline or export window.

PLAN B

Here’s a hidden way to export files from the Project panel.

Using Hover Scrub, mark an In and Out (shortcut: I and O) in the clip in the Project panel.

This time, and this is an important step, rather than use the File menu, right-click the clip itself and choose Export Media.

The Export window opens, but this time the clip is loaded into it. Note the menu at the bottom left now says “Clip In/Out” with the range for the clip already marked.

Then, choose Queue or Export as usual.


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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #044: Optimize Premiere Preferences for Cache Files

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

Cache files help Premiere work faster.

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The Media Cache preferences have a significant impact on overall system performance because this determines where all your media work files will be stored.

Media Cache files and databases are work and temporary files that Premiere uses during editing – for example, audio waveforms and thumbnails – and when sharing media between applications. For best results, these should be stored somewhere other than where media files are stored, though that is not required.

The default settings store these on the boot drive in the Library inside your Home directory, but you can re-point these to any folder on any drive – provided the storage is fast enough. Cache files need to be on fast drive.

  • Media Cache Files. These are the data files themselves. Click the Browse button to store these to a different location. However, changing the location does not move any files that are already stored in the original location.
  • Delete unused media cache files. It is a good idea to delete these if your drive starts to fill up, just regain storage space. This option only deletes cache file that are not being used. Media and project files are not affected.
  • Media Cache Management. This allows you to schedule to automatically delete older cache files. I tend to delete files based upon age, rather than size.

If, by accident, you delete cache files that are being used, or new cache files are needed, Premiere will re-create them automatically.


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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #046: Create a Custom Workspace

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

Premiere allow you to create a custom interface called a “workspace.”

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A workspace is a collection of panels optimized for a specific task; for example, editing. Premiere ships with eight pre-built workspaces:

  • Learning
  • Assembly
  • Editing
  • Color
  • Effects
  • Audio
  • Graphics
  • Libraries

Naturally, I didn’t like any of these, so I created my own, called: “Buzz Edit,” which you can see in the screenshot.

The easiest way to create a custom workspace is to drag panels around (see Tip #47) and resize things until you are happy.

Then, select Window > Workspaces > Save as New Workspace.

Give it a name and – Poof! – it instantly shows up in the Window > Workspaces menu (with it’s own keyboard shortcut) AND at the far right of the workspaces bar at the top of Premiere.


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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #035: How to Display the Dropped Frame Indicator

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

An essential warning when working with media.

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As Tip #37 explains, dropped frames are caused when either the CPU or your storage is not fast enough to play the video in your current sequence.

Most of the time, it’s a storage problem.

But, you can’t fix a problem if you don’t know it exists and, by default, the dropped frame indicator is hidden.

Here’s how to turn it on:

  • Switch to the Editing workspace.
  • Click the Wrench (Settings) icon in the Program Monitor.
  • Check Show Dropped Frame Indicator. (It’s about 2/3 the way down the menu.)

Now, you’ll see a small green or yellow dot in the lower left corner of the Program Monitor. When this dot is green, your system is able to play current media with no problems.

When this flashes yellow, however, your system is dropping frames. This creates either stuttery or stopped playback. Either fix the problem or shift to editing proxy files.

BONUS

The Dropped Frame indicator also exists in the Source Monitor and you turn it on the same way – except you use the Wrench icon in the Source Monitor.


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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #040: How to Delete Premiere Preference Files

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

Most of the time, Premiere preference files are fine. Until…

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Most of the time, Premiere’s preference files don’t break. But… every so often, things in the application start to go… awry.

When that happens:

  • Quit Premiere.
  • Then, restart the application pressing Shift + Option as it launches. (Windows: Shift + Alt). You can launch from either the Dock or Applications folder.

You know you did this correctly when the Welcome screen does not display any projects.

NOTE: Deleting preferences does not delete any media or projects. However, it WILL reset any customized settings like unsaved workspaces and custom preferences.


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… for Adobe Premiere Pro CC

Tip #083: Float a Panel in It’s Own Window

Larry Jordan – https://LarryJordan.com

“Floating a panel” means that it appears in it’s own window.

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Any panel can be “un-docked” and float in its own window above the standard Premiere interface. This is especially useful for information you want to keep a close eye on – such as the timecode display.

There are three ways to undock a panel:

  • Click the three horizontal bars (called the “thumb”) next to the name of an active (selected) panel and choose Undock Panel.
  • Drag the panel name outside the regular Premiere interface.
  • Select the panel from the Window menu; for example, Timecode.

In any of these three cases, the selected panel will appear in its own window, ready to be dragged wherever you need it.

EXTRA CREDIT

If you decide you don’t want the panel undocked and it came from an existing interface, choose Window > Workspaces > Reset to Saved Layout.

If the floating panel was called from the Window menu, simply close the window to put it away.


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