There has been a raging debate on what video editing tool trumps over the others. Needless to say, the faces of this debate are Final Cut Pr and Adobe Premier. I have used Final Cut Pro and Adobe premier in equal measure. How do the two compare?
Between Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premier, which one is the best? Final Cut Pro is better than Adobe Premier by tiny margins. Besides its attractive and more user-friendly interface, Final Cut Pro is faster. Moreover, it also runs on less processing power. This means that Final Cut Pro needs a computer with fewer system requirements. Though both Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premier are compelling, Final Cut Pro is cheaper than Adobe Premier in the long run. Besides that, Final Cut Pro also performs better in audio editing.
Choosing between Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premier goes down to the fine details. Each software its own peculiarities. Though both Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premier have their fair share of great features, it is important to look at their abilities from a professional’s perspective. How does either of them perform on the crucial editing procedures? Does one lag because it needs higher processing power? Which one of them comes at a greater cost? Which one has more features? Can we pinpoint which one has a higher quality of final cuts?
What makes Final Cut Pro better than Adobe Premier?
You definitely need a tool that gives the value for your money. You also want a tool that doesn’t dig a large hole in your pockets. On this, Final Cut Pro is cheaper than Adobe Premier on all fronts.
The Final Cut Pro package sells at a one-off price of $299. Adobe Premier, works on a subscription model. The monthly pay for Adobe Creative Cloud is $24..99. The alternative to the monthly subscription plan is paying $239.88 for a yearly subscription. This translates to $19.99 per month.
On the face of it, Adobe seems a little cheaper, doesn’t it? Well, you have not had enough of it yet. The stated subscriptions do not give you access to all the pro tools on the site. If you would like to get the access, you must dig deeper into your pockets. For the full pro-site tools, Adobe charges $598.88 on a yearly subscription. The alternative to this is paying $79.99 per month.
Final Cut Pro costs almost half of the total costs that Adobe Premier does. However, we have to state that it is only available on the Mac App Store. This lets you do auto updates of the software easily. The fact that it is only available for Macs sucks too, doesn’t it?
Ease of use
First, video editing tools can intimidate if you have zero knowledge of what the myriads of icons and mini-tools on the screen actually do. For newbies, grasping the ropes of video editing takes some time and a good amount of reading and coaching. Getting a tool that has easy-to-understand features, and an easy-to-use interface is crucial.
Just like with most of its software components, Apple sticks to a minimalistic design on the Final Cut Pro. The innovative Trackless Magnetic Timeline that forms the design foundation for most of Mac software is easy on the eye, and easier to use than the traditional Traditional Linear design that Adobe is made of. Besides being really easy on the eye, the UI design helps to keep everything in line during editing. With Final Cut Pro, the chances of wandering into unwanted design procedures, or getting the wrong results because you choose the wrong tool is minimal.
On Final Cut Pro, the editing options are placed in a seemingly logical flow. Finding your way from one editing step to the other feels natural. The whole editing process works like a storyline of sorts. You move seamlessly from one step to the other, without the fear of overwriting the edits that you did on the last step. Besides having a logical flow of steps, the Final Cut Pro interface has fewer tools on the face. At any point, your screen does not look cluttered or overloaded with tools and editing options.
How does Adobe’s UI look like?
While the designers at Adobe also did a great job on the Adobe Premiere, it is still worth a mention that Adobe is made for experienced photographers and filmmakers. To some extent, the many features on the screen will seem overwhelming to a newbie. This doesn’t imply that Adobe Premiere’s interface is pathetic. It is just a little more complicated than Final Cut Pro.
However, Adobe’s interface is more scalable than it’s contemporary. This informs why it is the tool of choice for experienced editors. While Final Cut Pro works on a principle where the video is edited synonymously with the Audio, Adobe edits the audio on a different interface.
Both interfaces come with Live-preview options. To some extent, the option on Final Cut Pro is easier to access and works better with the general interface. On Adobe Premier, the option interferes with the editing process. In fact, this forces most editors to do the editing and see the results later on Adobe. Comparing this to Final Cut’s ‘ see as you edit’ interface seems laughable at the least.
Final Cut Pro also has a record of being newbie-friendly. It is the video editing tool of choice for non-professionals. Aside from that it also comes with easy-to-use templates and great guides.
The real magic in Final Cut Pro appears its audio editing abilities. In fact, I will bet that Final Cut Pro is the best audio editing software.
On Adobe Premier, the audio editing features are restricted to an audio mixer that has only panning, clipping, volume, and muting as the only audio editing options. Adobe automatically creates new tracks when you drop a video for editing. To some extent, Adobe Premier depends on the power of third-party plug-ins, which you can easily download and add to the interface for audio editing.
Final Cut Pro, can fix almost anything on your audio files. You can edit hums, peaks, noise, compression and any other audio issues at the click of an icon. You can also choose to adjust all of them manually if you feel that you don’t want to remove all of them on your audio.
One impressive feature on Final Cut Pro that you will not find on adobe is the Match Audio. This feature aligns the audio in the video to the audio source. It works on audios and videos that recorded on different devices and meshes them into one. For instance, if you shoot your video on a DSLR camera and do the audio recording on a different device, the Match Audio feature will match the sound source to the video.
Aside from the fact that Final Cut Pro is only available for MacBook users, it still performs considerably better on what amount of processing power you need to run the heavy editing software.
The recommended processing power to run Final Cut Pro seamlessly 4GB of RAM running on XOS. However, 8GB of RAM power if often preferred. Adobe Premier, on the other hand, needs heavier running power to function well. While 16 GB of RAM, running on a 64-bit windows CPU is often recommended, the software will crash a PC with anything less than 8 GB of RAM.
More often, you have to build a custom PC to support Adobe Premiere’s heavy power needs. Most Pcs in the market simply don’t have the power to run it. While this might be cheaper than buying a Mac, it takes a lot of expertise and time.
However, it is worth stating here that Adobe can run on the Mac platform. Even on Macs, you need more running power than you would need with the Final Cut Pro on the same operating system.
Exporting, Importing and rendering videos
Final Cut Pro sets itself apart from all other video editing tools on this one. Even Adobe Premier, with its all its great features, doesn’t come close to its importing, exporting and rendering abilities.
On Final Cut Pro, you can preview your video snippets before you upload. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg if you consider the amount of work this cuts. With such a simple feature, you don’t have to upload bulk files on the gamble that the file you need is among the uploaded ones.
Exporting and rendering on Final Cut Pro is the ultimate selling point of the software. In fact, once you start the upload process, you see all of it in real time. There is no point of waiting for your computer to complete processing all the files before you can view them. Besides the fact that you can export and render videos in real time, FX Pro supports exporting High quality videos-even those in the 4K range- damaging none of the frames, edits or rendering.
Final Cut Pro also takes a considerably shorter time on rendering videos compared to Adobe Premier. While earlier versions of FX Pro could not outpace Adobe’s amazing speeds, the newer versions are turbo-charged by MacBook’s 64 bit CPU and higher GPU abilities. Moreover, rendering happens in the background when using Final Cut Pro. This means that you can work on other videos at the same time.
Both platforms heavily depend on upgrading via plugins. However, the range of plugins that can be integrated into Final Cut Pro is astonishing. In fact, for Final Cut Pro, almost every tool has an external plugin of its own.
While Adobe Premier has its fair share of great plugins, Final Cut Pro wins the plugin race because you can easily integrate it with the most important plugins, most of which are not available for Adobe.
For instance, you can get plugins to help you in creating special effects for 3D, another one to help in stabilizing your video, and one to improve the color quality of the video really easily on FX pro. Final Cut Pro also integrates with plugins like MotionVFX which is important for the editors with an interest in producing live video templates without having to export the video or image to a third-party tool.
Premium Plugins can be a little pricy. In fact, most of them cost between $100 to $400 on average.
Are there situations where you should choose Adobe Premier over Final Cut Pro?
Definitely yes. While Final Cut Pro is better than Adobe Premier on so many fronts, what Adobe Premier lacks on such fronts, it gives in the quality of some of its features.
On some occasions, Premier Pro actually overpowers Final Cut. However, the main concerns of Adobe rest on the final product rather than the ease of use, or the running power of the PCs.
In what situations does the Adobe Premier perform better than Final Cut Pro?
Using touchscreens for editing is extremely easy. In fact, it makes the job enjoyable. MacBook does not have a Touchscreen feature. It hurts that this is something Apple has not thought of integrating into their computers.
Adobe premier works seamlessly on Touchscreen enabled PCs. Using the touchscreen, you can scrub through the media, zoom in on snippets by simply pinching the screen, increase the size of the buttons and play and replay without having to fiddle with the mouse or the touchpad.
No editing software matches the vibrancy, and quality of colors on Adobe Premiere Pro. Even the newest versions of FX Pro cannot compete with that.
Premiere Pro comes with the whole set of Lumetri color tools. Formerly, this set of professional grade was housed in a separate software called Speedgrade. The amount of color manipulation that these tools enable is staggering. Other than the fact that it takes some time to get used to the color grading, the wide choice of HDR and film color options is an immense plus to any videographer.
The Lumetri scope view is a tool that should be an editor’s dear friend on Adobe Premiere. It shows the ranging usage of red, green and blue on the video. This tool literally helps you to make great choices on the concentration and vibrancy of the color on your footage.
In response to Adobe’s great color schemes, Apple improved the Final Cut Pro by adding a color wheel to its system. While the wheel produces impressive results on its own, it still does not hold a candle to the grading schemes that come with Adobe Premier. In fact, if you constantly do shoots that require color grading, you should dump the Mac for the PCs. The color schemes are the reason why Adobe Premier is the software of choice for massive movie studios.
Adobe Premier pro also trumps over Final Cut Pro on the range of output options available. For Macs, there is only a small range of port choices to transfer the video from one device to another one. To cut into this deficit of choices, you must install Apple Processor, an inherently slow companion application onto your computer. With Adobe, you can transfer the video with ease across multiple devices while keeping the same quality.