Polish Your Videos Like a Pro Latest packages from Adobe and Sony offer long feature lists and steep learning curves. by Richard Baguley From the August 2004 issue of PC World magazine Vegas 5 & Premiere Pro High-powered video editing tools once restricted to well-funded filmmakers are now available to anybody with an adequate PC and some cash to spend. The latest versions of two such programs--Adobe's Premiere Pro 1.5 and Sony's Vegas 5, both $699--offer a slew of new features designed to streamline the editing process. But don't be fooled: These apps are not intended for beginners creating a simple home movie. In addition to commanding hefty price tags, the extensive feature sets in Premiere and Vegas impose a cost in complexity. Both applications are powerful but remarkably intricate beasts that take some time--and patience--to learn. Of the shipping versions I tested, Premiere felt a little less cluttered than Vegas, but both programs put an awful lot of buttons on your screen at once. As you start to learn your way around the apps, however, each becomes easier to use. The two packages approach editing in the same way: You import video, identify the clips you want to use, add titles and effects, and then output the results to tape or DVD. Both also use a timeline to represent the video's sequence, and you can apply transitions or effects on the timeline. In each application you can customize the experience by altering the look and feel of the interface--hiding tools that you don't need and saving your preferred layouts. You can even switch quickly between layouts. This lets you, say, create one layout for editing audio and another one for editing video, and then switch between them as required. Read the article at pcworld.com
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