Tactical Advice

Review: Adobe Premiere Elements 10

Businesses can create their own Hollywood movie magic with the latest version of Adobe’s user-friendly video editing software.
Review: Adobe Premiere Elements 10

Adobe Premiere Elements 10, essentially a scaled-down version of Adobe Premiere Pro, gives users video editing functionality without the learning curve of its professional-level big brother.

The easy-to-use software’s familiar interface organizes tasks into four tabs: Project, Edit, Disc Menus and Share. Like its predecessor, Premiere Elements 10 is available for Windows and Mac operating systems, but it’s the first to support 64-bit Windows 7 users. Version 10, which can be ­purchased separately or ­bundled with Adobe Photoshop Elements 10, also adds a feature that allows users to turn photos into movies. Both enhancements strengthen an already solid solution for novice video editors.

End-User Advantages

The slide show is a staple in classrooms across the country. But its static images lack the dramatic effect that motion can bring.

Premiere Elements’ new Pan and Zoom tool enlivens slide shows by giving them the look and feel of video. With it, users can control motion, experiment with image sequencing, and even focus on specific people or objects for a longer period of time.

With the new Three-Way Color Corrector feature, editors can adjust colors throughout their production or adjust specific areas such as highlights, shadows and midtones. In testing, I found the controls to be highly responsive, making even fine adjustments remarkably simple.

Video editors often have trouble maintaining skin tones. In fact, one of my test clips didn’t white-balance properly, casting a yellowish hue on everything. But I was able to save the clip using AutoTone & Vibrance, a new tool that automatically boosts tone and vibrance without sacrificing natural skin tones.

As it turns out, with Premiere Elements 10, you really can fix it in postproduction.

Why It Works for IT

Although some programs overly complicate the setup process, Premiere Elements keeps things simple. When I began importing my video clips, it recognized that they didn’t match the default settings I had selected for the project. Instead of displaying an error message, it simply asked if I wanted to adjust my settings — a godsend for users of all skill levels.

The software also makes it ­possible to record high-definition movies to standard DVDs using standard DVD burners. Instead of equipping the entire organization with Blu-ray players, IT managers now can give users the power to view HD movies on standard DVDs at a fraction of the cost.

Businesses also can save money by taking advantage of the new “Upload to video sharing websites” feature. Sharing projects on social media sites is far more efficient and economical than storing and distributing that same content on DVDs.

Disadvantages

Premiere Elements 10 allows users to apply an effect to a clip by clicking and dragging the desired effect onto the clip. But I would like to see the company incorporate a translucent image of the effect being dragged, to confirm that the computer is ­indeed following the command.

The software also ships with Adobe’s Elements Organizer asset management utility, which must be launched from within Premiere Elements. I would prefer to have ­access to my assets without having to launch a second application.

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About the Author

Buzz Garwood

Buzz Garwood, the technology teacher at Home Gardens Academy in Corona, Calif., blogs and produces videos for EdTech magazine. Follow him at @buzzgarwood and check out his blog.

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