Adobe Premier Elements 14 vs iMovie 10.1

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by JDDavis, Nov 16, 2015.

  1. JDDavis macrumors 65816


    Jan 16, 2009
    Looking for any opinions on Adobe Premier Elements vs iMovie.

    My video editing consists mainly of home movies (sports, birthdays, kids, etc...). Most were shot on a Canon HD Camcorder but I've recently switched to shooting video on my Nikon D750. I don't need extensive video editing capability but I also do not appreciate overly simplified software (dumbed down). I do actually edit and like to have choices.

    I've used iMovie since it came out and have been generally satisfied with it. When iMovie 9 came out I upgraded and I believe it may have been the worst software experience I've ever had with Apple. I went back to 8 and have been using it since. I need to move on though. I've narrowed my choices to iMovie 10 and Premier Elements. Both should meet my editing needs.

    Premiere Elements feels a little old school but has a lot of tools and options. At first I didn't really understand how to use the Elements Organizer but it's basically a build your own DAM and the Organizer can access it. It's on sale for $59 so that's good. In general I haven't been a fan of Adobe interfaces or menus but I kind of trust them more than Apple at the moment as far as supporting the software.

    iMovie 10 has a very up to date interface and is of course tightly integrated with OSX (Apple TV and IOS as well). I think they have fixed most of the things I hated about iMovie 9. Since the organization is now pretty much like the Aperture Library system I now understand it. It has all the bells and whistles I need and now all the export options are good. Bottom line...since iMovie 9 and the death of Aperture I'm not sure I trust Apple to continue supporting quality photo/video software. iMovie 10 will be $14.99 for me.

    I can't decide at this point. It's hard to tear yourself out of the Apple ecosystem after all this time and lose that integration. I do feel that Adobe has more skin in the game in regards to supporting the software though. Any thoughts?
  2. kohlson macrumors 68000

    Apr 23, 2010
    I think the cost you're trying to evaluate is the time you'd have to invest in one or the other. iMovie is essentially free. Apple's model so far, with some hiccups, has been by it once and we'll upgrade it for a long time. This applies to FCP, too. Adobe puts out point releases, so new improvements will cost the price of an upgrade. If/when you outgrow either one, Adobe is a subscription model, and Apple a one-time fee. This greatly oversimplifies it, but I believe from a dollar perspective, Apple is a pretty good buy. But really, no matter which path you take, there is an upgrade available to grow with you. Both product lines are pretty good.
  3. campyguy macrumors 68040

    Mar 21, 2014
    I'm just getting into DV a bit, and will likely lurk in this forum. A couple of weeks ago I asked a friend of mine with plenty of DV experience a similar question about which product to choose - she said "neither". iMovie's a bit too simple, and Premier had lots of options - and money wasn't an issue.

    For the past couple of weeks I've been playing around and learning how to use Blackmagic Design's free DaVinci Resolve v. 12.1 - and, the DL includes an 1100(!) page PDF file that pretty much provides so much information. That's "so" much, and not "too" much information. Resolve - this free version - is pretty easy to get my head around, and the instructions are really easy to follow. The price is right, so what's to lose, besides a few hours of your time?
  4. dvoros macrumors 6502

    Sep 1, 2010
    The problem your going to have is that iMovie will NOT allow you to burn to a dvd to play in a standard dvd player. You need a third party application since Apple no longer supports or has updated, iDVD. Good luck.
  5. JDDavis thread starter macrumors 65816


    Jan 16, 2009
    Thanks for the info, I will check it out. Two other facts about me are I stay with software for a long time and abhor changing UIs or systems. I'm in it for the long haul. I also have 9 years of content in iMovie today and if I switch to another system I'll convert it all. Perhaps it's OCD but I have to have it all managed in the same place. Once I make a switch I'm in it until I can't be anymore.

    Good info but I'm in the clear on that one. I don't own a single DVD or a DVD player any more. Everything is through iTunes or online with Zenfolio.
  6. JDDavis thread starter macrumors 65816


    Jan 16, 2009

    I agree, iMovie is the less expensive alternative in the long run and it meets all my requirements. I'm a bit scared of it. iMovie 9 was a big turnoff and Apple's move from Aperture to Photos makes me question how interested they are in supporting the prosumer or the enthusiast (over the iphone user).

    If I am understanding it correctly iMovie 10 with it's library system wants you all in on the Apple way of managing your content (which is very Apple-like). Once you convert you are in. If it's like the Aperture Library there is still a way to retrieve your original files. Premier Elements doesn't really seem to care how you store and organize your content which is much more flexible but more work since it's all on you to stay organized.

    Thanks for the feedback and letting me type out loud. Still not sure. I wish I trusted iMovie more then I wouldn't be tempted to stray away from it. (that's the easy answer).
  7. joema2 macrumors 68000


    Sep 3, 2013
    You can easily export your iMovie projects to FCP X, should you ever want to. iMovie was originally designed as a front end for FCP 7, so there is good integration.

    While you can purchase Premiere Elements, you cannot purchase Premiere Pro -- it is rental only, at about $50 per month for the suite. If you are thinking long term about upgrading, consider that FCP X is $299 -- a one-time purchase with free upgrades.

    At least with Aperture, iMovie, Premiere Elements and FCP X you can always access and modify your projects. With Premiere Pro CC, if you ever stop paying the monthly fee, you lose access to your projects and can no longer edit them.
  8. kohlson macrumors 68000

    Apr 23, 2010
    I am not sure I understand this, and it's probably just me. But iMovie imports your original videos into formats that improve the editing experience. The originals are left untouched. At any point you can pack up your (original) marbles and go home. FCP provides import options for proxy and optimized media, as well as the option to either import the originals into the library. Lots of options, and the only thing that really cares is you (editing performance) and your disk drive(s). Will Apple/Adobe/Whoever change their apps some day? Sure thing. The technology/workflows/accessories are always getting better (start with 4K). And then some bright young team of engineers will convince management that they have a better way.
  9. Dave Braine macrumors 68040

    Dave Braine

    Mar 19, 2008
    Warrington, UK
    If that's all you want to do, then anything other than iMovie is overkill. In my opinion.
  10. JDDavis thread starter macrumors 65816


    Jan 16, 2009
    What I meant by trust is I felt Apple made some really, really bad choices with iMovie 9 and their decision to walk away from Aperture didn't sit well with me either. I wonder how much heart they really have left for enthusiast level video and photo editing. I jumped ship on the photo side to Capture 1 Pro and am very glad I did. (my photo editing demands are much greater than my video requirements).

    Agree. I was looking at Premier Elements as a alternative / slight upgrade to iMovie.

    So...if anyone cares...I discovered I actually still I had a purchase of iMovie 9 on record in Apple's App store so I was able to download iMovie 10.1 for free. I've used it for 2 edits so far and most of the frustrations I had with iMovie 9 have been fixed. I'm not sold on the UI but it works. I wish there were a little more control on the export options but it's of course much better than what I had in 08. It has crashed on my twice (which was a complaint) but it's been stable enough and it seems to handle my D750 video just fine. Since it's free I'll probably stick with it and see how it goes. As you stated above kohlson the originals are always recoverable.

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9 November 16, 2015