Premiere Pro CC 2020 is finally here. The biggest new feature is unarguably Auto Reframe. Is it really as good as advertised? What else do we get in version 14.0?
I’m editing in Premiere Pro from my first days in this industry and I’m always excited when my NLE gets more powerful. So obviously I’m excited whenever they release a new version.
Let’s take a look at what’s new in Premiere Pro CC 2020. In the following video, I take a quick overview of the features that excites me the most and I show screen recordings and samples.
If you want to read about all new updates, however, keep reading after watching the video. And if it’s the first time you came across my channel, please consider subscribing and hitting a bell icon so you don’t miss out on new content.
1. Auto Reframe
The Auto Reframe feature was first presented by Adobe in 2018 under the name Project Smooth Operator.
It’s supposed to automate the tedious task of reframing videos for different aspect ratios.
Editors of all kinds create different versions for Instagram Stories, Twitter, etc.
The effect uses Adobe Sensei machine learning to be able to identify objects that humans find interesting. Basically they took a lot of pictures and told the computer to analyze how human retina reacts to them and learn the patterns.
We apply Auto Reframe from the Effects panel. Luckily it’s GPU accelerated and it works really fast. You can also run it for a whole sequence by right-clicking and choosing a new option Auto Reframe Sequence.
It will duplicate that sequence, change its aspect ratio automatically and apply Auto Reframe to all of the clips in it. Any graphics are independently resized for each aspect ratio which is pretty impressive.
The analysis begins and as a result, position keyframes are being created in the intrinsic Motion parameter. Though you can continue working on the project during that analysis just like with Warp Stabilizer.
There are 3 presets we can choose from. Default one is appropriate in most cases but if you have a scene with fast-moving objects within a frame you should choose Faster Motion preset and for interviews and shots with very little movement you should choose Slower Motion. It generates very few keyframes compared to the other two methods.
Two things to note.
Remember that Auto Reframe is designed to be a finishing step. So run the effect when you’re done with editing given sequence.
And if you already have applied some motion adjustments, you should select the option to nest clips. It will remove transition effects but will keep your changes to the Motion parameter.
All in all, I think this is a great addition to the toolkit but don’t think it will do all of the work for you. Sometimes you will need to add or delete keyframes manually.
Still, it will save you a lot of time if reframing for other aspect ratios is something you find yourself doing pretty often.
2. System Compatibility Report 2.0
Adobe adds improvements for System Compatibility Report. This is a piece of great news! Stability is a big concern for a lot of users and this is yet another step to minimize compatibility issues.
On program launch, it will notify you about unsupported video drivers, Operating System requirements and so on. Moreover, it will send you to the website where you can download the most recent drivers or read more about the issue.
After installation, I got a message about unsupported video card drivers and once I fixed it, my System Compatibility Report is clean.
You can also export a Report which will be useful if you need to contact support or just ask someone for help.
Bulletproof Premiere Pro
BTW if you struggle with stability in Premiere Pro I have an eBook dedicated to best practices for the stable editing process to make your Premiere Pro Bulletproof. If that’s something you’re interested in you can order your copy on Gumroad.
3. Keyboard shortcuts for Temporal and Spatial Interpolation on keyframes
There are new shortcuts for Keyframe Temporal and Spatial Interpolation. They work both for single and multiple selections of keyframes.
Up to this point dealing with keyframes interpolation in Premiere was always a pain in the ass so I’m really happy that now we can apply it faster with shortcuts.
4. Keyboard shortcut to enable/disable Motion Direct Manipulation
We can also assign a shortcut to enable or disable Motion Direct Manipulation in the Program Monitor panel. So once you select the clip on the timeline you can just hit the shortcut you’ve assigned, and transform an object directly in the viewer.
Small thing but it’s actually something I wanted to have for years.
5. Time remapping maximum speed
For those of you creating time-lapses from video clips, the maximum speed for time remapping has been increased to 20,000 percent. Previously it was 1,000 percent and it was really limiting.
6. Delete media cache files from Preferences
Not long ago I made a video about Media Cache Management in Premiere Pro saying that you cannot delete cache files from preferences and that is no longer the case.
Instead of Remove Unused option that was there before, we now have the Delete button. Once we click it another dialog box appears and here we can choose to delete all Media Cache Files on the system at the currently chosen location.
But it will not delete cache files for a currently open project. If you want to delete all Media Cache Files, you need to quit Premiere Pro, relaunch it and open preferences while the Home Screen is open, before opening any Premiere Pro project.
That’s a good step because doing it manually involved some risk if you were not careful. So even though my not so old video is now a bit outdated, I’m happy about this little improvement 🙂
Besides, it will not delete Cache files created by older versions of Premiere so you can still learn a thing or two from this video so go ahead and watch it.
7. Dropdown Menu for MOGRTs
Dropdown Menu support has been added to Motion Graphics Templates. Previously creators were forced to use sliders for switching between some parameters in templates.
It uses sliders to switch between different variations and parameters of an animation we’re building and I’m pretty sure that they will now update these to use dropdown menu instead of sliders for some of the parameters.
It just offers a better user experience.
8. Multi-line edit field for MOGRTs
Essential Graphics Panel will now have a multi-line edit field for text in Motion Graphics Templates. The edit field will fit 3 lines of text and if you go over that amount, it has a vertical scrollbar.
That’s another improvement to Motion Graphics Templates that I wanted to see. It’s pretty cool that it works for old Templates as well.
9. Increase audio range to +15dB
The range for audio faders and for rubber bands has been increased to +15db. Previously the maximum was just +6db which for me very often was not enough.
The master fader also has increased range to a maximum of +15db instead of 0db in previous versions.
The rubber band for clips and tracks has been moved up a little bit. It should allow for better manipulation of volume across the entire range.
So don’t be surprised that the line is in a higher position and not in the middle like before.
Overall this is also long-awaited and much appreciated improvement.
10. New shortcuts for working with graphics layers
There’s a set of new shortcuts for working with graphic layers.
First, we have shortcuts for selecting layers. They will work when there is an existing graphic layer selected and the Program Monitor or Essential Graphics Panel is in focus. They will not work if you are in text editing mode.
Select previous Graphic Layer (Alt+Ctrl+[)
Select next Graphic Layer (Alt+Ctrl+])
Next, we have a shortcut for entering edit mode on a selected text layer. I always felt like we’re missing that one so I’m glad it’s here.
Begin Text Editing for a Graphics Layer (Alt+Ctrl+’)
To commit text entry you now press Ctrl + Enter.
And last but not least we can reorder layers in stack order with shortcuts that were previously only available for legacy titler.
Bring to Front (Shift+Ctrl+])
Bring Forward (Ctrl+])
Bring Backward (Ctrl+[)
Bring to Back (Shift+Ctrl+[)
These arrange commands are also available in the Graphics menu.
11. Encoding presets for Adobe Stock
If you render clips for Adobe Stock, you can use new encoding presets that will give you the best video quality possible.
That’s why the Render at Max Bit Depth checkbox is enabled for the ProRes presets. The H.264 presets are set to VBR, 2-pass because: - it gives a slightly higher quality output in some specific cases. - It disables hardware encoding which, while faster, results in lower quality output than software encoding.
It means that the performance will be slower with these presets in order to ensure the highest quality output possible.
12. Support export of MXF ProRes
You can export to Apple ProRes with the MXF OP1a container.
Currently, only the 422 flavors (422 Proxy, 422 LT, 422, and 422 HQ) are supported. "Enable Smart Rendering" can be used after selecting a checkbox.
13. Support underline in the Essential Graphics panel
Text layers in Pr now have another style button for Underline. You should be able to assign a keyboard shortcut for underline (here is no default shortcut assigned).
14. Multichannel audio workflow improvements
Audio effects will be now applied at their native channelization.
This means that for effects that needed strict audio channelization (like for example Loudness Radar effect) all channels can be analyzed and processed.
The user interface has been updated in the Effects Control panel. You will now see a text that shows what channels the current audio effect is processing.
Let’s say we have a 4 channel audio clip and we can see that channels 3 and 4 are listed in the text. It means that a stereo effect is processing channels 3 and 4 of that audio clip. A remap button allows you to change which channels are being routed through that effect.
15. Mac support for import of AVI Motion JPEG files
With 14.0 all types of MJPEG AVI files can be imported into Premiere Pro on Mac (it was possible on Windows already). Support is enabled for files with chroma subsampling 420, 422, 444 (audio codecs supported: PCM, AC-3, AAC, MP2, MP3).
16. New cameras support
Support import of the following footage clips: - Canon XF-HEVC, - from Canon EOS C500 Mark II camera, - from Panasonic Lumix DC-S1H camera, - from Sony Venice V4 camera.
17. Improved performance drawing thumbnails in the Media Browser
After thumbnails are generated in the Media Browser panel, they're now cached for faster redrawing after scrolling and returning to the previous view. The same holds true for switching views from thumbnail to list view or freeform view and back.
18. Rename graphic layers in the Essential Graphics panel
Shape and Clip Layers can now be renamed right inside the Essential Graphics Panel. It doesn’t work for Text Layers since their name is always whatever the text shows in the Program Monitor.
19. Switch to Metal renderer on Mac
The Metal GPU renderer is now recommended choice in Project Settings for Mac users (for whom Open CL and CUDA are being deprecated).
When you open an older project in 14.0, Metal will be selected by default but you can still switch back to CUDA or OpenCL if that’s what you prefer.
20. PIE integration to replace PSL
PSD import is now supported by Photoshop Image Engineering (PIE). This step has been made to support PSD import not only Mac and Win but also iOS and Android.
21. HDR10 export with correct metadata for MP4 (H264, HEVC)
You can export HDR content with proper HDR10 metadata for HEVC and H264 export. You just need to check "include below HDR10 metadata" under the encoding settings. When you enable this option, you’ll be able to add HDR10 metadata information.
22. Import QuickTime Animation files with Delta frames
Premiere Pro 14.0 adds support for the QuickTime Animation delta frame. So now you can import iFrame and delta frame QuickTime Animation files.
What’s my take on the new release? I expected more. Auto Reframe is actually the only new feature and everyone was expecting it already. The rest of the updates are just improvements to existing features. Don't get me wrong, I’m very happy about most of these improvements but seeing Resolve with features like sync bin I wish Adobe would gamble on something as well.
Afterword - How to Update Your Software
Updating to the new Premiere Pro version should always be done with caution. Although the new version has a number of fixed bugs, there’s always a risk involved in updating. Especially if you’re doing it in mid-project. Watch the following video where I talk about things you should consider before making that move.
And let me know what you think about the new release. Did you expect more from Premiere Pro 14.0?