Adobe sees memory keepers—people who preserve precious family moments—as the target audience for its consumer-targeted video editing tools.
However, anyone who wants to create compelling videos without having to deal with a difficult development of new applications like Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro can benefit from Premiere Elements.
It is not only exceedingly simple to use, but it also allows you to go rather deep with multitrack and keyframe-based editing—or you can ignore all of that and use its more-automated functions.
However, the tool falls short of Editors’ Choice winner CyberLink PowerDirector in terms of effect variety, rendering speed, and format support.
What is the price of Premiere Elements?
Premiere Elements is available as a package with Photoshop Elements for $149.99 or as a standalone app for $99.99. There is no requirement for a membership for these one-time fees. It should be noted that Premiere Elements is not part of the Adobe Creative Cloud service. If you upgrade from a prior edition, the prices are reduced to $119.99 and $79.99, respectively. A free trial provides 30 days of full-featured application use, however any movies created with the trial are watermarked.
Can Premiere Elements be run on my system?
Before installing the program, make sure you have a fast Internet connection and a large hard drive, as it requires at least 6GB of disk space. You’ll also need a moderately capable machine with a multicore CPU that runs at least at 2GHz, at least 4GB of RAM, and at least 5GB of available hard drive space. On Windows, the app requires SSE2 functionality on the CPU as well as a DirectX 9 or 10 graphics card and a monitor with at least a 1,280-by-800 resolution. When you open the program for the first time, it asks if you wish to send diagnostic data to Adobe.
What’s New in Adobe Photoshop Elements?
The AI smarts from Adobe’s pro tools, Photoshop and Premiere Pro, are being brought to Elements users as a theme in this year’s Adobe Elements creativity software upgrade.
Reframe automatically. In 2019, this capability was added to Premiere Pro. The application analyzes your video clip to find the subject or what is significant, and then crops your media to fit an aspect ratio that was not initially shot in. It’s beneficial if you shot a video in widescreen but want to upload it as an Instagram square, for example.
Begin with Aspect Ratio. A new project beginning window allows you to select from a variety of popular social media formats. The format options include titles and backgrounds that are correctly sized for the project type.
Overlays with animation. Surround your main video subject with birds, butterflies, hearts, smilies, stars, smoke, and other elements.
Guided Editing for Shadows and Highlights Highlight and shadow adjustment, which has long been a staple of digital photo editing (especially when utilizing raw image formats), is just as crucial with video footage when it comes to getting the lighting right.
New Slideshow Layouts. These feature new modern overlay styles, such as the Geometric and Frames templates, which may be found in the Organizer module. Simply select any photographs or movies, and the Organizer will generate a presentation with backing music without even taking you to the main video editing interface.
Video output should be compressed. This new option allows you to reduce the file size of your exported video, displaying the precise size of the file—useful for destinations with file-size constraints.
The 2021 update introduced an outstanding mask selection tool with motion tracking, editing speedup with GPU acceleration, 21 new background music tracks, and two new Guided Edits: Double Exposure and Animated Mattes. In addition, the 2020 version added some useful features such as Video Noise Reduction, Auto-Tagging, and two Guided Edits: Time Lapse and Sky Replacement.
Auto Creations and a Home window for easy access to your projects and instructions are two more recent enhancements. Candid Moments, which selects the greatest still photographs from your video clips; Smart Trim, which removes dull video segments; Freeze Frame motion titles; and Animated GIF creation are among the new features.
- How To Lower Music Volume In Adobe Premiere[Detailed Guide]
- Adjustment Layers Premiere Pro (How To Use)
When you first load Premiere Elements, you’ll see the Home screen, which is a distinct window from which you may launch any of the three Elements apps—Photoshop Elements, Premiere Elements, or Organizer. The Home screen also displays help links, Auto Creations, feature usage suggestions, and recent projects. Better and sharper presentation of GIFs is new with the 2022 update—you can now play them inside the Organizer.
Importing, rating, keyword tagging, and sharing media online takes place in the standalone Organizer app. You may also export your work to DVDs and other project formats from here. Media, People, Places, and Events are among the modes available at the top of the Organizer. The final three provide useful methods for viewing your material. The Organizer is geared toward images—its Instant Fix button, as well as the Places view, only operate for photos. It has, however, been greatly simplified and improved over time.
When you tap the Search magnifying glass symbol in the top window border, the Organizer shows off its abilities. Along the left margin, a collection of buttons emerges, allowing you to filter your search by automatic AI-generated Smart Tags, People, Places, Dates, Keywords, Albums, Folders, Media Types, and Star Ratings. You can mix search types, such as looking up photos of Joe Smith shot in New York City in September. Automatic object and people tagging also work with video content. The program found and identified things in my films (including faces), however the People view didn’t offer any face tagging from my video clips, which were filled with grins.
One area where Premiere Elements lags behind competitors such as CyberLink PowerDirector and Wondershare Filmora is that it does not provide any stock media to its consumers. This is especially perplexing given Adobe’s own repository, Adobe Stock. It also appears to be highly desirable for amateurs and YouTubers. Another step I wish was simpler is to limit the gallery to a specific media type—video, photo, or audio. To access this setting, you must navigate through the menu, when other apps have simple buttons. They are present even in the smaller version of Organizer that lives within the editing interface.
Creations by Auto
After importing about a thousand videos and photographs, the home screen displayed more than a dozen Auto Creations generated from my stuff. It created pleasing collages from images shot around the same region and time, which benefited from some cropping and photo shifting. The feature also generated a number of video slideshows of different interests from my test media, complete with effective transitions and backgrounds. The background music was usually nicely picked to complement the image subjects, but it frequently ended suddenly rather than fading out. Some were likewise so brief as to be meaningless. In any event, the project can serve as a springboard for your own creativity.
Interface for Video Editing
The video editing interface in Premiere Elements stays virtually unchanged in the current edition, with the conventional timeline across the bottom and preview and content panels sharing the top half of the window. I appreciate how the content panel folds when you aren’t using it, allowing you to see more of the video window. The editing interface is divided into three modes: Quick, Guided, and Expert.
When you launch the editor, you will see four primary options in the middle: Add Media, Create a Template-Based Movie, Tell Your Story Using Titles, and Learn Video Editing. Alternatively, from the menus, select File > New > Project, where you will see a selection of aspect ratios for the movie. If you put the first clip in the timeline with a different aspect ratio, the project uses that, which doesn’t make much sense to me. Fortunately, a Force Selected Project Preset to This Project check box prevents this from happening. Another difficulty I have with Elements is that you can’t edit project properties once you’ve created them, not even during export.
Touch screens on PCs are becoming more ubiquitous (they’re standard on all Surface Pros and Surface Laptops), and they’re well supported in current Windows releases. I’m glad to see Adobe making an attempt to accommodate this input method, at least in the Organizer and Premiere Element’s Quick mode. However, the support may be improved. Although you can swipe across video and add and split clips, certain controls are still too small for pudgy-finger operation. There is no option for a touch-friendly interface, as there is in Photoshop and Lightroom.
The tool, like most consumer video editing software, creates a lower-resolution proxy version of your clips for faster editing performance. You can view the full-quality movie at any moment by pressing the Render button, although this may take several minutes depending on the length and resolution of the video. A line above the timeline indicates which clips have been rendered (green for done, yellow for not ready).
You may capture and import video and photographs from both the editor and the Organizer. The Add Material button in the Editor allows you to retrieve media from the Organizer (which opens a preview window), files and directories, or directly from cameras and devices. Elements supports 4K content, so owners of a GoPro Hero or any current flagship smartphone can take advantage of the highest quality available on their cameras. Even 5K footage from a current GoPro did not pose a difficulty in my tests.
On Windows, Premiere Elements now supports the H.265 High-Efficiency Video Codec (HEVC) format. This finally worked for me, however when I added an HEVC clip to an existing project with non-HEVC content, the results were inconsistent, sometimes presenting ghost images of the other clips and other times being weirdly framed. There were no such issues when I created a new project and added HEVC. It’s also worth noting that the application only allows you to import HEVC files, not export them.
The application does not currently support 3D or 360-degree VR clips. These could be considered niche usage cases, however, competitors like Magix Movie Edit Pro, Vegas Movie Studio, and PowerDirector (as well as Final Cut Pro on the Mac) have long supported these formats, and 360 video isn’t uncommon in social media posts.
Screen-cam recording, which allows you to create recordings of desktop activities on your computer screen and is available in Corel VideoStudio Pro and PowerDirector, is also missing in Premiere Elements. There’s also no Multicam editing, which allows you to sync the same scene filmed with different cameras from different viewpoints, as seen in PowerDirector and Magix Movie Edit Pro. Final Cut Pro, our Editors’ Choice for video editing on the Mac, provides superb Multicam editing.
The Project Assets panel conveniently collapses to display thumbnails of all your video, audio, and image assets. This is similar to how professional software uses bins to keep track of assets. There’s also a History window that shows you what your project looked like at any point throughout previous revisions. Searching within the transition and effect selection boxes is also an option, which I find useful.
One feature I miss on the Expert mode timeline is the option to swiftly solo a track, hiding all others; however, you can hide either a video or audio track by clicking on the film or speaker symbols at the top of the timeline. The ability to zoom in and out of the timeline with the mouse wheel, which most competitors provide, is also lacking. You can’t break panels into distinct windows like in Vegas Movie Studio, but you can use a dual-monitor arrangement. Another irritation is that Premiere Elements’ windows do not adhere to Windows standards, so you can’t, for example, slide a window to the side to fill half the screen or shake the title bar to minimize other programs.
Rapid Mode Edits Your Videos for You
Quick mode allows you to connect video clips, add titles, transitions, picture correction, soundtracks, and effects without having to navigate a maze of tracks and settings. It has one of the clearest views you’ll see anywhere, with an iMovie-like storyboard view of footage. You can move through your movie with a scrubber, and you can simply apply freeze-frames and rotation with buttons. Smart Trim and speed adjustments are easily accessible from each clip thumbnail. Another button allows you to add music and fade it in and out.
Auto Reframe is a major new feature for the 2022 release. This, as the name implies, alters the aspect ratio of a clip by cropping it. Adobe Sensei AI is used by the tool to determine what is essential in the frame and crops to show it. It worked extremely instantly in my testing, and unlike my attempts with similar tools in Premiere Pro and Apple Final Cut, it performed quite well in my tests, keeping a person centered, as shown in the sample below. In the little trimmer tool on the right, I’ve showed the clip in its original aspect ratio. If you don’t like the crop, you can change its offset, position, size, and rotation using the Applied FX tab on the right side of the interface.
Smart Trim in Premiere Element detects low-quality areas of your media and can eliminate them all at once. Style selections (People, Action, and Mix) influence which elements of the clips are maintained. It automatically chose Action for my bike-stunt test video, and trim suggestions showed without prompting. You can see a preview of the suggested trimmings. The app did a decent job of selecting the most busy areas, but one short section was boring, and some farther-away bike tricks were left out. It also eliminated out-of-focus and wobbly areas, which I loved. Handles allow you to effortlessly extend the options, and removing one is as simple as pressing the Delete key. Smart Trim is a useful tool if you have extended video of minimal interest.
This tool is accessible in Quick or Expert mode and is located in the Tools/Video group of the Toolbar. You must first choose a video clip or clips before you can use it. The tool looks for faces that are sharp and well-lit. It was really good at identifying pleasing stills from my video stroll around the office. You can use a slider to add more or fewer photographs, or you can simply click on a tool at the cursor to add one on the fly.
Stabilization of Video
By selecting Shake Stabilizer from the Adjust menu in either Quick or Expert mode, you can apply video stabilization. There are two types of stabilization available via buttons: Quick and Detailed. However, quick isn’t that quick. In Quick mode, my 1:35-minute clip took roughly 10 minutes to stabilize. At the very least, Premiere Elements displays your progress—the number of minutes remaining, the percentage of work completed, and the current frame.
Following that, a banner message appears, stating, “To avoid excessive cropping, set Framing to Stabilize Only or change other options.” In my testing, this entailed going into the Detailed tab and selecting Advanced, where I had a plethora of options including smoothness, crop percent, and edge feather. It’s a strong tool, but extended clips require patience. Even with Smoothness set to 100%, large bumps aren’t always fixed. One interesting option is Synthesize Edges, which prevents cropping.
Dehaze, a feature found in many picture editing programs, is included in Premiere Elements’ Effects panel’s Advanced Adjustment section. As you can see in the adjacent screenshot, it performed a good job of adding contrast and saturation to my test landscape footage.
Grainy Noise Should Be Reduced
Another example of adapting something from photo editing to video editing is the Reduce Noise tool. Surprisingly, the application has long offered a tool for creating noise as an effect, but not one for correcting it. Simply drag the Reduce Noise icon from the FX menu on the right to open the tool’s changes. There are just three noise reduction options available: Default, Medium, and High. It won’t turn a terrible clip into a wonderful one, but it will smooth out too grainy pictures.
When you remove graininess, you lose some crisp detail, as with typical noise reduction, but in video this is less of a concern than in photographs. The left side of the above screenshot has no correction, while the right side has Noise Reduction applied. As you can see, the tool performs admirably.
Smart Tone on Auto
Auto Smart Tone is a function shared by Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements. After modifying the image to its best-guess fix, this lighting correction displays a control puck in the center of a rectangle, with four extremes displayed as thumbnails in the four corners of the preview window, towards which you can move the puck to refine the app’s correction. The feature in Premiere Elements finds related scenes within a clip to repair at the same time. The tool enabled me to significantly improve the lighting in a test clip.
Premiere Elements Guided Edits
The Guided Edit tools in Premiere Elements guide you through the steps of producing effects that are more sophisticated than simply hitting a button or tweaking a slider. To see them all, simply hit the Guided Edits mode-switcher button. When you edit something, a right panel with actions you need to take appears as tooltips that inform you exactly what to do and even prohibit you from clicking Next until you’ve finished a step.
Premiere Elements now has 27 Guided Edits. Here are the two new ones (the first two are seen here), as well as some of the more interesting ones from prior versions.
Highlights and shadows should be adjusted.
This new Guided Edit walks you through a simple procedure that is commonly used to improve images, but in this case, it is applied to video recordings. It directs you to the Effects panel’s Shadow/Highlight button after you drop a clip onto the timeline. This contains an useful Auto Amounts checkbox, which may be all you need. Moving the Highlights slider to the right darkens the image, while moving the Shadows slider to the right lightens it. Sliders in Adobe Lightroom were made consistent a long time ago, and it would be good to see the same in Premiere Elements.
Overlays with Animated Objects
A smiley face is the last button on the right side of the interface. Tap it to get visuals for use as overlays in your video production. Animated Objects are new for 2022. Butterflies, stars, smilies, fire, and other symbols are among them. I put this feature to the test by putting a storm cloud over Niagara Falls. When I selected the object, it downloaded, which is good because it meant it wasn’t taking up space on my hard drive. Simply drag the object to the desired location in the preview window, and overlay tracks for both video and audio emerge (though my lightning had no sound). You can resize, move, and warp the object to your liking.
Exposure on both sides
Adobe previously released a double exposure Guided Edit in Photoshop Elements, and the effect is now available in Premiere Elements. It essentially allows you to play video behind a mask, which can be based on a photo or a pre-supplied graphic included with the program. PowerDirector goes this a step further by allowing you to animate the size and location of the mask with keyframes and even providing motion patterns for them.
I found some biker footage suitable for time lapse treatment for the Time-Lapse Guided Edit. The Guided Edit walks you through the process of speeding up the linked videos and changing the soundtrack. I prefer PowerDirector’s equivalent tool because, rather than simply speeding up the linked clips, it employs smooth transitions and masked transparent titles.
Animate the Skies
The Animate Skies effect adds a dramatic sky background to a shot. The Ultra Key effect and prefab graphics are sufficient. The modification works best if the sky in your source shot is quite dull and lacks noticeable clouds. It’s a little too theatrical for my tastes, but I could see it working in other instances.
Action Cam Repair
Video editing fans and action cam shooters have a lot in common. Top adventure YouTubers like Chris Rogers and Atua Mo’e are excellent examples. CyberLink PowerDirector’s Action Cam Center function also appeals to this demographic. Adobe’s Action Cam Fix Action Cam Footage Guided Edit, like that tool, repairs lens distortion, lighting, and color. Adobe sends users to the previously described Smart Trim tool, whereas PowerDirector includes effects such as stabilization, time-shift, and freeze-frame. The Adobe application does improve footage, but the PowerDirector version of this service is more potent in my opinion.
Make an Animation for a Social Post
The Create an Animated Social Post feature was inspired by the punchy captioned videos that you see on Facebook and Instagram. The tutorial begins by taking you to the motion title tool. It also requires you to impart motion to the main video, causing it to glide from left to right. Finally, it takes you to the panel for social sharing. Overall, it’s not a really ambitious tool, but it may be useful to some.
The Color Pop Guided Edit recreates an effect first seen in Spielberg’s Schindler’s List, in which a dramatic effect highlighted a young girl in a red coat in the midst of a largely black-and-white film. By switching to Expert mode, you begin with the Color Pop Guided Edit and then select the Red Noir Hollywood Look from the Effects menu. Then you launch the HSL Tuner tool, which allows you to alter not only the red content, but also the content of seven other hues. One disadvantage of this method is that it highlights everything in the given color. To limit where the color pops, you can use a mask or motion tracking in CyberLink PowerDirector and other software.
Video Effects that are Advanced
All of the effects that we’ve come to expect from a consumer video editor are available. There are several transitions, picture-in-picture, chroma-keying, scaling, opacity, and even keyframe-timed effects to choose from. There are plenty of animated and still picture-in-picture presets available, but you can simply resize a clip by dragging it atop another on the timeline. In addition, the Graphics tool allows you to insert animated and static elements such as flying birds (and other animals), stars, snow, and speech bubbles. Some complex effects are GPU-enabled, which means you don’t have to wait for them to be rendered on the timeline before you can see them.
There is now a Draw button under the effects entry, with options for utilizing a Pen, Circle, or Rectangle. The Pen is perhaps the most handy because it allows you to build masks for oddly shaped items like humans. With the feather, opacity, and expansion sliders, you can fine-tune your pick. The nice feature is that you can utilize motion tracking on them without having to launch a separate application. When compared to selecting in Photoshop, the Pen selection is more delicate: Before I’d finished the selection, the cursor would frequently and inexplicably transform into a rotating cursor. You can create numerous selections, and you can reverse the selection from the menu—useful if you want to apply the effect to anything outside your pick. If you want to apply numerous effects, the Copy selection option simplifies the process.
The tracking performed similarly to traditional motion tracking technologies. For my test, the bicycle subject vanishes behind a truck for a brief while, but after a few tries, I was able to reposition the mask over her and retrack for some kind of continuity. It’s worth noting that the option only appears with actual effects, not with modifications like lighting or color.
Premiere Elements launches quickly and performs well when performing standard video editing tasks. For rendering speed, I created a video with four clips of varying resolutions (some 1080p, some SD, some 4K) and a regular set of transitions, then rendered it to 1080p30 MPEG-4 @ 15Mbps, H.264 High Profile. The audio was MPEG AAC at 192 Kbps. I ran the tests on my personal workstation, which has a 3.4GHz Core i7 6700 CPU, 16GB RAM, and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 running 64-bit Windows 10 Pro.
Premiere Elements only supports a subset of Nvidia graphics cards for rendering acceleration, therefore I upgraded the GPU on my test system to one that Adobe does. Even with the specified video hardware, the rendering test took 3:41 (min:sec). This is well behind Corel VideoStudio’s 1:12 and CyberLink PowerDirector’s 1:15. Elements displays a progress bar with the percentage elapsed and time remaining during export, but not the elapsed time, current frame, or a video preview, as some other editors do.
Adobe Premiere Elements for macOS is a video editing program.
Premiere Elements, as previously stated, is compatible with macOS 10.14 and later. It operates natively on Intel-based Macs as well as those based on Apple Silicon processors like the M1, although only through Rosetta emulation. Premiere Elements, unlike Adobe Photoshop Elements, is not accessible for easy installation through the Mac App Store; instead, you must install it through an intermediate downloader/installer downloaded from the Adobe website.
The Mac version, thankfully, provides all of the same tools and capabilities as the Windows version, which you can read about elsewhere in this review, however the Windows version supports a few file formats that the Mac version does not. It cannot import WAV, WMA, or WMV files and cannot export AVI, WAV, WMV, or WMA files. In comparison, CyberLink’s recently released macOS version of PowerDirector, while giving a good portion of the functionality offered in the Windows version, still misses a handful.
On my test 3.1GHz MacBook Pro with Intel Core i5, 8GB RAM, and Intel Iris Plus 650 graphics, working with the timeline in Premiere Elements was reasonably snappy. However, in a fast video rendering performance test using the same media I used in the Performance section below, Premiere Elements (like with its Windows counterpart) performed poorly in comparison to the competitors, even with graphics acceleration enabled. The project took 7:31 (min:sec) to render, compared to 57 seconds for PowerDirector and 1:32 for iMovie.
Are you ready for the Red Carpet?
Adobe Premiere Elements is a wonderful choice if you enjoy the integration of the Elements Organizer and Photoshop Elements. It includes excellent capabilities that will help you learn how to construct appealing projects. However, it is not the most powerful or quickest enthusiast-level video editor, and it is far from the fastest at rendering projects. Elements also lag behind in terms of support for more contemporary standards like as 360-degree VR material and advanced features such as Multicam editing. Look to our Editors’ Choice winners for enthusiast video editing, Corel VideoStudio and CyberLink PowerDirector 365 on Windows, and Final Cut Pro on macOS.
OUR FINAL THOUGHTS
Adobe Premiere Elements is a video editing program that allows you to edit and combine videos with music, transitions, titles, photos and effects. If you’re looking for an easy-to-use software package that will allow you to create professional edits quickly and easily without having any experience in video production or design then this might be the right choice for your needs.
FREQUENTLY ASK QUESTIONS
Is Adobe Premiere Elements a good buy?
Adobe Premiere Elements is a wonderful choice if you enjoy the integration of the Elements Organizer and Photoshop Elements. It includes excellent capabilities that will help you learn how to construct appealing projects.
What are the possibilities with Premiere Elements?
Premiere Elements 2022 is video editing program designed for anyone who wishes to swiftly trim videos, create amusing creations, or mix several footage and photographs into spectacular movies. It provides: simple editing with automation and AI. Step-by-step instructions for editing and creating.
What is Adobe Elements used for?
What is Adobe Elements used for?
Photoshop Elements is the leading consumer photo editing software because it provides every level of user everything they need to organize, edit, create, and share, including: Adobe Sensei AI technology and automated options that do the heavy lifting so you can focus on bringing your vision to life*
Originally posted on March 31, 2022 @ 8:46 am