Brendon Powell


Adobe Premiere Rush Review: A Noob’s Perspective

Before I sat down to edit my first gaming capture I consulted an editing PRO. Loryn’s best piece of advice was to first chop my raw footage into a cut sequence. As for software, she recommended that I use Final Cut Pro. The problem with Apple software is that I’m a Windows slave. After some internal debate, I settled on using a trial of Adobe Premiere Rush for my first video.

Also, I’m a process kind of doge. I like to establish a best-practice methodology or framework before I begin large projects. Even so, my overarching goal is quality output, and not to just churn out content.

The final product: Let’s Play Borderlands with Dad: GOTY Enhanced Edition, Ep 1

Full disclosure

Before consulting Loryn I was already aware of Adobe Premiere Pro and Adobe Premiere Rush, and I wasn’t considering any open source options. I’d been watching Learn How To Edit Stuff on YouTube, and they were using Premiere Pro in their tutorials. So, I definitely had some pre-existing bias in that direction.

I’m not entirely clueless about video editing. I know enough to be dangerous. There’s proof — somewhere on the continental USA — in the form of an unpublished aberration… A Dragon Ball Z animated music video to the tune of Father of Mine by Everclear. It’s lurking on a medieval laptop from 2003, waiting for its opportunity to create an entertainment singularity — antithetical to the feelings of joy and pleasure… What were we talking about?

Oh, right, video editing… Uh, basically, I found myself searching for a lot of options and settings that don’t exist in Adobe Premiere Rush.

Editing in Adobe Premiere Rush

I ran into quite a few brick walls due to ignorance. Like the accidental deletion of my initial work (I misunderstood the Adobe fine print while renaming my project).

Limitations of my machine

Adobe Rush doesn’t trim, cut, or adulterate your source video in any way. It just lets you move pieces around and re-order / omit portions of the raw footage.

Yeah, okay, fine, when exporting those edits are made manifest and a new video is bred from these dark rituals. I’m mentioning this because it’s the main reason Adobe Rush lags on my Surface Pro 7. It’s also not at all how I imagined the editing process to go.

Now, what compounded this issue for me is definitely due to hardware. My Surface Pro 7 lost a lot of it’s responsiveness after I started cutting and organizing the full 2 hours of footage.

To compensate, Rush has a way of ‘zooming’ in and out on the timeline. To keep my sanity, I had to ‘zoom’ in on 10 seconds of the timeline to work without lag. Without the timeline ‘zoom’, Rush would hang for 60 seconds or longer while rendering a preview.

Loryn said this issue might be eliminated by keeping all project assets on an external drive. I have not had yet an opportunity to test this out.

In retrospect this was a great feature to have. It allowed for the reclamation of cuts that had been ‘deleted’ erroneously by extending the trim of nearby pieces.

The best thing

It’s free to try, but the Adobe Premiere Rush trial grants 3 exports, only. Certain bells and whistles are removed, but it wasn’t clear — and still isn’t — which bells or whistles are not included in the trial.

Mistakes made in Adobe Premiere Rush

The first headache I ran into happened while I was building my cut sequence… That is, the first headache after restarting from scratch.

I had a continuous 2-hour shot that needed to be cut, organized, and trimmed. The mistake I made has to do with how Adobe Rush forces you into a box. You can’t just cut and rearrange your clips on any line provided, and especially not if you’ve already added synchronized audio. The primary video line has it’s own rules that it follows without preferences, settings, or options.

This was overcome by sequentially organizing cuts on a separate line and then merging them all together before further trimming.

Trying stuff out

One thing I always do with new software is to try out all the features. I always want to see if I can figure out the best-practice way in which to use everything.

Project sequences

One neat feature I had the complete wrong idea about in Adobe Premiere Rush is sequencing.

Sequencing allows for the production of separate videos, all inside one project, that utilizes the same assets. I thought I would be able to cut, copy, and paste edited clips into each sequence and then export the entire video as one full clip of sequences. No, no, no, that’s not what this is for, and you can’t do any of that.

Why is this a neat feature?

For two reasons:

  1. Consolidation of project resources;
  2. No threat to raw footage.

Example: Vlogger wants to use raw source material for a series of videos. Sequencing would allow for that by organizing project assets into one grouped file and separated by sequences. No doubling up of edits / cuts and zero potential to accidentally cut or delete viable content.

Syncing audio and video

This is difficult to do in Adobe Premiere Rush. There are no options to dial in a specific starting point for an audio edits or trims. Everything has to be guided by hand.

You can ‘zoom’ in on the timeline to get closer, but there’s a limit to how closely content can be cut or trimmed. You can snap assets to a manually chosen position, but there you’re still limited by the resolution of the zoom.

In fairness, this will only be a problem for dubbing or when inserting separate voice tracks for a live-action shot.

Not-so-deep thoughts

Seems like Adobe Premiere Rush was designed as a companion application for Adobe Premiere Pro and not as a stand-alone program. Like a gateway drug, Adobe’s end goal seems to be to get users to pony up for Adobe Premiere Pro. They created a lightweight tool where trivial editing can be completed in preparation for heavier editing at a later date. Their marketing machine is constantly nudging you, whispering: “Hey, hey… Rush works a lot better with Adobe Premiere Pro you stupid idiot.”

I really struggled with the UI of Premiere Rush at first. If you were inspired to try out an effect based on the power of Adobe Premiere Pro, you’ll most likely be out of luck.

Tracking the placement of images was tedious, too. I added a Metal Gear Solid meme, and that was easier said than done. So was the Shinku Hadoken slow-down-charge-up. Adobe Rush does not come equipped with an exacto-knife.

Yay or nay: Adobe Premiere Rush

👍 All in all, I like it. I will use up the rest of my trial’s exports playing around with it.

Even with the struggle, the UX/UI is pretty and the limitations kept my video focused yet simple. This definitely increased the quality in the end. I don’t need anything more powerful for now.

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