Final Cut Pro X versus Adobe Premiere: the video editing software debate to meet industry standards

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Final Cut Pro X versus Adobe Premiere. The debate about editing software will always be there. What is the industry standard? What should we be teaching? Adobe Premiere? Final Cut Pro X? Something else? 

Here is my opinion.

Final Cut Pro X is simple, easy, and the fastest software I have ever used. I can do three times the amount of work and projects that I could produce with Premiere or any other software. My students learn Final Cut Pro X in a 60-90 minute lesson. Premiere would take 2-3 weeks to teach my kids the same things. Maybe it’s me, or maybe it’s the software. That is up for debate as well.

That said, many of my students who graduate and continue on with video in college, report they are asked to learn Premiere or Avid, and yes, many still use Final Cut Pro X. There was, and still is, a stigma with Final Cut, because it’s Apple, it’s a little more expensive (you get what you pay for), people still think it’s simply iMovie on steroids, and therefore dismiss its attributes. The reality is that my former students tell me that once they learned how to edit using one platform, they find it very easy to learn a new one. That makes perfect sense to me.

I have been fortunate enough to work with the Apple product managers and developers of the software from time to time and constantly ask for professional examples from the television and film industry. I can assure you Final Cut Pro X is among the industry standards and will become more prevalent over time. 

Ultimately to me, the “industry standard” is to just get students editing, on whatever editing software you can get your hands on. Once students know how to tell video stories with sound, image, and pacing, it doesn’t matter the software moving forward. In fact, may televisions stations use something called EDIUS. To each their own.

In my opinion, there is no more powerful video production resource than Apple products. Unfortunately, we work in schools where whatever is cheapest, or whatever our tech people like best, will be what we choose. However, as along as you are offering your students the opportunity to tell stories with video, even if it is editing with iMovie on their iOS device, you are meeting the industry standard.

Don Goble

Don Goble is an award-winning Broadcast, Technology, Multimedia and Film Instructor at Ladue Horton Watkins High School in St. Louis. Journalism Education Association’s National Broadcast Adviser of the Year in 2015, Don is also an Apple Distinguished Educator, PBS Lead Digital Innovator and author who advocates for media and digital literacy for all learners. Don masterfully engages students to author and craft media messages to build their voice and share their story.

dgoble has 47 posts and counting.See all posts by dgoble

4 thoughts on “Final Cut Pro X versus Adobe Premiere: the video editing software debate to meet industry standards

  • November 4, 2016 at 2:50 pm
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    Thank you, Don. This is an excellent review, and helps me justify why I want to purchase Final Cut Pro for a newsroom that already has Premier and iMovie.

  • November 6, 2016 at 7:59 am
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    Thank you for reading Michelle and for offering your feedback. I value your opinion.

  • June 8, 2017 at 9:56 am
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    I think putting effort into learning Premiere is actually worth it if you’re aiming for bigger and more advanced projects. Also it synergises perfectly with the rest of Adobe’s products for a smoother workflow. And its on windows (important).

  • October 4, 2017 at 12:55 pm
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    Joe, I think by stating “Premiere is actually worth it if you’re aiming for bigger and more advanced projects” is exactly the issue and problem, you’re feeding the idea that FCPX isn’t a suitable NLE for professional feature film or commercial work.. however we already have two multi-million dollar films fully edited in only FCPX, which I think everyone loves to ignore. If you watched Focus with Will Smith (Warner bros) or Whisky Tango Foxtrot (Paramount) then you watched feature films cut on FCPX.

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