Hitfilm VS Adobe Premiere Pro

MorganStudios Website User Posts: 46 Just Starting Out

I am wanting to be an editor and a lot of places are asking to know how to use adobe premiere pro, are Hitfilm and adobe premiere pro the same? Could I transfer my knowledge over to Adobe or do I have to learn everything over again?


  • triforcefx
    triforcefx United StatesModerator, Website User Posts: 1,157 Moderator

    The majority of NLEs (such as HitFilm and Premier) have some skills that transfer between each other. If you are familiar with one NLE, it's much easier to learn a second and even easier to learn a third. However, there is always a learning curb. Definitely play around in Premier and get used to it before saying you know it.

    On the plus side, editing skills transfer almost 1:1. If you can make a good edit in HitFilm, you can make a good edit in Premier, once you get the hang of the actual software. This brings me to my second point- if you can show someone your portfolio, they may be willing to train you in Premier- as long as your portfolio proves you know how to edit. In some cases, they may even continue letting you use HitFilm as long as you can still deliver a quality product with it.

  • MorganStudios
    MorganStudios Website User Posts: 46 Just Starting Out
    edited February 2019

    So what's the difference between hitfilm pro and premier pro

    Are the functions relatively the same? 

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,990 Ambassador

    Differences are numerous. Premiere is a stronger EDITOR than Hitfilm, but Hitfilm can do all that VFX stuff that requires Ae in the Adobe world. Otherwise, a feature-by-feature comparison would cover hundreds (if not thousands) of little changes and ain't no-one got time for that! As a small example, both Hitfilm and Premiere have keyboard shortcuts for tons of features, but those shortcuts are almost completely different between the two programs. Terminology will be different - Adobe uses "Adjustment Layers," Hitfilm "Grade Layers," but they're the same thing... Co-ordinate systems are different. Hitfilm's 0,0 point is the center of the frame while almost every other NLE puts 0,0 in the top-left corner.

    Otherwise, as triforce says, basic editing skills (and this is just about putting clips together in order with smiith edits and good pacing) are software-independent. If you can cut well you'll be able to cut well in any software (after some learning of individual software).

    Pretty much any NLE works in a similar basic paradigm. Clips can load into a trimmer window, in/out points are set and the clips moved to the timeline. Clips are represented on the timeline by rectangular blocks, the edges of which can be grabbed and dragged to change in/out points. You'll have some sort of razor/slice tool to trim clips, you'll have some sort of speed change function, you'll have effects to keyframe. You'll be able to abut clips and add transitions. Those really are the basic tools to edit everything. Other features are a bonus.

    Your Hitfilm knowledge will about 80/90% transfer over to Adobe (or any other NLE). There will be a relearning curve.

    Best advice is to just download the Premiere demo and play.


  • MorganStudios
    MorganStudios Website User Posts: 46 Just Starting Out
  • WhiteCranePhoto
    WhiteCranePhoto Website User Posts: 928 Enthusiast

    @MorganStudios if you're looking to be a professional editor, look to Avid. It's the industry standard for pretty much every industry but weddings (which is the one area where Premiere actually DOES reign supreme).

    There's a free version of Avid MC available called Media Composer First. Even though you won't find HitFilm itself in many professional environments, you can certainly do professional level work with it, and if you know how to use a professional NLE like Avid MC then it won't matter what NLE you use for your own work.


  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,990 Ambassador

    @WhiteCranePhoto Another good point.

    Actually, @MorganStudios if you're going to be a pro editor you basically need to download the demos to as many NLEs as you can and learn as many as you can. Some gigs, they won't care what you edit on as long as you can deliver a good cut. Some jobs you're going to have to use program XYZ, either because the producer has a bug up for a particular program or you're in an environment where you have to transfer data with other editors.

    The FULL version of Avid is expensive, but Media Composer First will teach you. The key thing is to use available demos to learn and NOT to pull the trigger on a buy unless/until you have the job that requires the program.

    Specifically for Adobe I no longer recommend anyone buy that unless they are working pros. Why? Stupid rental. With Adobe you HAVE to pay them every month/year or they'll shut off your software and you can kiss your old projects goodbye, so you don't want to get sucked into that path unless/until you're working enough to pay for the too.

    In my own work I edit/create with Vegas Pro and Hitfilm for personal projects. I've used Premiere for work (when I HAVE to) and I've used Avid for work (when I HAVE to) and I've used FCPX for work (when I HAVE to). Sometimes I've been able to just use Vegas and Hitfilm. It depends on the client AND the project. So I've done work for a few of the local TV stations. At the SAME station I've done jobs where I could use Vegas and Hitfilm - maybe I was whipping out a promo spot that was a one-and done - as well as jobs where I had to use FCPX (because it's a continuing series and all the title/credit/bumper templates were already in FCPX and other editors would return to that program later).

    Also bear in mind (and this is getting subjective) that "industry standard" doesn't actually mean "the best," but just "most widely used." Vegas Pro for awhile actually had a little niche in news production: ABC, NBC and CBS all had Vegas in the news vans because for simple cuts/dissolves assembly there's just nothing faster. Then they all shifted from PC to MAC and went to FCPX. FCPX, honestly, isn't that good (and Apple is about to cripple it again), but it's 1/10th the price of Avid, so.... Mac market share. I also know several VFX houses in Hollywood used to use Vegas for previz and storyboard edits - again, because it's the fastest thing out there for quick assembly. Final edits would be done in Avid or Adobe because those were "the standard" (and a movie might involve a dozen studios sharing assets and timelines. In the above examples Vegas got used for the initial work, because it was better for those tasks, but then things shifted to the "industry standard" for ease of sharing.

    On a related note a few years ago a blog talked to Territory Studios about work they did on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Territory was using Hitfilm a lot for previz because Hitfilm is quick and easy and you can do some 3D stuff easier in Hitfilm than in Ae. Of course the finals got done in Ae.... Because it's the "industry standard" and everyone had it for file sharing.

    So "Industry standards" can hold industries back as companies can resist trying new tools in favor of established tools everyone has to share files with.

    This isn't just software, either! In the music industry the Yamaha NS10m was the "industry standard" reference monitor for almost 20 years. Not because it was a particularly good monitor (it was ok, but it was also common for everyone to stuff tissue paper in the tweeters because the NS10m had a bright, harsh tone), but, again, "everyone had them" so my Ns10m mix would sound the same on your Nx10m speakers, where it would sound different on a JBL.

    To bring it back around, if persuing editing as a career, learn everything you can. Grab free/demo versions, certainly, of Premiere, Avid and Resolve as those are widely used. Take a look at Vegas Pro and Grass Valley as well, if you can. FCPX if you're on Mac. The bottom line is the more software you learn to at lest do the basic navigation and cutting in the more you can get hired because the more software you'll be able to honestly say "yes, I know that."

    Final note, don't bluff and say you know something you don't. That will return to bite you on the butt. I'm thinking of a video guy I know who has bluffed a few times and gotten caught. I took half his pay to save his ass. Thrice.

  • WhiteCranePhoto
    WhiteCranePhoto Website User Posts: 928 Enthusiast

    Yes, bluffing is counterproductive. Most shops that need craft editors will be willing to train you on Avid if you have the editing chops. I do most of my editing in Resolve and Lightworks, partly because my focus is on cinematography and color grading. Getting edits from Premiere into any professional grade color grading suite is a pain, so I try to avoid it as much as possible. Hardly any handoffs from Premiere to Scratch or Resolve went well.

    Now if only HitFilm had AAF and/or EDL support along with Redcode support... ahem. It's a great compositor... it would be even better if I could use it with my own raw footage, but HitFilm doesn't support it (another reason that I usually edit in Resolve -- I can use my raw footage, and don't have to spend time generating proxies first). 

    It's also true that "industry standard" doesn't always also mean "good" -- case in point, the Zoom h4n. They're terrible recorders, yet very popular. Baffling. 


  • HitFilmer62296
    HitFilmer62296 Website User Posts: 5

    Triem23, that was a great read and i could tell its coming from real world experience. That is invaluable. I'm not a power-user by any means and not in the big studios with postproduction. But, i think when you look at a package, at least the indie-types or smaller studios need to kind of see what the software companies are about, their philosophies and where you think they will be in the years to come.

    >FCPX, honestly, isn't that good (and Apple is about to cripple it again), but it's 1/10th the price of Avid, so.... Mac >market share.

    Dumb Q, but what do you mean by 'Apple is about to cripple it again'? They can't be going sub.....

  • Triem23
    Triem23 Moderator Moderator, Website User, Ambassador, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 18,990 Ambassador

    @Hitfilmer62296 thanks.

    Re: Apple. Apple is dropping a lot of codecs from the OS. It's going to be a bit of a pain for users of Cineform, DNxHD  and older SD codecs. If I were a Mac editor I'd already be frantically batch transcoding years of archive files to newer formats. 


  • Hictor
    Hictor Website User, Imerge Beta Tester, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 342 Enthusiast
    edited February 2019

    Fun fact: 

    Resolve runs faster on MAC then FCPX, despite the fact that MACS are zealously more optimized to run FCPX.

    Apple, you had one job. 

  • JBaymore
    JBaymore Website User Posts: 337 Enthusiast

    Triem23 said:  "So "Industry standards" can hold industries back as companies can resist trying new tools in favor of established tools everyone has to share files with."

    The 10 words that doom a business: "But that is not the way we've always done it."



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