The only way to accurately


The only way to accurately determine which is faster, is to render identical projects and time them. Why bother? Don’t use render times alone to make this decision. Vegas and Premiere Pro are two of the best editors available. However, Adobe products are so convoluted in their interface and techniques, that even if it could render faster than Vegas, the editing will take much longer with Premiere, so you’ll make up time there by using Vegas. I’ll say this, though. Premiere + a supported hardware card will blow Vegas away for final output renders. For software-only renders – it’s a toss up. Assuming your editing on a pro level (sans special effects, transitions, etc. using mostly TV style cuts, crossfades, and occasional compositing) a 90 minute render using the DV codec is the fastest posible route. However this could still take a few hours.

If time is a problem, you might want to consider having a dedicated rendering computer so you can continue to work with your main editing machine. All you’d need is removable, swappable disks. You could pull the project disk, insert it into the rendering system, leave it to render away, while you start a new project using a fresh disk in your main video editing system. If you use Vegas, the rendering machine can be fairly cheap, since Vegas has a much leaner and stable code structure than Premiere, so it can run on a much more humble machine.

In addition, I think that if you use multiple cameras – go with Vegas, which IMO handles this kind of editing much more gracefully. If you’re using clips with effects, compositing, transitions, etc. Then they’re a toss-up as far as performance goes. But, with Vegas it will still be way easier to accomplish anything, so you’re bound to finish editing sooner anyway :).

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An essential part of being a post-production specialist is knowing your tools and how to use them. But it is equally important to know when another tool will increase your ability and efficiency.