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Adobe Premiere Elements 2020 review

Guided video-editing suite for the casual photographer

Adobe Premiere Elements review
(Image: © Adobe Premiere Elements)

Our Verdict

Adobe Premiere Elements is a feature-rich video editing suite for users of all stripes, with ample tutorials and how-tos to keep things simple. It is not, however, a professional-grade solution.

Pros

  • One-time purchase option
  • Lots of tutorials

Cons

  • Does not support 360-degree or VR
  • Dated interface

Adobe’s lite version of its cross-platform video editing software takes the complex task of making your own movies and waters it down for the absolute novice. It is powered by a user-friendly interface and artificial intelligence technology that strives to automate the process as much as possible. 

While it doesn’t offer the same features as its more powerful cousin, Adobe Premiere Pro, it is still a highly functional video editing tool that costs less than $100. Perhaps the best thing about it is the fact that it is available as a one-off purchase and doesn’t necessitate a subscription to Creative Cloud. 

In this Adobe Premiere Elements 2020 Review, we will take a look at some of its most powerful features to decide if it truly is among the best video editing software for your PC.

Plans and pricing

Adobe Premier Elements review

Adobe Premiere Elements 2020 is available for the one-time retail price of $99.99 (Image credit: Adobe Premier Elements)

Adobe Premiere Elements 2020 is generally available for the one-time retail price of $99.99. However, Adobe offers frequent discounts and deals that reduce the cost of this software considerably. 

Once you have made your purchase, you get lifetime access to this software on up to two devices. You will need to have an active internet connection in order to register it on your computer. You can also sign out of one device to install it on other devices. 

If you are a professional photographer, you may also want to consider purchasing into a combo plan of $149.99, which offers lifetime access to both Adobe’s Premiere Elements and Photoshop Elements. 

Features

premium video editing suite. It can be used to make simple changes to enhance and polish your videos as well as to combine multiple video clips into a single movie. It is powered by Adobe Sensei, the company’s own artificial intelligence technology, which helps novice users optimize footage in a couple of clicks. Here are some of its most remarkable features:

Adobe Premiere Elements review

The quick mode is meant for the absolute beginner (Image credit: Adobe Premiere Elements)

For the absolute beginner who has never edited videos before, Adobe Premiere Elements offers the Quick Mode. It enables users to easily trim their videos to the right length and combine multiple video clips to make a longer movie. 

The trim feature uses Adobe Sensei, which automatically cuts out portions of your videos that are poorly shot or unnecessary. Meanwhile, the combine function automatically adds simple transitions in between clips and organizes them into a proper timeline. 

Adobe Premiere Elements review

The guided mode offers step-by-step instructions for advanced editing (Image credit: Adobe Premiere Elements )

For users who are a little more comfortable with video editing, Premiere Elements offers a guided mode that walks them through the step-by-step process of making more complex changes to their videos. 

This mode can be used in a variety of ways, for everything from trimming videos manually to adding custom transitions, and from adding text to creating adjustment layers. It can also be used to enhance your videos by adjusting brightness, contrast, and saturation. In addition, you can animate graphics, add music, or use any of the several available effects, such as bounce-back or picture-in-picture.

Adobe Premiere Elements review

The expert mode is reserved for the most complex edits in a distraction-free workspace (Image credit: Adobe Premiere Elements)

This mode is meant for advanced users and allows for making the most complicated edits with minimal interruptions. You can import videos directly from your file explorer to get started.

The guided and expert modes share the same interface on Premiere Elements 2020. Whereas the guided mode offers several prompts and step-by-step instructions, however, the expert mode is completely free of any distractions.

Interface

Adobe Premiere Elements review

A clean, if dated, interface (Image credit: Adobe Premiere Elements)

Adobe Premiere Elements 2020 is a cut-back version of the company’s full-fledged video editor. On launch, it greets you with a simple home screen that offers links to resources and options to switch between the photo editor and video editor. From there, you can navigate directly to the video editor, Adobe Premiere Elements 2020, which is divided into three modes based on functionality and ease of use. 

The quick mode offers the most barebones version of Elements, with options to automatically trim or combine multiple videos. This is followed by the guided mode, which is essentially a series of tutorials that show you how to make various changes to your videos. Finally, you have the expert mode, which is probably what you’ll be using most of the time. 

Of the three, expert mode is perhaps the most similar to other video editors, featuring several editing tools and a layer-based interface. The overall interface is clean and responsive, even if a little too simple.

Support

Adobe Premiere Elements review

Adobe Premiere Elements 2020 offers a knowledge base, feedback form, and chat support to its customers (Image credit: Adobe Premiere Elements )

Support for this software is offered in the form of a knowledge base, complete with tutorials and answers to frequently asked questions, as well as a dedicated forum moderated by members of the company’s product team. You can also do things like request a new feature or report an existing bug using the feedback form.

Apart from all this, Adobe offers a user manual to help new users get started with the software. This manual can be found on its website.

Competition

Adobe Premiere Elements review

Some other companies are offering more advanced features for the same price (Image credit: Adobe Premiere Elements)

Compared to other companies offering similar software, Adobe Premiere Elements lacks some advanced features like multicam editing and support for a few rarer file types. It also doesn’t boast nearly enough visual effects compared to its costlier cousin. These features are reserved for Adobe Premiere Pro, the company’s professional video-editing suite.

Competitors worth mentioning include Corel VideoStudio, Cyberlink PowerDirector, Nero Video, and Filmora from Wondershare.

Verdict

Adobe Premiere Elements is an excellent video editing suite for users both advanced and novice. It features in-depth tutorials, step-by-step instructions, and quality support to help new users get the hang of video alteration. 

However, it still lacks some of the advanced features currently offered by competitors, who are making their professional-grade software available for the same price. These features are usually available on Adobe Premiere Pro, which is significantly higher in price than Elements. 

At the end of the day, Adobe Premiere Elements is still a powerful video editor in its own right. With a host of animation, visual, and sound effects, it is enough to satisfy the needs of any casual photographer. But those looking for a professional-grade solution will want more.

The Verdict
3.5

out of 5

Adobe Premiere Elements 2020 review

Adobe Premiere Elements is a feature-rich video editing suite for users of all stripes, with ample tutorials and how-tos to keep things simple. It is not, however, a professional-grade solution.