Learn about the workflow, starting from import through the final output containing the most general steps to edit video in Premiere Pro.

The steps you take in editing video, from import or capture through final output, make up your workflow. The basic workflow describes the most general steps you would take with most projects. Specific types of workflows, such as the P2 workflow or the cross-platform workflow, explain the noteworthy settings, variations, or issues specific to each type.

Reviewing the entire workflow for a production before creating a project and first sequence can help you optimize Adobe Premiere Pro for the needs of that production. It can also help you plan for the special needs your production has at any particular step. For example, if you learn, before you begin, the parameters of your footage, you can select the best sequence presets for your production.

Whether you use Adobe Premiere Pro to edit video for broadcast, DVD, or the web, you’re likely to follow a workflow like the one outlined below. 

Accessibility in Premiere Pro

Accessibility refers to making products usable for people with visual, auditory, motor, and other disabilities.

Examples of accessibility features for software products include screen reader support, text equivalents for graphics, keyboard shortcuts, change of display colors to high contrast, and so on.

Premiere Pro provides some tools that make it accessible to use and tools that you can use to create accessible content.

For Premiere Pro video editors who need accessibility features, the application offers:

  • Screen reader or screen magnifier support 
  • Keyboard navigation 
  • Support for operating system accessibility features

For more information, see Accessibility in Premiere Pro

Check your system for potential issues

Premiere Pro comes with an in-built utility that scans your system. This report displays automatically when you launch Premiere Pro if it detects known issues with your system configuration, such as incompatible graphics card drivers.

You can also run this utility at any time and get this report by clicking Help > System Compatibility Report

Click Save to save the report as a text file. This text file lists all the devices scanned, even if there are no system compatibilities. This report is useful if you need to contact Support with any questions.

Click Ignore if you want to ignore the list of incompatibilities mentioned in the System Compatibility Report and continue to run Premiere Pro.


Clicking Ignore button does not prevent the System Compatibility Report from ever appearing again. If Premiere Pro finds a new incompatibility in the future, the System Compatibility Report appears displaying just the new incompatibility.

An example system compatibility report
An example system compatibility report

For more information on system requirements and GPU cards required, see:

Before you begin editing

Before you begin editing in Premiere Pro, you need footage to work with. You can either shoot your own footage, or work with footage that other people have shot. You can also work with graphics, audio files, and more.

While you shoot, organize your shots and take log notes. You can also adjust and monitor footage as you shoot, capturing directly to a drive.

Many commands have keyboard shortcut equivalents, so you can complete tasks with minimal use of the mouse. You can also create or edit keyboard shortcuts.

Find the keyboard shortcuts for a tool, button, or menu command by doing any of the following:

  • For a tool or button, hold the pointer over the tool or button until its tool tip appears. If available, the keyboard shortcut appears in the tool tip after the tool description.
  • For menu commands, look for the keyboard shortcut at the right of the command.
  • For the most-used keyboard shortcuts not shown in tool tips or on menus, see the tables in this article. For a list of default and current shortcuts, choose Edit > Keyboard Shortcuts (Windows) or Premiere Pro > Keyboard Shortcuts (Mac OS).
  • Use the search field in the Keyboard Customization dialog box to find specific commands quickly.

For more information, see Keyboard shortcuts in Premiere Pro

Get started editing

After you have acquired footage, follow the steps to get started editing with Premiere Pro.

1. Start or open a project

Open an existing project (Windows: Ctrl+O, Mac: Cmd+O), or start a new one (Windows: Ctrl+Alt+N, Mac: Opt+Cmd+N) from the Premiere Pro Start screen.

If you are starting a new project, the New Project dialog launches. From the New Project dialog, you can specify the name and location of the project file, the video capture format, and other settings for your project. (See Creating and changing projects.) After you have chosen settings in the New Project dialog, click OK.

After you have exited the New Project dialog, the New Sequence dialog appears. Choose the sequence preset in the dialog that matches the settings of your footage. First, open the camera type folder, then the frame rate folder (if necessary), and then clicking a preset. Name the sequence at the bottom of the dialog, and then click OK.

If you need help choosing a sequence preset, see this FAQ entry: “How do I choose the right sequence settings?”

To open an existing project, click a link under Open A Recent Item in the Premiere Pro Start screen. After clicking a link, the project launches.

2. Capture and import video and audio

For file-based assets, using the Media Browser you can import files from computer sources in any of the leading media formats (Windows: Ctrl+Alt+I, Mac: Opt+Cmd+I). Each file you capture or import automatically becomes a clip in the Project panel.

Alternatively, using the Capture panel, capture footage directly from a camcorder or VTR (Windows: F5, Mac: F5). With the proper hardware, you can digitize and capture other formats, from VHS to HDTV.

You can also import various digital media, including video, audio, and still images. Premiere Pro also imports Adobe® Illustrator® artwork or Photoshop® layered files, and it translates After Effects® projects for a seamless, integrated workflow. You can create synthetic media, such as standard color bars, color backgrounds, and a countdown. (See About capturing and digitizing.)

You can also use Adobe® Bridge to organize and find your media files. To place the files directly into Premiere Pro, use the Place command in Adobe Bridge (Windows: Ctrl+Alt+O, Mac: Opt+Cmd+O).

In the Project panel, you can label, categorize, and group footage into bins to keep a complex project organized. You can open multiple bins simultaneously, each in its own panel, or you can nest bins, one inside another. Using the Project panel Icon view, you can arrange clips in storyboard fashion to visualize or quickly assemble a sequence.


Before capturing or importing audio, ensure that Preferences > Audio > Default Track Format is set to match the desired channel format.

3. Assemble and refine a sequence

Using the Source Monitor, you can view clips, set edit points, and mark other important frames before adding clips to a sequence. For convenience, you can break a master clip into any number of subclips, each with its own In and Out points. You can view audio as a detailed waveform and edit it with sample-based precision.

A: Source Monitor, B: Program Monitor, C: Timeline panel

You add clips to a sequence in the Timeline panel by dragging them there or by using the Insert (Windows: ..., Mac: ,,,)or Overwrite buttons (Windows: ..., Mac: ,,,) in the Source Monitor. You can automatically assemble clips into a sequence that reflects their order in the Project panel. You can view the edited sequence in the Program Monitor or watch the full-screen, full-quality video on an attached television monitor. (See Timeline panels and Adding clips to a sequence.)

Refine the sequence by manipulating clips in the Timeline panel, with either context-sensitive tools or tools in the Tools panel. Use the specialized Trim Monitor to fine-tune the cut point between clips. By nesting sequences—using a sequence as a clip within another sequence (Windows: , Mac: Cmd+U)—you can create effects you couldn’t achieve otherwise.

4. Add titles

You can easily create titles directly on your video using the Essential Graphics panel in Adobe Premiere Pro. Use these keyboard shortcuts to create a new text layer (Windows: Ctrl+T, Mac: Cmd+T). You can add text, shapes, and so on, to layers that you can rearrange and adjust. The title can also be saved as a Motion Graphics template which can be reused and shared. For more information on using the Essential Graphics panel, see Create titles and motion graphics.

5. Add transitions and effects

The Effects panel includes an extensive list of transitions and effects you can apply to clips in a sequence. You can adjust these effects, and a clip’s motion, opacity, and Variable Rate Stretch using the Effect Controls panel (Windows: Ctrl+D, Mac: Cmd+D).

The Effect Controls panel also lets you animate a clip’s properties using traditional keyframing techniques. As you adjust transitions, the Effect Controls panel displays controls designed especially for that task. Alternatively, you can view and adjust transitions and a clip’s effect keyframes in a Timeline panel. (See Transition overview: applying transitions and Apply effects to clips.)

6.Mix audio

For track-based audio adjustments, the Audio Track Mixer emulates a full-featured audio mixing board, complete with fade and pan sliders, sends, and effects.

  • Audio clip mixer: (Windows: Shift+9, Mac: Shift+9)
  • Audio track mixer: (Windows: Shift+6, Mac: Shift+6)

Premiere Pro saves your adjustments in real time. With a supported sound card, you can record audio through the sound mixer, or mix audio for 5.1 surround sound. For more information, see Mixing audio tracks and clips.


Deliver your edited sequence in the medium of your choice: tape, DVD, Blu-ray Disc, or movie file (Windows: , Mac: ). Using Adobe Media Encoder, you can customize the settings for MPEG-2, MPEG-4, FLV, and other codecs and formats, to the needs of your viewing audience. For more information, see Types of exporting.

Work across platforms

You can work on a project across computer platforms. For example, you can start on Windows and continue on Mac OS. A few functions change, however, as the project moves from one platform to the other.

Sequence settings

You can create a project on one platform and then move it to another. Premiere Pro sets the equivalent sequence settings for the second platform, if there is an equivalent. For example, you can create a DV project containing DV capture and device control settings on Windows. When you open the project on Mac OS, Premiere Pro sets the appropriate Mac DV capture and device control settings. Saving the project saves these Mac OS settings. Premiere Pro translates these settings to Windows settings if the project is later opened on Windows.


All video effects available on Mac OS are available in Windows. Windows effects not available on the Mac appear as offline effects if the project is opened on the Mac. These effects are designated “Windows only” in Premiere Pro Help. All audio effects are available on both platforms. Effect presets work on both platforms (unless the preset applies to an effect not available on a given platform).

Adobe Media Encoder presets

Presets created on one platform are not available on the other.

Preview files

Preview files made on one platform are not available on the other. When a project is opened on a different platform, Premiere Pro rerenders the preview files. When that project is then opened on its original platform, Premiere Pro renders the preview files yet again.

High-bit-depth files

Windows AVI files containing either 10-bit 4:2:2 uncompressed video (v210), or 8-bit 4:2:2 uncompressed video (UYVU) are not supported on Mac OS.

Preview rendering

The playback quality of unrendered non-native files is not as high as playback quality of these files on their native platforms. For example, AVI files do not play back as well on Mac OS as they do on Windows. Premiere Pro renders preview files for non-native files on the current platform. Premiere Pro always renders preview files in a native format. A red bar in the timeline indicates which sections contain files needing rendering.

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