Adobe Unveils Performance Upgrades for After Effects & VR Workflows for Premiere

NAB is only three short days away and Adobe has promised to unveil all the new features they're including in Creative Cloud 2016 at the event. Until then, they've provided a sneak peek at some exciting updates coming to After Effects and Premiere Pro.

Now, before you get too excited, let's be clear. This "sneak peek" is just that — a sneak peek, and is centered only on performance upgrades for After Effects, as well as a few small, but still exciting updates to Premiere Pro. Again, Adobe is waiting until NAB to make a full official announcement of all of the new features they'll be adding to Creative Cloud.

Okay, now that that's out of the way, let's get to it.

After Effects

"Under the Hood" Improvements

According to their blog post, Adobe will be improving performance and quality, as well as enhancing video and audio playback, including a new preview architecture that "delivers real-time playback of cached frames with synced audio."  Also, After Effects is about to get a whole lot faster. From Adobe:

The next version of After Effects CC is faster and more reliable from file import and project load through to final render. Scrubbing the timeline, working with complex masks, and editing large numbers of keyframes is now more fluid, thanks to accelerated interface interactions.

This video gives you a quick overview of these upgrades:

Faster 3D Workflows

The effects in After Effects are about to get a whole lot faster, too. Lumetri Color and Gaussian Blur (to name a couple) are getting GPU-acceleration so you can use effects, make changes, and see instant results. According to Adobe, testers have seen speeds increase up to 5x. The color grading workflow for Lumetri Color has also been updated with HSL Secondaries and new Looks presets.

Furthermore, Adobe is providing better integration with MAXON Cinema 4D for those interested in doing 3D modeling right in After Effects:

Improved MAXON Cinema 4D exporter: Export animated 3D text and shape layers to Cinema 4D for a roundtrip Live 3D motion graphics workflow. Customize your exported elements in Cinema 4D (Cinema 4D Lite is included with After Effects), save your changes, and see them update live in After Effects via CINEWARE.

Video is no longer available:

Adobe's also improving After Effects with faster image sequence importing (10x faster), improvements to Adobe Stock, Creative Cloud libraries, and Adobe Character Animator. To learn more about these upgrades, head on over to Adobe.

Premiere Pro

New Media Management

Managing your data in Premiere Pro will be better than ever. According to Adobe, these upgrades give you more control over "the handling of your files during the ingest process, and allow for more flexibility when working with very large media."

Support for More Native Formats and Auto Proxy Generation

Not only will Premiere Pro support 6K and 8K files from RED Weapon, you'll be able to automatically generate proxies on ingest, and still work on the original files while you wait for transcoding to finish.

More Lumetri Color Upgrades

As we've already mentioned, Lumetri Color is getting a speed boost, but it's also getting a few great features, like new SpeedLooks linear looks, enhanced scopes, and new HSL Secondaries, which allow for "quick, intuitive selection of color ranges within a shot."

Support for VR Workflows

Everybody and their mom is talking about virtual reality, and part of Adobe's Premiere upgrade includes support for VR workflows.

You can import equi-rectangular stitched video media and – with a click of a button in the monitors – enter VR Video mode, which allows you to use pan and tilt controls to preview the experience inside the sphere. You can even click-drag directly on the video clip and freely pan around so you know what your viewer would be seeing when looking in a given direction. When you’re ready to share, you can easily add a metadata flag to ensure you’ll get the full panoramic experience on supported sites like YouTube and Facebook.

To learn more about the features included in this Premiere sneak peek, head on over to Adobe.

Again, we won't get the full list of upgrades until Adobe announces them at NAB, so stay tuned and look out for our live coverage at this year's NAB Show.     

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Your Comment


All sounds great on paper, hopefully will not throw up stability issues which I've suffered from in the past, especially as Premiere Pro has been very stable for me recently.

April 13, 2016 at 1:22AM


Exactly, I see a tendency to always add new features (not only Adobe, but also Apple) without regard for stability. I can't afford to wait for days or weeks for a fix while not being able to deliver to my clients. I'll just wait and see if there are any major bugs before upgrading...

April 13, 2016 at 4:59AM

Gerbert Floor
DP / Director / Camera / Editor

is there a release date yet?

April 13, 2016 at 2:09AM, Edited April 13, 2:09AM

Mike Keelin

It's usually 4-6 months later when they release roughly.

April 13, 2016 at 8:54AM, Edited April 13, 8:54AM

Howard L Hughes
Content Creator

I hope they start giving SpeedGrade more attention. Seems like an app with incredible potential.

April 13, 2016 at 8:07AM, Edited April 13, 8:06AM


Think they're trying to integrate everything into Premiere, which makes sense. Why take your whole project out into a separate program, when you can just shift the interface into Color Mode and viola. The Lumetri upgrade is a nice step forward.

Still missing true RAW support though. Adjusting only exposure and color balance isn't enough. The need to go whole hog.

April 13, 2016 at 11:11AM, Edited April 13, 11:13AM

Motion Designer/Predator

RAW support is there, just not in the Lumetri panel. Would be nice to have it all in the one panel though...

April 14, 2016 at 9:21AM


So stoked to see proxy workflow addressed by Adobe. I've been in a situation or two where I've needed to edit compressed UHD on a really underpowered computer—both times, I ended up turning to FCP X solely because they have such a good proxy workflow. I prefer Premiere, so it's cool to see them address this!

As a big user of Audition, I'm intrigued by the Pr-->Au-->ME workflow. It seems nice, but it also seems like a great way to make revisions more complicated. Will have to give it a shot when it's available to see.

April 13, 2016 at 8:34AM

David S.

Proxies is also what I'm looking forward to the most. It's hands down my favorite aspect of FCPX.

April 13, 2016 at 1:39PM, Edited April 13, 1:39PM

Joe O

Me, too! I work in an all-Avid workplace, and while I deeply hate the Avid user interface, I love much about its technical underpinnings. One big problem, though, is the lack of easy proxy creation while editing. I'm working on a UHD show right now, and it's tough; a massive amount of transcoding upfront and a trickier overall workflow than seems right.

April 15, 2016 at 4:54PM

Benjamin Reichman
Post Supervisor/AE/Editor

This sounds pretty awesome to me. I'm curious to know what else they will unveil at NAB.

April 13, 2016 at 9:59AM, Edited April 13, 9:59AM


The HSL Secondaries seems to be along the right track. But unless I'm missing something, there doesn't seem to be a way to put a look on the footage and then bring the skintones back overtop by omitting the skin mask from the look - like you can in resolve with a parallel node.

April 13, 2016 at 1:09PM

Clayton Arnall
Camera Pointer

Very good point

April 13, 2016 at 3:05PM

Mike Keelin

I'm on Premiere Pro CC 2015.2, and it's a big improvement. It's quite stable now.

I did have to disable the automatic gain control in Windows 7 because it was messing with the audio timing in Premiere. But, after doing so, I was able to edit and play footage at full resolution with no problems.

April 14, 2016 at 7:20AM

Glenn Bossik

Same here, Premiere Pro has been super stable recently. I love the idea of the proxies but don't know if it's a enough to tempt me to an upgrade. If it ain't broke don't fix it. I work with GH4 footage and have now got a great workflow transcoding footage as it transfers from the card into a super slick DNX format that scrubs silky smooth on the timeline and still looks great without the need for proxies. My only issue is that a 1GB file is transformed into a 15GB file making storage an issue sometimes. If anyone wants to offer a solution to that I'm all ears.

April 14, 2016 at 10:01AM, Edited April 14, 10:01AM

John Stockton
Filmmaker, Editor.

I also worry about stability as these apps get more bloated. CS6 Premiere Pro is 998MB, while CC 2015 Premiere Pro is a whopping 2.5GB! At some point, I have to think these apps are so RAM hungry with so much code that they will become less and less stable. I would much rather have ALL bug fixes and stability issues resolved before adding new features...but hey, that's just me.

April 14, 2016 at 11:46AM

David Patterson

Good to see them working on their proxy workflow. Still doesn't seem as clean as FCP X's proxy workflow (thats been out for years one of the main reasons I switched to FCP X full time especially with Red files) a lot of clicks to do the same thing, but good to see these new updates are focused more so on performance than new features that don't work well.

April 14, 2016 at 4:08PM

Charles C.
Editor/ Director/ Director of Photography/ Wannabe Thinker

The VR features will help me a ton - I produce 360 content almost every week and anything to help preview 360/VR content in Premiere Pro is if they only fix that damn audio stutter with an empty audio track bug :(

April 15, 2016 at 5:26PM

Aaron Nanto

..great stuff looking forward to the updates... although I had to play the videos here describing After Effects a few times to understand what the V/O girl was saying...

April 16, 2016 at 7:39PM

Rob Englander
business owner/video producer/DOP/editor/miracle worker