Adobe Premiere Pro Vs Final Cut Pro X

Brad Smith
Latest posts by Brad Smith (see all)

    This debate has been going on for a long, long time.

    Which one is better — Adobe Premiere Pro or the classic Apple program, Final Cut Pro X?

    While Premiere Pro is one of the most advanced video editing software on the internet, Final Cut Pro X has its own traditional fan following and trumps the Adobe giant in a few areas.

    But in this post, I’m gonna end this debate once and for all.

    I’m gonna pass both the programs through different parameters and in the end, you’ll know which tool is actually the king of the ring.

    So, let’s see how these two prodigies stack up against each other.

    1. Usability

    “How I’m going to use this software?”

    That’s the very first question that comes to an average users’ mind while buying a video editing software.

    And that’s quite natural considering the complicated nature of a typical editing program. Seems like Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro follow the same tradition.

    Both the software are designed for intermediate or experienced users and require some serious effort and time from amateurs to learn the ropes.

    However, Final Cut Pro looks slightly underwhelming and cleaner at first glance compared to its Adobe counterpart.

    As soon as you open the program, it asks you to create a project, name it, and set the resolution and frame speed.

    final cut pro interface

    Once you’ve done that, you land on the actual editing area where you see a timeline at the bottom of your screen and a preview area on the center.

    final cut pro interfcace 2

    The left side of your screen in Final Cut Pro is where you find most of the editing functions and the files you’ve imported to edit or add to your project.

    And finally, the control settings are mainly on the right side where you can regulate the intensity of the different editing features.

    Now, Premiere Pro, on the other hand, has a busy user interface.

    The first screen, as usual, asks you to create a project and save it on your computer.

    And once you go past it, you come across the UI which has the same multitrack timeline at the bottom of the screen like Final Cut Pro.

    premiere pro interface

    On the left, we have a small project panel that displays all the files you’ve imported to the software. A source panel is just above it where you can playback the files in Project panel before you edit or add these files to your project.

    The main preview area is on the extreme right side of the screen, and unlike, Final Cut Pro, many of the editing features are placed with the timeline. It’s on the left-hand side of the timeline.

    Of course, the placement of toolbar is handy for veteran users, but those who have migrated to Premiere Pro from another program might find it a little awkward, at first.

    Other than the UI, almost everything is the same on both the tools.

    You get built-in tutorials in both the programs to assist you throughout your editing journey. And It takes a couple of clicks or drag & drop movement to perform any function on either of the software.

    So, who’s the winner?

    It’s a tight decision, but Final Cut Pro has a slight edge over Premiere Pro in this section because the UI is relatively simple and easy to navigate. While the Premiere Pro interface is a bit overwhelming.

    Winner: Final Cut Pro X

    2. Editing functions

    The number of editing functions is the most vital factor to decide whether you should invest in a tool or skip it.

    And once again, we have a neck-to-neck fight between these two titans.

    Just like any standard editing tool, both the programs are more than efficient in performing basic-level functions like cropping, trimming, cutting, mixing, and more.

    But as you move towards the more advanced features, some minor differences come into the scene.

    For example, while Premiere Pro doesn’t explicitly mention the total number of angles it covers in the multicam editing mode, Final Cut Pro enables you to watch and edit your clips from 16 different angles in one go.

    That’s insane!

    Similarly, Premiere Pro is slightly better than Final Cut Pro in making animation movies or editing 3D clips and objects.

    Though Final Cut Pro also enables you to work on 3D projects and add 3D titles to your standard videos, you don’t see anything beyond that.

    On the other hand, Premiere Pro is loaded with specific effects and transitions that you can include in your animated movies or 3D videos.

    What’s more?

    Since Premiere Pro is integrated with other Creative Cloud tools, it’s incredibly easy to send your files to Adobe Elements or After Effects, create some exclusive VFX there, and jump back on to Premiere Pro to add them to your project.

    That gives it a slight edge over Final Cut Pro when it comes to adding effects and transitions.

    Apart from this, everything else like color grading, audio mixing, editing VR videos, etc. are almost the same in both the software.

    You get a complete 360° package in either of the tools where you not only can view the VR footages in their original state, but also can stitch, trim, or add VR videos without any snag.

    All of these features are followed by the special VR effects and the power to stabilize jittery clips shot during an action.

    So, which tool rules this section?

    Adobe Premiere Pro emerge victorious in this fight because:

    1. It works more efficiently with 3D videos and…
    2. Enables you to flip back and forth between other CC tools without leaving the software. Final Cut Pro also has some integration options available, but they’re not as powerful as the Creative Cloud software.

    Winner: Adobe Premiere Pro

    3. 4K support and sharing options

    Supporting 4K UHD videos is a norm in almost all the editing programs. And it’s not a surprise to know both, Final Cut and Premiere Pro, are well capable of opening and editing 4K clips.

    But they don’t just stop here. They go a step ahead.

    While Premiere Pro allows you to work on 8K resolution clips, Final Cut Pro is not far behind, too. You can open and edit 6K resolution videos using the Apple video editing software.

    Similarly, it’s the same when you check for sharing options.

    Both the tools have this built-in publish to share facility, where you can format and share videos on different platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Vimeo straight from within the software.

    final cut pro sharing

    You also get the luxury to burn your movies into DVDs or Blu-ray disc in case there’s an offline requirement.

    Now, since we have no clear winner of this round, we can declare it a tie.

    Result: Tie

    4. Device compatibility and cloud storage

    Device compatibility and cloud storage are the only areas where we see a clear dominance from one tool.

    To start with device compatibility, Apple Final Cut Pro X, as the name goes, is developed only for Mac computers.

    The only silver lining is the generous license policy of Apple that lets you run the program on all the MacOS devices that you own.

    On the other side, Premiere Pro works fine on Windows as well as MacOS devices. Though the license policy is a bit strict and restricts you to install the software only on two computers.

    Premiere Pro system requirements

    Premiere Pro system Requirements 1

    Similarly, Premiere Pro has a clear upper hand when it comes to cloud storage.

    While you get 2 GB of cloud storage during the trial period, that number can surge up drastically and range anywhere between 25GB – 1TB according to the membership plan you choose.

    Unfortunately, Final Cut Pro doesn’t offer cloud space exclusively to its users, but you can at least save your files in iCloud.

    So, the winner of this round is…

    Adobe Premiere Pro.

    Winner: Adobe Premiere Pro

    5. Cost

    So far, things have been even-steven, but price is the biggest differentiator between these two giants.

    Final Cut and Premiere Pro follow two different pricing models.

    While Final Cut comes with a one-off price tag of $299, Premiere Pro is a little expensive and requires you to sign up for a monthly/yearly subscription plan.

    Final Cut Pro X price

    As per the membership plans of Adobe, the least expensive is their “Single App” plan that costs you only $20/month when billed annually and includes 100GB of cloud storage.

    Premiere Pro plans

    So, the upfront amount you pay comes down to $240, and you will have to pay it every year to continue reaping the benefits of the tool without any hindrance.

    And to be honest, I prefer the one-off pricing option because you pay once and keep the tool for your entire life.

    So, the winner of this round is, undoubtedly, Apple Final Cut Pro X.

    Winner: Apple Final Cut Pro X


    The final score reads 2-2.

    2 points for Premiere Pro, 2 for Final Cut Pro, and a tie. That indicates how tight the race was.

    Now, everything boils down to this question:

    Which is better – Adobe Premiere Pro or Apple Final Cut Pro X?

    And honestly speaking, we don’t have a clear winner per se.

    Even though both the programs are almost equal in editing prowess and usability, they would attract two different kinds of users.

    The first category belongs to those who want a tool that works perfectly fine on Windows and Mac computer, need cloud space, and are able to pay a substantial amount of money every year.

    Adobe Premiere is the perfect companion for such users.

    On the flip side, users who work only on Mac computers, don’t care much about cloud storage and prefer one-off pricing over recurring payment would love Apple Final Cut Pro X.

    Finally, it doesn’t matter which program you choose, you can never go wrong with either of them.