We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Video software Reviews
15,669 Reviews

Adobe Premiere Elements 7 review

£64.49 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Adobe

Our Rating: We rate this 3 out of 5 User Rating: Our users rate this 5 out of 10

Adobe Premiere Elements 7 is the update to Adobe's Premiere Elements 4 consumer movie-making tool. Obviously.

Adobe Premiere Elements 7 is the update to Adobe's Premiere Elements 4 consumer movie-making tool. Obviously.

Who needs a big hard drive when everyone's videos will eventually live online? Neat new web services, such as the ones offered by Adobe and linked to from its new Adobe Premiere Elements 7 video editor, may incline folks to load everything they have on to the web. But Adobe will have to offer more space for less money - and greatly improve the editor's integration with online services - to attract heavy video users.

See also: Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 review

You don't have to buy the £76 Adobe Premiere Elements desktop application to get a free Photoshop.com account, which includes 2GB of capacity and a personal URL such as yourname.photoshop.com. (The site isn't identified as "Premiere.com," because it also works with Adobe's Photoshop Elements image editor.)

The 2GB of storage can accommodate a large number of still photos, but it equals less than half an hour of mini-DV video, for example. You can buy upgrade to 20GB; and additional storage packs are available in sizes up to 500GB, though Adobe hasn't finalised their pricing. By comparison, a subscription fee of $50 (£28) per year at IDrive.com will get you 150GB of storage space.

Unlike IDrive.com, however, Photoshop.com offers more than just a place to park data. You can set up Adobe Premiere Elements 7 to back up files automatically; you can set preference parameters (for example, you can instruct the site not to back up any file larger than X MB); and once files are uploaded, you can access them from any computer that has an internet connection, of course. But you can view only pictures online - to watch videos, you must download the entire clip to your desktop and use the PC's video playback software. The interface at Photoshop.com is attractive and operates slickly; and it has conduits to Facebook, Flickr, Photobucket, and Picasa, so you can view images hosted on those services in the same Photoshop.com window (it's pretty slow when accessing outside images, though).

We found that specifying files for backup within Adobe Premiere Elements 7 itself required more steps than we'd like; you have to open a "Tagging" dialog box and drag a tag on to the files. It would have been more convenient if the program had allowed me to right-clicking on files in the organiser and then choose an 'upload' option.

And that's just one of the frustrations we had with Elements' interface. Many commands are arranged in a seemingly haphazard way. For example, you can use a system-tray icon to set backup options such as instructing the application to upload only while idle; but to see which files have been backed up or have a backup pending, you click on a tiny icon in the lower left corner of the application window - and this action prompts them to appear in the Organise window in the upper right corner of the application. To set additional backup options, you must pull up the Preferences dialog box from beneath the Edit menu.

Another drawback: Adobe Premiere Elements 7 has no link in the main application window to take you to your uploaded files (unless you count the splash screen when it starts up; but if you want to get back to that, you have to close your project). The program's text and icons were very small on the high-resolution, 17in laptop monitor we were using, and you can't adjust their size. Last year in our review of Elements 4 (the immediate predecessor of Adobe Premiere Elements 7, oddly enough), we complained about too-small text size; the problem seems worse in Elements 7, probably because the latest program requires you to do more hunting for important commands.

Visit Photo Advisor for the latest reviews of digital photography and video hardware and software, cameras and accessories. PLUS: get tips and tricks to improve your photos

Visit Business Advisor for the latest business IT news, reviews, tips and tricks - plus sign up for our unique and FREE business IT newsletter

See also: Adobe Creative Suite 4 (CS4) review

INDIVIDUAL CS4 APPS REVIEWED IN DETAIL:

Adobe InDesign CS4 review

Adobe Photoshop CS4 review

Adobe Illustrator CS4 review

Adobe After Effects CS4 review

Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 review

Adobe Flash Professional CS4 review

Adobe Dreamweaver CS4 review

Adobe Premiere Elements 7 Expert Verdict »

1.8GHz processor with SSE2 support
3GHz processor required for HDV or Blu-ray
dual-core processor required for AVCHD
Microsoft Windows XP with Service Pack 2, Windows Media Center, or Windows Vista
For Windows XP: 512MB of RAM (2GB required for HDV, AVCHD, or Blu-ray)
For Windows Vista: 1GB of RAM (2GB required for HDV, AVCHD, or Blu-ray)
4.5GB of available hard-disk space
colour monitor with 16-bit colour video card
1,024x768 monitor resolution at 96dpi or less
Microsoft DirectX 9 or 10 compatible sound and display driver
DVD-ROM drive (compatible DVD burner required to burn DVDs
compatible Blu-ray burner required to burn Blu-ray discs)
DV/i.LINK/FireWire/IEEE 1394 interface to connect a Digital 8 DV or HDV camcorder, or a USB2 interface to connect a DV-via-USB compatible DV camcorder (other video devices supported via the Media Downloader)
QuickTime 7 software
  • Overall: We give this item 6 of 10 overall

The upgrades to Adobe Premiere Elements 7 didn't strike us as very compelling. We like the addition of downloadable walkthroughs and templates, the Smart Tags, and the ability to sync files without thinking about it. But the interface needs some housecleaning, Elements' integration with Photoshop.com is pretty thin, and its integration with third-party services even thinner. More Webbiness is fine, but what we really want is more YouTubiness.

  • Adobe Photoshop CS4 review

    Adobe Photoshop CS4

    Adobe Photoshop CS4, the latest version of Adobe's flagship image-editing program, will hit the streets practically on the heels of Photoshop CS3, which debuted a little less than 18 months ago.

  • Adobe Illustrator CS4 review

    Adobe Illustrator CS4

    Illustrator Creative Suite 4 (CS4) enjoys a revamped interface, new gradient tools and much, much more.

  • Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 review

    Adobe Premiere Pro CS4

    Adobe Premiere Pro CS4 is the fourth incarnation of Adobe's professional video-editing software.

  • Adobe Creative Suite 4 (CS4) review

    Adobe Creative Suite 4 (CS4)

    Among the highlights of Adobe Creative Suite 4 are a simplified workflow system, new tools for integrating Flash animations into projects. CS4 also enjoys expanded support for community features.

  • Adobe Flash Professional review

    Adobe Flash Professional

    Flash CS4 features a radically revised animation environment.


IDG UK Sites

Best Black Friday 2014 tech deals: Get bargains on smartphones, tablets, laptops and more

IDG UK Sites

Why you shouldn't buy your gadgets at launch: Wait and pick up a bargain

IDG UK Sites

Artist creates a geometric rave in a chapel for The House of St Barnabus

IDG UK Sites

Mac mini (Late 2014) 1.4 GHz review: Mac mini is sort of upgradable, but is it any good as it is?